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MARCH 25, 1830.]

Buffalo and New Orleans Road.

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even an indirect accommodation to the people of Ken- you please, rather as many roads all united, than as one tucky. My situation enables me to correct this misappre- road: for, whilst the various sections of it will be crowded hension. I live directly upon the track along which it is with travellers, you will rarely find one destined to pass proposed to construct this road; and I do know that many along the whole line. This view of the subject will obviKentuckians do, yearly, use this track, and that great ate, I think, many objections which are made to the bill. quantities of stock are taken along it from that State to Who would think, says the gentleman, of transporting the interior of Virginia, and sometimes to Pennsylvania. ordnance from here to Buffalo by land, when it might be My colleague [Mr. BARBOUR] asked, will this road be carried by water? Where is the grand canal of New York? of any commercial advantage? It will run, [said he] a Sir, these questions produce no difficulty. No one would great part of its way, between the waters which flow to be so foolish, I suppose, as to think of conveying ordnance the East and the waters which flow to the West, crossing by land when he could convey it by water. But, supposing some of them near their head springs, at right angles: your waters to be blockaded by your enemy, would you and almost in the same breath said, that if the road ran then deem it foolish to prefer a transportation by land to parallel with any of these navigable waters, it would be a transportation by water? I should think not. still of less commercial importance. To what does this The honorable chairman of the committee which reargument amount, except to this: that although the road ported this bill, having, in the course of the very interestis most judiciously located, in reference to the interior ing views which he presented to this committee, alluded navigation of the country, yet it is wholly useless. Who to the state of internal improvements in England and can believe this? What country was ever so situated as not France, my colleague, [Mr. P. P. BARBOUR] as if deterto feel the advantage of good roads. The gentleman here, mined to strip improvements every where of all claim to as indeed throughout, seems to have been under the influ- public favor, asked, in what countries do you find a poorer ence of feelings excited by the warmth of his opposition. and more oppressed people, than in these? Surely, the The gentleman next intimated that the estimate of ex- gentleman will not seriously contend that the internal pense in the bill was far too low; that the road would, improvements of a country are disadvantageous to it. And more probably, cost ten or twelve millions of dollars, than yet, sir, what other inference can you deduce from this two and a quarter millions. Now, in answer to this remark, question? Immediately after putting this question, in the I have only to say, that, whilst it is undeniably true that manner I have represented, the gentleman expressed his ten or twelve millions will make a better road than two willingness, nay, anxiety, that the improvement of the and a quarter millions, it is equally true that two and a country should go on. He was willing to bring roads and quarter millions will make a very good road. Again, the canals to every hamlet--to every door; but by the States expenditure of two and a quarter millions upon this road themselves, and not by this Government. Now, how does will not, as insinuated, lay Congress under any obligation this declaration comport with the question which the gento expend a further sum upon it. But if the prosperous tleman put to the committee relative to the pauperism of state of the treasury hereafter, combining with other cir- England and France? How much less, I will ask the cumstances, should make it expedient, Congress may, in gentleman, will this road, or any other piece of improveits discretion, appropriate additional funds to that object.ment, be worth, having been made by the General GovernI cannot see that Congress may not, as I cannot foresee ment, than if it had been made by the State Governments? that it will be wrong to do so, at some future time, say I never before heard it insinuated that improvements profifty years hence, if you choose, cause the whole line of this road to be Macadamized.

moted pauperism. I cannot avoid thinking that the violence of the opposition which the gentleman feels to the assertion of jurisdiction over the soil of the States, by the General Government, sharpens in a high degree the opposition which he feels to this measure, on the ground of expediency; else, why such strong efforts to undervalue, to disparage, the proposed road?


