« AnteriorContinuar »
goods in the market of the foreign country in which they the market for that article, to the entire exclusion of those were manufactured or produced, with the addition of cer- who have less favorable opportunities for purchasing, or tain charges, and ten or twenty per cent., as the case may will not resort to unfair means in preparing their invoices. be, when imported from this or the other side of the Cape The necessary effect of the system is, therefore, to throw of Good Hope. The aggregate of these items on which an extensive branch of the importing business into the the duties are laidh is presumed to be the value of the hands of foreign merchants, who can always lay in their goods when offered for sale in the United States market; goods on better terms than American houses having no but such is rarely the fact. It is not possible for the offi- connexion abroad, and into the hands of those who, whecers, even at any one custom-louse, to ascertain the current ther foreign or American, are the least scrupulous of the value in the foreign market with such precision as will means of gain. Under ordinary circumstances, the advan. render it an item of uniform ratio to that of the current tage which the American merchant has in selling is equivavalue in the United States; and, whatever approach might lent to that which the foreigner has in purchasing; but he be made to this point by one set of officers, aided by long cannot also compete with a different rate of duty. Such experience and superior skill, it is not to be expected that a system, therefore, must either corrupt the American the officers of nearly one hundred separate custom-house merchant, or expel him froin all those branches of busiestablishments can be so well informed of the value of ness in which these operations can be carried on with suc. goods at all the places of exportation, or so equally qualified cess. It is believed that an effectual remedy for this se. by ability and disposition for the performance of this diffi- rious and growing evil, is to adopt the current value of all cult duty, as to secure any reasonable degree of uniformity goods (subject to ad valorem duty) in the United States in the imposition of the customs at all the places of impor- as the true dutiable value--disregarding, of course, the tation. These difficulties, added to the general repug- cost in the foreign market, and excluding all charges and nance of the oflicers to be drawn into collision witli the additions. Such a change, though important in its conimporters, will always render the invoice prices of mer- sequences, will not vary the principle on which impost chandise the chief standard of current value in the foreign duties are now presumed to be laid, and is in conformity market; and corrections will only be made in cases of pal- with that which has long been practised in the most compable crror. This defective operation is the highest per- mercial nation of Europe. According to this plan, instead fection which the present system appears to be capable of; of resorting to vague and arbitrary rules to ascertain the but there are other important objections to it, which are value of goods in the United States, this object may be worthy of great consideration. All impost duties are in- attained by direct means. Ordinary experience, skill, and tended to be paid by the consumer. The present plan attention on the part of the proper officers, will enable frequently obliges the importer to pay them, and proba- them to determine, with all necessary accuracy, the cur. bly as often compels the consumer to pay more than the rent value in their own vicinity; and the mass of informaproper charge upon his consumption. When goods are tion which might readily be collected to correct error, if bought at high prices in the foreign market, and brought any should be made by them, could not fail to secure a into a depressed market at home, the duty may greatly just and equal appraisément. This being accomplished, exceed the advance which the importer is able to sell for'; the Government will receive the whole duty paid by the in which event, a part or the whole of it falls on the im- consumer, and no more; the price of goods will be more porter: but if the goods are bought at prices below the steady; merchants will be exposed to less bazard; and the usual current value, and brought into a market where the opportunity of fair competition between the American and demand is brisk, the consumer pays not only the duty, but foreign merchant, so far as it can be effected by the action nearly as great a price for the goods as if the duty were of the Government, will be restored to that equality which laid on their true value at the place of importation. In a liberal policy cannot deny to foreigners, and which a the first case, the operation may prove ruinous to the im- wise Government will always desire to secure to its own porter; and, in the last, he receives in his profits a portion citizens. of what ought to accrue to the Government. By these An additional reason for the proposed change may be operations, manifest injury is often done either to the Go-found in the difference between the relative values of gold vernment, the consumer, or the importer; the uncertainty and silver, as established by different nations, and the liaand hazard of commercial enterprise are increased; and, bility to error in estimating by law the value of foreign whatever failures ensue, the Government will generally moneys of account in those of the United States. This incur a considerable portion of the loss.
