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And now it also appears that Hill and Barton, (printers of the New Hampshire Patriot,) were allowed, during the same period when True and Greene were employed, $7,543 26 “for blanks, paper, and twine,” of which $4,238 83 was for printing blanks, though the sums appearing in the Blue Book, as paid to them, amount only to $2,494 36. Horatio Hill also had mail contracts for which he received 6,272 dollars, with “newspaper privilege,” as we have seen, though the Blue Book does not notice the fact in the list of printers; and Hill and Abbott appear also on the list of mail contractors, both for Maine and New Hampshire, with Hill and Morse, T. S. Abbott and Co., Hill and Crane, and Bibbitt and Hill. During the same period, Shadrach Penn, who is the printer and proprietor of the Louisville Public Advertiser, was employed to furnish blanks, paper, and twine, to the amount of $9,566.36, although in the Blue Book his name appears on the list of printers, as in any way employed by the Department, only for the sum of $2,297 91. Other sums were paid within the same period to other persons, for “paper and twine,” amounting to $24,562 61. The sums allowed during these two years, as appears by the vouchers and accounts for printed blanks, paper, and twine, (not including the large sums paid to other editors for printing “mail proposals,”) amount to more than seventy thousand dollars. The account now exhibited by the Department shows that Francis P. Blair, editor of the Globe, received, from the 30th of December, 1831, to the 26th of October, 1833, inclusive, the sum of $21,634 90. He appears in the Blue Book for only $14,371 57. But as the Department, on the application of the committee, sent us only a part of the vouchers for this account, and deferred sending the rest until it is now too late to examine them in time for this report, we cannot say how far the official statement in the register is correct or incorrect. The rates at which this printer is employed are enormous, and, in our opinion, are not to be justified by reference to any thing which has occurred in the past history of this Department. We here with submit a specimen of the rates paid him for advertising; and accompanying, the same is a statement of the rates and sums allowed for printing advertisements in July, 1830. The sum allowed for printing these advertisements is, it will be seen, about four times the amount then paid for them. (See the statements marked X.) During the interesting period between the 1st of July and the 30th of December, 1832, the “incidental expenses” were $22,958 07. , Within that time $13,673 31 was paid for printing to the editors and printers of newspapers, besides $5,166 15 for other articles by them sup. plied. Of the sum so paid to printers, Francis P. Blair received $8,386 50 “for printing proposals for carrying the mail from the 20th of July, 1832, to the 11th Octo. ber, 1832,” a period of two months and twenty-two days. The period immediately preceding the presidential elec. tion was the time selected for paying from this Department to this single editor about one hundred and sixteen dollars for every day his paper issued from the press. At the same time “the mail proposals” appeared not only in the city prints, and others having extensive circulation in different parts of the country, but in the most obscure country papers, some of which, having consumed the aliment they fed on, have since perished for the want of it. we present a few examples, and inquire for what possible purpose, except that of supporting a party press, while an excited political canvass was proceeding in the State of New York, were the following expenditures made? 1832. Mack and Andrews, for publishing proposals for carrying the United
States mail in N. York, Oct. 31, 1832 - $365 25
It will be seen, by reference to the account now furnished by the Department, that while the Globe weekly, semi-weekly, and daily, was publishing these very “mail proposals” for the whole Union; and while the Albany Argus and the Courier and Enquirer were publishing the same for the State of New York, and transmitting them to every part of the State from which a bid could be expected, these four papers, some of them scarcely circulating through a single county, in the interior, and published two or three times a week, were kept up at an expense of $1,636 35 for two months’ printing of the mail proposals for the whole State. For these and other similar expenditures, now brought to light by the document annexed, we can perceive no precedents in the former history of the Department. The year 1832 was also distinguished by the amount of expenses incurred for the services of sundry agents and secret emissaries who were put in motion at an expense of nearly ten thousand dollars for that year. These trips of investigation do not all appear on the face of the account. The sum of $6,005 