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April 26, 1830.]

Yant, Tucker, Verplanck, Washington, Weeks, White, of
New York, White, of Louisiana, Wickliffe, Wilde, win-
gate, Yancey.—123.
NAYS.-Messrs. Angel, Arnold, Bailey, Barber, Bart-
§: Bates, Bell, Blair, of Tennessee, Burges, Butman, Clay,
C ark, Condict, Cooper, Crane, Creighton, Crowninshield,
Davis, of Massachusetts, Dwight, Everett, of Vermont,
Everett, of Massachusetts, Gorham, Grennell, Hawkins,
Hughes. Hunt, Huntington, Kennon, Martindale, McCoy,
Miller, Pearce, Pettis, Pierson, Reed, Rose, Sill, stanbe.
:y, Standiser, Stephens, Storrs, of Connecticut, Suther.
land. Swann, Taylor, Vance, Vinton, Whittlesey, Williams,
Young—49. -
So the resolution was adopted.
On motion of Mr. BUCHANAN,
Ordered. That — — be appointed a committee to
g” to the Senate, and at the bar thereof, in the name of
the House of Representatives, and of all the people of the
United States, to impeach James H. Peck, judge of the
district tourt of the United States for the district of Mis-
souri, of high misdemeanors in office; end acquaint the
Senate that the House of Representatives will in due time
exhibit particular articles of impeachment against him, and
make good the same; and that the Senate be requested to
make order for the appearance of the said James H. Peck,
to make answer to the same.
The committee was ordered to consist of two members.
On motion of Mr. STORRS, it was
Joesolved. That a committee be appointed to prepare and
report to this House articles of impeachment against James
H. Peck, district judge for the State of Missouri, for misde.
meanors in his said office.
The committee was ordered to consist of five.

Monday, APRIL 26, 1830. o
THE ARMY.

The House resumed the consideration of the resolution directing the Secretary of War to report to the next Congress an organization of the army, with a view to a reduction of the number of the officers. . Mr. SPENCER, of New York, observed that the resolution seemed aimed at an institution, (the West Point Academy,) which is the ornament and safety of the country; and with a view to try the sense of the House on it, and put an end to the protracted debate, he moved to lay the resolution on the table. Mr. DESHA requested Mr. S. to withdraw his motion, to give him [Mr. D.] an opportunity of making some further remarks on the subject; but Mr. SPENCER said he could not do so compatibly with his sense of duty, and the gentleman must excuse him. The question was then put on laying the resolution on the table, and negatived by the following vote: yeas, 64– nays, 96. Mr. DESHA then spoke at some length in further sup: port of the policy of reducing the number of officers, and against the Military Academy. Mr. WILDE did not rise to address the House again on the merits of the resolution; but not wishing to vote for it in its ğ. shape, and the House having refused to lay it on the table, he rose to offer an amendment which would make it more acceptable to himself and perhaps man others. At present the resolution was not a simple inquiry; it would carry with it an expression of opinion by the House on the question of reducing the number of officers. This he disapproved of; and, to obviate the objection, he moved to strike out the matter of the resolution, and substitute the following: That the Secretary of War report to the House, at its next session, “whether any reduction in the number of officers in the army of the United States ean be made without injury to the public service, and, if any,

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The bill from the Senate making an appropriation for obtaining an exchange of lands with the Indians, and for removing the Indians west of the Mississippi, was twice read. Mr. BELL moved to refer the bill to the Committee of the Whole on the state of the Union. Mr. DWIGHT thought that, as some important amendments had been made o, the Senate, it was desirable to obtain the sense of the Committee on Indian Affairs regarding these amendments, before they were committed to the Committee of the Whole on the state of the Union. Mr. BELL said, the amendments were substantially the same in principle as the bill which was reported by the Committee on Indian Affairs contained. Mr. LUMPKIN made some remarks to the same effect. Mr. DWIGHT then withdrew his motion, and the bill was committed to the Committee of the Whole on the state

of the Union.
THE TARIFF.

