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MARCH 29, 1830.)
Buffalo and New Orleans Road.
[H. oF R.
cle sboals of the Tennessee. Here it must cross the river;; is already provided with a much better means of transportbut by what means its passage is intended to be effected, ation than would be afforded by the proposed improvethe report does not inform us; it is thence, through many ment? Not so, sir, in the direction of the middle route; difficulties, conveyed to the Mississippi, at or near Baton there we do not propose the absurdity of making a nationRouge; from thence it follows the banks of that river to al road that cannot be needed; but, on the other hand, its New Orlenus. This is emphatically the western route, construction in a direction different from that of the the one particularly recommended by the gentleman from streams flowiog to the Atlantic, must afford a very extendVirginia ; [Mr. SMYTH) yet, sir, notwithstanding the en- ed accommodation to the inhabitants of the intermediate gineers report the distance of this line of road from Wash- sections of country, by facilitating the transportation of ington to New Orleans to be twelve hundred and eighty- their produce, if not to the destined market, at least to two miles, and that of the middle route, through North some point from which they would have the advantage of Carolina, South Carolina, and Georgia, only eleven hun- water conveyance. A preference founded on this view dred and six miles, the gentleman from Tennessee [Mr. of the situation of the country east of the mountains, is BLAIR] has roundly asserted that the western had the ad- clearly intimated in the report of the engineers; and alvantage in point of distance. [Mr. B. explained-he re- though it may not be found to obtain with eqnal force ferred to that through East Tennessee.] I certainly should throughout the entire line of survey, yet its general existhave understood the gentleman as he now explains bim-ence affords a sufficient reason why it should weigh much self, but he is still unsustained in his position ; for the same with the committee in fixing the direction of this road. report makes even his favorite directiou longer than that But there is in my part of North Carolina a description of of the middle survey; the difference is indeed inconsider trade that would be peculiarly benefited by this measure. able; but it is decidedly in favor of my side of the moun- We bave much intercourse with South Carolina and Geortains; but the other gentleman from Tennessee [Mr. gia in one direction, and Virginia in the other. To these ISACKS] will
, no doubt, admit me to be correct, when I States the farmers of my district of country are much in state that I understand him as joining the gentleman from the habit of wagoping their productions, either for the Virginia, in recommending the road through West Ten- purpose of exchange or barter, or with the more desirapessee. Taking this, therefore, as the western project, ble object of effecting a sale for cash. I will not say, sir, I will assume it as the standard of the comparison I intend that this trade exhibits the numerous caravans of wagons to institute between the different lines surveyed. I have hat we are told are seen crowding along the western road; already shown that distance, a very important considera- but I will say, it is far from being inconsiderable, and is tion, is decidedly in favor of the middle route; and I am much increasing, especially in the southern direction, and equally confident that the facilities for constructing a good is of sufficient importance to claim our atteution in the and durable road are also on my side of the question. It consideration of this part of the subject. is true that the report exhibits little or no difference in The military advantages of this western road have been this respect; but the gentleman from Tennessee [Mr. beightened and embellished by frequent allusions to the Isacks] has himself furnished the proof that corrects the city of New Orleans, as not only the scene of military opeerror of the engineers in this particular. He has shown rations, but as the theatre on which imperishable renown the entire unfitness of his country for the making of even was obtained. Every idea of defence connected with this a tolerable way, according to the plan proposed by the road seems irresistibly to terminate at this memorable bill; and it is so for the best of reasons—the great depth point. My colleague [Mr. Carson) was certainly very and richness of the soil of that favorite and bighly favored happy on this part of the subject; and although I could region render it unfit for the coustruction of a road com- but regard some portion of bis argument as underrating posed of earth only. This is a partial inconvenience that the importance of improvements in time of peace, tending we have all understood to apply to the gentleman's coun- to security in time of war, yet the reasons offered by him try; but which needs only to be stated, to convince us that were quite sufficient to show the utter inutility of taking its very existence implies an incalculably greater benefit this road out of its natural course solely with a view to in the abundant fertility of their lands.