is credited for sums paid to S. Gouverneur, the postmaster at New York. From an endorsement on one of the vouchers to support this charge, it appears that he has received credit on the books of the Department for that amount, by him paid, for the incidental expenses of his office, from which we infer that, by the direction of the Department, he made these payments, and was allowed them on settlement for postages. Mr. Gouverneur is not responsible for these payments ordered by the Department. Among the re. ceipts is one of P. S. Loughborough, travelling agent, for one hundred dollars paid him the 4th day of June, 1832; and seven of Barnabas Bates, another traveller, for $1,253 cash, paid him as “special agent,” between the 1st of August and the 12th of December, 1832, incluSive, Mr. Barnabas Bates, in October, 1833, presented an account, of which the following is a literal copy: “General Post Office,
“To B. Bates, Special Agent, Dr. “1833. April 30. To services from July 1, 1832, to date, 304 days, at $3 per diem, - - $912 00 Do do expenses during the same, $250 760 00 Do do steamboat and stage fare, do 184 00 $1,856 00
So that Mr. Barnabas Bates set a good price on his travels, and although, by an endorsement, it appears that Mr. C. K. Gardner, the first Assistant Postmaster Generol, doubted about the allowance of 50 cents of the $2 50 per diem for “expenses,” in addition to the “per diem for services,” and the “steamboat and stage fare;” yet, on putting the question endorsed on the voucher—“shall the additional fifty cents be allowed under the circumstances?” the Postmaster General underwrites—“allowed;” and on the 15th of October, 1833, Mr. Bates gives a receipt for a credit allowed him on account for the whole amount of 1,856 dollars. The most curious part of this matter, however, is, that the Department has direct.
ed Mr. Gouverneur to pay these agents for travelling, as it appears they did, as “special agents,” in New York and New England, and then covered and concealed the charge under the name of “incidental expenses of the Post Office at the city of New York.” By the returns for the first quarter of 1833, it also appears that P. S. Loughborough, who receives an annual salary from the Treasury of the United States of sixteen hundred dollars as “general agent” of the Post Office Department, was paid in addition thereto the sum of $2,467 66 as “special agent,” for expenses in travelling in Virginia, New York, and the Western States, per order of the Postmaster General, from 1st November, 1831, to 31st December, 1832, making the whole sum paid that officer during that period $4,067 66. During the same period, it will be seen from the account that other agents received $4,099 40, which, with the payment to Bates, made by Gouverneur, make $9,510 66 for travelling agents in about one year. It is in evidence before the committee by O. B. Brown, that Mr. Loughborough started on another trip of investigation about four weeks ago. Finally, the incidental expenses from the 1st of July, 1829, to the 1st of July, 1834, by the returns made for the first four years, and the Postmaster General’s estimates for the last, amount to the sum of $357,579 04: thus exceeding the incidental expenses of the five years previous to the 1st of January, 1829, by the sum of one hundred and sixty thousand five hundred and forty-one dollars. The necessity for legal restraint in this matter, we think too apparent to require further comment; and we now dismiss this part of the subject. On the whole, your committee have found the affairs of the Department in a state of utter derangement, resulting, as it is believed, from the uncontrolled discretion exercised by its officers over its contracts and its funds; and their habitual evasion, and in some instances, their total disregard of the laws which have been provided for their restraint. And your committee see no means within the power of Congress of extricating it from its present condition, and restoring it to healthy and efficient action, without providing by law a more strict system for its government; prescribing to its officers more special rules for the performance of their several duties; taking from them, as far as possible, all discretion, where the acceptance of a contract or the disbursement of money is concerned; establishing a more strict system of accountability, and enforcing an observance of the laws by penal enactment. Should Congress advance out of the treasury for the support of the Department, the sum of money asked for by the Postmaster General, or even the whole amount of its debts, it is not probable, while under the management of its present officers, with no other means than now exist to control and restrain them, that its debts would be liquidated, or its efficiency restored. Under this impression and belief, your committee cannot recommend the appropriation of any money to relieve the wants of the Department until there