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had been induced to desire that this important subject should be referred to a select committee. He again insisted, that when the subject of a national bank had been a second time, and in a more explicit and particular manner, recommended to the consideration of the House, it would not be respectful to the Chief Magistrate to send it back to a committee who had made up their opinion in opposition to that intimated by the Executive. He had not the least doubt that if the light of truth could be made manifest to them, the minds of those gentlemen were open to conviction on this as on every other subject; but all knew that truth was often difficult of access, and sometimes not less difficult to be received, and this acknowledgment involved no imputation whatever on the uprightness of that committee. He had another reason for wishing the amendment to prevail; it was not to be expected that, unless the question was submitted to a few minds which felt a strong interest in regard to it, it would be examined with that application and industry which were indispensable to the full development of the subject. The suggestion of the President involved a reference to the amount and places of deposite, their effect upon commerce, &c. &c. which could not be gone into at large unless by a committee specially devoted to the subject. If the House approached the investigation through its Committee of Ways and Means, could it expect as fill and detailed a report as if by a select committee, whose views corresponded with those of the President? He knew that gentlemen would object to his proposition; that the reference to a select committee would excite a belief in the community that the United States' Bank was not to be rechartered, and thus greatly depress the price of bank stock. Admit that such might be the effect, was this a valid objection? Was the House bound to preclude inquiry on a most important subject, from a fear that the discussion might affect the price of stocks? Suppose the question should be deferred, it must come up at last; and would it not affect stock then as much as now? Mr. W. said, when the question came up on rechartering the bank as now organized, he should vote against it, because its benefits enured to individuals and not to the Government, who might by means of such an institution contribute to relieve the people of the Union from unjust taxation to the amount perhaps of millions annually. He should, however, abstain from entering upon the merits of the main question at this time. He was aware that it would not be in order to touch upon them. He had had the honor of offering a resolution on the same subject at the last session, and should renew it at the present session. His only motive then, as now, had been to promote an inquiry after truth. He believed that the appointment of a select committee would elicit a mass of facts which it was desirable to obtain, and which would not otherwise come before the House, tending to show whether the measure proposed by the Executive were practicable or not. Mr. CAMBRELENG, of New York, said that if the yeas, and nays had not been ordered on this subject; he should not have risen. He was opposed to the amendment of the gentleman from Georgia, because he viewed the whole question as premature at this time. When the proper time arrived for its consideration, he should cer. tainly be in favor of referring it to a select committee. It had been so referred when the bank petitioned for a renewal of its charter. He had the greatest respect for the gentleman at the head of the Committee of Ways and Means, [Mr. McDUFFIF, but he thought the subject ought never to come before the House until the bank should again appear as a petitioner for the renewal of its charter. The President, in presenting. his message to Congress, had glanced his eye over the whole interests of the country, and had, very properly, given to the House his views of a great and weighty question of public policy. It was a question which involved the circulating medium, and, in
