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sent, especially when, by this indulgence, the sole liability is cast upon one of the sureties, whereas, if there had been ordinary diligence used, (even if there had been a defalcation on the part of the principal) the liability would have been shared by two others. But the committee believe that, not with standing this extraordinary indulgence, if the course advised by Gov. Worthington, and directed by the Treasury Department, had been pursued, the debt due the Government would have been long since paid from the property of the principal. That this course was not pursued, arose from the advice of the District Attorney, the agent of the Government. The committee are far from attributing blame to the Attorney: they entertain no doubt that he advised and acted as he believed most for the interest of the Government; but when the result must be injury to the G:.vernment or to Gov. Worthington, our sense of justiee (without reference to legal principles) dictates that the loss should fall on the Government. The committee are strongly inclined to the opinion that, had this defence been set up by Gov. Worthington to the action brought against him, it would have been sustained; and although judgment has been obtained, it was without opposition from Gov. Worthington, and on certain conditions, which, as he understood them, have not been complied with by the Government. True, the Agent of the Treasury is at issue with him as to the conditions agreed on; but, admitting Gov. Worthington to have been mistaken, he certainly ought not to be bound by any other conditions than those to which he assented; and the Government certainly should not avail itself of an advantage obtained over an individual from a misunderstanding, either on his part or that of its agent.
From these considerations, and from a full view of all the circumstances connected with this case, the committee are of opinion that the petitioners are, in justice and equity, entitled to the relief sought; and they, therefore, report a bill for that purpose.
JANUARY 5, 1831.
Mr. DUDLEY, from the Committee on Private Land Claims, made the fol
The Committee on Private Land Claims, to which was referred the
petition of Hopkins Rice, report: That the petitioner alleges a mistake was made in entering a haif-quarter section of the public lands in the State of Alabama. He submits, in proof, the Receiver's duplicate receipt of payment of the land, dated 27th December, 1828, and the joint deposition of himself and Benjamin Carpenter, that he intended to have entered a different half-quarter section. A bill is submitted for his relief.
CLEMENT B. PENROSE.
JANUARY 6, 1831.
Mr. WICKLIFFE, from the Committee on the Public Lands, to which had
been referred the case of the representatives of Clement B. Penrose, made the following
REPORT: The Committee on the Public Lands, to which was referred the petition
and papers of the representatives of Clement B. Penrose, report:
That Mr. Penrose was one of the commissioners appointed by the President of the United States, under the act of 1805, for the purpose of adjusting and settling private land claims in Upper Louisiana, under the treaty with France; that he continued in the discharge of his duties under said act and subsequent acts of Congress, all of which fixed his compensation, and at times varying the amount according to the services performed, as in the judgment of Congress then seemed to be just and ample. The whole amount of compensation fixed by the laws under which Mr. Penrose acted has been paid him as long ago as 1810. The present application for additional compeosation is based upon the fact, that the whole amount allowed and paid Mr. Penrose is not equal to a salary of $2,000 per annum, the amoun. allowed to the commissioners of Lower Louisiana.
If it was deemed necessary to maintain the conclusion to which the committee has arrived, to inquire into the reasons and motives which go. verned and influenced the former legislation of Congress, in fixing the compensation of the two respective boards of commissioners, they might be found in the different locations of the two commissioners, the relative expenses of the members, necessarily to be incurred, to say nothing of the greater hazard of life incident to a residence in Lower Louisiana.
The committee, however, believe, it is not necessary, at this late day, to inquire into the motives and reasons of Congress upon this subject. Mr. Penrose knew what salary and compensation his Government had fixed for his services, if he rendered them; and, if he did not then think it ample, he had the undoubted right to resign the office..
This claim has often been before Congress, and as often been rejected or not allowed; and the committee submit the following resolution:
Resolved, That the prayer of the petitioners ought not to be granted.