be some further guarantee for its proper and judicious application. Your committee, reserving the right to make a further report on these subjects hereafter, respectfully recommend the adoption of the following resolutions: 1. Resolved, That it is proved and admitted that large sums of money have been borrowed at different banks by the Postmaster General, in order to make up the deficiency in the means of carrying on the business of the Post Office Department, without authority given by any law of Congress; and that, ts. Congress alone, possesses the power to borrow money on the credit of the United states, all such contracts for loans by the Postmaster General, are illegal and void. 2. Resolved, That several reports of the Postmaster General contain statements which, in subsequent papers,
he admits to be erroneous; that others, especially those of the 18th of April, 1832, and the 3d of March, 1834, are inconsistent with each other; and that reliance cannot be placed on the truth and accuracy of the communications made by the Department. 3. Resolved, That it is fully proved, that a practice prevails in the Post Office Department, of granting contracts on bids which vary from the advertisement, and of changing and altering contracts in material respects after they have been accepted; and that this practice prevents all fair competition among persons wishing to make contracts, is calculated to give undue advantage to favorites, and is in violation of law. 4. Resolved, That it appears that an individual, who made a contract for the transportation of the mail, was required to give it up for no other reason than that it might be given to another desirous of having it; and that the act of the Department in requiring such surrender, and in effecting the transfer, was illegal and unjust. 5. Resolved, That it appears that proposals for carrying the mail on the route from Chicago to Green Bay, were withheld from advertisement; that the contract therefor was given in another's name, but really to one of the clerks in the Department; that the compensation propo-sed in the bid was raised without any increase of service, and the transaction is a direct breach of law. 6. Resolved, That extra allowances have been granted to contractors, without any increase of duty or service on their part; and that, in other cases, extra allowances have been made which are unreasonable, extravagant, and out of all proportion with the increase of service. 7. Resolved, That the Postmaster General has established steamboat lines for the transportation of the mail by private contract at an enormous expense, and without authority of law. 8. Itesolved, That the public credit has been pledged for the benefit of individual contractors; and that con. tractors have been solicited and induced to aid with their personal credit the business of the Department; and that all such transactions are unjustifiable and improper. 9. Resolved, That it does appear that mail lines have been established to run more frequently than once a day, and at a very heavy expense, when no adequate public object required such provision. 10. Resolved, That pecuniary transactions of a very irregular nature, are proved to have taken place between the contractors and some of the chief officers of the Post Office Department. 11. Resolved, That the Post Office Department is now deeply in debt; its affairs in disorder; its accounts and reports irregular and unsatisfactory; that it is justly the subject of public complaint, and demands a radical reform. 12. Resolved, That the incidental expenses and secretservice money of the Department have increased, are increasing, and ought to be diminished. 13. Resolved, That it does appear that an agreement was entered into between two companies of mail contractors, the express object of which was to put down all opposition lines of coaches, and all competition in-the transportation of -passengers on their respective mail routes; that said agreement was drawn by an officer of the Department, and entered into at his pressing instance, and that it was sanctioned by the Postmaster General; and that such agreement, so sanctioned, is an interference with the honest pursuits of the free citizens of these United States; that it tends to establish an odious and oppressive monopoly, and is an unjust invasion of private rights. 14. Resolved, That it does appear that mail contractors have received large extra allowances, and have, about the time of receiving such allowance, become the proprietors or conductors of newspaper presses of a partisan character. It also appears that a newspaper editor 23d CoNg. 1st Sess.]
.Affairs of the Post Office Department.
in the State of New Hampshire is a contractor for carrying the mail on numerous routes, “with newspaper privilege;” and that every such act or artifice tending to unite the press with the Post Office Department, is a dangerous abuse, and ought to be corrected.
