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to the injuries stated in the Declaration of Inde
Tuesday, January 23. pendence and to our present situation, they will Mr. MUMFORD presented a petition of sundry find that our present corresponds with our then inhabitants of the State of New York, to the situation in almost every point. Great Britain same effect with a petition presented yesterday bas refused her assent to an equitable settlement from sundry other inhabitants of the said State. of our differences; she has refused atonement for Referred to the committee appointed yesterday the affair of the Chesapeake; she has cut up our on the petition aforesaid. trade with all parts of the world ; she has plun- A Message was received from the President of dered our seamen, ravaged our coast, and de, the United States, transmitting an account of the stroyed the lives of our people; she has constrained contingent expenses of Government for the year our fellow-citizens taken captive on the high seas 1809. to bear arms against their fellow-citizens, to be- A message from the Senate informed the House come instruments of oppression on their own that the Senate bave passed a bill, entitled "An people and of the violation of our commercial act authorizing the fitting out, officering, and rights; she has excited or attempted to excite the manning, the frigates belonging to the United people of this country against their own Govern- States," io which they desire the concurrence of ment. In every stage of these oppressions we this House. have sought redress, by negotiation, in the most humble manner. The cup of humiliation is filled
JOHN THOMPSON. to the brim. The world knows it-you must not Mr. Johnson, from the Committee of Claims, shut your eys against the fact, that you have no made a report on the petition of John Thompalternative, bui an abandonment of the ocean son, referred on the second instant; which was and submission to Great Britain, or the protec- read, and referred to a Committee of the whole tion of our rights by force. Before you submit, House on Friday next. The report is as follows: burn your Declaration of Independence, tear down That, from documents accompanying the said petition, the emblems of liberty which adorn this splendid and seeming upon the face of them to be correct and hall, and trample them under foot, that they may authentic, it appears that the petitioner was a captain not exist to reproach us with a departure from in the Revolutionary war, and belonged to a regiment the spirit of our fathers. I wish that the spirits commanded by Colonel Hazen, called “ the Congress's of the departed heroes could rise in this assembly own regiment;" that after he had served as captain in the during the discussion of this question. If they said regiment,“with honor and reputation," for aboutone had addressed you, would they tell you of your year, he entered as a colonel into the service of Pennweakness, or appeal to your fears by proclaiming sylvania, to defend that State against the Indian incuryour inability to protect your rights? They sions, having previously solicited and obtained from would banish such idle stuff from this hall.
Major General Sullivan leave to retire from the Army, What does the Declaration of Independence on account partly of bis ill state of health, but princitell you? That you have a riglit to establish pally because his proper rank had been withheld from commerce. Britain tells you that you have not
him ; that in recruiting and for the pay and subsistence a right, and you are at issue on one of the great the petitioner expended considerable sums of money,
of his company in the said Congressional regiment, principles of freedom. Does not your Declara
which your committee are convinced have never been tion of Independence declare: " That as free and fully reimbursed to him: and that, from two accounts independent States they have full power to levy made out by Edward Chinn, paymaster to the regiwar, conclude peace, contract alliances, establishment, one during the war, and the other in the year commerce and to do all other acts and things 1788, and from a letter written in 1809, by Mr. Nourse, which independent Slates may of right do ?" | the Register, it is manifest that the petitioner's account Britain says we have not the power and what has never been finally adjusted. are we about to do? To submit; for this bill is The petitioner has exhibited an account showing a submission. Before we submit, let us make one balance of two thousand six hundred and twenty-nine effort at least to preserve the independence of our dollars and five cents in his favor against the United country; let us take the advice of Hercules to the States; which account, together with the vouchers supcarter: Whip thy horses, set thy shoulders to porting it, the committee have attentively investigated. the wheel, and then call upon Hercules.” Let Every item in the account is established to the entire us set our shoulders to the wheel; and, if we can
satisfaction of the committee, except the charge of three not protect our rights, then and not till then, let hundred and forty-three dollars and thirteen cents, for os fold our arms and call upon Hercules.
