Imagens das páginas

H. OF R.)

Kern and George.

(FEB. 3, 1837.

[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]

tive, where it belonged, and not upon this House. Mr. If he was mistaken in his views of this subject, he should V. said that in respect to himself he could say with per nevertheless adhere to the opinion that the Executive fect truth that be was wholly ignorant of the details and should be left untrammelled in directing the outfit and preparations necessary for such a voyage; he did not, conduct of this important expedition. Mr. V. said he therefore, wish to assume the responsibility of volun- could not suppress the expression of some surprise at teering any directions respecting them. The gentleman the course the gentleman from Maine (Mr. JARVIS] bad predicts a failure of this expedition if conducted upon taken, recollecting, as he did, that at the last session the the present plan; but is not the hazard of failure same gentleman was opposed to the expedition, because greatly increased if we undertake to interfere and direct not only the equipment, but even the sending it out at a new plan? From the moment we interfere, the Sec- all, had not been left to the sole discretion of the Es. retary is relieved of all responsibility; and in case of ecutive. At present, he would have this House to infailure the Congress of the United States will bave ac- terpose its authority by indicating to the same Executive quired the enviable reputation of having procured for what class of vessels should be employed! He, (Mr. V.,) itself the praises of the whole civilized world by the of course, had no right to impugn men's motives, por did enactment of a law directing the expedition, and then he; but still he could not regard those who wished to of having disappointed ihe bigh hopes every where en- derange the organization at present agreed upon as tertained of it, by volunteering its interference in the very friendly to the enterprise in any form. details of the enterprise as already adopted, and, he had The expedition was, as he had said, honorable to our no doubt, wisely adopted.

national character; would be so regarded abroad and at Without pretending to know which was the most home; was expedient, for wise purposes connected with suitable for this service, a frigate or a sloop of war, yet our great commercial interests; would add much to vari. he thought in one important respect at least the former ous departments of human knowledge; and would, he bad was preferable to the latter. Mr. V. said that he had no doubt, at all times be amply provided for by Conoccasionally seen statements of the extent and operations gress. It had, he believed, received the individual supof our commerce in that quarter of the globe, which to port of the delegation in Congress from Ohio, and him were truly astonishing. It was carried on in a re- would not be lost sight of by the people of that State. gion where all the inhabitants are barbarians; our mer. Mr. BRIGGS said it was evident ihat they could not chants, in their intercourse with them, were subjected get through the bill to-night, and he therefore moved to perpetual vigilance against surprise and violence, and, that the committee rise. Agreed to. after all, accounts are by no means uncommon of at

The committee then rose and reported, tacks, murders of our seamen, and even of captures of

And the House adjourned. ships with their crews. On these occasions the most shocking barbarities are usually committed. Now, these peo

FRIDAY, FEBRUARY 3. ple, whose lives and property are thus perilled, consti

KERN AND GEORGE. tute a part of the sum total of the population and wealth of the nation. The Government is bound to give them Mr. PEARCE, of Rhode Island, from the Committee every reasonable protection. For one, Mr. V. said, he on Commerce, to which was referred the petition of was willing to afford that protection to American capital John Kern, deputy collector, and John D. George, depand enterprise, without stopping to inquire what region uty naval officer, of the port of Philadelphia, reported of the globe was the theatre of their operation. All bar. the following resolution : barians entertain very extravagant ideas of their own Resolved, that the memorial of John Kern and John power, and very contemptible notions of the power of D. George be referred to the First Comptroller of the ihose who have not made before their eyes a display of Treasury, to be by him transmitted to the collector of superior power. It must of necessity bé so, since their the port of Philadelphia, who is hereby directed to setwhole stock of knowledge, from which to make their tle the claim of said Kern and George, for services, as comparisons, consists of what they know of themselves clerks, by them performed, in carrying into effect the and see of otbers.

