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JUNE 21, 1834.]
General Appropriation Bill.
priation of $15,000, to remunerate Clarke and Force pense cannot exceed $300,000; and that will only be refor all expenses incurred by tbem hitherto, under said quired by small annual appropriations. It was indispencontract.
sable that this should be done by the Government, as no Mr. FORSYTH said he had been induced to submit private means would be found competent. The works this amendment, under a sense of justice both to the con- ordered by the British Government to be printed, were tractors and to the United States. He believed, with the not of equal importance to this work, which has been unCommittee on Finance, who had examined into this sub- dertaken, and in which expenses have been incurred by the ject, that the Secretary of State had far exceeded his contractors, on the faith of the Government. He wished authority in entering into this contract, and had not only that the present appropriation should be passed, and that mistaken the law, but had not the slightest idea of the Congress should act hereafter as the execution of the expense to be incurred under it. There was, in fact, no work might justify. knowing to what extent the contract, as originally made, Mr. FRELINGHUYSEN considered that, as this was not might be extended. It might run from one up to two an original question, but that it was a contract sanctioned millions of dollars. It was true, the contractors had en- by law, and executed by a very distinguished officer of tered into supplementary stipulations with the committee, our Government, who was entitled to respect and confiwhich would bring down the expense to somewhere about dence, the least that could be asked was to make the ex400,000 dollars. There was no member of Congress, he periment. The first volume was now ready for the press. believed, who ever contemplated any thing like such an This work had been under the consideration of the Com. expense at the time the law was passed. Fifteen thou- mittee on the Library two or tbree times, and there was sand dollars, it was believed, would be sufficient to in- but one opinion concerning its value. The work was of demnify the contractors for any expenses they had hith- high importance; and if he had to select between 309,000 erto incurred; but, if it should be found at the next ses dollars and twenty volumes of this work, he should not sion of Congress that they had incurred a further damage, hesitate between them. Very proper reference had been it would no doubt be awarded to them. It was proposed made to a great work printed by the British Government, to have the subject further examined into during the re- cvery set of which cost two hundred pounds sterling. Á cess, and either to rescind the contract, giving such addi- set of that work had been sent to the Congress library, tional compensation as might be deemed just and proper, and an agent been instructed to send over to England the or to carry it on with suitable restrictions.
names of the colleges in this country, and twenty-four Mr. CHAMBERS said the subject of the contract did names bad already be: n sent over, to each of which colnot seem to be well understood in the Senate; and this leges a set is to be presented. Such are the endeavors of misconception was likely to lead them to refuse to do an the British Government to extend the knowledge of the act of plain and simple justice. He then gave a history principles on which it is conducted. lle eulogized the of the application for this contract; and stated that the character of Mr. Livingston, and called on the Senate not usefulness, the importance, indeed the necessity, of this to do him the injustice of violating a contract, of the work, had been established by sufficient evidence. The value of which such a mind as his was fully competent to Secretary of State had been empowered, by a law of be a judge. Congress, to superintend the work; and, in fulfilment of Mr. KING, of Georgia, said he should vote to strike out his trust, he had compelled the contractors to conform the clause from the bill, and should then vote against the their estimates to the standard of a similar work on anoth amendment of his colleague. He thought there was no er subject. The contract only gives to the contractors more authority in Congress to set up a book shop, than the price of printing and the clerk-hire. It was denied to set up a milliner's shop, to buy books for members, by the contractors that they had ever contemplated an ex- than to buy bonnets for ladies. He referred to the contension of the work to the amount, as had been charged, stitutional powers of Congress, and declared that from of more than a million of dollars. Under the limitation none of them was this authority derived. He expressed imposed by the Committee on Finance, it is believed that his belief that the work, if authorized, would cost the the work can be scarcely completed, and it will be indis- Government three or lour millions of dollars. He dispensable to exclude all unnecessary material, and super- claimed any intention to throw censure on the contractors, fluous expenditure. Only such documents as are indis. but was of opinion that the contract was erroneously and pensable to a collection of materials for the future histo- unconstitutionally entered into, and that the Secretary of rian of this country, can now be included.
