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Mar 4, 1836.]
Defence of the Frontiers.
would wish to know, however, why General Gaines had made this requisition for more men. It had been stated that the Government were in possession of all the facts; but he could not think so. He does not intend to rush. down at once upon the Mexican leader—considering him as a monster out of the pale of humanity. Such could not be his intention. Was there not something else? Had not a communication from Santa Anna to the Camanche Indians been intercepted? If so, the President is in possession of the fact. We cannot interfere in Texas: it is beyond our reach. But if this ruthless desolator of that province has instigated the Indians to cross the frontier and descend upon our settlements, we should hold him responsible for every drop of blood that may be shed. If such a movement is contemplated --if it is taking place--then, after the necessary information, let the Senate act. He agreed with the Senator from Louisiana that an increase of our military was necessary. Mr. BENTON felt himself called upon to take the floor again, and to protest against the erroneous character which gentlemen were attributing to this bill. There seemed to be a design to get up a new panic—a war panic—and, having lost the chance of the French war panic, to try to get up a Mexican war panic. We could hear of nothing but of the dangers of war, and the duties of neutrality; as if this bill was to make war and to violate neutrality. People at a distance might be excited by this new panic, as they had been by so many former ones; for it seemed that panic tactics was the standing order of the day now, and that all attempts to influence the public mind were to be directed, not to the understandings, but to the terrors of the people. Persons at a distance may be excited by this fresh ghost of a panic; but every person here knew, and the bills and reports upon the tables showed the fact, that this plan for increasing the army grew out of the state of our own affairs; that it was a northwestern, and not a southwestern measure; and that it was begun before General Gaines had gone to the Texas frontier, and before Santa Anna had left the capital of Montezuma. All this was known here; still, people at a distance might be induced to believe that the proposed increase of the army was to cover a premeditated design to make war upon Mexico and to violate the laws of neutrality. This they might be made to believe, and thereby be excited against the administration; but it should not be so without being told better. They should know that the 250,000 Indians accumulated upon the western and northwestern frontier" was the origin of the movement, and the Texan difficulties nothing but an incident. General Gaines's letter, calling on the Governors of States for volunteers, was only published in this city on yesterday; the bill which he moved to take up was reported six weeks ago, and originated under a resolution adopted on the 2d of February. This statement should satisfy everybody—should dispel the panic attempted to be got up—and show that the defence of our borders and the preservation of our neutrality were the sole objects in view. General Gaines has reason to believe that our Indians have been tampered with; he communicates what he has heard to the Government here, and to the Governors of the neighboring States; and while these circumstances justify him in calling for volunteers, yet if it all turns out to be unfounded, if Texas is pacified, and Santa Anna returns, still we shall go on with our bill. We shall go on demanding an increased force upon our frontiers, and, if we cannot get it from the general Government, the citizens will have to take measures to protect themselves. Fifty thousand Indian warriors within striking distance of our frontiers cannot be an object of indifference or disregard to us. Here is another evil from this scheme of dividing sur
plus revenue. To save the money for distribution, it is necessary to attack the objects to which it ought to be applied; and, where the object cannot be attacked, to substitute an erroneous one for it. To save the surplus, then, for division, is the cause of this attempt to raise a panic about the violation of neutrality and the invasion of Mexico. But the boasted surplus is itself an illusion, a mere temporary stoppage of money in the Treasury, which ought long since to have been in a course of expenditure. Almost every branch of the public service was suffering for want of money; many branches of the service were suspended entirely for want of money. The fortifications have been stopped for two seasons. The mint is languishing for want of means to perfect some machinery. The Quartermaster's Department—that most important branch of service at all times, and especially at this time, when supplies should go to two frontiers—that Department is without a dollar. Clerks and salaried officers are borrowing money at usury to support their families, because they cannot draw their pay. More than that; workmen, day laborers in the service of the United States, are without the means of going to market. He (Mr. B.) had been informed of laboring men, working for the United States, who had not had meat on their tables for three weeks. They could not draw their pay; and why not? Because politicians had taken it into their heads to make a surplus, and for that purpose had stopped all the appropriation bills, and dammed up the money in the Treasury, to make a tempting mass for distribution, and dubbed it surplus; when the fact was, it was no surplus, but a mere temporary accumulation caused by the delay of the appropriation bills, and much of it long since due.
