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Bank of the United States.
(FEB. 2, 1831.
phia. Foreigners become the landlords of free born | bank the operation is doubly good; for even the half of Americans; and the young and flourishing towns of the one per cent. on bills of exchange is a great profit to the United States are verging to the fate of the family boroughs institution which monopolizes that business, while the colwhich belong to the great aristocracy of England. lection and delivery to the branches of all the hard money
Let no one say the bank will not avail itself of its capa-in the country is a still more corsiderable advantage. Uncity to amass real estate. The fact is, it has already done der this system, the best of the Western banks--I do not
I know towns, yea, cities, and could name them, if speak of those which had no foundations, and sunk under it might not seem invidious from this elevated theatre to the weight of neighborhood opinion--but those which demake a public reference to their misfortunes, in which this served favor and confidence, sunk ten years ago. Under bank already appears as a dominant and engrossing pro- this system, the entire West is now undergoing a silent, prietor. I have been in places where the answers to in- general, and invisible drain of its hard money; and, if not quiries for the owners of the most valuable tenements, quickly arrested, these States will soon be, so far as the would remind you of the answers given by the Egyptians precious metals are concerned, no more than the empty to siinilar questions from the French officers, on their skin of an immolated victim. march to Cairo. You recollect, no doubt, sir, the dialogue 7. To establish branches in the different States without to which I allude: “Who owns that palace?' “ The Ma- their consent, and in defiance of their resistance.- No one meluke;" “Who this country house?" "The Mameluke;" can deny the degrading and injurious tendency of this pri“ These gardens?" "“ 'The Mameluke;" “That field cover- vilege. It derogates from the sovereignty of a State; tramed with rice?” “ The Mameluke.”-And thus have I been ples upon her laws; injures her revenue and commerce; answered, in the towns and cities referred to, with the lays open her Government to the attacks of centralis.m; imsingle exception of the name of the Bank of the United pairs the property of her citizens; and fastens a vampire States substituted for that of the military scourge of Egypt. on her bosom to suck out her gold and silver. 1. It If this is done under the first charter, what may not be ex- derogates from her sovereignty, because the central instipected under the second? If this is done while the bank tution may impose its intrusive branches upon the State is on its best behavior, what may she not do when freed without her consent, and in defiance of her resistance. from all restraint and delivered up to the boundless cupi- This has already been done. The State of Alabama, but dity and remorseles exactions of a moneyed corporation four years ago, by a resolve of her Legislature, remon
6. To deal in pawns, merchandise, and bills of ex. strated against the intrusion of a branch upon her. She change.--I hope the Senate will not require me to read protested against the favor. Was the will of the State resdry passages from the charter to prove what I say. I pected? On the contrary, was not a branch instantaneknow I speak a thing nearly incredible when I allege that ously forced upon her, as if, by the suddenness of the acthis bank, in addition to all its other attributes, is an in- tion, to make a striking and conspicuous display of the corporated company of pawnbrokers! The allegation omnipotence of the bank, and the nullity of the State? staggers belief, but a reference to the charter will dispel 2. It tramples upon her laws; because, according to incredulity. The charter, in the first part, forbids a traffic the decision of the Supreme Court, the bank and all its in merchandise; in the after part, permits it. For truly branches are wholly independent of State legislation; and this instrument seems to have been framed upon the it tramples on them again, because it authorizes foreigners principles of contraries; one principle making limitations, to hold lands and tenements in every State, contrary to the and the other following after with provisoes to undo them. laws of many of them; and because it admits of the morlThus is it with lands, as I have just shown; thus is it with main tenure, which is condemned by all the republican merchandise, as I now show. The bank is forbiden to deal States in the Union. 