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H. OF R.
Reduction of the Army.
demand as a right. He denied having asserted public resources better husbanded. A gentleman that our finances were in a situation which would from Massachusetts, (Mr. Otis,) who had taken not permit the raising of more money, however exception to the term, had told us that we could not urgent the necessity. But he persisted in declar-squeeze” the public, without squeezing ourselves. ing that their condition was alarming, and that gen- Mr. R. said that he did not make professions of tlemen had, instead of offering proof to support uncommon patriotism; that it was not the least their opposition to the resolution, perpetually elu- of his objections to taxing his constituents that ded the question-which was whether there was he must also burden himself, and his property bedanger, in the first place; and whether, in the sec- ing of that kind which exposed it to be a squeezed" ond, these troops were competent to repel it. Gen- on all occasions, rendered him particularly averse tlemen could not even agree in the use to which to the operation. The member from Massachuthese troops were to be applied. Some asserted setts spoke lightly of our reluctance to part with that they were to act in the first instance; the mili- money. That gentleman was eminent in a lucratia not being in a state of preparation. Others, tive profession; and did he too derive a handsensible that they could not annihilate space and some revenue from talking, he might perhaps be be present everywhere, said that the militia could less averse to voting away money: oppose the foe until these troops could march to A gentleman from South Carolina, in a long detheir relief. If gentlemen were persuaded of the tail, to which I cannot, with my colleague, (Mr. danger of invasion there was no mode to convince Lee.) attach the epithet of a "learned history," them of their mistake. Mere impression could bas been so very candid as to allow that the friends not be effaced by argument. But was it true pol of the resolution (at least some of them) are acicy to expend the " sinews of war” upon the chance tuated by pure motives in the support which they of bringing these men into action ? " Mr. R. insist- have given it. I felt disposed to thank the gened that his
use of the term mercenary, as applied to tleman for this great degree of charity ; but, sir, the Army of the United States, was warranted. the burden of obligation was lifted from my shoulHe denied Mr. Lee's interpretation of the word, ders when he talked of modern patriotism, which which he had declared applicable only to foreign consisted in declamation against public burdens troops subsidized by another State. Mr. R. stated and a devotion to France. When it is considered that the original word signified wages, and had that those against whom these insinuations were no relation to foreign or domestic affairs. That thrown, had not only " drawn in love of country a mercenary army was one in which the military with their mother's milk," but were attached by art was carried on as a profession, in contradis- every tie which could bind the heart of man to tinction from a militia or patriotic army, composed the soil which gave him birth, and in which of citizens, without respect to station or fortune, their property consisted, the Committee would indiscriminately bound to defend their country. decide upon the motives by which their conduet He declared that he had no intention of receding had been actuated. When it was recollected that from any opinions which he had expressed, but they were supposed to have been peculiarly friendthere was a term which he had used yesterday, ly to the mission to France and io be highly anxand which (as no notice had been taken of it) he ious for its success, whilst the opponents io the would exchange-it was ragamuffin. It had been resolution exhibited a great coolness with regard extorted from him by the character and appear to a compromise of differences with that Republic, ance of the recruits in his country; men the most he trusted that the alarm with respect to the effect abject and worthless of the community; and to of the measure under discussion upon that negotheir protection, said he, we are told to confide our tiation would wear off. Mr. R. declared that alliberties and independence. Sir, we revolt from though he had become the object of what the the idea. We hold those blessings in contempt of member from South Carolina no doubt intended their protection. We hold them in defiance of all as a chastisement, he had no reason to regret it. force, foreign or domestic; we hold them, sir, by He was, on the contrary, glad that he had excited the tenure of that valor which obtained them. the gentleman's animadversion, since by that
Mr. R. denied that this tax would fall lightly means the Committee had been favored with the upon the community. In the tob
co country it very correct, luminous, and conclusive observations would be severely felt. The depreciation of that of the gentleman from Pennsylvania, (Mr. Gallaimportant article would alone cause great distress. TiN,) which must have carried conviction to every If to this effect gentlemen were insensible, it would unprejudiced mind, and would doubtless produce speak to them in a language which they would a decided approbation of the measure now under be obliged to hear, in the diminished amount of consideration. the revenue drawn from the imposts. The con- Mr. R. said that although this army had been sumption of foreign articles must be limited by ordered into existence so long, yet scarcely 4.000 the ability to pay for them. The large importa- men were raised; and, if the recruiting weni on, tion of lasi year was scarcely half sold. There were it would take a year perhaps to fill the regiments. goods enough on hand nearly sufficient to supply the Would not this be a stronger proof to France of ensuing year's demand. Under all these circum- our debility, than the disbanding of them, which stances we were hooted at for talking of economy. would indicate only a prudent application of reWhatever gentlemen might say or insinuate about sources to proper objects
