Imagens das páginas
[ocr errors][merged small][merged small]

re-established in their possessions, and enabled to pro. Mr. WHITE stated that they had now joined the cure provisions for the sustenance of themselves and army, declared war against the hostiles, and drawn ra families.”

tions as attached to the army. Mr. WHITE hoped the House would direct the reso. Mr. WILLIAMS, of Kentucky, moved to insert, after Jution to be engrossed without commitment. The docu- | the word “sufferers," “who are unable to provide for ments which had been laid on our tables had afforded themselves;" which was agreed to. all the requisite information on the subject. He would Mr. PARKS inquired if there was any precedent for not occupy the attention of the House longer than to this resolution. It struck him that it set a precedent of say that five hundred families had been driven from no trifling importance--one under which a hundred miltheir homes in consequence of the war, and had been lions might be taken from the Treasury. He felt as reduced from a state of comfort and affluence to the ut. much for the distresses of these people as any one most want. They were now hanging on the remnant of could; but be thought the House ought to reflect a little our army for protection, and were without provisions, before they established so dangerous a precedent. He or the means of obtaining them. After the vote of the hoped the resolution would lie over till Monday, to afHouse making appropriations to repress the hostilities ford time for consideration. of the Indians, for which he was very grateful, and Mr. PATTON was very glad, he said, that the gentle. after the repeated appropriations of money for the re. man from Maine had made the inquiry whether there was lief of these very hostile Indians, when they were starv- any precedent for this measure; and he thought it proper ing, one appropriation of $30,000 baving been made at also to make the further inquiry, whether there was any his instance, he trusted that the House would not ob principle by which it could be sustained. He had very ject to relieve the necessities of these unfortunate peo little doubt that the difficulty suggested could be removed, ple, until they could find means of providing for them. for he did not believe there was any considerable error selves. He had called upon the President, and asked or abuse in legislation that could not be sustained by some him if he would not give an order to furnish them with

precedent, real or supposed. Precedents, instead of provisions from the commissariat, and he replied that he being guides to direct, ought to be beacons to warn us. could not, but that it would afford him much pleasure He adverted to the act for the relief of the sufferers on to do it if Congress would give him the power.

the Niagara frontier, and to the abuses practised under it. Mr. WHITTLESEY rose, not, he said, to oppose the Mr. GRANGER, of New York, rose and said: Mr. resolution, but to suggest to the gentleman the propri Speaker, in the little observation I have had of men and ety of rendering it more definite in its terms. It was things, I have learned that precedent is often used to retoo indefinite as to the amount of the rations, and the strain our generous impulses, but seldom to impel us to time for which they were to be furnished. The inhab. generous action. In the little time I have been here, I itants ought not to be subsisted by the Government have not been so much gratified with any thing that has longer than their indigent circumstances rendered it occurred, as I have been at the prompt manner in which necessary.

this House has stepped forward to provide means for carMr. BOON thought the latter clause of the resolution rying on the war in Florida. Whilst we have been withtoo indefinite. They should be provided for until they out any official information from the executive departwere able to sustain themselves and families.

ment of the Government, whilst the newspapers, and the Mr. BEALE moved to amend by striking out all after newspapers alone, have been discussing the question the word “ possessions."

whether censure should rest upon one of the DepartMr. WHITE accepted the amendment as a modifica- ! ments or upon the commanding officer in Florida, this

House and the other branch of the Legislature have Mr. PARKER said the resolution ought to be limited stepped forward to sustain this war, although no requito some definite term, say two or three months. He sition has been made by the Chief Magistrate of the nahoped it would be postponed till Monday, in order that tion. Sir, I rejoice that they have done so. Congress might act more advisedly upon the matter. [Mr. CAMBRELENG rose to explain, and Mr. G. yield.

