United States. Congress.

Abridgment of the Debates of Congress, from 1789 to 1856. From Gales and Seatons' Annals of Congress; from their Register of debates; and from the official reported debates, by John C. Rives online

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Online LibraryUnited States. CongressAbridgment of the Debates of Congress, from 1789 to 1856. From Gales and Seatons' Annals of Congress; from their Register of debates; and from the official reported debates, by John C. Rives → online text (page 113 of 199)
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objection to the discharge, as legislation on this
subject can be delayed, without material preju-
dice to any interest, until the regular session.
I shall look for a bill then, either with or
without the inclusion of other classes; and
shall consider the decision upon that biU as
settling the question of the rights of the people,
and the supremacy of their Government, on
one hand, and of the pretensions of the banks,
and their permanent supremacy over laws,
Governments, constitutions, and the people, on
the other.

Mr. Crittenden replied to Mr. Benton, argu-
ing against the constitutionality and policy of
the proposed partial bankrupt law, and com-
menting on the nature and causes of the present
distressed condition of the country.

The motion to discharge the committee lies
over one day.



Feidat, October 13.
President of the Senate pro tern.

The ViOE President having, at the close of
yesterday's sitting, stated to the Senate that he
should not resume the chair during the present
session,

The Senate proceeded to the election, by bal-
lot, of a President pro tern.

Mr. King, of Alabama, having received nearly
all the votes which were given, was declared
duly elected President of the Senate pro tern.

Mr. King, on taking the chair, briefly returned
his thanks to the Senate for the distinguished
honor conferred upon him. It had often been
his fortune to be elected by the voice of the
people to distinguished offices, but this election
conferred more honor, as coming from so ele-
vated a body. The favor of the people was
often obtained without merit, and as often lost
without fault. Not so was it with this high



DEBATES OF CONGRESS.



459



October, 1837.]



Adjournment,



[Senate.



evidence of tlie approbation of the Senate, for
which he returned hia thanks. It should he
his aim and endeavor to discharge the duties
imposed upon him in a manner satisfactory to
the Senate, and with perfect impartiality to
every Senator.

Law of Banlcruptey.

The Senate resumed the consideration of the
motion of Mr.' Getindt to discharge the Judi-
ciary Committee from the further consideration
of that part of the President's Message relating
to a bankrupt law.

Mr. SoTJTHAED spoke with much earnestness
against the Executive recommendation, and
against the constitutionality and expediency of
any bankrupt law, except in relation to mer-
chants and traders, and for the exclusive purpose
of preventing fraud, and an inequitable distribu-
tion of the property of bankrupts; dwelling
at times on the present condition of the coun-
try, the causes which led to it, and the pros-
pective designs of the administration.

The question on discharging the committee
was agreed to.



Monday, October 16
Adjournment.
On motion of Mr. Noevell, it was
Ordered, That a committee from the Senate be



appointed to join a committee from the House to in-
form the President of the United States that the two
Houses had completed the business before them, and
were ready to adjourn.

Messrs. Geundt, Clat of Alabama, and
NoEVELL, were appointed said committee on
the part of the Senate.

Mr. Kent offered a resolution granting to the
Chaplain of the Senate the same compensation
for this extra session as the House had voted
to its Chaplain.

The resolution was adopted.

On motion of Mr. Clat, of Alabama, the
Secretary of the Senate was ordered to inform
the House that the Senate, having iinished the
business before it, was now ready to adjourn.

Mr. NoEVELL, from the joint committee ap-
pointed to wait upon the President of the
United States, informed the Senate that said
committee, having waited upon the President,
had been informed by him that he had no
farther communication to make the two Houses,
and that the President wished the members,
individually and collectively, health and pros-
perity.

A message was received from the House of
Representatives by Mr. Peanklin, their clerk,
that the House was ready to adjourn.

Whereupon, on motion of Mr. Niles, the
Senate adjourned sine die.



460



ABKIDGMENT OF THE



H. OF E.]



Median of Speaker,



[Septembek, 1837.



TWENTY-FIFTH CONGRESS -EXTRA SESSION.



