Imágenes de páginas
PDF
EPUB

The president, in his communications to Congress at the opening of the ensuing session, alluding to the democratic societies, as "self-created, societies," ranked them, among the causes of the late insurrection. This, operating like the Ithurial spear, dissipated these Frenchified demons; and put the final blow to their ostensible existence. The party next appeared, under the denomination of "Republican," without any reformation of its principles, or views—hereafter to be further demonstrated.

in the mean time, the legislature of Kentucky held its November session; and passed "An act authorizing persons to relinquish their rights to land." These relinquishments were to the commonwealth; and had the effect to free the party, from the future payment of tax on the land relinquished. An amendment to the constitution of the United States, whereby states were exempted from suit, by individuals, was ratified, on the part of Kentucky, at the same session.

Franklin county was created, to have effect from and after the 10th day of May, 1795: "beginning at the Scott line where it leaves the south fork of Eikhorn; thence a straight line to strike the Kentucky river, and crossing the same one mile above the mouth of Glenn's creek; thence up the same to the mouth of the Cove Spring branch, on the south side thereof; thence up the said branch to the Cove spring; thence west to Washington line; thence with the same down Salt river to the mouth of Crooked creek; thence up the main fork of Crooked creek, to the head thereof; thence with the dividing ridge to the junction of the forks of Benson; thence down the Benson, to where the old wagon road from Boone's old station to Harrodsburgh crosses, at the mouth of the most northwardly fork of Benson; thence a direct line to the mouth of Eikhorn; thence down Kentucky to the mouth thereof; thence up the Ohio to the Scott line; thence with said line to the beginning."

"An act for establishing the Kentucky academy, and incor» jiorating the trustees thereof," passed at this session. Trustees were appointed, and incorporated; with power to fix on a permanent seat for the institution; and hold to them and their successors, lands, tenements, rents, goods and chattels, which should be given or devised, for the "seminary." They were also to collect subscriptions made for the Transylvania presbytery j and convert such, as were not in cash, to that article.— *The president of the said academy shall be a minister of the gospel, of the most approved abilities in literature, and acquaintance in mankind, that may be obtained, and zealously engaged to promote the interest of real and practical religion."

Other details were inserted; and the whole concluded as follows: "No endeavours shall be used by the president, or other teachers, to influence the mind of any student, to change his religious tenets, or embrace those of a different denomination, any further than is consistent with the general belief of the gospel system, and the practice of vital piety."

"An act for erecting a linen manufactory in Georgetown," deserves to be noticed, as one among other premature attempts of the kind. Nothing efficient was done.

Campbell county was created, to have effect from and after the 10th of May, 1795: "beginning on the Ohio at the mouth of Locust creek, on the lower side thereof; thence a direct line to the mouth of the north fork of Licking; thence by a direct line to the mouth of Crooked creek, on the south fork of Licking; thence up said Crooked creek, to the head of the main branch thereof; thence west to the dividing line between the counties of Scott and Woodford; thence along that line to the mouth of Big Bone Lick creelc,on the Ohio river; thence up the Ohio to the beginning."

This rapid increase of counties, by a partition of territory, rs to be considered as an evidence of the extension of improvements by new settlers, and as evincing an increasing population.

There were other proceedings in this general assembly, which merit attention. Mr. Adair reported, from the committee of the whole on the state of the commonwealth, a preamble and resolutions; which were agreed to by a vote of the house of representatives, twenty-one to five, as follows:

"Whereas it appears to this general assembly, that the cmntuissioner who was appointed by the president of the United States, in order to be sent to this state, with communications on the subject of the negotiations relative to the navigation of the Mississippi, has not arrived; and probably will not, during the present session: therefore,

"Resolved, That the senators in congress be, and they are hereby instructed to require information of the steps which. have been taken to obtain the navigation of the Mississippi, and to transmit such information to the executive of this state.

"Resolved, That the senators and representatives of this state in congress, be, and they are hereby instructed to use their endeavours to obtain a repeal of the law imposing a duty on distilled spirits.

"And whereas it appears to this general assembly, that it is not only essential to the honour and dignity of the general government, but also to the particular safety of this state, that the western posts, now withheld by the British government, contrary to solemn treaty, should be surrendered to the United States:

"Resolved, That the senators of this state in congress, be and they are hereby instructed, if it should not already be obtained, to endeavour to obtain those posts.