IN SENATE, June 9, 1834. Mr. GRUNDY presented the following paper as containing the views of the minority of the committee, which was ordered to be appended to, and printed with the report of the majority. The undersigned, two of the five members composing the Committee on the Post Office and Post Roads, to which was referred the resolution of the Senate of the 29th March last, directing an examination to be made into the present condition of the Post Office Department, differing essentially in their views from the majority of the committee, consider it their duty to present a statement of the result of their inquiries, which it is believed is fully sustained by the testimony taken, and by the books and documents of the Department. The committee were agreed in the opinion, that it was a duty which they owed, no less to the Postmaster General himself, than to the public, to give all the branches of that Department as thorough an examination as practicable. The first and leading point which attracted attention, was its financial condition. The report of the Postmaster General of November 30th, 1832, showed an expenditure, for the year ending 30th June, of that year, exceeding the amount of revenue for the same period, by $7,530 18. It also showed an increase, in the amount of mail transportation, within the same period, at the rate of 8,156,329 miles, equal to upwards of a million of miles more than half of the whole annual transportation of the mail in 1829. It also showed a surplus of available funds at the disposal of the Department, to the amount of $202,811 40. The report of the Postmaster General of November 30, 1833, showed that the expenses for transportation of the mail, prior to the 1st July, 1829, had been $64,248 76 more than had been reported; and, that the expenses for the same object from the 1st of July, 1829, to the 1st of July, 1832, had been $141,407 31, making together an expense of $205,656 07 beyond the amount which had been reported to the latter period. This exceeded the sum reported as a surplus on that day, and left an actual deficit, on the 1st of July, 1832, of $2,844 67 beyond the whole amount of available funds, including all postages which had accrued prior to that day. The same report showed an increase in the transportation of the mail, within the year ending the 30th June, 1833, at the annual rate of 3,229,464 miles; and an excess of expenditure beyond the revenue of the Department, to the amount of $195,208 40. The report also exhibited the annual expense of transportation to be, at the time of making the report $2,033,289 42, and the incidental expenses of the Department about $90,000, making together the aggregate expense, for the year which will end the 30th June, 1834, $2,123,289 42, while the nett proceeds of postages, for the year ending the 30th June, 1833, was but $1,790,254 65. This ex cess of expense must necessarily have continued to the close of the year 1833, from which period the retrenchments were to commence, which the Postmaster General stated in his report to have been directed. Taking the report for a basis on which to raise the calculation, and the expenses of the Department will have been, from July 1, 1833, to December 31, 1833, $1,061,644 71 The nett proceeds of postages for the same period, as nearly as can be ascertained are 941,368 61
In the above estimate of 300,000 dollars, due to the Department on the 1st of April last, of postages which accrued prior to the 1st of January, there is no possibility of testing its accuracy by any other estimate, because it is not an estimate of the postages that accrued from the 1st of October to the 31st of December, 1833, the greater portion of which had been collected before the 1st of April, but it embraces all the remaining balances due to the Department on the 1st of April, of all the postages which had accrued from the beginning of the Government, so far as they are believed to be available. It must be obvious, therefore, that no correct estimate can be made of their amount, without going over every account, many thousands in number, striking the balance of each, and adding these balances together. This we have not done, and the labor which it would require is so great as to render it impracticable at this time.
It is also proper to observe, that of the 500,000 dollars, estimated as the proceeds of the quarter ending on the 31st of March, 1834, a part had been paid over by deposites to the credit of the Department, before the termination of that quarter; but so far as they had been thus paid over, they had been applied to the payment of claims against the Department; so that if their payment in part lessened the amount due to the Department, their application lessened in the same degree the amount due from the Department.
