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35th Cong..., 1 st Sess.
Arrest of William Walker-Mr. Taylor.
Ho. OF Reps.
The holiest cause that tongue or sword
way. Show to the world your physical power subject connected with one which occupied their fails, that in the public estimation he is guilty of and your purpose; and do noi allow, in the con attention and the attention of the House at an a crime, and is called a rebel. Yes, sir, an unstruction of the great highway, either personal leerly part of the session. It is one which grows successful attempt to rid a people of tyranny and interests or political and sectional prejudices to out of the capture of General William Walker in oppression is, in the eyes of the world, rebellion! control your action. The enterprise rises above Nicaragua, and the bringing hack of that person « Rebellion! foul, dishonoring word, such mean and lesser things. The integrity of and his followers to the territories of the United
Whose wrongful blight so oft has stained the Union and your nationa. honor are at stake. States. It is not my purpose to enter into the sub
Of mortal ever lost or gained. Construct this road, and the world will honor lject of the character of the expedition of Walker.
How many a spirit born to bless, and respect you now, while posterity will praise It is not my purpose to engage in any examina
Hath sunk beneath thy withering name, and revere you.
tion of his previous history. I shall assume, Whom but 2 days-an bour's success, Mr. Chairman, I have thus, very imperfectly, with a view to the discussion of points to which
Had wanted to eternal fame." I grant, fulfilled my task. It has been my earn I wish to direct inquiry, that General Walker and I remember well these words, uttered in bitterest endeavor, as stated in the outset, to exbibit, his followers, whilst they were within the limits ness of heart by one of the great poets, who has, though in a sketch-like way, the vast material re of the United States were guilty of a violation of
but a short time since, passed from the scenes of sources of New Mexico, as enibraced in heragri- the laws of the United States in setting on foot an
mortal action; for I felt that they were wrung cultural, mineral, and pastoral wealth; to set forth | expedition against Nicaragua. It is known to us from him by the memories which clung to him a true view of her isolated territorial condition; | all'ihat there are laws in existence which prohibit through life of those who, in his native land, had to proclaim her demands upon your protection persons within the limits of the United States attempted to bring about its political regeneration and fostering care; to inform the publje mind of from attempting to form a military organization, and had failed, and who, for their attempts, had the nature of the country as respects its induce or attempting to set on foot a military expedition fallen under the ax of the public executioner. ments to immigration; and, so far as it rests in which is destined to act against or within the No, sir; after having looked on and seen William my humble power, to show that your great na limits of another country which is at peace with Walker engage in that enterprise which terminational high way should pass through New Mex the United States.
ted in his becoming the chief of the Republic of ican territory:
I assume, then, that General Walker did set on Nicaragua;after having looked on and been a witMy object is to open up this almost terra incoge foot within the United States a military expedi ness, as it were, of the contest which raged in nita to settlement from the various flourishing | tion to be carried on against the State of Nica that country for a considerable length of time, and States, North, South, East, and West, of the ragua; and that, in engaging in that enterprise, at last terminated in his overthrow; and, preservConfederacy; to give an impetus to and increase General Walker and his followers did violaie the ing silence then, I am not the man to attempt to their population; to sow the quickening germs of laws of the United States. I assume further, that cast censure or even to venture upon public critfuture progress; and, in the proper development it was within the power, that it was the right, and icism of his acts or his policy, in these Halls, of the resources of a section of this land, by na that it was the duty of the President of the Uni when he has met with defeat; defeat, too, brought ture so supremely blessed, while directly adding | ted States, to exercise all the executive power of about, it is more than probable, by the improper to the welfare of my own people, to benefit at the nation for the purpose of arresting the persons
and unwarranted interference of another Power, large the great Union of which we are now a fed engaged in that enierprise, whilst they were with who violated the law of nations and her obliga. erative part.
in the limits of the United States; and that it was tions to another State, by intermeddling with the It must be borne in mind, sir, that we are not competent and proper for him to have exercised internal affairs of a separate and an independent a population new, unstable, and heterogeneous in that power for the purpose of breaking up that people. its element, such as has poured into Nebraska and expedition at any period after its departure from I'will now proceed, Mr. Chairman, to touch other infant Territories of the Union; and which the shores of the United States, and while it was upon the subject that I desire to bring especially afterwards, in a relentless conflict and eternal upon the high seas.
to the notice of the committee. It is known to all clashing of dissimilar interests, has given to But before engaging in the course of remark that the executive power of the United States was " bleeding Kansas” voice for her echoing and ag. which I propose to pursue, I wish to state that it exerted for the purpose of arresting that enteronizing “ shrieks.” But we are a nation in our is not my intention to make any reflection of any prise after its leader had departed from the United selves, with our peculiar characteristics, customs, kind, or to express any opinion, as it regards the States, and that the vessels of war employed uponi and prejudices, coming into this Republic, not character or the merits of the conduct of General that service were not enabled to intercept the exas a conquered people, but rather by honorable Walker in setting on foot that expedition; that it pedition upon the high seas. It is further known treaty; and now seeking therein just recognition is not my purpose to express any opinion with that that expedition reached the shores of Nicaraof our inevrporate part though an intelligent ap- respect to his character as a military leader, or his gua, and that Walker and his followers landed preciation of the principles of this Government, character as a public man, whilst he was charged upon its soil; that afterwards the officers of the and because of a desire, long ago entertained, to with the control of the affairs of Nicaragua. United States landed upon the soil of Nicaragua, 22 of be the subjects of its protecting arın.