Mr. WHITE hoped, he said, that it would not be ed the floor. postponed. The resolution only contemplated relief Mr. C. said that great injustice had been done in the until the inhabitants could be re-established in their newspapers to the course pursued by the Departments. homes, or fly to some place of safety. At present they The Committee of Ways and Means had been furnished * were pressed on all sides by the savages; their houses with the first communication on which they acted, by the were burned, their plantations laid waste, their negroes Secretary of War. They next day received a second carried off, and, in fine, they were starving for bread. communication, with all the documents relating to the If any relief was to be afforded to them, it must be done Indian war, and which contained all the information that promptly.

| was requisite. The documents had not gone forth to Mr. PARKER was not, he said, opposed to the ob the public, which was an extraordinary circumstance. ject of the resolution; but, while we provided relief, They certainly were sent by the committee to the House, we should take care that the public service was not pre and ought to have accompanied the bill, and been printed judiced by it. He would rather vote for some specific and sent to the Senate. If they had, the erroneous imsum, say $50,000.

pression as to the remissness of the Departments or the Mr. ÉVERETT said he would submit to the gentle Executive would not have gone into the newspapers. man from Florida the propriety of extending the same It was not the fault of the Executive, or of the Commitrelief to the friendly Indians near Fort Brooke. By a tee of Ways and Means, that this had not been done. ] letter received yesterday from that quarter, he was in Mr. G. resumed. If the gentleman had listened to formed that three hundred Indians had been in that vi-me a little longer, he would have discovered that I incinity for six or eight months, prepared to emigrate; tended no censure on the Executive; but as he has chothat provision had not been made for their removal, nor sen to challenge me to speak, I do say that the history for their subsistence in the mean time; that, in view of of this nation can present nothing like the silence wbich their emigration, they had been ordered not to plant the has existed upon this subject. i do say, that whilst this last season; and, from their destitute condition, fears hall has been ringing with plaudits upon our administrawere entertained of their going over to the enemy; that tion, and whilst we have been called upon day after day even surprise was expressed that they yet remained to bunt up the bones of dead quarrels here, whilst your faithful.

1 settlements have been laid waste and desolate, no com

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

munication has been made to this House, as a branch of Wurte) has informed the House again and again that the Government. Whatever information you have, even the President of the United States has promptly done upon the gentleman's own showing, is a letter from the all in his power to suppress the savage and relieve the Secretary of War to the chairman of the Committee of country. And whenever the subject has been presentWays and Means.

ed to this House, it has been taken up and acted upon [Mr. CAMBRELENG. That letter contained all that was with a promptness unknown to legislation. To consider necessary.

the present resolution, the rules of the House have been Mr. G. continued. Sir, I repeat that, with a war suspended. known to exist in this country, we have been occupied No matter, however, what the subject or the occain hunting up the possibility, not only of a war which sion, a dash at the Executive or his friends is to be esmight take place hereafter with a foreign nation, but also pected from some one of the opposition. to discover whether a war was last year likely to have Sir, if ever there was a time or an occasion in legis. existed. We have war enough upon our hands to take lation when men might indulge, all the nobler feelings care of. The war-cry is up in the woods, the tomahawk of the soul--when, to pause for precedents in legisla. glitters in the sunbeam, the scalping-knife is urged to its tion, or to consult the letter of the constitution, would cruel duty, the flower of your chivalry is strewed along be cruel--this is that time and that occasion. If aught the plain, and yet every department of this administra- could have dried up the sympathies of my heart, (always, tion is as dumb as the bleeding victims of this inglorious and I trust ever will be, open to the cries of distress, the contest. This would not have been said, sir, if the gen remarks of the honorable gentleman from New York tleman from New York had not cut short what I intended would have done it. But, he trusted, neither the injusto say.