may be illustrated by referring to the money relations of As long as the current value, or rather the invoice price the United States with Great Britain and with Portugal. of goods in the foreign market, is made the basis on which The English pound sterling is fixed by law at four dollars duties are laid, peculiar advantages will be given to those and forty-four cents, United States money, while it is worth who have the best opportunities of purchasing or making about four dollars and eighty cents; hence, the importer up invoices at rates below the current value. The pur- of goods invoiced in sterling money pays a duty on seven chaser wlio lays in his goods low not cnly derives a profit and a half per cent. less than they have actually cost. The directly from this circumstance, but from the difference millrea of Portugal is established by law at one hundred in the amount of duty paid on them at the custom-house. and twenty-four cents: its actual value in United States For instance, a difference of ten per cent. in the cost of money is 111,22 cents, consequently, the importer of an article paying a duty of fifty per cent. gives an advan- goods from Portugal pays duty on about eleven and a half tage of fifteen per cent. to an importer who can purchase per cent. more than their actual cost; which makes the his goods at ten per cent. lower than another. This ad- difference between the valuation on which dnties are imvantage is grcatly increased under the operation of the posed at the custom-house, on goods imported from Engclassification of woollen cloths. These are now neces- land and Portugal, about nineteen per cent. in favor of the sarily imported at prices near the minimum points; and importations from the former. These discrepancies, as those who can manage, either by making better pur- well as all those which arise from the occasional introducchases, or by disguising the current value in the invoice, tion of paper and other currencies in foreign countries, to introduce cloths under a class of duty below that to whose proportional value to gold or silver cannot be acwhich they belong, derive a much greater advantage than curately ascertained, will be avoided by adopting the value above stated. The cloths so transferred on the scale of of the goods in the United States market as the basis for duties may pay in one case forty-five cents per yard, in-charging duties. This effect of the monetary system stcad of one dollar twelve and a half cents; and such im- should of course be taken into consideration in fixing the porters may monopolise the supply of an extensive part of amount of duty in conformity with the proposed change.
It cannot be doubted that a rate of duty imposed in this jects to which their attention was called; together with form somewhat lower than the present, exclusive of the the sub-reports of the committees, upon which the general allowance for the difference in the money, would not only report was founded. produce more revenue, but give more stable and substantial
I have the honor to be, &c. security to the interests of manufactures and commerce.
MONTFORT STOKES, of N. C. The only objections to this change which appear to have
President of the Board. weight, are, first, the difficulty of making so minnte an The Hon. Joux H. Earos, Secretary of War. appraisement as would be necessary of all the articles of importation, without a considerable increase of custom
UNITED STATES' MILITARY ACADEMY, house officers; and, secondly, of making the appraise.
West Point, June, 1830. ment uniform at all the ports. The first may, it is be Honored by an invitation to visit the United States' Milieved, be obviated by arranging the goods into classes ac- litary Academy at West Point, we have continued some cording to value, in such manner as to render the appraise- weeks industriously occupied in the arduous, important, ment not more laborious than at present. These being so and delightful task assigned to our care. You requested adjusted as not materially to vary the rate of duty between us to be full and free in our investigation of every departcontiguous classes, and yet sufficiently distinct to enable ment; we have literally obeyed that injunction, and now the appraisers to assign each article, with reasonable ac- come respectfully to present the result of our labors, not curacy, to its proper class, aided by an invoice of the goods in a strain of formal applause, but in candidly discussing, at their value in the United States, to be furnished on oath on their separate merits, a few of the leading topics which by the importer, would secure all the facilities desired for bave presented themselves. expedition and accuracy in the appraisement, with but lit Whoever has closely viewed this noble institution, must tle addition to the number of officers or the expenses of feel a pride in its existence and prosperity; and we trust the custom-house. The second objection applies to the it is reserved for your hands, by a few judicious alterations, present system with morc force than to that proposed; but to model into perfection this cradle of future warriors and this difficulty may be removed by establishing a regular statesmen. intercommunication and transmission of prices current and The true value of any institution can be appreciated, samples between the custom-houses, which could not fail only by comparing it with the results which it was intended to prevent abuses, and secure a more uniform appraise to produce; we consider, then, that this academy is exment than when the valuation is based on prices in the fo- pected to furnish to the army a supply of efficient officers; reign market, inasmuch as it will be easier to ascertain the to the militia, an intermixture of well trained citizens, current prices at the principal marts of commerce in the qualified on emergency to discipline that last and best arm United States than in those of foreign countries.