18th section of the tariff act of July 14th, 1832, accordThese people know they are an overmatch for our ing to agreement. merchant vessels; and, never having seen any thing else, Mr. WHITTLESEY, of Ohio, desired to know somethey are not aware of the existence of ships of superior thing about this resolution, before he could vote for it. force. They therefore attack our vessels without fear Mr. PEARCE explained that an appropriation had of future chastisement. The display before them of a been made, for the payment of clerk bire, to carry into frigate would undeceive them, give them new ideas of effect the tariff act of 1832. The service had been perour power, and cause them to hesitate before making an formed by the deputy collector and deputy naval officer, attack on our merchantmen, for fear of future punish- after office hours; but the collector bad construed the ment. It is in pursuance of this policy we have spent law in such manner that they could not procure their millions of dollars in stationing military posts and ma- pay; and this resolution was for the purpose of providing king military displays in the presence of the Indians, far ihat they should be paid. in the interior, solely with a view to impress them with Mr. WILLIAMS, of North Carolina, was opposed to an idea of our power, and thus so far overawe them as paying out money in this way. They were not autho. to give security to the weak and powerless of our peo- rized to make appropriations, unless by bill or joint res. ple who have intercourse with them, without the means olution; and he hoped this resolution would not pass. of defending their persons or property,

Mr. V. said Mr. PEARCE then went into a full explanation of the it appeared to him that the sending out of a frigate was manner in which the service had been performed, sta. only an extension of our existing and long-established ting, at the same time, that it had been performed bet. policy to the barbarians in the South Sea islands, with ter by these clerks than it could bave been by others; whom our people are brought into intercourse. The yet if other clerks had performed the service there small vessels will perform the explorations, while the would have been no question as to the propriety of pay. frigate would perform the equally important duly of de ing them. manding satisfaction of the natives for wrongs already

Mr. CAMBRELENG suggested that the most appro done, and promising them punishment for those they priate course would be to move to discharge the com may in future commit; and in many other respects great mittee from the subject, and refer it to the Secretary o ly facilitate the labors to be performed by the squadron. I the Treasury.

FEB. 3, 1837.)

Exploring Expedition.

(H. OF R.


Mr. PEARCE said the subject had been before the Mr. LANE said he fully concurred in the opinion exSecretary, and the only question was as to the construc. pressed by the honorable gentleman from Massachusetts, tion of the law. It was in consequence of the construc. [Mr. REED.] That he rose to correct one observation tion the colector had put upon the law, that the money on this point which fell from bis friend from Kentucky, was refused to be paid. He had done what he consid. | [Mr. Hardin,) which, in his opinion, did great injustice ered to be his duty in reporting the resolution; but if the to the clerks in the departments. He had been called House refused to adopt the report, he had nothing to say. upon to do business in the different departments, during

Mr. WILLIAMS, of North Carolina, said it appeared the present session, and had called at all hours, from 9 that the Secretary doubted whether he had the power to 12, and lately from 9 to 11; that he had at all times to pay this money, and the passage of this resolution was found them in their offices, zealously and faithfully deto relieve him of the responsibility of the matter. Hespaching every duty, carrying into effect what be concontended the House had not the power to direct the Sec. sidered a very severe law of the last session. retary to pay this money.

Mr. HARDIN briefly replied to the gentlemen from Mr. HARPER contended that these men ought to be Indiana, (Mr. Boon and Mr. LANE.] pad, inasmuch as the money had been appropriated for Mr. PEARCE denied that this was a claim for extra the purpose of paying this clerk hire; and they had per- pay or extra services. He had not advocated it upon formed the service, and that, too, out of office hours. that principle. It was a claim for services which would

Mr. PEARCE then moved the following, as a substi- have been paid if other individuals had performed them, tute for the original resolution:

and the money was already appropriated, in anticipaRestved, that the Committee on Commerce be dis. tion, for the payment of these services. But, by the con. charged from the further consideration of the subject, struction put upon the law by the collector, he withheld and that the same, with the report of the committee, be

the money: referred to the Secretary of the Treasury:

Mr. CAVE JOHNSON then read the law on the subMr. WILLIAMS, of North Carolina, then moved to ject, and Mr. HARPER made some further remarks in lay the whole subject on the table. Lost.

support of the claim, when Mr. CAVE JOHNSON was opposed to allowing Mr. WHITTLESEY, of Ohio, moved that the House claims of this kind. If they admitted this claim, there proceed to the orders of the day; which was agreed to. would innumerable claims come before them of a similar

EXPLORING EXPEDITION. Mr. HOAR could not see the propriety of referring Mr. PHILLIPS asked leave of the House to submit this subject to the Secretary of the Treasury.

the following resolution: Mr. PEARCE again urged upon the Honse the pro- Resolved, That the President of the United States be priety and justice of allowing this claim. There was no requested to inform the House of the progress which deubt of their having performed the service, and that, has been made in the arrangements for the surveying and 100, better than it could have been done by strange exploring expedition authorized at the last session of clerks.

