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power over the administration of the bank assigned to the By the 16th section, and by the 15th rule of the 11th President, except in the last section, where it is declared, section, the Secretary of the Treasury has a constant that “whenever any committee of Congress shall find supervision of its affairs, and the power of placing the and report, or the President of the United States shall public revenue elsewhere, subject to an immediate and have reason to believe, that the charter has been violaled, it direct responsibility to Congress. may be lawful for Congress to direct, or the President to By the 22d section, Congress itself has the power of order, a scire fucias to be sued out of the circuit court for investigation, to ascertain if there be sufficient ground to the district of Pennsylvania, calling upon the corporation justify an appeal to the courts of the United States, to try to show cause wherefore the charter hereby granted shall if it has violated its charter. not be declared forfeited.” The whole function then Finally, by the same section, whenever the President delegated to the President is a power, concurrently wiih of ihe United States shall have "reason to believe that a committee of Congress, to issue a scire facias, by which the charter has been violated," he “may order a scire the court is to try whelber his belief that the bank has facias to be sued out of the circuit court of the district violated its charter is well founded. Yet, this slender of Pennsylvania, calling on the said corporation to show authority is made the pretext for usurping the whole cause wberefore the charter hereby granted shall not be power of the Secretary, and for doing that which the declared forfeited.” Secretary alone was authorized to do, and which he, the This is the uliole power of the President in relation to President, was not merely not authorized to do, but sub the bank. He may, if he thinks that the charter has been stantially probibited from doing. For it is manifest that violated, bring the bank before the court for trial. Now this removal of the deposites is not made by the order of in this manifesto, he distinctly declares that the bank has the Secretary of the Treasury. It is a perversion of lan- acted " in direct violation of one of the most important guage so to describe it. On the contrary, the reverse is provisions of the charter." If so, it was his duty io issue openly avowed. The Secretary of the Treasury refused the scire facias—to appeal to the courts and juries. That to remove them, believing, as his published letter de was the only legitimate action which belonged to him. clares, that the removal was " unnecessary, unwise, But a judicial investigation of his charges is precisely vindiclive, arbitrary, and unjust.” He was then dismissed what lie dreaded. The more summary and illegal in. because he would not remove them, and ano:ber was vasion of the powers of otbers, seems to have more appointed because he would remove them. Now this is attraction than the legitimate exercise of his own. And, a palpable violation of the charter. The bank and C01. making himself accuser and judge--disregarding the vote gress agree upon certain terms, which no one can change of Congress, the authority of the courts and juries, and but a particular officer; who, although necessarily nomi. the exclusive power of the Secretary of the Treasury, he naled to the Senate by the Pr. siden', was designated by substitutes at once his own arbitrary will. Certainly, since the bank and by Congress as the umpire between them. the foundation of this Government, nothing has ever been Both Congress and the bank have a right to the free, and done which more deeply wounds the spirit of our free honest, and impartial judgment of that officer, whoever institutions. It, in fact, resolves i'self into this that he may be-the bank, because the removal may injure its whenever the laws prescribe certain duties to an officer, interests--the Congress, because the removal may greatly if that officer, acting under the sanctions of his official incommode and distress their constituents. In ibis case, oath and his private character, refuses to violate that law, they are deprived of it by the unlawful interference of the President of the United Sta!es may dismiss him and the President, who "assumes the responsibility," which, appoint another; and if he too should prove to be a "re. being interpreted, means, usurps the power of the Secre fractory subordinate," to continue his removals until he at tary. To make this usurpation more evident, his own lust discovers in the descending scale of degradation some language contradicts the very power which he asserts: irresponsible individual Git to be the tool of his designs,
" The power of the Secretary, he says, over the de- Unhappily, there are never wanting men who will think posites, is unqualified."
as their superiors wish them to think-men who regard "The President cannot refrain from pressing upon the more the compensation than the duties of their officeSecretary of the Treusury his view of the considerations men to whom daily bread is sufficient consolation for daily w bich impel to immediate action."
shame. And yet these phrases have scarcely escaped him, when The present state of this question is a fearful illustration he ends by declaring ibat he "begs' his cabinet to con. of the danger of it. At this moment the whole revenue sider the proposed measure as his own.