The holy scriptures (Mr. B. said) contained a curse against those who did not pay the laborer his hire; and what are we to say of politicians who, to tempt the people with an illusory distribution, are stopping the action of the Government, preventing the laborer from being paid, and claiming for distribution what ought to be in a course of expenditure? When the appropriation bills are passed—and they cannot be delayed long—it will be seen that every dollar of this boasted surplus will be wanted for the public service, and that the public have been the dupes of a pernicious deception, in being told that there were more than thirty millions which could not be expended, and therefore must be divided. And this was the secret (Mr. B. said) of the extraordinary process of passing the distribution bill first; it could not be passed, if it waited till the appropriations were made; for then it would be seen that the inexhaustible surplus was all gone.
Mr. BUCHANAN wished to say a few words on this question. He had no doubt but that the Government of the United States, in regard to Mexico, had pursued, and would pursue, the course which had been sanctioned by all its experience in relation to questions of this kind. One principle had been established in the political history of the country; had grown with its growth, and strengthened with its strength; and, without knowing what the President had done or would do in this matter, he had no doubt but he would strictly adhere to that established principle in our institutions, never to interfere with the internal policy or domestic concerns of foreign nations. The famous proclamation of neutrality of General Washington first asserted that principle, and to it our Government had always adhered. We consider (said Mr. B.) all nations “enemies in war, and in peace, friends.”
In regard to Mexico, he looked upon Santa Anna as a usurper. The federal constitution, established for the republic of Mexico, and which Texas, as a part of that republic, had sworn to support, had been trampled on by him; and Texas, in his eyes, and in the eyes of all
mankind, was justified in rebelling against him. Whether the Texans acted consistently with a true policy at the time, in declaring their independence, he should not discuss, nor should he decide; but, as a man, and an American, he should be rejoiced to see them successful in maintaining their liberties, and he trusted in God they would be so. He would, however, leave them to rely on their own bravery, with every hope and prayer that the God of battles would shield them with his protection. If Santa Anna excited the Indians within our territory to deeds of massacre and blood; if he should excite a spirit among them which he cannot restrain; and if, in consequence, the blood of our women and children on the frontiers shall flow, he undoubtedly ought to be held responsible. Mr. B. saw a strong necessity for sending a force to the frontiers, not only to restrain the natural disposition of the Indians to deeds of violence, but because they could place no confidence in a man who had so little command of his temper, who had shown so cruel and sanguinary a disposition as Santa Anna had. He was for having a force speedily sent to that frontier, and a force of mounted men or dragoons, as suggested by the Senator from Missouri, [Mr. LINN;] but he was against interfering in the war now raging in Texas, unless an attack should be made on us. If it was left for him to decide which bill a preference should be given to by the Senate, he would first take up the bill providing for this additional force for the protection of the frontiers; but he had been instructed by an authority which he was bound to respect and obey, and he must therefore vote to take up the land bill. He should vote with the warmest friends of that bill in its favor, till it was either carried through or defeated. To-day or to-morrow the land bill would be finally disposed of; it now stood in the way of every thing else; and he would then be for proceeding with the appropriation bills as rapidly as possible. He should have said nothing about instructions, had not this question of preference been brought up. After the decision of the land bill, he should give his hearty support to carry through the bills necessary for the defence of the country, with as much expedition as possible. Mr. CLAYTON stated that he should vote for the land bill in preference to this bill, because the former would have still to pass the other House, while the bill now asked to be considered had passed that House. As far as he had seen of this bill, he was favorably disposed towards it. But he was desirous to have a day or two to consider of the amendments. He did not wish it to be said of him that he had thrown any difficulty in the way of the public defence, and he only desired so much delay as would enable him to become acquainted with the character of the amendments. Mr. LINN said that gentlemen were much mistaken in of that this proposition to increase the army grew out of a desire to increase unnecessarily the expenditures of the Government, or out of the state of af. fairs in Texas, or with a view to a war with Mexico. It was a calm, deliberate proposition of his own, resulting from his knowledge of Indian character, and the dangers to which his constituents were exposed. He had consulted the Secretary of War, and many of his friends, on this subject, and on the 2d of February he intro. duced the following resolutions. 1. “Resolved, That the Secretary at War inform the Senate what number of Indians now occupy the frontier on the southwest, west, north, and the northeast of the United States, and what number it is probable will be transferred from the States and Territories to the frontiers of the United States. 2. “Resolved, That the Secretary at War also inform the Senate whether, in his opinion, the present milita.