Congress, and of the objects and measures to which said Mr. HOAR moved to amend the substitute by striking expedition is to be devoted. out that part of it which referred the report of the com- Mr. HALL, of Maine, objecting, mitee to the Secretary of the Treasury; which was Mr. PHILLIPS moved a suspension of the rule for agreed to: Ayes 75, noes not counted.

this purpose; which was agreed to. Mr. HARPER then moved to amend the resolution Mr. MASON, of Ohio, moved the following amend. by referring the claim to the Secretary of the Treasury ment, which Mr. Phillips accepted as a modification:

as And also of the size and the names of the vessels des. Nr. CAVE JOHNSON moved to refer the whole sub. ignated by the Department to be employed in the ex. ject to the Committee of Claims.

ploring expedition; with the number of the officers and Mr. HARPER could not see the propriety of refer- men therein; together with a statement of the expendi. ring this subject (o the Committee of Claims.

tures already incurred in fitting out the expedition, and Mfr. HARDIN was opposed to allowing these claims, an estimate of the further expenditures which will be as there would be no end to them if once admitted.

He necessary until its successful termination, on the plan Considered the Government had the right to have the

now projected.” whole time of the clerks in its employ. of late years,

Mr. ROBERTSON then moved the following amend. the clerks had fixed their own hours; they would go to

ment. Strike out all after the word “Resolved," and intheir offices at ten o'clock, and perhaps leave them by sert the following: twe; but if any thing was done by them out of what they “ That the Secretary of the Navy be directed to comcalled their office hours

, they must ask for extra pay? municate to this House the number of vessels designed, The House had had various applications of this kind, but and fitted out, or now fitting out, for the exploring exbad always refused to grant them; and he hoped they al pedition to the Pacific and South Seas; the class to

wbich they respectively belong; the cost already incur. Mr. REED believed this claim to be just, and he red, and ihat which is estimated will be incurred, in Fuld be pleased to see the committee

bring in a bill for completing their equipment; the time when the expedi. Se relief of those individuals. This would be the prop- tion may be expected to sail, and its probable annual er collirse, and he thought the House should take the re- cost afterwards; also, whether either of the said vessels, spans bility of paying these individuals, without sending or any other public vessel, has been put in requisition Il to the Secretary of the Treasury.

for the conveyance of General Santa Anna to Mexico, Mr. BOON thought, if gentlemen were about to estab- or elsewhere; and, if so, the authority under which such sh the principle that the Government should require requisition has been made; with all orders to and from the whole of the time of its officers, they should begin the Department relative thereto." 2: tome, and not permit members of the House, while Mr. PHILLIPS hoped this amendment would not pre. bsy were getting their eight dollars per day, receiving vail. The resolution, as modified, called for all the infor. Compensation for services rendered out of the House mation desired in relation to the South Sea expedition;

* 43 just as proper that this restriction should be therefore, he could not see the necessity for the gentle. aced upon members of that House, as upon clerks in man's amendment.

Mr. WILLIAMS, of North Carolina, called for the Vol. Xlll.-99

for settlement,

wars would do so.

ke departments.

H. OF R.]

Susan Decalur- David Kilbourn, &c.

[Feb. 4, 1837.

yeas and nays on the proposed amendment; which were

SATURDAY, FEBRUARY 4. not ordered, and the amendment was disagreed to. Mr. MERCER then submitted an amendment calling from the select committee to investigate abuses in the

Mr. GARLAND, of Virginia, by leave of the House, on the Secretary for a list of the officers of the navy, with the dates of their respective commissions, and the

executive departments, reported the following resolu.

tion: number of years each bad been at sea, since the year 1814.