"Resolved, That we consider it a duty which we owe to ourselves and constituents, to pursue such measures as may have a tendency to preserve mutual harmony, confidence, and good will, between the citizens of this state, and the other component parts of the general government, in every constitutional effort for obtaining and securing to the citizens of this, and other states, their several rights and privileges; and should the peaceable measures pursued by congress for the attainment of the western posts, and the navigation of the Mississippi, fail of success, we consider it the duty of the Kentucky people to use every necessary exertion on their part, in concert with, and to render effectual any other measures, which may be adopted by the general government, for obtaining those interesting objects.

"Resolved, That the governor be, and he is hereby required to transmit the foregoing resolutions to the senators and repre. sentatives from this state in congress."—Being sent to the senate, it concurred. They speak for themselves, nor need a comment,

[graphic]

Another resolution, characteristic of recent impressions, is also Worthy of insertion. It was recommended to the people who had stills, to enter them for taxation with the proper officer, and to pay the taxes until the law should be repealed!!

A corroboration of the good temper of this assembly towards the general government, is the election of Humphrey Marshall to the senate of the United States, to fill the vacancy occasioned by the expiration of the time of John Edwards, who had drawn out, pursuant to the constitution of the United States. On this occasion, the factions opposed to the administration of the federal government, both French and Spanish, with mortal antipathy to Mr. Marshall's politics, brought John Breckenridge, Esq. then, or recently, president of the Democratic society of Lexington, to oppose him. The majority in favour of Marshall, was but small. And without doubt, that he had the majority, is to be ascribed to the recent success of federal measures, under Generals Wayne and Lee.

At this session, an attempt was made to remove George Muter and Benjamin Sebastian, two of the judges of the court of appeals, from office; by the address of two-thirds of both branches of the general assembly; for an opinion and decree given by them (Caleb Wallace dissenting) in the case of Ken* ton and McConnell. This was a controversy touching reciprocal claims to the same land, under grants by the commissioners, for settlements an pre-emptions.

A motion had b en made by Kenton's counsel, for a rehear ing of the cause—two of them stating in writing that there was error in the decree, agreeably to a positive rule, the court was bound to rehear it: so that it was open for further argument and correction; although from the solemn and deliberate manner in which the former decree had been made, there was no reason to expect a change, should the same judges continue to form the court. Soon after the proceedings in court, measures had been taken for publishing the opinion and decree of the majority, and also the arguments of Judge Wallace in support of his dissent; which placed the subject pretty fully before the public; and induced a very general opinion, that the decision Vol. H. W

Was erroneous as to that particular case; and that it, by consc* quence, would prostrate a very numerous class of the settlement and pre-emption claims, then considered not only legal, but meritorious. The public mind was, hence, considerably agitated. An address, in the nature of a memorial and remonstrance, to the general assembly, was drawn up, and subscribed; which being presented, brought the subject before the house of representatives. It was taken into consideration—whereupon it was resolved to summon the two judges, of whom complaint was made, to appear; and that a copy of the memorial be annexed to the summons. . This being done, and a copy left with each judge, then in Frankfort, they promptly replied by letter, addressed to the speaker of the house; in substance, that they had received the summons, and were in town—that they could find no charge against them that they could or ought to answer—that the legality of an adjudication of the court of appeals, or an opinion of a judge thereof in any cause, could not be properly or constitutionally examinable by a single branch of the legislature: and « formal protest was made against any attempt of a single branch of the general assembly to revise the decisions of the supreme court. They then say, that justice to the judge, and the independence of the court, demand, that they be proceeded against according to the mode of trial prescribed in the constitution. And finally, professing to confide in the candour of the house, and their regard for justice, give assurance that they will hold themselves in readiness to answer any specific charge which may be brought forward against them in the manner the constitution" prescribes, at any time whatever.

This letter, bearing date the 19th of December, was presented the same day; and being read, produced a general conviction, that their honours had disobeyed the summons, and did not mean to appear. Some indignation was produced by the conclusion. It being however considered, that their appearance, was a matter of their own concern, and by no means necessary to the constitutional course of proceeding on the part of the house; a preamble and resolution, which had been laid

[graphic]
« AnteriorContinuar »