of republics; to internal improvement, a corps of engineers, In recommending these important modifications in the capable of giving wholesome direction to the spirit of impost system, as well as those suggested in the last annual enterprise which pervades our country. It ought to furreport,
inay be proper to remark, that it is deemed by nish science for exploring the hidden treasures of our the Department very undesirable to make frequent changes mountains, and ameliorating the agriculture of our valleys; in measures of public policy which affect so extensively nor is it upon inert matter alone that it ought to extend a individual as well as public interests, and that proceedings vivifying influence. Inheriting from our varied ancestry of this nature should be subjected to a careful scrutiny, the discordant characteristics of every people on the globe, and ample time given by way of notice to all who may be it yet remains to forin a specific and all-pervading characaffected by them, as well foreigners as citizens of the ter for the American nation; nor do we conceive any surer United States, before they are carried into effect. But, method of stamping upon the yet glowing wax a more notwithstanding this indisposition to change, it is proper majestic form, than by sending into every district young to remark that much of the legislation upon this subject, men, emphatically the children of our country, trained to since the act of 20 March, 1799, has been adopter chiefly the manly exercise of arms, and imbued with the tastes with a view to promote particular objects of special interest of science and literature ; instructed in the principles pressing upon the Government at the moment of its action, and action of our political system, and the living exemplar and hence some necessary precautions for guarding the from which sound education may rear the social edifice. revenue, and avoiding the injuries liable to be inflicted These preliminaries being adjusted in the vestibule, perby the changes upon those engaged in commerce and other mit us to conduct you into the interior of the Academy, pursuits, seem to bave been overlooked. The approach- where we have atter.ded the examinations with assiduous ing crisis in the fiscal policy of the United States will re- diligence. quire a revision of an important part of the system; and it would stretch this report to inordinate length, were the opportunity will be propitious for a general review of we to detail the multifarious points examined: they can its clefects. The proposed modifications are, therefore, be found on the programme of the professors. Suffice it now presented to the consideration of Congress. To afford to say that, on all branches, the answers were ready, time for mature deliberation, and for collecting all the in- thoroughi, evinced a fundamental understanding of the formation that may be necessary, if their adoption should subject, and proved that the judgment of the pupils had be determined on, to reconcile individual interests with been cultivated, rather than their memory superficially those of the Government.
extended. All which is respectfully submitted.
The art of war is, and ought to be, the grand object of S. D. INGHAM, attention. It naturally divides itself into three branches--
Secretary of the Treasury. engineering, artillery, and tactics. The theory of each TREASURY DEPARTMENT,
is explained on mathematical principles, whether for attack December 15, 1830.
or defence, in works or in the field. The construction of permament or temporary fortifications; entrenchments,
with their various lises and positions; movements and manUNITED STATES' MILITARY ACADEMY.
æuvres; the effects and manufacture of various projec
tiles; in short, every thing that could impress the princi. WEST POINT, June 24, 1830.
ples, or illustrate the practice of war, was minutely insisted Sir: The Board of Visiters to the Military Academy of on. Objections were raised, difficulties were proposed, West Point, having completed their examinations, I here- searching questions were asked'; on each and every point, with transmit their general report, upon the various sub-l the answers evinced the subjects to be well understood.
The Board, however, without pretending to the knowledge black broth; yet it seems a question, whether youths ought of military men, would suggest whether the great and to be accustomed to a fare more generous than they will almost exclusive attention devoted to military engineering probably find on returning to the parental household. In and the science of fortification, does not retrench what is the house assigned for the hospital service, the rooms and due to the “art militaire" in its most comprehensive sense: the apothecary's shop were found in perfect order, and that is, to grand tactics, and what may be termed the stra- under excellent regulation. The building, however, was tegy of war. A competent course of instruction in this esteemed to be inadequate to the accommodation of the department we conceive would require an additional text post; we were, therefore, much gratified in visiting the book, and a regular course of lectures on the art of war; new hospital, for which an appropriation was recently embracing for illustration descriptions of remarkable bat- made by Congress, and which is now almost ready for octles, showing how they were fought, what excellence of cupation. It contains sufficient accommodation for the generalship or stroke of genius won, or what errors lust sick, together with houses for the surgeon and his assisthem. Admirably situated, also, as the school is, with re- tant, under the same roof. With the neatness and solidity gard to its topographical advantages and adaptation to the of the building, the convenience of its internal arrangepurpose, it would be highly useful in perfecting the mili- ment, and the beauty of its location, we were greatly tary education of the cadets, if they were occasionally pleased. While pursuing our inquiries in this department, taken into the field, and trained in the practical applica- we learned, that although the cadets are not liable to viotion of the science of engineering and topography, in lent and fatal diseases, yet their general health does not which they are so well instructed in theory.