Mr. MALLARY, with a view to go into committee on the tariff bill, moved to postpone the intervening orders of the day, amongst which was the bill respecting the Tennessee lands, which Mr. CROCKETT made an earnest effort to prevent from being postponed; but Mr. MALLARY's motion prevailed, and The House went into Committee of the Whole, Mr. Polk in the chair, and took up the bill to alter the several tariff acts, to provide for the more effectual collection of duties, and to prevent evasions of the revenue. Mr. McDUFFIE rose, and commenced by saying that the bill under consideration was designed to enforce existing laws of the country, and effect a more faithful collec. tion of the duties on imports. This was an object right and proper in itself, and one which he was willing to promote. He would be always in favor of enforcing the faithful collection of the revenue even though he might object to the laws by which it was levied. In this case, however, he would attain the faithful collection of the revenue by a mode different from that contemplated by the bill. He would do it by diminishing the duties, and thereby removing the inducement to evade the duties. With this view, he moved to amend the bill as follows: Strike out all of the bill after the first section, and insert the following: Sec. 2. And be it further enacted, That, from and after the 30th of June next, so much of the act of the 19th of May, 1828, as increases the duty on wool manufactured, and on manufactures of wool, or of which wool shall be a component part, be repealed, leaving the duties on said articles as they stood previous to the passage of that act; and that, from and after the 30th of June, 1831, so much of the act of the 22d May, 1824, as increases the duties on the aforesaid articles, be, and the same is also repealed, leaving the said duties as they stood previous to the passage of the said act. And be it further enacted, That from and after the 30th of June next, so much of the aforesaid acts of the 19th of May, 1828, as increases the duty on iron in bars and bolts, whether manufactured by rolling or hammering, on hemp, on flax, on cotton bagging, on molasses, on indigo, on manufactures of cotton, or of which cotton is a component part, be repealed, leaving the said duties as they stood previous to the passage of the said act; and that so much of the aforesaid act of the 22d May, 1824, as increased the duty on any of the aforesaid articles, be repealed from and after the 36th of June, 1831, leaving the duties on the said

what reduction; together with a plan for the most efficient

articles as they stood before the passage of that act.

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And be it further enacted, That the duty ou salt be reduced to ten cents per bushel of fifty-six pounds, from and after the 30th of June next.

Mr. McDUFFIE then proceeded to discuss, at large, the policy of the protecting system, and to exhibit what he deemed its pernicious effects on the various interests of the country. He had spoken about two hours, when he stated that he had now gone through the dry and less interesting topics involved in the discussion; what he had further to say on the subject, touched considerations of a character more vital and interesting. Being, however, somewhat fatigued, he would prefer postponing his further remarks until to-morrow.

MAYSVILLE ROAD BILL.

Mr. LETCHER, of Kentucky, for the purpose of indulging the gentleman, suggested that the committee should lay aside this bill, and take up, for the remainder of the sitting, some minor bill, that would occupy but little time; and he therefore moved that the committee take up the bill authorizing a subscription on the part of the Government to the stock of the Maysville and Lexington Turnpike road; which motion prevailed, and the bill was accordingly read. Mr. LETCHER rose in explanation of the bill. He said he did not at present intend to do more than to offer, for the information of the House, a very brief statement of facts connected with this application to Congress. The Legislature of the State of Kentucky, [said he] by a well drawn and well guarded charter, have incorporated a company to construct the road referred to in the bill just read, under the name of “the Maysville, Washington, Paris, and Lexington Turnpike Company.” The subject is one of very great solicitude in the State, and more particularly in that interesting portion of it through which the road is to run. The attention of the General Government has long since been drawn to the importance and utility of this great highway; and under its immediate direction, skilful engineers, in the year 1827, made a survey from Zanesville, in Ohio, to Florence, in Alabama, including that portion of it over which the contemplated road is to be made. The report of the engineers, sir, is now before me—it is made out with great care, enters minutely into details, and, upon examination, will, I trust, be found entirely satisfac. factory and accurate. With the indulgence of the House, sir, I will add onl a word or two to show the great importance of the road, and to prove, that, by granting the subscription of stock asked for, the Government will not expose itself either to loss or injury, but, on the contrary, will be highly benefited. Maysville is a flourishing and growing village, on the south side of the Ohio river, about sixty miles above Cincinnati. It is already a point of considerable commercial consequence, and no doubt will continue to increase rapidly, both in wealth and commerce. It is justly considered the great depot of the Kentucky merchants who trade to the East. From that point an immense quantity of merchandise, as well as other articles, is conveyed through various portions of the State. The road designed to be improved is intended to intersect the great national road in the State of Ohio. It connects itself also on each side with the Ohio river. These two connexions most certainly and justly entitle it to the appellation of a national work. Its present condition is too bad to be particularly described, probably the very worst in the United States, while at the same time it is more travelled, in proportion to the population of the country, than any other section of the West. The facility with which it can be constructed, and the small expense compared with the great benefit to the country, recommends in the strongest manner the proposition to take stock to the favorable consideration of the House. The bill is well

Maysville Road Bill.

