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March 14, 1836. }
measure tending to that effect. The utmost that had or interests of his constituents should at any time be carbeen done with any petition on the subject was to move ried, he felt that, in such a case, a severe responsibility its reference to the committee to which such papers would rest upon him. He should, therefore, give his have usually gone, and to desire its fair consideration. vote in favor of the motion. This fact had not passed unobserved in this debate of three The question was then taken on the motion to reject months, for it had been often remarked on this floor, by the prayer of the petition, and decided as follows: those who had addressed the Senate, that but one opin Yeas-Messrs. Benton, Black, Brown, Bichanan, ion prevailed in Congress as to the expediency of at- Clay, Crittenden, Cuthbert, Ewing of Hinois, Ewing of tempting to legislate at this time, and but one opinion as Ohio, Goldsborough, Grundy, Hill, Hubbard, King of to the rights secured to the States by the constitution. Alabama, King of Georgia, Leigh, Linn, McKean, Not satisfied with this extraordinary unanimity, this bigh Moore, Nicholas, Niles, Porter, Preston, Robbins, Robproof of forbearance and conciliation, this motion is inson, Ruggles, Shepley, Tallmadge, Tipton, Tomlinpressed upon the Senate, to be sent forth as a kind of son, Walker, Wall, White, Wright--34. inexorable determination. In his judgment, it was vol Nais- Messrs. Davis, Hendricks, Knight, Prentiss, untary, because uncalled for and unnecessary; indeed, it Swift, Webster-6. would fail to produce the harmony and secure the in So the prayer of the petition was rejected. fuence upon public sentiment which its friends appear. After this decision, Mr. WEBSTER gave notice that ed so anxiously to look for. Every man must, on questions he had in his hand several similar petitions, which he here, be guided by his own judgment, his own sense of had forborne to present till this from Pennsylvania public duty, and obligation to the constilution and the should be disposed of, and that he should now, on an people. He had considered this matter with anxious early occasion, present them, and move to dispose of attention, and had observed what was passing here and them in the way in which it had been his opinion from elsewhere, and candor called on him to avow that he the first that all such petitions should have been treated; saw no where any cause for the great alarm and excite. ( that is, to refer them to the committee for inquiry and ment which pervaded some minds in regard to the safety consideration. of the Union. In this he concurred with the Senator On motion of Mr. CLAY, the Senate proceeded to from Kentucky, (Mr. Clar.] Neither the petition on the consideration of executive business; which the debate had arisen, nor any other that he had After which, the Senate adjourned to Monday. seen, proposed directly or indirectly to disturb the Union, unless the abolition of slavery in this District, or the suppression or regulation of the slave trade within it,
Monday, March 14. would have that effect. For himself, Mr. D. believed Mr. LEIGH presented the credentials of W.C. Rives, no purpose could be further than this from the minds of elected a Senator from Virginia, in the room of JOHN the petitioners. He could not determine what thoughts | Tyler, resigned. or motives might be in the minds of men, but he judged Mr. Rives was then qualified, and took his seat. by what was revealed; and he could not persuade him. self that these petitioners were not attached to the
LAND BILL. Union, and that they had (as had been suggested) Mr. EWING, of Ohio, moved that the Senate proany ulterior purpose of making this District the head. ceed to consider the bill to appropriate for a limited time quarters of future operation–The strong-hold of anti-the proceeds of the public lands, &c. slavery—the stepping-stone to an attack upon the constitutional rights of the South. He was obliged to re-would not be pressed, but that the Senate would propudiate these inferences as unjust, for he had seen no ceed to the consideration of executive business, which proof to sustain them in any of the petitions that had had been so long delayed. come here. The petitioners entertained opinions coin. Mr. EWING suggested that it had been considered cident with their fellow-citizens as to the power of Con. best to postpone tlie executive business until the Senate gress to legislate in regard to slavery in this District; should be full. Some Senators were now indisposed, and being desirous that slavery should cease here, if it, and in a few days it would be more likely to be full. could be abolished upon just principles; and, if not, that Mr. WALL stated that he should be obliged to quit the traffic carried on here froin other quarters should be the city tn-morrow on indispensable business. suppressed or regulated, they came here to ask Congress Mr. EWING and Mr. CALHOUN advocated the to investigate the matter. This was all; and he could taking up of the land bill, as a subject of very great imsee no evidence in it of a clandestine purpose to disreportance; and Mr. EWING called for the yeas and nays, gard the constitution or to disturb the Union.