fact, the property of the whole nation. As such, the question was before the people—it was a question for the nation to decide. In this House, it was not fairly presented as a subject of inquiry until the bank should apply for a new charter; when that time arrived, Mr. C. said he should be for sending it to a select committee; but at present the whole matter was premature. The question was then taken on the motion of Mr. WAYNE, and decided in the negative, by yeas and nays, as follows: YEAS.--Messrs. Alexander, Allen, Angel, Barnwell, Baylor, Bell, James Blair, John Blair, Boon, Borst, Brodhead, Carson, Chandler, Claiborne, Clay, Coke, Conner, Daniel, Davenport, Warren R. Davis, Earll, Findlay, Ford, Foster, Fry, Gaither, Gordon, Hall, Halsey, Hammons, Haynes, Hinds, Leonard Jarvis, Cave Johnson, Kennon, Perkins King, Lamar, Lea, Leavitt, Lecompte, Lewis, Loyall, Lumpkin, Thomas Maxwell, Monell, Norton, Nuckolls, Pettis, Polk, Potter, Powers, Rencher, Roane, Sanford, Scott, Augustine H. Shepperd, Shields, Standefer, Taliaferro, Wiley Thompson, John Thomson, Trezvant, Tucker, Wayne, Weeks, Wickliffe, Yancey.— 67. NAYS.–Messrs. Alston, Anderson, Arnold, Bailey, Barber, Barringer, Bartley, Beekman, Bockee, Brown, Buchanan, Butman, Cahoon, Cambreleng, Chilton, Clark, Coleman, Condict, Cooper, Cowles, Craig, Crane, Crawford, Creighton, Crocheron, Denny, Dickinson, Draper, Drayton, Dudley, Duncan, Eager, Ellsworth, G. Evans, J. Evans, H. Everett, Finch, Gilmore, Gorham, Green, Grennell, Harvey, Hemphill, Hodges, Hoffman, Holland, Howard, Hughes, Hunt, Huntington, Ingersoll, Irwin, Irvin, Jennings, Johns, Kendall, Kincaid, A. King, Lent, Letcher, Lyon, Magee, Mallary, Marr, Martindale, Lewis Maxwell, McCreery, McIntire, Mercer, Miller, Mitchell, Muhlenberg, Overton, Patton, Pearce, Pierson, Randolph, Reed, Richardson, Rose, Russel, William B. Shepard, Semmes, Sill, Smith, Speight, Ambrose Spencer, Sprigg, Stanbery, Sterigere, Storrs, Strong, Sutherland, Swann, Swift, Taylor, Tracy, Vance, Varnum, Verplanck, Vinton, Washington, Whittlesey, Edward D. White, Williams, Wilson, Wingate, Young.—108. So the House refused to amend the resolution, and the resolution, as reported by the Committee of the Whole, was agreed to. The House then adjourned.
FRIDAY, DECEMBER 10.
After the reception of a great number of petitions and resolutions:
On motion of Mr. BUCHANAN, in order to give time for the House to make the preliminary arrangements for the trial of Judge Peck, which commences in the Senate chamber at 12 o'clock on Monday next, the House agreed to meet at 11 o'clock on that day.
And then the House adjourned.
Mox DAY, DEcEMBER 13.
JUDGE PECK. o
Mr. BUCHANAN, on behalf of the managers appointed to conduct the impeachment against Judge James H. Peck, submitted the following report, which was agreed to:
The Committee of Managers appointed by the House of Representatives to conduct the impeachment against James H. Peck, Judge of the district court of the United States for the district of Missouri, report, that they have had under consideration the answer of Judge Peck to the article of impeachment exhibited against him by the House, and recommend the adoption of the following re
By the House of Representatives of the United States to the answer and plea of James H. Peck, Judge of the district court of the United States for the district of Missouri, to the article of impeachment exhibited against him by the said House of Representatives.
The House of Representatives of the United States having considered the answer and plea of James H. Peck, Judge of the district court of the United States for the district of Missouri, to the article of impeachinent against him by them exhibited, in the name of themselves and of all the people of the United States, reply, that the said James H. Peck is guilty in such manner as he stands impeached; and that the House of Representatives will be ready to prove their charges against him at such convenient time and place as shall be appointed for that purpose.
Resolved, That the foregoing replication be put in to the answer and plea of the aforesaid James H. Peck, on behalf of this House; and that the managers be instructed to maintain the said replication at the bar of the Senate, at such time as shall be appointed by the Senate.
DUTIES ON SUGAR.
