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Consular Establishment of the United States.
[22d CoNg. 2d SEss.
For the information of the representative of the deceased, it shall be the duty of the consul or vice consul authorized to proceed as aforesaid in the settlement of his estate, immediately to notify his death in one of the gazettes published in the consulate, and also to the Secretary of State, that the same may be notified in the State to which the deceased shall belong; and he shall also, as soon as may be, transmit to the Secretary of State an inventory of the effects of the deceased, taken as before directed. Sec. 3. ..And be it further enacted, That the said consuls and vice consuls, in cases where ships or vessels of the United States shall be stranded on the coasts ef their consulates, respectively, shall, as far as the laws of the country will permit, take proper measures, as well for the purpose of saving the said ships or vessels, their cargoes and appurtenances, as for storing and securing the effects and merchandise saved, and for taking an inventory or inventories thereof; and the merchandise and ef. fects saved, with the inventory or inventories thereof, taken as aforesaid, shall, after deducting therefrom the expense, be delivered to the owner or owners: Provided, That no consul or vice consul shall have authority to take possession of any such goods, wares, merchandise, or other property, when the master, owner, or consignee thereof is present, or capable of taking possession of the same. Sec. 4. And be it further enacted, That it shall and may be lawful for every consul and vice consul of the United States to take and receive the following fees of office for the services which he shall have performed: For authenticating, under the consular seal, every protest, declaration, deposition, or other act, which such captains, masters, mariners, seamen, passengers, merchants, or others, as are citizens of the United States, may respectively choose to make, the sum of two dollars. For taking into possession, inventorying, selling, and finally settling and paying, or transmitting, as aforesaid, the balance due on the personal estate left by any citizen of the United States who shall die within the limits of his consulate, five per centum on the gross amount of such estate. For taking into possession, and otherwise proceeding on, any such estate which shall be delivered over to the legal representative before a final settlement of the same, as is hereinbefore directed, two and a half per centum on such part delivered over as shall not be in money, and five per centum on the gross amount of the residué. And it shall be the duty of the consuls and vice consuls of the United States to give receipts for all fees which they shall receive by virtue of this act, expressing the particular services for which they are paid. Sec. 5. And be it further enacted, That in case it be found necessary for the interest of the United States that a consul or consuls be appointed to reside on the coast of Barbary, the President be authorized to allow an annual salary, not exceeding two thousand dollars, to each person so to be appointed: Provided, That such salary be not allowed to more than one consul for any one of the States on the said coast. SEc. 6. And be it further enacted, That every consul and vice consul shall, before they enter on the execution of their trusts, or if already in the execution of the same, within one year from the passing of this act, or, if resident in Asia, within two years, give bond, with such sureties as shall be approved by the Secretary of State, in a sum of not less than two thousand, nor more than ten thousand dollars, conditioned for the true and faithful discharge of the duties of his office, according to law, and also for truly accounting for all moneys, goods, and effects, which may come into his possession by virtue of this act: and the said bond shall be lodged in the office of the Secretary of the Treasury.
Sec. 7. And be it further enacted, That the specifica
tion of certain powers and duties in this act, to be exercised or performed by the consuls and vice consuls of the United States, shall not be construed to the exclusion of others resulting from the nature of their appointments, or any treaty or convention under which they may act.
..?n act of Congress of February 28, 1803, supplementary to the “...slet concerning Consuls and Vice Consuls,” and for the further protection of American seamen.
Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled, That, before a clearance be granted to any vessel bound on a foreign voyage, the master thereof shall deliver to the collector of the customs a list, containing the names, places of birth, and residence, and a description of the persons who compose his ship’s company, to which list the oath or affirmation of the captain shall be annexed, that the said list contains the names of his crew, together with the places of their birth and residence, as far as he can ascertain them, and the said collector shall deliver him a certified copy thereof, for which the collector shall be entitled to receive the sum of twenty-five cents; and the said master shall, moreover, enter into bond, with sufficient security, in the sum of four hundred dollars, that he shall exhibit the aforesaid certified copy of the list to the first boarding officer at the first port in the United States at which he shall arrive, on his return thereto, and then and there also produce the persons named therein to the said boarding officer, whose duty it shall be to examine the men with such list, and to report the same to the collector; and it shall be the duty of the collector at the said port of arrival, (where the same is different from the port from which the vessel originally sailed,) to transmit a copy of the list so reported to him, to the collector of the port from which said vessel originally sailed: Provided, That the said bond shall not be forfeited on account of the said master not producing to the first boarding officer, as aforesaid, any of the persons contained in the said list, who may be discharged in a foreign country with the consent of the consul, vice consul, commercial agent, or vice commercial agent, there residing, signified in writing, under his hand and official seal, to be produced to the collector with the other persons composing the crew, as aforesaid; nor on account of any such person dying or absconding, or being forcibly impressed into other service, of which satisfactory proof shall be then also exhibited to the collector.
Sec. 2, ..?nd be it enacted, That it shall be the duty of every master or commander of a ship or vessel belonging to citizens of the United States, who shall sail from any port of the United States after the first day of May next, on his arrival at a foreign port, to deposite his register, sea letter, and Mediterranean passport, with the consul, vice consul, commercial agent, or vice commercial agent, (if any there be at such port;) that, in case of refusal or neglect of the said master or commander to deposite the said papers as aforesaid, he shall forfeit and pay five hundred dollars, to be recovered by the said consul, vice consul, commercial agent, or vice commercial agent, in his own name, for the benefit of the United States, in any court of competent jurisdiction; and it shall be the duty of such consul, vice consul, commercial agent, or vice commercial agent, on such master or commander producing to him a clearance from the proper officer of the port where his ship or vessel may be, to deliver to the said master or commander all of his said papers: Provided, Such master or commander shall have complied with the provisions contained in this act, and those of the act to which this is a supplement.
Sec. 3. ..And be it further enacted, That whenever a shi or vessel belonging to a citizen of the United States .# be sold in a foreign country, and her company discharged,
or when a seaman or mariner, a citizen of the United States, shall, with his own consent, be discharged in a fo. reign country, it shall be the duty of the master or commander to produce to the consul, vice consul, commercial agent, or vice commercial agent, the list of his ship’s company, certified as aforesaid, and to pay to such consul, vice consul, commercial agent, or vice commercial agent, for every seaman or mariner so discharged, being designated on such list as a citizen of the United States, three months’ pay over and above the wages which may then be due to such mariner or seaman, two-thirds thereof to be paid by such consul or commercial agent to each seaman or mariner so discharged, upon his engagement on board of any vessel to return to the United States, and the other remaining third to be retained for the purpose of creating a fund for the payment of the passages of seamen or mariners, citizens of the United States, who may be desirous of returning to the United States, and for the maintenance of American seamen who may be destitute, and may be in such foreign port; and the several sums retained for such fund shall be accounted for with the treasury every six months, by the persons receiving the same.
Sec. 4. ..And be it further enacted, That it shall be the duty of the consuls, vice consuls, commercial agents, or vice commercial agents, of the United States, from time to time, to provide for the mariners and seamen of the United States who may be found destitute within their districts, respectively, sufficient subsistence and passages to some port in the United States, in the most reasonable manner, at the expense of the United States, subject to such instructions as the Secretary of State shall give; and that all masters and commanders of vessels belonging to citizens of the United States, and bound to some port of the same, are hereby required and enjoined to take such mariners or seamen on board of their ships or vessels, at the request of the said consuls, vice consuls, commercial agents, or vice commercial agents, respectively, and to transport them to the port in the United States to which such ships or vessels may be bound, on such terms, not exceeding ten dollars for each person, as may be agreed upon between the said master and consul or commercial agent. And the said mariners or seamen shall, if able, be bound to do duty on board such ships or vessels, according to their several abilities: Provided, That no master or captain of any ship or vessel shall be obliged to take a greater number than two men to every one hundred tons burden of the said ship or vessel, on any one voyage; and if any such captain or master shall refuse the same, on the request or order of the consul, vice consul, commercial agent, or vice commercial agent, such captain or master shall forfeit and pay the sum of one hundred dollars for each mariner or seaman so refused, to be recovered for the benefit of the United States in any court of competent jurisdiction. And the certificate of any such consul or commercial agent, given under his hand and official seal, shall be prima facie evidence of such refusal, in any court of law having jurisdiction for the recovery of the penalty aforesaid.