which were ordered, on his motion. On the whole, he had determined to vote steadily The question was taken, after some opposition from against propositions hostile to a comunitment of the peti- Mr. BENTON, and decided as follows: tion, having indulged the hope that such a result might YEAs--Messrs. Calhoun, Clay, Clayton, Crittendleri, possibly be attained, and believing, as he did, that its Davis, Ewing of Ohio, Hendricks, Knight, Leigti, Mceffect upon the public mind would be far more effica- Kean, Mangim, Naudain, Porter, Prentiss, Preston, cious and salutary than a hasty rejection of the prayer Robbins, Southard, Swift, Tomlinson, Webster-20. as soon as the petition enters ibis chamber, as proposed Nays-Messrs. Benton, Black, Brown, Buchanan, by my friend from Pennsylvania.
Cuthbert, Ewing of Illinois, Grundy, Hill, Hubbard, Mr. WALKER stated that he had voted for the mo. King of Alabama, King of Georgia, Linn, Moore, Mortion not to receive the petition; but as that motion, ris, Nicholas, Niles, Rives, Robinson, Ruggles, Shepley, which was the strongest
, had failed, he should feel him. Tallmadge, Tipton, Walker, Wall, White, Wright--26. self bound to vote for that which was the next strongest The Senate then receded from their amendments to proposition, which he considered to be the motion to the bill to provide for the payment of the volunteer and reject the prayer of the petition. If he had felt it his militia corps in Florida. duty to avoid a participation in the vote, as the Senator Mr. PRENTISS offered the following resolution; from South Carolina had done, he would bave retired which was agreed to: from the Senate altogether, and left it to those he rep. Resolved, That the Committee on Pensions be inresented to pass judgment upon his conduct. But if, structed to inquire into expediency of directing the by the absence of his vote, a measure hostile to the views | Secretary of War to allow and pay to the heirs of Rich
orih OBUCHANA expressed'.
hope that the motion
(March 15, 1836.
ardson Anderson, deceased, late a pensioner on the This bill, Mr. President, ought not to be looked upon revolutionary invalid pension roll, the amount of the as a party measure; nor should it, nor, I trust, will it, be said Richardson's invalid pension, from the 3d day of agitated or decided as a party question. It is a great March, 1826, to the 31st day of May, 1830, during national measure; one in which ihe whole Union is inwhich time the said pension was withheld or discon. terested deeply; one which the general good imperatinued, in consequence of the said Richardson's taking tively demands; and it is one which has been heretofore the benefit of the act for the relief of certain surviving considered and sustained as a national measure by men officers and soldiers of the army of the Revolution, of both political parties, even in times of high party expassed May 15, 1828.
citement. In turning to the yeas and nays, as recorded The bill for the continuation of the Cumberland road in the journals of the Senate in 1832, I find in the affirm. in Ohio, Indiana, and Mlinois, was read a third time and ative, on the final passage of this bill, Dudley, of New passed.
York, Dickerson, of New Jersey, (now a member of On motion of Mr. BUCHANAN, the Senate proceed the cabinet,) and Dallas and Wilkins, of Pennsylvania; ed to the consideration of executive business; and, after all devoted friends of the President, but who, in this inremaining for some time with closed doors,
stance at least, if party were at ali involved in the quesThe Senate adjourned.
tion, showed that they loved their country better than
their party. But the state of things has changed since TUESDAY, Manch 15.
this bill was then before the Senate. The reasons for LAND BILL.
its passage, all that then existed, still remain in fuil
vigor; all the leading objections to it have ceased to Mr. EWING, of Ohio, moved the Senate to take up exist; and other reasons, most imperative in tbeir nathe bill to authorize the distribution of the proceeds of ture, seem to demand of us its adoption. Those who the public lands, &c.
opposed it then may, with perfect consistency, support Mr. BUCHANAN expressed a hope that the Senate it now. Not only so; they may, and those who view it would proceed to the consideration of executive business. aright will, as I think, feel constrained, by a sense of
Mr. EWING called for the yeas and nays on the ques. what is due to the welfare and prosperity of our comtion; which were ordered; and, after a few words from mon country, to sustain il, and press it onward to a sucMr. BENTON, Mr. EWING, and Mr. BLACK, the cessful termination. The public debt is now paid; the question was taken, and decided as follows:
tariff is adjusted on terms which no one will think fit to YEAS— Messrs. Black, Calhoun, Clay, Clayton, Crit. disturb; and there has accumulated in the national treastenden, Davis, ving of Ohio, Goldsborough, Hen- ury a very large amount of money beyond what is redricks, Kent, Knight, Leigh, McKean, Mangum, Nau- quisite for the wants of the Government. This amount dain, Porter, Prentiss, Presion, Robbins, Southard, Swift, continues and must continue rapidly to accumulate. Tomlinson, Webster, White-24.