3. It injures her revenue, because in merchandise--proviso, unless in the case of goods pledg- the bank stock, under the decision of the Supreme Court, ed for money lent, and not redeemed to the day; and, is not liable to taxation. And thus, foreigners, and nonproviso, again, unless for goods which shall be the proceeds resident Americans, who monopolize the money of the of its lands. With the help of these two provisoes, it is state, who hold its best lands and town lots, who meddle clear that the limitation is undone; it is clear that the bank in its elections, and suck out its gold and silver, and peris at liberty to act the pawnbroker and merchant, to any form no military duty, are exempted from paying taxes, in extent that it pleases. It may say to all the merchants who proportion to their wealth, for the support of the State want loans, Pledge your stores, gentlemen! They must whose laws they trample upon, and whose benefits they do it, or do worse; and, if any accident prevents redemp- usurp. 4. It subjects the State to the dangerous mation on the day, the pawn is forfeited, and the bank takes næuvres and intrigues of centralism, by means of the possession. On the other hand, it may lay out its rents for tenants, debtors, bank officers, and bank money, which goods; it may sell its real estate, now worth three millions the central directory retain in the State, and may embody of dollars, for goods. Thus the bank is an incorporated and direct against it in its elections, and in its legislative company of pawnbrokers and merchants, as well as an and judicial proceedings, 5. It tends to impair the proincorporation of landlords and land-speculators; and perty of the citizens, and, in some instances, that of the this derogatory privilege, like the others, is copied from States, by destroying the State banks in which they bave the old Bank of England charter of 1694. Bills of ex- invested their money. 6. It is injurious to the commerce change are also subjected to the traffic of this bank. It is of the States, (I speak of the Western States,) by suba traffic unconnected with the trade of banking, dangerous stituting a trade in bills of exchange, for a trade in the for a great bank to hold, and now operating most injuri- products of the country. 7. It fastens a vampire on the ously in the South and West. It is the process which drains bosom of the State, to suck away its gold and silver, and these quarters of the Union of their gold and silver, and to co-operate with the course of trade, of federal legislastifles the growth of a fair commerce in the products of tion, and of exchange, in draining the South and West of the country. The merchants, to make remittances, buy all their hard money. The Southern States, with their bills of exchange from the branch banks, instead of buying thirty millions of annual exports in cotton, rice, and toproduce from the farmers. The bills are paid for in gold bacco, and the Western States, with their twelve millions and silver; and, eventually, the gold and silver are sent to of provisions and tobacco exported from New Orleans, the mother bank, or to the branches in the Eastern cities, and five inillions consumed in the South, and on the lower either to meet these bills, or to replenish their coffers, and Mississippi,--that is to say, with three-fifths of the marto furnish vast loans to favorite States or individuals. The ketable productions of the Union, are not able to sustain bills sell cheap, say a fraction of one per cent.; they are, thirty specie paying banks; while the minority of the therefore, a good remittance to the merchant. To the States north of the Potomac, without any of the great
Feb. 2, 1831.)
Bank of the United States,
staples for export, have above four hundred of such partnership; the immense standing deposites for which banks. These states, without rice, without colton, with-we receive no compensation; the loan of five millions of out tobacco, without sugar, and with less flour and pro- our own money, for which we have paid a million and a visions, to export, are saturated with gold and silver, half in interest; the five per cent, stock note, on which while the Southern and Western States, with all the real we have paid our partners four million seven hundred and sources of wealth, are in a state of the utmost destitution. twenty-five thousand dollars in interest; the loss of ten For this calamitous reversal of the natural order of things, millions on the three per cent. stock, and the ridicuthe Bank of the United States stands forth pre-eminently lous catastrophe of the miserable bonus, which has been culpable. Yes, it is pre-eminently culpable! and a state- paid to us with a fraction of our own money: I pass ment in the National Intelligencer of this morning, (a over all this, and come to the point of a direct loss, as a paper which would overstate no fact to the prejudice of partner, in the dividends upon the stock itself. Upon this the