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portion of public monies, for the support of measures which have for their objects the security of our excellent governments, the preservation of our property, of our civil and religious rights, and the protection of our commerce, upon which (I cannot too often repeat) the success of our agriculture ultimately depends, what good citizen is there among us that would not yield a ready compliance?
An unfortunate event, which took place near the north line of this state, within the province of Canada, in February last, and which, in its consequences, might have interrupted that good neighborhood, which it is the mutual interest of people inhabiting adjacent territories to preserve, has led to a correspondence between the Executive of his Britannic Majesty's province of Lower Canada and myself. I shall now only add, that we are indebted to the liberality and justice, which has distinguished the conduct of his Excellency the late Governor Prescott, and the coincidence of the present commander in chief, Governor Milnes, for a happy and amicable adjustment of this disagreeable business. As this correspondence particularly appertains to the executive branch of our Government, I shall lay it before the Council, whose wisdom will direct such further communication as they may think proper.
I shall communicate to you certain Resolutions from the states of Virginia and Kentucky. These resolutions, in some of our sister states, whose opinions we respect, have met with severe comment; in others, with marked contempt: it remains for you to reply to them in the manner you shall judge they merit. For my own part, I have not the smallest hesitation in predicting that they will meet your decided disapprobation: because they contain principles hostile to your best interests, and because I know you love your country, and are rationally attached to the principles of our excellent Federal Constitution.2
I wish you an agreeable session, and ardently pray the Governor of the Universe, to direct all your deliberations for the best good of your constituents, and welfare of your Country. ISAAC TICHENOR.
ANSWER OF THE ASSEMBLY.
His Excellency the Governor and Council having withdrawn, Ordered, That a committee be appointed to prepare and report an answer to the speech of his Excellency the Governor to both branches of the Legislature and a committee was appointed of Mr. [Daniel] Chipman, Mr. [Udney] Hay, and Mr. [Rev. Asa] Lyon.
Oct. 21 1799. Mr. [Daniel] Chipman, from the committee appointed to prepare and report an answer to the speech of his Excellency the Governor delivered before both branches of [the] Legislature on the twelfth instant, reported an Answer, which was read in the words following, to wit.
"To His Excellency Isaac Tichenor, Esquire, Governor of the
State of Vermont.
"Sir, The confidence of your constituents expressed by a decided majority of their annual suffrages, affords the highest satisfaction to the General Assembly. While the people are the source of power and honor, their grateful approbation must be the best reward the Chief Magistrate can receive for his continued service. With you, sir, we sincerely rejoice that, under your administration, the state is in a high degree prosperous and happy; that the bounties of providence have been so lib
See special message on this subject, post p. 514.
erally bestowed, the blessings of health and peace so generally enjoyed ; and the honor and felicity of the nation so extensively encreased. Το behold our citizens rapidly advancing in habits of industry and economy, the science of government generally understood among the people, and a high veneration for religion, morality and the laws, gives us the fullest assurance that ill founded jealousy of our rulers cannot exist, nor the ambitious and designing find means to discourage the upright Magistrate. We predict, with pleasure, the encrease of well founded confidence in the state and general governments, built upon the firm basis of our happy constitution.
"The discharging of past debts and the present state of the treasury, are a noble evidence of the wisdom and prudence of our former Legislatures. Our present resources, managed with a wise frugality, which this Legislature will not fail to enforce by example, will enable us to meet with promptitude any expense which this, or the general government may require.
The wisdom and firmness of the Chief Magistrate of the Union, supported by the patriotic energy of the national Legislature, have been crowned with success, beyond the most sanguine expectations of our citizens. With pleasure we behold the late gloom dispelling, and a prospect opening, which nothing but a full reliance, under Heaven, in the justice of our cause, and a firm confidence in the wisdom of our national administration, could have led us to expect. Our commerce is protected, our rights are defended against lawless invaders, and we hope soon by our energetic measures, to obtain that justice, which our messengers of peace have hitherto sought in vain. Agriculture, so nearly connected with commerce, already smiles, it gladdens the countenance of the husbandman, and fills the heart of every patriot with joy. Feeling our interest in the result of these decided measures, rejoicing in the security of our dearest rights, we wish success to every laudable enterprize, and will be ready to afford the most prompt and ample aid in our power.
"With satisfaction we received information, from your Excellency, of the accommodation of an unhappy affair, which had given serious alarm to many of our citizens your seasonable interference, and the happy result of your correspondence, we consider is of the highest importance, and trust we shall never forget the liberality and justice of his Excellency, the late Governor, and his Honor the present Commander in Chief of his Britannic Majesty's province of Lower Canada, which in so great a degree have contributed to this event.