the defence of New Orleans : for, whatever possible neThen, sir, whilst the bill proposes a road constructed of cessity there may be, at some future day, to muster the earth only, it is through the comparatively poor region of sons of the West at this far-famed theatre of war, I can my State, and a large extent of the survey still farther but believe that they will find their way thither more cheapsouth, that a soil will be found most happily adapted to its ly and expeditiously through other modes of conveyance construction; it would not only be more cheaply made, but, than that which this military road would afford; and, sir, when done, would be of a much more durable character. I have not heard it conteuded in argument, that any other
But, in a commercial aspect, it is contended that the point on the line of this western road was likely to present Western direction possesses very decided advantages ; yet, a field for military operations--no necessity is intimated if I rightly understand the report upon this subject, even of saving us from ourselves in the West; for, whatever that authority will be found in favor of the middle route, may be thought of the South, all is peace and quiet in for all purposes of internal commerce. By casting the that quarter--there the spirit of insubordination is not eye over the surveys through East and West Tennessee, thought to threaten disupion, or endanger our reposeit will be seen that they are carried for many miles in a di- the only possible cause of apprehension arises from their rection parallel to the course of the Tennessee, and other assertion of claim to the lands of the Government; and, for navigable streams, aud often upon their very banks, or at one, I hope, ere long, we shall remove this source of conthe distance of but a few miles. Instead, then, of this im. tention and apprehended danger, by making distributiou provement being called for by the absence of water com- of them among the several States of the Union. munication, the road, if established as proposed by the But, sir, should I even be disappointed in this favorite bill, can only be regarded as an anxiliary or substitute for measure, they do not threaten the Government with a the navigable streams every where to be met with in its military array in the field of battle ; but it is here, sis, in neighborhood, and running in the same direction. This is this hall of legislation, that we are told the Western States not only true in the State of Tennessee, but is remarkably will soon embody themselves in such numbers as no longer 80 through a portion of the country still farther south; for to petition for, and receive as a boon, that which they will not only are smaller streams to be accommodated with this then claini and obtain under the semblance of right. road, but for at least three hundred miles it is found tra With a view, sir, still further to diminish the claims of versing the very banks of the Mississippi. Then, is it not the route east of the mountains, the gentleman from Pennevident that much of the country througla which it will pass | sylvapuja (Mr. HEMPHILL] has said that we have on that
H. OF R.)
(MARCH 29, 1830. side a dense population, and are consequently capable of | admit that, in acting bere, we should, in the language of defending ourselves. Admit, for the sake of argument, the gentleman from Pennsylvania, (Mr. HEMPHILL) rethat this is now so; that, though presenting an extensive gard ourselves, on all general questions, as merely citisea coast, assailable at oumerous points by an invading foe, zens of the United States, I do believe I shall certainly we require no interior preparations with a view to a state sustain that character most essentially, not by seeking & of war.
I say, sir, admit the gentleman to be correct in beuefit for North Carolina at the expense of Tennessee, this, yet I wouid ask him how long will this be so Deny merely because it is the State from which I come, bat us this, and continue to withhold other benefits to which from the consideration, that, in the present instance, her we are entitled ; persist in a course of legislation imposing accommodation is connected with a still bigher object-the on us unequal burdens, and the already increasing tide attainment of a greater national benefit than would be of emigration will, io a little while, have so far diminished accomplished by omitting her interest. This view of the our population, as no longer to leave any pretence for the subject is offered, not in connexion with the idea that, gentleman's assertion. We shall then be so insignificant, under the constitution, we have not the power to do what when compared with the population of the new States, as we propose, but is intended to apply to this or any other to cease, in their estimation, to be objects worthy of na- subject of legislation, considered as a mere question of tional interest or concern. Yet the gentleman from Peno expediency and right among the several States; and, in sylvania, for a moment, seemed to present some faint hope this view of the matter, it cannot be urged that there of escaping from this melancholy fate: for, while inviting is a corrupting tendency in this or any other measure, us to support this bill, we were assored that other portions because it has the effect of improving the condition and of the country should hereafter partake of equal benefit: increasing the prosperity of the people of the different but this delusion lasted but for a day; for the gentleman States ; for such an objection would deny all right of benefrom Tennessee [Mr. Isacks] has explained what was ficence to the Government, and would give to it alone meant by “other portions of the country."' he defines it to the odious power of taxation and oppression. By such an be the rich regions of West Tennessee, Obio, and Ken- administration of this Government, the people of the States tucky; they are to be provided for by the gentleman's would soon become aliens in feeling to the Union, and plans, but in none of their beneficent designs is my imme. would regard the constitution as pot tending to promote diate section of the Union embraced. Relying, then, while the general good, but merely calculaxed to iniíct upua we may, upon the important fact of our yet possessing the them the evils, without the benefit of Government. Then, superiority in point of population, I feel myself justified sir, wbile objects of improvement, similar to that now unin using it as a powerful reason in favor of my side of the der consideration, bave beretofore been undertaken and question.