State had been taken in. Mr. C. then handed in a paper from the contractors- Mr. HILL said: Viewing, as I do, the practice of supwhich was read.
plying members of Congress with books at the public ex. Mr. SOUTHARD then expressed his hope that there pense to be an enormous abuse, I have, ever since I had would be no difficulty about this item in the appropriation a seat in this body, and whenever I could get an opporbill. He could not approve of Congress making light of tunity of recording my ay or no, voted against every proptheir own contract. He thought the contractors bad act- osition for furnishing them. My first attempt to obtain ed in the most free and liberal manner. They had sub- a vote in this body against this practice, at the session mitted to restrictions which deprived them of some of the two years ago, was scouted as “miserable parsimony, advantages of the original contract. But his principal by one Senator near me, (Mr. FRELINGHUYSEN.) I then objection to disturbing the appropriation was,' that,' as opposed the purchase of a book, published for the benefit one of the parties, Congress had no right to interrupt this of the Bank of the United States, containing what pur. contract.. ile looked also at the importance of the work, ported to be a legislative bistory of the rise and progress which was more than that of all the printing which has of that institution, in which many of the most important been done for the last five years, and which had cost much speeches and proceedings are entirely omitted. The bank more money. He complained of the general ignorance book, it is believed, was published at the instance of the which prevailed in this country of the principles and mo- bank itself, which liberally paid for its share of the editives connected with the Revolution, and thought that the tion. But the new members of the present Congress, as documents which shed a light on these points should not well as of the last, have all been furnished with the same be suffered to perish, as they must, unless now collected. book; and I presume, so long as any books shall remain in As yet, there is no history of our country. We have the hands of the publishers, all future new members will soine histories, but they do not show the foundation on be hereafter furnished. That book, made up of extracts which our institutions rest. No expense should deter from newspapers, may be really worth, as other similar Congress from publishing this work. But the total ex-l books are sold, from one to two dollars. Thc price paid
(JUNE 21, 1834. for every book taken by Congress is five dollars. The printing could be done for in any other city of the Union? book was printed by certain pet printers of the bank in This price was not fixed by Mr. Livingston. A Secretary this city, (Gales and Seaton,) and so long as those printers of State (Mr. Clar) under the last administration, made can have access, so as to introduce a short resolution, the first contract for publishing Diplomatic Correspond. providing for payment out of the contingent fund, through ence, liaving found a resolution of Congress, which passed some inember of either House of Congress, so long each several years before authorizing, or supposed to authorize new member will continue to be supplied with every book it; and the contractor (Mr. Jared Sparks) for the pub. they shall have on hand.
lication of a few volumes, sold his privilege to a second It is now said that the Documentary History of Matthew person for the trifling profit of ten thousand dollars! The St. Clair Clarke and Peter Force, provided for by an act price of that first contract is made by law the basis of the of Congress, and for which the bill under consideration contract for the Documentary History: Mr. Livingston appropriates thirty-five thousand dollars, will cost a vast made the contract as the law required him; he could not suin of money--half a million of dollars is the lowest cal. limit the number of volumes, because the law did not culation, and some say that it may cost a million and a limit it. half. An attempt is made to make the late Secretary of It is now understood that the contractors are willing State (Mr. Livingston) responsible for the rate and enor. to limit themselves. The price of publishing a single mity of this contract.' Rather should the blame go to the volume of fifteen bundred copies, is calculated at 22,900 Congress which passed the law than to Mr. Livingston. dollars, and other expenses will make it 25,000 dollars. well remember when that law passed this body, although The contractors will limit themselves to twenty folio volit is very probable that other gentlemen recollect little umes as the minimum; and these twenty folio volumes are about it. All the facts in the case do not show themselves to cost 500,000 dollars! Of what value, think you, Mr. upon the Journal; and it is my misfortune that they do President, will be a Documentary History of the Revolunot.
