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General by order of Congress, readvertised for and, with some modifications, a bill was passed to build four costs $16,800 per voyage. I have also shown that proposals for this very service, the adyertisement

war steamers, to which there was an amendment, author-
izing the Secretary of the Navy to contract with us, in con-

to make the round voyage from Liverpool to New made since the giving of this extra compensation, formity to our proposal to the Postmaster General.

York direct, as made by the Collins live, costs the advertisement ordered by Congress with ref- When we proposed to carry the mails, we intended, in $9,800 more than to make the voyage from Live erence to the notice to discontinue the extra pay, good faith, to perform that service; and whether we have the advertisement made in the New York papers,

erpool to Boston, via Halifux, as made by the or not your Department must judge. When my proposi

Cunard line. tion was first made, the average time of the steainers from and which must then have been seen by the gen- | Liverpool to Boston, was fifteen days and six hours, equal

I have established the faet that Collins, with tleman now so anxious to underbid Mr. Collins, to at least sixteen days to New York; and I did not sup. ordinary steamers and in ordinary time, can perand yet not a single proposition for this service pose that the service could be performed with less than five form the mail service between New York and Livwas then made to the Post Office Department

steamers, to insure the regular transmission of the mails,
which is so essential to commerce and revenue of the Gov-

erpool at the price paid by the British Government under that advertisement. Where then were Mr. ernment; nor could that service of twenty trips, as called

to the Cunard line, or as low or lower than any Vanderbilt and Mr. Hansen? Sir, there is a mys- for in the original contract, have been performed with less offer now made by persons desiring contracts for tery connected with these propositions, and I think

than five ships of two thousand tons each. But, by our in- that service, I have the key that will explain it. Mr. Vander

creased size and speed, we have not only been enabled to
make our passages in the average time of a little over eleven

I have shown, by facts and figures, that there bilt's agent has repeatedly urged me to give a days, the cost of which, over that of the time taken as was no cause existing in 1852, demanding the favorable consideration to Mr. Vanderbilt's prop- herein slated by the English steamers, is more than doubled, extra compensation then given, which does not osition, but at the same time, has been careful to but we are enabled to make twenty-six, instead of iwenty

exist at this time in much stronger force. let me know that Vanderbilt was a friend to Mr.

voyages per annum, as at first contemplated.
As soon as it was known that our Government had con-

I have demonstrated that, by the act of 1852, Collins, and would withdraw any proposition, tracted with us, no pains were spared in England to deride the faith of the nation was pledged to continue the provided Mr. Collins would purchase a steamer the idea that Ainerica could build ocean steamers; and extra pay to Mr. Collins during the continuance which Vanderbilt has nearly ready for service.

never was British influence more exerted to defeat the in

of the contract, unless Congress should be conterest of her great maritime rival than in their endeavors to These offers, sir, are buy-out offers. But these vanquish our line. We knew and felt, when we com

vinced that the service could be performed at the gentlemen are mistaken in their man when they menced building our vessels, that, to silence English clamor, speed required, and in such vessels as Collins suppose they can frighten Mr. Collins into black and to bave the stars and stripes fout untarnished, we must has built, in accordance with the requirements of mail.

do more than England had done; and we believe that the Mr. Chairman, I have before said that the world now acknowledges that the trident of the seas is

the Government, without loss to himself and his

associates, at the price stipulated in the original Collins steamers were designed by our Govern- After unceasing efforts of several months, owing to the contract. ment in their construction to be adapted to war

discredit which had been thrown on ocean steamers by the I maintain then, Mr. Chairman, that the amendpurposes; as illustrating this fact, as well as to steamers that had been built in this country, it was with great difficulty that we got subscribed a little over a million

ment which I propose should be agreed to, and show the difficulties encountered and overcome

of dollars; and, although our company advertised in almost that the extra compensation should be continued by Mr. Collins in establishing his line, I must be every large cily in our country for additional subscribers, to Mr. Collins, unless we determine wo abandon permitted to call the attention of this committee to before and after we got the increased pay for the service, our original policy of maintaining such mail steama late correspondence between him and the Post

not a single share was taken, although every exertion was
made to get new subscribers, to lessen the indebtedness of

ers as, at any time, can be converted into vessels master General. The letter of Mr. Collins is the company, which, as yet, remains nearly one million

of war. characteristic of the man. It manifests a national and a half. But, fortunately, the original subscribers to Sir, should we adopt the latter policy, we are pride, and an American feeling, which contrasts the stock were men who had full as much regard for the bound in good faith lo put an end to ihese contracts beautifully with the selfish motives manifested by pride of the nation as for their own interests. They left

me untrammeled with but one edict, which was,

that you

altogether, and to purchase from our ocean mail those who are now sending us propositions for the MUST NOT MAKE A FAILURE, IF YOU RISK EVERY DOLLAR.

steamer companies, such vessels as have been appurpose of extorting hush-money from Mr. Col- Does history produce as much devotion to country's honor proved and accepted by the Secretary of the Navy. lins. by any other men? I think not. As before remarked, it

Such a policy, sir, must lead to the disposal of The following is the letter of the Postmaster

was necessary to do more than England had done; and, in
so doing, we built four ships of much greater tonnage and

these noble steamers to some foreign Power. For General, and the reply of Mr. Collins. I will power than our competitors, by which means we are en- our Government to take these vessels and keep thank the Clerk to read them.

abled to perform the service with three ships, and have them afloat, unemployed in our mail service, would Post OFFICE DEPARTMENT, January 24, 1854. always a spare ship in port; but the cost of keeping that

cost us untold millions of dollars.

The policy spare ship is near $150,000 per annum. SIR : Please state wbether you employ more than four The ships of our line are the Atlantic, Pacific, Arctic,

would be found so ruinous as to lead to its quick ships, viz : the Ailantic, Pacific, Arctic, and Baltic, for the and Baltic. We have at command the most essential part abandonment. I repeat, then, the declaration, service on your line between New York and Liverpool. of the frame of the fifth ship, which the honorable Secre- that the policy would lead to the disposal of these

I am requested by the chairinan of the Comunittee of tary Graham did not deem necessary to be built at present,
Ways and Means, of the House of Representatives, to in- remarking that we had better wait to see what improve-

steamers to some foreign nation. The Governform himn of the number employed. nuents our rivals would make.

ment can end these contracts, and sell these vessels I am, respectfully, your obedient servant,

As many attempts have been made recently to throw dis. without loss, for, sir, such steamers as these are JAMES CAMPBELL.

credit on mail steamers for war purposes, I beg leave to now in demand in Europe. Other Powers will be E. K. COLLINS, Esq., New York and Liverpool United

state, that the cost of ours was greatly enhanced to build States Mail Steamship Company, New York. them suitable for that purpose, and that all our plans were

glad to purchase them. Mr. Coliins has, again submitted to, and approved by the Navy Department; and I

and again, been importuned to dispose of them, New York AND LIVERPOOL U. 8. M. S. S. Co.,

am not aware that a similar course has been pursued by but his answer uniformly has been they are 56 WALL STREET, New YORK, January 27, 1654. any other contractors or their assigns,

national dessels.