PKOCEEDINGS AND DEBATES



THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES.*



Monday, September 4, 1837.
At twelve o'clock, the House of Kepresenta-
tives was called to order by Mr. Feanelin, the
Clerk of the last Congress, who read the Presi-
dent's proclamation convening the present ses-
sion of Congress. He then proceeded to call



* LIST OF MEMBERS,

3l(vine>. — George Evans, Jolm Fairfield, Timotliy J. Car-
ter, F. O. J. Smith, Thomas Bavee, Jonathan Cilley, Joseph
0. Noyes, Hugh. J. Anderson.

Hew Ma/rnpshire. — Samuel Cushman, James Farrington,
Charles J. Atherton, Joseph, Weeks, Jared "W. Williams.

Ifaesaclntsetts. — Richard Fletcher, Stephen C. Phillips,
Caleb Gushing, William Parmenter, Levi Lincoln, George
Grennell, George N. Briggs, William B. Calhoun, Nathaniel

B. Borden, John Q. Adams, John Eeed, William S. Has-
tings.

Rhode Inland. — J. L. Tillinghast, Robert B. Cranston.

Connecticut. — Isaac Toucey, Samuel Ingham, Ellsha Ha-
ley, Thomas T. Whittlesey, Launcelot Phelps, Orin Holt.

Vennont — Hiland Hall, William Blade, Hemau Allen,
Isaac Fletcher, Horace Everett.

2^&vo York. — ^Thomas B. Jackson, Abraham Tanderveer,

C. C. Cambreleng, Ely Moore, Edward Curtis, Ogden Hoff-
man, Govemeur Kemble, Obadiah Titus, Nathaniel Jones,
John 0. Brodhead, Zadock Pratt, Robert M'Clellan, Henry
Tail, Albert Gallup, John I. De Graff, David Russell, John
Palmer, James B. Spencer, John Edwards, Arphasad Loo-
mis, Henry A. Foster, Abraham P. Grant, Isaac H. Bronson,
John H. Prentiss, Amasa J. Parker, John C. Clark, Andrew

D. W. Bruyn, Hiram Gray, William Taylor, Bennett Bick-
nell, William H. Noble, Samuel Birdsall, Mark H. Sibley,
John T. Andrews, Timothy Childs, William Patterson,
Luther C. Peck, Richard P. Marvin, Millard Fillmore,
Charles P. Mitchell

2Tmo Jer86y. — John B. Aycrigg, John P. B. Maxwell,
William ITalsted, Joseph F. Randolph, Charles C. Stratton,
Thomas Jones Yorko.

PertftSj/^cwiict.— Lemuel Painter, John Sergeant, George
W. Toland, Charles Naylor, Eward Davies, Bavid Potts, jr.,
Edward Darlington, Jacob Fry, jr., Matthias Morris, David



the names of the members from a roll made np'
by himself in the usual manner.

Election of Speaker.
The House proceeded to the election of a
Speaker. Messes. Hamee, MoKjennacj, and



D. "Wagoner, Edward B. Hubley, Henry A. Muhlenberg,
Luther Reily, Henry Logan, Dan. Sheffer, Charles M'Clure,
William W. Potter, David Petrikin, Robert H. Hammond,
Samuel W. Morris, Charles Ogle, John Klingensmith, An-
drew Buchanan, T. M. T. McKennon, Richard Biddle, Wm.
Beatty, Thomas Henry, Arnold Plumer.

Delaware. — John J. Milligan.

Maryland. — John Dennis, James A. Pearce, J. T. H.
Worthington, Benjamin C. Howard, Isaac McKim, Wm. C.
Johnson, Francis Thomas, Daniel Jenifer.

Virginia.— ^QUTj A. Wise, Francis Mallory, John Robert-
son, Charles F. Mercer, John Taliaferro, E. M. T. Hunter,
James Garland, Francis E. Eives, Walter Coles, George C.
Dromgoole, James W. Bouldin, John M. Patton, James M.
Mason, Isaac S. Pennybacker, Andrew Beirne, Archibald
Stuart, John W. Jones, Robert Craig, George W. Hopkins,
Josepb Johnson, William S. Morgan.