We have for it no safe depository. It is scattered about Nays-Messrs. Benton, Brown, Buchanan, Cuthbert, among the banks in the several States, who give no Ewing of Illinois, Grundy, Hill, Hubbard, King of Ala- pledge for its repayment, and pay no interest for its use. buma, King of Georgia, Linn, Morris, Nicholas, Niles, 'This surplus, now nominally in the treasury, but really Rives, Robinson, Ruggles, Shepley, Tallmadge, Tipton, scattered among these deposite banks, is large-very Walker, Wall, Wrighi-23.
large; according to the report of the Secretary of the So the Senate deiermined to take up the bill.
Treasury made to the Senate a short time since, it Mr. EWING, of Ohio, then rose and addressed the amounted on the 1st of February last to $28,239,744 61, Chair as follows:
exclusive of considerable sums also in deposite in these Mr. President: This bill, which has already several banks to the credit of disbursing officers, but which times passed this body, and which was once carried in had not been expended; the whole sum amounted to the other branch of the national Legislature, is so fa. $30,678,879 91. This sum cannot be touched or lesmiliar to all here that it is hardly necessary to present sened by any of the expenditures of the present year; an analysis of its provisions. Some amendments, in on the contrary, it must continue to increase. There is deed, have been proposed by the Committee on Public one item, and a large one, which will soon, I presume, Lands; but those amendmenis are not at all vital to the be added to it; I mean the stock which we held in the bill; they merely modify in some measure its provisions; late Bank of the United States. That bank has ceased they propose to strike out some matters which seem to exist as a national institution. Its stockholders, all incongruous, or out of place here; but there is no one except the United States, have been incorporated by of those amendments which the committee would not one of the States as a State bank. It is now right and be willing to yield, if the bill, in its original shape, be proper that our connexion with it should be dissolved, more acceptable to the Senate. The leading provisions for ine United States ought not to be a stockholder in which remain are thesc: 1st. That there be granted to any of the State institutions. This bank stock, amount. each of the new States, to be applied to the purposes of ing to $7,000,000, will, il present prices be maintained, internal improvenient, so much land as, with that al. sell for at least seven and a hall--more probably eight ready granted for the same purpose, will make to each millions; but if ve estimate the receipts from it at seven State at least 500,000 acres. 2d. That there be granted and a hall, it gives, added to the present sum in the 10 each of the said new States, Ohio, Indiana, Illinois, treasury, $38,178,879 91 of present means on hand, Missouri, Mississippi, Louisiana, and Alabama, ten per or which must be on hand in the course of the su inmer. cent. on the neti proceeds of the sales of the public And this surplus must continue to increase; for the reJands within its limits since the 31st day of December, ceipts of the current year will very much exceed all the 1832, 1o be applied to the purposes of internal improve. expenditures which can be made beneficially to the ments within the respective States; and, lastly and country under the appropriations of the present session. chiefly, that the whole residue of the nett proceeds The receipts from customs for the year 1836 may be of the sales of the public lands since that day safely estimated as equalling those of 1835. Indeed, shall be divided among all the States, according to their the receipts for January of this year have very much respective federal representative population, as ascer exceeded those for the corresponding month of the tained by the last census, to be applied by the Legisla- last. But that I may not place it too high, I set it down tures of the States to such ubjects as they shall designate at the same; that is, in round numbers, $19,000,000. and authorize.
The receipts from public lands will much exceed those
Jan. 12, 1836.)
The United States and France, &c.—Surplus Revenue, &c.
Mr. WEBSTER stated the character of the bill, of for the purpose of indicating a mode in which those diffiwhich the following is a copy:
culties might be removed. A BILL for the relief of the sufferers by the fire in the
“Resolved, also, (under the restriction above mentioned,)
in the event of any such overture having been made, city of New York.