I am at any time prepared to prove, that up to this time Sir: With much pleasure do I reply to your letter of 241h, the equal or our four steamers has not been built for war

Now, then, Mr. Chairman, is this the time to in answer to your inquiries as to the number of ships em- or peace purposes, in or out of the Navy; and it would let these noble steamers go into the hands of any ployed to carry the United States mails between this and afford me much pleasure to appear before the Committee of other Government? Would the people of the Liverpool. As this information is especially desired for Ways and Means to convince them of what I have herein

United States tolerate their Representatives in perthe honorable Committee of Ways and Means of the flouse stated. Yours, respectfully,

E. K. COLLINS. of Representatives, I beg you will pardon me for communi

mitting these vessels, so justly the pride and boast To the Hon. James CAMPBELL, Postmaster General. cating some facts in relation to our mail steamers,

of the whole country, to pass into the possession After the law passed authorizing the Postmaster General Mr. Chairman, I have endeavored, truthfully of any foreign Power, where, perchance, they to make contracts for trans-Auantic mail steamers, he ad- and fairly, to place before this committee the con- might we turned against the United States ? vertised, for several months, for proposals for carrying the mails for five years, to which we inade no offer, knowing, as

clusions which I have arrived at as the result of In the present condition of Europe, where all is we did, that we could not get capitalists to incur the great the thorough investigation which I have given the war or “ rumors of war,” and where the utmost outlay for that term of service, which would be necessary subject.

jealousy and feverish excitement prevails towards to build suitable steamers for the two fold object of war and mail stcarners. (The clause requiring that all mail steamers

I think I have established, beyond all contro- our Government, shall we permit these steamers should be built suitable for war purposes, so that they might, versy, that our

Government, following the exam- to pass into the possession of England, France, at alınost a moment's notice, be converted into war steamers, ple of Great Britain, in our contracts with our or Spain, knowing, as we do, that they could was inserted at my instance, after the bill had passed a sec- ocean mail steamer companies, has looked to the ond reading in ihe Senate.)

sweep our coasts from the Bay of Fundy to the The Postmaster General

construction and the maintenance of such vessels pported to Congress that he had accepted the offer of Mr.

Gulf of Mexico, unchecked by any and all the Mills; and that, we supposed, was the finale of that service.

as, upon any sudden emergency, could be con- naval force which our Government could bring to * Having business in Washington, with the Treasury Depart

verted into efficient and available vessels of war. bear upon them? Should this be permitted, we ment, I called to pay my respects to Mr. Hobbie, then the have no hesitation in affirming that I have may well exclaim, in the language of my friend First Assistant Postmaster General, who had long known the importance I had attached to the establishment of mail

established the fact that, in the vessels belonging from Illinois, (Mr. Richardson,] "Adieu dear steamers. lle expressed bis astonishment at not having

to the Collins line, we have the very best steamers Cuba." received from me a proposition to carry the mails. I gave that ever navigated the ocean--such as fully anhim iny reasons, as hereinbefore stated; he replied that the swer the designs and expectations of the GovernPostmaster General would like to see me. I arranged with

OCEAN MAIL SERVICE. Mr. II: to call on the Postmaster General ; which arrange

ment. mnents were complied with. After a somewhat lengihy

I have demonstrated, by the very highest scieninterview, he desired ne (as you will see on reference to tific and naval authority, the practicability of con

SPEECH OF HON. JOHN KERR, mny letters in the Department) to make a proposal to carry verting these steamers into efficient vessels of war.

OF NORTH CAROLINA, the mails between New York and Liverpool, and, at the sarbe üme, to state in writing why Liverpool should be

I have also demonstrated that the revenue IN THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES, adopted as the terminis in Europe; wbich letter is also in arising from the mail service performed by the the Department. Sometime after iny proposals were made, Collins line, has been steadily and constantly

February 16, 1855. I called on the Postmaster General, 10 know what the Govincreasing

The House being in the Committee of the Whole erucnt had concluded to do. His reply was, that, as he could not recommend any further special mail' service, the

I have also established the fact that it costs the

on the state of the Union Adininistration would have the naval war steamer bill, then Collins line $12,000 more to make the trip to Liv. Mr. KERR said: before Congress, for ten war steamers, reduced to half its erpool and back than it did before Congress gave Mr. Chairman: I labor under great embarrassnumber, and that our steamers would be considered as subthe company the extra compensation.

ment and difficulty in rising to address the comstiinted for those taken from the bill. As soon as this was communicated to the chairman of the Naval Coinmittee, as

I have also demonstrated chat the extra speed of miliee this morning. The impatience already the wish of the Administration, they readily assented to it; the Collins line over that made by the Cunard line, manifested here has been quite sufficient to induce 330 CONG....20 Sess.

Ocean Mail Service-Mr. Kerr.

Ho. OF REPs.

an apprehension, at least, upon my part, if not to the Collins line has not only been equal to that for Tarsus, from whose eyes, we are told, the scales produce an absolute conviction that the time I may which they stipulated, but has been more. suddenly fell as he was journeying to Damascus. consume would be more valued even by the friends Mr. OLDS.' I have before me the report made I would that not only the gentleman from Ohio, of this measure than any argument I may be able to the British Parliament in 1852, from which we but also the gentleman from Virginia, and all to adduce in support of it.

see that the British Government pays the Cunard others who are opposing this great American en. I should not, in the present condition of my line £188,000, while they only receive from them terprise, could have the scales taken from their voice, and in view of the anxiety I see exhibited in the way of postage £120,000. They pay eyes. They would then see the object in its proper here to take final action upon the bill, undertake | £822,390 per annum for all their mail steamship light, and their patriotism would cause them to to debate it at all, except for the reason that I oc- || service, and only receive in return £479,600 – || support it. cupy a position in regard to it, at home, somewhat showing an excess of expenditures over receipts, But then the gentleman should have remembered peculiar. I feel it, however, no less my duty than in our currency, of $1,713,950.

that the course now pursued by the honorable my privilege to make known to those whom I Mr. SMITH. The Cunard line make weekly gentleman from Ohio is not without the sanction have the honor to represent upon this floor, the trips, while the Collins line only make semi- of precedent in the action of this House. Sir, it reasons by which I am governed in casting my monthly trips.

is within the memory of all of us that at the last vote to sustain the Collins line of steamers against Mr. GOODE. The Collins line only make session of Congress, the gentleman from Alabama all the competition to which they are subjected. twenty-six trips each year, while the Cunard line (Mr. Harris) proposed to give additional comLike my friend from Virginia, (Mr. Letcher,] make fifty-two.

pensation to certain mail carriers from MontgomI represent a plain, rural, (and I will superadd) Mr. CÚTTING. Four steamers of the Cunard ery, in Alabama, I believe, to Mobile, in the same sensible and patriotic people. They have very line do not perform the same service as the steam- State. The persons to whom I allude had a prior little acquaintance with the great commerical ers of the Collins line, by the difference between contract, which had expired; and a joint resolu. marts of the world, and they have comparatively Boston, and New York, and in coaling at Halifax, tion was introduced proposing to dispense with little connection with the commercial operations | where fuel is cheaper than at New York.

