« ForrigeFortsett »
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[JANUARY, 1797. eight men to be added to each company. He hoped been the information transmitted to the War Ofthe motion would therefore be disagreed to. fice which otherwise would have been there. Mr. VARNUM did not think it necessary for the The select committee, for their ow
wn satisfacCommittee to rise, but it appeared necessary that tion, with such assistance as they could get, had they should be in possession of the calculations of made a calculation of the number of posts, and the select committee, of the number of garrisons the men which would be requisite for each. The and of the men necessary for each. Except they posts in their contemplation were Oswego, Niahad some information of this kind, they could not gara, Presqu’ Isle, Detroit
, Miami, Michilimackiform a just opinion on the subject. It must be nac, a post near Lake Erie, a post not far from the desire, he said. of every gentleman, that the the mouth of the Illinois, at the Natchez, a post Military Establishment should be reduced as low a little below the river Ohio, frontier of Tennesas possible; but without the information he had see, frontier of Georgia; Fort Washington, on mentioned, it would not be possible to have a cor- the river Ohio; a small post near Fort Pitt, at rect idea on the subject.
Pittsburg; and the fortifications and harbors of Mr. READ observed, that gentlemen said we the seacoast. were at peace with the Indian tribes. Be it
so, The estimate of the garrisons necessary for said he, and let the most effectual measures be these posts was mere matter of opinion, and every taken to preserve the peace. The Indians, he gentleman could form his own. It was his opinion said, had a very favorable opinion of Continental that the number requisite for all these places troops; they considered them as their safeguard. would be about the number of the present estabPerhaps they were a little jealous of the militia. lishment, the cavalry excepted. At the Natchez It was a measure of policy to keep up the Con- he believed there would be occasion for a very tinental troops. They might prevent the Indians considerable garrison, as there were a number of from injuring the frontier inhabitants, or they citizens there, lately subjects of Spain, who could, them. He did not think it would be prudent to at a short notice, raise a militia of eight hundred reduce the Military Establishment.
Mr. Gallatin said, he saw by the report of the Mr. D. said, although he had been in favor of a committee, that they proposed to add eight men to small number of men and for a small number of a company; the motion of the gentleman from garrisons, yet he was inclined to believe that the New York brought the discussion fairly before number of troops remaining, after the cavalry them, and they could determine whether eight was deducted, would not be greater than our premen should be added to each company, or whether sent circumstances required. He was of opinion, the four regiments should be reduced to two. however, that if the established corps be kept full
The select committee, he said, had brought for- and the posts established, and more opportunity ward no estimates. The chairman of that com- was had of knowing what was necessary, perhaps mittee [Mr. S. SMITH) had said, that it was not there might be a possibility of reducing the numpossible to obtain information of the number of ber with propriety; but he could not say at premen to pay, or where they were at this time; but, sent there would be too great a number, and if this information could not be obtained, he was should, therefore, be against reducing them. sure that it was possible that the number of posts It would be important for gentlemen to agree might be told, and the number of troops required what number of men was necessary for each garfor each. When they had such information be- rison, and consequently what number for the Mifore them, they would be able, he said, to deter-litary Establishment at large. He supposed, from mine whether the Military Establishment ought the calculation of last year, the present number to be reduced or increased.
was considerably under three thousand. On the In order to obtain this information, he wished 1st of July last there were a few over three thouthe Committee to rise; but if the select committee sand; but, after the terms of men whose terms thought none could be obtained—that the Secre- expired a few months afterwards, and from detary of War cannot, or will not, for some reason sertions and other circumstances, they did not, he not to be communicated, give any particulars on supposed, exceed two thousand. But since the the subject, if he had no further information, he new organization took place a number of men should vote for the motion of the gentleman from and officers had not joined their corps, and until New York. And if the gentlemen of the com- that took place no accurate accounts could be mittee have no more, and can get no more infor- had. The saving of the expense of two regimation, it would be best to go on to a conclusion ments he acknowledged would be a considerable of the business.