tion of twenty folio volumes! li would be as ninety-nine There were two propositions considered at the same grains of wheat in one hundred bushels of chafi. time, both of them, i believe, reported on, and sanction- The extra printing—by extra printing, I mean not any ed by the Library Committee, for extensive jobs of print-portion of that printing daily ordered by the Senate, coning. 'One was, on the proposal of Duff Green to publish a sisting of distress petitions, with the names; other petistereotype edition of the Laws and Treaties of the United tions and memorials, reports on the Post Office, &c., conStates, at the rate of two dollars and fifty cents per vol stituting what is annually published in several volumes, as ume; and the other Clarke and Force's proposal to print the Journal and Documents—the extra printing of books and furnish the Documentary History of the Revolution. merely for the purpose of furnishing members of Con. Both propositions were hastily urged through the Senate. gress, voted by the Senate at the last session alone, woull Duff Green's job of stereotyping the Laws (which was amount, if all the propositions had succeeded, to a greatarrested in the House of Representatives) would have er sum of money than the whole expense of a single year cost the Treasury from one to two hundred'thousand dol. of Mr. Jefferson's administration. Besides the enormous lars; other printers had proposed to perform the work at job of Clarke and Force, and the vote on the proposition less than one-half of his price. The mention of this fact to stereotype the Laws, there was another job voted to appeared to have no effect on the vote of the Senate. I Duff Green for printing the Land Laws, which is introduasked for the question to be taken by yeas and nays-itced in the present appropriation bill, amounting to fortywas so taken, and you will find but seven Senators (Ben two thousand nine hundred and sixty dollars; and a resoton, Black, Dickerson, Foot, Hill, Robinson, and Wil- lution passed for the benefit of Gales and Seaton, allow. kins) voting to sustain me-twenty-five voting against my ing them further to extend their compilation of Congresmotion to lay the bill on the table.
sional Documents eight volumes folio. If these eight folio Immediately after this, the bill making provision for volumes cost as much as those contracted for by Clarke the publication of the Documentary History of the Revo- and Force-and as yet I have, after diligent inquiry, been lution was taken up. Mr. Foot, of Connecticut, was in unable to ascertain what Gales and Seaton are paid for the chair. I asked for the seas and nays on the question, this work—that additional job to them will amount to two Shall it be engrossed and read a third time! Without hundred thousand dollars. It is true the contract with waiting to call the attention of Senators to the question, them is only for seven hundred and fifty copies instead of the chairman declared the proposition for the yeas and fifteen hundred; but I understand they publish an addi. nays was not sustained; and both bills were considered in tional seven hundred and fifty copies, to supply members Committee of the Whole, reported, and passed on by the of Congress hereafter. Already has the supply for Con. Senate, in less time than I have been speaking about it. gress run out; and at this session a resolution bas passed, Ever since that time, I hare deemed it a work of superero authorizing the Secretary to purchase more for the supply ogation in me to oppose any proposition for printing or of the new members of ihe Senate. furnishing books for ihe benefit of printers in this District I may safely say that the books furnished to members
-and have contented myself with giving a silent rote of Congress (and each new member at the present sesagainst them whenever I could obtain an opportunity. sion has already been supplied, to the number of about
Mr. Livingston ought not to be blamed for the contract seventy volumes) cost twice and in some instances four made with Clarke and Force. The fault is in the law, not times the price of books of equal size and superior value, in the contract. How could Mr. Livingston limit the that are to be obtained in the most of our cities and number of volumes, when the law was without limit? He towns. Gladly would I return every book I have received was taken advantage of by the contractors-he could not and pay for their transport back to the seat of Govern. be supposed to know that an increase of the number of ment, if the money could be returned to the Treasury, copies, or the increase of the size of the volumes, would which has been abstracted to procure them. These make an enormous increase of the price. Clarke and books are held up to new members as an appeal to their Force knew well enough how they were cheating the cupidity. It is said at once that all the old members bare public, as well when they smuggled the bill through the received them and that the new members ought to claim two Houses of Congress, as when they made the contract them of course. And so soon as you receive a copy of with the Secretary of State. Why did Congress legislate the common plunder, so soon, in the estimation of some in the dark on this subject! Why did they pass a law re. gentlemen, are you precluded from voting against others quiring the Secretary of State to contract for an unlimited or yourself receiving more of that plunder. I found a amount of printing, at double tlic price which the same portion of these books tied up in bundles and left ai my
June 21, 1834.]