bank,) cites and proclaims the fact which proves this naked point of profit and loss, to be decided by a rule in culpability. It dwells, and exults, on the quantity of arithmetic, we have sustained a direct and heavy loss. The gold and silver in the vaults of the United States' Bank. stock held by the United States, as every body knows, It declares that institution to be “overburdened" with gold was subscribed, not paid. It was a stock note, deposited and silver; and well may it be so overburthened, since it for seven millions of dollars, bearing an interest of five bas lifted the load entirely from the South and West. It per cent. The inducement to this subscription was the calls these metals "a drug.” in the hands of the bank; that seductive conception that, by paying five per cent. on its is to say, an article for which no purchaser can be found. note, the United States would clear four or five per cent. Let this “drug,” like the treasures of the dethroned Dey in getting a dividend of eight or ten. This was the inof Algiers, be released from the clominion of its keeper; ducement; now for the realization of this fine conception. let a part go back to the South and West, and the bank will Let us see it. Here it is: an official return from the Reno longer complain of repletion, nor they of depletion. gister of the Treasury of interest paid, and of dividends
8. Exemption of the stockholders from individual lia-received. The account stands thus: bility on the failure of the bank. This privilege dero- Interest paid by the United States,
$4,725,000 gates from the common law, is contrary to the principle Dividends received by the United States, 4,629,426 of partnerships, and injurious to the rights of the community. It is a peculiar privilege granted by law to these Loss to the United States,
95,574 corporators, and exempting them from liability, except in Disadvantageous as this partnership must be to the their corporate capacity, and to the amount of the assets United States in a moneyed point of view, there is a far of the corporation. Unhappily, these assets are never more grave and serious aspect under which to view it. assez, that is to say, enough, when occasion comes for re. It is the political aspect, resulting from the union between curring to them. When a bank fails, its assets are always the bank and the Government. This union has been tried less than its debits; so that responsibility fails the instant in England, and has been found there to be just as disasthat liability accrues. Let no one say that the Bank of trous à conjunction as the union of church and State. It the United States is too great to fail. One greater than is the conjunction of the lender and the borrower, and it, and its prototype, has failed, and that in our own day, holy writ" has told us which of these categories will be and for twenty years at a time: the Bank of England master of the other. But suppose they agree to drop failed in 1797, and the Bank of the United States was on rivalry, and unite their resources, Suppose they comthe point of failing in 1819. The same cause, namely, bine, and make a push for political power: how great is stockjobbing and overtraling, carried both to the brink the mischief which they may not accomplish! But, on of destruction; the same means saved both, namely, the this head, I wish to use the language of one of the brightname, the credit, and the helping hand of the Govern- est patriots of Great Britain; one who has shown himself, ments which protected them. Yes, the Bank of the in these modern days, to be the worthy successor of those United States may fail; and its stockholders live in splen- old iron barons whose patriotism commanded the unpurdor upon the princely estates acquired with its notes, chaseable eulogium of the elder Pitt. I speak of Sir while the industrious classes, who hold these notes, will William Pulteney, and his speech against the Bank of Engbe unable to receive a shilling for thein. This is unjust. land, in 1797. It is a vice in the charter, The true principle in banking THE SPEECH--Extract.--"I have said enough to show requires each stockholder to be liable to the amount of that Government has been rendered dependent on the his shares; and subjects him to the summary action of bank, and more particularly so in the time of war; and every holder on the failure of the institution, till he has though the bank has not yet fallen into the hands of ampaid up the amount of his subscription. This is the true bitious men, yet it is evident that it might, in such hands, principle. It has prevailed in Scotland for the last cen- assume a power sufficient to control and overawe, not only tury, and no such thing as a broken bank has been known the ministers, but king, lords, and commons. there in all that time.
