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PROCEEDINGS AND DEBATES
THE SENATE OF THE UNITED STATES,
AT THE SECOND SESSION OF THE TENTH CONGRESS, BEGUN AT THE CITY OF
WASHINGTON, MONDAY, NOVEMBER 7, 1808.
Monday, November 7, 1808.
on the President of the United States and noConformably to the act, passed the last session, tify him that a quorum of the two Houses is entitled "An act to alter the time for the next assembled. meeting of Congress,” the second session of the A message from the House of Representatenth Congress commenced this day; and the tives informed the Senate that a quorum of the Senate assembled at the City of Washington.
House is assembled and ready to proceed to business; and that the House had appointed a com
mittee on their part, jointly, with the committee GEORGE CLINTON, Vice President of the United appointed on the part of the Senate, to wait on Siales and President of the Senate.
the President of United States and notify him Nicholas Gilman and Nanum PARKER, from that a quorum of the two Houses is assembled. New Hampshire.
Resolved, That each Senator be supplied, durTIMOTHY PICKERING, from Massachusetts. ing the present session, with three such newspa
James Hillhouse and Chauncey Goodrich, pers, printed in any of the States, as he may from Connecticut.
choose, provided that the same be 'furnished at BENJAMIN HOWLAND and Elisha MATHEWSON, the usual rate for the annual charge of such pafrom Rhode Island.
pers; and, provided, also, that if any Senator STEPHEN R. Bradley and JONATHAN ROBIN shall choose to take any newspapers other than 30N, from Vermont.
daily papers, he shall be supplied with as many Samuel L. Mirchill and John Smith, from such papers as shall not exceed the price of three New York
daily papers. John Condit and Aaron KITCHEL, from New The PRESIDENT communicated a resolution and Jersey.
memorial of the House of Representatives of the SAMUEL Maclay, from Pennsylvania. Mississippi Territory, signed by the Speaker, SAMUEL White, from Delaware.
praying an extension of the time for payment of William B. GILES, from Virginia.
ihe first instalment for the purchase of lands, due James TURNER, from North Carolina. January, 1809; also, praying that a bill under
Thomas SCMTER and John GAILLARD, from consideration in the House of Representatives at South Carolina.
their last session, for establishing a Federal court William H. CRAWFORD, from Georgia. in that district, should not pass into a law, for
BUCKNER THRUSTON and John Pope, from reasons mentioned in the memorial; which was Kentucky
read and ordered to lie for consideration. DANIEL SMITH, from Tennessee.
Resolved. That James MATHERS, Sergeant-atEDWARD Tiffin, from Ohio.
Arms and Doorkeeper to the Senate, be, and he JAMES LLOYD, Jud., appointed a Senator by the is hereby, authorized to employ one assistant and Legislature of the State of Massachusetts, to sup- iwo horses, for the purpose of performing such ply the place of John Quincy Adams, resigned, services as are usually required by the Doortook his seat in the Senate, and produced his keeper to the Senate; and that the sum of twentycredentials, which were read, and the oath pre- eight dollars be allowed him weekly for that purscribed by law was administered to him. pose, to commence with, and remain during the
Ordered, That the Secretary acquaint the session, and for twenty days after. House of Representatives that a quorum of the
On motion, by Mr. Bradley, Senate is assembled and ready to proceed to bu- Resolved, That two Chaplains, of different desiness; and that Messrs. BRADLEY and Pope be nominations, be appointed to Congress during the a committee on the part of the Senate, together present session, one by each House, who shall with such committee as may be appointed by the interchange weekly. House of Representatives on their part, to wait Mr. BRADLEY reported, from the joint commit
President's Annual Message.
tee, that they had waited on the President of the Orders. The arrangement has, nevertheless, been United States, agreeably to order, and that the rejected. President of the United States informed the com This candid and liberal experiment having thus mittee that he would make a communication to failed, and no other event having occurred on which a the two Houses at 12 o'clock to-morrow.
suspension of the embargo by the Executive was authorized, it necessarily remains in the extent originally
given to it. We have the satisfaction, however, to reflect, Tuesday, November 8.
that, in return for the privations imposed by the measSamuel Smith and Philip REED, from the ure, and which our fellow-citizens in general have borne State of Maryland, attended.