." "Its respon: ibility of this country is at the disposal—the absolute, uncon. is assumed," &c.
Trolled cisposal of the President of the United States. Finally, it was announced in the official gazette, that the laws declare that the public funds shall be placed in “We know the fact, that if Mr. Van Buren and every the Bank of the United States, unless the Secretary of personal friend of the President, had united in reconi- the Treasury forbids it. The Secretary of the Treasury mending that the deposites should not be removed, the will not forbid it. The President dismisses him, and President would hure taken measures to remove them not appoints somebody wlio will. So the laws declare that withstanding."
no money shall be drawn from the Treasury, except on The bank, then, has a right to complain:
warrants for appropriations made by law. If the Treas. 1.31. That, after paying amply for the use of the de. urer refuses to draw his warrant for any disbursement, posites, they have been suddenly drawn from it.
the President may dismiss him and appoint some more 2d. That this has been done without the slightest sus flexible agent who will not hesitate to gratily bis patron. picion of their insecurity, the only ground on which the The text is in the official gazette, announcing the fate of removal could be justifiable--and,
the dismissed Secretary to all who follow him.
" The 3d. That it has been done, not by the officer to whose agent cannot conscientiously perform the service and rejudgment it had agreed to submit, but by another oflicer fuses to co-operate, and desires to remain to thwart the who had not the slightest right to interfere.
President's measures. To put an end to this difficuliy But the wrong done to the pecuniary interests of the between the head and the hands of the Executive debank, sinks into entire insignificance, when compared partment, the constitution arms the Chief Magistrate with with the deeper injury inflicted on the country by this authority to remove the refractory subordinate.” The usurpation of all the powers of the Government. theory ihus avowed, and the recent practice under it,
By She act of Congress chartering the bank, certain convert the whole free institutions of this country into the specified powers in regard to it are delegated to particular mere absolute will of a single individual. They breaks officcrs.
down all the restraints which the framers of the Govern- promised to give, and had hitherto always given of similar ment hoped they bad imposed on arbirrary power, and demands on the bank. place the whole revenue of the United States in the hands The committee willingly leave to the Congress of the of the President.
United States the assertion of their own constitutional The power, too, is asserted in a tone fitter for the East power, and the vindication of the principles of our Gov. than for any country claiming to be governed by laws. ernment, against the most violent assault they bare ever The Presiden: declares that, “in his opinion, the near yet encountered; and will now confine themselves to the approach of the termination of the charter, and the public more limited purpose of showing that the reasons assignconsiderations heretofore mentioned, are of themselves ed for this measure are as unfounded as the object itself amply sufficient to justify the removal of the deposites, is illegal. without reference to the conduct of thic bank, or their The main purpose, in fact, of this manifesto, appears to safety in its keeping."
be to prove that the bank was unfriendly to his own elecThe only public considerations heretofore mentioned,' tion, and he endeavors to trace this opposition to him and are his own re-election, and his belief that the charter bis measures. would not be renewed. So that the President here avows 1st. In the application 10 Congress for the renewal of that, although the last Congress passed a bill re-chartering the charter. this very bank-although the same Congress, a few 20. In the extension of the loans of the bank in 1831 montlis ago, at his own invitation, declared that the public and 1832. deposites miglit be safely continued in this bank-al. 31. In the claim for damages on the French bill. though a new Congress, many of whose members are 41h. In the circulation of documents vindicating the chosen by the people since his own election, is about to bank from the imputa'ions which had been cast upon it. meet in ninety days, and will continue in existence for All these assertions il is proposed briefly to disprove. two years---alihough al the end of those two years a new 1st. He first complains that the bank applied to ConCongress, fresh from the people, will meet before the gress for a decision in regard to its charter. lle says charler expires--yet, notwithstanding all ibis, he, the " that there are strong reasons for believing that the moPresident, declares on his own responsibility that the tive of the bank for asking for a recharter at that s. ssion deposites shall be removed; no ma ter whether the con. was to make it a leading question in ihe election of & duct of the bank hias been good or bad, and no matter President of the United States the ensuing November, whether the deposites are safe or unsafe; and, accordingly, and all steps were deemed necessary to procure from the hi: dismisses the officer who reluses to remove them, and people a reversal of the President's decision:" and again, a} poinis another who will remove them.