The gentleman further said, that the interest upon the sum proposed to be expended upon this road is more than the whole cost of transporting the mail throughout the whole of its distance, and then drew the conclusion, that it was inexpedient to make it for the accommodation of the mail. This argument, though the conclusion may be just, is, The gentleman has said, that, in proportion as you certainly, not quite fair. If the accommodation of the remove the expenditure of money from the influence and mail were the sole object of its construction, then the ar-control of self-interest, you increase extravagance. gument would be fair. But it should not be forgotten that this is but one of three objects to be effected by making the road. In addition to the advantages which are to be derived from the superior facilities in the transportation of the mail which this road will afford, are to be considered the advantages which it will afford to internal commerce, and the advantages it will afford, as a military road, in time of war. The aggregate of advantages, resulting from these three sources, constitutes the reason of the committee for reporting this bill. We all know of how much importance the despatch of the mail is, at any time, but particularly in time of war. The delay of a day may cost a city and many lives. The battle of the 8th of January, 1815, at New Orleans, was fought because despatches, which were on their way, had not reached their destination. The value of this road, in a military point of view, I admit to be, chiefly, contingent. It may, in this relation, be incalculably valuable, or not, according to circumstances.

subscribe most heartily to this proposition. Self-interest, when it can be brought to bear upon the subject, is the surest guaranty of economy in the expenditure of money. But how will the gentleman apply the principle, with any advantage, to the case under discussion? Can a State, any better than the United States, dispense with agents in executing its schemes of internal improvement? If it cannot, I should think the argument was without force. There are no means, in reference to this subject, it seems to me, which can be employed by a State, that cannot, with equal facility and advantage, be employed by the United States. The plan adopted in Virginia, and referred to by the gentleman, of requiring the subscription of three-fifths of the stock necessary to complete a work of this character by private individuals, as a condition upon which the State will subscribe the remaining two-fifths, is wisely accommodated to the limited means of the State. But lapprehend the adoption of a similar principle here would amount to Again: The gentleman asks, will troops ever pass from an abandonment of some of the most important objects, in the Northern frontier to the Southern, or from the South- a national point of view. I have already intimated that ern to the Northern? I answer, I have no expectation the wealth and prosperity of a nation does not always conthat they ever will. Nor have I any expectation that many sist in the amount of money which it may have in its cofpersons will, either in times of peace or war, travel through fers; and that the wealth of its citizens was the wealth the entire line of this road. But this, I conceive, is no of the nation. Every convenience, every commercial facidrawback from its value. This road is to be regarded, if lity enjoyed by the citizen, adds to the general stock of

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Buffalo and New Orleans Road.

[MARCH 25, 1830. national wealth. Why, then, I would ask, should conve- There is, I confess, a good deal of ludicrousness in the niences, commercial or personal, be withheld, when they idea of Congress roaming over the country in search of can be so easily supplied by the Government? The gen-objects of this kind; but that they should be brought to tleman himself admitted, if I rightly understood him, that its view by applicants or petitioners, is a mode of proceed the money of the treasury was collected imperceptibly ing quite too common to excite risibility. from the people: if so, the complaint upon this score is The gentleman thinks that, upon a fair division of ten rather imaginary than real. I will venture to affirm that millions of dollars among the States, the share of Virginia the advantages of this road, should it be constructed, will would be one million; yet, he says some portion of its inbe something more than a phantom of the imagination. habitants (the people of Norfolk) felt great joy when the Besides this view of the subject, I repeat, that funds far United States subscribed one hundred and fifty thousand more than necessary for the ordinary purposes of the Go-dollars to the Dismal Swamp canal stock, as if they had, vernment will flow in upon us, and that we must make through the mere bounty of Congress, got something that some disposition of them. did not belong to them.