completed in other parts of our country, it is but just, With us, sir, Government is necessarily the creature of and in conformity with the principles of equality, that those over wbom it is established. Made and upheld by some portion of the benefits resulting from such measures, the will of the people, their adherence and attachment to should be distributed in that from wbich I come; but, init must ever be in proportion to the measure of benefit dependent of this consideration, I think, in relation to the they receive in return for their contributions to its support. present subject, the line of survey through my State preAnd, although, as bas been happily said by a gentleman sents advantages superior to those west of the mountains. from Rhode Island, (Mr. BURGES) we cannot expect these As a further argument in favor of our claim, I might advert governmental blessings to be dispensed among us with the to the peculiar hardships and afflictions of the people of that perfect equality of the dew of heaven, yet it is but just ill-starred section of ibe Union, arising, as they believe, that, in our acts of legislation, we keep an eye towards mainly from the upwise and ungenerous legislation of Conthe attainment of so desirable an object. In relation to gress upon subjects vitally affecting their interests. But, sir, the subject before us, we shall certainly consult that prin. while I forbear doling out a list of our oft repeated wrongs, ciple, by accommodating the greatest possible number of I confess I was but illy prepared to hear with patience our citizens. It is, therefore, desirable to see whetber the the imaginary sufferings and privations of the West. The bill, as now before the committee, conforms to this import- gentlemau from Teppessee, (Mr. Isacks] in his petition ant end and desigo of legislation.
for the establishment of this road, occupied much time in By reference to the report of the engineers upon this describing the forlorn condition of the people of bis counpart of the subject, we learn that, by the ceusus of 1820, try; he complained bitterly because there had been so the population of the counties and districts of country ac sınall a portion of Government money expended among tually traversed by the western route, is at least one bud- them; he spoke of the vast amount paid by that people for dred thousand less than that of the middle route ; and the the purchase of their lands, the large proportion of taxes entire population of the States through which these sur paid by them through the medium of consumption, and veys are carried is at least one million more, by pursuing concluded by exhibiting the inhabitants of the extensive the middle or eastern direction, than it is along the west- West as the eighth wonder of the world, in the fact that, er. Here, then, is a difference of no small amount, upon though thus afflicted and oppressed, theyyet lived !--they the score of population only; but, sir, when you add to yet survived! Now, sir, 1 cappot perceive any cause for this the very important fact, that this greater amount of the gentleman's admiration, and can but think that all be population divides itself into a greater pumber of inde- bas said, when rightly understood, is not only compatible pendent States, united with and acting politically upon with their bare existence, but is just that state of things ihe General Government, is there not a twofold reason from which we might expect to find all that comfort and presented in favor of the route I propose By going growing prosperity which I believe to be more truly dewest you pass through Virginia, Tennessee, and Alaba- scriptive of their real condition. It is true that, in most ma; in the eastern direction, Virginia, North Carolina, instances, they have bad to purchase their lands, but at a South Carolina, Georgia, and Alabama. Thus, by the west price most abundantly repaid by their amazing fertility, ern proposition, as confained in the bill
, North Carolina, producing pot only what is required for their own conSouth Carolina, and Georgia are wholly omitted, for the sumption, but affording a large supply for the wants of alone purpose of embracing the State of Tennessee. And, others. That a people thus situated, should be able to sir, friendly as are my feelings towards that State, and subsist, is, to my mind, no cause of wonder or astonishevery other member of our Union, I cannot, I ought not ment; and, sir, though it be true that the General Governto be expected to forget the superior claims of my own ment yet maintains its dominion over the unappropriated State: and, sir, let me not be charged with selfish and lands in all that region, our statute book abounds with almost contracted views on this subject; for, whilst I readilyl iodumerable instances of donations made to States, com.