Resolved, that the chairman be directed to ask the Mr. JARVIS suggested that it would be more proper

House of Representatives for an order to print so many to move this as a separate resolution. The information

copies of the journal of the committee as they may required by it could not be obtained for a considerable

think proper to order for the use of the members, to be time, and would prevent an early answer being made to

printed and laid on their tables, with their report, not the original resolution. After a few words from Mr.

exceeding 1,030 copies. MERCER, bis amendment was disagreed to. The

Mr. G. explained that this resolution was introduced resolution, as modified, was then agreed to.

with a view to have the journal of the committee print. The House then passed to the orders of the day.

ed, and kept in possession of the committee, to be laid

belore the House at the same time they made their reSUSAN DECATUR.

port. If this was not done, it would take some time to The House proceeded to the consideration of the have the journal printed after the report was made; joint resolution anting a pension to Susan Decatur,

consequently, it would delay the action of the House, widow of the late Commodore Decatur.

as it might be some days after the report was made be. Resolved by the Senale and House of Representatives of fore this journal could be printed and laid upon the the United States of America in Congress assembled, That

tables of members. Mrs. Susen Decatur, widow of the late Commodore S.

Mr. CAVE JOHNSON inquired what number of Decatur, be paid from the navy pension fund a pension

copies the resolution proposed to print. for five years, commencing from the 30th June, 1834,

Mr. GARLAND replied that it was not stated on the in conformity with the provisions of the act concerning

face of the resolution; but it was the intention of the tiaval pensions and the navy pension sund, passed 30th

committee that the usual number should be printed. June, 1834; the said pension not to be liable for her

Mr. CAVE JOHNSON then moved an amendment, responsibilities on account of the debts of her late hus- that the number to be printed should not exceed 1,0304 band; provided that the said pension shall cease on the

which was agreed to; and the resolution, as amended, was death or marriage of the said Susan Decatur.”

then adopted. A motion was made by Mr. WASHINGTON to

KERN AND GEORGE. amend said resolution by striking out the words "the

'The House then resumed the consideration of the said pension not to be liable for her responsibilities on

unfinished business, being the resolution reported by account of the debts of her late husband," and inserting

Mr. D. J. PEARCE, from the Committee on Commerce, in lieu thereof ihe following: "and that she be allowed,

as follows: from said fund, the arrearages of the ball pay of a post

Resolved, that the memorial of John Kern and John captain from the death of Commodore Decatur to the

D. George, be referred to the First Comptroller of the 30th June, 1834, together with the pension hereby al

Treasury, to be by him transmitted to the collector of lowed her.

the port of Philadelphia, who is hereby directed to To which amendment the following was offered by setile the claim of said Kern and George, for services, as Mr. MERCER, and accepted by Mr. W.: " And that clerks, by them performed, in carrying into effect ihe the arrearage of said pension be vested in the Secretary

18th section of the lariff act of July 14, 1832, according of the Treasury, in trus', for the use of the said Susan

to agreement." Decatur.'

Mr. Peance had moved the following, as a substi. Mr. WHITTLESEY, of Ohio, moved to commit the

tute for the original resolution: resolution to the Committee on Naval Affairs; which

Resolved, That the Committee on Commerce be diswas lost. The amendment of Mr. WASHINGTON was then agreed

charged from the further consideration of the subject,

and ibat the same, with the report of the committee, be lo; and the resolution, as amended, was then engrossed,

referred to the Secretary of the Treasury for seille. read a third time, and passed, and sent to the Senate

ment." for concurrence.

The question pending was the motion of Mr. CATE DAVID KILBOURN.

Johnson to refer the whole subject to the CommitThe "bill for the relief of David Kilbourn” was then tee of Claims.

Mr. CAVE JOHNSON referred to the law of 1834, This bill had passed the committee, and was on its showing that under its provisions the officers in question engrossment. The case was a well-known one, had were bound to give their whole time to their duties, been for several years before Congress, and been more without any extra compensation. The reason of the law than once rejected, and repeatedly set aside. Kilbourn

was obvious, being to prevent persons from neglecting alleges that he was a Canadian spy, and, after much suf- the public business during office hours, for the purpose fering, succeeded in escaping, with the total loss of his of getting extra compensation for doing the work out o property by confiscation.

office hours. Mr. WHITTLESEY, of Ohio, asked for the yeas and Mr. CAMBRELENG hoped no more time would be nays; which were ordered.

consumed upon it, but that it would be referred, as rec Mr. HOWELL called for the reading of the bill and ommended by the Committee on Commerce. report; which was ordered.

Mr. SUTHERLAND remarked, they had already After some remarks by Mr. WARDWELL, the ques. wasted more money in discussing it than the whole sub tion was taken, and decided in the affirmative: Yeas 83, ject was worth. He contended that it was unnecessary

to send it now to any committee of the House, since ai So the bill was ordered to be engrossed and read a the facts had been fully elicited. third time to-morrow.

