April, 1812.

uation, if we are to believe the accounts received from that country, a great many are now reduced; and I cannot but believe it would be very injudicious in us, at this time particularly, to adopt a measure which it is admitted must and will afford them very great relief. By taking it for granted that the embargo just laid will have no other effect than barely to preserve such of our seamen as are now at home; and that our merchants, under the delusion that we do not intend going to war, will not order their ships home, unless we pass this bill to afford them the temptation of freights; one of the gentlemen (Mr. Lowndes) has urged, as an irresistible argument in favor of the bill, that it will have the effect of bringing home thousands of our seamen, whose services we shall need, but otherwise certainly lose. Now, sir, by every day’s papers, from our great seaport towns, we see that our seamen and ships are returning from foreign voyages, and the embargo, I should suppose, will keep at home as well the seamen thus daily arriving, as those in port at the time the law was enforced. And, to convince us that our merchants would not order their ships home, he should have shown us some flag under which, and some trade in which they could be profitably employed as neutral vessels on their own country being involved in war. For, believe me, sir, this class of our citizens are too keen-sighted to their own interest, notwithstanding all their affectation of a belies that we did not intend going to war, not to have taken the possibility of such an event into consideration, in framing their own instructions to their captains or supercargoes. And, sir, as I do not know of any civilized neutral maritime Power at this time but ourselves, as I do not see that, under the flag of a belligerent, they could find more profitable employment than under that of their own Government, even supposing this class of our citizens to be utterly devoid of patriotism, which I am not prepared to admit, I do not think the apprehensions of the gentleman, that they will not order their ships home, well found. ed; and, of course, this argument has not that weight upon my mind which it appears to have upon his. To the arguments of the gentleman, that France cannot have any just ground of complaint against us for passing this bill, I heartily subscribe. If that Government should complain, it will certainly be without good cause, and in such case her complaints would have no weight upon my mind against the measure. But whether our own citizens may not have cause of complaint at our change of the mode of resistance, is another question. There is, however, one view of the subject under consideration which seems to have escaped the attention of both the gentlemen who have advocated it; it is one, however, which as it strikes my mind is by no means unworthy our attention. It is this—that the success of this measure does not depend entirely upon ourselves. The bill has been argued as though it were a mere intermal regulation, depending entirely upon ourselves

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for its complete execution. Yet it is obvious, that in order to give the bill the effects intended, we have to go into the dominion and put ourselves in the power of the very nation against which we intend to declare war the very moment we return. And, sir, are we certain, do we believe it past doubt, that the British Government on the arrival of our vessels in England to take off this vast amount of property, which is to replenish our Treasury with duties; supply us with necessaries for several years of the war; enrich our merchants by giving them capital on which to establish manufactories to such an extent as thereafter, for ever to rival their own;–after getting all, or a great part of our speeie from our country, into theirs, as I have shown they probably will do, I ask, is it certain, when she has thus got all the resources of our country within her power, and knowing that immediately on their return we are resolved on a declaration of war against her, she will let them out of her grasp? If she does, she will certainly not act with her usual foresight, or according to the maxims of her recent policy. A nation that, to deprive a neighboring Power at peace with her, but suspected of being about to become hostile, could without any previous notice of hostility lay the capital of that neighbor in ashes, and wrest from her all her means of annoyance; a nation that could so shamefully disavow a solemn arrangement entered into by her Minister, after availing herself of all the benefits that arrangement was calculated to afford her; such a nation has become lost to all sense of national honor, and has substituted in its place her interests for the moment. And, sir, from my soul I believe, that if we pass the bill under present circumstances, Great Britain will make the most she can of it, and that neither our ships, our seamen, nor our property will ever be permitted to return till the close of the war. Should this prove to be the case, and I warn the House of its probability, we shall, indeed, rue too late the folly of giving up a certainly for an uncertainty ; of grasping at a shadow and losing the substance. Mr. Cheves said, that he did not rise to discuss the merits of this question, but to say that he should vote for the motion of the honorable gentleman from Virginia out of respect for the opinion of that worthy gentleman, which he found to be that also of a great portion of the House. He never had himself entertained a doubt as to the propriety of the bill. It might not be popular, as gentlemen urged; but popularity, much as he respected the public voice, (and none was more anxious than himself to merit its approbation,) should never stand between him and his duty. He considered this as a war measure in the strongest sense of the word, and in that view supported it. Finding, however, that his friends wished for delay ; as he wished their support and approbation of the measure, he should not object to postponement for a few days. Mr. WIDGERY.—Mr. Speaker, the question before the House is a question of importance; on the part of England, she only wishes to vend her