object, if it could be done with propriety; but he The motion for the Committee to rise was put did not think it would be proper at this time to and negatived-55 to 29.
reduce them. Mr. Dearborn said, it was not in the power, he Mr. Gallatin said, from what had fallen from believed, of the Secretary of War, to give just the gentleman from Massachusetts, there could be information as to the number of posts to be gar- no doubt but the present number of troops would risoned, or the number of men to be placed in be useful, and that it would be inconvenient to each. It appeared that a very general discretion reduce them; but, upon the same ground, the bad been given to the Commander-in-Chief. He number of troops might even be increased beyond had made such arrangements as he thought pro- the present establishment, when it was considered per; but having died on his way, there had not the number of posts which had come into our
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hands, and consequently the number of men re- tablishment, and after admitting that a reduction quired for them. Nor would he wish to reduce of two regiments would be inconvenient to the the Military Establishment, but for other reasons. service, should avow his support of the motion. He did not think, in the present situation of our That astonishment was not lessened upon hearing foreign affairs, it would be at all prudent to re- the reason that had been assigned for it, viz: a duce the artillery
manifest reluctance on the part of the House to There was another consideration, however, that increase the revenues. If that member had rewould induce him to vote for the present motion, presented accurately the disposition of the House or something like it: it was the reluctance which as to revenue, he would have said, not that there was shown in that House to raise the necessary was a reluctance to increase it, but more truly revenue for the expenses of Government. Not that there was a reluctance to increase it in the withstanding our situation had been fully stated, mode proposed and advocated by that gentleman, it was with immense difficulty any measure could a tax on lands. Mr. D. said, that he himself
, for be got through the House which was intended to one, had admitted the necessity of a further augraise revenue; they had even a right to conclude mentation, but in common with many other memthat the measure which was lately carried through bers, he had expressed his unwillingness to resort the House for direct taxes, would not be agreed to direct taxation, until the lessexceptionable means to when the detail of the bill should be brought of raising money by indirect taxes had been tried in. He thought, therefore, they should confine and exhausted. As to the motion which went to rethemselves, not to what was useful, but to what duce the infantry from 2,000 to 1,000 men, he could was absolutely necessary.
not believe there was any probability of its sucNo resolution had hitherto been brought for- ceeding, as both the public service and the geneward to diminish the expense of aay department. ral economy forbade it. The member from MasHe would ask, in what department the expense sachusetts had enumerated many posts, and some could be diminished? The public engagements very considerable, where it would be requisite to must be kept. The Civil List might, perhaps, support garrisons, and others might be added to give a saving of $20,000. They were called upon the list. The frontier of Georgia, Oswego, Fort to increase instead of diminishing the expenses. Schuyler, West Point, the fortifications along the There were other demands this year. There seacoast, and the different arsenals and magazines were only two objects, he believed, in which re- of arms, ammunition, &c., would equally require trenchments could be made, which were the Mi- garrisons of soldiers. litary and Naval Establishments.
Their present number of two thousand infantry Mr. G. said, he had no doubt two thousand men and nine hundred artillerists and engineers, would would garrison our posts, &c., better than one not be found more than sufficient for the service, thousand, but be thought one thousand might especially when it was considered that the casualserve in our present circumstances. Amongst ties of desertion and sickness which prevailed to others, he did not think it necessary to have a post a certain extent in every army, must also be at Illinois or Michilimackinac, or to have a large guarded against, by increasing the establishment one at the Natchez. As to the number of men beyond the numbers which upon strict calculation necessary at the different posts, it was, as it had might be adjudged to be pecessary. Escorts also been stated, mere matter of opinion. They knew were indispensable in all cases of transportation of no force required against the Indians, and a from one part of their wilderness to another, and small body was, therefore, only necessary to be more especially when owing to want of waterkept in garrison. With respect to other nations, communication, or an unexpected lowness of the he did not believe the British had any force on streams, or to the obstructions from ice, they the frontiers. He, therefore, thought there was were compelled to transport their supplies by no occasion for a greater number than in 1792, land. The reasoning which he adduced when which was 2,250 men; the number now the reduction of the cavalry was in question, 3,160, which made a difference of 910, the num- would here apply with greater strength, because ber now moved to be struck out. However, he the necessity of keeping up some regiments of indid believe that if they were to make the re- fantry was admitted by all. To discharge the duction it would be best done by degrees; and regular troops, and to be obliged, as heretofore, to perhaps the best way would be not to make fur supply their place with militia, would be found iher enlistments when the time of men expired. to be profusion rather than economy. But, if there was any doubt on the propriety of Mr. S. SMITH said, the gentleman from Pennreducing the number of men, there could be no sylvania [Mr. Gallatin) had used the only solid impolicy in striking out a number of officers. argument for reducing the Military Establish
From these considerations he believed it would ment, viz: the unwillingness of the House to be most prudent to make the proposed reduction, provide revenue. It was a solid argument. But, though, had it not been for the depressed state of he said, it was necessary for them to provide for our revenues, he should rather have been for in- all the wants of the country; it was necessary to creasing than for diminishing the present estab- afford protection to our frontier, and, after they lishment.