North Carolina. — Jesse A. Bynum, Edward D. Stanley,
Charles Shepard, James McKay, M. T. Hawkins, Edmund
Deberry, Wm. Montgomery, Aug. H. Shepperd, Abraham
Rencher, Henry Conner, James Graham, Lewis Williams,
Samuel T. Sawyer.

South Carolina.— Tl. S. Legare, Waddy Thompson, John
K. Griffin, R. Barnwell Rhett, Francis W. Pickens, W. K.
Clowney, F. H. Elmore, John Campbell, John P. Richard-
son.

Georgia.— Thomas Glascock, J. F. Cleveland, Seaton
Grantland, Charles E. Haynes, Hopkins Holsey, Jabez Jack-
son, George W. Owens, George W. B. Townes, W. C. Daw-
son.

3ri88i88ippi.—Jo)m F. H. Claiborne, S. J. Gholson.

Kentucky. - -John L. Murray, Edward Eumsey, J. E. Un-
derwood, Sherrod Williams, James Harlan, John Calhoon,
John Pope, Wm. J. Graves, John White, Richard Hawes,

E. A. Menifee, John Chambers, W. W. Southgate.
Tmnessee.—'Wm. B. Carter, A. McClellan, Jos. L. Wil-



DEBATES OF CONGRESS.



461



September, 1837.]



Death of Mr. Standefer.



[H. OF E.



Jones, of Virginia, were appointed tellers ; and
reported tlie result as follows :

Total numter of votes 224 ; necessary to a
choice - - 113

For James K. Polk - 116

John Bell - - - 103

Scattering - - - 5

So James K. Polk was declared to have been
duly elected Speaker. He was conducted to
the chair by Messrs. Lawlek and Owens, when
he made a brief address of thanks, and was
then sworn in by Mr. Lewis Wiluams, the
senior member of the House.

The House then proceeded to ballot for a
Clerk, when Walter S. Feanklin received
146 votes, Samuel Shook, of Pennsylvania,
48, and 15 votes were cast for other persons.

So Walter S. Feanklin- was declared "duly
chosen Clerk.

On motion of Mr. WiLLLiMS, of JTorth Caro-
lina, Messrs. Caee and HnNTEE were appointed
doorkeepers to the House.

On motion of Mr. Connoe, Roderick Dorsey
was appointed sergeant-at-arms.

On motion of Mr. Garland, of Virginia, a
committee of three was appointed on the part
of the House to join the committee on the part
of the Senate to wait on the President of the
United States, and inform him that a quorum
of the two Houses was assembled, and that
Congress was ready to receive any communica-
tion he may be pleased to make.



Tuesday, September S.

Mr. Garland of Virginia, from the Select
Joint Committee appointed to wait on the
President of the United States, and inform him
that the two Houses of Congress were organ-
ized, reported that they had performed that
duty, and that the President would transmit a
Message to them in writing that day at 12
o'clock.

A Message in writing was received from the
President of the United States by the hands
of his private secretary, Abraham Van Buren,
Esq. (See Senate proceedings.)

Printer to the Souse.

On motion of Mr. Patton, of Virginia, the
House then proceeded to ballot for a printer to
the House.

On the twelfth ballot Thomas Allen was
elected.



Hams, II. L. Tarnor, 'Win. B. Campbell, Jolin Bell, A.
P. Maary, James K. Polk, Eben. J. Shields, Kichard Cheat-
ham, John W. Crockett, Christopher II. 'Williams, "William
Stono.

Ohio.— Mux. Duncan, Taylor Webster, Patrick G. Goode,
Thomas Oorwin, Thomas L. Hamer, Calvary Morris, Wm.
Key Bond, J. Eldgway, John Chaney, Sampson Mason,
J. Alexander, jr., Alex. Harper, D. P. Leadbetter, Wm. H
Hunter, John W. Allen, Elisha Whittlesey, Andrew Loomls,
Mathlas Shlpler, Daniel Kilgore.