"the object avowed by many of the advocates of the At this moment the process of evading the law is in full bark was to put the President to the test;" and moreover, practice.
“it was to compeltbe President to take his stand that the By the constitution of the United States, (sec. 9,) “no question was brought forward at that particular time." money shall be drawn from the Treasury but in conse Now the fact is, that, so far from prematurely fastening quence of an appropriation made by law.”
a discussion on the part of tbe bank, it was in fact he himBy the act of September 1, 171,9, establishing the self who brought this very question before Congress, and Treasury Department, the Secretary of the Treasury is rendered its discussion inevitable. Thus, in his message authorized to "grant all warrants for moneys to be issued of December 8, 1829, be said-from the Treasury in pursuance of appropriations made by "The charter of ilic Bank of the United States es. law;" and the same act further declares, “that it shall be pires in 1836, and its s'ockholders will most probably the duty of the Treasurer to receive and keep the moneys apply for a renewal of their privileges. In order to avoid of the United States, and to disburse the same, upon tie evils resulting from precipitancy in a measure invuls. warranis drawn by the Secretary of the Treasy, coun ing such important principles, and such deep pecuniary tersigned by the Comptruller, recorded by the Rigister, interests, I feel tbat I cannot in justice lo the parlics inlcrand not otherwise."
ested, too soon present it to the deliberate considera'ion of But there has been a usage of transferring funds from the Legislature and the people.” one branch of the Bank of the United States to another, Io his message of December 11, 1830, he says: or one State bank to another, when the public service “ The importance of the priuciples involved in the in. required disbursements at remote places. This transfer quiry whether it be proper io recharter the Bank of the draft, intended to require an actual transfer, has been United States, requires that I should again call the atten: converted into a mere check-a warrant in fact, though tion of Congress to the subject.” not in form--and has been applied to the purpose of taking In his message of Decrmber 6, he says: the funds out of the place to which they are assigned by “Entertaining the opinions heretofore expressed in rclaw, and transferring them to the opposite side of the lation to the Bank of the United States, as at present or
As it was never presumed that such a power ganized, I felt it my duty, in my former messages, frankly would be tbus abuse), the transfer draft has fewer checks to disclose them, in order that ihe attention of the Legisthan the warrant for disbursement, the signature of the lature and the people should be seasonably directed to Comptroller, who is the law officer of the Treasury, not that important subject, and that it might be considered being usual; and accordingly, by a strange anomaly, al- and finally disposed of in a manner best calculated to prothough the Treasurer's warrant to pay one hundred dol-mote the ends of the constitution, and subserve the pubLars 1o an honest creditor of the Government must go lic interests. Having thus conscientiously discharged a through a great variety of forms, the transfer draft for a constitutional duty, 1 Jeem it proper, on this occasion, million has lewer formalities. By means of these transfer without a more particular reference to the views of the drafts, as will be seen by the annexed correspondence, subject then expressed, to leave it al presenl lo the intes. large sums of money have been withdrawn from the Bank tigation of an enlightened people and their representalices." of the United States, and placed in State Banks in the same It was under these distinct and repea'ed invitations by city, without ihe slightest reference to the public disburse. the President himself, that the bank felt itself obliged ments-and no less than two millions three hundred not to decline his call upon Congress, and accordingly thousand dollars of the publc revenue have been placed the subject was brought before that body. at the discretion of the officers of the State banks by Both houses of Congress passed the bill renewing the transfer drafis privately issued, and without the notice to charter. This result was unexpected to him, and although the Bank of the United Stales, which the Treasury had he had declared in the message, just quoled, that lie
meant to leave it at present to the investigation of an Yet its actual loans--its actual dis ounts, enlightened people and their represen/alives”-yet, the mo were increased only
5,124,893 71 ment the enlightened people and their representatives The domestic bills of exchange purchased for the differed from him in opinion, he treated then just as he transferring of the funds of the Government, or of indihas recently done the conscience of the Secretary of the viduals, make a separate and independent business, deTreasury-he refused his signature to the bill on the 14th pendent on the demand for the interior commerce of the of July, 1832, declaring that had the Executive been country. But taking the increase of those bills into concalled upon to furnish the project of such an institution, sideration, it will be seen that the increase of loans the duty would have been cheerfully performed." As, is
$5,124,893 71 however, no such call was made, he concluded that “18 And the increase of bills of exchange 12,596,318 62 the charter had yel four years to run, and us a renewal now was not necessary to the successful prosecution of its busi. Making a total increase of
$17,721,212 33 ness, it was to liave been expected," &c.