[APRIL 26, 1830, guarded. The subscription now asked is not to be advanc. ed., until enough has been actually paid by individuals and the State, to equal the amount paid by the General Government. The sum reserved to individuals has all been subscribed, amounting to seventy-five thousand dol. lars, and the State of Kentucky has subscribed seventy-five thousand dollars more; both these sums are to be fully paid before the subscription of the United States is to be demanded. To illustrate the importance of this road, I have a few strong facts to lay before the House. The company hired a man during one month, to record the number of persons, wagons, horses, eattle, &c. which passed over the road; and the average for a day, derived from this record, amounts to three hundred and fifty-one persons, thirty-three carriages, and fifty-one wagons.

I hold the document in my hand, subject to the inspec. tion of any gentleman who may desire to examine it.

There is do intention to induce the House to subscribe to a mere ueighborhood road. The calculation above quoted must convince every gentleman that this is a road greatly travelled-that it is both useful and used. And while the aid of Government will put it in a good condi. tion, the Government will not lose a dollar by its benefi. cent operation. It is known to many gentleman on this floor, that the road is one of the worst in all our country. In the winter it is almost inpassable, owing to the depth of the soil, which readily forms deep mud holes. Such is the difficulty of getting along, that the wagoners have sometimes to join themselves in gangs to lends each other assistance. Double teams are often hitched to the same wagon; and not unfrequently they become so deeply mired that the neighbors have to turn out to aid the teamsters, and in winter it often happened, after sticking in the mire, that they are frozen up entirely. The same state of things exists in reference to the mail; and a great saving will be effected by the Government, both as to time and expense in its transportation. Should the road be properly made, the saving on this head alone will more than compensate you, even if the money was given, instead of subseribed. I promised, sir, to be very brief; I trust I have fulfilled that promise. Whilst I do not desire or anticipate anyo position to the passage of the bill, yet I hold myself § now, and at all times, to defend it, should any be offered . Mr. FOSTER, of Georgia, moved to strike out the enact. ing clause of the bill. He could not but feel surprised at the confidence expressed by the gentleman from Kentucky, [Mr. LETCHERJ that the bill would meet with no opposition; this surprise was only equally by that which he felt at the support which the committee on Roads and Qanals had given to the proposed measure by even reporting the bill. But the gentleman tells us this is a national road—and what are the evidences of its na: tionality? Why, forsooth, that immense numbers of horses, wagons, &c. travel it, and that in certain seasons of the year it is almost impassable. Really, sir, [said Mr. F.] if these are the characteristics of a national road, our country abounds with them; there is scarcely a market road in Georgia or Carolina, which might not, with great propriety, claim the distinction. But Mr. F., was too much indisposed to enter into a discussion of the merits of the bill, and was satisfied with having drawn the attention of the committee to it.

Mr. HAYNES o whether any survey of this road had been made by the United States' engineers; or whe. ther the House was to take the statement of the on the estimates of those interested. . Mr. LETCHER replied, that an engineer named. Wil. liams, the same person who had been employed by the Goyernment on the Cumberland road, had surveyed this road. It had also been reported on by engineers in the United States' service,

Mr. HAYNES said, we all know with what facility such surveys are procured, and how easy it is to get subscrip

expense

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tions to any new scheme, especially where the Government is to be a partner. Some years ago, the House was urged to subseribe to some such undertaking. He believed it was to the Chesapeake and Delaware canal, when it was pressed as an argument in its favor, that the Dismal Swamp canal, a link in the great chain of internal communication, as it is called, had been completed; and yet, since he had been a member of this House, a further subscription had been asked and obtained to the stock of the Dismal Swamp canal; since which time, a further subscription had been obtained for the same object. Four years ago, we had been asked to subscribe one hundred thousand dollars to the stock of the Louisville and Portland canal, as necessary for its completion, which was granted. Since that time, a further subscription, of what precise amount he did not recollect, had been sought and obtained, and a still further subscription is now asked for. He said, that, laying aside every other consideration but the mere question of expediency, (although his opinions as to the constitutionality of such measures are well known,) he trusted the House would consider maturely before it engaged in such an undertaking. , Mr. LETCHER replied. Mr. HAYNES regretted that the honorable gentleman [Mr. Letchen) should have supposed him capable of entertaining vindictive feelings tewards Kentucky, Kentuckians, or to any enterprise in which they were interested. He cherished too high a respect for the gentleman from that State, with whom he had become acquainted here and elsewhere, to indulge such feelings. [Mr. LETCHER explained, and disclaimed such an imputation.] Mr. HAYNES said, he could not permit the inference to be drawn from the remarks of the gentleman from Kentucky, that he [Mr. H.] entertained i. opinion that this Government has the power to engage in works of internal improvement. In his opinion, the subscription, to stock stood precisely on the same footing, in principle, with a direct appropriation of money for the construction of a road or canal. Indeed, he considered it as not differing