| MARCH 29, 1830.]
(H. OF R. panies, and individuals in the West, for purposes of inter- as not only natioval in their character, but indispeusably dal improvement, the establishment of schools, and for necessary to the well-being, and even the very existence various other objects tending to improve their condition of the nation. and advance their prosperity. To objects of this descrip I night here, sir, conclude my remarks, having said all tion, at least ten millions of acres bave been appropriated; that I intend upon the mere question which I proposed and so liberad has been the policy of the Government on to discuss; but I have alluded to an amendment, which,
these subjects, that applications from this quarter are in conclusion, I intend to offer; and as I propose (should | seldom rejected: and but the other day, with a near ap- it be adopted) to vote for the bill, I hope I may be per
pronch to upauimity, we passed a law relieving the pur- mitted, not to enter into an argument in support of my I chasers of the public lands from a large amount of their opinion, but simply to say that I believe the power to do
debt, contracted under the credit system. Admit then, the act proposed does rightfully belong to the Government; that it is true, as stated by the gentleman from Peppsylva- and, in couformity to this opinion, I have, on former occania, (Mr. Hemphill] that the new States have not any casions, voted for mensures not differing in principle from funds in lands for making public improvements, who can the one now under consideration. But, while sustaining believe that, if they had been the owners of the soil, they this power of the Government, and acting upon the high would, under their own policy and legislation, have ap- conviction of its great inportance, I have felt oo little emplied so large a portion to these objects as has been done barrassmeut for the want of the countenance and co-operafor them by this GovernmentDo not understand me, sir, tion of yourself, and many other of our southern politicians; as objecting to these instances of liberality, for many of and though I cannot surrender my judgment on account of them received my support, and, in giviog it, I was unid- this discouraging reflection, yet I will not withhold the fluenced with the hope thereby of obtaining any boon for tribute of my respect, and even admiration, for the upmy owo State; (oo, I disdain the sordid idea ;) but I acted shaken firmness and distinguished ability with which your from the conviction that the prosperity of the West, or opinions bave been sustained. They have not yielded to any other large section of our Union was, in some degree, those nice shades of distinction, which, in the opinion of the prosperity of the nation. But, sir, if this and every some, may bave been sufficient to obviate all constitutional other measure of internal improvement is to have a west objections, when the measure proposed bappened to look ern direction --if the Southero States are to be wholly towards their immediate constituents. neglected under the operation of this system, and if we But, sir, were I to attempt an argument in support of my are again and again to hear the affected language of com- opinion, I could not rest it upon the distinction taken by plaint from the West, then, sir, I am prepared to with the gentleman from Virginia, (Mr. Smyth.] That gentlehold my assent to any further appropriations in that quar- man denies the right of the Government to make the road, ter: justice to my constituents will require it-a regard to yet he says we may appropriate the money for that object; the principles of equality will demand it. We bave also Congress may give the essential means for constructing, been entertained by the gentleman from Tennessee (Mr. but have not the power actually to construct or make; but, 1Backs] with a sort of begging argument, founded upon in yielding bis assent to this bill
, he virtually concedes the the great expenditure of public money along our sea coast latter power, unless he intends to do the very idle thing in the erection of fortifications, dock yards, and other of giving the money merely to be wasted and expended works connected with the defence and commerce of the for no particular purpose ; for if the road is to be made at nation; aod the gentleman has even objected to the con- all