. But, in fact, sir, this speeches calculated to insure popular favor, he circumstance is a proof the most decisive of the would never vote one shilling until he saw the inutility of this force. In spite of the system of
H. OF R. alarm, and the cry of danger from French inva - ship Flora, was presented to the House and read, sion, the good sense of the country still prevailed. stating that they have sustained considerable loss Our people knew that there was no immediate in consequence of an illegal deiention, as they condanger, nor can they hear it in every breeze; they ceive, of the said ship at the port of Edgartown, therefore refused to enter a service into which the in the State of Massachusetts, by the officers of indolent and worthless had been allured by the the United States, acting under the law entitled potent consideration of being clothed and fed at "An act to suspend the commercial intercourse bepublic expense. Would this tardiness to defend tween the United States and France, and the detheir country, sir, be exhibited were the danger pendencies thereof,” and praying compensation for imminent, as gentlemen had alleged ? He cau- the same. tioned the members of the House, particularly Ordered, That the said petition be referred to from the South, against lavishing, by the smallest the Committee of Commerce and Manufactures. estimate which had any pretension to correctness, at least two and a half millions, perhaps four, half of themselves and the other inhabitants of the
Two petitions of Cato West and others, in beupon so worthless an object. As to the proposal Mississippi Territory, were presented to the House to stop the enlistments and retain the officers upon and read; the first complaining of the political sys. pay, without any nominal duty to perform, he de- tem by which the said Territory is governed, and clared that it would justly excite the public indig- the present mode of its administration, and praying nation. With these remarks he concluded by that the operation of the ordinance of Congress, expressing a hope that the resolution would be passed the thirteenth of July, one thousand seven carried. The Committee now rose, and reported their as shall seem expedient, may be extended to the
hundred and eighty-seven, with such amendments disagreement to the resolution. The question was taken that the House do agree be passed confirining to the citizens of the said
said Territory: the other, praying that an act may with the Committee of the Whole in their said Territory all grants of lands legally and justly obdisagreement, and resolved in the affirmative- tained prior to the ratification of the late treaty yeas 60, nays 39, as follows:
with Spain. YEAS—William Alston, George Baer, Bailey Bart- Ordered, That the first of the said petitions be lett, James A. Bayard, John Bird, Jonathan Brace, John referred to Mr. ClaiborNE, Mr, Griswold, Mr. Brown, Christopher G. Champlin, William Cooper, HENDERSON, Mr. Notr, and Mr. Bartlett, to Samuel W. Dana, John Davenport, Franklin Daven examine the matter thereof, and report their opinport, John Dennis, George Dent, Joseph Dickson, Wil: ion thereupon to the House; and that the second liam Edmond, Thomas Evans, Abiel Foster, Dwight be referred to the committee to whom was referFoster, Jonathan Freeman, Henry Glen, Samuel Goode, Chauncey Goodrich, Elizur Goodrich, William Gordon, red, on the twenty-fourth ultimo, the petitions of Roger Griswold, William Barry Grove, Robert Good John Henderson and others, and of Thomas Burloe Harper, Thomas Hartley, Archibald Henderson, ling and others. William H. Hill, Benjamin Huger, James H. Imlay,
Mr. Oris, from the committee to whom was reJohn Wilkes Kittera, Henry Lee, Silas Lee, Samuel ferred, on the ninth ultimo, so much of the PresiLyman, James Linn, John Marshall, Lewis R. Morris, dent's Speech as relates to "a system of national Abraham Nott, Harrison G. Otis, Robert Page, Josiah defence, commensurate with our resources and the Parker, Jonas Platt, Leven Powell, John Reed, John situation of our country," made a report, in part;
a Rutledge, jun., Samuel Sewall, James Sheafe, William which was read, and ordered to lie on the table. Shepard, Samuel Smith, Benjamin Taliaferro, George Thatcher, John Chew Thomas, Richard Thomas, Peleg
A Message was received from the PRESIDENT OF Wadsworth, Robert Waln, Lemuel Williams, and Hen. THE UNITED STATEs, as follows:
Gentlemen of the Senate, and Nays—Theodorus Bailey, Phanuel Bishop, Robert Gentlemen of the House of Representatives : Brown, Gabriel Christie, Matthew Clay, William C. C. A report made to me, on the fifth of this month, by Claiborne, John Condit, Thomas T. Davis, John Daw- the Secretary of War, contains various matters, in which son, Joseph Eggleston, Lucas Elmendorf, John Fow the honor and safety of the nation are deeply interested ; ler, Albert Gallatin, Edwin Gray, Andrew Gregg, John I transmit it therefore to Congress, and recommend it A. Hanna, Joseph Heister, David Holmes, George Jack-to their serious consideration.