the pay of the company in the month of August, 1777. Mr. Dana observed that, although opposed to The embarrassing and difficult situation of the regithe bill, he should vote against postponement,
ment in relation to the enemy in that month, is offered cause of the embarrassment and fluctuation such able to produce a regular pay-roll in support of the
by Captain Thompson as the cause of his not being a course would produce in mercantile transac-charge or particular item aliuded to. Let this item bo tions.
stricken from the account, and then it appears that the The question was taken on postponement and United States are indebted to the indigent petitioner negatived.
in the sum of two thousand two hundred, and eighty Mr. GARDENIER assigned reasons why he deemed five dollars and ninety-two cents ; but by the several it proper to vote for the bill. When he concluded, resolves and statutes of limitation passed by Congress, an adjournment was called for and carried, and his claim, in the cye of the law, is satisfied. The the House adjourned.
petitioner, however, alleges that, in his case, the prinH. OF R.
American Navigation Act.
ciples of equity ought to control the rigor of the law, the same privileges under this bill as registered because he endeavors to prove, and has indeed satisfied vessels. the committee, that the settlement of his account with- Mr. Hale spoke against the bill. in the time limited by law, was prevented by cireum. Mr. Macon said, he had spoken so often in the stances not within his power.
Committee of the whole House on the bill. as The letter of the Register already referred to, and well of the principles which it contained, as on his certificate thereto suhjoined, show that the petion. the detail, that he regretted to be under the neer attended in person, and also by Mr. Nourse, his cessity of again speaking, but observations bad agent, at the office of the Commissioner of Army Ac- been made, which compelled him to do it; be counts, in New York, for the purpose of getting his promised, however, thai this should be the last account settled, but that an adjustment of it did not time he should address the House on the ques. not take place in consequence of "some difficulty” |tion, and that he would endeavor to keep as clear arising out of the unsettled situation of the accounts of Lieutenant Colonel Antil, of the aforesaid regi
as possible of the arguments heretofore delivered. ment. To obviate this difficulty, the petitioner states be in a worse situation ihan it has beed. If it be
It is no question now, sir, whether the nation that he had made unremitting efforts for the liquida- in a worse situation, that situation has been protion of his account with Edward Chinn, the paymaster of the regiment; presuming that if he could succeed duced by the upjust acts of Great Britain and in this, his account would then be admitted by the agent France, neither of which can with truth charge of the United States. It appears, as well from the the nation or its Government with partiality for said letter of Mr. Nourse, as from the petitioner's rep- the other. France pays no regard to her treats resentations, that his efforts were fruitless, and that with us, and Great Britain attacked the frigate Chinn not only refused or neglected to make a com- Chesa peake, and impresses our seamen; put these plete statement or settlement of the petitioner's ac- out of the list of wrongs done us by them, and count, but the petitioner moreover alleges that he was there is no difference in their conduct towards us. unable in due time to obtain from him such papers as The true question then for us to decide is, what were deemed indispensable for its adjustment: Chinn ought to be done in the present state of the courdied; the statute of limitations began to operate, nnd try, and of the two great belligerents of Europe? here the subject rests.
If we mean to continue at peace with both, there In reporting in this, as in all other cases, the com- can be no doubt but we ought honestly to endezmittee consider themselves bound by the law of the vor to do that, which shall be right as it relates land. Could they indulge their feelings on the present to both. This House has heretofore formally occasion, they would not say to an old soldier, who has resolved, and I believe every member who bas bravely fought the battles of his country, that his just addressed you has declared, that he would not claim is extinguished by the mere lapse of a given submit either to the Decrees of France, or the number of years, during which he had not the means Orders in Council of Great Britain. Do nothing of enforcing it. Not compassion alone for a poor sol- and what follows ? I will not say; but the nation dier, but the mandates of justice, would impel them to will surely
decide. The bill before you has never speak a very different language. Conforming, however, to the positive limitations of Congress, they sub- been considered by me a very strong measure; mit the following resolution:
though not a strong measure, it is certainly very Resolved, That the prayer of the petitioner ought in this nation be carried into complete execution
far from submission, and such a measure as can not to be granted.