Ske; 5 sınd be it further enacted, That the secretary of State be authorized to reimburse the consuls, vice con. suls, commercial agents, or vice commercial agents, such reasonable. sums as they may heretofore have advanced for the relief of seamen, though the same should exceed the rate of twelve cents a man per diem.
Sec. 6; ind be it further enacted, That it shall and may be lawful for every consul, vice consul, commercial agent, and vice commercial agent of the United States, to take and receive, for every certificate of discharge of any seaman or mariner in a foreign port, fifty cents; and for commission on paying and receiving the amount of wages payable on the discharge of seamen in foreign ports, two and a half per centum.
Sec. 7. And be it further enacted, That if any consul, vice consul, commercial agent, or vice commercial agent shall, falsely and knowingly, certify that property belonging to foreigners is property belonging to citizens of the United States, he shall, on conviction thereof in-any court of competent jurisdiction, forfeit and pay a fine not exceeding ten thousand dollars, at the discretion of the court, and be imprisoned for any term not exceeding three years.
Sec. 8. And be it further enacted, That if any consul, vice consul, commercial agent, or vice commercial agent shall grant a passport, or other paper, certifying that any alien, knowing him or her to be such, is a citizen of the United States, he shall, on conviction thereof in any court of competent jurisdiction, forfeit and pay a fine not exceeding one thousand dollars.
consu LATE of THE UNITED STATES of AMERICA. A.T To all to whom these presents shall come, greeting:
No. —. [Description.—Age — years; stature — feet — inches, Eng.: forehead; eyes; nose; mouth; chin; hair; complexion; face. Signature of the bearer.] I, the undersigned, consul of the United States of America, hereby request all whom it may concern, to permit safely and freely to pass — , the bearer hereof, a citizen of the United States; and, in case of need, to give him all lawful aid and protection. Given under my hand and the seal of my consulate, [L. s.] at —, in the year of —, of the independence of the United States the
[cIRCULAR.] DEPARTMENT of STATE, fugust 8, 1815.
The consular uniform, prescribed in the standing consular instructions, is abolished, and the following substituted, viz. Single breast coat, of blue cloth, with standing cape or collar, and ten navy buttons in front; one button on each side of the cape; four on each cuff; four under each pocket flap; and one on each hip and in the folds; two on each side in the centre; and one on each side of the same, at the lower extremity of the skirts. The front, (from the cape down to the lower extremity of the skirts,) cuffs, cape, and pocket flaps, to be em. broidered in gold, representing a vine composed of olive leaves; and the button holes to be worked with gold thread; the button holes corresponding with the width of the embroidery, which is not to exceed two inches in any part. West and small clothes of white, and navy buttons; the former to have ten in front, and four under each pocket flap. With this dress, a cocked hat, small sword, and shoes and buckles, are to be worn. The hat to be furnished with gold loop, gold tassels, and black cockade, with gold eagle in the centre; added to which, it is to be understood that the mountings of the sword and shoe and knee buckles are to be of gold, otherwise gilt.
war of the United States, is to receive the first visit from such ship, in the person of an officer belonging to it, deputed and sent for that purpose by the commander; and this officer is then to tender to the consul a passage to the said ship. In such cases, you will accordingly avail yourself of the proposed accommodation whenever occasion may require, as well for the purposes of making the first visit to the commanding officer of the ship in question, (this being a mark of courtesy due to the commission and rank he holds in the navy of the United States,) as for that of offering to him any services which your official situation may enable you to render for the convenience of his ship, or those belonging to it; and you will accordingly receive and execute any such commissions as may be entrusted to you for these ends by him, as far as this may be compatible with your sense of public duty. According to the second and last, “it shall be the duty of the commander of any of our ships of war (commanders of squadrons excepted) to visit the consul general, and offer him a passage to the ship of war.” The consuls general of the United States, where there are such officers, will, accordingly, reciprocate these attentions on the part of the commanders of the ships of war, or will pay the first honors to the commanding officers of squadrons, as the case may be; and they will, of course, employ their good offices, as far as it may be useful or proper on their part, to promote the good and convenience of the service in which such vessels are engaged. I am, sir, respectfully, your obedient servant.