, the bill proposes that it shall be done under the authotributious of the West in the building up of our davy-arity of this Government
, without the agency or superinmeasure in which he seems to think they have a very retendence of any other power. Perceiving this difficulty, mote interest. Perhaps, sir, wheo more, and still more of he takes a distinction in favor of this road, and seems to adthe public lands shall be appropriated towards the improve- mit that we may make it, not under the general powers ment of the Tennessee at the Muscle shoals and other points conferred by the constitution, but under the compact enof that river, the gentleman may be accommodated with a tered into with Ohio, Alabama, and other new States, by little navy of his owo-ope that shall be peculiarly west- which it is stipulated that five per cent of the sales of the eru; and, therefore, udobjectionable to that gentleman public lands shall be applied to the making of roads in or I was surprised to bear the illiberal and mistaken views leading to those States ; but certainly a compact with a contained in this part of the gentleman's argument; for, State cannot enlarge the constitution, and thereby confer a can it be said, with the least plausibility, that fortifications power which did not exist independent of such agreement; erected and designed along our extended and exposed this would be making the powers of the Government either Atlantic border are other than measures of strength aod greater or less
, according to the terms of the bargain it precautiou, looking to the security of the nation generally? might happen to make with the people of any of our terriIn consonance with this anti-national sentiment would be tories, when applying for admission into the Union. Nor an objection op my part to the increasing expenditure of can I perceive, according to the opinions of some, how the our military posts designed for the protection of our west- assent of a State could confer upon the General Governern frontier. These objects are alike in principle, and ment the power of acting upon a subject prohibited by are both equally entitled to the support of those who con- the constitution. This Government, sir, with all its attrisult the peace and safety of every portion of this Union. butes, must exist independent of the will of any State; and Nor should the gentleman decline a common interest in while its powers cannot be curtailed by opposition, neither our paval armament, intimately connected as it is with the can they be enlarged by consent, except in the way pointed defence and commerce of the nation. He has tuld us that out for an amendment of the constitution iteelf. But, sir, the people of the West are great consumers of imports, while I deny the necessity of this assent, and its utter in. and, consequently, pay much indirectly to the General ability to confer power, it might often be prudent and Government; and we are assured that this road is greatly wise, in many instances, to abstain from the exercise of Deeded to facilitate their supplies from Baltimore and federal authority, without the assent of the State or States Philadelphia ; yet their arrival at those ports is intimately to be affected by it; for, upon ordinary occasions, I would connected with these maritime expenditures of wbich the pause long, and consider much, before I would run gentleman seems to complain: and, whatever comment or counter even to the prejudices of the smallest member of construction of the constitution may be necessary to sus- this Union. taiu many other acts claimed on the part of the Govern This I would do in the spirit of conciliation and forment, these of which I have just spoken are conspicuously bearance, and without yielding the right of this Governprovided for in that instrument, and should be regarded ment, when the public good imperiously demanded it, to
H. OF R.]
Buffalo and New Orleans Road.
[MARCH 29, 1830.