Mr. McKAY could not see the propriety of referring Aster taking up and disposing of some other busi- it to the Secretary of the Treasury, for be had alread ness,

expressed his opinion of the law, that it did not autho The House adjourned.

taken up.

Days 65.

[ocr errors][merged small][merged small][merged small]
[ocr errors]

dered to be put.

rize the payment to be made by him; and the House quest a moment's indulgence, not so much on his own could not enlarge the powers of a law by a simple reso- individual account, as because it was due to the commit. lution. He would prefer referring it back to the Com- tee, and to the House of which he was a member. He mittee on Commerce, with instructions to report a bill (Mr. P.) referred to a statement which had appeared in embracing the claim.

the Globe of this morning, which was as follows: Mr. WAITTLESEY, of Ohio, concurred with the “If statement be true, or even approach the gentleman from Pennsylvania, that it was unnecessary / truth, it is evident that a gross outrage was committed now to send this subjeci to a committee, and for the rea. by Mr. Peyton towards a witness summoned to testify son stated by that gentleman.

before the committee, and therefore under its protecThe motion to refer it to the Committee of Claims tion; and an act of such disrespect to the committee it. was rejected.

self as should have subjected Mr. Peyton to its sever. Mr. WILLIAMS, of North Carolina, then moved to est censure. refer the subject to the Committee on Commerce, with The statement of Whitney alluded to was not only un. instructions to report a bill for the relief of the claim- true, but it did not even approach the truth. In answer Ants. Lost.

to it, nothing more was necessary for him to do than The amendment of Mr. PEARCE was then put, and simply to state to the House the facts of the case, as agreed to, 63 to 58.

they appeared upon the journal of the committee. MF, CAMBRELENG moved a reconsideration of the It would be sufficient to state that his friend from last vote, as he wished to move to strike out the words Ohio, (Mr. HAMER,] though differing from him (Mr. P.) " for settlement."

in politics, moved, on the conclusion of the occurrence Mr. SUTHERLAND and Mr. PEARCE said there in question, a resolution of censure against Reuben M. would be po objection to strike out these words; and Whitney for insulting him, (Mr. P.,) which passed unanMr. E. WAITTLESEY suggested that the amendment imously. The committee had authorized him (Mr. P.) be agreed to by general consent.

to publish this resolution, which he would lay before the Mr. MCKAY moved to lay the whole subject on the House. table; which was agreed to: Yeas 63, nays 62.

Extract from the Journal of the Committee of Invesliga. The House then passed to the priva!e orders.

tion, J. Garland, Chairman. DAVID KILBOURN.

“ WEDNESDAY, January 25, 1837. "Bill for the relief of David Kilbourn," on its third " By Mr. PEYTON.- Question 15. Did you receive any rearling.

letter of recommendation from Roger B. Taney, or did After some remarks by Messrs. HARDIN, STORER, he in any manner countenance or encourage you in ap. WARDWELL, HOAR, PARKER, and BRIGGS, plying for the agency contemplated, or did he positively

Mr. REYNOLDS moved the previous question; which refuse to recommend, receive, or countenance you in was seconded by the House, and the main question or. that capacity, while he was at the head of the Treasury

Department? Mr. HARDIN called for the yeas and nays on the "Mr. WHITNEY. —Answer. I decline answering this inmain question; which were ordered, and were: Yeas 83, terrogatory; more particularly as the individual pronays 73.

pounding it has asserted, positively and publicly, that So the bill was passed.

The substance of the latter part of it is true, beginning ROBERT WALN.

with or did he,' &c.; therefore, being the party acThe House proceeded to the consideration of the bill cused, I am not a proper witness. I think, in justice, for the relief of Robert Waln; the question being on or

that the individual who has made the allegation should dering the bill to be engrossed for a third reading.

be called to produce his proof. A debate ensued, in which Messrg. INGERSOLL,

“ The witness was desired to withdraw. MeKIM, JARVIS, LAWRENCE, G. LEE, HARPER,

“ Mr. HaMen moved that the foregoing answer to the HARDIN, CAMBRELENG, PÁRKER, and PHIL

fifteenth question be returned to the witness, being no reply to the interrogatory, and disrespectful to a mem.

ber of the committee. When Mr. ROBERTSON moved to recommit the bill to the Committee of Ways and Means, with instructions passing of this resolution, was brought into the commit.