General Appropriation Bill.
rooms, before I took my oath or seat in this hall, at the first when it can be procured, and by separate action when session of the last Congress. If I had been a non-commit- no other can be obtained, from the Treasury, to pay tal before, in relation to the purchase of books, the inten- those who have been engaged in the work of deceiving tion was, that I would not set out in my Senatorial career the people by poisoning the fountains of knowledge; and a non-committal; and the language to me was, immediate- this, too, while a vast majority of the same people has ly, “Having partaken of the plunder, you have no right repeatedly declared against them. to complain of the robbery."
Mr. CHAMBERS replied to the remarks of Mr. King. But, Mr. President, it is not the cupidity of mem- He considered the time as gone by, when the constitubers of Congress—it is not their desire to add to their li- tionality of such acts was denied. He adverted again to braries at home without expense to themselves—that alone the value of the work, the labor which had already been prompts to these glaring abuses. For whose benefit bestowed upon it, the researches which had been carhave these publications been procured?. For the benefit ried on, the intelligence of those who conducted them, of partisan printers of newspapers in this District. We and the interest which the work was calculated to prohave heard abundance of complaint from the other side, duce in the public mind. The price for which this work of printers being patronised by the Post Office Depart- was to be furnished, was not at all adequate to the imment. Has that Department ever patronised and paid portance and labor of the work. In reference to someany printer for other service than what the exigencies of thing which had fallen from Mr. Hill, on the subject the Department required? Has that Department ever of rewarding printers, &c., Mr. C. said he would tell a thrown away hundreds of thousands to printers for pub- story. He was once travelling over the Alleghany moun. ishing its own history, or to furnish a library for each of tains, when he stopped at a hut, kept by a respectable the officers in its employ?
old gentleman, who entertained men and horses. ConWho are the favorites intended to be benefited by the versing with the old gentleman on the subject of rattle. votes of the Senate at the last session? First, we have snakes, which abounded there, he (Mr. c.) made some Messrs. Gales and Seaton, editors of the National Intelli- inquiries, and gained some information as to their natural gencer, who, as printers of Congress, had already receiv- history. “I don't know how they live,” said the old man, ed more than a million of the public money; and, so far "s but I know how they die. There is an old stump a from being satiated with that, are still receiving from little from the hut, where an old rattlesnake lived for a fifty to a hundred thousand dollars as publishers of the great many years, and died, at last, from the poison of his Congressional Documents, besides an equal or greater own venom.' amount as printers of the House of Representatives—and Mr. MANGUM moved to strike out, in the amendment nobody but themselves and Nicholas Biddle can tell how to the amendment, the words “to remunerate," and to much for printing the millions of speeches in favor of the insert the words “ 10 settle with,” and to strike out bank, that bave been gratuitously circulated; and all this $15,000 and insert $20,000. in the present year. Then we have the printer of the Mr. FORSYTH accepted the amendment. He then exSenate, General Duff Green. His Telegraph cannot pos- plained that he did not mean to destroy the contract, but sibly be supported without all the extra jobs the Senate to leave that to be decided on when Congress should have can give him. I cannot but admire the ingenuity with more leisure. which gentlemen make it appear necessary to have so Mr. CHAMBERS suggested that the publication of much public