It should here be noticed, that many of the postmasters, in the most productive post offices, are required, by the regulations of the Department, to deposite to its credit in bank, a portion of the proceeds of their offices before the close of the quarter. Some of these make their deposites weekly, some monthly, and some not till after the end of tise quarter. Of the postage collected at the several post offices, it is estimated that about onehalf, or a little more than one-half, is deposited in banks, and the remainder is drawn by drafts on postmasters in favor of contractors. Of the amount deposited in banks, it is estimated that about one-half is deposited before the [23d Cong. 1st Sess.
.Affairs of the Post Office Department.
close of the quarter; so that the amount thus deposited of the current proceeds, before the close of a quarter, is estimated at about one-fourth of the whole proceeds of the quarter, and is available by the Department to the payment of transportation, for services rendered during the preceding quarter, the compensation for services for transportation rendered in one quarter being payable in the next. This, however, does not affect the means of the Department for meeting its engagements, because the same means recur by the current deposites, to an amount, at least equal, in every successive quarter. It would only produce this result: that if the Department were to close its operations, and wind up its business, at the termination of any quarter, it would be found about one month behindband in its resources, beyond what it would be if its operations continued. These current payments have always been relied upon by the Department, and while it continues its operations, they can never fail. They do not, therefore, sensibly affect the statement of the present condition of the Department. - By the last report of the late Postmaster General, 17th November, 1828, the annual transportation of the mail, at that time, was 13,610,039 miles. From the reports of the present Postmaster General, which report is corroborated by a statement of all the mail routes, with their dis tances, and the frequency of transportation on each, it appears that the annual amount of transportation of the mail, on the 1st July, 1832, was 23,625,021 miles; and on the 1st July, 1833, it appears to have been further increased to 26,854,485 miles, nearly double the amount of what it was when the present incumbent took charge of the Department. It also appears, from the report of the Postmaster General to the Senate, of the 3d of March last, that the whole amount of allowances to contractors for extra services, by which this great increase of transportation was mainly effected, was $485,662 41 per annum. To this sum should be added the expense of carrying into effect the law of the 15th of June, 1832, establishing additional post routes, which is estimated in the report of 3d of March, (last page,) at $125,341 88. On those new routes, no revenue of any considerable amount could be expected for some time, especially for the first one or two years. The allowances for these extra services (all taken together) appear to be quite within the bounds of moderation, when compared with the amount of additional services rendered; and taken in connexion with the expense of establishing the new mail routes, required by the law of 1832, and the loss of revenue occasioned by the ex. tension of the franking privilege to members of Congress, throughout the year, and the circumstance of the expenses in 1829 being much greater than the revenues of the Department, the present deficit is fully accounted for. These extra services were designed for no other end than the benefit of the community. At the earnest solicitation of many citizens, urged in most cases by members of Congress, and others high in public confidence, the facilities were granted by the Postmaster General, and have been enjoyed by the community. In his great desire to satisfy the wishes of every section of the coun. try, and to render the Department as extensively useful as possible, he has gone too far, because he has exceeded the moneyed means of his Department. But he appears, for the reasons assigned in his report which has been communicated to the Senate, to have been unapprized of the exact condition of the financial concerns of the Department, till the deficiency actually appeared. He then made the investigation, which resulted in disclosing the cause, and applied the corrective with as much promptness as the public interest would admit. The want of a more perfect organization of the Post office Department by law, is calculated to produce em: barrassment, and often to subject its head to unmerited