had provided that protection, he trusted that Mr. Dayron was much surprised that the gen- House would not be so lost to its duty as to fail tleman from Pennsylvana, after acknowledging in providing revenue. that it would be useful to keep up the present es
From the Civil List, the gentleman from Pennsyl
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vania had observed there could be little reduction; plete the frigates than was proposed at first, as neno saving but from the Military Establishment; cessary for the building of them. He hoped, but this might be made without any reduction. therefore, they would not at present be proceeded The Major and his Staff, which were proposed to with. be struck out, would be a saving of upwards of Mr. CRAIK said, he had not intended to have $11,600; the light dragoons were $51,000 or $52,- spoken on the present occasion; but when he 000; the rations, calculated at 20 cents, might now heard arguments against fixing a Military Estabbe obtained at 17 cents, which would lessen the lishment necessary for our security, founded on a charge $42,000; the Quartermaster's department supposed unwillingness in the House to grant rewas now $250,000, but now it might be reduced venue, he could not be silent. He believed the to $100,000; but, if estimated at $150,000, there opinion entertained of that House with respect to would be a saving of $100,000; the carting, at revenue could not be extended to the people. He $50,000, would not now be one-half. The Naval was confident they were willing to afford a suffiDepartment for the present year was calculated cient revenue for every necessary purpose of Goupon twelve months, when it was scarcely possi- vernment, and he trusted that House would also ble, from the state of the frigates, that they would be found to be so too. Indeed, he did not think be fit for more than four months' service.
there was ground for the disgraceful opinion The whole of these items made a sum of which the gentleman from Pennsylvania [Mr. $403,000; to which he believed might be added Gallatin] had formed with respect to the reluca saving in the Civil List of $62,000. The tance of the House to grant revenue. Mint Establishment he did not think necessary, They had discussed the means of raising rethough it might flatter our vanity, and $25,000 venue, and seemed only to differ in opinion about might be saved from that source. The savings the mode of doing it. The people who sent them he had mentioned in the Military Establishment there were able and willing to pay whatever might be much more, because any loss on ac- should be found to be necessary, and he hoped count of the contract would fall upon the con- the want of revenue would not be urged as a reatractors and not upon Government. But he son for not doing what they were convinced it trusted they should not make deductions in the was necessary to do. establishment which might put the Government If this principle was adopted, he said, it might itself into jeopardy. With respect to the sug- be extended to every measure brought forward gestion of striking out officers, he would rather this session. He hoped, therefore, it would not have skeletons of regiments, which might be at be countenanced. If the Military Establishment any time filled up; for he believed more men was necessary our interest required it should be were lost for want of proper officers than by the made sufficient, and it would be an injury to the sword.