Mr. HAYNES, of Georgia, submitted the following resolution: - Resolved, That the Committee of Ways and Means be instructed to inquire into the expediency of repealing the duties on sugar imported from foreign countries into the United States. Mr. SUTHERLAND required that the question be taken upon the consideration of the resolution; and Mr. WILLIAMS demand the yeas and nays on the question. They were ordered by the House, and, being taken, stood as follows: YEAS.–Messrs. Alexander, Alston, Anderson, Angel, Archer, Armstrong, Barbour, Barnwell, Barringer, Bay. lor, Bell, James Blair, John Blair, Boon, Brodhead, Brown, Cambreleng, Campbell, Carson, Claiborne, Clay, Coke, Conner, Craig, Crocheron, Warren R. Davis, Desha, De Witt, Draper, Drayton, Dudley, Earll, Gaither, Gordon, Hals, Halsey, Hammons, Harvey, Haynes, Hinds, Holland, Hoffman, Hubbard, Jarvis, Jennings, Cave Johnson, Lamar, Lea, Lecompte, Lent, Lewis, Loyall, Lumpkin, Thomas Maxwell, McDuffie, McIntire, Mitchell, Monell, Nuckolls, Patton, Pettis, Polk, Potter, Powers, Rencher, Roane, Sanford, William B. Shepard, Augustine H. Shepperd, Shields, Speight, Richard Spencer, Stanbery, Standeser, Taliaferro, Wiley Thompson, Tucker, Verplanck, Wayne, Wecks, Campbell P. White, Williams, Wilson.—83. NAYS.–Messrs. Arnold, Bailey, Barber, Bartley, Bates, Beekman, Bockee, Borst, Buchanan, Butman, Cahoon, Clark, Coleman, Condict, Cooper, Coulter, Cowles, Crane, Crawford, Creighton, Crowninshield, Oaniel, Denny, Dickinson, Doddridge, Duncan, Dwight, Foger, Ellsworth, George Evans, Horace Everett, F. 1, y, Finch, Ford, Forward, Fry, Gilmore, Green, Gre cli. Gurley, Hawkins, Hemphill, Hodges, Howard, 1...goos, Hunt, Huntington, Ihrie, Ingersoll, Irwin, Irvin, Richard M. Johnson, Kendall, Kennon, Kincaid, Perkins King, Adam King, Leavitt, Lyon, Magee, Mallary, Marr, Mait.... tale, Lewis Maxwell, McCreery, Miller, Muhlenberg, Overton,
To the House of Representatives of the United States:
I transmit to the House of Representatives printed copies of the convention between the United States and his Majesty the King of Denmark, concluded at Copenhagen on the 28th of March, 1830, and ratified by and with the advice and consent of the Senate.
WAsili NgtoN, December 10, 1830.
The message and convention were referred to the Committee on Foreign Affairs, and ordered to be printed.
The SPEAKER likewise laid before the House the following letter, which was read; and, on motion of Mr. SPENCER, of New York, ordered to be referred to the Committee on Agriculture:
PHILADELPHIA, December 7, 1830. SIR: You will receive with this letter a silken flag, bearing the colors of the United States. This flag is made entirely of American silk, reeled from the cocoons, prepared and woven by Mr. John D'Homergue, silk manufacturer. The coloring has been done by the best artist he could procure in the city of Philadelphia, he himself . not professing to be a dyer. The staff of this flag, with the eagle, measures about fifteen feet; the flag itself is twelve feet and a half long, and six feet wide. It is woven all in one piece, without a seann. I beg, sir, you will be so good as to present this flag, most respectfully, in my name, to the honorable House over which you preside, as a sample of American industry, thus applied, for the first time, to the most valuable of American productions; and as a result of the efforts they have made during the last five years for the promotion of the important branch of agriculture to which we owe the rich material of which this flag is composed. I have the honor to be, with the highest respect, sir, your most obedient and most humble servant, PETER S. DUPONCEAU. Hon. As DREw STEv ENsox, • Speaker of the House of Representatires.
"A message was received from the Senate, informing the House that they were in their public chamber, and ready to proceed on the trial of the impeachment of James H Peck: and that seats were provided for the accommodation of the members of the House.
Whereupon, Mr. BUCHANAN submitted the following resolution; which was carried, mem. con.