NAVY DEPARTMENT, June 23, 1830.
SIR: I have the honor to present, here with, a copy of the regulations of this department, prepared by the direction of the President, for the government of the commanders of our ships of war in their intercourse with the consuls of the United States residing in foreign ports. Should it meet your approbation, it will be communicated to the commanders of the national vessels of war; and I will be obliged to you, when convenient, for a copy of the corresponding regulations of the State Department to our consuls abroad. I am, very respectfully, sir, Your obedient servant, JNO. BRANCH. The Hon. MARTIN VAN BUREN, Secretary of State.
[c1RCULAR.] NAVY DEPARTMENT, June 22, 183'.
To promote harmony and concert of action between the commanders of our ships of war and consuls of the United States residing in foreign ports, the following regulations have been established by direction of the President of the United States, and are promulgated for the government of the officers concerned.
1. Upon entering a foreign port where a consul of the United States resides, the commander of any of our ships of war shall send a boat on shore with an officer on board, who shall visit the consul, and tender to him a passage to the ship of war.
2. Where a consul general resides, it shall be the duty of the commander of any of our ships of war (commanders of squadrons excepted) to visit the consul general, and offer him a passage to the ship of war.
3. The commander of a squadron will send a boat on shore, as prescribed in the first regulation, tendering to the consul or consul general a passage on board to the flag ship of war.
REDUCTION OF POSTAGE, &c.
Mr. GRUNDY, from the Committee on the Post Office and Post Roads, to which was referred the resolution of the Senate of the 2d instant, directing an inquiry “into the expediency of reducing and equalizing the rates of postage, and particularly of abolishing the postage on newspapers,” have had the same under consideration, and report:
That a majority of the committee, after the resolution was referred to them, determined, at their first meeting, that the transportation of the mail ought not to be made a charge upon the public treasury, and that the department should rely exclusively upon its own resources, except the expenditures in the General Post Office. They accordingly directed the chairman to address a letter to the Postmaster General, asking his opinion and views as to what could be done, consistently with the principle laid down by the committee. A copy of that letter, and the answer of the Postmaster General, accompany this report; and, from the facts disclosed in the letter, the committee are of opinion that there is no such sufficient cause of complaint against the rates of postage now imposed by law, as would justify any material reduction of them; especially when it is ascertained that such reduction would diminish mail accommodations, and thereby impair the usefulness of the department. The committee, therefore, recommend the adoption of the following resolution:
Resolved, That it is inexpedient, at this time, to pass any act reducing or changing the rates of postage.
SENATE CHAMBER, January 7, 1833. DEAR SIR: I have been directed by the Committee on the Post Office and Post Roads to transmit to you the enclosed resolutions of the Senate, and to ask your opinion and views in relation to the several subjects embraced in said resolutions. The committee have decided that the Post Office Department should rely exclusively upon its own resources for the transportation of the mail, and, of course, any reduction in the rates of postage should be made upon that principle, and not under the expectation that a deficiency would be supplied from the Treasury of the United States. Yours, with respect, FELIX GRUNDY. Hon. WILLIAM T. BARRY, Postmaster General.