As the bank has thus become dangerous to Government, 9. To have the United States for a partner. Sir, there it might, on the other hand, by uniting with an ambitious is one consequence, one result of all partnerships be- minister, become the means of establishing a fourth estween a Government and individuals, which should of it- tate, sufficient to involve this nation in irretrievable slavery, self, and in a mere mercantile point of view, condemn this and ought, therefore, to be dreaded as much as a certain association on the part of the Federal Government. It is East India bill was justly dreaded, at a period not very the principle which puts the strong partner forward to remote. I will not say that the present minister, (the bear the burthen whenever the concern is in danger. The younger Pitt,) by endeavoring, at this crisis, to take the weaker members flock to the strong partner at the ap- Bank of England under his protection, can have any view proach of the storm, and the necessity of venturing more to make use, hereafter, of that engine to perpetuate his to save what he has already staked, leaves him no alterna- own power, and to enable him to domineer over our contive. He becomes the Atlas of the firm, and bears all stitution: if that could be supposed, it would only show upon his own shoulders. This is the principle: what is that men can entertain a very different train of ideas, the fact? Why, that the United States has already been when endeavoring to overset a rival, from what occurs to compelled to sustain the federal bank; to prop it with them when intending to support and fix themselves. My her revenues and its credit in the trials and crisis of its object is to secure the country against all risk either from early administration. I pass over other instances of the the bank as opposed to Government, or as the engine of damage suffered by the United States on account of this ambitious men.
(Feb. 2, 1831. And this is my object also. I wish to secure the Union sponsible system of centralism to direct the whole! Danfrom all chance of harm from this bank. I wish to pro- gers from such contingencies are too great and obvious to vide against its friendship, as well as its enmity--against be insisted upon. They strike the common sense of all all danger from its hug, as well as from its blow. I wish mankind, and were powerful considerations for the old to provide against all risk, and every hazard; for, if this whig republicans for the non-renewal of the charter of risk and hazard were too great to be encountered by King, 1791. Mr. Jefferson and the whig republicans staked Lords, and Commons, in Great Britain, they must certainly their political existence on the non-renewal of that charter. be too great to be encountered by the people of the They succeeded; and, by succeeding, prevented the counUnited States, who are but commons alone.
try from being laid at the mercy of British and ultra-fede10. To have foreigners for partners.--This, Mr. Presi- ralists for funds to carry on the last war. It is said the dent, will be a strange story to be told in the West. The United States lost forty millions by using depreciated curdownright and upright people of that unsophisticated rency during the last war. That, probably, is a mistake region believe that words mean what they signify, and of one-half. But be it so! For what are forty millions that “the Bank of the United States" is the Bank of the compared to the loss of the war itself--compared to the United States. How great then must be their astonish- ruin and infamy of having the Government arrested for ment to learn that this belief is a false conception, and that want of money--stopped and paralyzed by the reception this bank (its whole name to the contrary notwithstand- of such a note as the younger Pitt received from the Bank ing,) is just as much the bank of foreigners as it is of the of England in 1795? Federal Government. Here I would like to have the 11. Exemption from due course of law for violations of proof--a list of the names and nations, to establish this its charter.---This is a privilege which affects the adminisalmost incredible fact. But I have no access except to tration of justice, and stands without example in the annals public documents, and from one of these I learn as much of republican legislation. In the case of all other delinas will answer the present pinch. It is the report of the quents, whether persons or corporations, the laws take Committee of Ways and Means, in the House of Repre- their course against those who offend them. It is the sentatives, for the last session of Congress. That report right of every citizen to set the laws in motion against every admits that foreigners own seven millions of the stock of offender; and it is the constitution of the law, when set in this bank; and every body knows that the Federal Govern- motion, to work through, like a machine, regardless of ment owns seven millions also.
