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THE PROCEEDINGS AND DEBATES
HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES OF THE UNITED STATES,
AT THE THIRD SESSION OF THE FIRST CONGRESS, HELD AT PHILADELPHIA,
DECEMBER 6, 1790.
On which day, being the day appointed by (of S. C.) were appointed a committee, to act the adjournment of the two Houses for the with a committee from the Senate, to wait on meeting of the present session, the following the President of the United States, to inform members appeared and took their seats, to wit: him that a quorum of the two Houses is assemFrom New Hampshire-ABIEL FOSTER, NICHOLAS
bled. GILMAN, and SAMUEL LIVERMORE.
A message from the Senate informed the From Massachusetts-FISHER AMES, BENJAMIN | House, that Messrs. LANGDON and MORRIS GOODHUE, and GEORGE THATCHER.
were appointed a committee, to join the comFrom Connecticut-BENJAMIN Huntington, Ro. mittee of this House, to wait upon the PresiGER SAERMAN, and JONATHAN STURGES.
dent. From New York--EGBERT BENSON, WILLIAM Mr. BOUDINOT, from the Joint Committee to FLOYD, JOIN LAWRENCE, and PETER SYLVESTER. wait on the President, reported that the Presi
from New Jersey--Elias Boudinot, LAMBERT dent would attend to make a communication to CADWALADER, and James SCAUREMAX.
both Houses to-morrow, at twelve o'clock, in
WEDNESDAY, December 8.
ELBRIDGE GERRY and JONATHAN GROUT, and James Madison, Junior.
from Massachusetts; Andrew MOORE and From North Carolina—TIMOTHY BLOODWORTH, ALEXANDER WHITE, from Virginia; and Thoand Hugu WILLIAMSON.
MAS Tudor TUCKER, from South Carolina, apFrom South Carolina-WILLIAM Smith.
peared and took their seats. From Georgia--ABRALAM Baldwin.
A message from the Senate informed the number, the House adjourned until to-morrow. receive the usual communication from the PreWhich not forming a quorum of the whole House, that they are ready to meet the mem
bers of this House in the Senate Chamber, to Tuesday, December 7.
sident of the United States.
Mr. SPEAKER, attended by the members of Daniel Heister and Thomas Scott, from this House, then withdrew to the Senate ChamPennsylvania; Richard BLAND LEE, from Vir- ber, for the purpose expressed in the above mesginia; and Daniel Huger, from South Caro.
sage. lina, appeared and took their seats.
And being returned, the SPEAKER laid before WILLIAM B. Giles, from Virginia, returned the House a copy of the Speech, delivered by in the place of THEODORIC BLAND, deceased, the President, (which will be found in the Proalso appeared, produced his credentials, and ceedings of the Senate, page 1770.) took his seat.
Which being read, it was, on motion, comA quorum of members being now present, a mitted to the consideration of a Committee of message was received from the Senate, by Mr. the whole House to-morrow. Otis, their Secretary, informing the House that On motion, a quorum of the Senate is assembled, and ready to proceed to business.
Resolved, That two Chaplains, of different ceno
minations, be appointed to Congress, one by each A message was returned to the Senate, in- House, who shall interchange weekly. forining them that a quorum of this House is Ordered, That a committee be appointed to assembled, and ready to proceed to business.
establishing Messrs. BOUDINOT, LAWRENCE, and Smith, Post-office and post roads of the United States,
H. of R.)
(Dec. 10, 1790.
and that Messrs. SHERMAN, CLYMER, and Wil- representation, it will be worth while for a prinLIAMSON form said committee.
ter to set up a paper merely to supply Congress. NEWSPAPERS FOR MEMBERS.
He said, he was disposed to give encouragement Mr. WILLIAMSON, after some introductory
to the press in printing books which would be observations on the importance of diffusing in really advantageous to the country, by renderformation among the people, and the utility of ing importations unnecessary; but as to news. newspapers for that purpose, inoved,
papers, they are a species of printing which
dies with the day. He mentioned the number That the Clerk of the House be directed to furnish of papers formerly taken by the House, among each of the members with three of the public news- which were some that were never read by any papers printed in this city, at their own election-- body. He was for limiting the number, and the papers to be left at their respective lodgings.
therefore had mentioned three; still he was not Laid on the table.
tenacious of that number; but whatever else was
determined in the business he thought there THURSDAY, December 9.
ought to be a limitation. JAMES Jackson and George Matthews, froin resolution; which being put, was carried in the
Mr. Livermore said, he should vote for the Georgia, appeared and took their seats.
affirmative-22 to 15. ADDRESS TO THE PRESIDENT.