to say the least of it, it is a fair protest against AMERICAN NAVIGATION BILL. the acts of both Greai Britain and France. And Mt. Eppes moved to postpone the further con- if open war be preferred, there is cause enough
can you do more at this time and preserve peace? sideration of this bill till to-morrow; which was negatived, 51 to 50.
against both. Mr. Goldsborougu moved to amend the bill, you adopt ? None has been mentioned during the
If the bill be rejected, what pacific system will by inserting after the clause for repealing the non-| long time this bill has been debated; it would intercourse law the following words: “except so
seem, therefore, to follow, that no better had much thereof as repeals certain acts therein men- been yet thought of. The first objection made tioned." The reason assigned by Mr. G. for this to the bill, was, that it would operate solely on motion was, that, the embargo law being unlimi- England ; hut, very lately, it has been discovered ted, and the non-intercourse law repealing the em- that it will scarcely be felt in England, and iber bargo being a temporary law, it might be con- it would operate solely on France. Can any at: ceived that when the non-intercourse law expired gument more strongly demonstrate the impara or was repealed, the embargo law would be re- tiality of the bill, than these contradictory objecvived and again in force. This not being the in- tions? If, however, it be true, that it will operate tention of the House, he was desirous to put an harder on them than on the other ; that is not end to all doubt on the subject. The motion was agreed to without a division. I tions, with which we have nothing to do ; it is
owing to the bill, but to their different condiOn motion of Mr. Pitkin, the words " or hav. their acts and not the uncommon situation in ing sea-letters” was inserted after the words " re- which they both now stand, that have injured gistered vessels” in the 5th section, ayes 78. The us. The bill declares to both, that their public operation of this amendment will be to permit and private ships shall not enter our waters, and the sea-letter vessels now in existence to enjoy that their produce and manufactures shall not be
American Navigation Act.
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brought here, except in the manner prescribed in of war, and then we shall reap a real advantage it, and either of them may at any time, by witb- from the course which this nation has so honordrawing their unjust edicts, prevent the operation ably pursued, and which it is still her interest to of the bill as to the nation withilrawing. And pursue, I mean impartial neutrality. While Eureally it seems a little strange, that no one has rope continues in her present state no considattempted to amend the bill, so as to make it oper- eration, unless we are actually attacked, ought to ate impartially, accordingly to his opinion; when induce us to go into the war, either on the side it has been objected by some, that it would oper- of England or France. They have both been ate partially against England, and by others, that anxious that we should engage in it on their side, it will operate partially against France. The and would no doubt make fair promises to pertruth is, sir, that a fair examination of it will con- suade us to engage ; but when once engaged, you vince any man, that the system will operate as would be considered as bound to them at least equally on both nations as any that can be devised, for the war, and their fair promises all forgot. in their present situation; and in determining Those who complain so much of our present sitwhat we ought to do, we ought not for a moment uation, and those who speak so often and so much to forget the power which one has on the land, and about war, for they both oppose the bill, ought to the power which the other has on the sea, nor cast their eyes on the nations of Europe who ought we to expect that France will regard the have been plunged into the war, either to better freedom of the sea, when she does not regard the their condition or vindicate what they supposed freedom of the land ; nor ought we to expect that to be the honor of their Government, and comGreat Britain will regard the freedom of the pare our situation with that of the nation which land when she does not regard the freedom of ihey may think has suffered least, and they will the seas. In examining our foreign relations, find cause to rejoice that their lot has been cast especially with respect to a Legislative act, we to live under a Government and in a nation, ought always to have in view the situation of both of which has had discretion enough to keep the two belligerents: without this it will be diffi- out of the war which has nearly ruined all that cult indeed to preserve our neutrality and peace, engaged in it. and those who think it unwise to preserve these I should like to be informed, whether the gen. any longer, will undoubtedly vote against the tlemen who talk so much about war have turned bill. But, before they do this, I hope they will their attention to the existing state of commerce ? look at the Governments which have at one time Have they ascertained the number of sailors now or other taken part in the wars and struggles of in foreign ports and on the high seas? Have Europe for the last twenty years. Many of the they calculated the value of the ships and