powers and principalities, and cutting down the guilty Thus it is proved that foreigners are as deeply interested which may stand in its way. Not so in the case of this in this bank as the United States itself. In the event of a bank. In its behalf, there are barriers erected between renewal of the charter they will be much more deeply the citizen and his oppressor, between the wrong and the interested than at present; for a prospect of a rise in the remedy, between the law and the offender. Instead of a stock to two hundred and fifty, and the unsettled state of right to sue out a scire facias or a quo warranto, the injured things in Europe, will induce them to make great invest- citizen, with an humble petition in his band, must repair ments. It is to no purpose to say that the foreign stock to the President of the United States, or to Congress, and holders cannot be voters or directors. The answer to crave their leave to do so. If leave is denied, (and denica that suggestion is this: the foreigners have the money; it will be whenever the bank has a peculiar friend in the they pay down the cash, and want no accommodations; President, or a majority of such friends in Congress, the they are lenders, not borrowers; and in a great moneyed convenient pretext being always at hand that the general institution such stockholders must have the greatest in- welfare requires the bank to be sustained,) he can proceed fluence. The name of this bank is a deception upon no further. The machinery of the law cannot be set in the public. It is not the bank of the Federal Govern- motion, and the great offender laughs from behind his barment, as its name would import, nor of the States rier at the impotent resentment of its helpless victim. which compose this Union; but chiefly of private in. Thus the bank, for the plainest violations of its charter, dividuals, foreigners as well as natives, denizens, and and the greatest oppressions of the citizen, nay escape the naturalized subjects. They own twenty-eight millions of pursuit of justice. Thus the administration of justice is the stock, the Federal Government but seven millions, subject to be strangled in its birth for the shelter and proand these seven are precisely balanced by the stock of tection of this bank. But this is not ali. Another and the aliens. The Federal Government and the aliens most alarming mischief results from the same extraordinary are equal, owning one-fifth each; and there would be as privilege. It gives the bank a direct interest in the Premuch truth in calling it the English Bank as the Bank of sidential and Congressional elections: it gives it need for the United States. Now mark a few of the privileges friends in Congress and in the Presidential chair. Its fate, which this charter gives to these foreigners. To be land- its very existence, may often depend upon the friendship holders, in defiance of the State laws, which forbid aliens of the President and Congress; and, in such cases, it is not to hold land; to be landlords by incorporation, and to hold in human nature to avoid using the immense mcans in the American citizens for tenants; to hold lands in mortman; hands of the bank to influence the elections of these offi. to be pawnbrokers and merchants by incorporation; to cers. Take the existing fact--the case to which I alluded pay the revenue of the United States in their own notes; at the commencement of this speech. There is a case In short, to do every thing which I have endeavored to made out, ripe with judicial evidence, and big with the fute point out in the long and hideous list of exclusive privileges of the bank. It is a case of usury at the rate of forty-six granted to this bank. If I have shown it to be dangerous per cent.,
in violation of the charter, which only admits an for the United States to be in partnership with its own interest of six. The facts were admitted, in the court hecitizens, how much stronger is not the argument against a low, by the bank's demurrer; the law was decided, in the partnership with foreigners? What a prospect for loans court above, by the supreme judges. The admission conwhen at war with a foreign Power, and the subjects of that cludes the facts; the decision concludes the law. The forPower large owners of the bank here, from which alone, feiture of the charter is established; the forfeiture is inor from banks liable to be destroyed by it, we can obtain curred; the application of the forfeiture alone is wanting money to carry on the war! What a state of things, if, in to put an end to the institution. An impartial President the division of political parties, one of these parties and for Congress might let the laws take their course; those of the foreigners, coalescing, should have the exclusive con- a different temper might interpose their veto.
What a trol of all the money in the Union, and, in addition to the crisis for the bank! It beholds the sword of Damocles money, should have boclies of debtors, tenants, and bank suspended over its licad! What an interest in keeping officers stationed in all the States, with a supreme and irre-Ithose away who might suffer the hair to be cut!
FEB. 2, 1831.]
Bank of the United States.
