« AnteriorContinuar »
public acts be, as far as practicable, simple, undisguised, consider it vither hooast or wise to purchase loc:l favor and intelligible, that they may become fit subjects for at the sacrifice of principle and the general gool. the approbation or animadversion of the people. The So understanding public sentiment, and thoroughly bill authorizing a subscription to the Louisville and Port- satisfied that the best interests of our common comiry land canal affords a striking illustration of the difficulty imperiously require that the course which I have reconof with bolding additional appropriations for the same ob. mendel in this regard should be adopted, i have, upon ject, when the first erroneous step has been taken by in the most mature consideration, determined to pursue it. stituting a partnership between the Government and pri It is due to candor, as well as to my own feelings, that vate companies. It proposes a third subscription on the I should express the reluctance and anxiety which I must part of the United States, when cach preceding one was at all times experience in exercising the undoubted right at the time regarded as the extent of ihe aid which Go- of the Executive to withholil his assent from bills on other vernment was to render to that work; and the accompa- grounds than their constitutionality. That this right nying bill for light-houses, &c. contains an appropriation should not be exerciseal on sliglit occasions, all will adfor a survey of the bed of the river, with a view to its mit. It is only in matters of deep interest, when the improvement, by removing the obstruction which the ca- principle involved may be justly regarded as next in im. nal is designed to avoid. This improvement, if success. portance to infractions of the Constitution itself, that ful, would afford a free psssage to the river, an:l renkler such a step can be expected to meet with the approbathe canal entirely useless. To such improvidence is the tion of the people. Such an occasion do I conscientious. course of legislation subject, in relation to internal im. ly believe the present to be. In the discharge of this provements on local matiers, even with the best inten- lelicate and highly responsible duty, I am sustained by iions on the part of Congress.
the reflection that the exercise of this power has been Although the motives which have influenced me in this deemed consistent with the obligation of official duty by matter may be already sufficiently statel, I am, never- several of my predecessors; and by the persuasion, too, theless, induced by its importance to aild a few obserra. that, whatever liberal institutions may have to fear from tions of a general character.
the encroachments of Executive power, which has been In my objections to the bills anthorizing subscriptions every where the cause of so much strife and bloody conto the Maysville and Rockville Road Companies, I ex- tention, but litile (langer is to be apprehended from a prepressed my views fully in regard to the power of Con. cedent by which that authority denies to itself the exergress to construct roads and canals within a State, or to cise of powers that bring in their train influence and pa. appropriate money for improvements of a local character. tronage of great extent; and thus excludes the operation 1, at the same time, intimated my belief that the right to of personal interests, every where the bane of official make appropriations for such as were of a national cha. trust. I derive, too, no small degree of satisfaction from racter hac been so generally acted upon, and so long the reflection, that, if I have mistaken the interests and acquiesced in by the Federal and State Governments, and wishes of the people, the Constitution asfor is the means the constituents of each, as to justify its exercise on the of soon redressing the error, by selecting for the place ground of continued and uninterrupted usage; but that it their favor das bestowed upon me a citizen whose opi. was, nevertheless, bighly expedient that appropriations, nons may accord with their own. I trust, in the mean even of that character, should, with the exception madde time, the interests of the nation will be saved fro.n preat the time, be deferred until the national debt is paid, judice, by a rigid application of that portion of the public and that, in the mean while, some general rule for the ac- funds wlich might otherwise be applied to different ob. tion of the Gwernment in that respcct ought to be esta jects to that liighest of all our obligations, the payment blished.
of the public debt, and an opportunity be alfüriled for These suggestions were not necessary to the decision the adoption of some better rule for the operations of the of the question then before me, and were, I readily add Government in this matter than any which has lithurto init, intended to awaken the attention, and draw forth been acted upon. the opinions and observations, of our constituents, upon Profoundly impressed with the importance of the sub. a subject of the highest importance to their interests, and ject, not merely as it relates to the general prosperity of one destined to exert a powerful influence upon the fu- the country, but to the safety of the federal systein, I canture operations of our political system. I know of no not avoid repeating my earnest hope that all good cilin tribunal to which a public inan in this country, in a case zens, who take a proper interest in the success and bare of doubt and clilliculty, can appeal with greater advantage inony of our admirable political institutions; and who are or mor: propriety, than the judgment of the people; and incapable of desiring to convert an opposite state of although I must necessarily, in the discharge of my offi- things into means for the gratification of personal ::mbi cial duties, be governed by the dictates of my own judy- tion-will, laying aside minor considerations, and discarilment, ji bave no desire to conceal my anxious wish to cou-ing local prejudices, unite their honest exertions to estab. form, its far as I can, to the views of those for whom I act. lish some fixed general principle, which shall be calcı.