appear to be as good as would be expected from the saluAn astonishing proficiency in drawing' proves that no brity of the place in which they live, and the attention ordinary praise is due to that department. But its charac- paid to their food, cleanliness, &c. A very great amount ter is entirely civil, and confined to the imitation of pictures of inedicines, such as are administered in a torpid state of and models. Is it not essential that military surveyors the digestive organs, and in other diseases incident to per. should be accustomed to sketch nature readily and accu- sons of sedentary and studious habits, is used at this post. rately from the surrounding mountains?
The proportion is believed to be much greater than that Civil engineering has been also well taught, and we lis required for any other military station belonging to the tened with much pleasure to a discussion on the properties United States. We esteem this to arise from a want of and analysis of various materials; with all the details of sufficient bodily exercise, and that it exists principally arches, bridges, canals, locks, inclined planes, roads, tun- during the winter season, and in the spring. In summer nels, railways, embankments, harbors, &c. We predict and autumn, the daily drills and other excitements to bothat pupils of West Point will deliver the country from dily exercise are sufficient for the purpose of health, and that quack engineering which has, in divers instances, in- the beneficial result is very obvious: but for nearly half flicted deep wounds upon our system of internal improve the year, the military exercises are suspended, and the inent. Architecture receives due attention: Grecian and severe winter climate, in some measure, precludes those Roman models have been procured, and our country may of a voluntary nature. The young men are consequently be embellished by the taste of the cadets, provided they obliged to pass at once from an active state to habits sed. · abstain from imitating the buildings in which they are entary and studious in no common degree, and the evils taught that science.
just intimated must follow of course. In order to alleviate, We have made a patient and minute inquiry into the or entirely remove them, we are convinced that a building police, discipline, and fiscal concerns of the Military Aca- should be erected adapted to winter drills and gymnastic demy at West Point. Considering it to be of the utmost exercises; and that they should be regularly required. importance to the elfare and stability of this valuable in The sutler's establishment fell under particular examistitution, that its management, in these respects, should nation. Although it is to be regretted that there is one exhibit fidelity and sound judgment; and various circum- at this station, yet we are fully convinced that its strict stances having conspired to render it desirable at the pre-regulation prevents any injury resulting from it to the sent time, that the Department of War, and the public cadets; and that the soldiers and laborers, for whom alone generally, should be fully satisfied whether or not this is it is wanted, are much less exposed to evil than if they the case, we have felt called upon to devote our best at. were tempted, for want of such a place, to encourage the tention to this branch of investigation. We feel much secret introduction of spirituous liquors, and the establishpleasure in acknowledging that every facility has been ment of shops for selling in the neighborhood, which would given to us by the superintendent. Books and documents be under no control. We are glad to learn, that, through have been freely thrown open to our inspection, and every the instrumentality of a temperance society, recently individual concerned has fully and readily answered our formed among the soldiers, and by other measures pruinterrogatories.
dently adopted, the consumption of spirituous liquors has For the sake of precision, our observations will be ar- manifestly decreased. ranged under the three specific heads: Police, Discipline, The hotel, the erection of which was authorized by the and Fiscal Concerns.
Department of War, has been occupied for a year past, 1st. Police.--We visited every part of the institution and it is at once an ornament to the Point, and a great that properly comes under this head. In the tailors' and accommodation to the numerous visiters who resort to it. shoemakers' shops, we examined the style of making the For many years the want of such an establishment has various articles of clothing provided for the cadets. We been seriously felt by the inhabitants of the Point, and by also visited the shop of the storekeeper, and are satisfied the many persons who were constantly landing there from that these establishments are placed under regulations motives of curiosity, or to visit cadets—their friends or rewell adapted to secure the cadets from all impositions, and, latives. Upon the farm, purchased some time since by at the same time, to restrain them from any needless ex- the United States, there was, indeed, a tavern, but it was travagance. The mess hall and the kitchen were visited useless, being altogether out of the way of persons arriv. several times during meals, and while the food was under ing at the station, and its purchase was renciered expedipreparation: the bill of fare and the other regulations were ent, because it was sufficiently near the barracks to entice examined. We were of opinion, that all the details of the the cadets to resort to it. The present hotel is placed in establishment are so arranged as to secure a cleanly, the best possible position for the accommodation of visitwholesome, and abundant supply of food; and that the ers, and it is under such judicious regulations, that no induties of the steward are performed in a most exemplary convenience can be reasonably apprehended from it. and faithful manner. We are no advocates of the Spartan 2d. Discipline.--We at first experienced some little he.