12. To have all these unjust privileges secured to the approved principles of baiting. The Bank of Engcorporators as a monopoly, by a pledge of the public faith land may, perhaps, propose, as they did upon a former to charter no other bank.-- This is the most hideous fea- occasion, the extension of the term of their exclusive priture in the whole mass of deformity. If these banks are vilege, as to the metropolis and its neighborhood, beyond beneficial institutions, why not several? one, at least, and the year 1833, as the price of this concession, (immediate each independent of the other, to each great section of the surrender of exclusive privileges.] It would be very much Union? if malignant, why create one? The restriction to be regretted that they should require any such condiconstitutes the monopoly, and renders more invidious what tion. It is obvious, from what passed before, that was sufficiently hateful in itself. It is, indeed, a double Parliament will never agree to it. Such privileges monopoly, legislative as well as banking; for the Congress are out of fashion; and what expectation can the bank, of 18 16 monopolized the power to grant these monopolies. under present circumstances, entertain that theirs will be It has tied up the hands of its successors; and if this can renewed?" --Jan. 13. be done on one subject, and for twenty years, why not Answer of the Court of Directors. ---Extract. upon all subjects, and for all time? Here is the form of
“Under the uncertainty in which the Court of Directors words which operate this double engrossment of our rights: find themselves with respect to the death of the bank, and “No other bank shall be established by any future law of the effect which they may have on the interests of the Congress during the continuance of the corporation hereby bank, this court cannot feel themselves justified in recomcnacted, for which the faith of Congress is hereby pledg- mending to the proprietors to give up the privilege which ed;" with a proviso for the District of Columbia. And they now enjoy, sanctioned and confirmed as it is by the that no incident might be wanting to complete the title of solemn acts of the Legislature.”—Jan. 20. this charter, to the utter reprobation of whig republicans, this compound monopoly, and the very form of words in
Second communication from the Ministers.--Extract. which it is conceived, is copied from the charter of the Exchequer have considered the answer of the bank of the
“ The First Lord of the Treasury and Chancellor of the Bank of England!--not the charter of William and Mary, 20th instant. They cannot but regret that the Court of as granted in 1694, (for the Bill of Rights was then fresh Directors should have declined to recommend to the Court in the memories of Englishmen,) but the charter as amend of Proprietors the consideration of the paper delivered by eil, and that for money, in the memorable reign of Queen the First Lord of the Treasury and the Chancellor of the Anne, when a tory Queen, a tory Ministry, and a tory Par- Exchequer to the Governor and Deputy Governor on the liament, and the apostle of toryism, in the person of Dr. 13th instant. The statement contained in that paper ap. Sacheverell, with his sermons of divine right, passive obedience, and non-resistance, were riding and ruling over of the Exchequer so full and explicit on all the points to
pears to the First Lord of the Treasury and the Chancellor the prostrate liberties of England! This is the precious which it related, that they have nothing further to add, period, and these the noble authors, from which the idea Was borrowed, and the very form of words copied, which although they would have been, and still are, ready to an. now figure in the charter of the Bank of the United States, be put, for the purpose of removing the uncertainty in constituting that double monopoly, which restricts at once which the Court of Directors state themselves to be with the powers of Congress and the rights of the citizens.
These, Mr: President, are the chief of the exclusive respect to the details of the plan suggested in that paper.” privileges which constitute the monopoly of the Bank of the United States. I have spoken of them, not as they de
Second answer of the Bank.--Extract. served, but as my abilities have permitted. I have shown
“The Committee of Treasury (bank] having taken into you that they are not only evil in themselves, but copied consideration the paper received from the First Lord of from an evil example. I now wish to show you that the the Treasury and the Chancellor of the Exchequer, dated Government from which we have made this copy has con- January 23d, and finding that His Majesty's ministers perdemned the original; and, after showing this fact, I think severe in their desire to propose to restric: immediately I shall be able to appeal, with sensible effect, to all liberal the exclusive privilege of the bank, as to the number of minds, to follow the enlightened example of Great Britain partners engaged in banking to a certain distance from the in getting rid of a dangerous and invidious institution, after metropolis, and also continue to be of opinion that Parliahaving followed her pernicious example in assuming it. ment would not consent to renew the privilege at the exFor this purpose, I will have recourse to proof, and will piration of the period of their present charter; finding, read from British state papers of 1826. I will read ex- also, that the proposal by the bank of establishing branch tracts from the correspondence between Earl Liverpool, banks is deemed by His Majesty's ministers inadequate to first Lord of the Treasury, and Mr. Robinson, Chancellor the wants of the country, are of opinion that it would be of the Exchequer, on one side, and the Governor and desirable for this corporation to propose, as a basis, the Deputy Governor of the Bank of England on the other; act of 6th of George the Fourth, which states the condithe subject being the renewal, or rather non-renewal, oftions on which the Bank of Ireland relinquished its excluthe charter of the Bank of England.
