Sidebilder
PDF
[merged small][ocr errors]

promise, and agree with the said Albert Gallatin as aforesaid, that he, the said Henry McKinley, shall and will, well and faithfully, and in a workmanlike manner, on or before the 1st day of August, 1812, make, finish, and complete in the manner, and on the conditions hereinbefore mentioned, all that part of the road abovementioned, which is designated by the name of the “first section.” beginning at Cumberland, in Maryland, and ending at a place on said road two-miles and two hundred and forty-six perches distant from said Cumberland. . In consideration whereof, the said Albert Gallatin. for and in behalf of the United States as aforesaid, doth hereby covenant, promise, and and agree, to and with the said Henry McKinley, his executors, and administrators, that the said United States shall and will, for doing and performing the work aforesaid, well and truly

y, or cause to be paid, to the said Henry Mc

inley, his executors, or administrators, at the rate of twenty-one dollars and twenty-five cents for each and every perch in length of said road, in the following manner, viz: when forty perches in length of said road are finished, and approved by the superintendent, the United States will pay to the said Henry McKinley, for twenty perches: and after that, they will pay him on the completion of every twenty perches for the said twenty perches; at all time reserving the amount due for the first twenty perches, until the whole of the section hereby contracted for shall have been finished and completed to the satisfaction of the superintendent, agreeably to contract, when the ... due shall be paid to the said Henry McKinley. And the said Henry McKinley, for himself, his heirs, executors, and administrators, further covenant and agree with the said Albert Gallatin, Secretary of the Treasury, for and in behalf of the United States, that, in case the said Henry McKinley shall not well and truly, from time to time, comply with and perform all the covenants and conditions hereinbefore stated and stipulated on his part to be done, performed, and complied with, in the manner and form, and within the time hereinbefore mentioned; or, in case it should appear to the Secretary of the Treasury, for the time being, or to the superintendent of the road for the United States, that the work does not progress, and go on with sufficient speed, so as to be finished and completed in the time herein specified, that then the foregoing agreements on the part of the United States, and every part-thereof

his hand and seal, the day and year first before mentioned. , ALBERT GALLATIN, Secry of the Treasury. HENRY McKINLEY.

Signed, sealed, and delivered, in the presence of— George BRUCE, John Rive, M. WAllAce.

Approved: JAMES MADISON.

Extract of a letter from David Shriver, junior, to the Secretary of the Treasury, dated

WestMINster, Jan. 14, 1812.

I hope the enclosed report will be found such as was required. Should any part be found improper, I will thank you to return it to me, at this place, with your remarks; or, should it be thought best that I should again attend at the city, you will please direct me; my reason for pointing out the probable cost of the ten miles, is, that Congress might know what sum would complete the road to any particular point. The small sum wanting, in addition to the balance that will remain unexpended, to enable them to make the road across Meadow Mountain to Tomlinson's, (which would be eleven miles in o Congress ought to give. The road then would be very beneficial to the public; whereas, if we stop at the end of seventeen or eighteen miles, it will be of little or no service, ending in a wilderness instead of a settlement, and in a tolerable level country, where persons from various points might travel to it. This small sum would likewise enable us to keep the hands, now on the work, in employ; a great number of them have families, and have moved on the work at considerable expense, which has, in a number of instances, been paid by the contractors, and the poor people, yet indebted, some of them, considerably, should they be obliged to leave the work, it would, in my opinion, be difficult to gather them again. The Legislature of this State has passed a law to establish a bank at Cumberland. The stock is to be subscribed on the first of April next. This bank will remove one difficulty, which has always been an important one with me. I shall leave this place for the road as soon as there is any prospect of being able to go on with

shall become null and void ; and the United the work.

States shall be at liberty, and have full right and authority, anything herein to the contrary not

withstanding, to employ and set to work, or to contract with any person or persons whomsoever, in the place and stead of the said Henry McKinley, and without any interruption or interference whatsoever from him, the said Henry McKinley, his executors, or administrators.

JANUARY 14, 1812.

SiR : It being required by law that a statement should be submitted to Congress at each session, I have considered it my duty to give a concise view of the progress and present state of the Western road, under my superintendence, with

In witness whereof, the said Albert Galla- such additional observations as arose out of the - *

tin, Secretary of the Treasury, in behalf of the United States, hath hereunto subscribed his name, and affixed the seal of the Treasury; and the said Henry McKinley has hereunto set

subject.