ry force of the United States is sufficient to guard the fortifications on the seaboard, and at the same time give protection to the inhabitants residing in the States and Territories bordering on the Indian frontier; if not, what force will, in his opinion, be necessary to such protection.”
In reply to this call, the Secretary at War returned an interesting and elaborate reply, on the 8th of March. He was decidedly of opinion that great danger existed from the Indians to the frontier States, and that it was the duty of Congress to protect them against aggressions, by having an adequate force stationed there, sufficient to look down opposition, and prevent bloodshed. He said he felt deeply for the Texans; and, great as the calamities of war were, he almost desired that Mexico would give us sufficient reason to embark in one; and he was not sure but they had placed themselves out of the pale of law by the assassination of Colonel Fannin and his followers.
The question was then taken, and the motion of Mr. BENton was negatived.
The bill to appropriate for a limited time the proceeds of the sales of the public lands among the States, and to grant land to certain States, was taken up; when Messrs. WRIGHT and BENTON severally addressed the Senate in speeches of some length in opposition to the bill; after which the question was taken, “Shall this bill pass?” and it was decided in the affirmative: Yeas 25, nays 20, as follows: Yeas--Messrs. Black, Buchanan, Clay, Clayton, Crittenden, Davis, Ewing of Ohio, Goldsborough, Hendricks, Kent, Knight, Leigh, McKean, Mangum, Naudain, Nicholas, Porter, Prentiss, Preston, Robbins, Southard, Swift, Tomlinson, Webster, White—25. NAys—Messrs. Benton, Calhoun, Cuthbert, Ewing of Illinois, Grundy, Hill, Hubbard, King of Alabama, King of Georgia, Linn, Moore, Morris, Niles, Rives, Robinson, Ruggles, Shepley, Tallmadge, Walker, Wright—20. The Senate then adjourned.
Thu Rs DAY, MAY 5. LAND BILL.
Mr. EWING rose to move a correction of the Journal of yesterday’s proceedings. He observed, on hearing it read by the Secretary, that the yeas and nays on the final passage of the land bill were stated to have been ordered on his motion. Now, as he made no such motion, he wished the Journal to be so corrected that the yeas and nays might not appear to have been ordered at his instance.
Mr. HUBBARD felt confident that the yeas and nays were ordered, but on whose motion he would not pretend to say. He was under the impression that they were ordered shortly after the bill was ordered to be engrossed for a third reading.
Mr. CLAY believed that the yeas and nays were not called for, but were taken under an impression that they had been ordered. He was certain, at all events, that they were not ordered on the motion of his friend from Ohio, who, he was certain, had reasons, as well as himself, for not calling for them, in reference to a gentleman opposed to the bill, who was absent.
M. WEBSTER suggested that the correction could be made by striking out the words “on motion by Mr. Ew ING,” so as to let it appear on the Journal that the yeas and nays were ordered by one fifth of the members present.
The correction, as proposed by Mr. Ewing, was then ordered.
May 5, 1836.]
Duties on Hemp.