tice of the remarks, nor the spirit of party it was so well The situation of Florida is unlike that of the country calculated to awaken, will influence a single vote on the alluded to by the gentleman from Virginia, (Mr. Patton.] adoption of the resolution. If I understand the character of that Territory, it is not Mr. HOLSEY said, when a suffering people had been susceptible of sustaining a dense population within its driven from their homes, and left without the means of borders. There are now but few inhabitants, and those sustaining themselves, that then it was the duty of the spread over a large expanse of country; and when they Government to extend to them relief. In the present are driven in from their settlements, unless the Govern case, the inhabitants of a portion of Florida were cut off ment extends its aid, they must inevitably perish. They by the savages from any settlement where they could are not like the sufferers on the Niagara frontier, who have an opportunity of supporting themselves by their fell back upon a country as rich in agricultural products own exertions, and surrounded on all parts by a wilderas any other section of the Union.

ness. In such a state of the case, he considered it to be I am not afraid of the precedent to be furnished by the duty of the Government to support those people this resolution. In legislating for a suffering people, I until they could be restored to their homes. If the in

until they coul want no precedent but that which my Creator has plant- habitants of Florida had been thrown back on a frontier ed in my bosom. I do not believe that we sit here with teeming with all the luxuries of the earth, then the apthe sympathies of our nature cbilled and frozen by the plication of the strength given them by their Creator mere force of the oath which we have taken. I do not would have been sufficient for their sustenance, without believe that our duty requires that they should be thus the aid of Government. If the inhabitants had been chilled and frozen. I believe that the existence of this thrown on the frontiers of Georgia and Alabama, then Government depends upon its extending its fostering we might apply the principle of the gentleman from hand to the unfortunate, whenever it can be done within Virginia, (Mr. Patron.) There are about 500 soldier's the limits of the constitution. Especially should this be | in that country, and they cannot procure the necessaries the case, where the sufferers reside within a Territory, of life; and when men, with arms in their hands, cannot and have no State Government to which they can look procure subsistence, how was it to be supposed that the

procure subsistence, how was it for succor. Such is the true course to be pursued in suffering inhabitants could survive without the aid of this nation; and then our people will feel that they are the Government? A Government that will not extend indeed members of one common family: and that, whilst protection and relief to its own citizens is unworthy the they bear equal burdens, they are the equal recipients | name of a Government. of the bounty and protection of Government.

Mr. HAWES proposed to amend the resolution, by Mr. LANE said he regretted the gentleman from New striking out the word “sufferers," and inserting in lieu York, (Mr. GRANGER,] for whom he entertained the kind-thereof, “ women, children, and men unable to bear est feelings of respect, bad not sought a more fit occa

arms." sion to indulge in bitter remarks against the Executive, Mr. H. said it would be apparent that his object was and those who sustain him in this House.

to confine the operation of the resolution to those who The resolution has for its object the immediate relief) were incapable of bearing arms in defence of their counof the citizens of Florida, whose country has been deso try. If individuals capable of bearing arms were in the lated, whose houses and property have been destroyed, field, rations would be issued to them as a matter of by an unexpected savage war upon its innocent and de- | course, and they should be nowhere but in the field of fenceless inhabitants-men, women, and children, in a battle, in defence of their firesides and their homes. state of starvation-a scene that can but call for the com Feed men up, and stuff them with rations, and, my word miseration of every sympathetic bosom.

for it, (said Mr. H.,) there is no fighting. But let them Yes, sir, upon this resolution, calling for action and depend upon themselves, let them have the soldier's ra. unanimity, the honorable gentleman from New York tions as the soldier gets them, in the field; let them be has deemed it his duty to arraign the Executive for neg hungry at times, and then they will fight fast enough. lect of duty, for being deaf to the cries of women and Those who were unable to arın in defence of their counchildren, while the scalping-knife is urged to its bloody try he would relieve; those capable of bearing arms office; that this House, instead of suppressing this war, should earn their rations by being found on the field of and defending the country, have been seeking other battle. cause of war, and hunting for the buried of the last Mr. BOULDIN said he wished to relieve these people session.