The gentleman again said, that this system of distribut- Now, upon looking over the ideas here conveyed by my ing the public money was unequal in its operation, and colleague, the inference is to be drawn, that, instead of therefore unjust. Now, it would appear to me that if this ob- one hundred and fifty thousand dollars, one million ought jection be sound, a system of internal improvements could to have gone to Virginia. The idea seems not to have not be sustained, either by the State, this, or any other Go-been present in his mind when this train of reflection envernment, for the objection certainly lies as strongly against tered, that from ten to twelve millions, and upwards, have it in one place as another. Sir, all civilized nations admit been annually consumed by the national debt. He seems the importance of internal improvements. All have prac- to have proceeded upon the idea that there had been an tised, to some extent, under the principle of their import-annual fund of ten millions to be distributed among the ance; and shall we now be told, that, because in construct-people. If this had been the case, the people of Norfolk ing them we cannot distribute the money employed upon would have been miserable dupes indeed, to have exulted them with perfect equality among the people, we must because their State had got one hundred and fifty thouabandon them altogether? sand dollars, when it was in fact entitled to one million.

Sound policy requires that the most important improve- Such, however, was not the fact. The people got a hunments should be selected, with due regard to national ad-dred and fifty thousand dollars through the favor of Convantage, including equality of distribution of money, so gress, rather than because, at that time, Virginia had any far as practicable, as well as every other fair consideration, particular claim to a dividend from the treasury. and nothing more.

Perfect equality in the distribution of the public money is not expected--is not possible.

I do not feel the force of this remark of my colleague, that exactions and contributions should be equal.

My honorable colleague was pleased, in the course of, his eloquent speech, amongst other things, to direct our attention to old Rome, once the proudest city of the world. He asked, where is Rome, with all its splendid aqueducts, towers, and temples--Rome, that once urged its conquests How equal? Literally and arithmetically? If he mean almost to the Ganges? Aye, and where are the Romans that they shall be literally and arithmetically equal, then I themselves, who built these splendid works? They, too, take issue with him, and without an argument will submit are gone. They were the workmanship of the Deity, yet the question to the decision of this House. If he mean, they have perished. Could mortality impart immortality? as I presume he does, that the constitution requires only No. Athens, Rome, and Carthage once were, but now practicable equality in public exactions and contributions, they are not. The reflection is melancholy, but it is irrethen I will contend that in the construction of no work sistible. The time will come when our beloved republic which can be selected, would a more equal distribution of will live only in history. It is the common fate of all things the people's money be made among them, than in the con- beneath the sun. But I do trust, that, under the blessings struction of the proposed road. Exaction-as that is a of a kind Providence, ages upon ages will run their ample term which belongs to the tariff, a matter which the gen-round ere it will be asked, where, now, is the once splentleman declined to discuss--I shall permit it to sleep un-did republic of North America?


As the downfall of no Government, heretofore, is to be

The gentleman said it would be unjust, after he and an- ascribed to its improvements, there can be no just cause other had, with great nicety, weighed out each one hun- to apprehend such a consequence from such a cause in fudred pounds, in gold scales, as contributions to the Go-ture. Sir, let gentlemen say what they may, it will, neververnment, that that other person should take the whole theless, remain an unshaken truth, that internal improvesum, and appropriate it to his exclusive use. ments are a source of wealth and prosperity to a nation.

I should certainly not differ with my colleague in opi- A well regulated system of internal improvements will, nion here. I will, however, ask the gentleman how he ap-I doubt not, be found to be one of the most efficient ligaplies the remark to this bill? It may mean something, if ments of our Union, whilst it will give no just ground for it be taken as referring to the tariff; but I do not under- the apprehension of consolidation, and a destruction of the stand it in its bearing upon the proposed road. The two State sovereignties. or three millions which will be expended upon this road, should it be made, will, instead of going into the hands of one or a few, be scattered amongst thousands.

If destruction shall come upon our Union, (which God forbid!) it will be alike to me whether the fault shall have been with the Federal Government, or the State GovernThe gentleman, as if willing to defeat this bill by any ments. Disunion is the dreaded result. It may as readihonorable means, here ridiculed the idea of applicants ly happen from the ill-devised measures and ill-timed oppocoming before Congress from all quarters of the Union, sition of the State Governments, as from similar causes for internal improvements--some with propositions for na- springing out of the action of the General Government. tional improvements--some with propositions for more Both sides should be alike careful to avoid this result— national improvements, and--some with propositions for both animated with a spirit of conciliation and forbearance. most national improvements. Sir, there is nothing in Mr. RAMSEY said, he did not mean to detain the comthis conceit at all Tudicrous or ridiculous in my mind. Im-mittee long, nor did he intend to enter upon the constituprovements of all these several degrees of nationality be- tionality of the power of Congress to make the road coning submitted to Congress, from which to make selections, templated by the bill. I [said Mr. R.] consider that quesit is to be inferred that the selections will be made from tion settled long since. I go upon the expediency of the that class denominated most national. measure. The road proposed by the bill runs about mid