That the President be requested to inform the Senate Be it enacted, &c., That the collector of the port what answer was given to it; and if the original or a of New York be, and he is hereby, authorized, as he copy of any such despatch were received, that he be may deem best calculated to secure the interests of further requested to communicate a copy of it to the the United States, to cause to be extended (with the Senate." assent of the securities thereon) to all persons who have Mr. LEIGH moved to amend the resolutions by adding suffered loss of property by the conflagration at that the following: place, on the sixteenth day of December last, by the Resolved, also, (under the restriction before mentioned,) burning of their buildings or merchandise, the time of That the President be requested to communicate to the payment of all bonds heretofore given by them for Senate a copy of the note of M. Serurier, mentioned in duties, to periods not exceeding three, four, and five his message of the 25th February, 1835, and not then years, in equal instalments, from and after the day of communicated, for reasons stated in the report of the payment specified in the bonds; or to allow the said Secretary of State to the President, of the same date. bonds to be cancelled, upon giving to said collector new The amendment was adopted, and the resolutions, as bonds, with one or more sureties, to the satisfaction of amended, were agreed to. the said collector, for the sums of the former bonds, re
SURPLUS REVENUE, BANK STOCK, AND NAspectively, payable in equal instalments, in three, four,
TIONAL DEFENCE. and five years from and after the day of payment speci. fied in the bonds to be taken and cancelled as aforesaid; The following resolution, submitted yesterday by Mr. and the said collector is hereby authorized and directed | Bentox, was taken up for consideration: to give up, or cancel, all such bonds, upon the receipt “Resolved, That the surplus revenue of the United of others described in this section; which last-mentioned States, and the dividends of stock receivable from the bonds shall be proceeded with, in all respects, like other Bank of the United States, ought to be set apart, and bonds which are taken by collectors for duties due to applied to the general defence and permanent security the United States, and shall have the same force and of the country. That the President be requested to validity: Provided, That those who are within the pro
cause the Senate to be informed-vision of this section, but who may have paid their bonds
“1. The probable amount that would be necessary subsequent to the late fire, shall also be entitled to the for fortifying the lake, maritime, and gulf frontier of benefit of this section, and that the said bonds shall be the United States, and such points of the land frontier renewed from the day when the same were paid, and as may require permanent fortifications. said payments refunded. And provided, also, That the “2. The probable amount that would be necessary benefits of this section shall not be extended to any per to construct an adequate number of armories and arseson whose loss shall not be proved, to the satisfaction of nals in the United States, and to supply the States with the collector, to have exceeded the sum of one thousand field artillery, especially brass ficld pieces, for their midollars.
litia, and with side arms and pistols for their cavalry. Sec. 2. And be it further enacted, that the collector
“3. The probable amount that would be necessary of the port of New York is hereby authorized and di to supply the United States with the ordnance, arms, rected to extend the payment, in the manner prescri- and munitions of war, which a proper regard to selfbed in the first section of this act, of all other bonds given defence would uire to be always on hand. for duties at the port of New York, prior to the late fire,
• 4. The probable amount that would be necessary and not provided for in the first section, as aforesaid,
to place the naval defences of the United States (inclufor six, nine, and twelve months from and after the day ding the increase of the navy, navy yards, dock yards, of payment specified in the bonds: Provided, however, and steam or floating batteries) upon the footing of That nothing contained in this act shall extend to bonds strength and respectability which is due to the security which had fallen due before the seventeenth day of De and to the welfare of the Union.” cember last.
The resolution having been read, Mr. CLAY made some objection to the bill in its pres.
Mr. BENTON rose and said that the objects contement shape, but wished it to lie for examination; which plated by it were of a general and permanent nature, was assented to; and, after a few words from Mr. Cal and required attention, without regard to existing cirHOUN, Mr. WRIGHT, and Mr. WEBSTER, was for
cumstances. To place itself in a state of defence was the present laid on the table.
the duty of all countries which desired to preserve their
independence or to live with honor. The United States THE UNITED STATES AND FRANCE, &c.