from the construction of such a work by the Government.

He conisdered the power of taxation to be limited by the specific, grants in the constitution, and, consequently, the power of appropriation was subject to the same limi. tations. The relative could not be broader than its antecedent. However, he did not intend to argue the constitutional question, but thought thus much necessary by way of protest against all such acts whatsoever.

Mr. LETCHER, in reply, insisted that the road in this bill was strictly national in its character. Sir, [said he] from what has fallen from the two gentlemen from Georgia, [Mr. Foster and Mr. HayNEs] I must have been pecuiiarly unfortunate in the very few remarks I had the honor of submitting when first up. I endeavored to make myself understood. I stated then, sir, and now repeat that statement, that it is expected, and that it is designed to continue the road through the State of Ohio, until it intersects the great national road usually known as the Cumberland road, and that this was the commencement of the scheme. Yet, sir, gentlemen seem to misunderstand, or to misapply, what has been said, and to persist in the intimation, that the object is to obtain governmental assistance for local accommodation. It is not so. The object, sir, has been fully and fairly avowed. Until now, I had supposed it was very generally admitted that the most unexceptionable method in which the Government could engage in works of internal improvement, was to subscribe stock in companies formed by individual enterprise. But, at present, it seems to be feared by the gentlemen that this is the mode best calculated to draw money from the treasury, to be distributed or given in a neighborhood. He begged gentlemen to believe, that though the road was exceedingly bad, and a good one much needed, yet the friends of the bill were far, very far, from asking anything

in the shape of charity. They asked for no gift, no, nothing like it; but merely invited a subscription of stock to assist in the improvement of a most important and useful work, and one which was known to be strictly national. Though Kentucky had never yet received a cent from this Government, while she saw the public money expended elsewhere for objects of internal improvement, who, sir, has ever heard her utter a groan, or heave a sigh . He trusted she would always have too much pride to beg or to murmur. No, sir, her people are not a begging people. She had always voted to appropriate money for similar objects; and whenever any scheme of the kind was proposed to the House, she presented almost an undivided front. And why? Not from any selfish and sordid motives, but because she was anxious to promote the Fo and interest of the country, a part of which she is, I hope, considered. Whilst one of the gentlemen from Georgia urged his objections to the bill, sir, the other, I thought, seemed much grieved at the subscription which had heretofore been made to the Louisville and Portland canal, and argued that more money was to be applied for before the adjournment of Congress. When that bill is called u sir, let the gentleman offer his objections to it. My ... league, [Mr. WickLIFFE) who represents that region of the country, will be ready to meet him. But I beg of the gentleman, [Mr. HAYNEs] whatever vindictive feelings he may entertain towards that measure, not to wreak his vengeance upon this unoffending one. The Louisville canal is no Kentucky measure, and the State cannot be charged with the investment made by the Government for that work. It is a measure in which the States above and below Kentucky, I might almost say, sir, are exclusively interested. The improvement now so warmly opposed by the two honorable gentlemen, I acknowledge, sir, is of immense consequence to the State. It leads to one of the most fertile regions of the earth, and connects it with a navigable stream, a country beautiful and highly productive. Without it, what is our situation { Why, sir, a little like living in the happy valley, very difj. to get into it, and yet more difficult to get out of it. We have everything in great abundance, and to spare, that man could desire, except an outlet to a good market. We raise, sir, far more than we can consume, and we are desirous of furnishing our neighbors out of the surplus, on the best terms, and upon the shortest notice. The road must be owned to be national as soon as it reached the great Ohio river. Did it lose its national character because it was to be so much used by the people of Kentucky : It has been emphatically asked why the State does not make the road herself, Sir, [said Mr. L.] the State is new, her resources are limited; she would make it if she could; she seeks nothing of you as a gift, but only a little assistance to advance your own interests as well as hers. You are a rich and able Government, with ample means at your command, and cannot lose one cent by complying with her request. Will you refuse it? Let me, sir, put one plain question to the friends and to the opposers of internal improvement. What would you think of the character of a father, who had eight or ten children, each of whom possessed a fine farm, rich and fertile, well situated, and in perfect order, if a younger child, always affectionate and dutiful, who had ever been ready to serve its parents by day or by night, in peace or in war, and who had not deserted him in his deepest affliction, should resent itself before him, and say, father, I see that all my É. are prosperous and happy, they have fine settle. ments and are doing well—I am glad to see it. I helped all I could to make them so. I do not envy any one of them his good fortune. My own farm, however, is in a bad condition. I have had a great deal of hard work to do, and at this moment I am a little behindhand; and as you, father, are in funds just now, I pray you to advance