Union not to make it so. He trusted they should Mr. Nicholas said, that the opinion of the do it, and he was not afraid that the money gentleman from Pennsylvania (Mr. GallaTIN] would not be found. He did not believe this that though a greater number of men might be country to be in a state of bankruptcy, but that necessary, yet it was necessary they should be less it was equal and willing to pay every necessary sened on account of the unwillingness of that expense of its Government. House to provide revenue, had not been invalida- Mr. Dayton said, that if there was a single trait ted by what had fallen from the gentleman from of candor in the remarks made by the gentleman New Jersey, (Mr. Dayton;] for, though that gen- from Virginia and applied to him, then he was tleman had strongly opposed direct taxes, he had ignorant of the real meaning of the word, and he offered no substitute for them. Indeed, none had knew not what language and what conduct merbeen offered except that proposed by the gentle- ited a different appellation. It was more than unman from South Carolina [Mr. HARPER) and he candid, it was cruel to upbraid him with not havseemed to have grown lukewarm in its support. ing done what he had no opportunity, consistently And was it to be expected, he said, that when with the rules of the House, to have done. Every permission to bring in a bill on the subject had member, Mr. D. said, who had held a seat there only been obtained by a majority of ten votes, only for a few hours, must know that being in the when the passage of the plan for a direct tax had chair he had it not in his power to offer any proþeen so difficult in that stage of it, was it not to positions to the House to be referred to the Combe supposed that there was great hazard of its mittee of the Whole on the subject of further repassing? And, if so, was it not incumbent upon venues, as had been their regular course of prothe House, lest additional revenue should not be ceeding. In Committee of the Whole, where provided, to make every saving in their power ? | alone he could make any motion, it would be reHe believed it was. He did not wish to put Go-collected that no opening had been afforded him; vernment in jeopardy, but he thought they were for the first resolution reported by the Committee called upon to save every shilling in their power. of Ways and Means in favor of a land tax was unHe hoped they should go further with respect to der discussion, and it would have been a violathe Navy, than had been proposed by the gentletion of their rules of order to have offered any man from Maryland. He had contemplated four other as a substitute. It would be remembered, months' service of the frigates; but he hoped also, that the moment that proposition was decided, they should have none at all
, since it would be the Committee of the Whole rose and reported found that more money was now wanted to com-l thus postponing to a future day the consideration JANUARY, 1797.)
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other resources. It was also possible, Mr. prudent to make frequent calls upon the militia, D. said, that if there had been an opportunity to and by that means put the country to unnecessary present any system of his own, it might have been expense. If it were not, it was proper there should useless and unnecessary until that offered by the be a permanent force to prevent the necessity of gentleman from South Carolina had been discuss- such calls. ed and decided. Why, he asked, should he be Whenever the subject of taxation came up, Mr. charged with silence or forbearance in such point- S. said, he trusted they should determine upon ed terms by the gentleman from Virginia, when it some permanent source of revenue; for if genwas well known to every member, that they were tlemen adopted such as were not so, they would enjoined upon him by the duties of his station, have to be responsible for the consequences. and the rules of decorum ?
Mr. Gallatin said, his colleague [Mr. SwanMr. RUTHERFORD said, he paid great respect to WICK] had, in one respect, put the question on its the opinions of every gentleman in that House; true ground, though in another point he was misbut he must think for himself on the present oc- taken, viz: where he said, that if the House votcasion. Was this people, he asked, to be supported for a certain number of men, and their funds ed by a few regular troops ? No: whilst the yeo- should fall short, the money could be applied no manry, and the people in general, delighted in the further than it would go, and their object would Government, they would always be ready to rise be defeated. On the contrary, Mr. G. said, if they as one man in support of it. Let the people have voted a greater number of men than the revenue peace, and acquire property, said he, and they will was found equal to pay, the same thing would be defend themselves. The late insurrection, beyond done which had been done heretofore-anticipathe mountains, had proved this; and this would tions would be obtained. But the question was continue to be the case whilst they were well go- upon its true ground when he said, that if they verned. What need was there then to rely upon voted a number of men, they stood pledged to inregular troops ?
crease the revenue in order to meet the expense. At a time when they were about to tax the peo- He did not think the gentleman from New Jersey ple, it was necessary to reduce this article of ex- was correct in his remarks upon what he had said. pense.