Resolved, That a message be sent to the Senate to inform them that this House have agreed to a replication, On "...P. to the answer and plea of James ii. Peck, Judge of the district court of the United States for the district of Missouri, to the article of impeachment exhibited to the Senate against him by this is ouse, and have directed the managers appointed to conduct the said inpeachment to carry the said replication to the Senate, and to maintain the same at the bar of the Senate, at such time as shall be appointed by the Senate.
ELECTION OF CHAPLAIN.
Mr. TAYLOR moved that the House do now proceed to the election of a chaplain; which motion was agrecd to. Messrs. A Ron ER, Whitrllsby, and Fun waiti were
Pearce, Pierson, Ramsey, Reed, Richardson, Rose, Rus-
The SPEAKER laid befo: , "e House the following message from the President of one United States:
appointed tellers: whereupon, Mr. ARCHIER nominated the reverend Mr. Post; Mr. FORWARD nominated the reverend Mr. Thomas; Mr. W H iTTI.E.S EY nominated the reverend Mr. Gurley; and Mr. HUBBARD nominated the reverend Mr. Paifrey. On counting the first ballot, it appeared that 180 votes were given in-necessary to a choice 91; of which Mr. Post received 83; Mr. Gurley, 46; Mr. Palfrey, 34; Mr. Thomas, 12; and there were five blank votes. After two other ineffectual ballotings,
Dec. 14, 1830.] :
On the fourth ballot there were 170 votes—- necessary to a choice, 86: Mr. Gurley received 91; Mr. Post, 75; and there were four scattering. So the reverend Ralph R. Gurley was duly elected Chaplain on the part of the House of Representatives for the present session. Mr. John SON, of Kentucky, remarked that there was a difference of opinion, at least in his quarter of the House, as to the order which should be taken in attending the trial of Judge Peck, in the Senate of the United States. Some were of opinion that the House should attend in a body; others thought that it would only be necessary for the managers on the part of the House to attend during the trial. At the last session, said Mr. J., the House were in attendance; and it was thought by many members that the same course would be pursued at this session. He wished, for his own part, to have a correct understanding of the subject, and he would thank the Chair to give to the House his opinion as to the course that should be pursued. The SPEAKER stated that the resolution of the House at the last session was confined to its attendance before the court of impeachment for a single day. The Clerk, however, would read the resolution. [The resolution having been read, which was, in effect, that the House would in a body attend in the Senate chamber for a certain day, to support the charges against Judge Peck]—— Mr. BUCHANAN rose, and observed, that there seemed to be a misunderstanding upon the subject. With the permission of the House he would state the course that had been pursued by the managers. They had examined all the precedents which had occurred in this country, to guide them to a correct performance of their duty. It was ascertained that, since the adoption of the present constitution, there had been three impeachments, viz. those of Messrs. Blount, and Pickering, and Judge Chase. On the trial of the two first, the House did not attend in a body, but left it to the managers to conduct the impeachment; on the trial of Judge Chase, they did attend every day. It not being considered by the managers of the pending trial that any principle so important as to interrupt the legislative business of the House was involved in the present case, they had gone to the Senate this day, as managers, and presented to that body the replication agreed upon by the House. Mr. B. further remarked, that he had consulted the English precedents. On the trial of Warren Hastings, the House of Commons attended at the commencement of the trial, but they did not continue to do so. On the trial of the Earl of Macclesfield, they did not attend until his conviction by the House of Lords; and then they attended in consequence of a message having been sent them by that body, that they were ready to pronounce judgment on the impeached, if the House of Commons would attend and demand it. - Mr. B. would not advocate the attendance or non-attendance of the House at the trial which was to take place. He had felt it to be his duty to state the course which had been pursued on previous occasions of impeachment, and what had been done by the managers in the present case, and to state that his sole object was to do that which would best please the House. No motion having been made this morning on the subject, the managers had felt it to be their imperative duty to attend at the bar of the Senate, and present the replication which had been agreed upon. Mr. JOHNSON, of Kentucky, said, that one great object of his rising had been to obtain from the managers an explanation of the course which they had taken. For his part, he wanted to go on with the public business. He recollected, however, the great debate in the Senate at the last session, and that it was nearly impossible to retain a quorum of the House; if it were probable such would be the case on the present occasion, and the House should be compelled to adjourn from day to day for want of a quo
rum, how much soever he wished the public business at
tended to, he would prefer that the House itself should
conduct the impeachment.