Feidat, September 8.

Death of Mr. Standefer.

Mr. Bell announced to the House the death
of his late colleague, the Hon. James Stan-
defer, in the following terms :

Mr. Speaker : The melancholy duty has been
assigned me, by my colleagues, of announcing
to the House the death of one of our mem-
bers.

James Standbfee, while on his journey to
this place, in order to enter upon his duties as
a member of this House, was, on the 20th of
last month, suddenly arrested by the hand of
the Great Destroyer of human existence. _ By
this unexpected event, the country is deprived,
at a period of more than common interest and
difficulty, of the services of a most devoted and
patriotic public servant, and this House of an
honest and worthy member. My late colleague
was remarkable for an equanimity of temper,
and a kindness of feeling, combined with a
justness of perception in all the concerns of
life, at least of ordinary occurrence, which,
without the advantages of early culture, or of
books, at any time, procured for him through-
out a life which was not short, the respect and
esteem of numerous friends, and raised him to
the rank of a useful and meritorious citizen.
The same qualities of heart and mind, aided by
a reputation for honesty which he nobly earn-
ed, and continued to maintain by the most
scrupulous regard for truth and justice in all
his transactions, public and private, caused him
to be repeatedly chosen to the Legislature of
his own State ; of which body he was a useful
and respected member. He waSy for many
years, a member of this, and I am sure that
his quiet and unobtrusive manners — his punc-
tual discharge of all the duties assigned him,
in the organization of the House, must have
secured the respect of his associates. To' these
evidences of his worth, I might add, that in the
late war with Great Britain, he approved him-
self an intrepid soldier. He was, above most
men I have known, who have risen in any de-
gree into public view, under similar circum-
stances, free from the pride and vanity of mere
station ; never anxious to appear what he was
not ; content to be classed with the useful and
faithful, he made no pretensions; had no as-
pirations beyond his real deserts. If, therefore,
my lamented colleague cannot be said to have
possessed any of those shining endowments
which are required to make a figure in this

Louisiana. — Henry Johnson, Eleazar W. Eipley, Eice
Garland,

Indiana.— 'S.Mm Boon, John Ewing, William Graham,
Geo. II. Dunn, Jas. Eariden, Wm. Herrod, Albert 3. White.

Illinois.— X. W. Snyder, Zadock Case)-, William L. May.

jlZaftonia.— Dixon H. Dewis, Francis S. Lyon, Eeuben
Chapman, Joab Lawler, Joshua L. Martin.

jlfissoari.— Albert G. Harrison, John Miller.

^riojwos.— Archibald Tell.

Michigan.— IsatK E. Crary.



462



ABEIDGMENT OF THE



H. OP K.]



SuAnessfoT the Session — Fourth Instalment Bill.



[Septembek, 1837.



House, whioli strike our fancy, or command our
admiration, he might still justly lay claim to
other and humhler attributes, which, upon the
whole, constitute a character of solid merit, and
often one of more enduring fame ; and that the
due and usual tribute of respect be paid to his
memory, by this House, I move you, sir, the
resolution which I hold in my hand :

Resolved, That as a testimony of respect for the
memory of the deceased, the members of this House
will go into mourning by wearing crape on the left
arm for thirty days.

The resolution was unanimously adopted.
Mr. Bell then moved that the House ad-
journ.
And it adjourned accordingly.



MoNDAV, September 11.
Payment of Specie to Members of Congress.

The resolution offered on Thursday last by
Mr. BiDDLE, of Pennsylvania, and lying on the
Speaker's table, having been again read as fol-
lows :

" Resolved, That the Secretary of the Treasury re-
port to this House whether a letter, purporting to be
addressed by him to the Clerk of the House of Rep-
resentatives, offering payment in specie to members
of Congress, is authentic ; if so, to what other claim-
ants on the Treasury a similar offer has been made,
and what principle of discrimination, if any, has been
adopted in the medium of payment to the public
creditors."

The resolution, as modified, was agreed to.