Whatever might have been, whatever might be and by force took them into their possession, and We know, in truth, in New Mexico, no North, now, my opinion; however much I might be dis by force brought them from the soil of Nicaragua no South, no East, no West. Sectional feuds and posed to condemn anything in his conduct; how and into the territorial limits of the United States; civil embroilments elsewhere, wild and threaten ever much I might be disposed to censure any of that since their arrival within the territorial limits ing in their stormy outbreaks, reach us only by his military actions; however I might be disposed of the United States, indictments have been found report; and fanaticism and ultraism, the common to depreciate his civil merits as the executive chief against those persons for a violation of the laws birth of the same dark school of treason and se of that country;I, for one, certainly shall not now of the United States, and that they are soon to be dition, are úiter and uninvited strangers to our carp at his conduct, throw censure upon his ac
put upon their trial. peaceful borders.
tions, or depreciate his capacity, after having been Now, sir, to my mind, if they are tried, the We want, sir, a healthy, harmonious, active, silent during that period when he acted a part, Government of the United States will take a step and energetic population among us. Not individ which was supposed to be a great one, in the af that is wrong in itself, and that may, in the end, uals with black carpet sacks in their hands, con fairs of a neighboring State. I repeat it, sir, no lead to great embarrassment in the future. With a taining all their worldly goods; or others, who, matter how objectionable I might think the con view to call public attention to what I conceived as in a special instance charged lately, may cross duct of Walker, whilst he was the military and might be the impropriety of permitting such a an interested border for the purpose of a vote; but political chief of Nicaragua, this certainly is not trial, and what might be the embarrassments people who, guided by the counselings of the bet ihe time I should choose to parade it before the which would follow upon such action on the part ier instincts of human nature, are prompted to world. I would not willingly add a straw to the of the United States, I had the honor, not long settle in the Territory to improve their own con burdens borne by the unfortunate; and certainly since, to offer to the House a resolution, which dition, and that, likewise, of their offspring. We I could not find it in my heart, whatever other's was in the following words: ask fitting outlets for our expanding trade; we as may, to criticise and carp at the past career of a “Resolved, That the President be requested to consider pire to build ourselves into a thriving and perma brave man, when overwhelmed with misfortune. whether William Walker and his followers, recently seized nent prosperity; we assume to take the place and After having been silent in the palmy days of his
by the naval forces of the United States, within the territo: position to which we are entitled in this great power, I will not, I cannot, throw upon him cen
rial limits of the Republic of Nicaragua, and brought back
to the United States, can be tried under indicunents found Commonwealth. And, sir, I express the senti. sure, or attempt to condemn his acis, when he is against them in the courts of the United States for offenses ment, that I see a bow of promise smiling on the suffering from the stings of an adverse fortune. alleged to have been committed by them, in the l’nited future of New Mexico, under whose brilliancy I am one of those who remember that the judg. Tation of the principles heretofore recognized and actel con
States, prior to the said seizure as aforesaid, without a vidshe will ultimately realize her brightest hope, and ment which is pronounced by the world upon pub- by the Goverument of the United States in its public policy obiain, al no distant day, a high and elevated lic men is determined not by the intrinsic merits and that he he also requested to consider whether such trial place in the galaxy of Siates.
of their actions, but by the fortune which atiends of the said William Walker and bis followers, with the perthem. I remember well that in a multitude of in- likely to give rise to embarrassinents and difficulties inclus
inission and by the authority of the Executive, will not be ARREST OF WILLIAM WALKER.
stances in the history of the world, when men future management of various questions necessarily con
have been engaged in those enterprises which nected with our relations with other countries." SPEECH OF HON. MILES TAYLOR, were legitimate in the eye of reason,
An objection was made to that resolution, and
in the opinion of all right-thinking men, were in it was not received by the House. I desired, hox-
ever, IN THE House of REPRESENTATIVES,
that it should appear in the Globe, in order
visited with popular reprobation when they en then to take advantnge of an opportunity, such The House bring in the Committee of the Whole on the countered failure. I remember well that when one
as this, for the purpose of presenting my views to state of the Umon -departs from the ordinary course of human action
the House upon the points raised by the resoluMr. TAYLOR said: for the purpose ofestablishing a new Government,
tion. Mr. Chairman: I desire to engage the attention or of overturning an old one, if he succeeds he is
Mr. Chairman, this resolution presents for con of the committee for a short time in relation to a a patriot and a hero; but I remember, too, if he i sideration two questions: First, whether there is
of a 30as
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to see! 27.0tes
as I designet
any right on the part of the Government of the part of the Governments whose citizens have been which he had escaped, for the purpose of subjectUnited States to try these men? And in the next wronged by captures made within the limits of a I ing him to punishment. We all remember, for I place, if the power of the Government of the Uni neutral territory, to enforce the claims of its cit- || believe that there is not an American citizen ted Siates is exercised so that they are subjected | izens to reparation for the wrong against the neu whose bosom has not swelled with pride at the to a trial--whether that fact will not, in the end, tral Power whose duty it was to protect her terri recollection of the fact that one of our own citiproduce embarrassment in the future with respect | ritory, and all those within its limits, from hostile zens, a commander of one of our own national to our relations with foreign countries ?
aggression, because that Power was in a position || vessels, who was then in the port where the Now, as to the first question whether there is a to assert a legal right against the offending nation, wrongful seizure was made, did not hesitate to right to try these persons? If they had remained and by its failure to do so, necessarily became re make use of force for the purpose of rescuing that within the limits of the United States it does not sponsible to those who had suffered wrong with man from the grasp of Austria. He took him and of course admit of doubt that it would have been in their jurisdiction, for the value of the property brought him to the United States. An official corproper to have proceeded against them, and to of which they had been illegally deprived. respondence was the result between the Austrian have subjected them to trial in the manner pro But, Mr. Chairman, though it is, in point of fact, Government and the Government of the United vided for by law. But it must be remembered true that the courts of belligerent Powers condemn States; and the Government of the United States that they left the United States, and that they are the property captured by their arms in neutral justified the act of its officer; and, in my judga not now voluntarily within its limits; that they waters, it does not follow that such condemnation ment, properly justified it, because the act of the have been brought by force, and by force em is rightful, unless it be upon the principle that Austrian official in assuming to arrest under Ausployed by the United States itself, back, within might makes right. Upon no other principle can trian laws a criminal in a foreign jurisdiction, for the territorial jurisdiction of the United States. the practice be maintained. The great end of war the purpose of carrying him back by compulsion,