from their deplorable condition, but was not willing to Mr. Speaker, with what justice are those charges violate the constitution or transcend the powers of the made? The honorable gentleman from Florida (Mr. Government about it. He should never give a yote pred

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

icated on the idea that this House was a charitable insti- | It was a plain question, which needed no time for reflectution. He had often felt his heart warmed with the tion, and he felt perfectly satisfied, in his own mind, conmere imagination of what he would do for the relief of flicted with no provision of the constitution. the suffering, were these splendid resources his. They Mr. WHITE, of Florida, said he rose to appeal to not being his to dispose of, he could give nothing from those who intended to vote for the resolution under conthem on the ground of sympathy or charity. But this sideration, not to discuss it farther, as it was of the ut. Government is bound to protect its citizens against inva most importance that whatever was done should be done ding enemies--the people of Florida just as much as any promptly. He could not repress the expression of his others--no more, no less. If, from the suddenness of astonishment that, upon such a question, gentlemen were the attacks, or want of men or arms, we are not able to disposed to use such measured phraseology, and to emprotect them in their houses and at home, where we are ploy such refined limitations, to prevent our excessive bound to do it, we must do it where we can: take them humanity from too great enlargement by the Executive. under the immediate wing of the army. This protection The resolution proposed to relieve sufferers, driven must be real--not only from the tomahawk and scalping- from their homes by a desolating war, in the origin of knife, but from inevitable starvation caused by the ene which they bad no participation, but in the consequences my. The richest man might starve, if chased into the of which their lives and property bad been destroyed, to wilderness by the scalping-knife. Shall we be bound to an extent almost unexampled in the history of savage save him from the scalping-knife and let him starve in warfare. Upon such a question, he wished the House the wilderness before he can return to his means? If to proceed to the vote, and let those who doubt about these people are driven from their homes by an invading precedents look for them in the uniform practice of foe, and unable to sustain themselves in any other way, every year, for ten years past, as the journals bear testiI feel confident it is our literal duty to defend them in mony. He had been honored with a seat in the House that way; not only from death at the hand of the savage,

band of the savage, for ten years, and he could say with confidence that a but from starvation, the immediate consequence of the

precedent was to be found at every session. pursuit of the savage; and if the resolution be now

This was no party question, and he trusted that framed, or shall be altered, so as that none will be provi

one will be provi. the attention of the House would not be diverted ded for but such as we are bound to defend, and cannot

to other topics connected with it, which might be made otherwise defend, and who cannot protect or provide for the subject of fulure investigation. This bloody war. themselves, I will vote for it.

how, rāging on our frontier, was not produced by · Mr. GLASCOCK bad hoped, at least, that, upon a

| any acts of the people who were plundered and murdersubject like this, nothing would have transpired to bave

ed, nor by causes which they could, by any foresight or disturbed the barmony of this debate, and that they

and that they courage, control or prevent. It grew out of the relations should have bad immediate action upon it. He regretted pe

between the Government of the United States and these that any thing should have been thrown out in the way

Indians. A treaty was entered into for their removal to of censure upon the Government; and he had no hesita

the west of the Mississippi; they complained of this treation in expressing his firm belief that, so far as related

ty, and were indulged for another year by the Govern

Y, to the depredations in Florida, and all which had grown

ment, upon a solemn pledge, signed by all the chiefs, to out of it, no department of the Government was in any

remove this winter. The time arrived, and they violaway to blame. He believed that, throughout the whole

ted this convention, and commenced this scene of detransaction, each department had faithfully performed its

struction upon the peaceable, unsuspecting, and unof. duty. Mr. G. felt but little disposed to say any thing on

fending inhabitants of Florida. Whether the Governa question like that, nor should he have said a word but

ment took these precautionary measures in advance of for the remarks of the gentleman from New York, (Mr.