All irregular expressions of public opinion are ot' neces. Jateil iv effect the greatest extent of public good in resity atten led with some doubt as to their accuracy: but, gard to the subject of internal improvement, and afford making full allowances on that account, I cannot, I think, the least ground for sectional discontent. deccive myself in believing that the acts referred tv, as The general ground of my objection to local appropri. well as the suggestions which I allowed myself to make ations lias been dieretofure expressed; and I shall endeain relation to their bearing upon the future operations vor to avoid a repetition of what has been alreatly urgeriof the Government, have been approved by the great bo- the importance of sustaining the State sovereignties, as dy of the people. That those whose immediate pecuniary far as is consistent with the righelul action of the Federal interests are to be affected by proposed expenditures Government, and of preserving the greatest attainable should sluink from the application of a rule which pre- harmony between them. I will now only add an expres. fers their more general and remote interests to those sion of my conviction--a conviction which every day's which are personal and immediate, is to be expectedl. experience serves to confirm ---that the political creed Buleren such objections must, froin the nature of our which inculcates the pursuit of those great objects as a population, be bit ternporary in their duration; and if it paramount duty is the true faitli, auch one to which we were otherwise, our course should be the same, for the ire mainly indebted for the present success of the entire time is yet, I hope, far distant, when those entrusted with system, and to which we must alone luuli for its future power to be exercised for the good of the whole, will, stability.
That there are diversities in the interests of the differ They rest, as far as they have com: to my knowledge, ent States which compose this extensive confederacy, on the following grounds: 1st, an objection to the ratio must be aclmilled. Those diversities, arising froin sitten of distribution; 2:1, an apprehension that the existence of tion, climate, population, and pursuits, are uoubtless, as such a regulation woull produce improvident and oppresit is natural they should be, greatly exaggerated by jea. sive taxation to raise the funds for distribution; 3i, that lousies and that spirit of rivalry so inseparable from neigh the mode proposed would lead to the construction of boring communities. These circumstances make it the works of a local nature, to the exclusion of such as are duty of those who are entrusted with the management of general, and as woull consequently be of a more useful its affairs to neutralize their effects as far as practicable, character; and, last, that it would create a discreditable by making the beneficial operation of the Federal Go: and injurious dependence, on the part of the State Government as equal and equitable among the several vernments, ipon the federal power. Of those who obStates as can be done consistently with the great en is of ject to the ratio of representation as the basis of distribuits institution.
lion, soine insist that ihe importations of the respective It is only necessary to refer 10 undoubted facts, 10 see States would constitute one that would be more equitahow far tlie past acts of the Government upon the sub ble; and others, again, that the extent of their respecject under consideration have fallen short of this object. tive territories would furnish a standard which would be The expenditures heretofore maile for internal improve more expedient, and sufficiently equitable. The ratio of ment amount to upwards ot' five millions of dollars, and representation presented itself to my mind, and it still have been distributed in very unequal proportions does, is one of obvious equity, because of its being the amongst the Slates. The estimaleil expense of works of ratio of contribution, whether the funds to be (listributed which surveys have been made, logether with that of oth pe derived fro'n the customs or from direct taxation. It ers projecies and partially surveyed, amount to more than does not follow, however, that its adoption is indispensaninety-six millions of dollars.
ble to the establishment of the system proposed. There That such improvements, on account of particular cir- may be considerations appertaining to ihe subject which cumstances, may be more advantageously and beneficial- would render a departure, to some extent, from the rule ly made in some states than in others, is doubtless true; of contribution, proper. Nor is it absolutely necessary but that they are of a character which should prevent an Ihat the basis of distribution be confined to one ground. equitable distribution of the funds amongst the several It may, if, in the judgment of those whose right it is to States, is not to be conceded. The want of this equita- fix it, it be deemed politic and just to give it that characble distribution cannot fail to prove a prolific source of in- ter, have regard to several. ritation amongst the States.