CHAPLAINS. On motion, the House resolved itself into a
A message was received from the Senate, inCommittee of the whole on the speech of the forming that they have concurred in the resoluPresident of the United States, Mr. Liver-tion of the House for the appointment of ChapMORE in the chair. On motion of Mr. Lawrence, the committee Right Reverend Bishop WHITE.
lains; and have, on their part, appointed the agreed to a resolution, which the committee
On motion of Mr. Smith, to-morrow was asrose and reported to the House, which was con- signed by the House for the election of a Chapcurred with as follows:
lain. The Rev. Dr. Blair and the Rev. Mr. Resolved, That it is the opinion of this committee, GREEN were nominated. that an Address ought to be presented by the House
KENTUCKY. to the President of the United States, in answer to A message was received from the President his speech to both Houses, with assurances that this of the United States, with the papers mentionHouse will, without delay, proceed to take into con- ed in his speech, respecting the admission of sideration the various and important matters recom- Kentucky as a member of the Union. mended to their attention.
ELECTORS FOR ELECTING PRESIDENT. And Messrs. Madison, Ames, and Tucker, were appointed to prepare the Address.
Mr. Benson gave notice, that he should move
for a committee to be appointed to bring in a bili NEWSPAPERS FOR MEMBERS.
or bills, for determining the time of choosing the Mr. WILLIAMSON's resolution yesterday laid Electors, in the several States, of President and on the table, in relation to supplying the mem- Vice President; also determining, in case of bers with newspapers, being taken up,
vacancy of the office of President and Vice Mr. Fitzsimons said, he hoped the resolution President, by death, or absence from the seat would not be agreed to. The subject had fre- of Government, who shall exercise the office of quently been discussed, and much expense of President. time had been incurred. For his own part, he
REGISTERING VESSELS. knew of no reasons which existed that should On motion, a committee was appointed, coninduce the House, at this session, to deviate sisting of Messrs. FITZSIMONS, Goodhue, and from former practice, and the custom which LEE, to bring in a bill to amend the act for rehad always been observed by the old Congress. gistering ships and vessels, and regulating the Debating the subject would probably be attend coasting trade, and for other purposes. ed with as much expense as taking the papers
WESTERN EXPEDITION. in the usual way. Mr. Madison offered some objections to the War, addressed to the Speaker, accompanying
A letter was received from the Secretary of motion. He was in favor of taking the whole sundry papers respecting the Western Expediof the publications, or none; as taking a part tion, and the expenses attending the same. would be giving a preference to particular
USEFUL ARTS. presses, and would savor of partiality.. Mr. WILLIAMSON supported the motion. He
On motion of Mr. Williamson, a committee begged gentlemen to consider, that if no limita- was appointed, consisting of Messrs. Wurre, tion was to be set to the number of newspapers; amend' the act to promote the progress of the
Seney, and Baldwin, to bring in a bill to what the expense might amount to. He did not know the exact number printed in the city, useful arts. whether ten or fifteen; but if Congress made it a rule to take all that was, or might be printed,
FRIDAY, December 10. they may be increased to a hundred; and after GEORGE PARTRIDGE, from Massachusetts; the increase of the House, by the addition to the JONATHAN TRUMBULL and JEREMIAH Wads
Dec. 11, 1790.]
Eulogium on Dr. Franklin.
[H. OF R.
WORTH, from Connecticut; Thomas SINNICK MR. PRESIDENT-GENTLEMEN: sox, from New Jersey; and WILLIAM SMITH, The news has reached our ears--FRANKLIN is no from Maryland, appeared and took their seats. more!--FRANKLIN the citizen of the world!-All naCHAPLAIN.
tions are indebted to him for instruction in every The House, according to the order of the day, branch of seience. They are all bound to participroceeded by ballot to the appointment of a pate in the grief occasioned by this common loss. Chaplain to Congress, on the part of this House; monalty of our Capital, thinking it their duty, in ad
But the Assembly of the Representatives of the Comthe votes of the whole House was found in favor dition to the general mourning, to pay to his memory
a further tribute of honor, have ordered, by a public of the Rev. Mr. BLAIR.