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me a small sum to aid me in completing an improvement highly advantageous both to you and to me; I ask it not as a gift, but merely the use of it for a short period. Sir, is there a gentleman here who could or would justify the father in refusing such a request? and what sort of a father must he be who could turn that child from his door? The case I have put, I think, sir, illustrates our true situation. I will not comment upon it. I will say, however, we scorn to complain of the help which has been extended to others; but we shall think it very strange and very unkind, if, when, we come for the first time, and ask you to do a most just and reasonable thing, to aid an enterprise in every respect worthy of the patronage of the Government, ou "should refuse it. I hope my friend from Georgia Mr. Fosten) does not desire to throw any unnecessary Sbstacles in the way of this bill, should it be the pleasure of a majority to pass it; and I would most respectfully submit to him to withdraw his motion to strike out the first section, and let the bill be reported to the House. He can afterwards make any opposition he may think fit. This course will save a great deal of time, and I trust he will consent to it. Mr. FOSTER said that he most cheerfully aceorded to the chivalrous and high-minded Kentuckians all the respect and gratitude to which their sufferings and services in the cause of our common country so eminently entitled them. Nor had he for a moment considered, much less intimated, that, in making the application which the bill under consideration is designed to favor, they approached us in the language of supplication or complaint; he knew too well the proud and lofty spirit of that gallant people, to believe that they would descend to either. Mr. F. would trouble the committee with only a few words more in relation to the particular object of this bill. The gentleman [Mr. LEroHER] who advocates it with so much zeal, has told us, with his usual candor, that this is only the beginning of a design far more extensive— that this is only a portion of a great road which is to be constructed from Zanesville, in Ohio, to Florence, in Alabama. This is the body, the centre building of the great work—the wings are to be put uphereafter. And all these are objects of national importance! Sir, [said Mr. F.] it would be easy to point out five hundred, yes, five thousand roads of the same description. Mr. F.hoped that no gentleman would suspect him of having any wish to impede the progress or improvement of the State of Kentucky; so far from it, he declared him. self proud to witness her growing prosperity. The Union .. her a great deal, not only for her achievements in the national defence, but for the splendid talents which she contributes to our national councils. Yet, with all his respect for the State, and her patriotic sons, he could not vote for the bill now on the table. He would, however, withdraw his motion for striking out the enacting clause, and suffer the bill to be reported to the House, when a direct vote can be taken on its passage. [The committee then rose.]

TUEsday, APRIL 27, 1830, PENITENTIARY PUNISHMENT.

The House then, according to the order of the day, took up the bill providing for the punishment of crimes within the District of Columbia, as it was reported by the Committee of the Whole. The discussion of the details of this bill consumed the do; sitting, and occupied the House till near five o'cloek. e point which gave rise to far the greater part of the debate, was that which grew out of the question whether slaves should be made liable to the same punishment, by confinement in the penitentiary, for the various offences described, as other persons. The Committee of the Whole House had adopted an amendment to insert the