In my first message, I stated it to be my opinion that We have it constantly before our eyes, that professions " it is not probable that any adjustment of the tariff' upon of superior zeal in the cause of internal improvement, and principles satisfactory to the people of the Union, will, a disposition to lavish the public funds upon objects of intil a remote period, if ever, leave the Government with that character, are daily and earnestly put forth by itspi- ont a considerable surplus in the treasury beyond what rants to power, as constituting the highest claims to the may be required for its current service.” Thave had no confidence of the people. Would it be strange, under
cause to change that opinion, but much to confirm it. such circumstances, and in times of great excitement, should these expectations be realizel, a suitable fund that grants of this description should find their motives in would thus be produced for the plan under consideration objects which may not accorl with the public good? to operate upon; and if there be no such fund, its adopThose who have not had occasion to see and regret the lion will, in my opinion, work no injury to any interest; indication of a sinister influence in these matters in past for I cannot assent to the justness of the apprehension times, have been more fortunate than myself in their ob that the establishment of the proposed system would tend servation of the course of public affairs. If to these evils to the encouragement of improvident legislation of the be added the combinations and angry contentions to character supposed. Whatever the proper authority, in which such a course of things gives rise, with their bale- the exercise of constitutional power, shall, at any time ful influences upon the legislation of Congress touching hercafter, decide to be for the general good, will, in that the leading and appropriate duties of the Federal Go
as in other respects, (leserve and receive the acquiesvernment, it was but domg justice to the characier of our
cence and support of the whole country; and we have people to expect the severe condemnation of the past ample security that every abuse of power in that regarı, which the recent exhibition of public sentiment has evinced. by the agents of the people, will receive a speedy and
Nothing short of a radical change in the action of the effectual corrective at their hands. The views which I Government upon the subject, can, in my opinion, reme. take of the future, founded on the obvious and increasing dy the evil. it, as it would be natural to expect, the improvement of all classes of our fellow.citizens, in intelSiates which have been least favored in past appropria- ligence, and in public and private virtue, leave me withtions should insist on being redressed in ihose hereafter out much apprehension on that head. to be made, at the expense of the States which have so I do not doubt that those who come after us will be as largely and disproportionately participated, we have, as much alive as we are to the obligation upon all the trusmaiters now stand, but little security that the attempi tees of political power to exempt those for whom they wonld do more than change the inequality from one quar act from all unnecessary burdens; and as sensible of the ter to ano: her.
great truth, that the resources of the nation, beyond those Thus viewing the subject, I have heretofore felt it my required for the immediate and necessary purposes of duty to recommend the adoption of some plan for the Government, can no where be so well deposited as in the distribution of the surplus tunds which may at any time pockets of the people. remain in the treasury after the national debt shall have
It may somctimes happen that the interests of particular been paid, among the Stales, iri proportion to the number States would not be deemed to coincide with the general of their representatives, to be applied by them to objects interest in relation to improvement within such States. of internal improvement.
But, if the danger to be apprehended from this source is Although this plan has met with favor in some portions sufficient to require it, a discretion might be reserved to of the Union, it has also elicited objections which meril Congress to direct, to such improvements of a general deliberate consideration. A briet notice of these objec- character as the States concerned might not be disposed tions here will not, therefore, I trust, be regarded as out to unite in, the application of the quotas of those States, of place.
under the restriction of confining to each State the ex
penditure of its appropriate quota. It may, however, be general weal. Unless the American people have dege. assumed as a safe general rule, that such improvements nerated, the same result can be again effected, whenever as serve to increase the prosperity of the respective States experience points out the necessity of a resort to the same in which they are made, by giving new facilities to trade, means to uphold the fabric which their fathers have rearand thereby aligmenting the wealth and comfort of their ed. It is beyond the power of man to make a system of inhabitants, constitute the surest mode of conferring per government like ours, or any other, operate with precise manent and substantial advantages upon the whole. The equality rpon States situated like those which compose strength, as well as the true glory, of the confederacy, is this Confederacy; nor is inequality always injustice. Eve. mainly founded on the prosperity and power of the severy State cannot expect to shape the measures of the Geral incependent sovereignties of which it is composed, neral Government to suit its own particular interests. The and the certainty with which they can be brought into causes which prevent it are seated in the nature of things, successful, active co operation, through the agency of the and cannot be entirely counteracted by human means. Federal Government.