sitation at entering minutely into this part of our investi- ther such a measure would not be just in itself, as alleviatgation, lest it might bear the appearance of an unwarrant- ing the anxieties of parents and guardians, and also expeed distrust of the superintendent and the academic staff; (dient, as having a tendency to prevent or remove such but, considering the Department of War and the country prejudices against the academy as have been excited in at large have a right to full and explicit information upon the minds of those to whom the information of the serious this, as upon every other point connected with the man- delinquency of their children or wards has been communiagement of the Academy, and that the Board of Visiters cated without previous warning. are sent here for the purpose of obtaining and communi 3d. Fiscal concerns. We have not been less diligent cating this information, we esteemed ourselves under obli- and minute in our inquiries under this head, than under gation to proceed. We regard it as no more than justice those which have preceded; on the contrary, if investigato the superintendent to say, that, so far from having any tions have been more thorough upon any one point than unwillingness to being interrogated upon this head, he so- upon another, they have taken place upon that now under licited, in the most frank and honorable manner, a full and consideration. Having learned that the attention of preminute inquiry. He made a lucid statenient of the prin- vious Boards had not been specially called to this subject, ciples upon which every part of the discipline of the aca- we thought that a time had arrived when, with advantage demy is conducted, and also exhibited the books and re- to the service, and with satisfaction to those particularly gisters in which all the proceedings relating to it are pre-concerned, and to the country generally, the fiscal conserved. These we examined, and asked and received full cerns of the Academy, not only for the past year, but for information upon every point which required elucidation. a number of years, might be thoroughly examined. The deliberate judgment at which we have arrived is, that We have visited the office of the quartermaster, and, as no discipline could be established upon sounder princi- far as his department is connected with the Academy, (and ples, por administered with greater kindness, discrimina- to this only could our attention be directed with proprietion, justice, and decision, than that of the Military Aca- ty,) we are fully satisfied that it is well conducted; the demy at West Point. Certain rules for conferring appro- system by which the various books are kept is very combation or administering reproof are laid down, well known, plete; and we have no opinion to express but that of entire and understood by the corps of cadets. It is believed approbation. The office of the treasurer and paymaster to be impossible that any one of them should fall under more fully employed our attention, as in this office are censure without having had previous and ample warming. kept the accounts of expenditure amongst the cadets, and Whether or not the custom of instituting courts martial of receipts and disbursements relating particularly to West to try the cadets for certain offences, should be continuerl, Point. We will first express, in general terms, not simor, whether it would not be better to give this authority ply our approbation, but our admiration of the accuracy entirely to the academic staff, we are not prepared to ex-land neatness with which the whole business of this office press a sentiment. We have no hesitation, however, in is conducted. In the circular letter received from the Se. giving the decided opinion, that sentences passed, after a cretary of War by the members of the Board, it is suggestfull and impartial investigation, should be sustained; and, ed to inquire particularly into the fiscal concerns of the that a case must be extreme, indeed, to warrant its being Academy: as, however, the receipt and disbursement of suspended or reversed. We are satisfied that such occur- the pay of the cadets, and of other appropriations made rences have a tendency to weaken discipline, and bring by Congress, is regularly examined in another quarter, wholesome authority into contempt, and that if frequently we supposed that it was principally incumbent upon us repeated they would produce effects the most injurious to to examine relatively to the moneys which might arise the true interests of the Academy.