Post OFFICE DEPARTMENT, January 19, 1833. SIR: In answer to your inquiry concerning my opinion and views in relation to the several subjects embraced in the resolution of the Senate passed the 2d instant, I have the honor to state: From the earliest period of our Government, when the circulating medium of the country was much more limited, and, consequently, its nominal value much greater than at present, there has been no essential variation in the price of postage, as will appear from the following statements. The law of February, 1792, fixed the rates thus: Postage on a single letter, for any distance not exceeding 30 miles, 6 cents. Exceeding 30 miles, and not exceeding 60 miles, 8 cts. 4. to 4
Newspaper postage continued as before, except that the postage was reduced to one cent, though conveyed more than 100 miles, if delivered in the same State in which it was printed. In 1825 the law was revised, but the rates of postage were confirmed, as above, in 1816. Under these circumstances, I was warranted in the conclusion that the rates of postage were so far settled as that no important difference in their aggregate amount was to be contemplated. An experience of forty years, without producing an opposite conviction in the public mind, was deemed sufficient to justify the conclusion that the principle was settled. On this principle all the existing contracts for transporting the mails have been predicated. A reduction of the rates will, of course, require a very important reduction in the mail facilities of the country. In relation to postage on newspapers, the consequence will be no less embarrassing. The expense of their transportation is very great, and their numbers are continually multiplying. It is an occurrence of almost every day, that more than a ton weight of newspapers is carried in one mail for hundreds of miles together, and at the rate of from eighty to upwards of a hundred miles a day; and if the postage on them shall be abolished, the number will be multiplied, and the expense of their transportation increased. It will probably be the means of superseding many of our village newspapers by supplying their place with papers from the cities, which will render it difficult to provide for their rapid transportation at any expense. The postages returned on newspapers for the year ending the 30th of June last, amounted to $254,796 64. If this sum shall be abstracted from the revenues of the department, and the same, or increased services still performed, it must be obvious that its present operations cannot be continued upon its own resources. The conveyance of letters by mail affords a considerable revenue, with but little weight to transport. That revenue is the principal support of the department. The conveyance of newspapers, by mail, gives a heavyweight to transport, with but a light revenue compared with their weight. If the revenue arising from letter postage shall be materially diminished, or if that arising from newspapers shall be abolished, it will be necessary so to abridge the mail facilities of the country, as that daily mails can
not be carried except between the principal commercial cities on the seaboard. The frequency and celerity of mail intercourse must almost every where be diminished; horse transportation must be substituted for that of mail coaches on many important routes, and distinct and more tardy methods must be adopted for transporting newspapers than letters. Such will be the inevitable consequences, unless provision shall be made to defray the expense from the treasury—a resort never solicited, never desired, and never given.
With these views, which are the result of certain calculation, the course which it will be most eligible to adopt, is respectfully submitted to the wisdom of the committee.
I have the honor to be,
Report from the Postmaster General, in compliance with a resolution of the Senate, relating to the expenses of transporting the Mail, and extra allowances made to contractors, &c. IN SENATE, February 21, 1833. Post OFFICE DEPARTMENT, 19th February, 1833.
SIR: In obedience to the resolution of the Senate, dated June 9, 1832, I have the honor to submit the following report: The resolution calls for a report of “the amount of expense of transporting the mail, and all the contingent and other expenses attending the post offices in each State, so far as the same can be ascertained, with the amount of extra allowances made to contractors since the 1st of January, 1830.” Not having received official information of the passage of the resolution, I was not apprised of its existence till some time after the commencement of the present session; when, being advised of it through the honorable mover of the resolution, the journals of the last session were searched, where it was, for the first time, discovered by me. This will account for the delay to furnish the answer. The accounts of postmasters, with their compensation, and the contingent expenses of their several offices, are kept in alphabetical order, and not separately, by States; and the separation of the various items of charge in the whole number of nine thousand accounts for each quarter of a year, amounting to about seventy thousand for the whole time embraced in the resolution, and exhibiting the amount in each State separately, would occupy a greater length of time than the period of any one session would admit, and an amount of labor far beyond what is allotted to the business of the department. The incidental expenses of the department consist principally in the disbursements made for mail bags, mail locks and keys, blanks for postmasters' accounts, post bills, wrapping paper for putting up mails, agencies, &c. The mail bags and locks are sent indiscriminately through all the States; and agencies are common to different States. Blanks are furnished to each postmaster according to the magnitude of his office, without any account of the exact expense of the amount sent to each. It is, therefore, not possible to specify the amount of expense in each State. In the transportation of the mail, a very considerable proportion of the routes run partly into one State and partly into another; and, in some instances, the same route runs into three or four different States. In these cases it is impossible to determine what proportion of the expense is incurred for the transportation in each State. Mail