The levelling and shaping the bed of the road is complete, with a few exceptions, for about five miles; the stone for the pavement laid on a greater part thereof, and about four miles broken so as to be nearly complete. Such being the present state of the work, the probability is, that the ten miles will be completed within the time limited by contract, the 1st of August next. The expense of mason-work, bridging, lime, &c., cannot, at present, be exactly ascertained, but is expected, when added to the contracts, will make the entire cost of those ten miles about $75,000. Should it be finally determined to roll the road, and gravel or sand it, the cost will be, in addition to the above amount, rolling about thirty dollars per mile, gravelling or sanding, where either of those articles can be conveniently had, about one dollar per perch in length of the road. The whole of my attention being absolutely required on the work in hand, I have not been enabled to acquire sufficient information of the next ten miles, so as to speak with precision, but have viewed the location, and made such an estimate as circuinstances would admit, by which it appears that the expense will be nearly the Sa in e. No alteration or addition to the law has suggested itself, as absolutely necessary, except some provision for keeping the road in repair, after it shall be received from the contractors; for, on turnpikes which pass over a more level surface, that have time to settle and become firm, and on which constant repairs are made, it has, not withstanding, been found difficult, at certain seasons of the year, to keep them in good order. The present road passing over ground so broken, subject to the wash of large quantities of water discharged from steep valleys adjoining, as well as the operations of the seasons upon it in its green and unsettled state, and the great use which, rom its local situation, will immediately be made of it, will, when taken into view together, present to the mind the state in which it will very soon be, if left to the free and unrestrained use of all, without attention and without repair. I would respectfully suggest the propriety of demanding such a toll as will be sufficient to keep it in good and perfect order. I am, &c. - DAVID SHRIVER, JR.

Eartension of Patent Right.

Hon. Albert GALLATIN, Secretary of Treasury of the U. S.

-

EXTENSION OF A PATENT RIGHT.

[Communicated to the House, April 20, 1812.]

To the Honorable the Senate and House of Representa

tives in Congress assembled, the memorial of Eli

Whitney respectfully showeth.

That your memorialist is the inventor of the machine with which the principal part of the cotton raised in the United States is cleaned and prepared for market. That, being in the State of Georgia in the year 1793, he was informed by the plauters that the agriculture of that State was unproductive, especially in the interior, where it

produced little or nothing for exportation. That attempts had been made to cultivate cotton, but that the prospect of success was not flattering. That of the various kinds which had been tried in the interior none of them were productive, except the green seed cotton, which was so extremely difficult to clean as to discourage all further attempts to raise it. That it was generally believed this species of cotton might be cultivated with great advantage, if any cheap and expeditious method of separating it from its seeds could be discovered, and that such a discovery would be highly beneficial both to the public and the inWent Or. These remarks first drew the attention of your memorialist to this subject, and, after considerable reflection, he became impressed with a belief that this desirable object might be accomplished. At the same time he could not but entertain doubts whether he ought to suffer any prospect of so precarious a nature as that which depends upon the success of new projects to divert his altention from a regular profession. About this time Congress passed a new patent law, which your memorialist considered as a premium offered to any citizen who should devote his attention to useful improvements, and as a pledge from his country that, in case he should be successful, his rights and his property would be protected. Under these impressions your memorialist relin: quished every other object of pursuit, and devoted his utmost exertions to reduce his invention, which, as yet, was little more than a floating im’ age of the mind, to practical use; and, fortunately for the country, ile succeeded in giving form to the conceptions of his imagination, and to matter a new mode of existence; and the result of this new modification of matter was everything that could be wished. After reducing his theory to practice, by effec. tual and successful experiments, your memorialist took out a patent. So alluring were the advantages developed by this invention that, in a short time, the whole attention of the planters of the middle and upper country of the Southern States was turned to planting the green seed cotton. The means furnished by this discovery, of cleaning that species of cotton, were at once so cheap and expeditious, and the prospect of advantage so alluring, that it suddenly became the general crop of the country. Little or no regard, however, was paid to the claims of your memorialist; and the infringement of his rights became almost as extensive as the cultivation of cotton. He was soon reduced to the disagreeable necessity of resorting to courts of justice for the protection of his property. After the unavoidable delays which usually as tend prosecutions of this kind, and a labored trial it was discovered that the defendants had only used, and that, as the law then stood, they mus both make and use the machine, or they could no be liable; the court decided that it was a fatal, though inadvertent defect in the law, and gao

judgment for the defendants.