were not in a state of defence, and it was their duty to The resolutions offered yesterday by Mr. Clay, calling attend to that object. The present time was the proper on the Executive for information concerning our rela time. The public debt was paid, a large surplus revetions with France, baving been taken up, as follows: nue was accumulating, and the country was every way
“Resolved, that the President be requested to com prosperous. Projects were devised to distribute these municate to the Senate (if it be not in his opinion incom- surpluses among the States; but he was in favor of setpatible with the public interest) whether, since the ter- ling them apart, and dedicating them to the defence of mination of the last Congress, any overture, formal or the Union. Formerly, and by a law as old as the repub. informal, official or unofficial, has been made by the lic, these surpluses were all set apart, and constituted French Government to the Executive of the United a separate fund, called the sinking fund, and inviolably States, to accommodate the difficulties between the two applied to the sacred purpose of extinguishing the naGovernments respecting the execution of the convention tional debt. By this means the debt has been paid. He of the 4th day of July, 1831; and, particularly, whether was for reviving and continuing this policy, with a a despatch from the Duc de Broglie, the French Minis- change of object, from the debt to the defences of the ter of Foreign Affairs, to the French chargé de af Union, and would wish to see all the surplus revenue faires at Washington, was read, and the original or a take that direction, until the country was as secure from copy of it furnished by him to the Secretary of State, I receiving, as it is averse from offering, offence. It
Surplus Revenue, &c.
[Jan. 12, 1836.
would require all the surpluses, and many years of ex tude of our officers to honor her flag and gratify her ertion, to accomplish the object.
feeling Mr. B. repeated, his motion was for objects of a gen
“Brest, April 4, 1835. eral and permanent character, and he felt it to be his “I have the honor to inform you that the brig d'Assas duty to make it, without regard to impending events sailed from New York on the 11th of March last, at the or to extrinsic circumstances. But there were events same time with the American packet ship Albany, in and circumstances which should give emphasis to his which M. Serurier and his family are returning to France, motion, and stimulate its immediate adoption. A French and arrived in the roads of Brest on the 14th of this fleet of sixty vessels of war, to be followed by sixty month, after a passage of twenty-four days. I remained more, now in commission, approaches our coast; and in the United States until the 11th of March, as the approaches it for the avowed purpose of observing our chargé d'affaires of France, at whose disposition your conduct in relation to France. It is styled in the French excellency placed me, did not wish to despatch me back papers a squadron of observation; and we are sufficiently until the rising of Congress, which took place on the acquainted with the military vocabulary of France to 4th of that month. During my stay at New York, I know what that phrase means. In the days of the great found among the richest and best educated persons the Emperor, we were accustomed to see the armies which greatest affection and sympathy for France; this they demolished empires at a blow wear that pacific title up expressed to us by every possible attention and every to the moment that the blow was ready to be struck.
delicate kindness which their hospitable dispositions These grand armies assembled on the frontiers of em could suggest. Half an hour after my leaving the East pires, gave emphasis to negotiation, and crushed what river, an American schooner of war, knowing the time resisted. A squadron of observation, then, is a squad at which I was to depart, got under sail; she crossed ron of intimidation first, and of attack eventually; and my way about a league from the place of anchorage, nothing could be more palpable than that such was the and when about two cables' length from us, she hoisted character of the squadron in question. It leaves the
the French flag on her mizzen mast, and fired seven guns, French coast cotemporaneously with the departure of which were immediately returned; she kept the tri-color our diplomatic agent, and the assembling of our Congress; flag flying as long as we were in sight. i then saw the it arrives upon our coast at the very moment that we American frigate Constitution, towed by two steamboals, shall have to vote upon French affairs; and it takes a on her way to New York; as soon as I crossed her, I saposition upon our Southern border-that border, above luted her commodore with thirteen guns, which he imall others, on which we are, at this time, peculiarly sen
mediately returned, gun for gun.”. sitive to hostile approach.