the usual forms of bidding, and to give them a new of our country, and it is by no means a task of the Mr. KERR. Those are not the points upon contract, at the compensation, I believe, of some greatest facility to satisfy them that it is a just which I base my support of the bill. Therefore I $60,000. It was made known to the House at the policy on the part of the Government to give to do not care to go into these matters of detail, even time that a responsible man had offered to do the one company a sum exceeding $800,000 for trans- it I had the time to do so. I again say that here same service for a considerably less sum. It was, porting the foreign mails, when another individual || is a great national contest between England on the however, urged here that this company in Monthas offered to perform the same service for a much one hand, and my own country on the other—a gomery had provided itself with stage-coaches, less sum. This, I say, requires explanation to contest which owes its inception to a Democratic and with stock; that it had made an immense outsuch constituents as the gentleman from Virginia administration of the Government. It subse- || lay, and that good faith required that they should and myself represent. But, nevertheless, I trust quently received the sanction of a Whig adminis- have the contract at the larger amount of compenI shall never be found capable of with holding my tration. It has, therefore, been sanctioned by those sation. We resisted it in some quarters of the support from any measure which, in my judg- who represent the two great parties of our coun- House. Many of us could not see anything in ment, I regard as just, from any apprehension of try, and by consequence by the people themselves; that case which justified such a departure from the consequences at home. However, in this case, I and having been adopted and continued under such uniform practice of the Post Office Department; confess I have no disturbing fears. I have not auspices, and having been so eminently success- but we were voted down by a large majority of the slightest apprehension that I shall be com- ful, I do not care if it costs this Government twice the House, and I think my friend from Virginia plained of by my constituents for voting for the or thrice the amount they have to pay for it, I will voted with the majority. At least his vote is so amendment which the gentleman from Ohio, (Mr. || still vote to sustain it. I have, I trust, too much recorded upon the Journal. Olds,] chairman of the Committee on the Post of the spirit of our fathers in me to talk about Mr. LETCHER. Which friend from Vir. Office and Post Roads, has submitted.

money when a contest is pending between this coun- | ginia ? Sir, I came into life about the period of our last try and England for supremacy on the seas. We Mr. KERR. I referred to the gentleman over war with England, and the first tidings which ever have won the victory. "We have the palm in our the way, (Mr. Smith.) greeted my ears were those of the glorious tri. hands. The note of triumph has gone up from Mr. LETCHER. Because I recollect distinctly umph of our Navy upon the ocean. From my our shores, and now, even now, we are called on to that I voted against the bill to which he alludes. youth to the present time, I have looked with | do just what the British Government, above all Mr. KERR. I have no doubt the gentleman intense anxiety to the growth of our commercial other things in the world, would have us do- did. I never knew him to vote $60,000 when he marine, and the augmentation of our Navy. I re- || withdraw the aid of our own Governmen from our could get the work done for $20,000. But, sir, if gard the Navy as the right arm of our defense in own people, and to permit her to snatch from us the the gentleman from Virginia (Mr. Smith) and war, and as the chief support of our extended and || trident of the seas.

the House were justified in the course they purstill extending commerce in peace.

Sir, this is not a question of dollars and cents sued in reference to that precedent, how much Surely no gentleman upon this floor, whatever | merely. It is a question of national pride and honor. more are we justified in sustaining the Collins may be his opinion in regard to the proposition The Postmaster General published proposals for company, who have done so much for the common now pending, will dispute the fact that the owners carrying the mails between this country and Eng. | good of the country, while the undertaking of the of the Collins line of mail steamers have achieved | land. There were no bidders except the Messrs. Montgomery company was a private job, in nowise as proud a triumph, in their contest with Great Collins. They took the contract. They encoun- connected with the general welfare more than every Britain, as was ever achieved in a contest between tered all that was to be dreaded in the outset of other mail contract. We heard no complaints then American and British skill and enterprise. The such an enterprise-the want of knowledge and of a lavish expenditure of the public treasure; we contest has been one marked by every feature || practical skill without which it would be impos- heard no murmurs; we heard of no appeals to which distinguishes England, and her offspring, sible to be ultimately very successful. They over- public indignation. It was all right; it was justi. America. Each has had its national pride excited || came all difficulty in this undertaking. They have | fied by principles of sound policy; and let me say to the highest point. Each has in turn triumphed, perfected themselves in the knowledge necessary that it was sought by some to be justified upon the and each is aiming now to get the mastery of the to win and secure the triumph; and I regard them same principle upon which the friends of this measseas. England has been defeated in the contest to as having done all that they have done upon the ure now justify'it. which I now refer; and in the moment of our tri- || invitation of our Government. I put it, then, to Mr. Chairman, I regard the measure we are umph, at a time when those who achieved this great every gentleman in this committee io say whether now considering as involving a question of good advantage to our country are about to reap there- the Government can be regarded as keeping good faith on the part of the United States; and, looking ward of their patriotic services, we are called upon faith with this company if, when they have achieved at it in that light, whatever potency other considto take from them the contract which the Govern- what they have done, for a paltry consideration of erations might have, nothing that I can possibly ment has given them, and from the fulfillment of dollars and cents wedeprive them of all the advant- || conceive, nothing that I can imagine, will induce which on their part we have derived so much ! ages which they are now likely to reap from their me to aid in violating a contract, the breach of national advantage, and put it into the hands of skill and enterprise, and transfer them io others? If which involves a breach of the public faith. I others whose skill is unknown, whose efforts have the facts which have been published to the world speak not of a breach of contract, in the strict been hitherto untried, and who, in all human in all quarters are to be relied on, these Collins legal sense. I am aware that the right is reserved probability, if they were to get this contract at the steamers have heretofore, and till within a very to the Post Office Department to give the notice lowest bid, would, before they terminated it, ask short time, made no profit from their undertaking. now proposed by the bill, and terminate the conan augmentation of pay. Such I believe would | They are just now beginning to reap some remu. tract for extra service and extra pay. The Messrs. be the fact; for it is not only a general but almost neration for their skill, and for all they have done Collins would still retain the right to carry the a universal rule, for the Government employees, for the good and the glory of the country. I be- mails, under the original contract, and would, I who underbid others, to ask for extra pay to per- hold in the rivalry of the Cunard and the Collins | apprehend, be required to do so; at all events they form their contracts, and they generally obtain it. lines of mail steamers a contest between England could be required so to do. The effect would be

Mr. SMITH, of Virginia. I suppose that the and America. It has now undoubtedly assumed to depress their energies, and, perhaps, ruin their gentleman understands that the Collins line of that most important and imposing aspect. For fortunes; and thus give their adversaries of the steamers receive double the money that the Cu- one, I own my sympathies are enlisted on the side Cunard line the victory over them in a noble connard line do, for the same amount of service. of my own country, and such is the force of my | test, in which they have been induced to engage

Mr. KERR. The gentleman cannot have un- partiality for my own country, that I am willing by the assurance of our suppor-an assurance derstood me in any such way, no more than ! to sacrifice dollars and cents rather than mortify || implied in all that has been done for them heretounderstood the facts of this case to be as he stated national pride by giving the victory to England. | fore, and fully merited on their part by the emithem. If correctly informed, I believe the Cunard The gentleman from Virginia (Mr. Smitu) has nent success which has crowned their efforts. line gets more than our line does. I believe that; reproached the gentleman from Ohio with a change Mr. SMITH, of Virginia. I hope the gentlein proportion to the service which they render, of his opinions upon this subject since the last ses- man from North Carolina will allow me to make they get more. I believe the service rendered by sion of Congress. He compared him to Saul of an explanation ?