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manufactures in the United States; the United States wish to pass and repass to other nations with her own produce—let England grant the one and we the other. The whole of the arguments used by the gentleman from South Carolina yesterday went to three points; one, that England had not specie enough to pay her debts; that she could not pay our citizens unless we suffered the importation of British manufactures: a third reason was, that the sailors could get home to their country in this way only. Let us examine these points, for on no other, that I recollect, had their arguments any bearing. First, that England has not specie enough to pay her debts, is agreed on all sides; but it does not follow from that, that we should repeal our non-importation law ; nor do I agree that the gentlemen are correct in their assertion, that England owes this country $50,000,000—if that were true, it would be a strong reason against war; it is not the fact. The gentlemen have declared it as their opinion ; in my opinion, the description of debts contemplated in the bill would not amount to $2,000,000, if it does to one million. The gentlemen have the affirmative side of the question—let them bring anything that looks like proof if they can. If gentlemen are allowed to fix their own premises, there is no difficulty in drawing the conclusion; but I disagree with the gentlemen in their premises. They say it will bring fifteen or twenty millions into the Treasury; but in the same proportion as the debt is reduced, the duties must fall short—so that, in the event of there being but one million due, we should fall short of three hundred thousand in the public chest by these imports, provided they were all to arrive safe. But the time which is allowed, would be far too short for them to leave this country and get back with their goods; therefore, if they should attempt it, they would get their goods, receipt their debtors, and the English ships would take them coming home and condemn them as good prize; and thus, instead of helping them, you would injure them. The British are among you, they are everywhere present—you cannot keep them from the knowledge of your preparations. If they find you are determined for war, they will that moment stop all they can. As to the sailors coming home in these vessels, and having no other way to get to their own country, this is not the fact, unless you agree that a vessel loaded with English goods can accommodate more sailors than a vessel in a set of ballast—the vessels are arriving every day in ballast. This part of the gentleman's argument must, therefore, fall to the ground. But admit, for argument's sake, that they could get home—would you not give England an opportunity, in the course of three months, to sap the very foundation of your Government 7 Would she not sell bills enough to drain your vaults in all your banks, and thus supply herself with your specie to support the war, and leave you moneyless 2 If she did not, it would not be because you did not put it in her power. But, sir, there is another good reason against this partial repeal of the non-importation law; it would reconcile

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her own mechanics at home, who are now in the greatest distress for want of a market for their manufactures; this would be granting them relief in a case which of all others is to England of the greatest consequence, and which at present causes them the most distress at home. But, sir, there is another point of view in which this matter is to be considered, as it relates to our engagements with France. If our Government has engaged with her, that if she would revoke her decrees we would have a non-importation law against England, and France has accepted our offer, and that too, after we had offered the same to England, and she had refused it; are we not bound in honor, honesty, and good faith, to comply on our part 3 Sir, I think we are bound, unless Franee should fail on her part. Will she not, on hearing that you have repealed your non-importation law, stop all the property of the Americans in France 2 and will she not send forth her privateers to burn all your vessels from England? When we are about to pass a bill like that on your table, we ought to consider it in every possible point of view in which it can have a bearing for or against us. Who can say that in case this bill passes, we shall not lose as much by France as we should gain by England, to say nothing about your forfeiting the faith of the nation, solemnly pledged to France if she would revoke her decrees. Mr. Speaker, I entreat of my brethren within this Hall, and others of my country, in God's name not to sell their birthright for a mess of pottage. Mr. McKim said he should vote for the indefinite postponement of this bill, though he would rather have given a direct vote on the question. . It was with extreme reluctance that on this subject he differed in opinion with his friends, for whose public and private virtues he had the greatest respect. He viewed this bill as pregnant with the most pernicious consequences. If he could once see the Legislature act independently of considerations arising from the commerce with foreign Powers; if they would only act under a conviction that we could exist without drawing our resources from Great Britain, he should yet hope to see this nation maintain its ground against its inveterate enemy. But as long as we show our enemy that we cannot exist without deriving supplies from her, he feared we should not be able to maintain the ground we have taken. It is not my intention, said he, to discuss at large the merits of this bill; but some points I will briefly notice. It has been advocated, as promising a support to manufactures. . How will this be afforded ? By importing the very articles to be manufactured You are to bring in foreign commodities to paralyze your new sources of industry. Perhaps the capital brought in may be employed in establishing new manufactures; but the goods thus introduced, it is clear to my mind, will destroy those already established. But this measure, it is said, will bring home your ships and seamen. How is their return to be effected by its agency 7 Will they not return without it? It is well known, sir, that the produce