exercise all or any of its high functions, even in opposition dresses itself, have urged that that is the best route ; that to the will of all the States. It is not all that this Go- it is the national route; and, if it does not pass that way, vernment can constitutionally do, that the harmony and they will vote against the bill. Nine-tenths, ninety-nineprosperity of the States require to be continually called hundredths of their constituents, if it does not pass on the into action; but when emergencies of great national mo- middle route, will think it wholly inexpedient, if not unment arise, or some general interest is proposed to be ad- constitutional, to make the road at all. One of the genvanced, a liberal interpretation of its powors will often mer from North Carolina, [Mr. Carson] I believe, said be found necessary to subserve the end and object of its that he would vote against the bill upon any route, but had creation. If, sir, we look within the limits of the mere warmly urged, if the road was made, that the middle was letter of the constitution for the charter of our legislative the only true route. Here is a conflict between sections privileges, there is scarce a page of our legislation that -between masses of your population, whose local intewill not be found to have passed the pale of our authority. rests come in collision; and how are this Congress to de. What words of that instrument give us the right to pen- cide between them? My two colleagues have stated in their sion our citizens, and to appropriate thousands for their places, that, in their opinion, the western is the only true support? How have we relieved the sufferings of foreign- route, and they think it would be inexpedient to make ers, when visited by any sudden calamity! How do we the road on any other. The two gentlemen from North repair the ravages of fire in any of our own cities or towns ? | Carolina bave stated in their places, that, in their opinion, How will we sustain the long list of appropriations of the the middle is the only true route, and that it would be inpublic lands to institutions for the promotion of science expedient to make the road on any other route; and, doubtand objects of benevolence? These, and many other acts less
, there are gentlemen bere residing on the southern sanctioned by every Congress, and approved by all our route, who think that the best and only expedient route. Chief Magistrates, are, like the power to make roads and the engineers, in their report, have cautiously left the canals, not authorized by the express enumeration of them scales equally balanced between these respective main in the constitution; but do, in my humble judgment, con- routes and their several subordinate branches ; and how form to the spirit, scope, and design of those powers tbat are we to decide ? are enumerated. But, sir, I do not intend a discussion of I know, sir, it is exceedingly popular to tell the people this subject, and will conclude by moving the following of any section of the country that the Government is amendment to the bill :
about to expend large amounts of public money amongst [Here Mr. S. offered his amendment, proposing to strike them for improvements
. But when you tell them that it out the western, and to insert the middle or eastern route, is their own money, that they are taxed to pay it, and that leaving the selection to the commissioners to be appointed there is a national debt to pay, will the people of any one under the provisions of the bill.]
section or district agree that it shall be expended in anMr. POLK pext rose, and said, that two of the delega- other, and for the local advantage of another? No, if they tion from my own State having given their views in sup- get it themselves, it is well; if it goes to their neighbors, port of this bill, I ask the indulgence of the committee it is upjust and all wrong: Sir, this is, perhaps, natural ; whilst I endeavor, in a plain and practical manner, to as- we are selfish beings; and I beg my colleagues to under sign the reasons of the vote which I feel constrained to stand me, when I speak of local interests, as not intending give. My two colleagues and myself bave been in the to apply my remarks to their districts exclusively : their habit, during our service together bere, of thinking and constituents are like the constituents of other gentlemen, acting together upon most important subjects. Upon this and equally operated upon by their local interests. I we differ in opinion, and are compelled to separate. mean to show the effect generally, and upon all sections, of
My colleague, who first addressed the committee, (Mr. these splendid schemes of internal improvement which have BLAIR] dealt with his usual candor. He informed us that been projected; of the hundreds of reconnoissances and the road contemplated to be made by this bill, addressed surveys of roads and canals which have been made. I itself to the local interests of his constituents; that they mean to show the delusion practised upou whole comwere in favor of the road; and that bis skirts should be munities, whereby they are bought up to the support of clear of the imputation of disobeying their will Yes, sir, these splendid schemes