Mr. Bell, of Tennessee, offered the following
resolution; which lies for consideration one
day:

Resolved, That the Secretary of the Treasury be
directed, with as Uttle delay as possible, to communi-
cate to this House the amount of the appropriations
of the past and present year remaining unexpended :
the amount required to fulfil all existing engagements
contracted prior to the 1st day of June last, and all
existing engfigements contracted since that time.
Also, the amount of moneys drawn from the Treas-
ury and placed in the hands of disbursing ofilcers or
agents on the 1st day of May last, and at the present
time. And that he also report what objects of public
expenditure can, with the least injury to the public
service, be cither wholly dispensed with during the
present year, or have any material reduction.

Reference of the Message and Report.

On motion of Mr. Oambeelenq, the Message
of the President to Congress was then taken
•up, and referred to a Committee of the Whole
on the state of the Union ; and the House went
thereon into committee, Mr. J. Q. Adams in the
chair.

Mr. OAMBEELEua introduced two resolutions,
as follows :

1. Resolved, That so much of the President's Mes-
sage as relates to the finances of the country, bo re-
ferred to the Committee of Ways and Means.

2. Resolved, That so much of the President's Mes-



sage as relates to a bankrupt law, be referred to the
Committee on the Judiciary.

The resolutions were severally agreed to;
the committee rose and reported them to the
House, and they were concurred in.

Mr. Cambeeleng submitted the following
resolution, which was agreed to :

Resolved, That so much of the report of the Secre-
tary of the Treasury on the state of the finances, as
relates to the finances of the country, be referred to
the Committee of Ways and Means ; and that so
much of said report as relates to a bankrupt law be
referred to the Committee on the Judiciary.

Business for the Session.

Mr. P. 0. J. Smith, of Maine, said that he
wished to ascertain the sense of the House as
to what was to be the business of the session
before it ; and asked leave to introduce a reso-
lution. Leave was given, and the following
resolution was introduced :

" Resolved, That the action of the several standing
committees of this House, on all matters not em-
braced by the Message of the President of the United
States to the two Houses of Congress, communicated
on the second day of the current session, be sus-
pended until the commencement of the aimual ses-
sion of Congress in December next, and that the
consideration of all petitions on such suspended mat-
ters be also postponed to the period above specified."'

Mr. Williams, of IN'orth Carolina, moved to
postpone the resolution until Wednesday.

[After a debate, in which Messrs. Smith, Whit-
tlesey, Bell, Cambreleng, and Wise, took a part,]

The motion to postpone was rejected.

Mr. Gaeland, of Virginia, moved to rescind
the resolution, Ijy inserting " with the excep-
tion of private business." There was no rea-
son, he said, why the private bills which had
been hanging here for years, should not be act-
ed on, in the intervals of time, when the House
was not otherwise employed. The amendment
was lost.

The original resolution was agreed to.



Tuesday, September 12.
Fourth Instalment Bill.
Mr. Cambeelkng, on leave, from the Com-
mittee of Ways and Means, reported the follow-
ing bill :

A bill to postpone the fourth instalment of deposit
with the States.

Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Repre-
sentatives of tJie ilnited States of America in Con-
gress assembled. That the transfer of the fourth in-
stalment of the deposits directed to be made with
the States under the thirteenth section of the act
of June 23, 1836, be, and the same is hereby,
postponed until further provision by law.

Mr. Cambeeleng would merely mention for
the information of the House, that that was ttie
only bill the committee could agree upon at this
morning's session. There would, probably, be



DEBATES OF CONGRESS.



463



Septejibeb, 1837.]



The United States, Mexico, and Texas.



[H. OF E.



two other bills requiring the most urgent action
of the House to-morrow morning.

The above hill was referred to a Committee
of the Whole on the state of the Union.

Election of Chaplain.

The House then, on motion of Mr. Gabland,
of Virginia, went into the election of a Chap-
lain.

On the second ballot, Eev. Mr. Tuston re-
ceived 135 votes, which being a majority of
the whole, he was declared duly elected Chap-
lain to the House.



Wednesday, September 13.
Order of Business.