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of this country is bulky; that it requires a great extent of tonnage to import it—that the vessels frequently must return in ballast; and they will return as certainly in this way (as heretofore) as though they had brought it in return cargoes. If as gentlemen contend, taking them on their own ground, this measure would be beneficial to the interests of our country; if it is to give us capital to carry on war and encourage manufactures, why limit the importation to the first of August 2 The act of limiting it, shows it to be an indulgence for a particular purpose, and not a measure predicated on the general good. The only solid ground on which it appears to me the argument in favor of this bill can stand, is the right of every citizen to indulgence when it can be granted consistently with the public good. Sir, Ilament the situation of those who purchased goods in England prior to the non-importation act going into effect, and I wish we could relieve them without injury to the country. But the measure now in force was a prohibition of the importation of British manufactures, with a view to deprive them of the sale of their manufactures at the time they deprived us of the markets of Europe—to counteract those measures of which we had experienced the evil. What has been done to induce us to remove this restriction ? Nothing; and I regret to see a disposition to remove it. This vacillating policy has greatly injured this nation, by raising a doubt whether it was possible for us to persist in any measure for a sufficient length of time to render it effectual. I should be highly gratified to see any one expedient per: severed in till it had produced the effect expected from it; and therefore am opposed to the bill. The most important view of this subject is, that a passage of the bill would create distress in the mind of the American people, and have a ten: dency to impress them with an opinion that all our warlike preparations have not been intended to carry into effect the object we profess to have in view. The motion for indefinite postponement was negatived—yeas 50, nays 60, as follows: YEAs—William Anderson, David Bard, William W. Bibb, William Blackledge, Adam Boyd, Robert Brown, John Clopton, William Crawford, Joseph Desha, Elias Earle, James Fisk, Thomas Gholson, Peterson Goodwyn, Isaiah L. Green, Bolling Hall, Obed Hall, John M. Hyneman, Richard M. Johnson, Joseph Kent, Abner Lacock, Joseph Lefever, Peter Little, Aaron Lyle, Nathaniel Macon, William McCoy, Alexander McKim, Arunah Metcalf, Samuel L. Mitchill, Jeremiah Morrow, Hugh Nelson, Anthony New, Thomas Newton, William Piper, Benjamin Pond, Samuel Ringgold, John Rhea, John Roane, Ebenever Sage, John Sevier, Samuel Shaw, George Smith, William Strong, John Taliaferro, George M. Troup, Charles Turner, jun., Robert Whitehill, David R. Williams, William Widgery, Richard Winn, and Robert Wright. Nars—Willis Alston, jr., John Baker, Burwell Bassett, Abijah Bigelow, Harmanus Bleecker, James Breckenridge, Elijah Brigham, William A. Burwell, William Butler, John C. Calhoun, Epaphroditus Champion, Langdon Cheves, John Davenport, jun., 12th Cox. 1st Sess.-42

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man, Adam Seybert, Daniel Sheffey, John Smilie, John Smith, Richard Stanford, Philip Stuart, Silas Stow, Lewis B. Sturges, Samuel Taggart, Benjamin Tallmadge, Uri Tracy, Laban Wheaton, Leonard White, and Thomas Wilson. Mr. PLEASANTs again spoke in explanation of his former remarks, and in support of the motion for postponement to Monday. Mr. Lowndes also again spoke in support of the present motion. He said, if if should prevail, unless there should appear to be a change in the opinion of his friends, after a week's calm reflection, so great as to induce a majority of those with whom he acted to adopt his opinion in favor of the bill, against which he must say he had heard no sufficient objection urged, he should not feel himself at liberty to call up the bill on the day to which it was to be postponed. If there should appear to have been such a change, he should then call it up. The motion for postponement to Monday week

was then put and carried. RECESS OF CONGRESS.