Mutual forbearance, therefore, becomes a duty obligatory It is, moreover, within the knowledge of such as are upon all; and we may, I am confident, count on a cheer. at all conversant with public affairs, that schemes of in- ful compliance with this loigh injunction, on the part of ternal improvement have, from time to time, been pro our constituents It is not to be supposed that they will posed, which, from their extent and seening magnifi ohject to make such comparatively inconsiderable sacri. cence, were regarded as of national concernment; but fices for the preservation of rights and privileges, which which, upon fuller consideration and further experience, other less favored portions of the world have in vain wad. would now be rejected with great unanimity.
ed through seas of blooil to acquire. That the plan inder consideration would derive impor. Our course is a safe one, if it be but faithfully adhered tant avantages from its certainty; and that the moneys 10. Acquiescence in the constitutionally expressed will set apart for these purposes would be more judiciously of the majority, and the exercise of that will in a spirit applied and economic:dly espended under the direction of moderation, justice, and brotherly kindness, will conof ihe State Legislatures, in which every part of each stitute a cement which would forever preserve our Union. Slate is immediately represented, cannot, I think, be Those who cherish and inculcate sentiments like these, doubted. In the new States particularly, where a com- render a most essential service to their country; whilst paratively small population is scattered over an extensive those who scek 10 weaken their influence, are, however surface, and the representation in Congress consequently conscientions and praise worthy their intentions, in effect very limited, it is natural to expect that the appropria- its worst enemies. lions made by the Federal Government would be more If the inielligence and influence of the country, inlikely to be expended in the vicinity of those members stead of laboring to foment sectional prejudices, to be through whose immediate agency they were obtainedl, made subserviert to party warf:re, were, in good faith, than it the funds were placed under the control of the applied 10 the eradication of causes of local discontent, Legislature, in which every county of the State has its by the improvement of our institions, and by facilitat. own representative. This supposition does not necessa ing their adaptation to the condition of the times, this rily impugn the motives of such Congressional representask would prove one of less difficulty. diay we not tatives, nor is it so intended. We are all sensible of the hope that the obviolis interests of our common country, bias to which the strongest minds and purest hearts are, and the dictates of an enlightened patriotism, will, in tlie under such circumstances, liable. In respect to the last en l, lead the public mind in that direction. objection, its probable efl'ect upon the dignity and inde After all, tie nature of the subject does not admit of a pendence of the State Governments, it appears to ine on plan wholly free from objection. That which has for ly necessary to state the case as it is, and as it woull be if some time been in operation is, perhaps, the worst that the measure proposed were adopted, to show that the could exist ; and every advance that can be made in its operation is most likely to be the very reverse of that in provement is a matter eminently worthy of your most which the objection supposes.
deliberare attention. In the one case, the State woull receive its quola of Its very possible that one better calculated to effect the national revenile for domestic use, upon a fixed prin the objects in view may yet be derisel. If so, it is to be ciple, as a matter of right, ani trom a fund 10 the creation hoped that those who disapprove of the past, and dis. of which it had itself contributeri its fair propertion. sent froin what is proposed for the future, will feel it their Surely there could be nothing derogatory in that. As duty to (lirect their attention to it, as they must be sensi. matter's now stand, the States themselves, in their sove. ble that, unless some fixed rule for the action of the Fe. reign character, are not intrequenly petitioners at the deral Government in this respect is established, the course bar of the Federal Legislature for such allowances out of now attempted to be arrested will be again resorted to. the national treasury as it may comport with their plea. Any mode which is calculated to give the greatest degree sure or sense of duty to bestow upon them. It cannot of effect and harmony to our legislation upon the sub. require argument to prove which of the two courses is ject--which shall best serve to keep the movements of must compatible with the efiiciency or respectability of the Federal Government within the sphere intended by the State Governments.