printing. The printing of the Land Laws was one volume would cost little more than was now proposed ordered; and we then had minute calculations that the to be given for nothing. expense should not exceed eight or nine thousand dol- Mr. FORSYTH did not wish to do any thing to justify lars; it is swelled up, before the work is done, to about a further expenditure than was already incurred. He forty thousand dollars. Then the report on the Post Of. disclaimed any desire to do injustice to the individuals. fice must be printed; and members in the confidence of They were not to be blamed for making as much as they the printer seem well to understand that the price of could out of an act of Congress. But he desired time to printing will not be as high as is sapposed. The printing look into the law, and to obtain a report from the Deof this session, in which less business has been done in partment. the Senate of value to the nation than was ever done in Mr. POINDEXTER read an amendment, which he any former session, is as enormous in quantity as it has would move, by way of addition to the original clause, been unimportant to the transaction of business. This should the present amendment fail. He recommended to principally has rendered necessary two amendments to the person who had read a tract this morning on the subthe appropriation bill, adding more than ninety thou-ject of payment to printers, to dedicate it to Edward Livsand dollars to that bill. Even this job of Clarke and ingston and Andrew Jackson, and it would doubtless have Force, which seems to be without limit or end, was start- a good effect upon their future action. He thought the ed in part payment for partisan services of the opposition contract an improper one, but there was a moral obligapress against the administration. Mr. Force, as editor tion on Congress to fulfil it. and proprietor, had labored against this administration Mr. WEBSTER said his objection was, that this was a in the National Journal, with not less zeal than his seniors contract, which could not be violated, and the object of of the National Intelligencer. Money had been sunk in the gentleman from Georgia was to buy off this contract. that establishment; and the expedient of publishing a Mr. FORSYTH explained that he did not desire to deDocumentary History was resorted to for the purpose of stroy the contract. remunerating Mr. Force. If the facts could be known, Mr. WEBSTER said that the object was to disaffirm there is little doubt in my mind, that the party had pro- the contract, and the Senate had no right to do so. He vided this means of payment of debts which had been in- was himself disposed to go on with the contract, deemcurred in publishing one of the vilest of the vile news-ing the work a valuable one, and the terms fair. He papers that has opposed the present administration. could have no objection to the proposition of the gentle
Mr. President, let this unlimited printing job be called man from Mississippi. The appropriation ought to be by its right name. Let the fact be known, that it is one made, and the Secretary of State could then report, beof the many expedients of the present time to reward fore another appropriation was asked, if any modifications those who have for years slandered the Chief Magistrate should be made. of the people's choice and abused the people themselves. Mr. PRESTON having asked if any printing had been Let it be understood, that hundreds of thousands are an- actually done under the contractnually drawn, by joint action of both Houses of Congress, Mr. WEBSTER expressed an opinion that no printing
General Appropriation Bill.
[JUNE 21, 1834.
had been done, but there had been great expenses in. Mr. BIBB said he would never give his vote to violate curred. The subject had been looked into by the Com- a contract. But here was a question as to the constitumittee of Ways and Means, and he thought the appropri- tional right of Congress to make such a contract, and then ation should be made.
