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ACTS OF THE FIFTH CONGRESS
Passed at the third session, which was begun and held at the City of
Philadelphia, in the state of Pennsylvania, on Monday, the third day
of December, 1798, and ended on the third day of March, 1799. John Adams, President; Thomas JeffERSON, Vice President of the
United States, and President of the Senate; James Ross, President of the Senate pro tempore, from March 2d, 1799; JONATHAN DayTON, Speaker of the House of Representatives.
ence the mea
Chapter 1.- An Act for the punishment of certain Crimes therein specified. Jan. 30, 1799. Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the
Penalty on a United States of America in Congress assembled, That if any person, citizen of the being a citizen of the United States, whether he be actually resident,
for holding coror abiding within the United States, or in any foreign country, shall, - respondence without the permission or authority of the government of the United with a foreign States, directly or indirectly, commence, or carry on, any verbal or writ- government or ten correspondence or intercourse with any foreign government, or any intent to influofficer or agent thereof, with an intent to influence the measures or conduct of any foreign government, or of any officer or agent thereof, in sures of such relation to any disputes or controversies with the United States, or defeat relation to disthe measures of the government of the United States; or if any person, putes or contro.
versies with the being a citizen of, or resident within the United States, and not duly
United States. authorized, shall counsel, advise, aid or assist in any such correspond- Aiders and ence, with intent, as aforesaid, he or they shall be deemed guilty of a abettors. high misdemeanor, and on conviction before any court of the United States having jurisdiction thereof, shall be punished by a fine not exceeding five thousand dollars, and by imprisonment during a term not less than six months, nor exceeding three years: Provided always, that Proviso. nothing in this act contained shall be construed to abridge the right of individual citizens of the United States to apply, by themselves, or their lawful agents, to any foreign government, or the agents thereof, for the redress of any injuries in relation to person or property which such individuals may have sustained from such government, or any of its agents, citizens or subjects.
APPROVED, January 30, 1799.
After 3d of
CHAP. II.-An Act further to suspend the Commercial Intercourse between the Feb. 9. 1799. United States and France, and the dependencies thereof.
[Expired.) Section 1. Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled, That from March, vessels and after the third day of March next, no ship or vessel owned, hired or not to go to
French ports ; employed, wholly, or in part, by any person resident within the United
nor to be em. States, and which shall depart therefrom, shall be allowed to proceed ployed in cer. directly, or from any intermediate port or place, to any port or place tain traffic. within the territory of the French Republic, or the dependencies thereof, 27, 1800, ch. 10. or to any place in the West Indies, or elsewhere, under the acknowledged government of France, or shall be employed in any traffic or
commerce with or for any person resident within the jurisdiction, or Vessels con- under the authority of the French Republic. And if any ship or vessel, travening to be in any voyage thereafter commencing, and before her return within the gether with their United States, shall be voluntarily carried or suffered to proceed to cargoes. any French port or place, as aforesaid, or shall be employed, as afore
said, contrary to the intent hereof, every such ship or vessel, together with her cargo, shall be forfeited; and shall accrue, the one half to the use of the United States, and the other half to the use of any person or persons, citizens of the United States, who will inform and prosecute for the same; and shall be liable to be seized, and may be prosecuted and condemned, in any circuit or district court of the United States, which shall be holden within or for the district where the seizure shall
be made. Bond to be Sec. 2. And be it further enacted, That from and after the passing given on clear. of this act, no clearance for a foreign voyage shall be granted to any ship ing for a foreign or vessel, owned, hired or employed, wholly or in part, by any person voyage.