, by the lure of local advantages the road addresses itself to the local interests bis held out to them ; by the promise to scatter and squander constituents, and this is the evil of this and all similar pro- the public money in the construction of a road or canal, positions ; it is the iniquity of this whole system of internal leading through their immediate neighborhoods, and, improvement; it does address itself to the local interests of thereby, addressing itself to their local interests. sections; it deludes, and deceives, and misleads whole sec This bill, and the discussion we have bad upon it, furtions and communities; whole masses are bought up, and nishes the best practical commentary we could possibly have become advocates of this system, with the prospect of lo- bad upon this system; and I beg leave to exemplify, by : cal advantage to themselves. They look only to their particular examination of its details, the tendency and inown local interests, and to the prospect of baving disburs- evitable consequences of persisting in it. You are about ed, in their own immediate neighborhoods, large amounts to construct a mammoth road, fifteen hundred miles in of the people's money. Let me ask either of my col- length, from Buffalo, in the State of New York, to New leagues, through whose respective districts one branch of Orleans, passing by this city; and you propose, by this bill
, rond bas been surveyed, if it were to pass on either of the to appropriate two millions and a quarter of dollars, to be other routes, if they would vote for it? If it were to pass applied to this object. From this city to New Orleans, on either the middle or the metropolitan route, would not the bill provides that the road shall pursue the general nine-tenths, would pot pinety-nine-hundreths of their own course of one of the branches of the western route. This constituents, whose local interests would not then be ad- end of the road I will examine presently. From this city dressed, think it wholly inexpedient, if not unconstitution to Buffalo the road is not located to ady particular route al, to make the road at all? I repeat it: would either of my by the bill. It is to go from here to Buffalo, and that is colleagues deem it a national work! Would they vote for the only desiguation. The' particular locality is to be deit? They would not. And why would they doti Be- cided by commissioners. Now, how many reconnaiscalise, in their opinion, the western route is the best route, sances have been made between these two points, and how and the only national route. They think the western many routes surveyed in this age of engineering I route the only true route. But the two gentlemen from bold a document iu my band, sir, from the Engineer De. North Carolina, (Mr. CARSON and Mr. SHEPPERD] to the partment, which is a perfect anomaly, and furnishes the local interests of whose constituents the middle route ad-'l best practical illustration of the practical operations of his
MARCH 29, 1830.)
Buffalo and New Orleans Road.
(H. OF R.
system. By this document it appears that twenty-one dis- I might be lost. Why are not the friends and advocates of tinct routes have been examined; and, take my word for this bill willing to designate in the bill the precise route of it, every town, and village, and hamlet, and every mill, the road to Buffalo ? Evidently from the conviction, on cross road, and tavern house, on each and every one of their part, that they would lose the support of the repre. these twenty-one routes, expect this road; and each has sentatives of all the other routes. I appeal to gentlemen no doubt that this is the only national way; and that' on themselves, who support this bill, if this is a fair and stateseither of the others the road would be utterly useless and man-like legislation. If the road must be made, why not inexpedient. Yes, sir, there have been surveyed five grand fix the route in the law which authorizes its construction ? routes and fifteen subordinate or collateral routes, from Sir, we all understand how it happened that these several this city to Buffalo, a distance of about three hundred and routes, twenty-one in number, came to be examived by seventy-five miles. The five grand routes are designated brigades of topographical engineers. The examinations in the report of the engineers :
were made through portions of Maryland, Pennsylvania, The Eastern route,
and the western part of New York, during the last adminThe Western route, 3
istration, and during the heat of the canvass for the last The Painted Post route,
Presidential election. Some hopes were, likely, entertainThe Pine creek route,
ed, that these respective portions of the country might give The Direct route.