JOHN ADAMS. son, James Jones, Aaron Kitchell, Michael Leib, Mat. thew Lyon, Nathaniel Macon, Peter Muhlenberg, An- United STATES, Jan. 13, 1800. thony New, John Nicholas, Joseph H. Nicholson, John The said Message, and report accompanying the Randolph, John Smilie, Richard Stanford, David Stone, same, were read, and ordered to be referred to the Thomas Sumter, John Thomson, Abram Trigg, John committee to whom was referred, on the ninth ulTrigg, Philip Van Cortlandt, Joseph B. Varnum, and timo, so much of the President's Speech as relates Robert Williams.
to "a system of national defence, commensu
rate with our resources and the situation of our MONDAY, January 13.
country.' SAMUEL J. Cabell, from Virginia, appeared, pro
Ordered, That the petition of Charles Pettit, duced his credentials, was qualified, and took his presented the 31st ultimo, and which was laid on seat in the House.
the table, be referred to the Committee of Claims. A memorial of Paul Bentalou, and others, mer- Ordered, That the report of the Secretary of chants, of the city of Baltimore, late owners of the War, on the seventh instant, exhibiting theexpenses
H. OF R.
JANUARY, 1800. of the national armory at Springfield, in the State
Tuesday, January 14. of Massachusetts, which lay on ihe table, be referred to the committee to whom was referred, on the “An act to provide for mitigating or remitting the
An engrossed bill to repeal part of an act, entitled ninth ultimo, so much of the President's Speech forfeitures, penalties, and disabilities, accruing in as relates to "a system of national defence, com certain cases therein mentioned,” was read the mensurate with our resources and the situation of
third time and passed. our country;" with power to report thereon by bill,
Mr. Griswold, from the Committee of Revisal or bills, or otherwise. the United States, of the 8th instant, transmitting States have expired, or are near expiring, made a Ordered, That the Message of the President of and Unfinished Business, to whom it was referred
to examine and report what laws of the United sundry statements relative to the Mint of the Uni; farther report, in part; which was read, and ordered ted States, prepared by the officers thereof, and which lay on the table, be referred to Mr. Dwight House to-morrow.
to be committed to a Committee of the whole Foster, Mr. CHAUNCEY GOODRICH, and Mr. Page. On a motion made and seconded that the House the Whole on the motion to amend the “ Act for
The House resolved itself into a Committee of do come to the following resolution, to wit: Resolved, by the Senate and
House of Representatives laying duties on stamped vellum, parchment, and of the United States of America in Congress assembled, paper;" and, after some time spent therein, Mr. That the Secretary of State be, and he is hereby, au- SPEAKER resumed the Chair, and Mr. Morris rethorized and directed to procure and transmit to the Gov. ported that the Committee had had the said motion ernor of the State of North Carolina, a number of copies under consideration, and come to a resolution of the laws of the United States, equal to the number thereupon ; which he delivered in at the Clerk's which the Secretary was heretofore authorized to trans- table, where the same was twice read, and agreed mit to the Governor of the said State, by an act, entitled to, as fo’lows: “An act for the more general promulgation of the laws Resolved, that it is expedient so to amend the of the United States,” to be deposited and distributed “Act for laying duties on stamped vellum, parchagreeably to the provisions of the said act, for the use ment, and paper," as to abolish the offices thereby and information of the citizens of the United States established for the stamping of vellum, parchment, within the said State :
and paper, in the several districts of the United Ordered, That the said motion be referred to States, and to establish, at the seat of Government, Mr. Hill, Mr. KITTERA, and Mr. Nicholas.