Here, then, the President begins in 1829, when the instead of twenty-eight millions, as asserted by the signer bank had nearly seven years to run, by telling Congress of the paper. That is to say, in the year 1831, there that to avoid precipitancy he could not too soon present being a most active foreign and interior trade, requiring the subject of the re-charter to their consideration. The unusual facilities for its operations, the bank having renext year, when the bank bad nearly six years to run, heceived from the Government the reimbursement its repeated to Congress that the importance of the subject loan lo Government, amounting to more than eight milof the re-charter required that he should again call the lions; and having called in its funds in Europe, and emattention of Congress it. The next year, when the ployed its credit there to the amount of four millions, bank bad five years lo run, be reiterated to Congress that possessing thus additional means of loaning to the amount he thought the attention of Congress should be seasonably of nearly thirteen millions, actually increased its loans to directed to this important subject; and then, when Con. the amount of seventeen millions, making in fact a mere gress at his request proceeded to consider it, and renewed increase of its investments not equal to five millions, of the charter, he sent it back with a declaralion, that as the which increase the new Branch Bank of Natchez, estab. charter bad yet four years to run, there was no necessity lished within that period, alone contributed nearly three for being in baste about it.
millions. in the face of all these testimonials of his There are several circumstances which make tbis misurging Congress, year after year, to decide the question, statement peculiarly improper. He reproaches the bank as they decided against him, he asserts that the bank with this increase, although “the bank was aware of the must have brought it before Congress to defeat his election. intention of the Government to use the public deposite
His second proof is scarcely less extraordinary. lle as fast as it accrued, in the payment of ibe public debt." says that in order to carry the election against him “al. Now the fact is, that this public deposite was used, as we though the charter was approaching its iermination, and have just seen, in paying off the public lebt owned by the the bank was aware that it was the intention of the Gov- bank itself—so that instead of increasing its loans in such ernment to use the public deposite as fast as it accrued in a way as to interfere with the payment of the public debt the payment of the public debt, yet did it extend its to others, this very public debt was actually paid to the loans from Jan. 1831, to May 1832, from $43,402,304 24 bank itself, and furnished the very means of increasing to $70,428,070 72, being an increase of $28,625,766 48 the loans. in sixteen months. It is confidently believed that the What makes it still worse is, that this very public debt leading object of this inmense estension of its loans was was in fact paid lo the bank on the solicitation of the Treasto bring as large a portion of the people as possible under ury itself, before the bank was bound to receive il. i's power and influence.”
the 29th day of Sep'ember, 1831, the Secretary wrote to The errors here are as follows:
The President of the bank 1st. That the fact in regard to the increase of the loans " The offer made by you this day, on behalf of the is misstated; and that the niolives of them are wholly Bank of the United Slates, for the immediate reimburse. perverted.
mest at par of the following stocks received by that inThe truth is, that the loans at the periods mentioned slitution, is accepled, viz: stood thus:
91,188 92 of 45 per cents. of 26th May, 1824. January, 1831. May, 1832.
3,260,475 99 of 43 per cents, of 24th May, 1824. Loans to individuals $33,575,403 43 $17,375,078 20 Loan to Government 8,674,681 06
$3,351,664 91 Domestic bills 10,456,653 90. 23,052,972 52
“The Department fully appreciates the disposition which $52,706,738 39 $70,428,050 72 the Board of Directors have manifested by this arrangement,
52,706,738 39 to co-operate in the accomplishment of its desire for the dis
charge of the public debt as early as the means of the Treas: $17,721,312 33 ury will permit."