MARCH 25, 1830.]

Buffalo and New Orleans Road.

[H. of R.

way between the North and Western frontier and the sea- I ask, where is the difference between granting a sum of board. It is a road that will be of immense importance money to be expended under the direction of this Governto this place and to the Government. It will be a welding ment to clear out the mouth of a river or creek, or the link to solder together this Union. There is not a mem-granting a sum of money to make a road? The one is to ber in my hearing, that does not know that each State in let the boat pass, and the other to let the wagon pass. the Union has a seat of Government within the central And, further, where the difference between the United limits of the State, and has erected public buildings for States making a steamboat channel to carry the United the convenience of the legislative bodies and public offi- States' mail through, or the United States making a road cers. I take it for granted that other States have done as to carry the mail over? I, for the soul of me, can see none. Pennsylvania has. Harrisburg is the capital, or seat of Go- It is four hundred miles from this to Albany; we are as vernment, and that State has, out of the State funds, ex-near Buffalo at this place, (Washington city,) as when we pended very large sums to make roads and avenues to and arrive at Albany. Now, will any gentleman tell me that from that place--a turnpike road by the southern route; it is of no importance to save four hundred miles in the as it is called, to Pittsburg; one by the north route to the transportation of the mail from this place to Buffalo? same place; one to Lancaster, one to Reading, a bridge at My people want this road; they want to come here with Harrisburg, and one at Clark's ferry. Not less than five their produce; there is no direct road to this place in a hundred thousand dollars of money has been expended northern direction; all the roads in my State lead to the to make roads, bridges, &c. to lead to and from the seat seaboard. The influence of Philadelphia has caused all of Government of my State, so that every individual who our public roads to point that way. Last year the Legishad business to transact at the seat of Government might lature of Pennsylvania nearly unanimously refused to perhave a good, safe, and convenient way to travel over. mit the patriotic Baltimoreans to make a railroad up into Now, are we not sent here to legislate for the whole com- that State. It is said this is to be a direct road. I can tell the munity, and particularly for this ten miles square, the Dis-gentlemen from Virginia and North Carolina, that if the trict? Will this great, growing, and prosperous Union be Government will give me the one thousand five hundred behind the States? This Government, with a treasury dollars per mile that this bill proposes, I will make a road overflowing, will it refuse to make roads and avenues to for two hundred miles from this place towards Buffalo for lead to and from this capital? I hope not. I do not know, that sum, which they would travel forty miles out of their nor do I believe there has been one dollar expended by way, were they going in that direction, to get upon, if they this Government, to make a road from the interior to did not think their consciences were to be effected by reach this place, the capital of this Union. Then, if the travelling on an unconstitutional road. My constituents different States make good roads and avenues to lead from want this road. They say they have a right to ask for it. different parts of the State to the capital, on the same There is money enough to make it. The people along principle I contend that we are called on to aid in making this road have paid more money long since into the treasimilar provision to reach this capital, from the interior of sury than would make it. They have sent me here to speak this great and very rapidly growing nation. I hold it as for them, and express their wishes and desires; I do it an imperative duty for us to do so. Make the road from most willingly, and honestly