their support to the then administration in the ensuing The eastern route has been surveyed in pine different di- election. And, in order to stimulate the people, and ensure rections. One of these is to pass "Fredericktown, Gettys- ( as it was supposed) their support the more certainly, burg, Carlisle, Millerstown, Lewistown, Karthaus, Drift- brigades of engineers were sent out in twenty different wood creek, Port Allegbany, Olean, Aurora.” The people directions, to survey a great road. This powerful and on this route, and in these towns, if they are like all others delusive branch of Executive patronage was employed to whose local interests are addressed, will have no doubt but induce whole sections, whose local interests were addressthat this is the only proper route, that is, the only national ed, to believe, that, if they wanted this road, the best way route; and they will be greatly dissatisfied if they do not get to secure it was, to support the ther. administration. We the road. But on eight other branches of the grand “east- have all seen and known the powerful effect of these reern route," each passing through other towns and other connoissances of the United States' engineers through the neighborhoods, the people will have as little doubt that country. I speak not of this project alone. Why was it theirs is the national route, and that they are entitled to that this road to Buffalo, all of a sudden, should have been the road. The grand“ western route” bas been sur- deemed of so much pational importance? Why should the veyed in three different directions ; one of these is to pass delusion be kepd up any longer? The certain effect of Hagerstown, Loudon, Huntington, Philipsburg, Trout this system, as exeniplified by this road, is, first, to excite Run, Instantur, Ellicottsville, Barton. In the estimation hopes ; second, to produce conflicts of section arrayed of the people on this route, this would be the national against section; and, lastly, dissatisfaction and heart-burnway, and they would be entitled to this great road. But ings amongst all who are not accommodated. the grand " Painted Post route,” (and 1 frankly acknow I come now to examine the southern portion of this road, ledge that my limited knowledge of the topography of that from this city to New Orleans. Three grand routes the country does not inform me where the " Painted Post” bave been projected: the eastern, the middle, and the is,) with its four distinct branches, are, no doubt, exceed- western, each with its subordinate and collateral routes. ingly national; and each branch of it exclusively so, in the The distance between the extreme points of the westopinion, at least, of those whose local interests are address. ern and eastern routes, is near six hundred miles; and ed by it. One of the four branches of this route would the first thing that forcibly strikes the mind is, that bere is pass Westminster, Siddonstown, Valley of Susquehaupa, an immense country, the extreme lateral points of which Williamsport, Peter's Camp, Bath, Mount Morris. But are six hundred miles apart, each and every portion of the graud" Pine creek route ;" aye, sir, the grand " Pipe which has been flattered with the bope, excited by the creek route," with its four distinct subordinate branches, visit or reconnoissances of the United States' engineers, must not be overlooked. Doubtless that will be the most that each would have this great road to pass through each national route of all, at all events in the opinion of the respective section of country. This bill provides that it settlers on Pine creek. (I suppose there is such a creek shall be taken upon the general direction of the western from the name of the route,) and by the people in the route, as surveyed by the United States' engineers; but neighborhood whose local interests are addressed by it. does any one koow, can either of my colleagues tell me, One of the four branches of this grand route will pass where its precise locality will be ? On the western route, through Wormleysburg, Uniontown, Jersey shore, Cow- from Washington as far as Lexington, in Virginia, we are dersport, Oswego creek, Olean, Aurora. And, lastly, in informed, by the report of the engiveers, that“ two dithis document, comes the “ direct route," which would pass rections have been examined in relation to the western Weedsborough, Shippensburg, Valley of Driftwood Creek, route, one through Rock Fish Gap, the other through Barton. Here, then, sir, in the rage for engineering, sur- Snicker's Gap.” The people on both doubtless expect, veying, reconnoitering, and electioneering, during the last but both cannot get it. From Lexington it passes Abingadministration, the hopes and expectations of a whole don to Knoxville. At Knoxville the route forks. The scope of country near a hundred miles in width, filled, main route, first surveyed, diverges from that point to the I admit
, with as virtuous and respectable a population as left, passes New Philadelphia, Athens, enters Alabama, any in the Union, op twenty-one distinct routes for this passes Centreville, Demopolis, and thence to New Orroad, have been raised on tiptoe. Each expects, and leads. The other branch from Knoxville passes the Crab each has no doubt that it is entitled to the road. The Orchard, Sparta, Winchester, Huntsville, in Alabama, hopes of all are kept up. The representatives of each and hence to Baton Rouge, to New Orleans. The bill does all these routes vote for this bill. But all cannot be grati- not determine which of these routes it is to go. If it fied. Twenty of the twenty-one routes must be disap- should be located on the New Philadelphia route from pointed; and if this bill located the road to some one of Knoxville, as one of my colleagues, (Mr. Blan] if I unthe routes definitely, I have my doubts whether the re- derstood him, contends it ought, it will not touch the dispresentatives here of all the other routes would not vote trict represented by my other colleague [Mr. ISACKS]; it against it. It is not the policy of the friends of this pro- will not then address itself to the local interests of his conject to locate the road definitely in the bill, for they might stituents; and, in that event, I desire to know whether he thereby lose votes from the other routes, and the bill will consider it sufficiently national to vote for it; would