from the property of the United States at the Point itself. There is in successful operation a very thorough system As regards the cadets, their accounts are kept with great of classifying the cadets, and registering their relative precision; they have to pass such repeated examination, standing, both as it respects general deportment and pro- and are so effectually checked, that it seems hardly within ficiency in the various studies. This information is trans- the limit of possibility that any individual of the corps mitted to the Department of War, in the former case, should suffer loss, or be permitted to indulge in extravaevery month, and, in the latter case, every week. By gance. Each one has a pass book, being a transcript of this effective and judicious system, the public authori- his account on the books of the office; he has, also, a simities are almost as fully and minutely informed of the re- lar book for his running account with the different tradeslative merits of the cadets, and of the general condition people. No bill is discharged unless it has the signature of the national school, as they could be were it establish- of the cadet himself, in testimony of its correctness; nor ed at the seat of Government. The only suggestion can be procure any article of dress, or otherwise, except which the committee has to offer, under this head, is, by express permission, under the hand of the superintendthat, if practicable, the parents and guardians of young ent. We were fully satisfied in these particulars. Our men at the Academy, should have official information con- attention was then directed to the state of the public procerning their conduct and standing at stated periods, and perty at this post. We found in the books accounts openespecially that timely warning should be given when cadets ed with two different funds, called the land fund and the exhibit a tendency to such neglect of study, or irregularity school fund. The former was commenced by virtue of of deportment, as will subject them to censure, or such authority derived from the Secretary of War, and communatural incapacity as renders them unfit to receive the nicated to the superintendent from the Engineer Departpublic patronage. We are satisfied that, whenever such ment, in a letter from General Macomb, bearing date Deinformation has been requested by parents or guardians, cember 20, 1822. It appears that the present superintenit has been given by the superintendent promptly and dent, finding that a considerable saving might be made of frankly. But, if given universally and statedly, it would small amounts derived from the public domain, which had impose upon the superintendent an amount of correspond- previously been lost or thrown into the treasury without ence which, in addition to his other weighty and responsi- discrimination, suggested to the Engineer Department the ble duties, it would be next to impossible to execute, even expediency of raising a fund from the same. The idea under the impulse of his well known and devoted zeal to was communicated to the Secretary of War, was approved the best interests of the Academy. If the present sugges- by him, and the superintendent duly authorized to make tion then be entertained, some general plans must be the proceeds arising from the public domain at West Point, adopted for carrying it into effect, and the superintendent by selling wood, hoop poles, &c. &c. a separate fund, to must have the requisite assistance. It may be worthy of be applied to the benefit of the institution. From this the serious consideration of the Department of War, whe-source, and from the rent of certain public buildings occu
pied by persons living at West Point, this fund was accu- the land fund and the school fund have been raised and mulated. We examined the books relating to its very increased by the exercise of strict economy, and have been origin, and followed up the accounts to the present period. disbursed for valuable and substantial improvements, with We believe that every single article of receipt and expen- good taste and sound judgment. diture came under our notice and inspection. The wood Having, as you will perceive by the preceding review, was sold to persons who, under contracts regularly enter- minutely examined the police and fiscal departments of ed into, and communicated to the Engineer Department, the institution, we consider it due to the gentlemen filling bought it on condition of receiving half the proceeds for these departments, to express our unanimous and warm cutting it down and carrying it to market. These pro- approbation of the system, order, and efficiency, with which ceeds are regularly entered in the books. In some in the duties of the military staff of the post are discharged. stances this wood was purchased from the contractors by We have the satisfaction of declaring that, after a pathe quartermaster for the United States' service, and upon tient and minute investigation of the internal police, the reasonable terms. On this point we have to observe, that discipline, and the fiscal concerns of the Military Acadethe fuel purchased for the use of the station, during the my at West Point, we find nothing to disapprove, little to administration of the present superintendent, has been suggest, and very much to commend. procured upon terms considerably more favorable than at
Warfare, commencing on the ferocious onset of savage any previous period. By strict economy and good manage barbarians, rose gradually with civilization into an art, and, ment the amount of sixteen thousand three hundred and since the invention of gunpowder, has assumed the dignity forty-six dollars and eighty-four cents has thus been secured of a science, based upon matheniatics and natural philosoto the United States. It has been expended in erecting plıy. As such it is treated at West Point. Without a kitchen to be attached to the cadet's mess room; in con- troubling you with a detail of the numerous ramifications structing barracks, which were much needed for the mu- through which the study is followed, we shall only stale sicians of the band; and the balance, of eight thousand sc. that we have heard with interest and pleasure a very proven hundred and thirteen dollars, has been appropriated tracted examination upon all the leading topics of algebra, to building the hotel above mentioned.