with patriotism, it has had the important effects of The following Message was received from the saving our mariners, and our vast mercantile property, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES:
as well as of affording time for prosecuting the defen
sive and provisional measures called for by the occasion. To the Senate and House of
It has demonstrated to foreign nations the moderation and Representatives of the United States :
firmness which govern our councils, and to our citizens It would have been a source, fellow-citizens, of much the necessity of uniting in support of the laws and the gratification, if our last communications from Europe rights of their country, and has thus long frustrated had enabled me to inform you that the belligerent na- those usurpations and spoliations which, if resisted, intions, whose disregard of neutral rights has been so volved war, if submitted to, sacrificed a vital principle destructive to our commerce, had become awakened to of our national independence. the duty and true policy of revoking their unrighteous Under a continuance of the belligerent measures, edicts. That no means might be omitted to produce which, in defiance of laws which consecrate the rights this salutary effect, I lost no time in availing myself of neutrals, overspread the ocean with danger, it will of the act authorizing a suspension, in whole, or in rest with the wisdom of Congress to decide on the part, of the several embargo laws. Our Ministers at course best adapted to such a state of things; and London and Paris were instructed to explain to the bringing with them, as they do, from every part of the respective Governments there, our disposition to exer- Union, the sentiments of our constituents, my conficise the authority in such manner as would withdraw dence is strengthened that, in forming this decision, the pretext on which aggressions were originally found they will, with an unerring regard to the essential ed, and open the way for a renewal of that commer- rights and interests of the nation, weigh and compare cial intercourse which it was alleged, on all sides, had the painful alternatives out of which a choice is to be been reluctantly obstructed. As each of those Gov- made. Nor should I do justice to the virtues which, ernments had pledged its readiness to concur in re on other occasions, have inarked the character of our nouncing a measure which reached its adversary fellow-citizens, if I did not cherish an equal confidence through the incontestable rights of neutrals only, and that the alternative chosen, whatever it may be, will as the measure had been assumed by each as a retalia- be maintained with all the fortitude and patriotism tion for an asserted acquiescence in the aggressions of which the crisis ought to inspire. the other, it was reasonably expected that the occasion The documents containing the correspondences on would have been seized by both for evincing the sincer- the subject of foreign edicts against our commerce, ity of their professions, and for restoring to the com with the instructions given to our Ministers at London merce of the United States its legitimate freedom. The į and Paris, are now laid before you. instructions of our Ministers, with respect to the differ The communications made to Congress at their last ent belligerents, were necessarily modified with a re- session explained the posture in which the close of the ference to their different circumstances, and to the con- discussions relating to the attack by a British ship of dition annexed by law to the Executive power of sus war on the frigate Chesapeake, left a subject on which pension requiring a degree of security to our commerce the nation had manifested so honorable a sensibility. which would not result from a repeal of the decrees of Every view of what had passed authorized a belief France. Instead of a pledge therefore of a suspension that immediate steps would be taken by the British of the embargo as to her, in case of such a repeal, Government for redressing a wrong, which, the more it was presumed that a suflicient inducement might it was investigated, appeared the more clearly to rebe found in other considerations, and particularly inquire what had not been provided for in the special the change produced by a compliance with our just mission. It is found that no steps have been taken for demands by one belligerent, and a refusal by the other, the purpose. On the contrary, it will be seen, in the in the relations between the other and the United documents laid before you, that the inadmissible preStates. To Great Britain, whose power on tire ocean liminary, which obstructed the adjustment, is still adis so ascendant, it was deemed not inconsistent with hered to; and, moreover, that it is now brought into that condition to state, explicitly, on her rescinding her connexion with the distinct and irrelative case of the orders in relation to the United States, their trade Orders in Council. The instructions which had been would be opened with her, and remain shut to her given to our Minister at London, with a view to facilienemy, in case of his failure to rescind his decrees also. tate, if necessary, the reparation claimed by the United From France no answer has been received, nor any States, are included in the documents communicated. indication that the requisite change in her decrees is Our relations with the other Powers of Europe have contemplated. The favorable reception of the pro- undergone no material changes since our last session. position to Great Britain was the less to be doubted, as The important negotiations with Spain, which had her Orders of Council had not only been referred for been alternately suspended and resumed, necessarily their vindication to an acquiescence on the part of the experience a pause under the extraordinary and interUnited States no longer to be pretended, but as the esting crisis which distinguishes her internal situation. arrangement proposed, whilst it resisted the illegal de With the Barbary Powers we continue in harmony, crees of France, involved, moreover, substantially, the with the exception of an unjustifiable proceeding of the precise advantages professedly aimed at by the British Dey of Algiers towards our Consul to that Regency,
President's Annual Message.