resident within the United States, until a bond shall be given, to the use of the United States, wherein the owner or employer, if usually resident or present where the clearance shall be required, and otherwise his agent or factor, and the master or captain of such ship or vessel, for the intended voyage, shall be parties, in a sum equal to the value of the ship or vessel, and to one third of the value of her cargo, and shall find sufficient surety or sureties to the amount of one half of the principal suin, with condition that the same shall not, during her intended voyage, or before her return within the United States, proceed or be carried, directly or indirectly, to any port or place within the territory of the French Republic, or the dependencies thereof, or any place in the West Indies, or elsewhere, under the acknowledged government of France, unless by actual force and violence, to be fully proved and manifested before the acquittance of such bond, and that such vessel is not, and shall not be employed, during her intended voyage, or before her return, as
aforesaid, in any traffic or commerce, with or for any person resident Sureties not within the territory of that Republic, or in any of the dependencies to be answera. ble beyond
thereof: Provided, that in no case, the surety or sureties shall be answer$10,0co. able for more than ten thousand dollars. French ves
Sec. 3. And be it further enacted, That from and after the said third sels and certain day of March, no French ship or vessel, armed or unarmed, commisothers, not to be sioned by or for, or under the authority of the French Republic, or or remain with owned, fitted, hired or employed by any person resident within the terriin the U. States tory of that Republic, or any of the dependencies thereof, or sailing or except in the coming therefrom, (excepting as is herein after excepted) shall be alcase of distress.
lowed an entry, or to remain within the territory of the United States, unless driven thither by distress of weather, or in want of provisions. And if, contrary to the intent hereof, any such ship or vessel shall be found within the jurisdictional limits of the United States, not being liable to seizure for any other cause, the company having charge thereof, shall be required to depart and carry away the same, avoiding all unnecessary delay; and if they shall, notwithstanding, remain, it shall be the duty of the collector of the district wherein, or nearest to which, such ship or vessel shall be, to seize and detain the same, at the expense of the United States: Provided, that in the case of vessels hereby prohibited, which shall be driven by distress of weather, or want of provisions, into any port or place of the United States, they may be suffered to remain under the custody of the collector there, or nearest thereto, until suitable repairs or supplies can be obtained ; and as soon as may be thereafter, shall be required and suffered to depart; but no part of the lading of such vessel shall be taken out, or disposed of, unless by the
special permit of such collector, to defray the unavoidable expense of
President may the passing of this act, it shall be lawful for the President of the United order these reStates, if he shall deem it expedient and consistent with the interest of hibitions to be the United States, by his order, to remit and discontinue, for the time discontinued ; being, the restraints and prohibitions aforesaid, either with respect to and again re
voke such or. the French Republic, or to any island, port or place belonging to the said Republic, with which a commercial intercourse may safely be renewed ; and also to revoke such order, whenever, in his opinion, the interest of the United States shall require; and he shall be, and hereby is authorized to make proclamation thereof accordingly.
Sec. 5. And be it further enacted, That it shall be lawful for the Pre- He may insident of the United States, to give instructions to the commanders of struct the public the public armed ships of the United States, to stop and examine any stop and examship or vessel of the United States on the high sea, which there may be ine suspected reason to suspect to be engaged in any traffic or commerce contrary to vessels, and
send them into the true tenor hereof; and if, upon examination, it shall appear
port. such ship or vessel is bound or sailing to any port or place within the territory of the French Republic, or her dependencies, contrary to the intent of this act, it shall be the duty of the commander of such public armed vessel, to seize every ship or vessel engaged in such illicit commerce, and send the same to the nearest port in the United States; and every such ship or vessel, thus bound or sailing to any such port or place, shall, upon due proof thereof, be liable to the like penalties and forfeitures, as are provided in and by the first section of this act.