DUTIES ON HEMP. The following resolution, offered yesterday by Mr. Clar, was taken up for consideration: Resolved, That the Committee on Manufactures be directed to inquire into the expediency of so amending the existing laws as to subject all hemp exported into the United States from any place whatsoever, to the same §. as Russian hemp may be liable to pay for the time eing. Mr. CLAY stated that there was in the course of trade a habit of introducing Bengal hemp, and some other kinds under different denominations, free from duty, according to a construction (and, as he thought, an erroneous one) of the Secretary of the Treasury. He wished to guard against this evasion of the laws, and have it subjected to the same duties that Russian hemp was. It came into competition with the flax and manufactured hemp of this country; whereas that of Russia, so far as the rigging of vessels was concerned, did not interfere with our dew-rotted hemp; because this last, not absorbing tar, and from other causes, was not calculated for rigging. A measure had been proposed for allowing a drawback upon Russian hemp when exported to foreign countries. Though he came from a hemp-growing section, he should offer no objection to it: on the contrary, he would give it his vote. His only object in rising, however, was to ask for a consideration of this resolution now, to prevent any further evasion of existing laws. Mr. WALKER expressed a hope that it would be put on record that the day after the Senator from Kentucky and his friends had obtained their victory, in the passage of the land bill, that Senator had offered a resolution to increase the tariff. He did not intend to oppose the resolution of inquiry, but he wished the fact to be placed on record. (o Mr. CLAY replied that he had no objection to have the fact recorded in any book of record whatever, provided that, when recorded, no motion should afterwards be entertained for expunging it. He wished also to have the fact accurately stated. This proposition was not made, as stated by the Senator from Mississippi, on the day after the passage of the land bill. It was made yesterday—on the very day of the passage of that measure; and it came up now in the regular course of business. Neither is it true that it is a proposition to increase the duties; it is merely to prevent an evasion of existing laws. Whenever it should come up for discussion, he should be happy to listen to the arguments of the gentleman against its expediency, and should no doubt be convinced by them. He would advise that Senator, however, and those who acted with him, if they wished to avoid an increase of the tariff, to stop where they were; to make no more extravagant appropriations; to pursue no longer the course they had adopted. Ten millions for the Navy, and fifteen millions for the War Department! Did any one believe that an augmentation of the tariff was not inevitable, if this wasteful expenditure was countenanced and sustained? Let the gentleman and those who, with him, have the power, remove the public treasure from these miserable deposite banks. By following his advice, wholesome as it was, they might remove the causes of their real or pretended alarm. He did not expect any discussion, however, on the adoption of a mere resolution of inquiry, much less to be called upon to reply to a charge of this kind. Mr. WALKER said it was his opinion, when he made his former remarks, that the resolution of the Senator from Kentucky had been offered this morning; but whether the fact was so or not, it had no bearing on his observations; still the resolution had been offered after the victory had been obtained by the friends of the land bill, because that victory was achieved when the ques
tion on the engrossment of the bill was carried. The fact was now allowed by the Senator from Kentucky, that an increase of the tariff was inevitable, unless we abandon the fortifications--unless we abandon the constitution and the defences of the country. If we are to be involved in a war, our soldiers must march to an undefended frontier to shed their blood, instead of having the assistance of fortifications, by which blood would be saved. He denied that there was any such sum appropriated for defences as by the land bill, which gave thirty or forty millions away; the first fourteen millions to be drawn out on the 1st of July, which would have a greater tendency to render an increase of the tariff necessary than the operation of the land bill, which threw the Government for its resources on the tariff alone. Since the land bill had passed, it would be necessary to increase the tariff. If this was a mere evasion of the law, there could be no legislation necessary: the duties could be recovered by process of law. We shall hear more of these evasions, if we adopt this resolution, and act according to its spirit. This is the plan by which the tariff is to be increased. We shall have evasions on sugar, evasions on every article of produce. There is another measure, also, which is to be carried into effect by means of the land bill. These miserable banks, as the Senator calls them, are to be put down. If the people can be made to believe that the money is unsafe in these banks, the effect will be to bring about that very insolvency which is foretold. On the ist of July, fourteen millions are required by the land bill to be drawn out of the Treasury; and a distrust is to be scattered among the people, which will tend to put down these banks. Mr. CLAY said he regretted being called upon to say one word more. He did not know to what he was indebted for the honor—an honor very often tendered him—of being replied to and opposed by the Senator from Mississippi. He will, for the future, however, allow me to use my own language, and not put words into my mouth which I have not used. He had made no avowal of a wish or intention to increase the tariff; he had merely said that, in the contingency of such an extravagant course being continued in, such an increase would inevitably take place. If, however, the affairs of this Government were wisely administered, there would be no necessity of augmenting the existing duties; on the contrary, a reduction in them might very properly take place. We were told by one of the wisest of the numerous wise heads that have been in the Treasury, that fifteen millions per annum was required for our current wants; and now seventeen millions was proposed by the Senator from New York. Nor was that all. Lieutenants in the army, subaltern officers, and others, had offered their suggestions; and thirty or forty millions was to be appropriated for the defences of the country! Magical words! Who was not anxious for the safety of the country? But were we to be thus deceived? In England, at this very moment, there was no city of consequence—neither Liverpool, Manchester, Birmingham, nor York—which was fortified, or had even the appearance of a fort. And why? Because they trusted to their navy for the preservation of the great interests of that country. Gentlemen, however, were not satisfied with an appropriation of ten millions for the navy; they wanted the whole line of coast fortified, so that, as his colleague had observed the other day, gun for gun might be heard from one extremity of the coast to the other--a measure got up and advocated for the one and only purpose of preserving in these deposite banks, and keeping from distribution, the public money-money which belonged to the country at large, and for which, if a demand was made, the consequence would be a failure to meet it.