Its character and circumstances are now laid before as soon as it could be done by bodies of new recruits. you, and will enable you to decide how far it may, By the aid of these, and of the armed vessels called either now or hereafter, call for any measures not into service in other quarters, the spirit of disobediwithin the limits of the Executive authority.
ence and abuse, which manifested itself early, and With our Indian neighbors the public peace has been with sensible effect while we were unprepared to meet steadily maintained. Some instances of individual it, has been considerably repressed. wrong have, as at other times, taken place, but in no Considering the extraordinary character of the times wise implicating the will of the nation. Beyond the in which we live, our attention should unremittingly Mississippi, the lowas, the Sacs, and the Alabamas, be fixed on the safety of our country. For a people have delivered up for trial and punishment individuals who are free, and who mean to remain so, a well or from among themselves, accused of murdering citizens ganized and armed militia is their best security. It is of the United States. On this side of the Mississippi, therefore incumbent on us, at every meeting, to revise the Creeks are exerting themselves to arrest offenders the condition of the militia, and to ask ourselves if it of the same kind; and the Choctaws have manifested is prepared to repel a powerful enemy at every point their readiness and desire for amicable and just arrange- of our territories exposed to invasion ? Some of the ments respecting depredations committed by disorderly States have paid a laudable attention to this object; persons of their tribe. And, generally, from a convic- but every degree of neglect is to be found among others. tion that we consider them as a part of ourselves, and Congress alone having the power to produce an unicherish with sincerity their rights and interests, the form state of preparation in this great organ of defence, attachment of the Indian tribes is gaining strength the interests which they so deeply feel in their own daily, is extending from the nearer to the more remote, and their country's security will present this as among and will amply requite us for the justice and friendship the most important objects of their deliberation. practised towards them. Husbandry and household Under the acts of March 11 and April 23, respectmanufactures are advancing among them, more rapidly ing arms, the difficulty of procuring them from abroad, with the southern than northern tribes, from circum- during the present situation and dispositions of Europe, stances of soil and climate; and one of the two great induced us to direct our whole efforts to the means of divisions of the Cherokee nation have now under con- internal supply. The public factories have therefore sideration to solicit the citizenship of the United States, been enlarged, additional machineries erected, and, in and to be identified with us in laws and government, proportion as artificers can be found or formed, their in such progressive manner as we shall think best. effect, already more than doubled, may be increased so
In consequence of the appropriations of the last ses as to keep pace with the yearly increase of the militia. sion of Congress for the security of our seaport towns | The annual sums appropriated by the latter act have and harbors, such works of defence have been erected been directed to the encouragement of private factories as seemed to be called for by the situation of the sev- of arms, and contracts have been entered into with eral places, their relative importance, and the scale of individual undertakers to nearly the amount of the first, expense indicated by the amount of the appropriation. year's appropriation. These works will chiefly be finished in the course of The suspension of our foreign commerce, produced the present season, except at New York and New Or- by the injustice of the belligerent Powers, and the conleans, where most was to be done; and although a sequent losses and sacrifices of our citizens, are subjects great proportion of the last appropriation has been ex of just concern. The situation into which we have pended on the former place, yet some further views thus been forced has impelled us to apply a portion of will be submitted to Congress for rendering its security our industry and capital to internal manufactures and entirely adequate against naval enterprise. A view of improvements. The extent of this conversion is daily what has been done at the several places, and of what increasing, and little doubt remains that the establishis proposed to be done, shall be communicated as soon ments formed and forming will, under the auspices of as the several reports are received.
cheaper materials and subsistence, the freedom of labor Of the gun-boats authorized by the act of December from taxation with us, and of protecting duties and last, it has been thought necessary to build only one prohibitions, become permanent. The commerce with hundred and three in the present year. These, with the Indians too, within our own boundaries, is likely to those before possessed, are sufficient for the harbors receive abundant aliment from the same internal source, and waters most exposed, and the residue will require and will secure to them peace and the progress of civ. little time for their construction when it shall be deemed ilization, undisturbed by practices hostile to both. necessary
The accounts of the receipts and expenditures during Under the act of the last session for raising an ad- the year ending on the thirtieth day of September last, ditional military force, so many officers were imme- being not yet made up, a correct statement will herediately appointed as were necessary for carrying on after be transmitted from the Treasury. In the meanthe business of recruiting, and in proportion as it ad-time, it is ascertained that the receipts have amounted vanced, others have been added. We have reason to to near eighteen millions of dollars, which, with the believe their success has been satisfactory, although eight millions and a half in the Treasury at the besuch returns have not yet been received as enable me ginning of the year, have enabled us, after meeting the to present you a statement of the number engaged. current demands, and interest incurred, to pay two
I have not thought it necessary, in the course of the millions three hundred thousand dollars of the princilast season, to call for any general detachments of pal of our funded debt, and left us in the Treasury, on militia or of volunteers, under the laws passed for that that day, near fourteen millions of dollars. Of these, purpose. For the ensuing season, however, they will five millions three hundred and fifty thousand dollars be required to be in readiness should their service be will be necessary to pay what will be due on the first wanted. Some small and special detachments have day of January next, which will complete the reimbursebeen necessary to maintain the laws of embargo on ment of the eight per cent. stock. These payments, that portion of our northern frontier which offered with those made in the six years and a half preceding, peculiar facilities for evasion, but these were replaced I will have extinguished thirty-three millions five hun
dred and eighty thousand dollars of the principal of the
Thursday, November 10. funded debt, being the whole which could be paid or purchased within the limits of the law and our con
Mr. Smith of Maryland, submitted the followtracts; and the amount of principal thus discharged ing motion : will have liberated the revenue from about two millions Resolved, That a committee be appointed to inquire of dollars of interest, and added that sum annually to whether any, and, if any, what, amendments are necesthe disposable surplus. The probable accumulation of sary to the militia laws of the United States. the surplusses of revenue beyond what can be applied The following motion was subinitted by Mr. to the payment of the public debt, whenever the free- Giles: dom and safety of our commerce shall be restored, merits the consideration of Congress. Shall it lie un-ident of the United States as relates to the several em
Resolved, That so much of the Message of the Presproductive in the public vaults ? Shall the revenue be reduced? Or, shall it not rather be appropriated to bargo laws, be referred to a select committee, with the improvements of roads, canals, rivers, education, instructions to examine and report whether any further and other great foundations of prosperity and union, measures are now necessary to enforce a due observunder the powers which Congress may already possess, er any further modification thereof be expedient at this
ance thereof during their continuance; and, also, whethor such amendment of the Constitution as may be ap- time, and that such committee have leave to report by proved by the States ? While uncertain of the course
bill or otherwise. of things, the time may be advantageously employed in obtaining the powers necessary for a system of im
On making this motion, Mr. Giles observed, provement, should that be thought best.