minded him that there was no proposition before the
House, and suggested the propriety of his submitting a re
solution on the subject. - - -
TUEs DAY, DEcEMBER 14.
A memorial was presented by Mr. COULTER, on the subject of Sunday mails--recommending that the mail should be discontinued on the sabbath. On its presentation, he moved its reference to the Committee on the Post Office. Mr. Johnson, of Ky., objected to giving the petition the direction moved by the gentleman who presented it. He observed, that if the authors of the petition had an advocate or advocates on this floor, he was perfectly willing that the report formerly made by the Post. Office committee on the general subject should at any time, be called up. Let the House hear what gentlemen had to say on a subject which he had always thought, and would now say, ought never to have been brought into the Hall of Congress. He was desirous to hear what could be said in favor of Congress interfering with religious considerations. The committee had acted on the subject, and it would not do so again, unless compelled to do so by an express order of the House. He hoped the gentleman from Pennsylvania [Mr. Coulton] would acquiesce in the motion which he would now make, that the petition be laid upon the table, or, rather, that it be referred to a Committee of the Whole on the state of the Union; and he made that motion. Mr. COULTER said that he felt very indifferent what direction should be given to the petition. He had always considered it proper, when the House was addressed in a decorous manner, on any subject proper for legislation, to give the petition a respectful consideration. In the present case, as the course indicated by the chairman of the Post Office committee was likely to effect the very object which the petitioners had in view, viz. to have the subject discussed, and obtain some action of Congress in relation to it, he was entirely willing it should be adopted. He had made a different motion, only out of the courtesy which he supposed due to the Post Office committee, and in compliance with the custom of the House. He had no doubt that the honorable chairman of the Post Office committee was both competent and willing to meet the discussion, which it was the object of the prayer of the petitioners to invite. If they had an advocate in the House, that advocate would doubtless avail himself of the privilege of debating the question without being specially invited so to do by any one. Mr. C. said it was not his purpose to avow himself as their champion, as he did not feel himself pledged to any particular course in the matter; he should endeavor, on this as on other occasions, to do what he considered his duty to his constituents demanded. If that duty led him to advocate the cause of these petitioners, he should be ready, in so doing, to meet even the gentleman from Kentucky. Mr. JOHNSON again rose, but the SPEAKER suggesting that there was no proposition before the House, the petition was referred to the Committee of the Whole on the state of the Union, by the acquiescence of the Inovel'. Mr. HAYNES moved the reference of a petition to another committee; which was assented to.