Now, sir, by the law of nations, the soil of Nic- l is mischief; and the controlling principle with bel and subjecting him to punishment, was in violaaragua, as well as that of every other independent | ligerents is to do all the injury possible to each tion of the principles of international law, and a State, is sacred. Under that law, in every age, other. When the state of war exists the belli- violation of the first principles of common jusit has been held and recognized as a principle es gerents never listen to the voice of justice, because, tice. tablished by the universal judgment of mankind, amid the clang of arms the laws are silent.” But, sir, these are not the only instances. There that any intrusion into the territory of one people || But, in a state of peace, there can be no justifica- has been still another instance identical in charby the authority of another, no matter for what tion, no excuse, on the part of any country, for acter with the one which I am now commenting purpose, was a violation of right. There can be disregarding the plain, palpable principle of inter on. It is one not generally known, because the no rightful exercise of power on the part of the national law. In my opinion, it will be wrong for facts connected with it were not of a character to United States, or any other Government, within the Government of the United States to attempt to excite great public attention, but which I happen its limits, unless when engaged in actual war with enforce its laws with respect to these individuals, to be familiar with, because the seizure was made that country. After a declaration of war, it would when they have been brought within the jurisdic- || within the limits of a city in which I was then a be perfectly competent for the military force of tion of the United States by compulsion. And resident. It is but some eight years ago since a the United States to enter into that territory, to now, sir, I will take the liberty of referring to subject of the Queen of Spain, engaged in some make captures, to bring away from her soil the some instances in our national history, for the enterprise within the Island of Cuba by which he individuals captured, and subject them to what purpose of showing that the principle upon which | violated the laws of that island and subjected himever consequences might follow the acts which I base this conclusion has been constantly recog self to punishment I believe to the punishment they had previously committed. But in a state nized by the Government of the United States in of death-and escaped from that island and took of peace, any such seizure made upon that soil is all its actions with respect to foreign Powers. refuge in the United States. He was found in the illegal, and any such capture followed up by those In the early history of our Government, when | city of New Orleans, and the Captain-General of captured being brought back to the territorial its executive functions were discharged by the the Island of Cuba, acting through the consul of jurisdiction of the United States, would no more greatest, the wisest, and the best man the world Spain at the port of New Orleans, employed men authorize the Government of the United States to has ever seen-by him who, in language that is who, by force, captured this man, placed him on permit them to be tried, than if they had never embalmed in the hearts of all true Americans, was board of a vessel, and carried him to Cuba with left the soil of Nicaragua,
“ first in war, first in peace, and first in the hearts the design of subjecting him to the penalty which Sir, the principle of the law of nations, that the of his countrymen”--I say, when the adminis he had incurred by his violation of the laws of soil of a country is inviolate, that no other coun tration of the executive functions of the Govern the island: and what was the result? Did our try has a right to enter into its territorial limits, ment of the United States were discharged by that Government assume that he could be rightfully that any entrance into its territory, when in a man, the principle I now invoke was recognized tried, stranger though he was? No, sir. Armed State of peace, is unlawful, and can produce no and acted on, not only with respect to property, ships of the United States were dispatched to legal result, extends so far that even when two bel- but with respect to the rights of persons. Who Cuba, and this man, thus unjustifiably, wrongligerents are engaged in conflict, when a state of is there who has American blood in his veins who fully seized upon our own soil, and carried by war exists between them, so that the citizens of is not familiar with the history of Lafayette ? compulsion into the jurisdiction within whose the two countries, whenever they meet, may en Who is there that does not know that when he limits he had violated ihe law, was required to be gage in battle, and those having a superiority of escaped from France, during the troubles of her delivered up. And he was delivered up. forces may rightfully capture and make their own Revolution, that he was seized by one of the Eu Now, sir, shall we permit, shall we insist on the property of the others-it is a settled principle ropean despots and put in prison, because of his the trial of these men, and subject them to the of international law that if the property of one of connection with the revolutionary change which i| penalty imposed by our laws for offenses which the belligerents on the high seas, when exposed to had taken place in France; because of his conductiney have commitied against them, when they, be captured by the enemy, succeeds in getting into on French soil, as a citizen, in those great events too, have been wrongfully seized upon a foreign neutral waters, it is not subject to capture. It, which led to the overthrow of the French mon soil, and brought by compulsion within our jurishowever, often happens that belligerents make | archy-which led to the dethronement and exe diction? captures in violation of this principle. When that cution of Louis XIV. and Marie Antoinette, a Mr. LEITER. Who has the right to complain is the case-though the general rule is, that the daughter of the Austrian Emperor. He was im but the party aggrieved ? In the case of Ray, we courts of the belligerent making captures have ex prisoned for years in the castle of Olmutz, under were the party aggrieved. Why? Because he elusive jurisdiction in cases of capture made by the authority of Austria. Washington remon was seized upon American soil. Should not comits citizens-it is still admitted everywhere, when strated with the Government of Austria. He plaint in this case, then, be made by Nicaragua? a capture is made by a belligerent in the waters called upon her to release this man, who was then and have we had any complaint from that Govof a neutral State, that the capture is nulland void, incarcerated in one of her prisons; and it was on ernment? and that the courts of the neutral State have juris, the principle that he was imprisoned for acts done Mr. TAYLOR, of Louisiana. That would be diction in all such cases, with full authority io ad- upon the soil of France, and beyond the jurisdic- perfectly true so far as it relates to the matter of judicate them, and restore the property captured tion of the Austrian courts and the Austrian Em- power; but in answer to the observation of the io the rightful owners. Under that principle cap peror, and that Austria had, under the law of na gentleman from Ohio, [Mr. LEITER,] I would say tured property has again and again been restored; tions, no rightful jurisdiction over him.
That if Koszta had not made a declaration of his under that principle the courts of the United States, And again, sir, it is but a short time since this intention to become an American citizen, we or the Government of the United States, have Government was engaged in a correspondence would have had no authority to interfere. We again and again restored property captured in the with that same Power with respect to the arrest could not have rescued him from the gripe of the waters of the United States, or by persons who of Martin Koszta, formerly a Hungarian citizen. Austrian officials. But while that was true,
and were within the jurisdiction of the United States. If Koszta had gone voluntarily within the limits while he would have been subject to capture and But that principle can, from its very nature, only of the Austrian empire, he would have been legii- to punishment, still his capture would not have be enforced by the action of the neutral Power. imately subjected to her authority. It is known been less unlawful, nor would the punishment inThough it is right, though such capture within to us all that he had violated the laws of the Aus ficted on him have been any the less in violation neutral limits would of itself be a nullity in the trian empire, that he had committed a political of the principles of international law, or the public eye of reason, and in the eye of justice, it is never offense against her authority, and that it he had faith, or of private right. $0 regarded unless the property falls under the ju- been found within the limits of that empire he It is true there is a distinction between power risdiction of a neutral Power, because the courts would have been subject to its jurisdiction, and and right. The seizure of Koszia on Tyrkish soil of a belligerent Power never act in opposition to doubtless would have been rightfully punishable was wrongful. If he had never formed any relathe political power of the Government, and they with death. But he had escaped from her terri- tions with another Government there would have never hesitate to condemn captured property sub- tories, and was, at the time he was arrested, upon been none to have vindicated his right; but would jected to their jurisdiction, without regard to the Turkish soil. The Austrian officials assumed the not the right have existed just as well under the place where the captures were made. And it is right to seize him within the jurisdiction of the laws of nature and the laws of nations, though this circumstance, and this alone, which has led Oitoman empire, and to employ force for the pur- | there had been none to vindicate it? According to the practice among all civilized' nations on the pose of carrying him back to the jurisdiction from to my notions, it would. I do not pretend to say
35TH CONG....1st Sess.