It has been thus seen, first, that the actual amount of Baring, Br's. & Co. Cr. 2,387,331 19 Dr. 1,878,122 29 increased investment was less by ten millions than is here
From this it is manifest íhat, between those two peri- asserted: second, that the public debt which the bank is ods the bank had received from Government the reim-charged with not preparing to pay, was actually paid to bursement of
$8,674,681 06 the bank itself, and not merely paid to the bank, but paid It bad drawn for its foreign
before it was due, in order to accommodate the Governfunds $2,387,331 19
ment. In regard to this increase, too, ihe points of comAnd drawn on its foreign
parison are wholly fallacious. From the nature of the correspondence for an ad
business of the country, the loans are necessarily larger ditional sum of 1,878,122 29
in May than January, because the Southern crop, with all Making a total of
4,265,453 48 its business, enlarges the spring operations of the bank;
and no more just result can be bad by comparing May Thus furnishing additional means of dis
and January, ihan by comparing the thermometer of the counting to the amount of
$12,940,134 54 iwo sessons, The true comparisons must be between
January and January, or between May and May. Now any be necessary) as may secure the rights of the the fact is, that the increase of the successive years is States." comparatively small. The loans at these successive peri Such a belief, moreover, is opposed by his own declar. ods were as follows:
alion in the Teto Message, that " a new Congress, elected in the midst of such discussion, and furnishing an equal
representation of the people according to the last census, To
Total. will bear to the Capitol the verdict of public opinion, and, Individuals. Government.
I doubt not, bring this question to a satisfactory resalt.
Now, that Congress to which he referred the decision
of the question, had not yet assembled. In some parts May, 1827, 33,118,707 46 17,764,359 05 50,883,066 51 of the country the members had not been even elected
1828, 37,353,717 92 17.474,111 43 54,827,829 35 at the time of signing this manifesto; and yet he now as1829, 42,894,587 90 15,007,472 13 57,902,060 03 serts that he "considers it as conclusively settled that 1830, 43,206,694 12 10,892,530 90 54,099,225 02 the charter of the Bank of ine United States will not be 1931, 153,582 067 75 5,674,681 06 59,256,748 81 renewed, and he has no reasonable ground to believe 1832. 70,428,070 72
70,428,070 72 that any substitute will be es'ablished. Being bound to 1833, 64,519,900 73
64,519,900 73 regulate bis course by the laws as they exist, and not to Nov., 1833, 57,210,604 38
57 210,604 38 anticipate the interference of the Legislative power for the
purpose of framing new systems, it is proper for him sea.
conably to consider the means by which the services renFrom which it appears that this enlargement was dered by the Bank of the United States are to be pergradual; that it occurred when the wants of the country formed after its charter shall expire.' This seems to in. required the aid of this expansive power, so valuable in volve an inconsistency. There was a Congress about to the institution, and that the increase has subsided when meet in ninety days, to which very Congress he had reno longer required.
serred the question of the bank. There was a new Con. Supposing all this, however, to have been exactly as it gress to meet in December, 1835, before the expiration has been stated, that is, supposing this increase of loan of the charler. Yet does he now declare that, since the to have been twenty-eight millions, what does it prove people elected him, and he was opposed to the bank, he Why, that the bank enlarged its business to meet the revokes all he said about the Congress of 1833, disregards commercial wants of the country, and when those wants the Congress of 1835, and chooses to consider it settled were supplied, the business of the bank of course sub- without any "interference of the Legislative power." sided. But the President can ascribe this increase to no The next head of complaint is the postponement of a other cause than his own elec on. Accordingly, he says portion of the three per cents., by the Government, in that the bank, in January, 1831, began to prepare for his April, 1832; and of ano:her portion by the bank in De. election, which was to take place nearly two years after-cember, 1832. Now, it is very remarkable that both wards, by lending twenty-eight millions. It is somewhat these subjects were fully examined; the first by the Comhostile to this theory, that this whole increase bad reach- mittee of Investigation of 1832, and the second by the ed its height in May, 1832. Now, in December, 1831, Committee of Ways and Means of 1833; and both reports the Secretary of the Treasury, with the full approbation are in decided contradiction to the assertions of the Presiof the President, had spoken in the most favorable terms dent. For instance, be complains of the first postpone. of the bank, and he did not sign bis veto message against ment, which he imputes to the bank; whereas the Com. it until July, 1832, up to which period it was doubiful mittee of Inves: igation themselves declare "they are whether he would veto it, and of course it was unknown fully of opinion that the bank neither sought for nor rewhether the bank would have the least reason to be op- quested a postponement of the payment by the Govera. posed to his election; and these whole twenty.eight mil. menit." He complains of the second pos! poncment, yet lions might have been uselessly lavished; so :hat the bank the Committee of Ways and Means report that the nomi. increased its loans while it had no interest in his election, nal postponement had, in fact, closed the payments sooner and did not increase them when he supposes it had. than if no postponement had been made; and that "th's Truly, this mode of "bringing as large a portion of the question seems no longer to present any important or people under its power and influence," seems singularly practical object of inquiry, or to call for or admit of any ill-timed.