He regretted exceedingly, and knew not why it was, that the gentleman from Mississippi had assumed this an-tag-o-nis-ti-cal (he believed that was the fashionable phrase) position towards him. He was willing, at all times, and on all occasions, to acknowledge his own inferiority to that gentleman. The triumph was his. Let him be at ease, then; and when he quoted other avowals, quote this also. Mr. WALKER replied that he had only a single remark to made, and that merely in reference to the concluding observations of the gentleman. He was not the first to commence this warfare. The Senator from Kentucky, in a speech of great eloquence and ability, had opposed a measure of his. As to mental powers, he readily, not in a spirit of irony, but with the most perfect sincerity, admitted that Senator's infinite superiority to him. Mr. CLAY said that perhaps it would be better at once to enter into a treaty of peace and amity with the gentleman. He would give him a carte blanche; support any measure of his, unless it should happen to be in behalf of the squatters--he could not stand that. The resolution was then agreed to.
GENERAL APPROPRIATION BILL.
On motion of Mr. WEBSTER, the Senate proceeded to consider the bill making appropriations for the civil o diplomatic expenses of Government for the year 36. The amendment making an appropriation of $2,500 to enable the Secretary to distribute, as ordered by a resolution of the Senate, a compilation of documents relative to land titles, being under consideration— Mr. BENTON moved to strike out the provision for giving one set to each Senator. He thought it had been considered as settled, for two sessions past, that they were done with giving themselves books at the public expense. It had been stated in the other House by Mr. Johnson, of Tennessee, that it "would take about one thousand dollars to each member, to put him on the same footing, with respect to books, as the old members. He was aware that it was an exceedingly ungracious task to oppose giving the same books to the new members that had been given to the old; but the thing had been commenced two years ago, by his friend from Geor; [Mr. KING, J who deserved the thanks of the country or calling their attention to one of the grossest abuses. This was one of the greatest impositions that had ever come to his notice, with the exception, perhaps, of one enormous and flagrant abuse—a work that was to go on for years, to an unknown extent, and then to be distributed to those who were members of the 22d Congress. He did not know whether it was proposed to give copies to the legal representatives of such of the members as have died; but it was certain that they would, under the provision of the resolutions, have a right to them. They might go to the assignees of these members; and it had been stated by the Senator from Georgia, [Mr. KING, J that a member of Congress had sold to a bookseller in this place, for ten dollars, his share of that which was to cost the United States hundreds of thousands of dollars. Mr. B. here spoke of the uselessness of the work proposed to be distributed, and the shameful waste of public money in printing such a mass of worthless matter. The principal part of the publication related to the preliminary proceedings in investigating the titles to lands, which were not worthy of preservation, as every thing relating to land titles was merged in the patents which had since issued. There were, Mr. B. said, in an office in this city, about five hundred volumes of documents, which he apprehended cost the Government far beyond $1,000, and he should consider them a dear bargain at $100. He had, it was true, voted at first for
some of these books, till his attention was called to the subject; but since then, he had strongly resisted all such appropriations. He presumed, as the books had been printed and paid for, that they must be distributed; but he was opposed to that part of the distribution which referred to their worthy selves, and he would therefore move to strike out that part of the amendment which gives one copy to each member of Congress. Mr. WEBSTER said the distribution would be made in the usual way. The question involved in the amendment was merely whether they should be distributed, as they were already ordered and paid for, or whether they should remain in the lumber-room. He hoped the amendment would not prevail. Mr. BENTON replied that they did well to appropriate money for the transportation of these books, for whoever they were to be sent to would, cheap as transportation now was, hardly be willing to pay for getting such useless lumber. He had, therefore, no objection to pay for sending them away; but he was opposed to giving them to members of Congress. He would rather give them away to anybody that would take them. They might be useful to the grocers, if the leaves had not been cut; but as it was, they