330 Cong....20 Sess.

Ocean Mail Service-Mr. Kerr.

Ho. OF Reps.

Mr. KERR. Certainly.

injury to my own countrymen. In my opinion There was none of that violent plunging, that sudden check Mr. SMITH. I understand-for I was unable there is quite as much of feeling as of interest in

usually tending a large ship in a heavy head sea. The elon

gated bow dipped, gently in when a vast, wall-sided, and. to hear the gentleman distinctly-that the gentle | the opposition to this measure, a feeling of hos- ihreatening swell appeared overwhelmingly to rush upon man from North Carolina has hunted up a vote of tility to everything which seems, even in the re- her. The whole forelength of the vessel appeared to sink mine, given at the last session, in favor of allowing motest degree, to savor of protection to American

gently down until almost level with the water, and as grad$20,000 in addition to the regular mail pay, to a enterprise, and American industry.

ually to rise again after passing. Most wondrous of all, no

sea ever came on board, and the foaming and angry waters certain company in Alabama, and produced it for There is a party in this country-albeit as pa- appeared to glide harmlessly past her peak and narrow the purpose of convicting me of inconsistency. triotic and bonest as any party in any, country- bows. The extraordinary difference in this respect to the Mr. KERR. Oh no, sir. who, in my judgment, have permitted them

America was most marked, as a very ordinary head sea Mr. SMITH. Then I misunderstood the gen

would dash angrily, and with huge volumes, over her bows. selves to be swayed too much by this feeling.

I attribute these adinirable qualities to two reasons: First, tleman.

1, on the contrary, whether rightfully or wrong- the long and gently graduated bow; and, secondly, the lightMr. KERR. The gentleman from Virginia | fully, have always sympathized with my own ness and bouyancy of the fore part of the vessel, when would surely not do me the injustice to suppose countrymen; I have always believed that this relieved from the bowsprit. This bowsprit, in the Cuoard

line, projects considerably from the bow, and its weight is that I would hunt up anything to convict him of Government was designed for the benefit of our

greatly aggravated by the leverage caused by its projection. inconsistency?

people and that as we have to bear its burdens, as I am not aware of its exact weight, but it inust be enormMr. SMITH. Only to prove my inconsistency. we have to furnish the sinews of war to maintain ous, particularly at the extremity. The most experienced There is nothing wrong in that. that Government in the elevated position of pre

sailor would be very much deceived in forining a judgment

of the sea going qualities of the Cunard and Collins steamMr. KERR. "That word " hunting up" might || eminence which it now occupies, we, its own citi

ships from a mere outside inspection: and I acknowledge imply something, upon my part, of malice afore- zens, are entitled to its fostering care and the

that, at first, I could not conceive the Collins line to be so thought, which I utterly disclaim. But the gentle || benefits of its protection. And whilst I would safe and easy in a sea as the Cunard line. From a considman will allow me to say that I did not allude to not grant protection as a meré matter of bounty, erable experience in all classes of steam vessels, besides

the Cunard America, ( advisedly assert thai the Baltic is his vote with any purpose of involving him in the (I have never been in favor of that and never ex

out and out, by long odds, the very best and easiest steamcharge of inconsistency. My only purpose was pect to be,) yet, when public service has to be ship I ever sailed in. to show that there was a case to be found, accord- rendered, or public burdens have to be imposed, I "I cannot refrain from calling the attention of steamship

builders of England to the uselessness, and even absurdity, ing to which, even in the judgment of the gentle- am always ready so to shape and direct the meas.

of a heavy bowsprit upon a vessel that mainly depends upon man from Virginia, the Government might prop- ures for those ends as to give incidental advantage

her steam. It would be considered an absolute absurdity erly give the larger rather than the smaller sum to my own countrymen. This, I think, is emi. for either of these vessels to attempt to beat to windward. for the same service. nently proper in the present case.

Before the wind, there is lille doubt that the Collins Mr. SMITH.

would run the Cunard out of sight in a dozen hours. The I do not suppose the gentleman Sir, the ships of the Collins line are the very

vast and heavy bowsprit of the Cunard line is therefore an has made the allusion in any unfriendly spirit. finest in the world. They have been constructed absolute excrescence; a bow-plunging, speed-stopping, When the gentleman introduces arguments to show | under the superintendence of an intelligent officer money spending, and absurd acquiescence in old-fashioned the propriety of this measure, which he is anxious of our Navy; they are approved by Captain prejudices about appearance, and what the old school atto support, it is very natural for him to resort to Lynch and the gallant Commodore Perry, who,

iempt to swamp all argument by condemning as not ship

shape. Pshaw! whai confounded stuff! This is the sort precedents. But the gentleman's reference in this to his claims upon our admiration and confidence of feeling that prevents improvements, and allows Brother particular instance, it seems to me, is very un- arising out of his general merits and long service, Jonathan to build the finest sea-going steamers in the world, happy-very unfortunate. In that case,

the con-
has recently added the brilliant negotiations in

which the Collins liners undoubtedly arc.

“As some slight proof of this assertion, it me describe tractors proved that they had increased the service | Japan.

what took place in the Baltic, on the 6th and 7th of Novemunder pledges made by the Post Office Depart- But, sir, my pride of country is greatly inflamed ber, 1852, on the passage to England, in about latitude 48° ment—that Congress would make up the defi- when I read the following high but just tribute to north, longitude 18° west. At ten a. m., on the former day, ciency by an additional appropriation. I did vote the superiority of the ships from the pen of a

this vessel was proceeding with full power, at the rate of

thirteen knots, the engines making sixteen revolutions per for that bill. I voted for it merely as an act of Captain in the British Navy.

minute. At this time a slight breeze was blowing from ihe justice. I voted for it then, and I would vote for “ On arriving at New York, I took a passage in the southwest, with a slight swell from the eastward About it now.

Baltic, for which I paid $120, about £24, and now proceed noon the swell increased, and a very dense, dark, coppery Mr. BRECKINRIDGE. I dislike very much to give a description of that vessel.

sky was perceived at the starboard bow, bearing southeast.