believing I ask nothing but this to Buffalo, (that is, the part I will speak of,) it will what is just and right. run through some of the most rich and fertile valleys in I expect a disinterested magnanimity from many of the the United States. You will see, in ten years or less from members from New York. It is truc this road will run this time, from fifty to a hundred wagons a day, in the through but a corner of that State: it does not lead down months of November, December, and January, in the the canal to the city of New York; yet I hope to hear the streets of this city, loaded with iron, flour, beef, pork, members from that State say, much has been done for the whiskey, and a great variety of other articles. Would eastern end of the State, we will not now withhold from that be of no advantage to this place? Have we not our the western end this small pittance they ask. I hope none navy yard here, our marine barracks, with a great variety of my colleagues will be found voting against this bill; of other public works? And no doubt more will be built. the western part cannot, with any propriety, in my opiWould it not be of vast importance that every thing from nion, vote against it; they have had many favors extended the interior should be got upon the best terms to supply to them out of the public treasury, and they expect many those public works? And where will you get such sup-more. The eastern part I know will not, from the examplies but from the interior? Yes, make this road as con-ple set by the chairman of the Committee on Internal Imtemplated by the bill, and you will see wagons and teams provements, who reported this bill. He has acted a highly from the district I have the honor in part to represent, in honorable part in this project, and he merits the applause the streets of this city, one of which would load up and of the American nation. haul off ten of your wagons, horses, and loads, that we I now appeal to another class of men, and I hope to see now see in the streets, at one load. It is said we have no them act the part of honorable, liberal men--I mean the right to legislate beyond this District on the subject of commercial part; they have had upwards of thirty millions roads. Now, suppose Maryland and Virginia were each of dollars given for light-houses, sea-walls, harbors, piers, to pass a law to make a wall around the District, (as it is wharves, fortifications, &c. to protect commerce. contended we cannot go beyond it,) what would we then State of North Carolina alone has got upwards of two hundo? Would the fine spun arguments of the gentlemen dred and eighty thousand dollars for light-houses, and I befrom North Carolina and Virginia keep us here, or not let lieve one hundred and fifty thousand dollars to the Dismal us come to this capital to legislate for the whole United Swamp canal; yet gentlemen say she has got nothing. Now, States? Of what use would this House, and all the public can gentlemen ask me, or any other member residing off the works erected here, be to the United States, if we could not seaboard, to vote away millions annually for the breakget to them? What would be said of Congress, after spend-water, light-houses, &c. for their direct and consequential ing from six to ten millions at this place in erecting public advantage, and not give to the people in the interior what works, if we could not get to them for want of a road. they have a right so justly to ask for, that they may have We have been doing indirectly that which it is con- some of the direct and consequential advantages from an tended we cannot do directly. Congress has appropriated expenditure of a part of the public money amongst them? near four millions of dollars to internal improvements, If the deepening of channels, opening the mouths of creeks, such as canals, roads, &c., and as much of the public lands rivers, harbors, and inlets, and the erection of light-houses as would make four millions of dollars more for roads and and fortifications, &c. is necessary to the convenience and canals. interest of commerce on the seaboard, and a direct advan