Bounty Land to Privateersmen—Mr. Davis.
HO. OF REPs.
293 161 .110
that we have not the power to punish; I do not former high position on that question, and taken Even in time of profound peace we are unable or mean to say that this would be a legal defense in a different attitude: It is known to all that Eng- unwilling to support a Navy sufficiently powerful a court of justice; but I do say that it is a reason land—that mighty Power upon whose possessions to secure respect, in some instances, for the flag; which should operate on the political department “the sun never sets;' " the tap of whose morn and I despair of seeing the regular Navy assume of the Government, and prevent any enforcementing drum, keeping company with the hours, cir the importance which the commerce of the counof the law under such circumstances.
cles the globe;'' England, who has made it her try and the rights of American citizens abroad Mr. LEITER. Then I understand the gentle boast that she was mistress of the seas; England, 1) would seem at all times to demand. In the China man to put himself on the great moral righi, and the jailor of the first Napoleon-thatshe, even she, seas, and at this moment, in the Gulf of Mexico, not on legal right.
has yielded to the pressure of that Power, and there is need of naval force. It seems to me, sir, Mr. TAYLOR, of Louisiana. Of course; upon consented, through her rulers, to become the po that it would be extremely disastrous for us to a right which addresses itself to the political de lice officer, the bailiff of the third Napoleon. occupy ground of hostility to the private-armed partment of the Government, and not to its courts. Now, sir, to my mind, if we pursue the course service. We have, I believe, between seventy and I do not mean to say that that would constitute a that has been begun; if we subject these men to eighty ships of all classes, not more than fifty of sufficient defense in a court of justice. I will ex the jurisdiction of our courts, and attempt to visit which are seaworthy. press no opinion on that point. But this I will them with punishment, under the circumstances Here is a tabular statement of the comparative say, it is a matter of such a character that it ap that have transpired, when the fact is known that il strength of the navies of the United States and peals to the political power, and that the political they were seized on a foreign soil, and brought Great Britain: power should be put in action by that considera- | by compulsion within our limits, I say we break United States Navy. tion, and arrest the trial. down the principle which has been heretofore con
of ressels. Of güns. Now, Mr. Chairman, I will proceed to present sidered as sacred. We establish a precedent
Sailing vessels.... what I consider will be likely to be the conse which will be imitated by every European despot, Steam tenders..... quences of an opposite course, of permitting this and we may expect to bave incursions of that Storeships..... trial to go on. I we exercise the power we pos- character made into our own country, and seizures
73 2,943 sess, and subject these men to trial, and, if found of that kind made upon our own soil of political guilty, to punishment; we place ourselves in a po- refugees; and if such circumstances should occur, sition which will lead to grave embarrassments in
Number Number such seizures should be made, with what face British Navy.
of ressels of guns. the future. It is only necessary for one to look could we take the attitude which we took when Sailing vessels..................
9,004 abroad, and see the present position of the world, the right of asylum was violated in the person of
7,009 to understand the importance, at this time, of pre- 1 Ray Would not our mouths be stopped with
Vessels for port service.... serving inviolate the great principle that, under the declaration: " But you cannot complain; you the law of nations, the soil of every country is to have set the example?".
18,284 be considered sacred. A person guilty of any of Mr. Chairman, I can see in the future unnumfense, whether against the moral or political laws bered evils growing out of persistence in this How utterly insignificant is our force, when of a country, if he escapes to another country, has course; and, for one, I shall myself protest, as I placed beside a fleet of more than eight hundred always been considered as having found an asy now do protest, against such a trial as without any national ships in the service of Great Britain, inlum; and there never has been, nor is there now, shadow of riglie, and as wrong in morals, wrong cluding her fleet of war steamers. Our immense any right acknowledged on the part of any country, in law, and dangerous in policy.
e frien sted, is
ODS ostrona i with
ucation, **Pests of
commercial marine would suffer in a war with any from whose jurisdiction the fugitive has escaped, I shall, therefore, at the earliest opportunity, important maritime power, and without privato reclaim him from the Power within whose limits when it is in order to move to suspend the rules, teers we should be driven from the face of the he has taken refuge, unless that right was con again seek the opportunity of presenting the same ocean. I have, sir, great faith in the privateers. ceded by a special compact-unless given by a resolution.
men, and hold that to signify that we will encourtreaty for the extradition of criminals, which was
age and support them in all legal adventure in time in force at the time of the commission of the of
BOUNTY LAND TO PRIVATEERSMEN, of war, is to take a step towards the continuance fense.
of peace. These men performed deeds of valor in We stand, with respect to the other nations of | REMARKS OF HON.T.DAVIS, the late war with Great Britain, that we are all the earth, in a peculiar position. This is a great
proud of. For this service they have received Republic. A large proportion of those Powers
nothing from the Government, while the seamen with which we have relations have systems of IN THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES,
in the regular naval service have received, not Government based on principles different from
May 25, 1858.
only prize-money equal to the privateersmen, perthose on which ours is based. We have refused
haps, but monthly wages and pensions, and, lastto make extradition treaties with other countries,
The House being in the Committee of the Whole on the
ly, bounty land. except with regard to particular classes of offenses.