action of Congress upon it." 3d. In recurrence to his own election, he next pro. This would seem to be perfectly satisfactory; yet, lest ceeds to declare, that " whatever may be the opinion of the revival of these charges may mislead the unsuspectothers, the President considers his re-election as a decising, it may be well to refute them again, as they have ion of the people against the bank.” Now, it is difficult been often refuted before, and first, of the postponement for any one to believe this, since it is notorious that many in October. He says of it: of the most decided friends of the bank were his z alous “ Conscious that at the end of that quarter the bank supporters. Thus, Pennsylvania was the most efficient would not be able to pay over the deposites, and that furof them all; yet that same Pennsylvania, with extraordi- ther indulgence was not to be expected of the Governnary unanimity, in February, 1831, passed the following men', an agent was despatched to England secretly to resolution:
negotiate with the holders of the public debt in Europe, " That ihe constitution of the United States authori. and induce them, by the offer of an equal or higher inzes, and near balf a century's experience sanctions a terest than that paid by the Government, to hold back Bank of the United States as necessary and proper to their claims for one year, during which, the bank expect regulate the value of money, and prevent paper cur- ed thus to retain the use of $5,000,000 of public money, rency of unequal and depreciated value.”
which the Government should set apart for the payment And again, with equal unanimity, in February, 1832, of that debt. The agent made an arrangement on terms, the following:
in part, which were in direct violation of the charter of “That the Senators from this Slate in the Congress of the bank; and when some incidents, connected with this the United States, be instructed, and the Representatives secret nego:iation, accidentally came to the knowledge of requested to use their exertions to obtain a renewal of the public and the Government, then, and not before, 50 ibe charter of the Bank of the United States during the much of it as was palpably in violation of the charter wss present session of Congreso, with such alterations (if disavowed!"
If there be any one matter in regard to which the bank Its specie at these places alone was
3,200,000 is more beneficial than any other matter, it is precisely Its funds in Europe were
2,982,000 this agency in paying off the public debt; and if there be any cases in the course of that agency more useful Making of cash in hand, or its equivalents . $8,462,000 than any other cases, they are precisely these two cases with an open credit in Europe, on which to which are here made the subjects of reproach.
2,500,000 Tbe whole collection of the revenue is based on the Besides mot less than twenty millions of debts, to be used system that funds are never accumulated in the Treasury for this purpose; while the whole public debt to be paid for a long period, but are principally lent out to the com on the 1st of October, was $8,634,988 37. munity, and only called for as they are needed for the In this state the bank, had it considered only its own public service. Wherever, therefore, large payments are interest, would have been perfectly passive, since it was made by the Government, as it is necessary to withdraw perfectly at ease. But it bad other and higher interests from the use of the community considerable sums, this to consult. From the communication with the Treasury, process requires some delicacy in recalling from distant in July, it was probable that the funds of the Government parts of the United States as much as may answer the im- might be insufficient to pay the debt advertised to be inediate exigency, yet not enough to press disadvanta- paid, and that even if these funds were adequale, the geously on the community. This is the especial function operation would exhaust all the means of the Government, of the bank. How well it has succeeded, may be infer- and require that the community should repay the whole red from the testimonial of the successive Secretaries of amount of the public funds distributed among them. It the Treasury. Thus, Mr. Rush, in his Treasury report was further manifest that the ability of the Government to of the 13th of December, 1828, says:
meet its engagemerits depended entirely on the punctual "In this manner heavy payments of the debt are, in payment of the revenue in the commercial cities, from Ju. effect, made gradual, instead of the whole mass being ly to January, which was estimated at about $12,000,000. thrown at once upon the money market, which might That resource was threatened with the greatest danger produce injurious' shocks. So prudently in this and by the appearance of the cholera, which had already other respects does the bank aid the operations of paying begun its ravages in New York and Philadelphia, with off the debt, that the community bardly has a conscious every indication of pervading the whole country. Had ness that it is going on.