such a crisis is a matter that will be inquired into, and GRANGER.] He would, however, tell that gentleman

ought to be, and shall be, investigated. Whatever fault that, whatever he might suppose to influence the mem

may have been committed, (if any, which he did not bers of the administration on questions of this kind; yet,

charge,) that, however, would be inquired into, and it if a war came, whether foreign, domestic, or otherwise,

was due to the people of Florida, and to the Government, the friends of the administration would be found as

that it should be inquired into. He took pleasure in say. ready and as willing to protect the Government and

ing that, from the moment of the commencement of actheir fellow-citizens as any of the gentlemen of the op

tual hostilities, no Government could have taken more posite side. The time might yet come when the coun

energetic measures for the speedy termination of the try would see which would, and which would not, be

war than the President and Secretary of War had done. ready and willing to step forward in her defence.

They have done every thing he had asked with alacrity · With regard to the resolution, he hoped it would be

and proper public spirit. It is (said Mr. W.) the misadopted immediately. He did not know that it was actu

fortune of our country that the miserable handful of ally necessary; for if the commissary general, or the per.

men, called the army of the United States, are scatter. son authorized to issue rations, bad acted as Mr. G.

ed over a frontier of four thousand miles in extent, and would have done under the same circumstances, be had

could not be concentrated at any one point until a great not waited for any preliminary action on the part of the

portion of your territory is desolated. The commandGovernment. If the necessities of the inhabitants de

ing general, with fourteen companies under his commanded it, he should, without consulting any department

mand, was enabled only to bring into the fight 250 regof the Government, promptly have dealt out to them,

ulars, who fought with a spirit and gallantry never surtrusting to the magnanimity and liberality of the Govern

passed in a conflict with the Indians. I know General ment for his vindication. The case, however, would be

Clinch to be as prudent and as brave a man as the army hopeless, should this resolution be delayed or rejected.

| can boast of, and in that desperate battle of Wythlacoo. The knowledge of such a disposition of it would reach

chee he threw himself in front of the lines, and animated that section of the country in a short time, and the con

his soldiers by his example. If he had pursued the enesequence would be, that those who had charge of the my, leaving his 54 wounded men, he would have most public supplies there would refuse all aid; for they |

refuse all aid; for they probably shared the fate of the gallant and unfortunate would say, Congress bad refused them the power; or,

Dade and bis brave companions, without even a woundif they did, they must do it at their own expense. /ed man to tell the melancholy story of the bloody He hoped, therefore, that there would be no further tragedy delay. There could be no necessity for postponing it. We are not now to consider the conduct of the admin

