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exultation and in cheering hope. From the experience of the past, we derive instructive lessons for the future. Of the two great political parties which have divided the opinions and feelings of our country, the candid and the just will now admit that both have contributed splendid talents, spotless integrity, ardent patriotism, and disinterested sacrifices, to the formation and administration of this government; and that both have required a liberal indulgence for a portion of human infirmity and error. The revolutionary wars of Europe, commencing precisely at the moment when the government of the United States first went into operation under this constitution, excited a collision of sentiments and of sympathies, which kindled all the passions, and imbittered the conflict of parties, till the nation was involved in war, and the Union was shaken to its centre. This time of trial embraced a period of five-and-twenty years, during which the policy of the Union, in its relations with Europe, constituted the principal basis of our political divisions, and the most arduous part of the action of our federal government. With the catastrophe in which the wars of the French revolution terminated, and our own subsequent peace with Great Britain, this baneful weed of party strife was uprooted. From that time, 'no difference of principle, connected either with the theory of government, or with our intercourse with foreign nations, has existed, or been called forth in force sufficient to sustain a continued combination of parties, or give more than wholesome animation to public sentiment or legislative debate. Our political creed is, without a dissenting voice that can be heard, that the will of the people is the source, and the happiness of the people the end, of all legitimate government upon earth. That the best security for the beneficence, and the best guaranty against the abuse of power, consists in the freedom, the purity, and the frequency of popular elections; that the general government of the Union, and the separate governments of the states, are all sovereignties of legitimated powers -- fellow-servants of the same masters, uncontrolled within their respective spheres, uncontrollable by encroachments upon each other ; that the firmest security of peace is the preparation during peace of the defences of war ; that a rigorous economy, and accountability of public expenditures, should guard against the aggravation, and alleviate, when possible, the burden of taxation; that the military should be kept in strict subordination to the civil power ; that the freedom of the press and of religious opinion should be inviolate ; that the policy of our country is peace, and the ark of our salvation union, are articles of faith upon which we are all agreed. If there have been those who doubted whether a confederated representative democracy were a government competent to the wise and orderly management of the common concerns of a mighty nation, those doubts have been dispelled. If there have been projects of partial confederacies to be erected upon the ruins of the Union, they have been scattered to the winds. If there have been dangerous attachments to one foreign nation, and antipathies against another, they have been extinguished. Ten years of peace, at home and abroad, have assuaged the animosities of political contention, and blended into harmony the most discordant elements of public opinion. There still remains one effort of magnanimity, one sacrifice of prejudice and passion, to be made by the individuals throughout the nation, who have heretofore followed the standard of political party. It is that of discarding every remnant of rancor against each other ; of embracing as countrymen and friends; and of yielding to talents and virtue alone that confidence which, in times of contention for principle, was bestowed only upon those who bore the badge of party communion.

The collisions of party spirit, which originated in speculative opinions, or in different views of administrative policy, are in their nature transitory. Those which are founded on geographical divisions, adverse interests of soil, climate, and modes of domestic life, are more permanent, and therefore, perhaps, more dangerous. It is this which gives inestimable value to the character of our government, at once federal and national. It holds out to us a perpetual admonition to preserve alike, and with equal anxiety, the rights of each individual state in its own government, and the rights of the whole nation in that of the Union. Whatever is of domestic concernment, unconnected with the other members of the Union, or with foreign lands, belongs exclusively to the administration of the state governments. Whatsoever directly involves the rights and interests of the federative fraternity, or of foreign powers, is of the resort of this general government. The duties of both are obvious in the general principle, though sometimes perplexed with difficulties in the detail. To respect the rights of the state governments is the inviolable duty of that of the Union; the government of every state will feel its own obligation to respect and - preserve the rights of the whole. The prejudices every where too commonly entertained against distant strangers are worn away, and the jealousies of jarring interests are allayed by the composition and functions of the great national councils annually assembled from all quarters of the Union at this place. Here the distinguished men from every section of our country, while meeting to deliberate upon the great interests of those by whom they are deputed, learn to estimate the talents, and do justice to the virtues, of each other. The harmony of the nation is promoted, and the whole Union is knit together by the sentiments of mutual respect, the habits of social intercourse, and the ties of personal friendship, formed between the representatives of its several parts, in the performance of their service at this metropolis.