Mr. Bibb called up his unotion to appoint a committee, to join with such as should be appointed by the Senate, to examine into the un- . finished business, and report whether and when an adjournment could take place. He said he did not propose to repeat the observations he had made on the subject yesterday. The resolution barely proposed an inquiry, and was of that nature that rarely met with opposition in the House. If, upon investigation, it should be found that the public interest would suffer from such a measure, he presumed the committee would report against it. If, on the contrary, it could be done without injury, they would report in favor of it. The report of the arrival of the Hornet was no argument against a motion to inquire.

Mr. RhEA said, as he viewed this resolution as a part of the system to which the bill for suspending the non-importation belonged, he wished them to go hand in hand; and therefore moved to postpone the surther consideration of this motion to Monday week, the day to which that bill was postponed, and if possible he would refer it to the same Committee of the Whole.

Mr. Johnson suggested to the gentleman the propriety of following the same course now as he had done in the case of the bill just alluded to. He had better move an indefinite postponement, and thus resolve that the House should never adjourn. Mr. J. said he was for taking the subject up at once, and deciding whether an inquiry should be inade. No time was proposed by the

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resolution, but merely an inquiry into the business which was most urgent, and whether the House could with propriety adjourn. It appeared to him that it would be more agreeable to some people that the House should never adjourn at all. Mr. SMILIE spoke in favor of the motion, and against postponement. Mr. BAsseTT spoke warmly against the original motion. He said it would be considered ; the people as giving the go-by to the question of war. There was nothing so much to be guarded against in this Government as vacillation. It was natural for men to differ, and it was therefore not to be wondered at that he did not take the same view of this subject as the gentleman from Georgia; but he really did believe an adi. of Congress at this time would parağ. the spirit of the people and the action of the overnment. There was more now at stake than the mere question of war or peace; for, if this and similar measures were adopted, the people never would believe that Congress or the Government possessed energy enough to support their rights. Mr. WRight said, if the bill, which had been postponed to Monday week, should pass, he was prepared to adjourn. If such an anti-war measure was adopted, the sooner they adjourned the better. . He should, therefore, vote for postponement of this motion, till he should see what was to be the fate of that bill. Mr. BURwell said that the proposition now before the House embraced two objects: an inquiry what business was necessary to be done, and whether an adjournment could take place consistently with the public interest. It ought to be desired by every member of the House that an inquiry of this kind should be made, because it would present to the House the most important measures now before them, and their attention would be particularly turned to them. The other object—an inquiry into the propriety of adjourning—was not inconsistent with any course which Congress had thought proper to pursue, because they might meet again at as early a day as gentlemen pleased. No improper impression, therefore, could be made by the motion; and he hoped it would not be postponed. The question for postponement was negatived. The question on appointing the committee to inquire, &c., was then decided in the affirmative–yeas 72, nays 40, as follows: YzAs—Willis Alston, jun., Ezekiel Bacon, John Baker, William W. Bibb, Abijah Bigelow, Harmanus Bleecker, Adam Boyd, James Breckenridge, Elijah Brigham, William A. Burwell, John C. Calhoun, Epaphroditus Champion, Martin Chittenden, John Davenport, jun., Roger Davis, Elias Earle, William Ely, James Emott, William Findley, James Fisk, Asa Fitch, Thomas R. Gold, Peterson Goodwyn, Isaiah L. Green, Aylett Hawes, Jacob Husty, John M. Hyneman, Richard Jackson, jun., Richard M. Johnson, Joseph Kent, Philip B. Key, William R. King, Joseph Lewis, jun., Nathaniel Macon, Archibald McBryde, Arunah Metcalf, James Milnor, Jeremiah Morrow, Jonathan O. Moseley, Hugh Nelson, Thomas Newbold, Joseph Pearson, Israel Pickens, William Piper, Timothy Pit