"The American steamship Baltic, belonging to the Collins The barometer, which had been carefully noted, had been to interrupt the gentleman from North Carolina;

line, was built by Jacob Bell, of New York, at a cost of gradually sinking for thirty-six hours, but still the southbut I rise to a question of order. These remarks $710,000, equal in round numbers to £142,000. She is west wind ever and anon breathed hoarsely into and filled are not pertinent to the proposition under consid- bark rigged, and can spread about the same quantity of the flapping canvass. The stormy indications in the southeration. canvas as an ordinary sloop of war.

east gradually increased in intensity as we rushed forward

* Her dimensions are as follows: Length on deck, nearly at the great velocity before described, namely, thirteen Mr. KERR. Of course they are not. I yielded the same as keel, 283 feet; breadth, 45 feet; depth, 32 feet; knots. Altwo p. m., the barometer-that faithful and valto the gentleman as a matter of courtesy, and I tonnage, 2,733; scathing, 20; inches in the ihroat; 9 inches wable monitor-sank considerably. Captain Comstock, am not, therefore, liable to the charge of departing

at the plank sheer. She is fastened with diagonal iron the experienced commander, invited me into his cabin, and

braces throughout, and has three decks below the spar deck. began to discuss the now clear indications of an approachfrom the proposition under consideration. But,

With 1,100 tons of coal, 60 tons of freight, and full com- ing storm. From the various signs afforded by changes in Mr. Chairman, I confess that I am not able to plement of passengers and baggage, she draws about 22 the direct on of the wind, swell of ocean, descending glass, perceive the distinction for which the gentleman

feet. She can accommodate 167 first class passengers, and and other infallible tokens, known only to experienced

38 second class. contends. The gentleman from Virginia bases

scanen, we speedily caine to the conclusion that ihe Baltic

“She is fitted with two side lever engines, 96 inch cylin- was approaching the course of an Auantic cyclone. From his support of the bill to which I have referred

der, and ten feet stroke, and the entire cost of engines and the position of the vessel and her rapid motion, we muta. upon the ground that the contractors had performed boilers was $250,000, equal 10 £50,000.

ally agreed that the easterly breeze which had suddenly set better service ihan they originally contracted for.

“Her average consumplion of fuel is 80 tons per day; in, clearly indicated that we were rapidly approaching the Well, sir, how does that differ from the present

her coals averaging 165. 6d. a ton in England, and 185.611. northern edge of the cyclone This will be plainly under

in America; and she daily lightens 31 inches. Diameter of stood by the landsman and uninitiated, when I explain that case? The very ground upon which the advocates

her water-wheels, 35 feel; levgih oi buckets, 12 feet, width the cyclones in the northern hemisphere revolve against the of the proposition we are now considering place 20 inches; number of buckets to each wheel, 32 ; diameter sun with a progressive motion towards the southeast. The their support, is that we shall get better service of paddle-shaft in the bearing, 23 inches.

tasterly breeze, therefore, could only strike the ship in its

"In smooth water the wheels average 15 revolutions. Her northern extremity. If she had been, for instance, at the than anybody else can render; because it will be

average steam for the last year, 15 inches; limit permitted southern extremity of the rotatory storm, it is clear that the rendered by men of more experience and better by the company, 18 inchies: but it is seldom reached at sea, wiod would have been southwest until the vortex was qualified than any others. But, I will not take up as the cylinders consume the steam faster than it can be passed, when the southeastern course of the circular or the time of the commitlee further upon this poini.

produced. The highest speed ever made at sea is 15 knots whirlwind storm would have struck the ship. Mr. Chairman, another objection which I have

per hour, and the least last winter, for 24 hours, 167 nauti- “Although we were confidepiibat our theory was correct,

ca. miles. None of the vessels of this line have been calked yet Captain Comstock, like a prudeni, careful, and able to this attempt to deprive the Collins company outside since they were launched, or were ever hove-o at commander, as he is, made every preparation to withstand of their right is this: If I understand the prop

sea from stress of weather. Three thousand pounds, or the worst weather. At this time the barometer bad sunk osition insisted upon by the otherside, it is simply

$15,000, nre expended to supply passengers and crew for lower than I ever experienced, (28 40,) «ven in the most

one voyage to England and back. Wines and liquors are furious storms, and the gyratory motion of the toriured and to terminate by notice, so much of the contract

not included in this expenditure, and are a matter ot'accoin- fragmented clouds in the southeast showed, to the practiced existing with this company as applies to the modation to the passengers, as no profit is made, only a eyes of the seaman, that a fearful war of the elements extra pay, and for the extra trips. We have no sufficient advance upon prime cost to cover losses from was going on in that direction. The castem swell was

breakage, &c. The officers of the ship are charged same now rapidly rising into a beavy and perpendicular sided power to go beyond that; we have stipulated

as passengers. I can answer for the cheapness and good- sea, whose solid looking curly iops threatened destruction with them in reference to their original under- ness of these articles from my own experience.

to all that opposed their headlong course. The wind liketaking, and we cannot deprive the company of ** The usual charge for passengers is £30 from England, wise increased in strength, urging on the ton willing waves, that contract. By voting this notice, Collins & Co. and £24 from America-the return trip being thus consid- until they were lashed into apparent destructive fury. would be still enabled to receive $385,000 a year,

erably cheaper. It is usual to give the waiter that attends “Letis ascend the bridge, between the paddle-boxes, and

at table ten shillings, and likewise the bed-room attendants; try to describe this subline scene. A furious gale was and the Government could not deprive them of it. the stewardess who attends ladies at same rate. The offi raging, and wind and waves combined were hurled with The effect of this notice would therefore only be to cers mess together; there are likewise separate messes for gigantic force against the poor Ballic. To avoid rushing cripple them in their operations, and give the Cu

the engineers, sailors, stokers, and coal-irimmers, so that madly against the fierce watery barriers, the engines were

they do not interfere with each other. The three latter slacked to nine revolutions, and the brave vessel still held nard line the advantage, as I have already stated.

classes bave fresh meat in the morning and at noon, and ber course at the rate of cight knots. Although the heavy We will have Mr. Vanderbilt for example, and salt pork and beef for supper. The firemen and coal-irim- spoondrift in a moment drenched everything exposed, still Mr. Hansen, or whatever his name may be, con- mers, in consequence of the severity of the work, have the ship held on with the most extraordinary ease. At intending, not with the Cunard line, for they would

supplies of provisions set out for them all night. The offi- tervals a mountain would appear approaching giving the be then evidently in the ascendant; but the con

cers and men are in two watches, and careful logs are kept idea (often felt by the most experienced) of a gathering both in the sailing and engine departments.

power in advance that nothing could withstand. Onward flict would be between our own people; it would “I am only doing justice to those magnificent vessels in it rolls, so high that from your clevated position the horizon be an illustration of the old fable of the Lion and stating that ihey are, beyond any competition, the finest, is concealed-it is upon us with a crash-nothing can Unicorn fighting for the crown, and the Cunard

the fastest, and the best sea boats in the world. I am sorry avoid the avalanche of water-the decks are inundated fore line would realize all the advantages from such an

to be obliged to say this; but, as a naval officer, I feel bound and aft. Not at all; the ship rises gently, just sufficient

in candor to admit their great superiority. Their extraor- to clear the crest of the surge; her bulwarks are even with unnatural contest. Now, for one, I cannot give | dinary easiness in a sea cannot fail to excite the admi- the surface of rolling water, but not a drop comes in. Again my sanction to a policy fraught with so much ration of a sailor; and I never beheld anything like it. apd agaio did this bappen; and although we were drenched report to Congress, and his letter of the 15th of November last to the Secretary of the Navy, commencing said ia

330 CONG....2n Sess.

Ocean Mail Service-Mr. Breckinridge.