Itesolved, That the Committee of Ways and Means be instructed to report a bill reducing the duty on bar iron, made by hammering, to the amount of duty imposed by the law of 1816. Also, to reduce the duty on cotton bagging to two cents per square yard. Also, to reduce the duty on coarse woollen goods, costing less than fifty cents per square yard at the place whence imported, to an ad valorem duty of twenty-five per cent. Also, to reduce the duty on coarse wool, costing less than ten cents per pound at the place whence imported, to an ad valorem duty of twenty per cent. Also, to reduce the duty on brown sugar to two cents per pound. Mr. CONDICT demanded the question of consideration on this resolution; and Mr. FINCH called for the yeas and nays on the question. They were ordered by the House, and, being taken, stood as follows: YEAS.--Messrs. Alexander, Allen, Alston, Anderson, Archer, Barbour, Barnwell, Barringer, Baylor, Bell, James Blair, Brodhead, Cambreleng, Campbell, Carson, Chandler, Claiborne, Clay, Coke, Conner, Craig, Crocheron, Davenport, Warren R. Davis, Desha, Ije Witt, Draper, Drayton, Dudley, Foster, Gaither, Gordon, Hall, Hammons, Haynes, Hinds, Holland, Jarvis, Jennings, Cave Johnson, Lamar, Lea, Lent, Lewis, Loyall, Lumpkin, McDuffic, McIntire, Nuckolls, Patton, Polk, Potter, Rencher, Roane, Wm. B. Shepard, Aug. H. Shepperd, Speight, Richard Spencer, Standefer, Taliaferro, Wiley Thompson, Tucker, Verplanck, Campbell P. White, Williams, Wilson.-- 66. NAYS.–Messrs. Angel, Armstrong, Arnold, Bailey, Barber, Bates, Beekman, John Blair, Bockee, Boon, Borst, Brown, Buchanan, Butman, Cahoon, Clark, Colcman, Condict, Cooper, Coulter, Cowles, Crane, Crawford, Crowninshield, Daniel, Denny, Dickinson, Doddridge, Duncan, Dwight, Eager, Earll, Ellsworth, George Evans, Joshua Evans, Horace Everett, Findlay, Finch, Ford, Fry, Gihmore, Gorham, Grennell, Gurley, Halsey, Harvey, Hawkins, Hemphill, Hodges, Hoffman, Howard, Hubbard, Hughes, Huntington, Ihric, Irwin, Irvin, R. M. Johnson, Kendall, Kennon, Kincaid, Perkins King, Adam King, Leavitt, Lecompte, Letcher, Lyon, Magee, Marr, Martindale, Thomas Maxwell, Lewis Maxwell, McCreery, Mercer, Miller, Mitchell, Monell, Muhlenberg, Overton, Pearce, Pettis, Pierson, Ramsey, Reed, Richardson, Rose, Russel, Sanford, Scott, Shields, Sill, Smith, Ambrose Spencer, Sprigg, Sterigere, Stephens, Storrs, Strong, Sutherland, Swann, Swift, Taylor, John Thomson, Tracy, Vance, Varnum, Vinton, Washington, Weeks, Whittlesey, E. D. White, Wickliffe, Yancey, Young.—114. So the House refused to consider the resolution,
WEDNEspa Y, DEcEM B ER 15.
This day was consumed in the reception and reference of petitions and resolutions of inquiry.
Thunso AY, DEcEM BER 16.
Mr. TRACY, on rising to present a petition, remarked, that the subject-matter of the petition which he was about to present, was one of great importance, not only to his own immediate constituents, but to the whole section of the country bordering on Lake Ontario.