The fact should be borne in mind that during We have never entered into general treaties of Mr. DAVIS said:
the whole time of the last war with England, the that character. It has been our aim to make our Mr. Chairman: It was my privilege to intro United States Government received double du. country an asylum for the oppressed of other na- duce in the last Congress a bill which proposed ties on prize goods brought in by the privateerstions; and it is our wish, as it is our duty, to pre to amend the bounty land act, so as to include men, which aided the Treasury materially, to say, serve American soil sacred from the intrusion of in its provisions men engaged on board private nothing about the heavy receipts in the shape of foreign Powers in pursuit of political offenders. armed vessels regularly commissioned by the Uni- charges. There are but few privateersmen of that Now, sir, what is the spectacle presented at ted States. It will be remembered that the bill
war left to enjoy our bounty, or the honor that it this day? We see the greatest military Power of passed the House by a decided vote. I regret to may be within our power to bestow, if Congress the enrih asserting rights unknown to the law of say that upon its reaching the Senate it was al should please to confer one or both of them; and nations; claiming to influence the action of neigh-lowed to die with the mass of unfinished business up to this day it is certain that the few are living boring States, so that they shall violate the great' without a word being uttered in its favor. I know without the honorable recognition of the Governprinciples of national law, and refuse the right of that this result was not consequent upon a feeling ment which profited so largely by their gallantry: asylum to those who flee from her jurisdiction to of hostility to the objects of the bill; nor do I re It is easy to call them freebooters, but it is unjust escape the pressure of tyranny. Do we not know gard it as indicative of indifference to the princi as well. It is easy to say that they grew rich that France has exerted her power over the Swiss ples involved in its passage. I have again intro out of their plunder, but impossible to prove it by Cantons? Do we not know that she has exerted, duced the bill for the benefit of privateersmen, facts and figures. A few owners may have been her power over the kingdom of Sardinia? Do we and I intend to follow, it, actuated by no other successful, but the seamen had no opportunity to not know that she has exerted her power, and with motive than that which begins and ends in a sense get rich in the private-armed service, and the fact success, over that country, kindred to ours, which of duty to a patriotic and praiseworthy class of should be understood. After allowing double du• has hitherto been the secure asylum of the op- citizens. As I have no arguments against the bill ties, United States marshals' fees, agents’charges
; pressed who fled from other States? Why, sir, to combat, I shall have no occasion to speak at and others, then the owners claimed one half of looking back upon the history of the past, is it not length upon the question now.
what remained, then the captain had ten shares
, known to all that the right of asylum was never
I endeavored, in a very plain manner, to pre and the subordinate officers a few shares less, and questioned among civilized States? Do we not sent my views in reference to the subject in the the seamen one share of one half of what the Gov. know that when military expeditions were headed | last Congress. I attempted to show that the Uni ernment left for the division. This, in almost all by persons who had taken refuge in France, for the ted States Government had encouraged privateer cases, was a miserable pittance, indeed; and if purpose of overthrowing the English Government, ing, and in all respects directed its affairs; that the expelling the then reigning monarch, and placing Government was a participant in the profits of the in commission, possibly the privateersmen would in his stead one who had become a refugee, no such business, and largely indebted to the system for right was ever claimed or asserted by England ? the success which attended and resulted from the
have preferred the service to the private-armed
service. It is convenient to save the public land, When those who invaded England, for the pur late war with England. I thought then, as I think
some of us believe; but it is far from being ecopose of reëstablishing the family of the Stuarts, now, that we have no reliable mode of assault and nomical to do so at the cost of ignoring the set escaped into France, they were safe; they found defense that is commensurate with the extent and vices of men who have periled everything to oba secure asylum. And has not England also been, ! importance of our maritime interests. I recognize tain and hold it. at all times, a secure asylum fór those fleeing from no system of warfare that is so consistent with
In the report which accompanied the bill for France? Yes, sir; but how long will she continue to our ideas of popular government as that which
the relief of privateersmen, some general facts are be so? Would she have been so to-day but for the grows out of the private-armed service; and my set forth to which I would invite the attention of resolution and firmness of the English people? Do experience here has convinced me that we shall
the members of this House. I shall call the aiwe not know that now, within the last few months, I never be able to subordinate that system to any ex tention of gentlemen to the subject at an early the English Government had descended from its tensive organization of the national marine force.
day by asking the House to pass the bill under.
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the operation of the previous question. This such unexampled rapidity that it has been re tions, and render them comparable with each other and being done will prove no hardship to anybody. garded as a marvel of progress. Never, in the his
with similar lines in other parts of the world, it is neces.
sary that the observed temperature in elevated positions The matter is easily understood, and the session tory of mankind, has such an empire arisen from
should be reduced to the level of the sea ; and in the conis so rapidly drawing to a close that I shall trust the wilderness as has grown up in the last decade struction of this map allowance has consequently been to the chance of getting a majority of votes for a upon the shores of the Pacific; and the living made for decreasing temperature of one degree for every measure that I feel certain would improve upon stream of population which has made this empire therefore, will present to the eye the lines along which the
three hundred and thirty-three feet of altitude. The map, discussion.
has poured across the continent upon that belt of temperature of the air would be equal for the periods menMy impression is that there can be not more territory known as the “ central route,” without tioned, were we to suppose the inountain ranges entirely than one thousand persons who can claim land aid or protection from the General Government,
removed and the air brought down to the level of the sea." under this bill. Originally there were about fif and indeed without a road except that which was
“ These lines, at a glance, exhibit re
markable curvatures, particularly in the western portion of teen thousand privateersmen; many have died, made by nature. More recently our armies have the United States, indicating a great increase of tempermany have received land for services rendered on marched across, and found no obstacle; even the ature in this region beyond that of the eastern and middle board Government ships at some time during the army of Colonel Johnston might have proceeded portion.” war, and hence are not entitled under the pend to its destination but for the destruction of the It may be fairly estimated, from this data, and ing bill. Those who would be entitled under the grass by the Mormons, and the artificial barricades from experience of travelers, that the highesi eleprovisions of this bill are scattered broadcast over with which they have defended the passes of the vations in the great mountain region on the line the country.
mountains. Where were the obstacles so much of the central route, do not give a greater degree
spoken of when these thousands of unprotected of cold in winter than is experienced in the New PACIFIC RAILROAD.
emigrants, without other food for their horses and England States. Shall it be said that any diffi
cattle than the natural forage of the country, its culties, by reason of cold or snow, can be found SPEECH OF HON. F. P. BLAIR, JR., 1 grasses, crossed these plains and the passes which in any part of New England to the construction
pierce its chains of mountains ? and why did they or operation of railroads? There are probably OF MISSOURI,
roll across the central route, in preference to the more railroads in successful operation in New IN THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES,
much vaunted routes on the thirty-fifth and thirty England than in any other part of the United
second parallels? Because they only wished to May 25, 1858.