Ho. OF Reps.

to the skin by the spoondrift, we were fascinated by the Mr. Chairman, I have already endeavored, | sonal remarks touching either members of the wonderiai triumph of the ship's course over the madly

feebly, I admit, to appeal to the sense of justice of House or any of the gentlemen connected with vexed waters, and remained in our exposed situation speilbound at her easy performance over such rough and form

the House, and to its regard for plighted faith. ] this mail steamer line. I think that if Congress, idable obstacles. Place a Cunard liner, or any vessel, in now appeal to its patriotism. Task gentlemen if instead of confining itself to the discharge of its this position with the present lives of English ocean steam- they are willing to see Great Britain retain the appropriate legitimate duties, chooses to embark ers, and they would ship tons and tons of water. The heavy bows, bowsprit aud all, would plunge into the sea

hold she has had upon the commercial trident of in contracts and jobs, Mr. Collins and his asse with a craslı and a bang that would shake and strain a ship

the world? I ask if they are willing to see the ciales, and every other citizen, have a perfect right to her center. On raising her fort foot from her watery whole commerce of the country cast down at the to come here and consume the time of this House batlı, the buwsprit, enveloped with the gear, would visibly feet of the British Government, and to make us in quarreling among themselves as to who shall bend with the jerk. This is the main difference between

dependent on Great Britain not only for carrying get ihe best bargain. I attach no blame whatever the ocean steamers of England and America, and we strongly advise the builders of England to wake up from

the mails, but for protecting the other great and to them. I intend-to use the language of the their lethargy, half composed of prejudice. I tell them inestimable commercial interests of the country? | distinguished gentleman from Miesouri (Mr. Beragain plainly, however unpleasanrio mysell, that there are

To oppose the Collins line now is not according ton]—10 substitute, before I am done, some nu occan steamers in England comparable with the Baltic. “ It is the fashion in England, amongst a certain class,

to the maxims which I learned in early life. I figures of arithmetic for the figures of rhetoric unbappily tvo numerous, to shake their noddles when think it is preeminently the destiny of our country which have been so lavishly expended on this these steamers are mentioned. 'Oh,' say they, these to take the lead of the world in commercial enter- subject; and if I can get the attention of my friend steamers are all to pieces ; they will be done up in a short

prise. A few years ago, comparatively—but few from North Carolina, (Mr. KERR,) who has just time; they won't pay.' I beg to disabuse their minds-the minds of all persons in England who have not had such an

in the history of the world—and we were a weak, taken his seat, I hope to be able to satisfy him opportunity is mine to judge for themselves. These steam and almost a despised people. We had no com- that he has not given this subject the investigation ers are as good and as strong as ever; they are as well offi- merce, we had but few ships. Under the benign which it deserved at his hands. I think I will be cered and manued as any ships afloat; they treat their pas.

influence of what I regard as the true American able to show that there has been no breach of faith sengers with as much or more civiliti and attention tan any other line; and, finally, their food and wine, and all

policy-that policy which gives the preference to on the part of the Government towards the Col. arrangements of the table, (at least in the Baltic,) are as our own citizens above all others—in our com- lins company; and that none is involved in the good as any person can require, even is spoiled by ihe Sy. mercial regulations, behold the result! If not bill reported by the Committee of Ways and barite luxuries of the great metropolitan cities of the world.

the very first Power of the world, certainly we are Means. Let me, for the purpose of getting a clear “ The last day's steaming of this beautiful vessel was the absolute poetry of motion. Authrie o'clock, p. mn., she was

among the first. Our commerce extends to all statement of the proposition before the House, off the western extremity of Ireland, exactly three hun- seas and all oceans. There is no portion of the advert to the history of this transaction. dred miles from the light vessel, at the entrance of Liver- inhabited globe where our people have not pene- In the year 1847 Mr. Collins and his associates pool harbor. The weather was beautiful, a light breeze from the northeast, just sufficient to ruffle slighuy the glass

trated. Our canvas floats in the breeze in all proposed to carry the mails of the United States like surface of the water. Onwards she rushed with head- latitudes and longitudes, and the richest resources between New York and Liverpool, twenty trips long speed, her ponderous engines revolving at ille rate of of the world are at our command. Inspired by annually, at the sum of $19,250 the round trip, nineteen revolutions a minute So clear and beautiful was

such reflections, I delight to contemplate the in- in vessels capable of being converted, at small her shape, that she appeared 10 glide through the water, leaving haruly a ripple bebind. Numerous steam vessels

creasing glory of my country. Her citizens are cost, and in a short time, into war steamers of the likewise running up the Irish Channel, were passed as if no longer oppressed with a sense of inferiority in first class. At that time, I believe, the Cunard line at anchor, and, in twenty-two and a half hours from mak- any respect. They can turn to her history, and was in operation. Mr. Collins and his associates ing the land on the previous afternoon, she had achieved

its pages are illustrated by the triumph of her were business men in the city of New York. the three hundred miles that separated her from her home. " Reader, this is a wonderful performance, and what I

arms in every conflict which she has been called They obtained the contract at their own price, and fear cannot be rivaled by any English vessel at present. to encounter, either on earth or ocean, and espe- on their own terms. It was to exist for ten years. The whole thing is obvious to the meanest understanding, cially may they exult in her superiority in nautical The company went on performing the service, at and may clearly be traced to the unequaled beauty of the

skill and enterprise. We may repair to the ocean, twenty trips annually, until 1852, when they came model. The English engines are allowed by the Americans to be superior. Why, therefore, should we allow and

to Congress and said, “We must have an increase; Brother Jonathan to beat us on our own element? The

“Far as the breeze can bear the billows foam, we propose to increase the trips to twenty-six reason is plain enough, and patent to the whole world, and

Survey our empire and behold our home;"

annually, instead of twenty, and we ask $33,000 is summed up briefly in one sentence: The British inodel

These are our realms--no limit to their sway, per trip, instead of $19,250." is far inferior to the American. I say this in sorrow and

Our plug the sceptre-all who meet obey.

Mr. KERR. I ask the gentleman from Ken. jealousiy, and investigate calmly and dispassionately this momentous question. When once inquiry is thorougbly

But our greatest struggle is now pending. It | tucky if that proposition did not come first from aroused in England, I do not fear the result. If, however, sa contest ior the commerce of the East. Eng. || the Post Office Department? obstinacy and pride are allowed to blind our ship-builders, and, by her steam marine, is endeavoring to Mr. BRECKINRIDGE. Why, sir, the conthey will richiy merit the late that will inevitably befali

establish a line of rapid communication with the them, namely, to be soundiy beaten by the American laval

tract was never made with the Post Office Departarchitect.

East Indies. But support the policy which I am ment, but with the Secretary of the Navy. “We arrived at Liverpool in ten days and a half from New now advocating; sustain the enterprise which has Mr. KERR. No, sir. Mr. Hall proposed that * York, during which tune the engines were never slupped, given us, so far, the advantage in this contest and not the slightest accident happened.”

the company should increase the number of trips, with England, and who can doubt that, in a few and he said he should recommend that there should It will thus be seen that Captain McKennon years, we shall have a route to the East Indies by be a pro rata increase of compensation. declares that they are better for war purposes, the Isthmus of Panama, and the Pacific, which in Mr. HAVEN. If the gentleman from Kenas well as to weather storms, than the Cunaru

every respect is preferable to the one from South- | Lucky will allow me, I will make a statement on ships. What more, then, can we ask than that ampton by way of Alexandria?

this particular point of the case. while we are deriving from them such great com- Mr. Chairman, I have spoken with very great Mr. BRECKINRIDGE. With pleasure. mercial advantages, we are, at the same time, re- difficulty of voice; I would be glad indeed if I had Mr. HAVEN. It was a conditional arrangealizing the benefits of a policy which makes the

time to say more.