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

istration, nor the acts of our military commanders. The Mr. T.,) the honorable gentleman commenced his regood or bad deeds of either are not now to be discussed marks by saying that, whatever may have been the fault or passed upon. All this belongs to history, and may of the Government, it was evident that now was not the be examined when I make an appeal, which I shall do, time to inquire into the causes which have produced the for an indemnification of the inhabitants who have been unfortunate state of things in Florida. He believed, ruined for the want of an adequate protection of this however, that it was due to his constitutents that the inGovernment. The question now is, whether the women quiry should be made, but that inquiry ought to be left and children of respectable planters, recently in the en- for another occasion; and, sir, (said Mr. T.,) for the last joyment of peace, bappiness, and contentment, suddenly two or three days, whenever this subject has been bedriven from their homes by a merciless and savage ene-fore the House, the honorable gentleman has repeatedly my, and forced into your military cantonments, to es- stated, and with great emhpasis, too, that the citizens of cape the tomahawk and scalping-knife, are to be left to Florida have been placed in their present unfortunate starve because the President has no power to relieve situation by the acts of this Government, and without them without a vote of Congress. Sir, what is the ob- any fault of their own. Mr. T. said if he voted for the ject of Government, if we are coolly and calmly to sit resolution, he should not do so because he believed the here talking about precedents? It is a case for a pre- | Executive justly chargeable with any the slightest omiscedent, if none existed; and it is one which in all sion of duty, or because he supposed the citizens of time would stand as a principle, to which humanity and Florida had any peculiar claims. justice can point as worthy of an American Congress. (Mr. WAITE explained. He did not say that any fault And are there no precedents to quiet the conscience of rested with the Government or its Departments. He the gentleman from Maine? (Mr. PARKS.] Let us look said they had taken every measure they could since the for authority in our legislation. Several years ago these hostilities had broken out. He was not prepared to merciless barbarians who hare committed these outrages speak of any thing before that, but it was due to his were themselves in a state of starvation, and Congress constituents that investigation should be made.] appropriated, by an almost unanimous vote, (every Mr. TURRILL said that, after what had fallen from the member from Maine voting for the bill,) a large sum to honorable gentleman from Florida during this debate, feed these Indians, without any pretext of a treaty, law, taken in connexion with the attack made by his colleague or precedent; and yet we want to search for precedents [Mr. GRANGER) upon the administration, if he were to for an important principle to feed those who have been vote for the resolution without giving any explanation, reduced to starvation by the enemies of this Govern- it might be construed into a tacit admission that there ment, growing out of the acts of the United States. The was some foundation for the charges which have been gentleman would doubtless have voted for the Indians, preferred against the executive department of the but not for these unfortunate sufferers, many of whom Government. Mr. T. felt as much sympathy for the have been reduced from affluence to penury by a sav. sufferers as the honorable gentleman from Florida, and age enemy. 'If authority is wanted, let us look back to would go as far as any gentleman to extend to them that the history of the past. Congress appropriated money prompt and efficient relief which their peculiar situation to send provisions to Caraccas, some years ago, to relieve demands; but he should not vote for the resolution bethe distresses of the people of South America. The cause he supposed that the Government was in fault, or President, out of an appropriation for repressing hostil because he believed the situation of the citizens of ities of the Indians on the Michigan frontier, ordered Florida to be such as to place them in a relation to the rations to be delivered to the suffering inhabitants until Government different from that of all other pioneers the end of the war. The settlers at New Madrid were along our western frontiers, whose spirit of enterprise indemnified for the damages occasioned by an earth has stimulated them, with the hope of gain, to press their quake; and, at every session since I have been in Con- settlements into the wilderness, where savage tribes still gress, a vote has been taken here to distribute wood to linger. They locate with a full knowledge of the hardthe suffering poor of this city. If gentlemen want pre- | ships and privations, of the difficulties and dangers they cedents, they have them in the repeated acts of this have to encounter; they are all alike entitled to the proGovernment in charity for the visitations of Providence, tection of the Government, and the citizens of Florida Sir, here are precedents; and, with these before us, what had no peculiar claims over other pioneers. are you to say to these people who have been ruined by 1 Mr. T. said the House ought not to act upon the imthe acts of the enemies of the country, and having es- pulse of the moment, without some investigation. He caped upon a sparse and thinly inhabited frontier, apprehended that the true state of things in Florida was are to be told that they have only escaped the savage not correctly understood. He believed that the numertomabawk and scalping-knife to perish by starvation? ical strength of the hostile force was greatly overrated.

I have had occasion before to express my gratitude to It would be found that, instead of having been remiss, this Congress, and that of the generous people I repre- the Executive had done more, much more, than the exsent, for the appropriations which have been made with igencies seemed to require. Long since, and before such unanimity, and for the suspension of all the rules, any serious apprehensions were entertained, even in to enable me to offer this proposition, and I expect a Florida, that there would be any hostile movements by still more signal occasion for expressing it in the vote the Seminoles, fourteen companies of regular troops which I now confidently expect to carry consolation and were placed at the disposal of General Clinch. In adcomfort to the hearts of those who look to you for pro dition to this, that officer was authorized by the Presitection in this calamitous crisis.