“Be assured, sir, that we shall duly consider the resolutions from Virginia and Kentucky, and give them that treatment which, after mature deliberation, we shall judge they merit. Our attachment to the principles of our excellent Federal Constitution is such that any sentiment or measure tending to its subversion, will be considered hostile to our best interest, and ever meet our decided disapprobation. Let constitutional rights be forever sacred, and disorganizing principles eternally detested!
From these sentiments we shall ever act, and relying that your excellency will fully coincide in the same principles, we wish you all prosperity, and pray for the welfare of the nation."
On motion, Resolved, That the foregoing Answer to the Speech of his Excellency the Governor, delivered on the 12th instant, before both branches of the Legislature, be accepted; and that it be signed by the Speaker in behalf of the House; and that a committee consisting of
three members be appointed to deliver the same to his Excellency. And a committee was appointed of Mr. Speaker [Amos Marsh,] Mr. Ephraim Wheelock, and Mr. [Udney] Hay.'
The Jeffersonian republicans in this legislature numbered fifty-two, but they refrained from making any issue with the Governor, reserving themselves for a protest on the answer of the Legislature to the Virginia and Kentucky resolutions of 1798.-See Appendix K.
SPECIAL MESSAGE OF GOV. TICHENOR, AND ACTION OF THE ASSEMBLY THEREON.-Oct. 1799.
Oct. 19.-Mr. Speaker informed the House he had received a communication from his Excellency the Governor, which he then read as followeth, to wit:
"Gentlemen of the House of Representatives,
"Herewith will be laid before you by my secretary, an official correspondence between the executive of the province of lower Canada and myself, relative to, and certain other papers illustrative of the unfortunate circumstances of the death of John Gregg, who was drowned in lake Champlain, while in the custody of certain citizens of this state, who had inconsiderately arrested the deceased within the territory of his Britanic Majesty. Bills of indictment, charging these citizens with the murder of said Gregg, were found in the Colonial Court of King's Bench of Criminal Jurisdiction in Montreal, and a demand to deliver over these citizens for trial was made in consequence thereof.
"Although this was a business appropriately of an executive kind, yet as the subject of it has excited much speculation, under the advice of the Council I have thought fit to acquaint you of the measures adopted by me, for the adjustment and termination of an occurrence of so serious and delicate a nature, and hope they will meet the approbation of the honorable House. With great respect and consideration, I have the honor to be your obedient servant, ISAAC TICHENOR.
"In Council, 19th Oct. 1799."
The official papers communicated by his Excellency to the House were then read. Whereupon, Resolved, that Mr. [Udney] Hay, Mr. [Jonathan] Robinson, and Mr. [Rev. Asa] Lyon be a committee to prepare and report a resolution expressive of the approbation of this House of the conduct of his Excellency, in accommodating the differences which had arisen between the governments of the province of lower Canada and this state in consequence of the unfortunate death of John Gregg.
Oct. 22. Mr. Hay. from the committee appointed to pepare and report a resolution expressive of the approbation of this House of the conduct of his Excellency the Governor, in accommodating the differences which had arisen between the executives of the province of lower Canada and this State, on account of the unfortunate death of John Gregg, made a report which read as followeth :
"To his Excellency Isaac Tichenor, Esquire.
"We had the honor, on Saturday last, to receive a communication of your official correspondence with his Excellency General Prescott, late Governor of Canada, and since his departure with Lieutenant Governor Milnes, who now presides over that province. The unhappy affair, which occasioned that correspondence, had long given painful anxiety to the citizens of this state.
'Printed Assembly Journal for 1799, pp. 8-10, 55, 56.
"From the good understanding which has ever existed between your Excellency and this House, we flatter ourselves that you will be pleased with being informed that no sooner was the whole of your communication read, than a unanimous vote was passed, ordering an address of thanks to be presented to you, for your signal services on this occasion.
Accept, then, our assurances that your address and good management, in bringing this unfortunate business to so happy and speedy an issue, has encreased, if possible, the very high esteem we have ever entertained of your patriotism, your candour, your abilities, your integrity.1 "Be pleased, Sir, to inform the honorable Lieutenant Governor Milnes that we entertain a very high sense of the liberal, candid and delicate manner in which this extremely unfortunate affair has, from its commencement to its termination, been treated by his predecessor and by him. Their conduct, when our sense thereof is known to our fellow citizens, must tend to encrease the general desire for the continuation of a mutual, a free, and amicable intercourse with the country over which he presides.