one general office for that purpose. Resolved, That the Committee of Claims be in- Ordered, That a bill or bills be brought in, purstructed to inquire whether any, and, if any, what, suant to the said resolution, and that the Commitalterations ought to be made in the law passed on tee of Ways and Means do prepare and bring in the twelfth day of June, one thousand seven hun- the same. dred and ninety-eight, entitled "An act respecting
CASE OF MR. RANDOLPH. loan office and final settlement certificates, indents of interest, and the unfunded or registered debt A Message was received from the PRESIDENT credited in the books of the Treasury.
of the UNITED STATES, as follows: Resolved, That the act, entitled "An act con- Gentlemen of the House of Representatives: cerning certain fisheries of the United States, and As the enclosed letter, from a member of your House, for the regulation and government of the fishermen received by me in the night of Saturday, the eleventh employed therein." and all acts for amendment of instant, relates to the privileges of the House, which, the same, be referred to the Committee of Com- in my opinion, ought to be inquired into in the House merce and Manufactures, to consider and report itself, if anywhere, I have thought proper to submit the as to the expediency of continuing the same, and whole letter and its tendencies to your consideration, whether any, and, if any, what, alterations may
without any other comments on its matter or style : but, be necessary therein.
as no gross impropriety of conduct, on the part of perThe House, resolved itself into a Committee of sons holding commissions in the Army or Navy of the the Whole on the bill to repeal part of an act, en
United States, ought to pass without due animadversion, titled "An act to provide for mitigating the forfeit- I have directed the Secretary of War and the Secretary ures, penalties, and disabilities, accruing in certain and to report to me, without delay, such a statement of
of the Navy to investigate the conduct complained of, cases therein' mentioned;" and, after some time facts as will enable me to decide on the course which spent therein, the Committee rose and reported duty and justice shall appear to prescribe. their agreement to the same without amendment.
JOHN ADAMS. Ordered, That the said bill be engrossed, and UNITED STATES, Jan. 14th, 1800. read the third time to-morrow.
Resolved, That a committee be appointed to prepare and report a bill to continue in force "An act
CHAMBER OF REPRESENTATIVES OF THE U.S., declaring the consent of Congress to a certain act
11th January, 24th of Independence. of the State of Maryland," and to continue "An
Sir: Known to you only as holding, in common act declaring the consent of Congress to certain with yourself, the honorable station of servant to the acts of the States of Maryland, Georgia, and Rhode same sovereign people, and disclaiming all pretensions Island and Providence Plantations, so far as the to make to you any application which, in the general same respects the States of Georgia and Rhode estimation of men, requires the preface of apology, I Island;" and that the Committee of Revisal, &c., shall
, without the circumlocution of compliment, prodo prepare and bring in the same.
ceed to state the cause which induces this address
H. OF R. For words of a general nature, uttered on the floor of injurious to the country. The power of the Comthis House, and addressed, in my official capacity, to mander-in-chief of the Army, in his opinion, was the Chairman of the Committee of the Whole, and sufficient to afford a remedy, and to restrain men urged with a view to effect the reduction of a Military under his command from giving personal abuse Establishment, I have been grossly and publicly in- and insult. And he therefore disclaimed any wish sulted, by two officers of the army (or navy, I know that the House should take measures for his pronot which) with evident intention to provoke me to a tection. conduct which, in some sort, might justify the hostile
The voice of the House appeared to be unanidesigns which they manifestly entertained towards me, and from the execution of which, I believe, they were
mous for the commitment, and several members only deterred by the presence of several of my friends expressed an opinion that the President, in submit(members of this House) who felt themselves implicated ting the subject to the House, had acted judiciousin an insult, which, although more particularly offered ly, it being a question on which he could not, dare to one, was certainly levelled at all.