Mr. G. said, when he was up before he had obMr. Nicholas said, if he had been convinced served, that there was a reluctance to raise addithe gentleman from New Jersey (Mr. Dayton] tional revenue, there having been a bare majority had not had an opportunity of bringing forward in favor of direct taxes, and he believed there was any. proposition as a substitute for the direct tax, as great a reluctance with respect to indirect taxwhich he had opposed, he certainly should not es. They differed so much about the mode of have charged him with having failed to do it. But raising revenue, that it would be difficult to raise he thought it was possible for him to have done it; revenue at all. The plan which that gentleman if he was mistaken in point of form, he must chose to call his plan, was founded upon a report stand corrected. He did not mean any thing un- of the Secretary of the Treasury, which had been candid with respect to that gentleman.
made in pursuance of an order of that House, on Mr. SWANWICK did not conceive that the ques- the subject of direct taxation. It was true he was tion of revenue had any thing to do in the present in favor of the plan, but it was not his. business. The question was, whether they should Finally, if they voted for continuing the present have four or two regiments of infantry? Not be- military force, they pledge themselves to furnish ing a military man, he did not feel himself very additional revenue, and except they agree to assist competent to decide on the present question. them in carrying into effect the plan which had Whatever disposition, however, might have been been adopted, he believed no other would prove shown on a former occasion, of an unwillingness effectual. to raise revenue, he trusted they should grant libe- Mr. Williams said, when he made the present rally and cheerfully what was necessary for the motion, there was no information before the House. defence of our frontiers; and when they came to He wished, therefore, to have reduced the estabbe upon the subject of raising revenue, he trusted lishment to what it was in the year 1792, except they should be impelled by the same necessity- he could hear some reason for making it greater, the necessity of doing what they were convinced | Previous to his motion, the gentleman from Maswas right-to grant what appeared to be necessa- sachusetts had not informed them what posts the ry. He thought there was no way of raising this committee had in contemplation to garrison. He revenue but by direct taxes; other gentlemen confessed, the account he had since given seemed thought differently; but raised, additional revenue to show that more than one regiment was necesmust be; for, if they made these grants, and there sary; but, notwithstanding the observations of that was not money in the Treasury to pay the ex- gentleman, he was of opinion that the four regipense, they could only be carried into effect soments might be reduced to two, and the same far as the funds would go; and gentlemen would number of men now employed might be put into therefore take this consequence upon themselves those regiments, by which means all the force when revenue came under consideration. The would be retained, and the expense lessened. He question now was, whether they should have four asked, if the posts to be kept up required all the regiments or two? He thought the latter number officers in the present establishment, and whether was too small. He had heard of the power of 2,500 men required so many officers to command the militia ; but he did not know whether it was I them? He believed not; and that a considerable
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[JANUARY, 1797. saving would be made by putting all the men into ject of revenue-as illicit importations are not to be two regiments.
apprehended—the extent to which the duty is to be carWhen he made the motion, he said, it was prin- ried, can be best determined by the committee. One cipally with a view of getting information what cent on each fifty-six pounds of salt, will produce number of troops was necessary, and where they nearly thirty thousand dollars. were to be stationed. If, he said, there was sup
It will, however, be proper to readjust the bounties posed to be danger from our situation with respect the allowances to vessels employed in the cod fisheries,
on the exportation of salted fish and provisions, and to Europe, it was not necessary to increase troops which were intended to be employed only on the to any augmentation of the duties on this article. frontier. Surely not. If danger was apprehended
2d. Brown SUGAR.—The duties on sugars will from that quarter, they ought to turn their eyes hereafter require revision; the rates, now imposed, are to the sea-coast, and increase our artillery and en- as follow: on brown sugar one and one half cent per gineers. Those gentlemen who thought a Navy pound ; clayed sugar, three and one-half cents; lump necessary, might put to that object what was saved sugar and refined, other than loaf sugar, six and one in the present. This, he said, would be much half cents ; loaf refined sugar, nine cents. The duties
are already so high, that most of the sugars, other than more prudent; since, standing on our own ground, brown, which are imported, are also exported; the revewecould defend ourselves against the whole world.