decree, that the virtues and talents of this great PhiELECTORS FOR ELECTING PRESIDENT. losopher should be perpetuated to distant ages, in a
Ordered, That a committee be appointed to public and solemn Eulogy--the first of the kind, ever prepare and bring in a bill or bills for deterinin- bestowed by our Nation, on civic worth. ing, agreeable to the provision in the first section By order of the Assembly, I transmit it to your of the second article of the Constitution, the bands; and with the most lively sensations of pleatime when the Electors shall, in the year which sure, embrace the opportunity of paying due homwill terminate on the third of March, one thou- age to a body of men, who not only possess, but are sand seven hundred and ninety-three, and so in justly entitled to enjoy the sweets of Liberty. every fourth year thereafter, be chosen, and the
May the approbation of your Assembly attend as day on which they shall give their votes for de- well the present itself, as the fraternal and respectclaring what officer shall, in case of vacancy
ful sentiments, with which
I am, Mr. President--Gentlemen, both in the office of President and Vice Presi
Your most obedient humble servant, dent, act as President; for assigning a public
BENIERE, office, where the lists mentioned in the second
Doctor of the Sorbonne, Suppletory Member paragraph of the first section of the second ar
of the National Assembly, and President ticle of the Constitution, shall, in case of va
of the Commonalty of Paris. cancy in the office of the President of the Se- To the PRESIDENT AND CONGRESS nate, or his absence from the seat of Govern
of the United States. ment, be in the mean time deposited; and for
The letter accompanied twenty-six copies of directing the mode in which such lists shall be the Eulogium on Dr. Franklin,
delivered by transmitted; and that Messrs. Benson, Hunt- the Abbé Fauchet, pursuant to a decree of that INGTON, HEISTER, Moore, and PARTRIDGE, be
body. of the said committee.
Mr. Boudinot proposed that thirteen copies UNIFORM MILITIA. Ordered, That a committee be appointed to the United States and the Senate, which was
of the Eulogium be returned to the President of prepare and bring in a bill or bills more effectu
done. ally to provide for the national defence, by establishing a uniform militia throughout the United be proper to request the President of the United
Mr. Smith (of S. C.) observed, that it would States; and that Messrs. Bou DINOT, P. Mur- States to return an answer to the President and LENBERG, GILMAN, Floyd, Grout, WADS- | Commonalty of Paris, or that a Joint Commit, WORTH, Smith, of Maryland, BLOODWORTH, tee of the House and Senate should be appointed Gues, SMITH, 'of South Carolina, and Mat- for the purpose. He was not tenacious of any Thews, be of the said committee.
particular mode, but supposed it highly proper EULOGIUM ON FRANKLIN.
that some notice should be taken of the polite A message from the Senate conveyed to the attention shown the Government, by the PresiHouse, a letter from Monsieur Beniere, President of the Commonalty of Paris. The business dent of the Commonalty of Paris, addressed to was specially committed to the SPEAKER. the President and Members of Congress of the A letter was received from the Commissioners United States, with twenty-six copies of a Civic of the city and county of Philadelptria, giving an Eulogium on Benjamin Franklin, pronounced account of the measures taken to accommodate the twenty-first of July, one thousand seven the Federal Legislature, during their residence bundred and ninety, in the name of the Com- in Philadelphia, by preparing the new Courtmonalty of Paris, by Monsieur the Abbé Fauchet. house in the best manner the size of the build
ADDRESS TO THE PRESIDENT. ing would permit, and appropriating the same to Mr. MADISON, from the committee appointed, their use. presented an Address to the President of the Agreeably to the order of the day, the House United States, in answer to his speech to both resolved itself into a Committee of the whole, Houses of Congress, which was read, and or- to take into consideration the Address to the dered to be committed to a Committee of the President of the United States, in answer to whole House to-morrow.
his speech to both Houses, as reported yester
day. Mr. LIVERMORE in the chair. SATURDAY, December 11.
The Address was read by the Clerk, and then A translation of the Letter from the Presi- discussed by the committee in paragraphs. dent of the Commonalty of Paris, addressed to On reading the clause respecting the Western the Federal Legislature, was read as follows: expedition against the Indians,
H. OF R.)
Address to the President.
(Dec. 11, 1791.