as to what the contract required to be done. Error had Mr. PRESTON believed that the progress of the work been produced by the generality of the terms of the condid not at present justify a larger expenditure than that tract, and Congress had been thus induced to sanction so proposed by the amendment of the gentleman from heavy an expenditure. He concluded by moving a pro. Georgia, as now modified. He viewed the question as viso to the amendment, that nothing therein contained surrounded by great difficulties. He had doubts as to the should be taken as a sanction of the contract. The constitutionality of authorizing the publication of works amendment was accepted. which did not inform Congress, or the people, on the Mr. HILL said, that the Senator from Maryland had subject of the proceedings of Congress. The contract told a story about a rattlesnake, but he had not told the was under the law, passed by both Houses, and appro- whole. The attention of the old man was called to the ved by the present Chief Magistrate, General Andrew stump by the cackling of an old goose. He had not beJackson; and where, under such law, vested rights had fore understood the value of a cackling goose. arisen, they ought to be touched with a very scrupulous Mr. CHAMBERS. I am likely to understand its value, hand. He regarded the terms of the law as loose and as I have just heard it. extraordinary. The contractors had now acquired vested Mr. KING, of Georgia, then made some remarks in rights, and he was not disposed to sanction any viola- explanation of what he had previously said. tion of the faith of the Government, because Congress Mr. KING, of Alabama, then made some observations was not amenable to any human tribunal. But all al on the extravagant character of the contract, which would lowed the contract to be improvident, and it was loose, enable the individuals to draw from the Government, a and liable to great abuse. It was proper that there should sum beyond even their own highest expectations, and be a strict examination of the contract, and it should be this was to be forced on the sanction of Congress, by genrendered specific as to the character of the matter, and tlemen, on the ground of the inviolability of a contract. the extent of the work. However high his opinion of in- He did not intend to cast any doubt on the respectability dividuals, he would not give a roving commission to any of the contractors, but he could not give his consent to one to select materials, which would take their tone from so loose a contract. his prejudices or party liaisons. Would the gentleman Mr. CLAY said, that the Secretary of State had made from Massachusetts be willing to give a roving commis- one contract, and the Committee on Finance had made sion to prepare the materials for a history of that State another. The first was an improvident one, but it was in during the late war? Or would he himself (Mr. P.) be the authority of the Secretary. He should have corrected willing to intrust to any one who might be selected to go the improvidence of Congress. The only restriction iminto his State and pick up materials for a history of nulli- posed by Congress, was as to the individuals to be con. fication? He thought that there should be examination, tracted with, and that in the proviso that the price should and he was willing to pay up to the present day for the not exceed that of the Diplomatic Correspondence. It progress of the work, and he thought $20,000 sufficient had not been shown to have exceeded this stipulation. Con. at present.
gress ought to take their full share of blame, and not Mr. WILKINS explained that it was intended to pub, leave the whole on the Secretary. If the first contract lish a volume of this work before the next session of Con- was loose, the second was full of limitations. The congress. It must be a very strong case which would startle tract now cannot exceed twenty volumes, an expense of him from giving his sanction to any proposition for the 300,000 dollars, and a further provision that Congress extension of knowledge. He thought, however, that may appoint an agent to supervise the publication. He $20,000 would be sufficient to appropriate now, leaving it asked, on what pretence the Senate could depart from to a future session to make further appropriations. As their second contract. When the contractors agreed to yet, no part of the work had been submitted to Congress, the limitations of the committee, they fully expected to and, therefore, there was nothing done, and Congress meet with no further difficulty; and it would not be doing were yet in the dark as to its character. The contract justice to the contractors to violate this last contract, as had lost its sanctity of character, by the liberal manner in well as the former. The expenditure would be 25,000 which the contractors had agreed to limitations and modi- dollars a year, for perhaps six, eight, or ten years, and fications. If it were, therefore, a simple reduction of the work would be a very important one. The contract appropriation, he would agree to it, considering that as was an improvident one, and he had at first thought it sufficient to pay in advance. He admitted it was a ro- would be well to get rid of it by paying 40 or 50,000 ving commission, for which Mr. Livingston was justly dollars. But as the contractors had liberally agreed to censurable.