States of similar exient. It is singular, but not accomplish their journey, and had no political less true, that the further north you go in the UniThe House being in the Committee of the Whole on the objects to accomplish.
ted States, and the more snow you encounter, the state of the Union
But it may be, and indeed has been, answered
more railroads you find. This may be accounted Mr. BLAIR said:
that those emigrants crossed the central route in for on different grounds, not necessary to mention Mr. Chairman: I have risen to offer my views the summer season; and that few have undertaken | here; but it is, nevertheless, a complete answer on what I conceive to be a subject of transcendant it in winter, when, as it is alleged, it is utterly to all the noise and nonsense we have heard about interest to the whole country, and especially to | impassable on account of snow. In comparing the impossibility of building and operating a railmy own constituents. I allude to the question of this route with those of the thirty-fifth and thirty: road upon the central route on account of snow a great continental railroad, from the Mississippi second parallels, it might be sufficient to reply that and cold. Away with this pretext! The snows valley to the Pacific ocean. And in the outset, no emigrant has passed over either of these routes of Russia, which overwhelmed Napoleon's victoI desire to meet an objection which is much in either in winter or summer; and the condemnation | rious army of five hundred thousand men, and sisted on by those even who hold themselves out would thus apply to all alike. But a better reply | annihilated his power in the hour of triumph, as the friends of this great work; but which, if is, that the summer season is the best for the over does not impede the railroad between Moscow and admitted, is fatal to any work which will fulfill the land journey; and for that reason the emigration St. Petersburgh; and, sir, it is idle and foolish to conditions of a continental railroad, in its broad selects that season, and the central as the best say that we shall not be able to find men both willand national sense, and compel us to content our route. The objection to this route on the ground ing and capable of constructing and operating a selves with a road sectional, and not national in that it is obstructed by snows has, however, been railroad on the great lines of commerce through its location, and which, whilst it will subserve the so industriously and persistently urged as to re our continent. repeat once more, that there is interests of that section of the country in which it quire some attention. I call the attention of the no physical obstruction, and none occasioned by is located, but little, if any, better than the transit House to the fact that the climate of the western the character of the climate, which makes the routes across the Central American isthmus; it part of this continent, like the western parts of the central route impracticable. But it is not to be dewill be useless to the country at large, and there continent of Europe, is much milder than that of nied that there is a great and formidable obstrucfore cannot in any sense be considered a national the eastern part. Italy, which is semi-tropical in | tion, and one which, for the present, I fear, is enterprise worthy of being undertaken by the Fed-1 its climate, is in the same latitude as New Eng- insurmountable. This formidable and only diffieral Government.
land; and the winter climate of Oregon, on the culty is the so-called Democratic organization, or The objection to which I refer, and which has Pacific, which is in the latitude of Maine, is as its representative, the present so-called Demobeen insisted upon so much by those who hold mild as the winter climate of the Carolinas on the cratic Administration. So long as this organizathemselves forth as the friends of a continental Atlantic. In forming a judgment, therefore, of tion is represented by an Administration--that road, is, that it is impracticable to construct a rail- | the climate of the mountain regions on the west is, so long as the so-called Democratic party is in road north of the thirty-fifth parallel of latitude, ern part of this continent, there are many circum- | power—this nation will have no continental railbetween the Mississippi river and the Pacific stances to be considered, and which must enter road. We might as well make up our minds to ocean;
and there are those who go so far as to as into our calculations, without which, our conclu this; and if we want such a road, we must first sert the impracticability of any route north of the sions will necessarily be erroneous.
put our hands to the work of breaking down this thirty-second parallel.
At this point I shall call the attention of the organization, driving it from power, and thus The alleged impracticability of any route north House to a map of the “ isothermal lines in North remove the only obstruction which prevents the of the lines I have named, is based upon the dir- | America, as determined by the Smithsonian Insti- | accomplishment of the greatest enterprise in the ficulties said to exist in the face of the country to tution, and published in the agricultural report world; which will enrich the nation beyond the be traversed, and the obstacles interposed by the of the Patent Office for 1856. Upon this map are
power of computation; which is to add to its climate. I hope to be able to dispose of both of marked, by lines stretching across the continent strength, and bind us to our sister States of the these objections in a way that will be entirely sat- from the Atlantic to the Pacific, the summer and Pacific with “ hooks of steel.” isfactory to the country, and to show that there winter climate and the climate of the whole year. I have said that the so-called Democratic party, is no natural obstacle, which may not be easily And it will be seen that the winter climate of the or Administration, was the obstruction, and the overcome, to the construction of a road which will thirty-third parallel of latitude on the Atlantic only one, to building a central and therefore a natraverse the center of the continent, upon a line corresponds with the winter climate of the thirty |tional highway to the Pacific ocean. I will make susceptible of settlement and cultivation through- sixth and thirty-seventh parallels of latitude of good my words by proofs. It is well known that out its whole extent, and which will equally ac the great mountain region of the western part a majority of the members of that party are hostile commodate the people of all sections of the Union, of the continent. The climate for the year of the on principle to the Pacific railroad, and their feeland thus fulfill every condition required to make thirty-seventh parallel at the mouth of the Ches- ing upon this subject may be gathered from Senit a great continental highway, which can justly apeake bay corresponds with the climate for the ator Mason, of Virginia, who said, the other day, claim the power of the nation for its construction. ) year of the forty-eighth parallel in the great moun in answer to a question of Mr. Gwin, that he I contend that there is no greater fallacy than tain region of the West; and the line which marks would rather lose California and our Pacific
posthe assertion that the line known as the central the winter climate of the thirty-seventh parallel sessions than sacrifice the principle upon which route is impracticable for a railroad, or, indeed, on the Atlantic strikes the Pacific at the forty- | he opposed the construction of the Pacific railroad. that any of the routes which have been spoken of ninth parallel and runs through the mountain Mr. Mason is one of the representative men of the in the last few years are
e impracticable. The asser region of the West from the forty-first to the southern party which dominates the Democratic tion originated doubtless in the rivalry between forty-ninth parallel. The summer climate of organization and gives it law. These men will the various routes proposed, and has been prop Charleston corresponds with the summer climate vote for no railroad to the Pacific which is not, in agated, as I shall show, unfairly by those whose of the western mountains in the forty-fourth par: || fact, a southern road; and some of them, I believe, duty it was to examine and report truthfully in allel of latitude. These lines, however, do not
will not even vote for a southern road, unless it regard to all. So far from its being true that there show the actual climate of the mountains, for that shall be built south of our territories, and in some is any natural obstacle which renders the central is modified by the elevation of the mountains
foreign country. Nor will they allow the party route impracticable, it is perfectly notorious that themselves. Professor Henry, in the memoir on with which they act to place itself in a position to from the time that a route to the Pacific became meteorology explanatory of this map, contained support any national road. a necessity it has been the only route which has in the same work and on page 483, speaking of Mr. WRIGHT, of Georgia. To what party been used. It was the route by which the emi these lines, says:
does the gentleman from Missouri refer, when he grants to Oregon reached that Territory; and by “ They do not, however, in all cases, exhibit the actual says that there is a party organized in this counit the golden State of California was peopled with temperature of the surface, for in order to show their rela
try to build a railroad through the southern sec
APPENDIX TO THE CONGRESSIONAL GLOBE.