But I will conclude with one ment which was made between the Postmaster arts of peace eminently conducive to our success observation more; and that is, whether I am sus. General and Mr. Collins. It was, that Mr. Col. in war? By the use of these steamers we bring tained or not by this House, and by the people, lins might run these additional trips and stand his commercial enterprise into subordination to the I am the decided, unwavering advocate of Amer || chance in Congress of getting additional compen. great end of maintaining the preëminence of our ican enterprise and industry, against all competi- | sation. If Congress gave it, very well; if not, he country in its conflicts with the nations of the Lion, and especially against the competition of our was to close his mouth and make no claim on the earth upon the ocean; and such a policy can hardly ancient enemy, whose policy it has ever been to Post Office Department. be too highly appreciated. It promises the most oppress us; and who has ever been able to carry Mr. BRECKINRIDGE. Very well. Mr. brilliant results in the future. If peace continues, it out that policy with more success than any other | Collins proposed to make six additional trips in insures our highest success in commercial adven- | nation.

the year, and to take his chance of getting intures; if war unhappily occurs, we are prepared

creased compensation from Congress; yet his apat the very moment of its outbreak to convert


plication to Congress was not for additional comthese inagnificent steamers into war vessels of the

pensation in proportion to the increase of service, very best description. England has already with. drawn some of the Cunard ships from the mail SPEECH OF J. C. BRECKINRIDGE, which would have been $19,250 for each of the

twenty-six trips, but he asked, and after a severe service, and dispatched them to aid in the siege


struggle, obtained the enormous sum of $33,000 a of Sebastopol. "And, Mr. Chairman, I can but


trip, including as well the twenty contained in his remember that just before these Collins steamers were built, we had driven the British packets

February 16, 1855.

contract, as the six afterwards added. Congress, from the trade between this country and Europe.

The House being in the Committee of the Whole however, did not intend to bind the Goveri.ment Our enterprising countrymen had vanquished on the state of the Union

to this arrangement for the whole period of the

contract with Collins & Co. The power was reour great adversaries in that contest. The Mr. BRECKINRIDGE said:

served to terminate it upon certain conditions, and Cunard line was established by the British Gov- The duty of taking part in this debate has been to prove this I desire to call the attention of the ernment in order to regain the advontages thus thrown upon mé unexpectedly, and I do not enter committee to the language of the act increasing lost, and that Cunard line had hardly begun to upon it with the preparation which the question the compensation of this line. (Act to supply perform the office for which it was designed, when, deserves; I am comforted on this point, however, | deficiencies for the fiscal year ending 30th June, true to their instinctive devotion to the interests when I observe the loose manner in which the | 1852, approved July 21, 1852:) and to the honor of our country, our high-spirited discussion is managed by some gentlemen on the countrymen engaged in a like enterprise. What other side. This bill was precipitated on the com- portation of the United States mail between New York

“For additional compensation for increasing the transever may have been the mortification on the part || mittee yesterday. The chairman of the Commit- and Liverpool, in the Collins line of steameri, 10 tiventy-six of England at her defeat in the first contest, it has tee of Ways and Means was taken sick, and he Irips per annum, at such iimes as shall be directed by the been immensely augmented by her signal failure has requested me to take charge of the measure.

Postmaster General, and in conformity to his last annual to contend successfully with the Collins line. I desire to discuss it without any in vidious per

331 CONG....20 Sess.

Ocean Mail Service-Mr. Breckinridge.

Ho. of REPS.

creased service on the first day of January, 1852, at the rate appeals to our prejudices about “ British compe- from his report made by him to the Secretary of of $33,000 per trip, in lieu of the present allowance, the

tition," uttered with a view to sustain a system the Navy. sum of $336,500: Provided, That it shall be in the power of

of Government bounties, are wholly unsupported Mr. BRECKINRIDGE. But here is another Congress at any time afier the 31st day of December, 1851, to terminate the arrangement for the addilional allocance by facts.

report, and if I cannot get advantage of the witherein provided for, upon giving six months' notice."

Can gentlemen be serious when they talk about ness, I can at least neutralize him. He says: The committee will not-fail to observe that while this system being necessary to enable American “ The mail steamers of the contracts of Howland & As. the act professes to appropriate only for the in- | enterprise to compete with British enterprise upon pinwall, of George Law, and of E. K. Collitis, can be easily creased service, (being six irips,) it actually gives the ocean? But if you enter upon this course of

converted into war steamers for temporary service, in casca nearly double the contract price for the original policy at all, do you want to pay them double

of particular emergency; but the cost of converting them

to war purposes would be large, and in no respect would twenty trips. Sir, strange and indefensible pro- bounty? Is it nécessary to give these extraordi- they be so economical, or in any way equal to vessels built ceedings are clothed in surange and misleading 'nary gratuities to enable the steam marine of this expressly for Government service; nor should they, in my language. country to compete with the steam marine of other opinion, iniertere in the least with the organization and

gradual increase of an efficient and permanent steam But the power to cut off the bounty, upon countries? In the remarks which I had the honor

Navy,notice, was reserved, and gentlemen who were to make at the time the additional allowance was here at that time know that the act would not

Chief Engineer Haswell, in a report made in given to Collins & Co., I inserted an official report have passed without the proviso. Well, Collins from the Secretary of the Treasury of the United April

, 1850, stated that

“ With a large majority of these commercial ocean steam& Co. got the increase, a large part of which was. States, exhibiting the condition of the internal and

crs, the proportions, capacities, and construction of their mere bounty. No one can now deny that a stip- external steam marine of the United States, and of

hulls, and the design and arrangement of their engines and ulation was inserted in the act by which Con- the internal and external steam marine of Great boilers, are such as to render them incapable of etlicionit gress should have the power, upon giving six Britain. What is the result? Why, the external

and economical war service, without incurring an expend

iture, in alterations and loss of time, that would pot, exempt months' notice, to terminate the arrangement for steain marine alone of the United States, exceeds

in cases of national emergency, be at all repaid by the ullithe additional allowance; and yet gentlemen say, both the external and internal steam marine of male durability of the buils of the vessels, in their ready in proposing, under that reserved power, to term- Great Britain by many thousands of tons! What transfer to, or their economical performance of, actual serinate the arrangement, that Congress is guilty of a made it so? Sir, it was the spur of sharp compe

vice." breach of faith! The bounty to that line in 1852tition, and not the favors of the Government in

Commodore Skinner also says: was carried here after a very hard struggle, and the shape of appropriations. These seventeen “They cannot be converted into war steamers without we were upon the eve of embarking in a system proposals were put to sleep in the struggle upon

great expense, and then they would be inferior to those

designed solely for that purpose. of Government patronage to commercial steam granting an increase of pay to the Collins line, lines which would have involved the expenditure which left but six steam lines in special connec