routes also frequently pass through a State for the benefit of other States, rather than for the benefit of the State through which they pass. Such is the great mail route between Philadelphia and New York. It is placed under the head of New Jersey. Thirty miles of it are in the State of Pennsylvania, fifty-nine in New Jersey, and one mile in New York; yet it is principally for the benefit of the two cities, which constitute its extreme points; and more than five times the benefit of it results to New York above that of New Jersey. This principle is still more strikingly illustrated in the mail route between Mobile and New Orleans. It runs into the three States of Alabama, Mississippi, and Louisiana. More than half of the whole route is in Mississippi, and of course more than half its expense is incurred for transporting the mail in Mississippi; yet the State of Mississippi derives no immediate benefit from it, except the supply of the little isolated office of Pascagoula, which does not yield $100 a year nett revenue to the department. It must, therefore, be obvious that, if the exact amount expended for transporting the mail in each State could be given, it would but very imperfectly exhi. bit the amount of expenditure for the benefit of each State, or the comparative view of mail accommodation which each State enjoys. But another difficulty presents itself, which cannot well be obviated. It often happens, and in the most important mail routes, that one person or company contracts for a gross sum for carrying the mail on several routes lying in different States. In such cases there is no rule by which it can be ascertained what proportion of that sum is applicable to the transportation in each State. If the division should be estimated in the exact proportion to the number of miles travelled in each State, it would be exceedingly incorrect, because the transportation of the mail, owing to the difference of roads, the different degrees of weight and celerity, and the dif. ference in number of passengers, costs four times as much per mile on some routes as upon others in the same vi. cinity. o The mail routes in the United States are divided into foursections, viz. the northeastern, comprising the states of Maine, New Hampshire, Vermont, Massachusetts, Rhode Island, Connecticut, and New York; the middle, comprising the States of New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Dela. ware, Maryland, Ohio, and Kentucky, and the Territory of Michigan; the southern, comprising the States of Virginia, North Carolina, South Carolina, and Georgia, and the Territory of Florida; the southwestern, comprising the States of Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama, Tennessee, Missouri, Illinois, and Indiana, and the Territory of Ar. kansas. Without a greater amount of labor than can be given to it during the present session, the division of the expense for transportation cannot be made beyond that of the four divisions. . The amount of expense for transporting the mail from the 1st January, 1830, to the 1st January, 1832, was— For the northeastern section - - $640,024 29
For the middle section - - - 780,976 41 For the southern section - - - 701,476 68 For the southwestern section - - 469,776 16
The difference agreeing with the above statement of increase, is - - $74,828 63 The amount paid for compensation to postmasters, including the contingent expenses of their offices, from January 1, 1830, to January 1, 1832, was - $1,278,963 60 The incidental expenses of the department were, from January 1, 1830, to January 1, 1832 - - - 135,837 32 The foregoing statements exhibit the whole expenses of the department for the two years from January 1, 1830, to January 1, 1832, viz. For transportation of the mails Compensation to postmasters, includin the contingent expenses of their offices Incidental expenses - -
I have the honor to be, Very respectfully, sir, Your obedient servant, W. T. BARRY. To the honorable HUGh L. White, President of the Senate.
Message from the President of the United States, transmitting copies of the proclamation and proceedings in relation to South Carolina. IN SENATE, January 16, 1833.
Gentlemen of the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States: In my annual message, at the commencement of your present session, I adverted to the opposition to the revenue laws in a particular quarter of the United States, which threatened not merely to thwart their execution, but to endanger the integrity of the Union. And although I then expressed my reliance that it might be overcome by the prudence of the officers of the United States and the patriotism of the people, I stated that, should the emergency arise rendering the execution of the existing laws impracticable from any cause whatever, prompt notice should be given to Congress, with the suggestion of such views and measures as might be necessary to meet it. Events which have occurred in the quarter then alluded to, or which have come to my knowledge subsequently, present this emergency. Since the date of my last annual message, I have had officially transmitted to me by the Governor of South Carolina, which I now communicate to Congress, a copy of the ordinance passed by the convention which assembled at Columbia, in the State of South Carolina, in November last, declaring certain acts of Congress therein mentioned, within the limits of that State, to be absolutely null and void, and making it the duty of the Legislature