Sec. 6. And be it further enacted, That whenever any ship or vessel, Mode of ob. owned wholly or in part, or employed by any citizen or citizens of the taining relief in
certain cases of United States, and coming from any port or place within the territory
seizure under of the French Republic, or the dependencies thereof, which has arrived this and the within any port or place of the United States since the first day of De- former act. cember last past, or which shall hereafter arrive, hath been or hereafter shall be seized and detained by virtue of this act, or of an act, intituled “An act to suspend the commercial intercourse between the United States and France, and the dependencies thereof,” it shall be lawful for any person claiming such ship or vessel, to prefer his petition to the judge of the district in which such seizure shall be made, setting forth the circumstances of his case, and to pray that the same ship or vessel, and her cargo, may be restored; and the said judge shall thereupon inquire, in a summary manner, into the circumstances of the case, first causing reasonable notice to be given to the attorney of the United States for such district, and to the collector of the district by whom such seizure or detention hath been or shall be made, that each may have an opportunity of showing cause against the prayer of such petition ; and shall cause the facts which shall appear upon such inquiry, to be stated and annexed to the petition, and direct their transmission to the Secretary of the Treasury; and if it shall appear to his satisfaction, that such ship or vessel was captured or driven into such port or place by distress of weather, or want of provisions, or was unavoidably detained and delayed by some embargo, arrest, capture, contrary winds, or other unavoidable casualty, without any fault, wilful negligence, or intention to evade the provisions of the act before mentioned, or of this act, in any such claimant, the Secretary of the Treasury shall order the restoration of said vessel and cargo to such claimant, upon such terms and conditions as he may deem reasonable and just; otherwise, and in all cases wherein such petition shall not be presented, every ship or vessel that has arrived since the said first day of December, from any port or place in the French Republic, or the dependencies thereof, or which shall hereafter arrive within any port or place of the United States, unless driven by stress of
President may grant permis. sion to enter or clear in special cases.
'weather or want of provisions, shall be liable to be prosecuted and condemned in the same manner and to the same uses as are provided in and by the first section of this act; and like proceedings shall also be had and like forfeitures incurred, as are herein provided with respect to vessels coming from France, and the dependencies thereof, in all cases when any ship or vessel shall arrive in any port or place of the United States, from any port or place, with which all commercial intercourse shall be prohibited by proclamation, according to the intent of this act.
Sec. 7. Provided, and be it further enacted, That nothing in this act contained shall extend to any ship or vessel to which the President of the United States shall grant a permission to enter or to clear; which permission he is hereby authorized to grant to vessels which shall be solely employed in any purpose of political or national intercourse, or to aid the departure of any French persons, with their goods and effects, who shall have been resident within the United States, when he may think requisite.
Sec. 8. And be it further enacted, That this act shall continue and be in force until the third day of March, in the year one thousand eight hundred.
APPROVED, February 9, 1799.
Limitation of this act.
Feb. 15, 1799. CHAP. III.-An Act respecting Balances reported against certain States, by the
Commissioners appointed to settle the Accounts between the United States and the [Expired.]
several States. Debtor states Section 1. Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives assuming to pay of the United States of America in Congress assembled, That if any or to expend in fortifications a state, against which a balance was reported by the commissioners sum in money appointed to settle the accounts between the United States and the or in stock, equal to their
several states, shall, on or before the first day of April, one thousand debts, may ob. eight hundred, by a legislative act, engage to pay into the treasury of tain a discharge, the United States within five years after passing such legislative act, or &c.
to expend, within the time last mentioned, in erecting, enlarging or Anle, p. 49. completing any fortifications for the defence of the United States at
such place or places the jurisdiction whereof, having been, previously to such expenditure, ceded by such state to the United States, with reservation that process civil and criminal issuing under authority of such state, may be served and executed therein, and according to such plan or plans as shall be approved by the President of the United States, a sum in money, or in stock of the United States, equal to the balance reported as aforesaid, against such state, or to the sum assumed by the United States in the debt of such state, such payment or expenditure, when so made, shall be accepted by the United States as a full discharge
of all demands on account of said balance; and the President of the Ante, p. 554. United States shall be, and hereby is authorized to cause credit to be
Limitation of given to such state on the books of the treasury of the United States the descriptions accordingly: Provided however, that no more than one third part of of stock to be the whole payment or expenditure that may be made by any such state
shall be made in three per cent stock, nor more than one third part of Such state may the remaining two thirds shall be made in deferred stock: And provided charge by the also, that any such state may obtain a full discharge, as aforesaid, by payment or ex- the payment or expenditure of a sum of money, sufficient in the opinion penditure of a of the Secretary of the Treasury, to purchase, at market price, the sum of money, different species of stock, the payment or expenditure of which would Provision in.
be accepted as a full discharge, as aforesaid. cluding expend.