sive privileges; this corporation waiving the question of a
prolongation of time, although the committee [of the Communications from the First Lord of the Treasury and bank] cannot agree in the opinion of the First Lord of the
Chancellor of the Exchequer to the Governor and Deputy Treasury and the Chancellor of the Exchequer, that they Governor of the Bank of England.--Extracts.
are not making a considerable sacrifice, adverting espe“The failures which have occurred in England, unac- cially to the Bank of Ireland remaining in possession of companied as they have been by the same occurrences in that privilege five years longer than the Bank of England.” Scotland, tend to prove that there must have been an un- --Jan. 25. solid and delusive system of banking in one part of Great Here, Mr. President, is the end of all the exclusive priBritain, and a solid and substantial one in the other. vileges and odious monopoly of the Bank of England. In Scotland, there are not more than thirty banks, (three That ancient and powerful institution, so long the haughty chartered,) and these banks have stood firm amidst all the tyrant of the moneyed world--so long the subsidizer of convulsions in the money market in England, and amidst Kings and ministers—so long the fruitful mother of national all the distresses to which the manufacturing and agricul-debt and useless wars—so long the prolific manufactory of tural interests in Scotland, as well as in England, have oc- nabobs and paupers—so long the dread dictator of its casionally been subject. Banks of this description must ne- own terms to Parliament-now droops the conquered cessarily be conducted upon the generally understood and wing, lowers its proud crest, and quails under the blows
Bank of the United States.
[FEB. 2, 1831.
of its late despised assailants. · It first puts on a coura- in the Bank of the United States, the unjust and odious geous air, and takes a stand upon privileges sanctioned privileges which they can no longer find in the Bank of by time, and confirmed by solemn acts. Seeing that the Egland? Shall the copy survive here after the original ministers could have no more to say to men who would has been destroyed there? Shall the young whelp triumph talk of privileges in the nineteenth century, and be in America, after the old lion has been throttled and ing reminded that Parliament was inexorable, the bully strangled in England? No! never! The thing is impossisuddenly degenerates into the craven, and, from showing ble! The Bank of the United States dies, as the Bank of fight, calls for quarter. The directors condescend to beg England dies, in all its odious points, upon the limitation for the smallest remnant of their former power, for five of its charter; and the only circumstance of regret is, that years only; for the city of London even; and offer to send the generous deliverance is to take effect two years earbranches into all quarters. Denied at every point, the lier in the British monarchy than in the American republic. subdued tyrant acquiesces in his fate, announces his sub One word, Mr. President, upon an incidental topic. It mission to the spirit and intelligence of the age; and quiet. is shown that the stock of the Bank of the United States ly sinks down into the humble, but safe and useful, condi- has fallen five per cent. in consequence of the cpinions tion of a Scottish provincial bank.
disclosed in the President's messages; and, thereupon, a And here it is profitable to pause; to look back, and sce complaint is preferred against the President for depreciatby what means this ancient and powerful institution--this ing the property of innocent and unoffending people. I Babylon of the banking world— was so suddenly and so to- made a remark upon this complaint in the beginning of tally prostrated. Who did it? And with what weapons? my speech, and now have a word more to bestow upon it. Sir, it was done by that power which is now regulating I wish to contrast this conduct of the American stockthe affairs of the civilized world. It was done by the holders with that of the Bank of England stockholders, power of public opinion, invoked by the working mem- in a similar, and to them, much more disastrous, case. bers of the British Parliament. It was done by Sir Henry The Bank of England stockholders also, have had a deParnell, who led the attack upon the Wellington ministry cline in the price of stock; not of five dollars, but of thiron the night of the 15th of November; by Sir William ty-five pounds, in the share. Bank of England stock, in Pulteney, Mr. Grenfell, Mr. Hume, Mr. Edward Ellice, consequence of Earl Liverpool's communication, and of and others, the working members of the House of Com- the debates in Parliament, has fallen from 238 to 203; mons, such as had, a few years before, overthrown the gi- equal to a loss of $165 in every share. This is something gantic oppressions of the salt tax. These are the men more than $5. Yet I have never heard that