were hardly worth having to wrap a herring up in. Such had been the enormity of the abuse in printing worthless documents, that he had been told by the servants of the boarding-houses that the mass printed during the panic session had glutted the market, and that their perquisites had fallen to about two cents per pound. The gentleman near him smiled at what he said; but he would tell him that if he would take his little children to a shoe store and buy a pair of shoes, he would find that they would be wrapped up in public documents. Buy whatever he would in any of the stores of this city, he would find his purchases wrapped up in papers that had been printed by order of Congress. Indeed, such had been the profusion with which these public documents had been printed, that they had greatly depreciated even as wrapping-paper; there was no doubt of there being a surplus there. If no other disposition could be made of these documents, they might put them to the same use that the Ottoman conqueror did the books of the Alexandria library—distribute them among the public booths, to be used as fuel. There were public booths in this city, where these documents might be found useful in the same way. Mr. B. was opposed, out and out, to giving these documents to the members of Congress, and he therefore asked the yeas and nays on his motion. Mr. HILL said the number of volumes was five, and they were not worth, for anybody's use, the trouble of carrying them home. There were, at a former session, 850 additional copies ordered out of the contingent fund, by a simple resolution offered by Mr. Poindexter, and the cost of which amounted to $57,000. They were made up of mere notes taken in relation to the public lands, and he believed were not even of any value to the Territories; and if this was not extravagance, he did not know what was. Mr. BENTON here read extracts from one of the volumes, taken at random, he said, from the pile, and opened in the middle, which were a fair sample of the whole publication. There never was, he said, a grosser imposition practised than was done in the publication of this work. Here was a sample of the five volumes, and the whole related to land titles thirty years ago, which were all merged in the patents, the only titles now necessary to be looked at. Mr. FWING of Ohio had not examined these documents to ascertain their value, but he had found some of a similar kind very useful and valuable as books of reserence to members, on the subject of public lands. Mr. WEBSTER observed, that this was a subject of May 5, 1836.]
which he professed to have no knowledge. Whether these books were useful or not, could better be judged of by gentlemen coming from the States where the public lands were. All he rose to say was, that he thought it unnecessary to delay the appropriation bill in questions of this kind, and that the best way would be to reject the amendment at once. Mr. WALKER did not concur with the Senator from Missouri in his opinion as to the value of these books. As books of reference, he had found them very useful while on the Select Committee; and although there might be a great deal in them that was not worth printi:g, yet he did not think that he could have got on without them. As regarded their distribution, he thought, with his friend from Missouri, that they ought not to be given to Senators individually, though it would be proper to give them to them in their official characters, to be retained while they were in the Senate, and to be handed over to their successors on leaving it. • Mr. KING of Alabama thought, at the time the resolution was adopted, that they would be paying for a useless work. Some of the matter contained in the publication might be useful, but a great deal of it certainly was not so. A great deal of it had been printed before in another work, as the Senator from Missouri had well observed, and they had therefore to pay double for the same matter. But the time had gone by, when it would be profitable to discuss this question--they had got the work; and the question was, what were they to do with it? As regarded the distribution, he was opposed on principle to the giving books to Senators. If the work was at all useful, let all the copies, said Mr. K., be thrown into the library of Congress. Mr. BENTON referred the Senator from Mississippi to two publications—one being a compilation of documents relative to the public lands, by Matthew St. Clair Clarke, and the other a work now going on by Gales & Seaton, in which the Senator would find all the information he wanted in a more compendious form, without being cumbered with the mass of obsolete and useless matter that loaded this publication. He wished the gentleman to be informed that the type set up on this work was taken in the form already set up from another office; so that the Senate was paying for the same work twice. Let