those who modelled and those who adopted it--which But all these are inalters for discussion and dispassion. shall lead to the extinguishment of the national debt in ate consideration. That the desired adjustment would the shortest period, and impose the lightest burdens up. be attended wit, dithculty, affords no reason why it should on our constituents, shall receive from me a cordial and not be aitempted. The effective operation of such mo- firm support. tives woulü have prevented the adoption of the Constitu. Among the objects of great national concern, I cannot tion under which we have so long livell, and under the omit to press again upon your attention that part of the benign influence of which our beloved country has so Constitution which regulates the election of President signally prospered. The framers of that sacred instru. and Vice President. The necessity for its amendment is ment had greater difficulties to overcome, and they did made so clear to my mind by the observation of is evils,
The patriotism of the people, directed and by the many able discussions which they have elicit. by a deep couviction of the importance of the Union, pro ed on the floor of Congress and elsewhere, that I should duced mutual coucession and reciprocal forbearance. be wanting to my duty were I to withhold another ex. Strict right was merged in a spirit of compromise, and the pression of my deep solicitude upon the subject. Our result has consecrated their disinterested devotion to the system fortunately contemplates a recurrence to first prin.
ciples, differing, in this respect, froin all that have pre commendation, with an increased confidence that its ceded it, and securing it, I trust, equally against the de adoption will strengthen those checks by which the Concay and the commutions which have marked the prostitution designed to secure the independence of each gress of other Governments. Our fellow-citizens, 100, department of the Government, and promoie the health who, in proportion to their love of liberty, keep a stea ly tul and equitable administration of all the trusts which it eye upon the means of sustaining it, do not require to be has created. The agent most likely to contravene this reminded of the duty they owe to liemselves to remedy design of the Constitution is the Chief Magistrate. In all essential defects in so vital a part of their system. order, particularly, that his appointinent may, as far as While they are sensible that every evil attendant upon possible, be placed beyond the reach of any improper its operation is not necessarily indicative of a bad organi- influences; in order that he may approach the solemn rezation, but may proceed from temporary causes, yet the sponsibilities of the highest office in the gift of a free habitual presence, or even a single instance of evils people, uncommitted to any other course than the strict which can be clearly traced to an organic clefect, will not, line of constitutional duty; and that the securities for I trust, be overlooked through a too scrupulous venera- this independence may be rendered as strong as the na. tion for the work of their ancestors. The Constitution ture of power, and the weakness of its possessor, will was an experiment committed to the virule and intell.- admit, I cannot too earnestly invite your attention to the gence of the great mass of our countrymen, in whose propriety of promoting such an amendment of the Conranks the framers of it themselves were to perform the stitution as will render him ineligible after one term of part of patriotic observation and scrutiny; and if they service. have passed from the stage of existence with an increas. It gives me pleasure to announce to Congress that the ed confidence in its general adaptation to our condition, benevolent policy of the Government, steadily pursued we should learn from authority so high the duty of forti- for nearly thirty years, in relation to the removal of the fying the points in it which ime proves to be exposed, Indians beyond the white settlements, is approaching rather than be deterred from approaching them by the to a happy consummation. Two important tribes have suggestions of fear, or the dictales of misplaced rever- accepted the provision made for their removal at the last
session of Congress; and it is believed that their examA provision which does not secure to the people a di- ple will induce the remaining tribes, also, to seek the rect choice of their Chief Magistrate, but has a tendency same obvious advantages. to defeat their will, presented to my mind such an incon The consequences of a speedy removal will be im. sistency with the general spirit of our institutions, that I portant to the United States, to individual States, and to was induced to suggest for your consideration the substi- the la:lians themselves. The pecuniary advantages which tute which appeared to me at the same time the most it promises to the Government are the least of its relikely to correct the evil and to meet the views of our commendations. It puts an end to all possible danger constituents. The most mature reflection since has added of collision between the authorities of the General and strength to the belief that the best interests of our coun. State Governments, on account of the Indians. It will try require the speedy adoption of some plan calculated place a dense and civilized population in large tracts of to effect this end. A contingency which sometimes pla- country now occupied by a few savage hunters. By ces it in the power of a single member of the House of opening the whole territory between Tennessee on the Representatives to decide an election of so high and so- north, and Louisiana on the south, to the 'settlement of lemn a character, is unjust to the people, and becomes, the whites, it will incalculably strengthen the southwest. when it occurs, a source of embarrassment to the indivi- eru frontier, and render the adjacent States strong cluals thus brought into power, and a cause of distrust of enough to repel future invasion without remote aid. It the representative body. Liable as the confederacy is, will relieve the whole State of Mississippi, and the from its great extent, to parties founded upon sectional western part of Alabama, of Indian occupancy, and ena. interests, and to a corresponding multiplication of candi- ble those States to advance rapidly in population, wealth, dates for the Presidency, the tendency of the constitu- and power. It will separate ihe Indians from immediate tional reference to the House of Representatives, is, to contact with settlements of wbites; free them from the devolve the election upon that body in almost every in power of the States ; enable them to pursue happiness stance, and, whatever choice may then be made among in their own way, and under their own rude institutions ; the candidates thus presented to them, to swell the influ. will retard the progress of decay, which is lessening their ence of particular interests lv a degree inconsistent with numbers ; and perhaps cause them gradually, under the the general good. The consequences of this feature of protection of the Government, and thuough the influence the Constitution appear far more threatening to the peace of good counsels, to cast off their savage habits, and be. aud integrity of the Union than any which I can conceivecome an interesting, civilized, and Christian community. as likely to result from ihe simple legislative action of the These consequences, some of them so certain, and the Federal Governinent.