kin, jr., James Pleasants, jun., Benjamin Pond, Elisha R. Potter, Josiah Quincy, John Randolph, William Reed, Henry M. Ridgely, William Rodman, Ebenezer Seaver, Samuel Shaw, Daniel Sheffey, John Smilie, George Smith, Richard Stanford, Philip Stuart, Silas Stow, William Strong, Lewis B. Sturges, Samuel Taggart, Benjamin Tallmadge, Uri Tracy, Laban Wheaton, Leonard White, Robert Whitehill, David R. Williams, William Widgery, and Thomas Wilson. NAY's—William Anderson, David Bard, Burwell Bassett, William Blackledge, Robert Brown, William Butler, Langdon Cheves, John Clopton, William Crawford, Joseph Desha, Samuel Dinsmoor, Thomas Gholson, Felix Grundy, Bolling Hall, Obed Hall, John A. Harper, Abner Lacock, Joseph Lefever, Peter Little, William Lowndes, Aaron Lyle, William McCoy, Samuel McKee, Alexander McKim, Samuel L. Mitchill, Anthony New, Thomas Newton, Stephen Ormsby, Samuel Ringgold, John Rhea, John Roane, Jonathan Roberts, Ebenezer Sage, John Sevier, Adam Seybert, John Smith, George M. Troup, Charles Turner, jr., Richard Winn, and Robert Wright.

Mr. Bibb, Mr. Macon, Mr. Pleas ANts, Mr. Moseley, and Mr. Roberts, were appointed the committee on the part of this House.

SAt URDAY, April 11.

A quorum not appearing, the House adjourned until Monday.

- Monday, April 13. Mr. MoRRow presented a petition of Eligius Fromentin and Allan B. Magruder, delegates from the Convention of the Territory of Orleans, praying that the free use, in common, of the cypress swamps lying in the said Territory, may be granted to the inhabitants thereof.-Referred to the Committee on the Public Lands. Mr. Bacon, from the Committee of Ways and Means, presented a bill making additional appropriations for the support of Government, for the year 1812; which was read twice, and committed to a Committee of the Whole on Wednesday next. On motion of Mr. Pitkin, the documents presented to the House on the twenty-fourth ultimo, and tenth instant, relative to the burning cf the ship Asia, and brig Gershom, by a squadron of French ships of war, was referred to the Secretary of State. Mr. WRight, from the Military Committee, made a report on the petition of Edward Clarke, respecting a new mode of harbor defence by buoy forts. The report states that the committee had examined the model, but that it was impossible to judge of the effect without an actual experiment thereof. The committee therefore recommend a resolution that the Secretary of the Navy be authorized to make an experiment of the same. The report was read and ordered to lie on the table. Mr. BLAckledge reported a bill relating to appeals from the district to the circuit courts of the United States. Twice read and committed. The engrossed bill to authorize the Secretary of the Treasury to purchase the old City Hall in

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the city of New York, was read a third time and passed. The amendments of the Senate to the bill for establishing a corps of artificers were read, and referred to the Military Committee. The bill giving further time for registering claims to land in the eastern district of the Territory of Orleans was read a third time and passed. The House resolved itself into a Committee of the Whole, on the bill for ascertaining the titles and claims to lands in that part of Louisiana which lies east of the river Mississippi and island of New Orleans. The committee reported the bill to the House, and it was, with amendments, ordered to be engrossed for a third reading.


