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Last Annual Message.
The Slave Trade.
vast cost, a contraband trade with other ports which are closed, if not by actual military operations, at least by a lawful and effective blockade.
“ For myself, I have no doubt of the power and duty of the Executive, under the laws of nations, to exclude enemies of the human race from an asylum in the United States. If Congress should think that proceedings in such cases lack the authority of law, or ought to be further regulated by it, I re. commend that provision be made for effectually preventing foreign slave-traders from acquiring domicil and facilities for their criminal occupation in our country.
“It is possible that if this were a new and open question, the maritime powers, with the light they now enjoy, would not concede the privileges of a naval belligerent to the insurgents of the United States, destitute as they are and always have been, equally of ships, and of ports and harbors.
Disloyal enemies have been neither less assiduous nor more successful during the last year than they were before that time, in their efforts, under favor of that privilege, to embroil our country in foreign wars. The desire and determination of the maritime States to defeat that design are believed to be as sincere as, and cannot be more earnest than
“Nevertheless, unforseen political difficulties have arisen, especially in Brazilian and British ports, and on the Northern boundary of the United States, which have required and are likely to continue to require the practice of constant vigilance, and a just and conciliatory spirit on the part of the United States, as well as of the nations concerned and their Governments. Commissioners have been appointed under the treaty with Great Britain, in the adjustment of the claims of the Hudson's Bay and Puget Sound Agricultural Companies in Oregon, and are now proceeding to the execution of the trust assigned to them.
“In view of the insecurity of life in the region adjacent to
Last Annual Message.
Condition of the Border.
the Canadian border by recent assaults and depredations committed by inimical and desperate persons who are barbored there, it has been thought proper to give notice that after the expiration of six months, the period conditionally stipulated in the existing arrangements with Great Britain, the United States must hold themselves at liberty to increase their naval armament upon the lakes, if they shall find that proceeding necessary.
“The condition of the Border will necessarily come into consideration in connection with the continuing or modifying the rights of transit from Canada through the United States, as well as the regulation of imposts, which were temporarily established by the Reciprocity Treaty of the 5th of June, 1964. I desire, however, to be understood while making this statement that the Colonial authorities are not deemed to be intentionally unjust or unfriendly toward the United States; but, on the contrary, there is every reason to expect that, with the approval of the Imperial Government, they will take the necessary measures to prevent new incursions across the border.
“ The act passed at the last session for the encouragement of immigration has, as far as was possible, been put into operation.
“ It seems to need an amendment which will enable the officers of the Government to prevent the practice of frauds against the immigrants while on their way and on their arrival in the ports, so as to secure them here a free choice of avocacations and place of settlement.
“A liberal disposition toward this great National policy is manifested by most of the European States, and ought to be reciprocated on our part by giving the immigrants effective National protection. I regard our immigrants as one of the principal replenishing streams which are appointed by Providence to repair the ravages of internal war, and its wastes of National strength and health.
Receipts and Disbursements.
"All that is necessary is, to secure the flow of that stream in its present fullness, and to that end, the Government must, in every way, make it manifest that it neither needs nor designs to impose involuntary military service upon those who come from other lands to cast their lot in our country.
“ The financial affairs of the Government have been successfully administered. During the last year the legislation of the last session of Congress has beneficially affected the revenue, although sufficient time has not yet elapsed to experience the full effect of several of the provisions of the act of Congress imposing increased taxation. The receipts during the year, from all sources, upon the basis of warrants signed by the Secretary of the Treasury, including loans and the balance in the Treasury on the first day of July, 1863, were $1,394,796,007 62, and the aggregate disbursements, upon the same basis, were $1,298,056,101 89, leaving a balance in the Treasury, as shown by warrants, of $96,739,905 73. Deduct from these amounts the amount of the principal of the public debt redeemed, and the amount of issues in substitution therefor, and the actual cash operations of the Treasury were : Receipts, $3,075,646 77; disbursements, $865,734, 087 76; wbich leaves a cash balance in the Treasury of $18, 842,558 71. Of the receipts, there were derived from customs, $102,316,152 99; from lands, $588,338 29 ; from direct taxes, $175,648 96; from internal revennes, $109,741,134 10; from miscellaneous sources, $47,511,448; and from loans appried to actual expenditures, including former balance, $623,443, 929 13. There were disbursed for the civil service, $27,505, 599 46; for pensions and Indians, $7.517.930 97; for the War Department, $60,791,842 97; for the Navy Department, $85,733,292 79; for interest of the public debts, $53,685,421 69; making an aggregate of $865, 234,081 86, and leaving a balance in the Treasury of $18,842,558 71, as before stated
“For the actual receipts and disbursements for the first quarter, and the estimated receipts and disbursements for the
Receipts and Disbursements.
The Public Debt.
three remaining quarters of the current fiscal year, and the general operations of the Treasury in detail, I refer you tu the report of the Secretary of the Treasury.
"I concur with him in the opinion, that the proportion of the moneys required to meet the expenses consequent upon the war derived from taxation, should be still further increased; and I earnestly invite your attention to this subject, to the end that there may be such additional legislation as shall be required to meet the just expectations of the Secretary.
“The public debt, on the first day of May last, as appears by the books of the Treasury, amounted to $1,740,690,489 49. Probably, should the war continue for another year, that amount may be increased by not far from five hundred millions. Held, as it is for the most part, by our own people, it has become a substantial branch of national, though private property.
“For obvious reasons, the more nearly this property can be distributed among all the people, the better. To forward general distribution, greater inducements to become owners, might, perhaps, with good effect and without injury, be presented to persons of limited means. With this view, I
suggest whether it might not be both expedient and competent for Congress to provide that a limited amount of some future issue of public securities might be held, by any bona fide purchaser, exempt from taxation and from seizure for debt, under such restrictions and limitations as might be necessary to guard against abuse of so important a privilege. This would enable prudent persons to set aside a small annuity against a possible day of want.
“Privileges like these would render the possession of such securities, to the amount fimited, most desirable to every person of small means who might be able to save enough for the purpose. The great advantage of citizens being creditors 4s well as debtors, is obvious. .Men readily perceive that
The Public Debt.
National Banking System.
they cannot be much oppressed by a debt which they owe to themselves.
“The public debt on the first day of July last, although somewhat exceeding the estimate of the Secretary of the Treasury made to Congress at the commencement of last session, falls short of the estimate of that office made in the succeeding December as to its probable amount at the beginning of this year, by the sum of $3,995,079 33. This fact exhibits a satisfactory condition and conduct of the operations of the Treasury.
"The National banking system is proving to be acceptable to capitalists and the people. On the 25th day of November, five hundred and eighty-four National Banks had been organized, a considerable number of which were conversions from State banks. Changes from the State system to the National system are rapidly taking place, and it is hoped that very soon there will be in the United States no banks of issue not authorized by Congress, and no bank-note circulation not secured by the government. That the government and the people will derive general benefit from this change in the banking system cf the country can hardly be questioned.
“ The National system will create a reliable and permanent influence in support of the national credit, and protect the people against losses in the use of paper money. Whether or not any further legislation is advisable for the suppression of State bank issues, it will be for Congress to determine. It seems quite clear that the Treasury cannot be satisfactorily conducted unless the government can exercise restraining power over the bank-note circulation of the country.
* The Report of the Secretary of War, and the accompany. ing documents, will detail the campaigns of the armies in the field since the date of the last annual Message, and also the operations of the several administrative bureaus of the War Department during the last year.
“It will also specify the measures deemed essential for the