"Be pleased, likewise, to assure that Gentleman, that as the constitutional organ of our constituents, we can with safety pledge ourselves that they entertain too high a sense, and are too jealous of their own rights, ever to infringe, voluntarily and intentionally, those of any friendly nation."
Ordered, That the said report be accepted.
John Griggs was a resident of Alburgh, for whose arrest John Allen, a deputy sheriff of Franklin county, held a warrant. When Allen, with assistants, came to make the arrest, Griggs had taken refuge in a brother's house, which was in Canada, a very short distance north of the boundary line. Nevertheless Allen and his men crossed the line, broke into the room of Griggs, arrested and bound him, put him into a sleigh, and proceeded southward on the ice of the lake. In passing round "the tongue" of Alburgh, the party broke through the ice, and Griggs was drowned. Allen and his associates were indicted at Montreal for murder, and the governor of Canada applied for the delivery of the indicted persons for trial in Canada. Thereupon the correspondence ensued between Gov. Tichenor and the governors of Canada, and through Tichenor's explanations and apologies the matter was happily accommodated.' The Assembly Journal for 1799 shows that a court of inquiry on this subject had been convened at Alburgh, in May of that year. Doubtless the court found that Griggs, as a citizen of Alburgh, was legally liable to arrest, and that his death was accidental. Of course an apology was due for invading the territory of Canada, and Gov. Tichenor made one in ample and proper terms.
To appreciate justly this strong expression of personal favor to Gov. Tichenor, it should be remembered that the author of this address was a leader of the political opponents of the governor in the House, and that the address was adopted by a unanimous vote.
Printed Assembly Journal of 1799, pp. 48-9, 64-5, 74. 3Vt. Historical Magazine, Vol. II, p. 496.
SPEECH OF GOV. TICHENOR.-1800.
IN ASSEMBLY, Oct. 10, 1800.
His excellency the governor and council appeared in the house, and after having taken their seats, his excellency the governor delivered the following speech:
Gentlemen of the Council and Gentlemen of the house of Representatives:
In obedience to the voice of the people, it is again become my duty to meet you in General Assembly.
The affairs of Government will always be attended with difficulty, and will require much application, prudence and firmness in those on whom is devolved the arduous task of conducting its interests. It is in confidence that I shall be favored with your cordial assistance and support, that I enter upon the office and duties which the Constitution has assigned to the Chief Magistrate of this State. Collected from the different parts of the Commonwealth, you must be intimately acquainted with the various situations and circumstances of your Constituents, and with such information, it will be in your power to pursue the public welfare with candor and success, in all the consultations and measures of the present session.
The business particularly entrusted to me, by the legislature at their last Session, has been strictly attended to, and will be the subject of a future message.-[The claim of Indians to land in Vermont. ]
The Auditor will lay before you a general statement of the accounts of the Treasury department; a review of the accounts of that department for several years past, when contrasted with those of former years, will show an increase of wealth in our state, and a degree of economy in the management of our finances that must be pleasing to my fellow citizens. I however consider it to be my duty once more to submit to your consideration the propriety and necessity of redeeming the public securities now in circulation, upon which, without any benefit to our Government, we are annually incurring an accumulated interest. Without adopting a measure of this kind, no complete adjustment of the Treasurer's account can be effected.
The Constitution and Laws of our Country have made it the duty of the Legislature, at this Session, to choose Electors of President and Vice President of the United States. This consideration gives a peculiar importance to the business of this Session. Those men, who are to be immediately instrumental in the appointment of persons who are to fill the highest offices our Country can bestow, ought to be selected from the most worthy of our fellow Citizens. It is sincerely to be hoped, that the importance of the crisis may induce such Electors, when chosen, to unite their suffrages on men who are attached to the interests of their country, and who are the friends of order and good government. Should the Chief magistrate of the Union be destitute of the virtues of a Real patriot; should a predilection for foreign principles, or an ardor for foreign theories, influence him to depart from the sober maxims of our ancestors, and from those principles of national interest which WASHINGTON recommended, in his last legacy to the people, and which ADAMS has so happily pursued in his Executive administration of the general government; in a word, should our first Magistrate be other than an Independ ent American, the most injurious consequences to us and our posterity are justly to be apprehended.
From the situation of this State, agriculture must be a primary and essential object of attention; separated from harbours of commerce, the inhabitants of Vermont must, at all times, look for support from the labors and productions of the field. And it is with much gratitude to