nue is not therefore benefited by the importations. On The question for reducing the four regiments of the contrary, the public are exposed to the risk of colinfantry to two was put and negatived, there be- lection, and responsible for the drawback. Illicit iming only 25 in favor of it.
portations cannot be easily practised in respect to so The Committee then rose, and had leave to sit bulky an article as sugar, and it is not likely that they again.
have been practised, except in a smalỊ degree with re
spect to loaf refined sugar, the duty on which appears ADDITIONAL DUTIES.
to be more than necessary to protect the business of Mr. W. Smita, Chairman of the Committee of domestic refiners. Ways and Means, to whom was referred a resolu- To induce the consumption of any considerable quantion of the 10th instant on dutiable articles im- tities of clayed sugars, a reduction of the duty is necesported, made the following report:
sary: and it is probable that some reduction would be “ The Committee of Ways and Means having taken favorable to the interest of the refiners ; on this point,
into consideration the resolution of the House of my information is however too imperfect to justify a the tenth instant, and a Letter of the Secretary of positive opinion. the Treasury on the subject therein contained, are The present duty on brown sugar is less in proporof opinion:
tion to the value of the article than that on most other “ That the only articles, on which it will be expedi- West India productions. The average importations of ent to impose an additional impost duty, are the follow- brown sugar into the United States, during the years ing, viz: brown sugar, bohea tea, and cotton goods, not 1790, 1791, and 1792, were about twenty-two milprinted, stained, or colored: They accordingly submit lions of pounds weight, which, therefore, may be conthe following resolutions :
sidered as the quantity usually consumed in this counResolved, That there be paid an additional duty of try in each year. Since 1792, the quantities imported one half cent per pound on brown sugar, imported into have been increasing. In the term of a year, prior to the United States.
October 1st, 1795, the quantity imported exceeded “ Resolved, That there be laid an additional duty of sixty millions of pounds weight. During the greater two cents per pound on all bohea teas imported into part of the year 1796, sugar and coffee were the most the United States.
beneficial, and in point of value, equal to any articles “ Resolved, That there be laid an additional duty of exported from the United States ; considering the great two and a half per cent., ad valorem, on all coiton quantities of these articles which have been imported, goods not printed, stained, or colored, imported into exceeding what were required for domestic consumpthe United States.'
tton, their prices must have been determined by the
state of foreign demand. These prices cannot thereTREABURY DEPARTMENT, Jan. 19, 1797.
fore be stationary, and their vibrations have a tendency SIR: I have now the honor to communicate my to embarrass commerce. These circumstances, and opinion on the subject referred to the Committee of the risk to which the revenue is exposed on the importWays and Means by the resolution of the House of ation, and also on the exportation of these articles, Representatives of the 10th of January, 1797. strongly admonish against excessive duties, and even
If it shall be determined to increase the duties on dissuade from the imposition of such a duty, as under importations, the following appear to be most safe and other circumstances might be safe and proper ; neverproductive objects of revenue:
theless, an additional duty of one half cent per pound, 1st. SALT.—The existing duty is twelve cents upon on brown sugar, appears to be as eligible as any which each bushel of fifty-six pounds, and is much lower than can be suggested. what is imposed in many countries. There is no arti- 3d. Tras.—The duties are at present as follow : on cle of which the consumption is more uniform, nor of bohea tea, ten cents per pound; on souchong and other which an evasion of the duties would be more difficult: black teas, eighteen cents; on hyson, imperial, gunthe natural value being inconsiderable, the importation powder, or Gomee tea, forty cents; and on other green requires and employs but little capital. Owing to the teas, twenty-four cents. It has been stated, as the bulky nature of most of our articles of export, com- opinion of the Treasury, that the revenue would be pared with those imported, and to the use of sait in lieu probably benefited by a reduction of the higher and an of ballast, it is introduced with a moderate charge for increase of the lower rates of duty. An addition of freigh. All these circumstances render salt a fit ob- I two cents per pound to the duty on bohea tea, may be