dent to call upon the Governor of Florida for any force Mr. TURRILL did not rise to discuss this subject, but which might be necessary to meet any emergency, and, merely to make a few remarks, that he might be dis- by a prompt and decisive blow, to put an effectual tertinctly understood in the vote he was about to give.mination to hostilities, should the Indians attempt to With the honorable gentleman from Florida, he sincere- make war upon the inhabitants. Orders had also been ly hoped that a party discussion would not again grow given to call upon the Governors of Georgia, Alabama, out of any proposition similar to the one before the House and South Carolina, for any additional force that might be Such a discussion was at all times to be deprecated, and required. The time has been when seven hundred undis. it was to be hoped that the honorable gentleman here- ciplined militia, under a skilful commander, contended after would not adopt a course calculated to provoke successfully against this very tribe of Indians; and Mr. guch a discussion. If I understand him correctly, (said I T. said, from the best information he could obtain, he

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

was satisfied that fat the battle of Wythlacoochee there Lansing, Laporte, Lawler, G. Lee, J. Lee, T. Lee, were troops enough in sight to have gained a decisive Luke Lea, Lincoln, Logan, Love, Lyon, Abijah Mann, victory, a victory which would have put an end to the Job Mann, Manning, Moses Mason, Samson Mason, war; but, for some cause or other, the militia did not cross | Maury, May, McComas, McKennan, McKeon, McKim, the small creek which separated them from the battle Mercer, Miller, Milligan Morgan, Morris, Muhlenberg, ground. They remainded idle spectators of the bloody Owens, Page, Parker, Patterson, Dutee J. Pearce, contest. There has said Mr. T.) been no fault, I repeat, J. A. Pearce, Pettigrew, Phelps, Phillips, Pinckney, no omission of duty, on the part of the Executive. All Potts, Reed, Rencher, John Reynolds, Joseph Reynhas been done, and more than could have been expected olds, Ripley, Roane, Rogers, Russell, Schenck, Seyor required. If censure is merited, it must rest else- mour, A. H. Shepperd, Shields, Shinn, Slade, Sloane, where, and not on the Executive. In voting for the Smith, Spangler, Sprague, Standefer, Steele, Storer, resolution, he would do so because he believed that the Sutherland, Taliaferro, Taylor, John Thomson, Toucey, relief asked for should be granted, in all cases where Towns, Turrill, Vanderpoel, Vinton, Wagener, Wardcitizens have been expelled from their homes and made well, Washington, Webster, Weeks, White, Whittlesey, penniless by any hostile force.

Lewis Williams, Wise--178. Mr. HARPER could not permit himself to doubt that Nais-Messrs. Campbell, Dromgoole, James Garland, this resolution would pass unanimously, and he was as Griffin, Hammond, Hardin, Jarvis, Loyall, McLene, tonished that any thing like party discussion should bave Parks, Patton, Robertson, Waddy Thompson, Sherrod grown out of such a subject as this. He would not stop Williams--14. to inquire who was right or who was wrong. He asked So the resolution was ordered to be engrossed; and if it could be possible that, while they sat there as a le- the same having been engrossed, was then read the third gislative body, voting public money for losses which time and passed. happened twenty years ago, they could refuse relief in Adjourned. this case? He hoped the vote would be taken without any further discussion. If a precedent was wanted, it

MONDAY, FEBRUARY 1. would be found in a vote given yesterday, to pay a man for a barn which was burnt in Virginia, by the enemy,

SLAVERY IN THE DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA. twenty years ago, and could the House hesitate to vote This being petition day, the House resumed, as the for the relief of these women and children?

unfinished business, the consideration of the motion of Mr. REYNOLDS, of Illinois, then moved the previous Mr. CUSHING, of Massachusetts, that the petition prequestion.