Earl Liverwho have overthrown the Bank of England. They began pool, or any member of Parliament, has been called to the attack in 1824, under the discouraging cry of too soon, account for producing this depreciation. It would seem too soon--for the charter had then nine years to run! arid that the liberty of speech, and the rights of discussion, in ended with showing that they had began just soon enough. Great Britain, extended to the affairs of the Bank of EngThey began with the ministers in their front, on the side land; and that ministers and legislators were safe in handof the bank, and ended with having them on their own ling it like any other subject. side, and making them co-operators in the attack, and the Fourthly. i object, Mr. President, to the renewal of instruments and inflicters of the fatal and final blow. But the bank charter, because this bank is an institution too let us do justice to these ministers. Though wrong in the costly and expensive for the American people to keep up. beginning, they were right in the end; though monarch Let no one cavil at this head of objection, under the beists, they behaved like republicans. They were not Po- lief that the Bank of the United States supports itself, like lignacs. They yielded to the intelligence of the age; they the hibernal bear, by sucking its own paws; or that it derives yielded to the spirit which proscribes monopolies and pri- its revenues, as a spider spins its web, from the recesses vileges, and in their correspondence with the bank direc- of its own abdomen. Such a belief would be essentially tors, spoke truth and reason, and asserted liberal princi- erroneous, and highly unbecoming the intelligence of the ples, with a point and power which quickly put an end to nineteenth century. The fact is, that the bank lives upon dangerous and obsolete pretensions. They told the bank the people! that all its expenses are made out of the peothe mortifying truths, that its system was unsolid and de- ple; all its profits derived from, and all its losses re-imburslusive--that its privileges and monopoly were out of ed by, them. This is the naked truth; by consequence fashion---that they could not be prolonged for five years every shilling held, or issued, by the bank, over and above even--por suffered to exist in London alone; and, what the capital stock, is a tax upon the people; and, as such, was still more cutting, that the banks of Scotland, which I shall look into the amount of the levy, and prove it to be had no monopoly, 110 privilege, no connexion with the too great for the people to bear any longer. Government, which paid interest on deposites, and whose in the first place, we have the direct expenses of the stockholders were responsible to the amount of their bank, the actual cost of its annual administration. These shares--were the solid and substantial banks, which alone expenses are returned at $372,000 for the year 1830; and, the public interest could hereafter recognise. They did assuming that sum for an average, the total cost of the their business, when they undertook it, like true men; and, administration for twenty years will be about seven and 2 in the single phrase, out of fashion, achieved the most pow- half millions of dollars. The enormity of this stun must erful combination of solid argument, and contemptuous strike every mind; but, to judge it accurately, let us comscarcasm, that ever was compressert into two words. It pare it to the expenses of some known establishment. Let is a phrase of electrical power over the senses and pas- us take the civil list of the Federal Government in the sions. It throws back the mind to the reigns of the Tu- first term of President Washington's administration. Redors and Stuarts—the termagant Elizabeth and the peda- sorting to this standard, I find the expenditure of this gogue James--and rouses within us all the shame and rage branch of the Government to be: for 1792, $381,000; for we have been accustomed to feel at the view of the scan-'93, $558,000; for '94, $441,000; for '95, $361,000; predalous sales of privileges and monopolies which were the senting an annnal average of $385,000; which is but a tridisgrace and oppression of these wretched times. Out of file over the bank expenditure for 1830. Now, what were fashion! Yes; even in England, the land of their early the heads of expenditure included in the civil list at the peri, birth, and late protection. And shall they remain in od referred to. They were the salaries of the President and fashion here? Shall republicanism continue to wear, in Vice President; the salaries of all the Secretaries, their clerks America, the antique costume which the doughty cham- and messengers, and the purchase of the paraphernalia of pions of antiquated fashion have been compelled to doff' in all their oflices; compensation to both Houses of Congress, England? Shall Englislı lords and ladies continue to find, and the discharge of every attendant expense; salaries to