Mr. Jackson rose and observed, that he was He said, he would not at present engross any as fully impressed with the importance of an In- more of the time of the House, only to give nodian war, and of extending the protection of tice that, at a future opportunity, he should move Governinent to our defenceless frontiers, as any that the President of the United States be reman whatever; and had no doubt of the neces- quested to lay before the House, for their consisity of the measures taken to chastise the ban-deration, the Treaty with the Creek Indiansditti on the Ohio; but as a Representative from not excepting the secret articles. the State of Georgia, he should think himself in- The paragraph respecting encouraging our excusable were he not to express his astonish- own navigation being read, ment that no notice is taken in the President's Mr. SMITH (of s. C.) observed, that he did speech of the Treaty with the Creek Nation; a not rise to propose any alterations in the style treaty which has spread alarm among the people of the Address, the language was such as might of that State-a treaty by which more than three be expected from the acknowledged abilities of million acres of land, the property of the State the gentleman who drafted it. The paragraph of Georgia, guarantied to that State by the Con- just read, he conceived, pledged the House to stitution of the United States, are ceded away take measures in respect to our own navigation, without any compensation. Mr.J. then advert- which may, in the issue, prove injurious to the ed to several articles of the treaty, which he said agricultural interests of the United States. At controverted the plainest principles of the Con- this early period of the session, it appeared exstitution, particularly those parts which secure tremely improper for the House to commit itto every citizen the rights of property: He con- self, especially as few, if any of the States, are · trasted the present situation of the inhabitants fully represented on the floor. He was afraid of Georgia, with what it was under the British that the mode of expression adopted in the AdGovernment, and said this treaty placed them in dress would conduce to the exclusion of foreign a less eligible situation, in respect to the Indians. bottoms altogether. If the opinion of the com
It had been said, exclaimed he, that there are mittee should be adopted by the House, he consecret articles in the treaty. Good God! at this ceived it would be anticipating a decision to the early period, are there to be secret articles ex- precluding future discussions of the subject. isting between the United States and any other He foresaw that this paragraph would be called Nation under heaven! Treaties by the Con- up at some future period, and brought as an arstitution are to be considered the supreme law gument against any different propositions that of the land; but will Congress permit the laws inight be offered—and thus the question be deof the United States, like those of Caligula, to termined without any debate. He thought the be placed where they cannot be read, and then Address went into too minute a consideration punish the people for not obeying them? The of the several parts of the speech, and could people will never submit to be bound by secret have wished that more general terms had been articles.
used. As a substitute for the paragraph under (Here the Chairman interrupted Mr. Jack consideration, he moved the following amendson, by inquiring whether his observations were ment in substance: intended as introductory to any motion on the “ We shall consider with attention the best means paragraph just read.)
of guarding against the embarrassments you menMr. J. replied, that it was his intention, at a tion, and will take such measures as may remove future day, to introduce a motion, that the Pre- every obstruction to the prosperity of the commerce sident be requested to lay before this House the and agriculture of the United States." treaty with the Creek Indians-not excepting Mr. Williamson observed, that he saw no the secret articles. He then expatiated on the material difference between the paragraph in the sufferings of the people of Georgia, and asked Report, and the amendment proposed. The what must be their feelings, when they reflect mode of expression adopted by the committee is on the preparations made to chastise the Wa- in so general terms, that he hoped it would have bash banditti, while the exertions of Congress met the full approbation of every member of have not been called forth to their relief. The the committee. The President proposes that President sent three Commissioners to Georgia the commerce of the United States should be (not one of whom was a citizen of that State) relieved from all injurious restrictions; nothing they investigated the truth of her representa- can be more just and reasonable; and this is tions, and made a report favorable to her claims, perfectly compatible with supporting the agrithat the lands in dispute were fairly purchased, cultural interest of the country; the promotion and as fully obtained as the Confederation, or of the former involves that of the latter. He the nature of the case would admit; but what touched on the impositions of Great Britain on has been the result? The treaty, so far from our commerce, and observed, that reason and recognizing the rights of Georgia, has sacrificed justice point out the propriety of seeking rethem—the Report of the Commissioners does dress. "He, however, saw no opposition in the not appear to have been attended to. On the two propositions; but as the obvious design in other hand, a savage of the Creeks has been in bringing forward the substitute is to preclude
ted and brought to the seat of Government, such an inquiry as the exigency of the case and there loaded with favors, and caressed in seems to require, he hoped it would not be the most extraordinary manner.
Dec. 11, 1790.]
Address to the President.
[H. OF R.