Passing from this general review of the purposes and injunctions of the federal constitution and their results, as indicating the first traces of the path of duty in the discharge of my public trust, I turn to the administration of my immediate predecessor, as the second.

It has passed away in a period of profound peace; how much to the satisfaction of our country, and to the honor of our country's name, is known to you all. The great features of its policy, in general concurrence with the will of the legislature, have been - to cherish peace while preparing for defensive war; to yield exact justice to other nations, and maintain the rights of our own; to cherish the principles of freedom and of equal rights, wherever they were proclaimed; to discharge with all possible promptitude the national debt; to reduce within the narrowest limits

of efficiency the military force; to improve the organization and discipline of the army; to provide and sustain a school of military science; to extend equal protection to all the great interests of the nation; to promote the civilization of the Indian tribes; and to proceed in the great system of internal improvements within the limits of the constitutional power of the Union. Under the pledge of these promises, made by that erninent citizen, at the time of his first induction to this office, in his career of eight years, the internal taxes have been repealed ; sixty millions of the public debt have been discharged; provision has been made for the comfort and relief of the aged and indigent among the surviving warriors of the revolution; the regular armed force has been reduced, and its constitution revised and perfected; the accountability for the expenditures of public moneys has been made more effective ; the Floridas have been peaceably acquired, and our boundary has been extended to the Pacific Ocean; the independence of the southern nations of this hemisphere has been recognized, and recommended by example and by counsel to the potentates of Europe; progress has been made in the defence of the country by fortifications, and the increase

- towards the effectual suppression of the African traffic in slaves - in alluring the aboriginal hunters of our land to the cultivation of the soil and of the mind — in exploring the interior regions of the Union, and in preparing, by scientific researches and surveys, for the further application of our national resources to the internal improvement of our country.

In this brief outline of the promise and performance of my immediate predecessor, the line of duty for his successor is clearly delineated. To pursue to their consummation those purposes of improvement in our common condition, instituted or recommended by him, will embrace the whole sphere of my obligations. To the topic of internal improvement, emphatically urged by him at his inauguration, I recur with peculiar satisfaction. It is that from which I am convinced that the unborn millions of our posterity, who are in future ages to people this continent, will derive their most fervent gratitude to the founders of the Union; that in which the beneficent action

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of its government will be most deeply felt and acknowledged. The magnificence and splendor of their public works are among the imperishable glories of the ancient republics. The roads and aqueducts of Rome have been the admiration of all after-ages, and have survived thousands of years, after all her conquests have been swallowed up in despotism, or become the spoil of barbarians. Some diversity of opinion has prevailed with regard to the powers of Congress for legislation upon objects of this nature. The most respectful deference is due to doubts, originating in pure patriotism, and sustained by venerated authority. But nearly twenty years have passed since the construction of the first national road was commenced. The authority for its construction was then unquestioned. To how many thousands of our countrymen has it proved a benefit! To what single individual has it ever proved an injury? Repeated, liberal, and candid discussions in the legislature have conciliated the s timents, and approximated the opinions of enlightened minds, upon the question of constitutional power.

I cannot but hope that, by the same process of friendly, patient, and persevering deliberation, all constitutional objections will ultimately be removed. The extent and limitation of the

powers of the general government, in relation to this transcendently important interest, will be settled and acknowledged to the common satisfaction of all; and every speculative scruple will be solved by a practical public blessing.

Fellow-citizens, you are acquainted with the peculiar circumstances of the recent elections, which have resulted in affording me the opportunity of addressing you at this time. You have heard the exposition of the principles which will direct me in the fulfilment of the high and solemn trust imposed upon me in this station. Less possessed of your confidence in advance than any of my predecessors, I am deeply conscious of the prospect that I shall stand, more and oftener, in need of your indulgence. Intentions, upright and pure; a heart devoted to the welfare of our country, and the unceasing application of the faculties allotted to me to her service, are all the pledges that I can give to the faithful performance of the arduous

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