the gentleman refer to the collections relating to the public lands now going on by Gales & Seaton, and he would find all the information he wanted in a more compendious form. Mr. WEBSTER wished the Senate to negative the whole amendment. He did not wish to be involved in a debate on the printing and distribution of documents, to the delay of the most important appropriation bill. Mr. LINN could not entirely concur with his colleague as to the value of these documents. Although much useless matter might have been printed, yet he thought they contained a great deal of useful information. Mr. BLACK said the only way in which these books were valuable, was, to Committees on Private Land Claims; when claims were presented, by turning to these books, the proceedings had in relation to them could be found, and attempts at imposition could be detected. Mr. WRIGHT said, after the expression given by the Senate, he would vote for the bill as amended by the Senator from Missouri. He would, however, state a fact within his knowledge, which was, that three of these volumes were mere transcripts, word for word, and letter for letter, of three other volumes; and he remembered very well, when the resolution authorizing their publication was offered, (which he supposed, at the time, was for some temporary publication, and never dreamed that the whole expense would amount to $500; and never knew of the enormous expense incurred until his attention was drawn to it by an estimate made in the
other House,) the Secretary of the Senate had complained that they encumbered his room. The books were already purchased, and the lumber was on their hands; and the only question now was, whether they should distribute it. Mr. BENTon's motion was then adopted; and the question recurring on the amendment of the committee— Mr. KING of Georgia observed, that he had already said so much in relation to the printing of books, that he did not think it necessary to say any thing now, further than that he agreed with his friend from Missouri as to the utter worthlessness of these books. If useful at all, they could only be so to the Committee on Private Land Claims; and it had been well observed, that they might obtain all the information that was in these documents and in other publications that had been made by order of the Senate, in a much more compendious form. He did not want any of them to be on his table; and he would give them away to anybody that would take them. Mr. KNIGHT moved to amend the amendment by providing for the sending of one copy of the publication to the Historical Society of Rhode Island, and one copy to a college in that State. Mr. K. said it seemed that these books were of no value to anybody, and yet they were extremely loath to part with them. He thought they would increase in value as they increased in age. Mr. BUCHANAN did not care much about the distribution of these books; but as it appeared that there were books to be given away, he would only say that he left the House of Representatives in 1831, and came into the Senate in 1834; consequently, he found himself entitled to no books. He thought that when books were to be distributed, he and the gentleman from Georgia [Mr. Cuthbert] ought to have a share. Mr. BENTON observed that this showed what a vile thing it was. Here were members sitting on that floor who were entitled to no books, while those who had been out of Congress for four years could get them; and if they had died in the interim, the books must go to their heirs. Mr. KNight's amendment was rejected. On motion of Mr. WEBSTER, the bill was further amended by the insertion of an appropriation of three hundred dollars for completing the medals heretofore voted to General Ripley. Mr. PRESTON moved to amend the bill by adding an appropriation of 20,000 dollars for the erection of a court-house for the courts of the United States in Charleston, South Carolina. Mr. BLACK moved to amend the amendment by adding an appropriation of 20,000 dollars for the erection of a court-house for the courts of the United States at Jackson, Mississippi. Mr. BUCHANAN moved further to amend the amendment by adding an appropriation for the erection of a court-house for the courts of the United States at Philadelphia. After some remarks from Messrs. PRESTON, BLACK, BUCHANAN, WEBSTER, and MANGUM, Mr. PRESTON withdrew his motion, and the motions of Messrs. BLAck and 13uch ANAN consequently fell with it. Mr. MANGUM moved to amend the bill by striking out the appropriation of 340,000 dollars for the contingent expenses of the courts of the United States, which, he said, was extravagant and unnecessary, and insert 140,000 dollars. After some opposition from Mr. WEBSTER, this amendment was rejected. on motion of Mr. EWING of Ohio, the bill was amended by inserting an appropriation for the orvey of land, iately acquired from the Indians in the Wisconsin