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Buffalo and New Orleans Road.

[MARCH 25, 1830.

foreign commerce? If not, how can he contend that to make a road is to regulate commerce among the States? Sir, when it shall be proved that canoes, ships, and roads are commercial regulations, otherwise commercial laws, then I will give up this point.

tage to the neighborhood where the money is expended, tribes? Will he contend that to build a ship is to regulate let me ask those seaboard gentlemen, if we, who reside in the interior, have not a right to ask their aid in the passage of this bill? I think none will deny that we have that. Methinks I hear every gentleman recording his vote in favor of it. If they do not, they say to us, you may get to the seat of Government by some of the old Indian paths, or down some stream in a canal, or on the back of a packhorse or mule. No, no, I cannot for one moment harbor such an opinion; but, as high-minded, honorable men, to whom the interior has always granted every thing they have asked for, I hope to see one and all of you come out manfully and vote for the bill, and not shelter yourselves behind the constitution; for there is no other excuse left for you, in my opinion.

I am too feeble to say more; I hope some gentleman more capable than I am will do justice to this subject.


Sir, if there is any question respecting the power of Congress, that has been decided against the claim of pow er, in a way that ought to be satisfactory, final, and conclusive, it is this. We have the authority of Jefferson, Madison, and Monroe, that Congress do not possess jurisdiction to make roads. Mr. Madison and Mr. Monroe expressed their opinions in the most solemn manner, when rejecting bills passed by both Houses of Congress, assuming this power. The last act of Mr. Madison's administration was to return, rejected, a bill assuming this power. But we have not only the authority of these great Mr. SMYTH said, I have had no concern whatever in names. This House has repeatedly, on great debate, deforming the bill now before the committee. I am to vote cided that Congress have not the power; and there is not upon it; and I will do my duty to my constituents, the an act in the whole statute book that assumes it. In commonwealth, and the constitution. I will very briefly March, 1818, after a protracted discussion, this House dediscuss, first, the power claimed by this Government to cided that Congress had not power to construct post make roads, and assume jurisdiction over them; second, roads and military roads, by eighty-four votes against the power to appropriate money for the purpose of mak- eighty-two; and that Congress had not power to construct ing roads, without assuming jurisdiction over them; third, roads between the States, by ninety-five votes against sethe power to aid internal improvements, by subscribing for venty-one. And when Mr. Monroe had negatived the bill the stock of companies incorporated to make them; fourth, establishing toll gates on the Cumberland road, and rethe power to appropriate money in fulfilment of a com- turned it with his objections, on reconsideration, a majori pact; fifth, the power conferred on the President by the ty of the House voted against it; a satisfactory proof that bill; sixth, the general expediency of this appropriation; it had been passed without due consideration. seventh, the particular utility of the road proposed to be Sir, as this power is claimed by implication, and as in forty years not one act has been passed that asserts it, this The gentleman from Tennessee [Mr. ISACKS] contends long nonuser should be taken as evidence that it is not conthat the power to establish post roads, conferred on Con-tained in the grant; and we should now consider it as setgress by the constitution, is a power to make them. Itled, that Congress have not power to enter into a State, contend that "establish," wherever used in the consti- assume jurisdiction, and construct roads. tution, signifies, to give legal existence, or legal effect. I will now consider the claim of power to appropriate The people "ordain and establish the constitution;" one money to the making of roads, without assuming jurisdicof their objects is declared to be "to establish justice;" tion. I have not found it in the constitution. But more Congress shall have power to establish a uniform rule than fifty acts of Congress, passed during the last twentyof naturalization;" "the ratification of the convention of eight years, make such appropriations. The ground on nine States shall be sufficient for the establishment of this which we, who opposed the construction which authorizes constitution." "Congress shall make no law respecting such appropriations, stood, is nearly beaten from under us. an establishment of religion." In all these cases, it is ob- The States and the people may construe their constituvious that to establish means to give legal effect, to give tion; and the construction thereof, by them, must be conlegal existence, to set up by law. Congress have power clusive. The long use of a power by Congress, by the ap"to establish post offices and pest roads." Whatever probation of the State Legislatures and the people, may sancbe the meaning of establish, as it relates to post offices, tion the construction of the constitution by which it is assummust be its meaning as relates to post roads. The same ed. I would like to see the opinion of the State Legisla word, used in different sentences, may have different mean-tures taken, to ascertain if threefourths of them admit that ings; but the same word, only once used in the same this power is in Congress. The people, by re-electing those sentence, cannot have different meanings. Does power who have assumed it, seem to have given it their sanction. to establish post offices signify power to build, to put up I will next consider the power of Congress to aid brick and mortar? No, it signifies power to give legal internal improvements, by subscribing for the stock of existence to offices. So, power to establish post roads, companies incorporated to make them. I have always is power to designate, by law, the roads on which the mail been of opinion since I had a seat here, that Congress shall be carried; and this construction has been acted on possessed this power as a fiscal operation, which might by Congress during forty years. be necessary if the treasury was full. It is well known