not, decide. It was a Constitutional prerogative I am acquainted with the name of one only of these yested in that House alone, and that House, after unfortunate young men, who appear to have made so having a statement of facts, were to be the sole false an estimate of true dignity of character; who judges of them. The wish of the complainant to seem to have mistaken brutality for spirit
, and an armed suspend inquiry ought not to have any weight; combination against the person of an individual for an for if a member was to be insulted for language indication of courage. He was called, I think, Mc- made use of in debate, there was an end to all leKnight-rank unknown,-and, to my best recollection, gislation, and they might as well return to their of the navy. Mr. Christie, a member of this House, homes at once. appeared to know him; and that gentleman, with Capt.
The said Message, together with the letter acCampbell Smith, who, as I understood, endeavored to companying the same, were read, and ordered to deter those rash youths from their scheme, and whose be referred to Mr. Chauncey Goodrich, Mr. Maconduct would evince, if indeed there were any need of proof, that the character of the man and the citizen con, Mr. KITTERA, Mr. Jones, Mr. Sewall, Mr. is not incompatible with the profession of the soldier, ROBERT WILLIAMS, and Mr. Bayard. can give an ac ount of the various instances of miscon:
The House then resolved itself into a Commitduct which were exhibited by the parties. Mr. Van tee of the Whole on the bill to reform the SupeRensselaer, the Lieutenant Governor of New York, Mr. rior Court of the Territory of the United States Nicholson, Mr. Glenn, and Mr. Macon, of the House Northwest of the river Ohio; and, after some of Representatives, were likewise present at these trans- time spent therein, rose and had leave to sit again. actions. • Having stated the fact, it would be derogatory to your character, sir, for me to point out the remedy, which it
WEDNESDAY, January 15. is your province to provide, nor shall I descend from the respect which I owe myself to declare what are not the serving as a member of the committee to whom
Ordered, That Mr. Macon be excused from considerations which govern my conduct on this occasion. So far as they relate to this application, addressed was referred the Message received, yesterday, from to you in a public capacity, they can only be supposed the President of the United States, and that Mr. by you to be of a public nature; and it is enough for Hanna be appointed in his stead. me to state that the independence of the Legislature has
On motion, it was been attacked, the majesty of the people, of which you Resolved, That the Clerk of this House be diare the principal representative, insulted, and your au- rected to furnish each of the Members of this thority contemned. In their name, I demand that a pro- House with a set of the laws passed by the Fifth vision commensurate with the evil be made, and which Congress of the United States. will be calculated to deter others from any future attempt The House proceeded to consider the report to introduce the reign of terror into our country. In ad- made on Monday last, by the committee to whom dressing you, in the plain language of man, I give you, was referred so much of the President's Speech as sir, the best proof that I can afford of the estimation in relates to “a system of national defence, commenwhich I hold your office and your understanding; and surate with our resources and the situation of our I assure you with truth that I am, with respect, your country," which lay on the table; and the same fellow citizen, JOHN RANDOLPH, Jr.
being again read, in the words following; to wit: The PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES.
“ That, in the opinion of the committee, no such Mr. KITTERA moved that the Message and let material change in the state of the foreign relations of ter accompanying it be referred to a Select Com- the United States has happened, as would justify a remittee.
linquishment of any of the means of defence heretofore Mr. Randolph hoped it would not. It was
adopted by Congress, but that the national honor and far from his expectation, he said, when he addressed interest in the present posture of affairs make it pruthe letter now before the House to the President, event: but while danger still threatens our country, yet
dent and necessary to continue prepared for the worst that it would have been made the subject of a com- circumstances having diminished the probability of an munication. Had he thought the House could immediate invasion, the attention of the committee has have remedied the abuse complained of, he would been particularly directed to the state of the Military have entered his complaint here; but he did not Establishment, with a view to reconcile safety with conceive it within their jurisdiction; and he was economy, to preserve the establishment, and retrench opposed to it, as being a bad precedent which might the expense." The annexed abstract and letter from at some future period be prostituted to purposes | the Secretary of War exhibit the state of the twelve
H. OF R.
new regiments of infantry, according to the latest re- Ordered, That the said petition be referred to
Mr. Otis, from the committee 10 whom was but to suspend the recruiting service until the approach referred, on the twenty-third ultimo, the petition of danger shall compel the Government to resume it
. of Robert Sturgeon, made a report; which he deThis project combines the advantage of an important livered in at the Clerk's table, where the same reduction of the national expense, with that of having at command a body of officers ready for service upon short was twice read, and considered': Whereupon, notice, and a number of disciplined troops sufficient for
Resolved, That Robert Sturgeon be discharged the present occasion.