animadversion. The other Departments of the Government are organized with sub-officers, holding their appointments from the Executive, who superintend the different branches, and share the responsibility. The Post Office Department was but small in the beginning, and has grown rapidly into its present magnitude and importance. To this circumstance it is probably owing that it has hitherto been left without proper organization. The individual who may happen to be at its head, is held responsible for every thing; though its business is so multifarious and extended that no individual can possibly superintend all its branches. It was formerly the case that all its funds were at the disposal of a single person, without any check whatever upon him, or even the meaus of knowing whether the surplus funds were in deposite, or diverted from their legitimate object. The present incumbent has established a rule which is calculated to prevent abuse. No moneys can now pass into the hands of an individual, without the concurrence of at least two officers of the Department. If it be a payment for trans. portation, it requires the requisition of the principal payclerk, and a check signed by the treasurer and by an Assistant Postmaster General, before the money can be drawn. If for any other purpose, it requires the requi. sition of the Postmaster General himself, or an account audited by one officer, and approved by another, and a check in either case to be signed by both these officers, before the money can be drawn. This we conceive to be a very salutary improvement in the financial operations of the Department, and well calculated to prevent abuses; but as it is only a regulation of the Postmaster General, it is subject to change at his pleasure. He has indeed given to the system all the effect which he has the power of doing; but to give it permanency, so as to constitute a perpetual and effectual barrier against abuse, we are of opinion that it should have the saction of law; and that the officers exercising these powers should hold their offices, as in other departments, not at the pleasure of the person who may fill the place of the head of the Department, but of the President and Senate. The last report of the late Postmaster General showed that the expenditures for the year ending the 1st of July, 1828, exceeded the revenues of the Department upwards of 25,000 dollars. Between that time and the following March, when he left the Department, the contracts had been made for the new routes, established by the law of 1828, involving a very considerable of expense. The present Postmaster General took charge of the Department in April, 1829, and his first report showed that the expenses of the Department for the year ending July 1st, 1829, were nearly 75,000 dollars more than all its revenues for the same period. Thus it appears that the course of administering the Department which produced the deficit in its means, began as early as 1827, or the commencement of 1828, and has continued from that period to the close of the last year. To meet the exigencies of the case, the Post General resorted to loans from banks, on which he had paid interest prior to the 1st of April last, $14,570 42, and the further amount which accrued to the 1st May, was $5,510, making together the sum of $20,080 42 interest to the 1st of May, 1834, as per document No. 4. These loans were made on the faith and credit of the Post Office Department, and not of the Treasury; yet, while the moneys of the Treasury are abundant, it does not seem to comport with good economy for one department of the Government to be paying interest to banks for the use of money, while money is deposited in banks by another department of the Government without interest. The committee therefore applied by letter to the Postmaster General for a statement of his opinion of the amount which would relieve his Department from pecuniary embarrassment. In answer to this inquiry, he stated that if, of the moneys
We therefore recommend the passage of a law authoring the measure, to the amount and on the conditions thus stated by the Postmaster General.
The Postmaster General has been in the habit of re. porting annually to Congress the contracts made for transporting the mail, with the name of each contractor, and the annual amount of compensation stipulated in the contract. In comparing the contracts made in the fall of 1831 with the report of the Postmaster General made to Congress in the beginning of 1832, it was found that in some cases the contracts, as they are in actual operation, do not agree with that report. An inquiry was instituted into the cause of this disagreement; and we were informed that when proposals are received for the advertised contracts, they are registered in a book called the “Proposal Book;” that when these bids are decided by the Postmaster General, the word “accepted” is written against the name of the person to whom a route is assigned; that this is regarded virtually as the contract, though sometimes the written instrument is not executed for months after; that from this proposal book the report for Congress is made out, the name of the person copied, and the sum at which the proposal was accepted; that sometimes modifications are subsequently made in the contracts, even before the services under them commence; and that in such cases there will appear a disagreement, as above stated. Upon further examination, we found that such had been the practice of the Department under former administrations; and as a proof of it, we state a few similar cases which we have noted from a comparison made by ourselves, of the contracts made by the Postmaster General in the fall of 1828, with his report to Congress, in the beginning of 1829. They are as follows:
Eli Ensign is reported as having contracted to trans. port the mail between Hudson and Pittsfield for 700 dol. lars a year; but his contract made in 1828 is for 1,000 dollars. Thomas J. Magee is reported as having contracted to carry the mail on several routes for 10,225 dollars a year; but his contract made in 1828 is for 11,843 dollars a year. Russell Case is reported as having contracted to carry the mail between Utica and Ithaca for 950 dollars a year; but the contract was made with Parker and Co. in 1828 for 1,425 dollars a year. Eli Ensign is reported as having contracted to carry the mail between Bridgeport and Bennington for 1,100 dollars a year; but his contract made in 1828 is for 1,250 dollars a year. He is also reported as having contracted to carry the mail between Hartford and Albany for 1,000 dollars a year, but his con. tract made in 1828 is for 1,500 dollars a year. Pettis, Day, & Co. are reported as having contracted to carry the mail between Boston and Windsor, and between Windsor and Burlington, for 3,000 dollars a year; but their contract made in 1828 is for 4,400 dollars a year. Hiram Plummer is reported as having contracted to carry the mail between Boston and Dover for 800 dollars a year; but his contract made in 1828 is for 1,250 dollars a year. In all these cases, the report to Congress is made to agree with the proposal book, though the contracts are differ. ently executed. The fact is therefore established, that the report of 1832 was made in conformity with the ancient usage of the Department; and under this mode of
reporting, a disagreement will exist whenever a modification of the contract shall be made subsequent to the acceptance of the proposal. This practice, however, we consider erroneous, and are pleased to see that it is changed in the report of contracts made to the present session of Congress, in which, not the proposals accepted, but the contracts according to the changes and modifications afterwards made are reported; this is proper and necessary to enable Congress to have a full and correct view of the contracts and engagements made by the Department. The Postmaster General, in his report of Nevember 30, 1832, stated the annual transportation of the mail to be 23,625,021 miles, making an increase from 1829 of 9,925,021 miles. A suspicion had been intimated of the correctness of this statement; and on an investigation of the subject, the following appeared to be the facts: The late Postmaster General, in his last report, November, 1828, stated, that on the 1st July, 1823, the annual transportation of the mail was, In stages, - - - 4,489,744 miles, On horseback, - - 5,511,496 “ That there had been added, from that time to July 1, 1828, in stages, On horseback, - -
1,658,949 “ This made the annual transportation of
the mail on 1st July, 1828,
The committee procured a list of all the post routes as they were in operation on the 1st of July, 1832, with the length of each, the manner of performance, and the frequency with which the mails were then transported, (Document No. 18,) from which it appears that the annual transportation of the mail on the 1st of July, 1832, was 23,632,330 miles; and that the increase to that period from the 1st of July, 1828, was 10,022,291 miles, exclusive of the additional extent occasioned by the underestimate hereafter pointed out. The report of 1832, made the whole amount of the annual transportation to be 23,625,021 miles, which is 7,309 miles less than the result of the calculation now made. This mode of ascertaining the amount of the annual transportation was deemed less liable to error, than any that could be resorted to. Besides, a further security for its correctness is furnished by the fact, that the length of each route is given, and the number of times the mail is transported thereon; so that any error contained in it may be easily detected. The fact of a discrepancy between the report of 1832 and the calculation now made, to the small amount of 7,309 miles in so many millions, affords strong evidence of its general accuracy, and especially when it is considered that the calculation now made and exhibited exceeds the amount then reported. The idea that the report of 1832, from any motive, placed the annual transportation of the mail beyond the true amount, is disproved by the fact, that it falls short of it by a calculation now made, from the most unerring data that can be obtained.
In this place we would state, that the committee employed Dr. Phineas Bradley, one of the late Assistant Postmaster Generals, who called to his assistance his brother, Abraham Bradley, the other late Assistant Postmaster General, to aid them in their investigations. It was supposed that the long experience of these gentlemen in the Department would enable them to prosecute some branches of the inquiry with more facility and success than could otherwise be done. The report of the result of their inquiries has been furnished the committee, and in comparing it with the reports of the Department, we discover a considerable discrepancy, for which we can readily account.
The Messrs. Bradleys observe in their report that the Postmaster General reported, in November, 1829, that