Mr. JACKSON observed, that he had seconded ing the fact, he inquired, what could be done the motion of the gentleman from South Caro- with the Southern produce, in case of the exlina, because he thought there was an obvious clusion of foreign bottoms. It must rot in the difference in the two modes of expression. He planter's hands. With respect to the amendthen entered into a discussion of the subject ge- ment's being as positive as the clause in the Renerally; and enlarged on the injurious conse- port, as had been asserted, if that is the case he quences which would result to the Southern could see no objection to its being adopted. States particularly, by enhancing the duties on Mr. Tucker said, he thought it improper that foreign bottoms. He said, that the tonnage was in an Address on this occasion the committee at present so high as to prevent foreigners from should go into a particular detail on every subbecoming our carriers; several instances of this ject; much less commit their judgment without had been mentioned to him from good authori- a previous discussion. The President may ty; and while the American shipping was in- have maturely considered the subject during competent to the object, and he called on gen- the recess—but the committee cannot be suptlemen to show that it was, the exclusion of fo- posed to be prepared for a decision. The thinreign ships from our ports must be ruinous to ness of the House was a further objection, in South Carolina and Georgia; therefore, he his opinion, to entering into a discussion of the hoped, the amendment would take place. question. He was not pleased with the para
Mr. Sherman said, that the words in the Re graph in the Report, as it seemed to imply that port appeared to him less exceptionable than nothing had been done for the encouragement those in the proposed amendment, even on the of our own navigation, the reverse of which was principle supported by the gentleman in favor fact. The posture of affairs in Europe suggestof the amendment. In the Report it was only ed no stronger reasons for giving further ensaid, we should consider what ineans, &c. but couragement to our own navigation than what the amendment declared we should take effec. was presented last session; the expediency of tual measures. The words in the Report only the measure is not therefore apparent from any binding us to consider—those in the amendment change of circumstances. Though he was disobliging us to act. He thought the answer satisfied with the Report, the amendment proshould be general, and was therefore against the posed fell short of his wishes. It did not reamendment.
cognise what had been done for the encourageMr. Smith (of S.C.) observed, that the mem- ment of American shipping. He would, thereber last up had confined his observation to the fore, propose a substitute by leave of his colfirst words in the paragraph objected to. If he league; which he did to the following purport: will take the trouble of reading a little further, “The encouragement of our own navigation has he will see, that as the Report stands we give it at all times appeared to us highly important, as our opinion, that foreign bottoms ought to be and has employed a large share of our deliberaexcluded, which would be severely felt by the tions; we shall continue to pay due attention to States of South Carolina and Georgia. We the subject, and consider by what means our cannot wholly depend upon our own vessels for commerce and agriculture may be best prothe exportation of our produce; they are not suf-moted.” ficiently numerous, nor will they be for many Mr. Smith withdrew his motion, to admit years; therefore, let us not at this time, in a Mr. Tucker’s. hasty manner, declare, that all articles export- Mr. Seney said, he could not conceive what ed shall be carried in our own bottoms.' To ground of apprehension there was in the Adsettle this important question, Mr. S. thought dress, to lead gentlemen to suppose that the that some time should be given to reflect, and a opinion of the House would be committed by day fixed for discussion; in the mean time, he its adoption. He thought it couched in the most thought it improper at this stage of the session, general and unexceptionable terms. The amendthat the opinion of the House should be given. ment proposed he did not think essentially va
Mr. Williamson remarked, that the Report riant from the paragraph under consideration; did not say that we should have no dependence but as the original was well expressed, he saw on foreign bottoms; but that we should not de- no reason for expunging the clause; it containpend altogether upon them for the exportation ed an assertion, the truth of which he supposed of our produce. He had no idea of excluding would not be controverted. As to the objecforeign bottoms. He was for making provision tion against going into a detail of particulars, it in case that resource should fail.
was fully justified by precedent in the last AdMr. JACKSON.–To show the importance of dress; the gentleman from South Carolina, he foreign shipping to the Southern States, and the will recollect, was on the committee who framed inadequacy of our own, to transport their pro- it; that Address more pointedly committed the duce, notwithstanding the low duty on Ameri- House than the present. can shipping, Mr.J. read a statement of the ton- Mr. Madison thought proper to take some nonage duties paid by each, in the State of Geor- tice of the objections that had been made to the gia, for the same period; the foreign tonnage Report. There were two modes of proceeding, amounted to eight thousand two hundred and which might be adopted in drawing up the antwenty-seven dollars, the American to six hun-swer. The first method was generally to dedred and twenty-nine dollars only. This be- clare, that the House would take into their