carGovernments are destroyed; no matter whether goes now out of the limits of the United States, Republics or Monarchies, all shared the same fate, so that they can inform the House of the number and new Governments have sprung up in their of seamen and the amount of capital, which may places without a single Republic among them. I be jeopardized by the adoption of war measures? ask gentlemen to tell me, what must have been the Have ihey, as a preparatory measure, advised that condition of the people during all these wars and messengers should be immediately sent to Euall these revolutions ? To those who talk so rope, and to the ports of Asia frequented by our much about war, I address myself; and it is a merchant ships, to inform our countrymen of their little strange, that notwithstanding we have so danger, and advise them to return home as soon many war speeches, we have no war motions. as possible ? Have they even thought of an em
The United States are now the only neutral bargo, to prevent the sailors, the ships, and cargoes, nation in the civilized world-to them is com- now at home, from leaving the country? And mitted the sacred trust of preserving neutral whatever may be said at this day about an embarrights, and to no pation are they more valuable. go, I agree to the truth of au observation, made And to those who talk so much about war, per- by a gentleman from South Carolina, (Mr. Taymit me, sir, to inquire, whether they can seriously LOR,) that no Administration, which acts wisebelieve we shall be so likely to do this by war, ly, ever will go to war without first laying one to against those who do not respect them either on get the sailors, vessels, and capital, which may be land or water, as by other means; if they do se- in foreign countries, at home, before a declaration riously believe that we can compel France and of war shall be made. We have been told that England in any reasonable time to do this, I am we could take the Canadas; this is not doubted, willing to confess they have rather more faith on but, while we are taking them, Great Britain may this point than I have. But, if we cannot easily take as many of our vessels and as much property compel England and France to observe our neu- now without our limits as would be four times tral rights, does it follow that we should not their real value-without considering the unfor. keep up a protest against the violations of them? tunate situation of the seaman who is made a pris. to me it seems not; but, on the contrary, that it oner, probably before he knows that the country is our duty to do so ; that whenever the time shall is in war. Considerations like these seem to arrive, when the Governments of civilized na- have no weight; no matter what consequences tions shall incline to respect the public law and result, we must have energetic measures; war morality, that then there may be a standard to pell-mell, to get clear of this bill, which is said appeal io; and then, if not before, we shall find io be downright submission. This seems to me, the advantage of the plan now proposed over that especially in the present state of our affairs, to
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American Navigation Act.
be a new sort of submission. Is it submission, All that they have contended for, according to openly to tell the two most powerful nations in my understanding, is this, that in the present the world, you shall not come here ? No, it is not. state of Europe, and of the United States, they The very prohibition is an act of sovereignty; have not been able to discover a better system, a while one declares it to be submission to France, system that would operate less on ourselves, and another declares it to be submission to England; at the same time have some operation on Eag. though both agree that it is submission, they dis- land and France. My colleague said a great agree as to the Power to which it submits. Nay, deal about war and energy. I have already ensir, it has been said, that this is entirely a mer-deavored to show, that war, under the existing cantile question, and that farmers and planters circumstances of the nation, would be injurious; ought to have nothing to do with it. Then far. I will only add that, by declaring it at this momers and planters ought not to pay any part of ment you would put it in the power of Grea the expense which may grow out of the present Britain lo lake probably one hundred millions of state of our affairs. The fact, however, is, that the our property, and twenty or thirty thousand of pation is made up of planters, farmers, merchants, our sailors. mechanics, and professional men, and all have an I have not seen the force of the observation of interest in the question; and it surely affects the my colleague, as applied to the question now be pecuniary interest of the planter and farmer, more fore the House, that Great Britain enforces ber than it does that of the others. Double freight orders on the ocean by her navy. He cannot ! does not affect the merchant. He makes his profit, am sure, suppose that our little navy, with all and the agricultural people pay il-for every their bravery,could enforce our laws on the ocean, expense attending his trade, he lays an addi- if opposed by all the maritime strength of ibe tional advance on his goods, and ihe agriculo world; and the navy of Great Britain is able to tural people