Mr. B., resuming, said this was the report made to the What have we done, continued Mr. B., to draw this French Government by a French officer, after the rise squadron upon us? We have done no wrong to France; of the last session of Congress, and after the departure we are making no preparations against her; and not of M. Serurier; and how was it received in the Chameven ordinary preparations for general and permanent ber of Deputies, to which it was communicated? lle security. We have treaties, and are executing them,
(Mr. B.) would show one example of the manner in even the treaty that she does not execute! We have which it was received, and for that purpose would read been executing that treaty for five years, and may say
a paragraph from the speech of the deputy M. de that we have paid France as much under it as we have Rance. in vain demanded from her, as the first instalment of “Gentlemen, we should put on one side of the trithe indemnity; not, in fact, by taking money out of our
bune the twenty-five millions, on the other the sword of treasury and delivering to her, but, what is better for
France. When the Americans see this good long sword, her, namely, leaving her own money in her own hands, this very long sword, gentlemen, (for it struck down in the shape of diminished duties upon her wines, as every thing from Lisbon to Moscow,) they will perhaps provided for in this same treaty, which we execute, and recollect what it did for the independence of their counwhich she does not. In this way France has gained one try; they will, perhaps, too, reflect upon what it could or two millions of dollars from us, besides the encour do to support and avenge the honor and dignity of agement to her wine trade. On the article of silks she France, when outraged by an ungrateful people. [Cries is also gaining money from us in the same way, not by of, well said!] Believe me, gentlemen, they would treaty, but by law. Our discriminating duties in favor sooner touch your money than dare to touch your sword; of silks from this side the Cape of Good Hope, operate and for your twenty-five millions they will bring you almost entirely in her favor. Our great supplies of silks back the satisfactory receipt, which it is your duty to are from France, England, and China. In ten years,
exact. (Great approbation from the extremities.”] and under the operation of this discriminating duty, Another deputy, M. Fleury de Chabaulon, allowed our imports of French silks have risen from two mil bimself to discourse thus: Jions of dollars per annum to six millions and a balf; “ The insult of President Jackson comes from himfrom England, they have risen from a quarter of a mil. self only. This is more evident, from the refusal of the Jion to three quarters; from China, they have sunk from American Congress to concur with him in it. The three millions and a quarter to one million, and a quar- French Chamber, by interfering, would render the after. This discriminating duty has left between one and fair more serious, and make its arrangement more diffitwo millions of dollars in the pockets of Frenchmen, cult, and even dangerous. Let us put the case to ourbesides the encouragement to the silk manufacture and selves. Suppose the United States had taken part with trade. Why, then, has she sent this squadron, to General Jackson, we should have had to demand satisobserve us first, and to strike us eventually? She knows faction not from him, but from the United States; and our pacific disposition towards her, not only from our instead of now talking about negotiation, we should own words and actions, but from the oflicial report of have had to make appropriations tor a war, and to inher own officers; from the very officer sent out last trust to our heroes of Navarino and Algiers the task of spring, in a brig, to carry back the recalled minister. teaching the Americans that France knows the way to Here is his report, made to the Minister of Marine, and Washington as well as England." communicated to the Chamber of Deputies in the month This was the language of the deputies, and it was of April last. Listen to it, and see how fully it estab. thus received with applauses, and that six weeks after Jishes, not only our pacific dispositions towards France, the rise of our Congress, which bad shown itself pacific, but the affection of our citizens for her, and the solici and two weeks after the report of the captain of the brig
Jan. 12, 1836.]
Surplus Revenue, &c.
d'Assas, attesting the friendship of our feelings, and the All these specific appropriations, continued Mr. B., readiness of our officers to salute, with honor, the fag were lost in the bill which was sunk by the opposition of France. And this language was not only received of the Senate to the three millions, which were attached with applause in the Chamber, but it has been acted to it by the House of Representatives. He (Mr. B.) upon by the French Government. Two royal ordinances was not a member of the conference committee which have appeared in the Moniteur, under date of the 2d of had the disagreement of the two Houses committed to December last; and, under these ordinances, Admiral | its charge, and could go into no detail as to what hapMackau is to take command of the " squadron of ob- pened in that conference; he took bis stand upon the servation,” which was immediately to proceed to the palpable ground that the opposition which the Senate West Indies; and the Constitutionnel, which is the demi made to the three million appropriation, the speeches official paper of the Government, and nearly equal in which denounced it, and the prolonged invectives authority to the Moniteur, after stating that this meas against the President, which inflamed the passions and ure was warranted by the actual state of the diffic consumed the precious time at the last moment of the culties with the United States, goes on to “ applaud the session, were the true causes of the loss of that bill; Government for thus preparing, long beforehand, and and so leaves the responsibility for the loss on the concentrating the power in the hands of one who is shoulders of the Senate. firm, and capable of using it to advantage when neces. of this three million appropriation, Mr. B. said, the sary;” Thus, "the language of the deputies and the country had heard much; but there was another mateconduct of the Government correspond; and the fleet rial appropriation lost in the Senate, of which nothing must now be approaching our coast, which bears that had been said: he alluded to the sum of $500,000, which long sword, at the sight of which our terrified hearts originated in the Senate's Committee on Military Affairs, and faltering tongues must deliver the satisfactory an and which, as the chairman of that committee, and unswer which French chivalry exacts.