[ocr errors][ocr errors][merged small]

Culture of the Tea Plant.

It was not until the year 1800 that this defect in the law was amended. Immediately after the amendment of the law, your memorialist coinmenced a number of suits; but so effectual were the means of procrastination and delay, resorted to by the defendants, that he was unable to obtain any decision on the merits of his claim until the year 1807; not until he had been eleven years in the law, and thirteen years of his patent term had expired. A compromise has been made with several of the States, to which your memorialist has assigned his right, and relinquished all further claim ; but from the State in which he first made and introduced his invention, and which has derived the most signal benefits from it, he has realized nothing ; and from no State has he received the amount of half a cent per pound on the cotton cleaned with his machine, within that State, in one year. Estimating the value of the labor of one man at twenty cents per day, the whole amount which has been realized by your memorialist for his invention is not equal to the value of the labor saved in one hour by his machines, now in use, in the United States. o Permit your memorialist further to remark that by far the greatest part of the cotton raised in the United States has been, and must of necessity continue to be, the green seed. That, before the

invention of your memorialist, the value of this

species of cotton, after it was cleaned, was not equal to the expense of cleaning it; that, since the cultivation of this species, it has been a great source of wealth to the community, and of riches to thousands of her citizens. That, as a laborsaving machine, it is an invention which enables one man to perform, in a given time. that which would require a thousand men, without its aid, to perform in the same time. In short, that it furnishes to the whole family of mankind the means of procuring the article of cotton, that important raw material which constitutes a great part of their clothing at a much cheaper rate.

Your memorialist begs leave further to state that a confident expectation that his case would be embraced in the general law which Congress has, for several years, had under consideration, has prevented his making an earlier application. Thai the expenses incurred by him, in making and introducing this useful improvement, and establishing his claim to its invention, have absorbed a great proportion of what he has received from those States with which he has made a compromise. That he humbly conceives himself fairly entitled to a further remuneration from his country; and that he ought to be admitted to a more liberal participation with his fellow citizens in the benefits of his invention.

He, therefore, prays your honorable body to take his case into consideration, and authorize the renewal of his patent, or grant such other relief as Congress, in their wisdom and their justice, may deem meet and proper.

ELI WHITNEY.

WashingtoN, April 16, 1812. 12th Con. 1st SEss.-69

CULTURE OF THE TEA PLANT.

[Communicated to the House, May 12, 1806.]

HAMpshire County, Virginia, NEAR Ronix Ey, May 13, 1812.

SIR: Supposing that an account of the introduction of any new species of agriculture might not be unacceptable to the Legislature of the United States, I take the liberty of sending you an account of the progress I have made in the introduction of the tea plant. s

Some years ago my brother went to China, in the Pennsylvania packet from Philadelphia, and had the good fortune to procure several of the scions, or young shoots, of the tea plant, together with directions for curing the tea, As I was at Philadelphia at the time of his return, he made me a present of the plants, which I accordingly brought here and introduced on my farm. The two first years I paid no attention to its culture: but last year, having more leisure, I took the trouble to transplant fifty or sixty twigs, and in October to gather and preserve the leaves according to the written directions I had from him. I found it to yield at an amazing rate, and the beverage which it afforded to be superior to the best imported tea. Perhaps this may be owing to their losing their fine flavor by crossing the sea. The leaves when green are more excellent than when dry. I had first supposed that the plant would thrive best in warm, rich situations, but, on transplanting. I put some in cold, poor situations, and these yield by far the most plentiful crop. You may cut any number of twigs off the tree, or plant, and just stick then in the ground; they will take root and grow. And I have been thinking that in eight or nine years my little nursery (by clipping the branches and planting them again) might be made to afford plants enough to supply the whole United States with tea, and that at a trouble and expense which would be scarcely perceptible.

As my wagon is going down to Alexandria, I have filled a large box with earth, in which I have planted a number of the twigs, and to each of them tied a label or directions for raising the plant, and curing the leaves in the same manner as I got it from my brother; the whole of which I have directed to be left with Mr. Gray, bookseller, of Alexandria, and to be by him delivered to you or your order.

I have acted in this manner from a supposition that many of the members might be desirous of seeing this newly introduced plant, and perhaps wish to convey some of them to their places of abode, or have them planted in botanic gardens. My reason for addressing this letter to you was that I supposed it more particularly your province than that of any other man to make the subject known to the House.