" The witness, (R. M. Whitney,) immediately after the to report a general bill to regulate the principles on which it may, in their opinion, be just and expedient to

tee room, out of which he had been sent, and the reso. remit the duties on merchandise.

lution of censure was read to him, (R. M. Whitney,) and The debate was continued hy Messrs. CAMBREL

his answer was returned to him. He (R. M. Whiiney) ENG, PARKER, LAWRENCE, D. J. PEARCE, MC

then apologized to the committee, and took back his an. KIM, PHILLIPS, and HARPER.

swer; after which he peaceably answered the next ques. Mr. MCKENNAN moved that the House do now ad

tion which was propounded to him, and such as before journ, but withdrew his motion in order to afford op

he had most indecorously refused to answer. This stale. Dortuniy to the committee of five, appointed on a former

ment of the simple fact would at once show who was day, to make their report in relation to the counting and

wrong in the occurrence referred to; it would show the declaration of the votes for President and Vice President

unanimous decision of the committee to be that the wit. of the United States; which report, on motion, was or

ness was wrong, and his subsequent apology was an ac. knowledgment of it."

Having stated thus much, which he (Mr. P.) Aattered COMMITTEE OF INVESTIGATION. himself was an ample refutation of the charges implied Nr. PEYTON asked the indulgence of the House to ice a matter personal to himself, which had appeared unnecessary to relate what was the actual occurrence in the officialjournal of this morning.

on the occasion referred to. His friend from Virginia,

[Mr. GARLAND, ] and every other member of the comMr. Perros rose and said: The House would bear mittee, would do him the justice to say that he (Mr. P.) in witness that he had not been in the habit of annoy: had, in the first instance, treated Whitney with as much ing them with matters personal to himself which occur- courtesy as he would have shown even to Chief Justice

out of doors. Now, bowever, he felt bound to re- Marshall himself, if he had been alive and there; and

LIPS, participated,

dered to be printed.

Lease being given,

H. OF R.)

Commiliee of Investigation.

(PEB. 4, 1837

for him (Mr. P.) to do so, when the course and conduct Mr. WISE then rose and said: of the nian to him (Mr. P.) was considered, it required Mr. Speaker: I request the same indulgence that has on his part no little exertion of philosophy. He, (Mr. been granted to my friend from Tennessee, (Mr. PerP.,) however, had done so.

TON;] I request the indulgence not so much on my own From the time the witness (R. M. Whitney) first came account, personally, as in respect to the committee of into the committee room, he (Mr. P.) had put about six- which I am a member. I wish to show how the prc. ly questions in regular succession, and at different times, ceedings of that committee have been misrepresented to all of which he could not get more than ten or twelve and belied by that infamous wretch who lias published answers; the witness threw them off contemptuously, his card in the Globe. From the first moment he (R. denouncing them as inquisitorial; and this contemptuous M. Whitney) came before the commitee, I saw, or course he°(Whitney) repeated dry after day, and night thought I saw, in what his examination might result be. after night. It was manifest that he (R. M. Whitney) fore its termination. It may have been imagination, but bad totally mistaken the feelings which prompted his I anticipated his intentions from the start. He was evid (Mr. P's) course, and from this indulgence in his inso. dently disposed to try my friend from Tennessee and lence he made a miscalculation, and went at length 100 mystir