[May 25, Ho. of Reps.
35TH CONG....st Sess.
Pacific Railroad - Mr. Blair.
tion of the country, and only through the south- wells are being bored for a supply of water, rec sas City, on the frontiers of Missouri, through the ern spation of the country?
ommend the route where those wells are neces Cochetope pass. I give the chapter and shall let Mr. BLUR. The gentlemandid not understand i sary, over the central route in which there has it speak for itself. It is illustrated by the map me. I said that the party to which the gentleman been found an ample supply for thirty thousand which I hold in my hand, and which has been belongs js opposed, upon principle, to the conei emigrants in one year, and the armies which have constructed with the greatest care and accuracy struction of any railroad, unless it should pass |, bera recently sent out to Utah.
by Colonel Frémont himself. through the southern part of the continent, and Why was it that an appropriation of $10,000,0001 The chapter is written in journal forin, the date very far south at that.
to purchase Arizona, appropriations to import the 14th of December, 1854, when he had passed Mr. WRIGHT, of Georgia. I understand that camels, lo bore artesian wells, and to print an end the great dividing line of the continent and surthe President of the United States put his reconi less series of the most costly books-books which mounted the greatest difficulty to be encountered mendation of that route upon the ground that it will cost, I understand, a million and a half or проп the whole route, and his review of the line was the best and the shortest route, and not be two million dollars--could be made during the from the Missouri border to the crest of the concause it was a southern route.
dominancy of the so-called Democracy, and no , tinent upon which he then slood, will strike every Mr. BLAIR. It is easy to find plausible grounds effort whatever made to find a line for the central one with its candor, power, and beauty. He says: for any recommendation, route afier the report of Gunnison was received?
" Wchad now crossed the inain dividing ridge, and, with Mr. WRIGHT, of Georgia. Does the gentle. The reason is transparent. It was not the object the first fall of snow, piiched our camp upon the Pacife man deny that it is the nearest and the best? of the Governmeni to find a central route; their
We had lelta comparatively pen country for one Mr. BLAIR. I deny that there is any route cffort was, and has been, and will continue to be,
thoroughly mountainous, 10 wliich the accident of dark and there at all which can be operated.
stormy weather lent a peculiarly rugged aspect. To our so long as the southern interest dommates the
eyes, as well as to our minds, the change was abrupt and The southern faction having the power of num-Government, to condemn that route, and carry impressive. Our animals were poor, and our provision, bers in the organization, force the candidates of the railroad, if made at all, to the extreme south bearly gone, and, in face of the rugged country and rugged their party to succumb to their views, and dictate ern verge of our territories. In further corfirm
season, our condition was by no means encouraging Be
hind in the country had been cheerful with sunshine, the absolutely its policy. In proof of this, we see that ation of this view, I instance the action of the
rare talling weather had been only autumn rains, and the whilst Mr. Buchanan was allowed to say he favored i present Government upon the overland mail route. country--grass-covered and entirely free from snow-had a Pacific railroad before the election, he comes out This mail was authorized by Congress upon the
inade traveling pleasant, and had given our animals the best in his message in favor of the thirty-second par- express understanding that the contractors should
chances for food which a hostile season could afford.
Abundance of game had kept the party in good health and allel, which is about equivalent to the route by the select the route upon which to carry the mail. good spirits. The face of the country had been remarkably isthmus; and, if rumor can be relied upon, he has The Postmaster General, with the sanction of the easy of travel, constituting, in its general cbaracter, an open made known in advance, to two Senators who | Cabinet and President, in violation of the express plain, broken up to the crest which we had just crossed went to see him in regard to the bill reported in terms of the law, refused to give the contract to
only by a single inountain range of singularly easy passage,
and our road, of nearly a thousand miles, had been genthe Senate, and which located the line along the any one unless the contractor would agree to carry erally along the level lands of streams. Probably another central route, his intention to veto the bill, and it on the route along the Mexican frontier on the thou-and reinained to be struggled over before we could his hostility to any except the route along the thirty-second parallel.
reach the western settlements, and winter had suddenly Mexican frontiers. Mr. Buchanan, like Mr. I assert again, in view of these facts, that it is
come down upon the country, driven off the game, and shut
us in with a narrow circle of falling snow. This afternoon Pierce, and like any other national Democrat who the Democratic organization, and its instruments a meager hour of faint sunshine lit up the snowy crests of may be President, is the creature of the majority in the Government, which constitute the only ob the mountains, and showed the multitudinous ridges, which of that organization which supports him in these | struction to a central Pacific railroad; and those now stretcli alınost uninterruptedly westward to the waves Halls, and will do their bidding at any cost. who desire to see this glorious work achieved
of the Pacific ocean.