Mr. McKIM offered to the House the following resolution, premising that he had been particularly induced to offer it, by considerations resulting from the present state of things in the State of New York, arising from the disability of the District Judge, by which upwards of seven hundred suits were kept in suspense, to the great injury of individuals and prejudice of the Government. In order to remedy that difficulty, a bill had passed both Houses, which had been returned by the President as objectionable on Constitutional grounds. It had been pronounced on this floor by a respectable law authority, that if that bill was rejected there was no other remedy. He therefore, had been induced to offer the following resolution: Resolved, by the Senate and House of Representatires of the United States of America in Congress assembled, (two-thirds of both Houses concurring,) That the following section be submitted to the Legislatures of the several States, which, when ratified by the Legislatures of three-fourths of the States, shall be valid and binding as a part of the Constitution of the United States: “Resolved, That the Judges of the Supreme and Inserior Courts may be removed from office, on the joint address of the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States.” The resolution was ordered to lie on the table, and to be printed—44 to 33. , ,


Mr. Rhea observed, that there had been an inquiry some time pending before a committee of that House into the conduct of Judge Toulmin. There appeared to him to be no disposition in that committee to report on this subject. It appeared to be a very general opinion that there was no truth in the charges preferred against that officer. The subject having been before that committee several months, he wished that they should be directed forth with to make report; and concluded by making a motion to that effect.

Mr. Point Exter remarked on the novelty in all Parliamentary history of such a motion as that proposed. He stated, for the information of the House, that the chairman of that committee (Mr. P. himself) had recently received a mass of additional evidence on the subject, and expected more

in a mail or two. If the gentleman was not in so great a hurry, his friend (as he had reason to believe Judge Toulmin to be) would have the benefit of testimony which would go to his complete acquittal. To his mind this was a most extraordinary proceeding, requiring a committee forth with to report, who had before them, to read and digest, on this subject, two hundred and fifty pages of manuscript.

After a few words of reply from Mr. RhEA, his motion was negatived.


A confidential message from the Senate was announced by the SPEAKER ; and the House was accordingly cleared of all persons but the members and officers of the House. The doors were soon opened ; when The House resolved itself into a Committee of the Whole, on the bill to incorporate Moses Austin, Henry Austin, John R. Jones, and others, in the Territory of Louisiana, by the name of the Lead Company of Louisiana. After considerable debate, the first section of the bill was stricken out, on motion of Mr. TRoup. The question on concurrence with the committee was decided by yeas and nays. For concurrence 46, against concurrence 43, as follows: YEAs—Willis Alston, jr., William W. Bibb, Robert Brown, William A. Burwell, John C. Calhoun, Langdon Cheves, John Clopton, William Crawford, Samuel Dinsmoor, Elias Earle, William Findley, Thomas Gholson, Isaiah L. Green, Obed Hall, John A. Harper, Aylett Hawes, Jacob Hufty, John M. Hyneman, William R. King, Abner Lacock, Peter Little, Aaron Lyle, Thomas Moore, William McCoy, Arunah Metcalf, Thomas Newbold, Thomas Newton, William Piper, James Pleasants, junior, Samuel Ringgold, John Rhea, Jonathan Roberts, William Rodman, Ebenezer Seaver, John Sevier, Adam Seybert, Sam'l Shaw, John Smilie, Richard Stanford, William Strong, George M. Troup, Charles Turner, jr., Laban Wheaton, Robert Whitehill, Thomas Wilson, and Robert Wright. Nays—Ezekiel Bacon, John Baker, Burwell Bassett, William Blackledge, Harmanus Bleecker, Adam Boyd, James Breckenridge, Lewis Condict, John Davenport, jr., Joseph Desha, William Ely, James Emott, James Fisk, Asa Fitch, Thos. R. Gold, Charles Goldsborough, Bolling Hall, Joseph Lewis, jun., Nathaniel Macon, Archibald McBryde, Samuel McKee, Alexander McKim, Jeremiah Morrow, Jonathan O. Moseley, Anthony New, Stephen Ormsby, Jos. Pearson, Israel Pickens, Timothy Pitkin, jr., Elisha R. Potter, Josiah Quincy, William Reed, Henry M. Ridgely, Ebenezer Sage, Daniel Sheffey, George Smith, Silas Stow, Lewis B. Sturges, Samuel Taggart, Benjamin Tallmadge, Uri Tracy, Leonard White, and David R. Williams.

And so the said bill was rejected.

Tuesday, April 14. The Clerk being absent, it was moved by Mr. Blackledge, that the House proceed to the appointment of a Clerk for the time being; whereupon Geo. Magruder was unanimously appointed Clerk, pro tempore. Mr. {o}. from the committee appointed on

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