. He had felt bis way, for some time before, in far; no doubt he imagined that because his card in the the Globe. He tried our patience there by attempt. Globe had not been noticed by me, therefore I was to ing to draw our aitention towards him by his insulting be insulied with impunity. On the night of the occur. cards and paragraphs. We both had failed to lake any rence (said Mr. P.) I pui to him a question, in order 10 notice of him; we could not recognise bim as a gentleman draw from him the truth of my staiement which he in any respect. His behaviour and manner, when he carded me for making; the question related to Mr. came before the committee, was that of a supercilious, Taney’s refusal to countenance him; but, as on for self-important, contumacious, and contemptuous witness, mer occasions, the witness would not answer, affirming Uis answers to interrogatories were given in writing. that he had a right to demand from me proof of this He would write his answer at the table, and then, with maller, as I had stated it to be true. Sir, I suffered this an impudent air of nonchalance, would fold his arms, conduct to pass unnoticed by me, both because he was cock up his legs against the wall, and cast glances, a witness, and because I did not wish to enter into person. full of defiance and expressive of contempt, at me al altercation with one who is as completely shielded and my friend from Tennessee, as if anxious 10 ** from the notice of all honorable men by his infamy as a insult us by his looks. To all this behaviour, sir, not a mad dog is by his hydrophobia. Bul, sir, he accompa- remark was applieci; no notice of his insolence was nied that answer with a scowl, a frown, an insulling louk taken; we treated him wiih quiet composure and decent of defiance, directed boldly to me personally, which respect, until, emboldened by our forbearence, he went perhaps no one else then saw. I appealed, sir, imme. furiner; he behaved worse; le ried the experiment of : diately to the Chair, to know if the witness should be being personal in his answer. His course, I think, Wism permitted to insult me; I walked up to him, and said I tentative; he wanted to see how far he might dare to would teach him better than to insult me; that I would The night this occurrence happened, I was sit'ing, with let him know that I required no constitutional privilege several of my colleagues of the commitiee, on a sofa in 8 to chastise him if he dured to insult me; that, if he did, corner of the room, on one side of the fireplace, conwould put him to death on the spot. Sir, I used language veising in perfect good humor, in a way certainly very I which was harsh, for I was excited, as any man would agreeable to myselt, lelling anecdotts in whispers. The have been wlio has a soul within him fit to be saved. silence which reigned was broken only at intervals by The Chair called to order, and I took my seat. He says

the annunciation of an interrogatory, or the reading of I drew a pistol upon him; it is false. After I sat down,

The answer to the quest on which caused he rose and began again; I walked to h m again, and be, the affray was announced; the aliention of all to the at that moment, seemed. as it he was about to use a reading of it was called. The witness was sitting at a weapon: he had his band in his pocket, and, when I lable in the corner, on the opposite side of the fireplace walked up to him, I put my hand in my bosom, but I from the sufa; a long table was sitting in front of ibe drew nothing from it; every one present believed, from fireplace; the chairman and Mr. Peyton were sitting on his attitude, he was armed with deadly weapons. My

the side next the fire, the former towards the end next friend from Virginia (Vr. Wisk) interposed; the witness the soia, and the latter towards the end next the wilness was withdrawn, and the committee unanimously passed The clerk was sitting on the opposite side of the table A resolution censuring his insulting behaviour.

The back of the chairman was towards me, and when he as I couk, sir, I made an apology, which I felt due to read the answer, and Mr. Peyton louked around, i the committee, for having been transported by such brought bis ( Mr. P's) full face towards me. As soon as the provocation to lose the momentary command of my tem- answer was read, I looked at my friend, and saw he wa per. The wiine-s, on being again brought into the Hushed with excitement; his face beamed with indigna room, a poleg zed for the insult, and was afterwards, as lion; no one could mistake his feelings. He first address he had been by me before, treated with perfect respect,

ed the chairman, by saying, “Mr. Chairman, I wish you as due to his position as a witness. I think, sir, this ex- distinctly to inform the witness that he is not to insul planation and statement of the facts is due to the com

me here."

He was proceeding, when I arose, and re mittee and to ihe House; the prompt course adopted by marked, " Mr. Chairman, the d-d insolence of thi. the committee is alone a sufficient relutation of the false witness is insufferable, and has been borne long enough. statements which have rendered this explanation neces. He had, in fact, Mr. Speaker, declined to answer on sary. I knew what was due to a witness, and I felt wha' question because it was " inquisitorial;” and becaus was due to myself. I do not envy, sir, that wretch his another was "inquisitorial” he declined to answer it, an. callousness and insensibility, who, when assailed by a had rung all the changes upon that word till, if reitera ruffian, would not, without regard to who he is, resist,

tion could convince and supply the place of truth, on if necessary, force by force. Gralefui to the House for might have believed, trom mere repetition, that ih the indulgence which it has accorded to me, I shall not committee was, what it has been denounced to be any longer occupy its time unnecessarily.

worse than a Spanish inquisition! Sir, he bad receive Mr. Peyton, having concluded, then resumed his seat.

bis cue. The resolution of the committee of investigation was But 10 proceed: My friend rose as I uttered thes then read by the Clerk of the House.

words respecting the witness, put me back with his aro

an aliswer.

As soon

« AnteriorContinuar »