make all good to him. Besides, sir, do this. It is done by physical force and not by the President in his first Message told the House, words; and when we talk about maritime war, that he had authorized our Minister at London we ought to compare the means we have with to inform the British Government that another the end to be obtained. He thinks this the proMinister would be received here, undoubiedly per time to make war on Great Britain, because with a view to adjust our differences by negotia- she is on her last prop and almost ready to fall. tion. What would be thought of our Govern- If it be so, there is no occasion for us to give aid, ment, if, after making this communication to a to kick her down. Let Bona parte have the sale foreign Power, we were to do that which some credit and honor of putting her down. I under: gentlemen have told us we ought do-make open stood my colleague to say, that the friends of and manly war? Nay, sir, suppose Great Bri- the bill were desirous of having a war with Grea: tain should send another Minister, and instead of Britain, but were afraid to declare it. This sit, his finding the Administration ready to receive is not the case with me. I am not afraid to de him, and to treat with him as he expected, he is clare my sentiments upon any question, either el met by a declaration of war, and told to return war or peace. I am not desirous of war with home? This would not be like the dismissing any nation on earth, nor will I consent in the the late Minister for indecent expressions in his present state of the world to enter the war which letters. To me it seems there would be nothing has so long ravaged Europe, either on the side of candid, nothing honorable in transacting our na- France or England. But whenever the Nationa tional affairs in this way; it would be a depari- Government shall declare war, I shall be found ure from the principles which have always gov-as ready to adopt the necessary measures to carry erned the nation,
it on successfully as any man in this House or in There is nothing in the bill which prevents the this nation. Again, he told us that this is the Legislature from adopting any other measure- very time to make the attack, because all the nathe bill may pass, and the House may hereafter tions of Europe are leagued against her—this is adopt such energetic measures as may be thought no reason with me, because I am most decidedly advisable.
against joining any European league, or having A gentleman from New York (Mr. Roor) an alliance with any European Power. I am lately told us, that which we had been told before, opposed to joining the fate of this happy country that the bill was resistance to France and sub- to that of any nation in the world ; nor do I wish mission to England. He has completely proved to have a Minister at the Congress, which Napothat Napoleon had submitted to England, as he leon is to call to settle the maritime rights and se. did that we were about to do it. He told us that cure the freedom of the sea. I have no faith thai Napoleon by his folly was aiding England to it will be done by him. Give bim power on carry her Orders in Council into effect. If then water, and he will do as he has done on the land. to carry her Orders in Council into execution be Give Great Britain power on the land, and she will submission, Napoleon has submitted; but neither do as she has done on the water. But, above all, his folly nor the bill on the table are submission. this weak bill produced the second Message of the
My colleague, (Mr. SAWYER,) who is for very President of the United States. If that Message strong measures, seems to think that the friends has any beariog on the question, according to m! of the bill consider it a certain cure for every weak understanding, it is most decidedly in favor complaint to which the body politic may be sub- of the bill; indeed it is not easy to conceive bom ject. None
of them have yet said so much for it. I the President with propriety could have said more
TO THE HISTORY OF THE ELEVENTH CONGRESS.
[FIRST AND SECOND SESSION8.]
Annapolis, Mr. Reed gave notice of a bill to
change the post route from, to Rockhall, &c. 36
a bill to that effect read twice, and referred 38
15 reported without amendment, and ordered
to a third reading -
read the third time, and passed -
Army and Navy, Mr. Giles submitted a resolu-
585 tion that a select committee be appointed
to inquire whether it be expedient to
make any modification of the laws re-
lating to the
agreed to, and a committee appointed 14
the petition of the citizens of, praying a
law to make and establish a national road
leading from the seat of the National
Government, through Clarksburg, to the
mouth of the Muskingum river, referred
Attorney General, on motion of Mr. Bayard,
the reports of the, made to the Senate in
pursuance of their order of the 6th Feb-
ruary, 1807, were referred to a select
ter of the, read, &c.
596 read a second time, and ordered to a third
647 Bank of Potomac, bill to incorporate the, read, &c. 651
654 Smith of Maryland, the Secretary of the
any and what dividends have been made
by the, over and above six per cent. per
annum, &c. -
9 a report from the Secretary of the Treasury,
petition of the stockholders, &c., of the,
592 praying an act of incorporation, referred
to a select committee
a bill to that effect reported, read, &c. 647
read a second time, and postponed to Do