from his confinement, upon a judgment in favor “The committee, therefore, submit the following re- of the United States, upon his making an assigosolution :
ment of all estate, real and personal, to which he " Resolved, That, from and after the
may be entitled, to the acceptance of the Secretary next, all enlistments under an act, entitled “ Ản act to of the Treasury: Provided, however, that the said augment the Army of the United States, and for other judgment shall remain in full force against any purposes," shall be suspended until the next session, property which he may hereafter acquire. unless war should break out between the United States Ordered, That a bill or bills be brought in, purand a foreign European Power, or in case imminent suant to the said resolution; and that Mr. OTIS, danger of invasion of their territory by any such Power Mr. Bird, and Mr. STONE, do prepare and bring shall, in the opinion of the President of the United in the same. States, be discovered to exist.”
The House then resolved itself into a CommitThe question was taken that the House do agree tee of the Whole on the bill to suspend, in part, to the resolution contained in the said report, and an act, entitled "An act to augment the Army resolved in the affirmative.
of the United States;" and, after some time spent Ordered, That a bill or bills be brought in pur- therein, the Committee rose, reported progress, and suant to the said resolution, and that Mr. Otis, had leave tu sit again. Mr. Nicholas, Mr. EDMOND, Mr. Abiel FOSTER, Mr. Champlin, Mr. Wals, and Mr. Hill, do pre
Monday, January 20. pare and bring in the same.
A memorial of the General Assembly of the Ordered, That the Committee of the Whole Territory of the United States Northwest of the House to whom was referred the report of the Com- river Ohio, signed by Edward Tiffin, Speaker of mittee of Revisal and Unfinished
Business, made the House of Representatives, and H. Vandeburg, yesterday, recommending the appointment of a President of the Council, stating the unhappy situcommittee to prepare and bring in a bill to con- ation of a large number of the citizens of the countinue in force, for a limited time, the act, enti, ty of Hamilton, in the said Territory, residing on tled “An act further to suspend the commercial lands purchased from John Cleves Symmes, unintercourse between the United States and France, der a conviction that the said Symmes had a right and the dependencies thereof,” be discharged from to dispose of the same in virtue of his contract the consideration of the same; and that the said with the United States; that, having paid their report be referred to the Committee of Commerce money into the hands of Judge Symmes, they are and Manufactures, with power to report thereon deprived of the means of making their payments
, by bill or bills, or otherwise, and with instruction to inquire and report in what manner, and to what requesting that such indulgence may be extended
as at present required by the United Siates; and effect, the act suspending commercial intercourse to the said purchasers as to the wisdom of Conwith France has been executed.
gress may seem meet.
Ordered, That the said petition be referred to
the committee appointed, on the twenty-fourth Mr. Otis, from the committee appointed, pre- alterations are necessary in the laws providing for
ultimo, to inquire whether any, and, if any, what, sented a bill to suspend. in part, an act, entitled the sale of the lands of the United Siates North"An act to augment the Army of the United
west of the Ohio. States, and for other purposes ;" which was read twice and committed to a Committee of the Whole the Whole on the bill to establish an uniform sys
The House resolved itself into a Committee of House to-morrow.
tem of bankruptcy throughout the United States;
and, after some time spent therein, the Committee Friday, January 17.
rose and had leave to sit again. A petition of sundry inhabitants of the North
A Message was received from the PRESIDENT western Territory, northwest of the Great Miami OF THE UNITED States, as follows: river, was presented to the House and read, pray- Gentlemen of the Senate, and ing a repeal or amendment of the law providing Gentlemen of the House of Representatives : for the sale of the lands of the United States in the In obedience to the law, I transmit to Congress my Territory Northwest of the river Ohio, and above annual account of the contingent fund. the mouth of Kentucky river.