word “free” in the provisions of the bill, so as to make them applicable to “free persons” only. On the question of concurring in this amendment, Messrs. TEST, POW. ERS, SPENCER, of New York, BUCHANAN, TAY. LOR, and PEARCE spoke in opposition to it, and Messrs. POLK, HAYNES, BOULDIN, WASHINGTON, and MERCER advocated it. Finally, The question was decided by yeas and nnys, againsteon. curring in the amendment, as follows: yeas, 73—nays, 88. Mr. HAYNES then moved to retain the discrimination in the fourth section, which prescribes the punishment for rape, so as to make this a penitentiary offence for “free" persons, and death, for slaves; the latter being the penalty of the offence under the existing laws of the District. This amendment was agreed to: yeas. 79—nays, 69. Mr. HAYNES then moved further to amend this clause, by inserting the word “white” after “free,” so as to exclude all colored persons from the penitentiary punishment for the offence, This motion was opposed by Messrs. SPENCER and BURGES, on the ground of the difficulty that would of ten occur in deciding whether a man was white or not; and was negatived: yeas, 54—nays, 66. Mr. BOULDIN moved to strike out the whole section, and thus leave the crime as it now is, to be punished in all cases with death; that being the penalty for it in all ci. vilized eountries. After some discussion, This motion was negatived: yeas, 54—nays, 65. . Mr. J. S. BARBOUR submitted his objections to the bill, growing out of the provisions relative to slaves, and going to effect the condition of that property in the cirgumjacent States, and moved to lay the bill on the table, but withdrew his motion at the request of Mr. SEMMES, who had an amendment to offer, which would obviate Mr. B.'s objections. While he was preparing it, Mr. DAYTON expressed his objections to the bill, as it was now shaped, and concluded by moving to lay the bill on the table. This question was decided, by yeas and nays, in the negative, as follows: yeas, 61—nays, 93. Mr. SEMMES then moved an additional section, providing that nothing contained in the bill should apply to slaves not residents of the District of Columbia; but that such slaves should be punished according to the laws as they now exist; which amendment was agreed to. Mr. BARRINGER next moved an amendment in the fourth section, the substance of which was to except slaves from penitentiary punishment for offences for which the punishment now is whipping; which amendment prevail. ed—69 to 61. Mr. HAYNES now renewed the motion to lay the bill on the table; but it was again negatived—yeas, 55. Mr. ALEXANDER then, intimating much repugnance to the bill as it now stood, and a desire to deliver his reasons for being averse to it, moved to postpone its further consideration to Thursday; which motion prevailed–93 to 40. [The following are the only remarks delivered on the subject in the possession of the publishers.] Mr. POWERS said, he rose for the purpose of answer. ing some arguments which had been advanced in favor of excluding slaves from the operation of the bill when under discussion upon a former occasion, and to state some facts which he had recently obtained, and with which the House was probably unacquainted. Mr. P. said, he would remark, preliminarily, that he was not one of those who believed either in the constitutional power of public policy of any interference of the General Government with the local regulations of a State whether they related to people of one color or another. Let each Government be kept in its proper sphere of action, and all subjects which are strictly and legitimately of a local cha

racter remain under the exclusive control of the State

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authorities, as was intended by the framers of the federal constitution, and the people of the States who adopted it. But these principles had no application to the District of Columbia, which, by the eighth section of the first article of the constitution, was placed under the exclusive jurisdiction of Congress. This is national ground, and that alone where the unchecked and undivided power of the Federal Government can operate. Yet, even here, Mr. P. thought it to be the duty of Congress to be exceedingly cautious that the tendency of its legislation should not be injurious to the interests of the adjoining States, except in eases where some general principle, or the paramount interests of this District, required it. In his opinion the bill embraeed such a Principle, and one which ought not to be yielded, although he could not perceive, nor did he believe it possible, that the bill without the amendment could produce any injurious effects upon the interests of Maryland and Virginia, or any other slave-holding States. deed, as it regards this District alone, he confessed that it was chiefly an abstract question of principle, be. eause, from the facts which he would presently state, it would satisfactorily appear, that, as to the practical operation of the bill, it was not very important whether the amendment prevailed or not; but for one he could not willingly adopt the principle, that slaves and free persons should not be put on the same ground as to punishment for crimes. Mr. P. went on to observe that, in the former discussion upon the bill, honorable gentlemen seemed to suppose that if slaves were sentenced to the penitentiary for erimes, their numbers would be so great as to fill up the so establishment, and render it necessary immediatey, and at great expense, to commence the building of more. How do facts sustain this argument? The truth appears to be, that there are very few slaves in this District in proportion to free persons, who are brought before courts of justice for the commission of offences, and this fact was highly creditable to their masters, who exer-. cised such salutary guardianship over the conduct and morals of their slaves, and removed from them the tempt. ation arising from want, by providing so well for their comfort. Mr. P. said he had addressed a letter of inquiry on this subject to the Clerk of Alexandria county, (Mr. Lee,) a lawyer of high respectability, whose answer he wished the Clerk to read to the House, and which was accordingly read, as follows: "Alexandria, 24th April, 1880. “SIR: I have received your letter of the 23d instant. Time will not admit of my making as particular an examination as I wish, to enable me to give a very accurate reply to your inquiry. What I shall now state is from general recollection. Slaves, by the law in force in this county, are, for misdemeanors, punishable in a summary way by a single justice, out of court, by stripes, at the public whipping I. not exceeding thirty-nine. Therefore, such eases do not eome before the court, or become publicly known. I have inquired of one of the magistrates who has been many years acting, and is an efficient and expe. rienced magistrate, as to the number of slaves he has had oceasion to have punished for misdemeanors. He states that he has had but one slave whipped, though there have been brought before him many slaves charged with criminal offenees, that is, with misdemeanors, whom he has disellarged. I have understood from a source on which I rely, that a justice of the peace for this county, who resides in the country, has said that during the time he has been a magistrate, which is about eighteen years, he has had only one slave whipped. A third justice has stated that, during the year 1829, he has not had before him more than ten to twelve slaves charged with any offence. Soune of them he has discharged for want of sufficient evidenee, and some he has had whipped. This imagistrate