surveying, shades and shadows, perspective, spherical proThe school fund has been raised from the profits ac-jections, and the calculi. These, with a lorg list of other cruing from the sutler's establishment. It has been ex- performances, form a mathematical exercise, surpassing pended in erecting two school houses, and in partly main. in extent and accuracy the course (we believe) of any taining teachers for the children of the soldiers upon the other academic institution. While we pay a merited triPoint, and others connected with the public service. Abute to the learning and assiduity of the preceptors, and small amount of this fund has been transferred, for a time, the talent and diligence of the pupils, we must remark to the land fund; but is to be returned when the charge that this appears to us a pursuit of somewhat all-engrossfor building the hotel is liquidated.
ing character. To a certain extent, mathematics are inThe station at West Point has been greatly benefited dispensable, and must occupy much time, but beyond that in several respects, and especially by the erection of a large, universal test, utility, we think they ought to give place commodious, and handsome hotel, which commands the to studies of equal importance. Mechanics, optics, elecunited approbation of all who have seen it, and which tricity, astronoiny, and other branches of natural philosoevery person, at all acquainted with the situation, regards phy, next occupied our attention; and we consider them as having been a measure of indispensable necessity. The taught with a success as great as possible with a very limitwhole cost of the hotel is seventeen thousand two hundred ed apparatus. Considering the high importance of these and twenty-six dollars and twelve cents; of this sum, five subjects, an appropriation for this specific purpose would thousand eight hundred and ninety-five dollars and thirty- be well judged liberality. seven cents are yet unpaid. This balance, however, is We think that some modifications might be beneficially rapidly decreasing by the proceeds of the land fund, and adopted in the apportionment of attention allotted to each the rent of the hotel. When this balance shall have been branch of study. Mathematics are indisputably the basis entirely liquidated, the whole rent of the hotel, which can of military science, and we would by no means disparage never be less than one thousand dollars per annum, and a branch of study of such pre-eminent importance. But perhaps more, will be available to meet expenditures for mathematics are not the alpha and omega of the art of the post schools, the library of the academy, and for other war. Few minds are competent to grasp, and still fewer valuable objects connected with it. From this statement to carry into their highest application, the recondite proit will be obvious that no common degree of credit is due positions of that science. Nor is this probably requisite. to the superintendent, for his watchful care over the pub. To a certain extent, such inquiries are of paramount im. lic interests, and for the good judgment with which they portance; but we doubt whether it be essential to the forhave been managed. For these important objects the ination of an efficient officer, that he be able to solve every Government has not been called upon to make a single question on the equation of osculatury circles. Let full appropriation, nor have been exposed to any expense scope be still afforded to genius of this species, as often as whatever. The whole has been accomplished by a rigidit is discovered, and, when sufficiently matured, let its economy of resources which might have disappeared by claims be allowed a preference in the engineer and artilneglect, without the knowledge of any one, and which in lery corps; but let us not destroy talenf, in its other beau. some degree had disappeared, until arrangements were tiful and useful forms, by clipping it into triangles and made by the present superintendent to preserve and in parallelograms. There are other qualifications of the citicrease them, until they amounted to a fund adequate to zen) warrior, characters never to be separated,) to which we the accomplishinent of the above valuable purposes.
recommend increased attention; convinced, as we are, that, We therefore cannot satisfy our feelings without ex- in the conduct of war, genius of the highest order frepressing our unqualified approbation of the faithful and quently exists, without that peculiar bent which leads to judicious con-luct of the superintendent. We would es. excellence in mathematics. teem it an insult to his well earneil and well sustained re. Destined to become depositaries of a power, in its nature putation, as a gentleman and a man of honor, to give him arbitrary, ought not these interesting youths to be early our public meed of approbation for his integrity in con- taught to appreciate the principles, and venerate the allducting these measures. This can never for a moment be thority of law; and through the kindly medium of philosoimpeached, from any quarter reputable in itself or deserv. phy, to view their duties and relations towards friends and ing notice, from its information upon the subject. We, country? Circumscribed by quarters, garrisons, and camps, however, with propriety, can repeat our judgment, that ought not the studies of language and literature to afford