There is much other official testimony of the of countless millions of dollars, and would have tion with the Government, three of them being former Secretary of the Navy, Mr. Preston, (!0

same character. I have also the testimony of a fastened the carrying trade of this country upon foreign, and three coastwise and domestic. the public Treasury. I had the honor at that time The sober second thought of the country conse

whom Commodore Perry made his report,) in

which he says: to make a speech in opposition to the increase of | quent upon the discussions then, and upon the pay to the Collins line, and I had a table prepared manner in which Congress was continually assailed

“ After a careful consideration of this subject, I cannot

withhold the expression of an opinion adverse to embarking of the new propositions then before Congress. by these steam monopolies for increase of pay pro- any further in ihe proposed union of public and private There were seventeen new proposals to establish duced a change of policy, as indicated by the vote means in this system of ocean steamers as calculated to Government commercial lines (nearly all of them of this House at the last session of Congress. promote the interest of the Navy." containing the plausible pretext of the war clause) | This House, by quite a decided majority, voted to Mr. Preston proceeds to enforce these views at from the principal ports of this country to almost | terminate the bounty to Collins by giving six | length, and with great power; and, in a subsequent all the ports of the world. The bounty to Collins | months' notice, as we had reserved the right to do. report, made in June, 1850, to the Committee on was the entering wedge of all these propositions, At the same time a resolution passed this body | the Post Office and Post Roads of the Senate, the and it was the only one of the whole brood that directing the Postmaster General, Attorney Gen- same officer remarks: suryived the conflict. If they had been adopted, eral, and the head of some other Department to in 66 The opinions heretofore expressed have been confirmed it would have involved an expenditure, for ocean vestigate and determine whether we might in good by the experience of the last year; to which I have but 10 mail service alone, of more than double the whole faith terminate the mail arrangements which we

add, ibat, so far as the contracts conteinplated a union with

the naval force of the country, and an improvement in the cost of our interior mail service, and we should had made with other lines, thus indicating that efficiency of our naval power, they have not and will not have been paying to commercial companies out the policy of the Government was to put a stop to

prove beneficial," of the public Treasury for the transportation of the system. Both, however, fell at the close of The material is abundant, but my time is inocean mailş more than double the sum which the the last session in the Senate, because the Sena- | sufficient to give the proofs. whole interior mail service costs this Govern- tor from New York (Mr. SEWARD] took the Aoor Can the gentleman produce one report favorable ment. What would have been the result in other at the last hour, and exhibited a purpose to speak to his view from Mr. Preston, Secretary of the respects? Why, under the pretext of getting a until the expiration of the session. When the Navy under Mr. Fiilmore; can he bring a recomconvertible steam navy, you would have formed same proposition is now offered which we voted mendation from the present able Secretary of the an extensive commercial alliance between the on at the last session, a rally is made not only for Navy; can he bring recommendations from any Government and private companies; you would the purpose of retaining the extra pay to the Col. officers of credit and standing in the Navy of the have given an unnatural, and, therefore, unprofit- lins line, but also to enable him to build another United States, favorable to the much vaunted war able direction to commercial pursuits; these Gov. ship. What is the cause of it? Why are we to clause in these contracts? No, sir; the testimony ernment companies supported by your subsidies, turn our backs upon our action of the last session ? | is patched-up, and outside testimony picked up and being the protected interest in navigation, Are we to go into this system again? Are we to from chance quarters, and wanting in every elewould have driven private commerce from the build up a commercial navy under the pretense ment to make it the basis of legislation. It remains chief thoroughfares of trade; and to complete the that it will be useful in time of war? The gentle- to be seen whether the influence of a private cominjustice of the whole proceeding, you would have man from Onio, (Mr. Olds,) in his speech yester- pany can overcome these proofs. collected the capital subscribed by taxation, from | day, said it was ihe policy of this country to have Sir, shall Congress, in the face of the facts that the people who were to be oppressed by the mo- these lines engaged in commerce during time of the British Government has, to a great extent, nopolies.

peace, and drawing their subsidies from the Gov- | abandoned this theory of a commercial steam My friend from North Carolina, and other gen- eroment, that we might have them ready as war navy-that our official testimony is, that these tlemen, have said that it was necessary to give the steamers in case of a conflict with other Powers. steamers cannot be converted into war steamersbounty originally, and to keep it up now in order I stop here a inoment to state, and try to show that we originally paid this line more than the Britto prevent the British Government from driving that the war clause is an unmitigated humbug. It ish Government paid their line, and that now the us from the seas by the support they afford the will be remembered that the British Government British competition is nearly nominal, shall we, Cunard line. On this point I refer these gentle- had, also, commercial lines with a war clause in the in view of all these facts upon the humbug of the men to some facts which, I hope, will relieve their contracts. She had lines of side-wheel steamers, war clause, continue to pay an enormous gratuity patriotic anxiety, and put the case on its true with sharp bows and sterns, constructed like ours, to Collins & Co., above the terms of their congrounds. In 1852, when the question of the chiefly for passengers, freight, and speed, and tract-a gratuity of itself almost equal to the bounty was before Congress, I made the following which could not carry a heavy battery. When she largest sum England ever paid for mail service to statement, which, I think, was not denied at the

came to test those steamers, under a parliamentary | the Cunard steamers ? I put it to the commontime, and will not now be denied:

examination, she found they were notat all adapted sense of the House. “By the British Constitution all moneys expended upon

for war steamers, and she is now constructing Sir, there are two dangers to be feared here. the mail or naval service must be appropriated by Parlia- screw steamers expressly for the Navy. While You have a number of these steamers, with war ment. A register of these appropriations, made every year, we adopt her errors let us adopt some of her wise. clauses in their contracts, already running from exhibits the amounts annually appropriated to the different lines. The London Times of March 12, 1852, contains a precautions.

one port to another in our own country, and to complete table of the ocean mail service of that country for Commodore Perry's name has been brought in ports of foreign countries. One danger is, that the years 1851-52 and 1852-'53, which was compiled from here to strengthen this case. But I have the testi- || ihe owners of these steamship lines will make a parliamentary report, and is probably accurate. [For mony of Commodore Perry that these vessels can application to Congress to take ihe vessels off their table see next column.) “It will be seen that the compensation of the Cunard

only be used for temporary purposes, and that hands and terminate the contracts. I see symplons company, instead of being increased in proportion to the they would not be in any respect equal to steamers of that already. That would put an end to the sysincrease of their trips, in the most dangerous portion of the built expressly for war purposes. I do not know tem, but you would do it by requiring the Gove year, has been actually diminished from $17,500 per trip to about 310,000, and that this amount is all that the Cunard

where gentlemen get their evidence of Commodore ernment to take, at a heavy cost, under the name line receired from the English Government. The amount

Perry from, but I have before me an extract from of war steamers, vessels which were not originely now paid by our Government to the Collins line is $19,250 his official report made in 1852. war purposes, and which have been a trip; the amount proposed to be paid is $33,000 a trip." Mr. OLDS. I will say to the gentleman that shaken and shattered by the winds and waves of

This is official and uncontradicted, while the what I read of Commodore Perry's opinion was ll the ocean.

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