does about half the business in the town. With regard to free people of color, there are some offences which are punishable before a justice of the peace, and they are but few. All others are punishable by a verdict of a jury and judgment of the court. With regard to free people of color, I can state from my observation, both when I was practising as a lawyer in the court here, and since #. held my present station, that the number of free persons of color, compared to that of slaves, charged with offences before the court, cannot be in a less proportion than of ten to one, that is, ten free negroes to one slave. As to white offenders, they have exceeded black offenders, including. free and bond, in double, if not treble, the above proportion. I have been long satisfied that the lower class of the white population is much more vicious, and more apt to be guilty of offences, than either the slaves or the free persons of color; and that the free people of color are more vicious, and more prone to commit offences than the slaves. . With regard to the free people of color, they are tempted to it from the idle life they too generally lead —they steal instead of working for their living. The slaves are generally well treated, well clothed and fed, therefore have not the same motive, that of supplying their necessary wants, for becoming rogues. The class of white people I have mentioned, from the want of proper education and instruction, from the too easy acquirement of ardent spirits, and too wild a notion of what real civil and political rights are, mistake licentiousness for liberty, which produces great idleness, and this ends in crime.” Mr. P. then further stated that he had also received a letter on this subject from Mr. Hall, a lawyer of respectability and intelligence in this city, who was also a magistrate, from which he read the following extract: “I can, however, state, that, in the course of my experience as a magistrate, there have been, in the course of three years, brought before me forty-one persons charged with various crimes, of whom three only were slaves. I do indeed remember two others who were brought before me, but the charge against them, on the face of it importing no crime, I did not enter the cases upon my docket. Slaves are punishable by whipping; and, since I have been a magistrate, only one instance has occurred in which that punishment has been ordered by me.” In addition to this, he read the following extract of a letter from Mr. Swan, the District Attorney, who [Mr. P. remarked] was well known to many of the members of this House—“You ask what number of slaves, in proportion to free persons, are presented for crimes in this county. My impression is, that the proportion is very small— I should think not one-twentieth. In the number of presentments made to a court, amounting to from sixty to . eighty, we seldom have more than two or three cases

against slaves. The free colored people are more nu

merous; and the greater portion of cases that are presented for crimes of a felonious character, are against that deseription of people—that is, free colored people." ... Thus it appears [said Mr. P.] that crimes in this District are principally committed by the idle and dissolute free blacks, and a still more wretched and degraded class of white people; and this must naturally be the state of things where slavery exists, to discredit labor, and especially where miserable free blacks and whites are found in such numbers as flock into this District in pursuit of temporary employment or plunder. . These facts confirmed the position, that, as to the practical operation of this bill, it is quite unimportant whether slaves are embraced by it or not; and also show, that the apprehensions of gentlemen, that the penitentiary would become crowded with slave criminals, are utterly groundless. Several gentlemen had contended that the incarceration of slaves in the penitentiary would be little or no punishment to them—that they are slaves of individuals now, and would then only change masters, and become the

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