sented by him, of sundry citizens of Massachusetts, pray* Mr. PARKS raised the question of order, whether ing the abolition of slavery and the slave trade in the the resolution, being one of appropriation, must not | District of Columbia, be received. pass through the forms necessary for all appropria Mr. HAMMOND, who was entitled to the floor, rose tions, viz: that it could not be passed on the day of its and said, that when he had first demanded the prelimiintroduction, and must first be considered in Committee nary question of reception on the presentment of a simiof the Whole.

lar petition some weeks ago, it was his hope and expecThe CHAIR decided otherwise, on the ground that tation that it would be decided without debate. On it was not an original appropriation, but directed the every subsequent occasion when he had felt it his duty application of a sum of money already appropriated;

to make a similar demand, he had entertained the same whereupon,

desire, and had himself refrained from taking any part Mr. PARKS appealed from the decision of the Chair; in the discussions which had arisen. It was obvious, how. and, after a few words from Mr. MANN, of New York, ever, that gentlemen presenting these petitions were de in support of the Chair's decision, and Mr. PARKS termined to discuss them; and, after what had occurred against it, the decision of the Speaker was sustained by on last petition day, he concluded that no such petition the House.

would be offered to the House hereafter, without a preThe previous question was then seconded: ayes 95, liminary speech as well as motion. As much, therefore, noes 56; and the main question, which was on the en- as he felt indisposed to block the proceedings of the grossment of the resolution as modified and amended, House on this important day, he thought perhaps he had was then ordered to be put; and on the main question as well say at once what he had to say on this subject in

Mr. PINCKNEY asked for the yeas and nays; which its present stage, and by so doing he might facilitate the were ordered, and the result was: Yeas 178, nays 14, as business of the House. follows:

I listened, sir, (said Mr. H.,) with much pleasure to Yeas-Messrs. John Q. Adams, Chilton Allan, Heman the address of the gentleman from Massachusetts (Mr. Allen, Anthony, Asb, Ashley, Banks, Beale, Bean, CUSHING] who presented this petition, and I believe I Beaumont, Bockee, Bond, Borden, Bouldin, Bovee, | can say that I concur in every principle which be laid Boyd, Briggs, Brown, Bunch, John Calhoon, William down. I am sure he cannot have a more sacred regard B. Calhoun, Cambreleng, Casey, George Chambers, for the inestimable right of petition than I entertain. John Chambers, Chaney, Chapman, Chapin, Childs, But, really, I cannot see what the discussion of that right Clark, Cleveland, Coffee, Connor, Corwin, Craig, can have to do with the question before the House. Cramer, Crane, Cushing, Cushman, Davis, Denny, No one here desires to “pass a law" depriving “the Dickerson, Dickson, Dunlap, Efner, Evans, Ever-people of the right of peaceably assembling, and petiett, Fairfield, Farlin, Fowler, French, Fry, Pbilo tioning for a redress of grievances.” In this instance c. Fuller, William K. Fuller, Galbraith, Rice Garland, they have already so assembled. They have petitioned Gillet, Glascock, Grabam, Granger, Grantland, Graves, for the redress of their imaginary grievances. The pe. Grayson, Grennell, Haley, Joseph Hall, Hiland Hall, tition has been presented to the House. Its contents Hamer, Hannegan, Harper, Samuel S. Harrison, Haw. have been stated If it had been requested, the petition kins, Haynes, Hazeltine, Henderson, Hiester, Hoar, itself might have been read by the Clerk. We are, sir, Holsey, Hopkins, Howard, Howell, Hubley, Hunt, in full possession of its character and object. The petiHuntington, Huntsman, Ingersoll, Ingbam, William tioners and their representatives have performed their Jackson, Jabez Jackson, Janes, Joseph Johnson, part without “let or hindrance," and it is now our duty to Richard M. Johnson, Cave Johnson, Benjamin Jones, perform that which devolves on us. We may refuse to Judson, Kennon, Kilgore, Kinnard, Klingensmith, Lane, I receive the petition, and record it on our journals; or

« AnteriorContinuar »