it continued as it began, and all the appearances in July And Mr. Ingham, in like manner, on the 11th of July, warranted the belief of its continuance, there can be no
doubt it would have prostrated all commercial credit, and "I take the occasion to express the great satisfaction seriously endangered the public revenue, as in New York of the Treasury Department at the manner in which the and Philadelphia alone the demand, on account of the President and Directors of the parent bank have discharg- foreign three per cents., was about five millions. ed their trust in all their immediate relations to the Gov. The bank, therefore, made an arrangement with the fo. ernment, so far as their transactions have come under my reign owners of this stock, to the amount of $4, 175,373 92, notice, and especially in the facilities afforded in trans. to leave their money in the country for another year, the ferring the funds of The Government, and in the prepara. bank assuming to pay the interest instead of the Govern. tion for the heavy payment of the public debt, on the 1st ment. Having settled this, the bank resumed its usual instant, which has been effected by means of the prudent facilities of business to the community. Of the whole arrangements of your board, at a time of severe depres. four millions postponed, the interest on them has ceased, sion on all the productive employments of the country, and at this moment the only certificates not yet actually without causing any sensible additions to the pressure, or returned are those in the name of two persons, amounting even visible effect upon the ordinary operations of the to $42,375 94; and it is remarkable that, while of the Stale banks."
whole amount of $4,175,373 92 purchased and postpon. Finally, the President himself, in his message to Con-ed, there remain unpaid only two owners, holding gress of December, 1829, says:
$42,375 94; the amount of the unpostponed threes still “It was apprehended that the withdrawal of so large a outstanding is five or ten times as much. So that in fact, sum from the banks in which it was deposited, at a time as was anticipated in the report of the Committee of of unusual pressure on the money market, might cause Ways and Means, the postponement has actually hastened much injury to the interests dependent on bank accom- the payment. modations. But this evil was wholly averted by an early All these things were fully explained by the Commit. anticipation of it at the Treasury, aided by the judicious tee of Ways and Means, to whom that part of the Presi. arrangemenis of the officers of the Bank of the United dent's message was referred, and that committee accordStates.”
ingly reported as follows: It had thus become the habitual policy of the bank at “The arrangement made by the bank for a temporary the approach of any large payment, to begin its prepara- postponement, with the consent of the holders, of the tions for a long period in advance, so as to collect its re- payment of five millions of the three per cent. debt, besources gradually, and tu distribute its disbursements over ing now substantially closed by the surrender to the Gov. as wide a sphere as possible.
erament of the certificates of stock except for a small In the year 1832 the country was heavily indebted to amount, and the whole debt itself, as far as respects the Europe for the large importations of the year 1831: and it Government, at an earlier period than it is probable it was particularly desirable to give to the community leis. would otherwise bave been, this question seems no longer ure to pay that debt out of their annual earnings, and to to present any important or practical object of inquiry, prevent any addition to the foreign demand in 1832. Now or io call for or admit any action of Congress upon it." ibere were more than twenty-five millions and a half of This ought to be satisfactory, yet is the subject now re. the principal and interest of that debt payable in the year vived, with the addition of two distinct errors in point of 1832, from December 31, 1831, to January 1, 1833, of fact. The first is, that the bank " was conscious that at which more than fifteen millions were to be paid in nine the end of the quarter it would not be able to pay over months, and between eight and nine of it 10 foreigners. the deposites:" whereas the state of the bank, as above The bank was fully prepared to make the first payment explained, proved its entire ability to make this payment, on the 1st of October, 1832.
and that its interposition was exclusively dictated by the The State banks of Philadelphia, New York, and Boston, desire to avert an additional trouble at a season of pestiowed to this bank
$2,280,000 | lence. The second is, that the part of the arrangement VOL. X.-Nn