If it will be attended to, I make no doubt of the tea plant becoming a grand acquisition to the American nation, and the consciousness of hav

Report on the Patent Office.

[blocks in formation]

Mr. SEYBERT made the following report:

The committee to whom was referred the reso: lution directing them “to ascertain the number of persons employed in, and to inquire into the state and condition, of that branch of the Department of State wherein are preserved the models of machines for which patents have been granted by the United States, and whether any, and what, fees have been demanded by the clerks therein,” *#): to report, in part:

hat, on the 25th day of May, 1812, your com

mittee addressed a letter to the Secretary of State on the subject, and, on the 10th of June, 1812, received his answer, with sundry accompanying documents; all of which are here with respectfully submitted.

Your committee accord with the Secretary of State in the opinion, that every institution ought to be comprised within some one of the departments of Government. They need not repeat the reasons assigned in his letter, and they deem any additional arguments unnecessary. That the Secretary of State must be, at all times, much occupied with the foreign concerns of the United States, must be evident to every member of the Legislature; and that our foreign relations are, in many respects, essentially distinct from many objects in the interior of our country, which are attached to the duties of this officer, must be equally apparent. These last must increase every year with the improvements and extension of our settlements; such must be the avoidable result. Your committee, without entering into any detailed reasoning on the subject, offer, for the con

sideration of the Legislature. the propriety and necessity of authorizing a Home Department, distinct from the departments already established by law. Such departments are known to other Governments, and their benefits have been recognised in territories far less extensive than those of the United States. Your committee regret that, from an expectation of the short continuance of the present session of Congress, they cannot enter more at large into this subject, so as to urge its consideration with that weight of argument which it deserves; they will content themselves, at this time, with the bare suggestion of Legislative interference being necessary. The Secretary of State has remarked that it would be proper to extend the privilege of franking letters to the person who may be appointed to

superintend the concerns of the Patent Establishment of the United States. Of this your committee are well satisfied. The Secretary of State is much occupied in receiving, reading, and franking letters, which he ultimately must refer to the clerk of the Patent Office. No advantage can arise from this regulation, and it is apprehended no serious evils can follow the alteration herein contemplated. Your committee have inquired into the conduct of the clerks employed in the establishment, respecting their demand for or receipt of fees, and they are satisfied that no causes exist which can attach suspicion to their conduct in this respect. They have not been able to trace an instance where the clerks proceeded contrary to the established law on this subject. Mr. Lyon has, for some time past, been employed as an assistant clerk in the Patent Office: your committee are convinced that his services are necessary, and that he has performed his duty with propriety, without receiving a compensation for the last year; it is, therefore, recommended to Congress to pass the bill reported by the Committee of Claims for his relief. The gross amount of fees received from the commencement of the establishment to the 31st of December, 1811, per statement B, is $19,110. Of the sums received, after deducting the amount paid for salaries to a clerk, and the moneys necessarily expended for parchment, stationery, printing, fuel, &c., there remains a balance of $25379 34 in the Treasury of the United States, ap: plicable to useful purposes connected with this institution. The statement B demonstrates that the amount annually received for patents issued has increased every succeeding year. and that, in the year 1811, it amounted to $6,810. From these facts your committee augur favorably as to the future. The office has done much more than to support itself: the fund thus created, if properly managed and applied, may hereafter give rise to many valuable institutions in our country. A school of arts may be organized by the Legis: lature, which will require no other pecuniary aid than will be contributed by the industrious, the ingenious, and the useful citizens of the United States. - The resolution submitted offers an extensive and fruitful field for inquiry in a national view. Your committee have ventured to trespass on the ordinary limits of a report, by entering into such details as the case admitted, and the importance of the subject demanded; they are of that class who consider a well regulated conserratory of the arts a highly useful institution. It may be well to ask, what is the design of a depot of the models for which patents are granted Idle curiosity alone cannot have induced the wisest Govern' ments to take them under their special charge; if useful results had not been the consequence 9 such establishments, they would long since have been abandoned. In Europe experience has do; veloped the numerous benefits which are derived from this source every year. In the subsequent part of this report your committee persuade them:

[ocr errors]
[blocks in formation]
[blocks in formation]

school all children may be taught some usesul

trade, to the end that none may be idle, but the poor may work, and the rich, if they become poor, may not want. Your committee made a visit to the present establishment: for its various purposes the West wing of the second floor of the building, heretofore denominated Blodget's hotel, is allotted to the models. This portion of the building consists of four apartments, one of which is 56 feet by 39 feet; another 39 feet by 22 feet; the remaining two rooms 22 feet by 12 feet each, with ceilings well adapted for the purpose. Your committee propose that the two first mentioned rooms shall be appropriated solely for the placing and exhibiting of models; one of the smaller rooms to be occupied as an office by those who conduct the institution; and the other to be used for a library, to be formed of such books as may be deposited to secure the copyright, for charts, &c. The apartments are, at this time, in an unfinished state; workmen are employed to complete them ; a sufficient appropriation for this purpose has been already made by Congress. Many models are already deposited ; the manner in which they are placed tends to confusion, and sink the establishment into contempt. All is chaos—the machines are out of repair, and so intermixed as to make them almost useless. Useful machines are thus kept from view; and, for the want of a proper catalogue, containing a general description of the models, they are not understood. By such means the most beautiful inventions have been brought to ridicule. The despatch, safety, and success of business is promoted by nothing so much as method and regularity. Every visiter ought to be able to derive benefit from this depot: this can only happen where method is attended to. The subjects of this establishment admit of classification, according to fixed and established principles: all the apparatus used in distillation, the machines for cutting nails, for cutting files, for ginning, carding, roving, drawing, spinning, weaving, &c., should be contiguous to each other, and arranged according to the date of the patent. Placed in this manner, there would be a mass of knowledge embodied before the spectator; the arts would be easily traced; the machines would thus be advertised, as it were, and every one would go away much more informed than when they went into these apartments. The present prevalent confusion in some degree depends upon circumstances; when the machines were formerly deposited, near the Department of State, the room was much too limited; the machines were heaped together, and many of them were deranged in their several parts. The unfinished state of the present building will keep the models for a further time in a state of irregularity: it

is to be hoped that habit will not operate to make this perpetual. Success in this institution depends much upon the competency of the person or persons who are to conduct it; they should be liberal in all their views; nowise ambitious to become patentees themselves; no jealousies should exist between them and inventors; to the latter every facility should be offered, and every aid given; because, often they are men of limited knowledge, and need the assistance of others in their specifications, &c. Under such guidance the institution will be promoted, and useful knowledge diffused throughout our extensive country. To impose upon ourselves the task of proving the utility of this institution may, to many, appear idle and unnecessary. We have determined on the inquiry, and solicit your indulgence on the subject. By the acts which Congress have passed, relative to patents, it is indirectly provided that such a depot shall be formed. In the United States no patent can issue to guaranty a mere principle, it “must be for the vendible matter;” hence the necessity of a conservatory to prove the facts in disputed cases; the act further requires models to be deposited, in such cases as the Secretary of State shall deem necessary. The arts have ever been patronised and protected by civilized nations; the ancient Republics bestowed much upon the fine arts; at this time our object should be to promote those which are termed useful. Though we cannot but admire the taste and genius of a Pericles, or a Phidias, we deem it more consistent with the state of society and manners, in the United States, to mark with distinguished honors an Arkwright, a Bolton, a Watt, a Wedgewood, a Whitney, a Fulton, a Whittemore, an Evans, and a host of others, who compose the class of benefactors of the human race; their inventions not only astonish and confound by the intricacy of their structure, and the delicacy of their execution—they do more, they enrich a people, and constitute the formidable pillars of national independence; useful machinery excite human industry, circulate capital, expand the wings of commerce, and carry us to the remotest regions of the habitable world. The progress of the arts of civilization keep pace with each other; the arts are favorable to civil liberty; they alone give rise to internal improvements; and that nation is, of all others, the most certain of pros. perity, by which these principles are well understood, and put into practice. America cherishes peace; circumstances may force her into a war; even in that state of things her arts will achieve more lasting advantages for her than did the conquests of Alexander, a Caesar, or a Zengis Khan . Useful inventions of machines are more particularly necessary at this time in the United | States, when much may depend upon our manufactures; all labor-saving machines add so much to our population. We need not dread that riot and famine will follow the introduction of such agents into our work-shops; we should do all in our power to encourage their importation from abroad. In this respect England is an example worthy of imitation; whilst tyranny and oppres

« ForrigeFortsett »