The gentleman from Tennessee [Mr. ISACKS] contends to my colleague, the late chairman of the Committee that Congress have power to regulate commerce "among on Internal Improvements, [Mr. MERCER] that such has the several States;" and, therefore, may make roads for been my opinion. If we have a surplus revenue, it carrying on that commerce. would be inexpedient to have it lying in the treasury, or

Sir, the power to regulate commerce, signifies power in bonds, unproductive. It must be a question of expeto pass laws controlling commerce. Laws are regulations. diency, whether money should be thus invested; and I Regulations are laws. "No preference shall be given by hold that it will be always inexpedient, when we have a any regulation of commerce, or revenue, to the ports of debt to pay, and that debt is payable. The object of such one State over those of another." The power given to an operation should be a profitable investment of our Congress to regulate commerce among the States, is a money. The promotion of internal improvements would power to control it, and to prevent the State Legislatures be an incident. This power, duly exercised, would give from burdening it by duties, taxes, or licenses, and so on; to the Government command of the accumulated surplus by which one State might oppress the inhabitants of an- of its revenue, on any emergency; and it would be very other. Will the gentleman from Tennessee contend that convenient to have fifty millions of productive stock to disto make a canoe is to regulate commerce with the Indian pose of at the commencement of a war. This power

MARCH 25, 1830.]

Buffalo and New Orleans Road.

[H. of R.

has been exercised, and we do possess stock to a considera- they are the only duties which are not imposed for their ble amount. benefit. Repeal those duties, and you exempt the manu

I am next to consider the power of Congress to appro-facturers from all burdens. Let me caution Southern priate money in fulfilment of a compact. In 1802, the gentlemen against repealing these seven and a half millions United States entered into a compact with the State of of duties. Such a measure would render the reduction of Ohio, on admitting that State into the Union, that five per the imposts which oppress their people hopeless. Let the cent. of the nett proceeds of land in that State, sold by whole of the imposts be gradually reduced, so as not sudCongress, should be applied to the making of roads from denly to affect any interest. The manufactories being the navigable waters of the Atlantic to and through the brought into existence by protection, it ought not to be said State, under the authority of Congress, with the con- suddenly withdrawn. sent of the States through which the road should pass; My colleague would not follow the example of France and, in consideration thereof, the State engaged to exempt and England, in making internal improvements. The from taxes, for the term of five years from the sale there- people of those countries are depressed, and many of them of, the land to be sold by Congress. In pursuance of this paupers. Sir, it was not the canal of Languedoc that decompact, the Cumberland road was made. And here again pressed the people of France in the reign of Louis XIV. we have the authority of Mr. Jefferson, Mr. Madison, and That great work cost five hundred and forty thousand Mr. Monroe, who severally approved the appropriations pounds, and was finished in fifteen years. It was the perfor this purpose. petual wars of Louis XIV, which, in his latter days, were Now, sir, you have the like compact with the States of disastrous. It was that despicable bigotry which drove Alabama and Mississippi. That with the State of Alaba-five hundred thousand protestants from their country, and ma provides that five per cent. of the nett proceeds of scattered their wealth and arts over all christendom. lands within the territory, "shall be reserved for making was not the expense of making canals and roads that depublic roads, canals, and improving the navigation of pressed the people of England. Canals in England are rivers, of which three-fifths shall be applied to those ob- but of recent date; they are made by companies; occasionjects, within the said State, under the direction of the le-ally the Government gives a small grant. It is the public gislature thereof; and two-fifths to the making of a road debt of England that depresses the people. At the end of or roads leading to the said State, under the direction of the year 1701 it was six millions; in 1714 it was fifty Congress." And, in consideration thereof, the State of millions; in 1775 it was one hundred and thirty-five milAlabama has engaged not to tax the lands sold by Congress lions; in 1784 it was two hundred and sixty-six millions; it for five years; that the lands of non-residents shall be tax- is now perhaps a thousand millions. Thus, we see that it ed no higher than that of residents; and that no tax shall was the wars of the American and French revolutions that be imposed on the lands of the United States. Here, then, have involved England in a debt which can never be paid; we have a valuable consideration for the money which we and this depresses her people. Her hierarchy adds grievshall appropriate to make this road, leading to Alabama ously to the burden. The revenues of the Episcopal and Mississippi. We owe a debt; we have an unquestiona- Church in England amount to about forty millions of dolble right to appropriate money to pay it. This appropria- lars, paid to eighteen thousand priests; while eight thoution, in pursuance of our compact, is as fully authorized sand other priests receive about two million two hundred as the appropriation of fifteen millions for the purchase of and twenty thousand dollars. It is not the expense of inLouisiana, made in fulfilment of a treaty.* ternal improvement that has reduced seven thousand of