rest so probable, make the complete execution of the It was a leading object with the framers of the Con- plan sanctioned by Congress at their last session an object stitution to keep as separate as possible the action of inuch solicitude. of the Legislative and Executive branches of the Go. Toward the aborigines of the country no one can invernment. To secure this object, nothing is more dulge a more friendly feeling than myself, or would go essential than to preserve the former from the temp. furtier in attempting to reclaim them from their wander. tations of private interest, and, therefore, so to directing habits, and make them a lappy and prosperous peo. the patronage of the latter as not to permit such tenp-ple. I have endeavored to impress upon them my own tations to be offered. Experience abundantly demon- sulein convictions of the duties and powers of the Ge. strates that every precaution in this respect is a valuable neral Governinent in relation to the State authorities. safeguard of liberty, and one which my reflections upon For ins joistice of the laws passed by the States within the tendencies of our system incline me to think should the scope of their reserved powers, they are not respon. be maile still stronger.
It was for this reason that, in sible to this Governinent. As individuals, we may enterconnexion with an amendment of the Constitution, re-lain and express our opinions of their acts; but, as a Go. moving all intermediate agency in the chvice of the Pre vernment, we nave as little right to control them as we sident, I recommended some restrictions upon the re-eli-bauve to prescribe laws to foreign nations, gibility of that other, and upon the tenure of ottices ge With a twil understanding of the subject, the Choctaw nerally. The reason still exists; and I renew the re-land Chuckusa w trives have, with great una imity, deter
mined to avail themselves of the liberal offers presented tory, to pay the expense of his removal, and support him a by the act of Congress, and have agreed to remove be- year in his new abole ? How many thousands of our own yond the Mississippi river. Treaties have heen made people would gladly embrace the opportunity of removwith them, which, in due season, will be submitted for ing to the west on such conditions! If the offers made consideration. In negotiating these treaties, they were to the Indians were exten led to them, they would be made to understand their true condition ; and they have hailed with gratitude and joy. preferred maintaining their independence in the Western And is it supposed that the wandering savage has a forests to submitting to the laws of the States in which they stronger attachment to his home, than the settled, civinow reside. These treaties being probably the last which lized Christian? Is it more afflicting to him to leave the will ever be made with them, are characterized by great graves of his fathers, than it is to our brothers and child liberality on the part of the Government. They give the dren? Rightly considered, the policy of the General Indians a liberal sum in consideration of their removal, and Government towards the red man is not only liberal but comfortable subsistence on their arrival at their new homes. generous. Ile is unwilling to submit to the laws of the If it be their real interest to maintain a separate existence, States, and ningle with their population. To save him they will there be at liberty to do so without the incon from this alternative, or perhaps utter annihilation, the veniences and vexations to which they would ainavoida. General Government kindly offers him a new home, and bly have been subject in Alabama and Mississippi. proposes to pay the whole expense of his removal and
Humanity has often wept over the fate of the abori. settlement. gines of this country; and philanthropy has been long In the consummation of a policy originating at an ear. busily employed in devising means to avert it. But its ly period, and steadily pursued by every administration progress has never for a moment been arrested ; and one within the present century—so just to the States, and so by one have many powerful tribes disappeared from the generous to the Indians, the Executive feels it has a right earth. To follow to the tomb the last of his race, and to to expect the co-operation of Congress, and of all good tread on the graves of extinct nations, excites melancho. and disinterested men. The States, moreover, have a ly, reflections. But true philanthropy reconciles the right to cleinand it. It was substantially a part of the com. mind to these vicissitudes, as it does to the extinction of pact which made them members of our confederacy. one generation to make room for another. In the mo. With Georgia, there is an express contract ; with the numents and fortresses of an unknown people, spread new States, an implied one, of equal obligation. Why, over the extensive regions of the West, we behold the in authorizing Ohio, Indiana, Illinois, Missouri, Mississipmemorials of a once powerful race, which was extermi- pi, and Alabama, to form constitutions, and become sepa nated, or has disappeared, to make room for the existing late Stites, did Congress include within their limits exsavage tribes.