that, as the resolution he had the honor of moving Availing myself of this, the last occasion which will respecting the embargo laws, was intended only occur, of addressing the two Houses of the Legislature as an inquiry into that subject, which was deemed at their meeting, I cannot omit the expression of my important to all, and if to be further acted upon, sincere gratitude for the repeated proofs of confidence requiring immediate attention; and, as it did not manifested to me by themselves and their predecess
essors commit the Senate upon any point in relation to since my call to the administration, and the many in those laws, he hoped that the committee might dulgences experienced at their hands. The same grate- be now appointed. ful acknowledgments are due to my fellow-citizens gen Mr. Goodrich requested that the motion might erally, whose support has been my great encouragement not be acted upon until 10-morrow, to which Mr. under all embarrassments. In the transaction of their Giles agreed. business I cannot have escaped error. It is incident to our imperfect nature. But I may say with truth my lain on their part, in pursuance of the resolution
The Senate proceeded to the election of a Chaperrors have been of the understanding, not of intention, and that the advancement of their rights and in- of the two Houses, and the whole nuinber of votes "terests has been the constant motive for every measure. collected was 20, of which the Reverend Mr. On these considerations I solicit their indulgence. Look- / Elliott had 11, and was accordingly elected. ing forward with anxiety to their future destinies, I trust, that, in their steady character, unshaken by difficulties, in their love of liberty, obedience to law, and support
Friday, November 11. of the public authorities, I see a sure guarantee of the Mr. WHITE submitted the following motion : permanence of our Republic; and retiring from the
Resolved, That the President of the United States charge of their affairs, I carry with me the consolation cause to be laid before the Senate copies of all the orof a firm persuasion that Heaven has in store for our ders and decrees of the belligerent Powers of Europe, beloved country long ages to come of prosperity and passed since one thousand seven hundred and ninety, happiness.
two, affecting the commercial rights of the United NOVEMBER 8, 1808.
States. The Message and papers were in part read, and Mr.Hillhouse submitted the following motion: one thousand copies ordered to be printed for the
Resolved, That it is expedient that the act, entitled use of the Senate.
"An act laying an embargo on all ships and vessels in A confidential Message was also received, with the ports and harbors of the United States," and the sundry documents therein referred to, which were several acts supplementary thereto, be repealed; and read for consideration.
that a committee be appointed to prepare and report a
bill for that purpose. Wednesday, November 9.
Mr. Lloyd submitted the following motion : JESSE FRANKLIN, from the State of North Caro
Resolved, That the President of the United States lina, attended.
be requested to cause to be laid before the Senate a The Senate proceeded in reading the documents statement showing the number of vessels which have referred to in the Message of the President of the departed from the United States, with permission, beUnited States of yesterday.
tween the 22d of December, 1807, and the 30th SepOn motion by Mr. REED,
tember, 1808; specifying the names of the vessels and Resolved, That a committee be appointed to inquire their owners; the size of the vessels ; the date of their into the state and condition of the Chainber prepared clearances; the ports or places for which they were for the Senate to convene in during the present session, back to the United States in each of such vessels.
destined ; and the amount authorized to be brought and to report whether it is safe and expedient to continue therein, or to remove to some other apartment. The Senate proceeded to consider the motion
Ordered, That Messrs. Reed, Wuite, and made yesterday, that a committee be appointed to BRADLEY, be the committee.
inquire whether any, and, if any, what, amend.