“ The party had now crossed the summit-level of the When the surveys for a route for a Pacific must first displace this obstruction. I shall, there
continent, the highest point and most difficult which lie in railroad were ordered by Congress, it was under- | fore, propose that Congress should take from the way of the railroad line to the Pacific, and this is, therefore, stood, and indeed no such order would have been hands of the Executive, which has shown itself
the littest place in the journal for such brief summary of the made by Congress upon any other understanding, unworthy of confidence in this matter, all power,
facts which had been collected, so far as they go to vindi
cate the character of the country for railroad constructions, that the central route was to be surveyed by Col over the subject, and pass an act to build the Pa and its capacity to support population. onel Frémont, who, having passed over all the cific railroad between some central point in the “But, in this description of the country, and the obstacles different routes, had given his opinion in favor of | Mississippi valley and San Francisco, and name,
on the line over which the party traveled, it is not by any the central. But the Secretary of War declined to in the body of the act, commissioners who have
eans proposed to put it forward as the fit line for a rail
It was simply an exploring line-if, under the cirgive that employment to Colonel Frémont, on the the confidence of the nation, men having a com cumstances of adverse season and restricted means, it can ground, as I have understood, that he was not then petent and practical knowledge of railroad engi- properly be called so—which, in its general direction to the an officer of the United States Army. He, how-neering, to locate the road on the best and most mountain passes, was governed in choice of route by the ever, placed Mr. Stevens in charge of the survey practicable ground between the points named. The
protection ihat wooded streams afford in the occurrence of
ine sudden snow storms, which are dangerous on the open of the northern route, although he was not then, present Administration, and, indeed, any Admin plains. I believe, an officer of the Army. Captain Gun- istration dominated by the same influence, can “The region traversed under these circumstances lies nison was placed in charge of the survey of the not be trusted to the execution of this great work,
mainly beween the thirty-eighth and thirty-ninth parallels of
latitude, and extends from the mouth of the Kansas to the central route, but his instructions expressly lim- and therefore Congress should take the matter in
Cochetope pass, twelve degrees in longitude. By the travited him to a survey of a part of the route only; hand, and confide its execution to friendly and eled line, the whole distance to this point is eight hundred and this officer, without a previous knowledge of faithful hands.
and filly three miles, of which, eighi hundred was in the the country, or experience in railroad engineering, While, however, the pseudo Democracy,
valley of the Kansas, Arkansas, and Del Norte. But three
obstructions are encountered along the entire line; the made the most egregious blunders in the survey through its chiefs, under a malign influence, have prairie highlands between the Kansas and Arkansas rivers, of that part of the survey intrusted to him, as I betrayed the great interests of the nation, and the Wet Mountains range at the head of the Arkansas, and shall presently show, and reported it impractica- || striven to convert this great national work into a ihe Rocky Mountain range at the heads of the Del Norte ble. 'It is natural to suppose that renewed efforts sectional affair, happily for the nation there have
and Colorado. The distance traveled in the Kansas valley would have been made to find a practicable route been those who were prompted by the lofty mo
was about two hundred and fifty miles, along which the
average assent is less than three feet (two and three quar; on this line, which was the only one which ac tives of patriotism, and the love of an honorable ters) io the mile, and the country, for about iwo hundred commodated the entire people of the country. renown to give themselves to the task of achiev
miles, well wooded and beautifully fertile. At an elevaNothing of the sort, however, was attempted; it ing this great enterprise of a continental highway.
tion of one thousand tiree hundred and fifty feet above the
sea, the route left the Kansas to cross the prairie--uplands was condemned by the Government, and its con Among these, the youthful and intrepid Fremont, lying between it and the Arkansas, and which constitute demnation heralded as a triumph.
who, having led the way by an examination of the first obstructions. It reached the Arkansas at an elesa. But on the extreme southern routes a different | the whole region lying between the Mississippi tervening distance being about one hundred and fifty miles:
tion of two thousand six hundred and seventy feet, the inconduct was observed. When it was discovered | river and the Pacific, and opened up that vast The general rise of the country westward, between these that there did not exist a practicable route on the country to the astonished vision of the civilized two points, is about nine feet to the mile. In its course thirty-second parallel, within our territory, an world, and who, having added California to our over these plains, the route, for about eighty miles in a westembassador was sent immediately to Mexico to empire, determined, although no longer in the ser
erly direction, was upon streams tributary to the Arkansas. negotiate and purchase a strip of territory from vice of his country, to open the road to the empire
In crossing the uplands between these, the inclinations
were from twenty io forty feet in the mile-generally about that Republic, where it was supposed that a road won by his own valor. It was in the depth of one in two hundred-the summit land being generally from could be made, and Arizona was purchased for winter, and at his own expense, that he determined one to two hundred feet above the streams. These are $10,000,000. Finding that water was not to be to attempt this new labor, and encounter the perils
continuously wooded along their banks, and the soil good,
and their valleys well adapted to settlement. The high had to quench the thirst even of the Government and difficulties which attended the attempt to pass plains entirely bare of timber, are covered with good grasses, parties sent there to explore, a military command through hostile tribes of Indians with an insuffi and were occupied, in November, by multitudes of buffalo, and a topographical officer have been detained cient escort and scanty provisions for subsistence. which find there abundant pasturage. The buffalo soinethere ever since, to bore artesian wells in order But the attempt was made, and with success. The
times winter on these plains. to overcome this difficulty, and ships have been result was then given to the world. He had nei
“Up the Arkansas to the mouth of the Huerfano, the dis
tance traveled was two hundred and thirty miles, the aver: sent to Asia and Africa to buy camels and import ther the time nor the means of working out the age fall of river for one hundred and forty of that distance them for the purpose of traversing the sandy des. observations then made so laboriously and pain- being less than seven feet; and thence to the mouth of the erts in these southern parallels, thirty-two and fully, but has since completed his calculations, thirty-five. It is said that water has been dis for the purpose of publication-not, however, at
miles of the lower part of the route, the river was nearly des
titute of timber; the remaining one hundred and fifty iniles covered by means of the wells, and that the camels | the expense of the Government. The intrinsic it was abundantly wooded for selvements, soil good, and have been successful in traveling ten days with value of the work renders it unnecessary to resort grasses for pasturage abundant. The lluerfano at its mouth
is out water. The fact that the camels can endure to such a plan, and enables him to find a publisher.
four thousand three hundred and seventy-five fret above the ten days thirst will hardly invite to the country From this work, now almost ready for the press,
sea, and at its head-waters in the Wet Mountains about nine in which such endurance was imposed upon them, Colonel Frémont has allowed me to use a chapter, ed, and grass-covered valley, which makes an admirably
thousand. The course is in a broad, open-lying, well-woodthe people necessary to build and mainiain a rail in which he sums up the results of his labors on unobstructed approach directly into the mountain passés: road, nor will the circumstance that artesian that portion of the line which extends from Kan-ll highlands, in which mountain spurs terminate. From