The Speaker stated that, having considered
the extent of the resolution adopted by the
House on Monday, touching the course of its
business, and compared it with the 16th rule
of order, which requires the calling for peti-
tions, he had been constrained to come to the
conclusion that it was his duty, under that rule,
to call the House, by States, for petitions ; but
that, if any should be presented which had no
immediate relation to the special subjects re-
commended in the President's Message to the
attention of Congress, at its present session, the
House could enter into no action concerning
them, but that they must, as of course, lie on
the table until the period of the regular session
on the first Monday of December next.

Under this decision, the States were there-
upon called on for petitions, and a very few
were presented, which had no reference to the
currency ; while a number were offered which
did relate to that subject, and the prayer of
which was either in favor of, or adverse to, the
establishment of a national bank ; and which
were referred to the Committee of Ways and
Means ; several of them were ordered to be
printed.

Proposed Issue of Treasury Notes.

Mr. Cambheleng, from the Committee of
Ways and Means, reported a bill to authorize
the issuing of Treasury notes.

The bill was read twice, and referred to the
Committee of the Whole on the state of the
Union.

The United States, Mexico, and Texas.

•The following resolution, moved yesterday
by Mr. Adams, was read, viz ;

Jicsolned, That the President of the United States
be requested to communicate to this House, so far as
may bo consistent with the public interest, all the
correspondence between the Government of the
United States and that of Mexico, concerning the
boundary between them, and particularly concerning
any proposition for a cession of territory belonging
to the Mexican confederation to the United States ;
and also all correspondence relating thereto between
the Department of State and the diplomatic represent-
atives of the United States in Mexico, and of the



said Department with those of the Mexican Republic,
accredited to the Government of the United States.

Mr. Adams observed that, as this was merely
a call for information, if no opposition should
be made to its adoption, he should content him-
self with simply asking a vote of the House
upon it, without accompanying it with any re-
marks.

Mr. HowAED (chairman of the Committee on
Foreign Relations) said that, if the gentleman
from Massachusetts wished for this correspond-
ence merely that it might be printed and thrown
before the House and the country, he should
make no opposition to the call ; but if it was
his intention to move for its reference to a
committee, in violation of the plan which had
been chalked out by the House for the course
of its business at tlie present session, he should
certainly oppose the adoption of the resolution.
In the meanwhile, he hoped to be permitted
to add a word or two in reference to the first
of the resolutions. He would suggest whether
the House, by merely passing a silent vote
adopting the resolution, might not find itself to
have estabUshed a precedent which might
hereafter prove very inconvenient. He did not
exactly comprehend what the object of the
honorable gentleman could be in going back to
the old question of our Mexican boundary, now
that an intermediate province had been inter-
posed between ns and Mexico. No doubt the
gentleman had good reasons, which would ap-
pear in due time.

Mr. Adams said it was not his intention to
bring the subject of our relations with Mexico
into discussion at this time ; but merely to ob-
tain the information called for in the resolution,
and have it printed for the use of the House and
of the nation.

The resolution was, without debate, agreed
to.

The following resolution, also moved yester-
day by Mr. Adams, was read, viz :

Resolved, That the President of the United States
be requested to communicate to this House whether
any proposition has been made on the part of the
Republic of Texas to the Government of the United
States for the annexation of the said Republic of
Texas to this Union, and if such proposition has
been made, what answer has been returned, and all
correspondence which has taken place relating there-
to.

Mr. Wise said he should vote against the
resolution ; his reason was that he was in pos-
session of information from a high source, and
on which he could explicitly, positively rely,
that the correspondence referred to was not in
a condition to be made public, and that it might
be injurious to the public interest should it now
be disclosed.

Mr. Haynes suggested to the nxover to modify
his resolution by the annexation of the ordinary
qualifying clause, " if the communication of the
same shall, in his opinion, be consistent with
the public interest;"



Online LibraryUnited States. CongressAbridgment of the Debates of Congress, from 1789 to 1856. From Gales and Seatons' Annals of Congress; from their Register of debates; and from the official reported debates, by John C. Rives → online text (page 113 of 199)