I will next consider the powers granted to the President the people of Dublin to live on three half-pence each day. by the bill. He is authorized to appoint commissioners, In Ireland, seventeen hundred episcopal priests receive who are to lay out the road; he is then to take the necessa- five million seven hundred and seventy-two thousand dolry measures for the construction of the road; contracts are lars, extorted from agriculture, while two thousand seven to be entered into, and releases obtained from the proprie- hundred and thirty-eight other priests receive one million tors of lands. No jurisdiction is assumed; no power is and sixty-one thousand dollars. There is no danger that given to take and condemn the lands. In adopting mea- internal improvements will depress the people. sures for the construction of this road, the President must pursue the authority given by this bill, or have recourse to the existing laws.

I will say something of the general expediency of this appropriation. If there is a surplus of revenue to expend in a beneficent way, it should be distributed as generally I will now notice some of the objections made by my and as equally as circumstances will admit. This approeloquent colleague, [Mr. P. P. BARBOUR] who opposed priation will be extensively beneficial; seven great States the bill. He would dissuade Congress from making this will share in its benefits. This road will extend through appropriation, because there are seven and a half millions the interior of the country, where nothing has been disof imposts which might be repealed without touching the pensed for internal improvements, and little for any other of duties which protect domestic manufactures. Sir, many the expenses of the Government. Set one point of a pair of of those duties which he would thus repeal, protect agri-compasses at my residence, describe a circle of the diameculture; many of them are paid by manufacturers, and ter of five hundred miles, within that extent, not a cent has been disbursed by this Government for any work or • Extract from a speech delivered by Mr. Smyth in the House of improvement; not a salary is paid within my knowledge, Representatives, in February, 1823.

would not vest in the State the domain?

and no compensation, except to members of Congress,. "I will justify the appropriation made for the construction of the mail contractors, postmasters, jurors, and for taking the Cumberland road. Congress are authorized to dispose of, and make all needful regulations respecting the teritory and other property becensus. Your expenditures for the army, navy, fortificalonging to the United States. Now I apprehend no regulation can be tions, and collection of revenue, are on the seaboard, in more needful' than one which preserves to the United States a title the cities, or on the frontier. The interior suffers by a to their property. Is it certain that, admitting a new State into the Union on an equal footing, in all respects, with the original States, perpetual drain of its money, none of which is restored by acknowledgment of the independence of a colony? Be that as it may, venue above the amount of the necessary expenses of the Would it not operate like an the Government. The prevailing policy is to have a reOhio, by this compact, surrendered her right to tax, during five years, the land which the United States might sell, and thus gave an equiva. Government. I did not sanction this policy; but, as it is adopt. lent for the two per cent. which the United States engaged to disburse ed, as the system is fixed upon us, let a small part of the surin making roads leading to that State. To make needful regulations rspecting the public lands, is a granted power. Congress may pass plus be expended, according to our compact with the Souththe necessary laws to execute that power, and consequently may pass western States, in the district of my colleague, and of mine. appropriation laws for executing this needful regulation,' this compict with Ohio. Thus the appropriations for making the Cumberland I am to say something of the particular utility of the road road appear to have been constitutional," proposed to be made. My colleague [Mr. BARBOUR] Sup

VOL. VI.-86


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