It might be recollected, he said, that, at the last session of the present Congress, a law was passed, making an appropriation for the survey of the mouth of Oak Orchard creek, about middle distant between Niagara and Genesce rivers. This survey was carried into effect the last summer, by General Swift, an experienced engineer, whose report accompanied the petitions, by reference to which report it would appear that the benefits which would result from the improvement of the mouth of said
creek, for the purpose of a harbor, would exceed the most sanguine expectations of its projectors. Mr. T. remarked, that the formation of a harbor on the contemplated site was one of a strictly national character. That it would greatly enlarge the facilities of commerce on the Northern lakes, but, in case of war, would contribute to the common defence of the country, in a proportionate degree to those on the seacoast. Mr. T. concluded by saying that the section of the country bordering on the Northern lakes had never asked much aid from the General Government for the promotion of national objects, and that they had received but a small proportion of what they had asked; and he hoped this subject would receive from the appropriate committee, to whom it would be referred, all the attention which its importance required. The resolution yesterday submitted by Mr. BOON, of Indiana, was taken up, considered, and agreed to. The following resolution, yesterday submitted by Mr. WHITE, of Florida, was taken up: I'esolved, That the Secretary of the Navy be directed to communicate to this House copies of the correspondence of the superintendent, and reports of the overseer of the live oak plantations near the navy yard at Pensacola. Mr. SPEIGHT offered the following amendment: “And that he be further directed to communicate to this House copies of all correspondence, contracts, deeds, or other papers, connected with the purchase of live oak hands in Florida, in the possession of, or within the control of the Navy Department; the quantity purchased; the persons from whom the purchases were made; the prices given; to whom paid, when paid, and on what authority; together with all other information tending to show the value of such lands at the time of the purchase, as well as the quantity and value of the live oak timber on each tract, fit for naval purposes.” Mr. WHITE, of Florida, said he did not object to the amendment proposed by the gentleman from North Carolina, and would accept it as a modification of his resolution, although all the information called for by it had at the last session been communicated to Congress. The object he had in view was a simple one, and related to a subject of more importance than might at first be imagined. The Secretary of the Navy, in his report to the President, and by him communicated to Congress, holds the following language: “Further cfforts have been made for the execution of this act, as far as it relates to the preservation of the live oak growing on the coasts of the Atlantic and Gulf of Mexico. “By the fourth section of this act, the President is authorized to provide for the preservation of this timber; but it seems to have been intended that the power should be limited to that object. An interpretation of the law has heretofore been entertained, extending this power not only to the planting of the acorns, and the cultivation of plantations of young trees, but to the purchase from individuals of lands producing them. The paper accompanying this, marked D, shows the amount which has been expended on these plantations, and the sums which have been paid to individuals for the purchase of tracts of such land. “When it is considered that this timber is the natural product of the coast of the United States, from the St. Mary’s to the Sabine; that the greater part of this belongs to the United States, and is proposed to be retained with a view to preserving a supply of this important material for the navy, it can scarcely be necessary for the present to engage in its artificial propagation or culture. “Under an impression that this system is neither c>pedient, nor in conformity to the intentions of the act, an order has been given to discontinue the works after the expiration of the present year. “But the preservation of this timber is an object of
Dec. 16, 1830.]
great importance, and should be prosecuted with an active and undeviating purpose.” He has exhibited in this report the expenses of a public work recommended by his predecessor, upon the concurrence of the most experienced naval officers, and sanctioned by Congress, and has announced his determination to discontinue it at the end of this year. The expenses to which the Government have been subjected, are only disclosed by him. The extent, progress, and benefit of the work is not presented, and can only be understood by having copies of the papers called for in the resolution he had the honor to submit. To form a just idea of any public improvement, the advantages as well as expenses should be exhibited to those who are to decide whether the policy of the country requires its continuall CC. From a perusal of the report of the Secretary of the Navy, one would be led to believe that an unauthorized interpretation had been put by his predecessor upon the third (erroneously called fourth) section of the act for the gradual improvement of the navy. It had fallen to his lot to know something about this subject, which, as it has not been disclosed in the report, ought now to be stated here. The subject of forming plantations of live oak for the future supply of that valuable timber for the navy, was first introduced by a resolution in this House, on the 12th of January, 1827. By that resolution, the Committee on Naval Affairs were instructed to inquire into the expediency of forming plantations for rearing live oak for the future supply of the navy. It passed by an almost unanimous vote; and it was then distinctly announced that the timber was so rapidly disappearing, that, unless artificial propagation and culture were resorted to, there would not be a sufficient quantity in a few years for naval purposes. It never was conceived that the act for the gradual improvement of the navy conferred power to make purchases of land. No such “interpretation was ever entertained,” and no such power claimed or exercised. On the contrary, it was believed that the Executive had no such authority; and as it was considered that the public interests would be promoted by the purchase of a few individual claims, to complete a proposed reservation of the public land near a navy yard, a specific appropriation was made in the bill making appropriation for the navy in 1828, and will be found in the third section of that bill, as follows: “Be it further enacted, That there be, and is hereby, appropriated for the purchase of such lands as the President of the United States may think necessary and proper to provide live oak and other timber for the use of the navy of the United States, a sum not exceeding ten thousand dollars,” &c. This is the authority under which the purchases were made, and not the fourth section of the act for the gradual improvement of the navy. The object of this provision was distinctly explained in a communication to the Committee on Naval Affairs in the Senate and House of Representatives, and by them to the respective branches of Congress to which they belonged. It was proposed by the President to make a reservation of the peninsula formed by Pensacola bay and St. Rosa's sound, near to the navy yard, for the live oak then upon it, and to make an experiment of, or its further propagation by, artificial culture. The situation was perhaps the best in the United States. The promontory between these two bodies of salt water, from its peculiar position and almost insular form, presented advantages which were not offered on any other part of that coast. At the distance of eighteen or twenty miles up the sound, the waters approached within half a mile, which afforded an opportunity of keeping out, with little care and expense, the fires which are so destructive to the young trees.