Nor is there any thing in this, which, tensive tracts of Indian lands, and, in some instances, upon a comprehensive view of the general interests of powerful Indian tribes ? Was it not understood by both the human race, is to be regretted. Philanthropy could parties that the power of the States was to be co-extennot wish to see this continent restored to the condition sive with their limits, and that, with all convenient des. in which it was found by our forefathers. What good patch, the General Government should extinguish the Inman would prefer a country covered with forests, and dian title, and remove every obstruction to the complete ranged by a few thousand savages, to our extensive re jurisdiction of the State Governments over the soil ? public, studded with cities, towns, and prosperous farms; Probably not one of those States would have accepted a embellished with all the improvements which art can de separate existence-certainly it would never have been vise, or industry execute; occupied by more than twelve granted by Congressmad it been understood that they millions of happy people, and filled with all the blessings were to be contined forever to those small portions of of liberty, civilization, and religion !
their nominal territory, the Indian title to which had at The present policy of the Government is but a conti- the time been extinguishe:I. nuation of the same progressive change, by a milder It is, therefore, a duty which this Government owes to process. The tribes which occupied the countries now the new States, to extinguish, as soon as possible, the Inconstituting the Eastern States were annihilated, or have dian tiile to all lands which Congress themselves have inmelted away, to make room for the whites. The waves cluded within their limits. When this is done, the due of population and civilization are rolling to the West-ties of the General Government in relation to the States ward ; and we now propose to acquire the countries oc- and Indians within their limits are at an end. The In. cupied by the red men of the South and West, by a fair dians may leave the State or not, as they choose. The exchange, and, at the expense of the U. States, to send purchase of their lands does not alter, in the least, their them to a land where their existence may be prolonged, personal relations with the State Government. No act and perhaps made perpetual. Doubtless it will be painful of the General Government has ever been deemed necesto leave the graves of their fathers; but what do they more sary to give the States jurisdiction over the persons of the than our ancestors did,or than our children are now doing? Indians. That they possess, by virtue of their sovereign To better their condition in an unknown land, our fore- power within their own limits, in as full a manner before fathers left all that was dear in earthly objects. Our child as after the purchase of the Indian lands ; nor can this dren, by thousands, yearly leave the land of their birth, to Government add to or diminish it. seek new homes in distant regions. Does humanity weep May we not hope, therefore, that all good citizens and none at these painful separations from every thing, animate and more zealously ihan those who think the Indians oppres. inanimate, with which the young heart has become en- sed by subjection to the laws of the States, will unite in twined ! Far from it. It is rather a source of joy that attempting to open the eyes of those children of the our country affords scope where our young population forest to their true condition, and, by a speedy removal, may range unconstrained in body or in mind, developing to relieve them from the evils, real or imaginary, present the power and faculties of man in their highest perfec. or prospective, with which they may be supposed to be tion. These remove hundreds, and almost thousands of threatened. miles, at their own expense, purchase the lands they oc. Among the numerous causes of congratulation, the cupy, and support themselves at their new home from condition of our impost revenue deserves special menthe moment of their arrival. Can it be cruel in this Gotion, inasmuch as it promises the means of extinguishing vernment, when, by events which it cannot control, the the public debt sooner than was anticipated, and furnishIndian is macle discontented in his ancient home, to pur- es a strong illustration of the practical effects of the precbase his lands, to give him a new and extensive terri- sent tarift upon our commercial interests.