Sec. 2. Provided always, and be it further enacted, That if any itures on fortifi- such state as is aforesaid shall have expended, since the establishment of cations before their cession to
the present government of the United States, any sum of money in the U. States. fortifying any place since ceded by such state to the United States, or
be so ceded, within one year after the passing of this act, such expenditure having
been ascertained and proved to the satisfaction of the Secretary of the Treasury, shall be taken and allowed as part of the expenditure intended by this act.
APPROVED, February 15, 1799.
Feb. 19, 1799.
Chap. VI.-An Act to authorize the reimbursement of monies expended in ren
dering aid to sick and destilute American Seamen, in foreign countries. Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled, That the Secretary of State be, and hereby is authorized, under the direction of the President of the United States, to reimburse such reasonable advances of money, as have been made, or, during the present year, may be made, by the - consuls of the United States, in affording relief to sick and destitute American seamen, in foreign countries, or in aiding them to return to their homes, beyond the sum allowed by law for that purpose.
APPROVED, February 19, 1799.
answer on that
CHAP. VIII.—An Act to amend an act entitled “An act giving effect to the Laws Feb. 19, 1799. of the United States within the district of Tennessee.”
[Obsolete.) Section 1. Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives Offenders to of the United States of America in Congress assembled, That any per
side of Cumberson who shall commit an offence against the laws of the United States, land mountain, on the east side of Cumberland mountain, within the district of Ten- where their of? nessee, shall not be held to answer at the court at Nashville, or any other fences were
committed. place, on the west side of said mountain, and that any person who shall commit an offence against the laws of the United States on the west side
Ante, p. 496.
Act of April of said mountain, within the said district, shall not be held to answer, at 29, 1802, ch. 31, the court at Knoxville, or any other place, upon the east side of said sec. 16. mountain, but that all persons who shall commit offences against the laws of the United States (within the said district) shall be held to answer in the court on that side of the said mountain, where such offence shall have been committed.
Sec. 2. And be it further enacted, That any suits which shall be Suits by the brought by the United States, in the district court of Tennessee, against United States any person residing on the east side of said mountain, shall not be to be returned returned to the court at Nashville, on the west side of the said moun- that side of the tain, and that any suits which shall be brought by the United States, mountain where
the defendants against any person residing upon the west side of said mountain, shall
are found. not be returned to the court at Knoxville, on the east side of the said mountain. But that all suits which shall be brought by the United States against any person or persons residing on the respective sides of the said mountain, shall be returned to the court, on that side of the said mountain, where the defendant or defendants shall reside, or be found at the time of bringing such suit or suits. Sec. 3. And be it further enacted, That the western foot of Cum- Western foot
of Cumberland berland mountain shall be the boundary, dividing the jurisdiction of the
mountain to be eastern from the western side of said mountain.
the boundary. Sec. 4. And be it further enacted, That all suits which may be Suits to be brought as aforesaid, shall be proceeded upon to final judgment in the proceeded upon court wherein such suit or suits shall have been originally returned, and to final judgit shall be the duty of the clerk for the district of Tennessee, to keep court to which two separate dockets, for the purposes aforesaid—one for the court at they are return. Nashville, and one for the court at Knoxville—Provided, that nothing ed, &c.
No restriction in this act shall be so construed, as to prevent writs of execution issued as to executions. from either of the said courts, being executed on the person or property Vol. 1.-78