There were within this boundary a few individual claims to be extinguished, to give the United States exclusives jurisdiction and possession of the land. The contiguity of this land, too, to the navy yard, rendered it accessible at all times to the officers, and subject to their superintendence. A plan was made at the General Land Office, the price to be paid stipulated, the situation well understood, and the intention of the Government made known, and, with a full knowledge of all these facts, Congress made the appropriation. This took place in that year, when a majority of both committees, and of both Houses of Congress, were opposed to the administration, so that there was no overstrained construction, no absurd and arbitrary interpretation, to make these purchases. If the attack is intended to be made upon the policy of the measure, it is impugning the decision of Congress. The Secretary has also stated that live oak is the “natural product” of the whole coast from St. Mary's to the Sabine. This is assumed as the ground for abandoning the policy adopted by Congress, and continued by this administration from the 4th of March, 1829, up to this time. I regret that I am under the necessity of differing from the Secretary so widely in this statement. If the honorable Secretary had referred to the respectable naval officers in the other end of the building, they would have told him, from information acquired from an intimate personal acquaintance with that coast, that the live oak is found sparsely scattered at most remote distances, and in small bodies. If artificial culture is not resorted to, and the fires kept out of the reservations, there will not be enough in fifty years to buld a West India squadron. As I have the honor to represent the territory in which this establishment is located, I desire to have the subject fairly placed before Congress, and let them decide whether the public interests will not be promoted by the continuance of the experiment. The reports will show that there are 70,000 live oak trees upon the land purchased, which, in half a century, or even a quarter, will be worth ten times the amount ever expended upon them. Mr. WHITE having accepted the amendment of Mr. SPEIGHT as a modification of his resolution, Mr. HOFFMAN moved further to amend it, by adding the following: “And all other information in the power of the department to give, relative to a production and providing a supply of live oak, and the measures taken respecting the growing thereof, and the expenses of such measures.” Mr. HOFFMAN, on offering this amendment, said, that the subject of this resolution was now before the Committee on Naval Affairs, in consequence of a reference to that committee of a part of the annual message of the President. His . ect in moving this amendment was to enlarge the proposed call, so as to embrace all the information on the subject which it was in the power of the department to communicate. He was not aware, he said, whether Congress had, or had not, in any way, sanctioned the policy of planting. He did not rise to express any opinion on that question at present, but only desired to have all the information which could be"prought to bear upon it. Mr. WHITE accepted the amendment. Mr. WICKLIFFE, of Kentucky, proposed an amendment, to include also an inquiry into the measures adopted for “the preservation” of the live oak timber. He wanted to get at information on this subject. He understood that there had been a corps of overseers employed about that business for the last and several preceding years. He wished to know, from authority, what they were about. Mr. WHITE accepted also this amendment. The resolution, as thus amended, was agreed to, mem. coro, Mr. RICHARDSON submitted the following: Resolved, That a select committee on education be ap