der its direction, he had recommended in a report, and Mr. B. said he had never spoken unkindly of the proposed as an amendment to the same fortification bill, French nation, neither in his place here as a Senator, nor which was afterwards sunk under the three millions. in his private capacity elsewhere. Born since the Amer. The report was made on the 18th of February, and he ican Revolution, bred up in habitual affection for the would read it. French name, coming upon the stage of life when the “ The Senate's Committee on Military Affairs, which glories of the republic and of the empire were filling has had the subject under consideration, report; the world and dazzling the imagination, politically con “ That it is expedient to increase the appropriations nected with the party which, a few years ago, was called heretofore made for the national defence; and that, in French, bis bosom had glowed with admiration for that addition to the sums now contained in that bill for fortifipeople, and youthful affection had ripened into manly cations, and in addition to the two sums of $100,000, friendship. He would not now permit himself to speak each heretofore recommended by this committee to be unkindly, much less to use epithets; but he could not inserted in the said bill for fortifications, and the arma. avoid fixing his attention upon the reason assigned in the ment thereof, the further sum of five hundred thousand Constitutionnel for the present advance of the French dollars be recommended to be inserted therein, for the squadron upon us. That reason is this: “ America will repair, completion, and construction, of fortifications, have no force capable of being opposed to it.” This is and to provide the necessary armament therefor. And the reason.
Our nakedness, our destitution, has drawn the committee have directed their chairman to move an upon us the honor of this visit; and we are now to amendment accordingly, at the proper time, to the fortispeak, and vote, and so to demean ourselves, as men fication appropriation bill." standing in the presence of a force which they cannot re The motion was made in the Senate to insert this ap. sist, and which had taught the lesson of submission to propriation of $500,000. The sense of the Senate was the Turk and the Arab! And here I change the theme; so clearly against it, that he (Mr. B.) did not press it, I turn from French intimidation to American legislation; nor call for a division. It was rejected when offered; and I ask how it comes that we have no force to oppose and thus the Senate, some days before they objected to to this squadron which comes here to take a position the three millions as being too large and general, bad upon our borders, and to show us that it knows the way rejected a much smaller appropriation, and one that was to Washington as well as the English? This is my fu- specific. ture theme; and I have to present the American Senate The third act of the Senate which Mr. B. brought as the responsible party for leaving our country in this forward to establish the responsibility of the Senate for wretched condition. First, there is the three million the present condition of the country, and the consequent appropriation which was lost by the opposition of the visit of the French fleet, was the fact of laying on the Senate, and which carried down with it the whole forti- table, and refusing even to consider, a resolution which fication bill, to which it was attached. That bill, be- he brought forward about the middle of February, call. sides the three millions, contained thirteen specific appro- ing on the President for plans and estimates for the genpriations for works of defence, part originating in the eral and permanent defence of the country by sea and House of Representatives, and part in the Senate, and land. It was a call for plans and estimates and probable the particulars of which he would read:
amounts of surplus revenue, with the sole view to the For the fort on George's island,
$15,000 defence of the country; yet it was laid upon the table For the repairs of Fort Independence, 8,000 by the vote of the majority, and upon the motion of an For Fort Adams,
100,000 opposition Senator; and, of all the acts of the Senate, it For the fort at Throg's neck,
30,000 seemed to him to be the one wbich went farthest in Repairing Fort Columbus,
13,000 showing the indisposition of this body to provide for the Rebuilding Fort Delaware,
150,000 defence of the country. It was not merely a refusal to For fortifications in Charleston harbor, 20,000 apply money, but a refusal to have information by which Fort at Cockspur island,
82,000 money could be applied, and that while making it a Fort at Pensacola,
26,000 standing topic of reproach that the President had not Fort on Foster's bank,
65,000 furnished plans and estimates. Repairs of Fort Miffin,
75,000 The fourth circumstance on which Mr. B. relied to Armament of fortifications,
- 100,000 show that the Senate was responsible for the present Contingencies,
- 10,000 I naked and defenceless condition of the country, and for