limitations, it was due to them to fulfil the second con. Mr. CHAMBERS placed a paper on file from the con- tract. If it should be hereafter said that useless docutractors, in which they yield any claim for payment in ad- ments were introduced, Congress could then arrest the vance for the first volume, until it shall be published. appropriation. He expressed his hope that a useful les
Mr. MANGUM said, it was his original feeling to arrest son would be drawn from this case, and that improvident the progress of this contract at once. He had now, how- expenditures of this kind would hereafter be avoided. ever, come to a conclusion that the contract was void; Although, when the law was passed, the extent of the apand, if he should be sustained in this view, no act of Con- propriation was not understood, it was the fault of Congress could establish a vested right under such a contract. gress, who had not looked into the petition of the conBut it was a grave question, involving the rights of indi- tractors. He should vote for the appropriation. yiduals. He desired examination; and if the contract Mr. FORSYTH modified his amendment, by inserting, was declared to be valid, it ought be fulfilled, be the cost" proper accounting officers," instead of “Secretary of what it may. He had moved $20,000 to pay any expen- the Senate." He suggested that the second contract was ses of the contractors thus far; and, if a judicial issue not binding. He asked for the yeas and nays on the could be obtained, he would prefer that mode of settling amendment. the validity of the contract. The work of selection ought Mr. LEIGH asked if this proposition would prevent to be confided to the most able and experienced man in the printing of the work. the country, and separated from the mechanical depart- Mr. FORSYTH said it would, except at the risk of the
He would not now vote for an abrogation of contractors. the contract.
June 21, 1834.)
[SENATE. Mr. LEIGH took the ground that Congress had no right King of Georgia, Linn, McKean, Mangum, Morris, Presto violate a contract made by the Secretary of State, un- ton, Robinson, Shepley, Tallmadge, Tipton, White, Wilder their authority, because they had not a right to make kins, Wright. --23. such contract. He then read the law, to show the loose. NAYS.-Messrs. Bell, Benton, Chambers, Clay, Clayness of its provisions, and stated the illimitable power of ton, Ewing, Frelinghuysen, Kent, Leigh, Naudain, Poinselection which it conferred on the contractors. The dexter, Porter, Prentiss, Robbins, Silsbee, Smith, Southvalue of such a work depended materially on the ability ard, Sprague, Tomlinson, Tyler, Waggaman, Webster. and the temper of those who executed it. He asked -22. what would have been the effect, if Hume or Henry had
DEATH OF LAFAYETTE. been employed to write the Documentary History of the
During the preceding discussion, the consideration of Stuarts, or Dr. Lingard to write the Documentary History the appropriation bill was suspended by general consent; of the Reformation? The Documentary History of the when United States might be as well extended to two hundred
A message was received from the House of Represent. volumes as limited to ten. It was the duty of the Secreatives, by Mr. Franklin, their Clerk, stating that the House tary of State to have looked into the details and correct. had passed a joint resolution providing for a joint com. ed the defectiveness of the law. Although this was a mittee to consider and report by what token of respect contract which ought not to have been made, it must not and affection it was proper for Congress to manifest the be violated. This was what the world would say, and deep sensibility of the nation on the event of the decease what a chancellor would say. He thought it would be of General LAFAYETTE. the best way to appropriate for the first volume, and
Mr. WEBSTER said, that he had prepared a resoluleave it to Congress hereafter, if it should be found ne- tion, which, as it happened, was almost in precisely the cessary, to rescind the contract, under the same circum- same words as that now received from the House. He stances which would justify the rescinding of a treaty.
should have presented it as soon as the Journal was read, The yeas and nays were then ordered.
had it not been intimated to him that, probably, a comMr. CLAYTON expressed his general coincidence with munication would be made to Congress, on this interestthe views of the gentleman from Virginia. He had no ing occasion, by the President. In consequence of that recollection of the bill which had been passed on this intimation, he had forborne, for the moment, to propose subject, and did not know even whether he voted for it or the resolution; but, as the House had so promptly moved not. He did not perceive any ground for imputing fraud in the business, he rose to move that the Senate concur to the contractors, but he thought the law should not have in the resolution, and appoint a committee on its part. been passed, and that the Secretary had transcended his
The motion having been agreed to, Mr. POINDEXTER authority. He was not disposed to perform the contract suggested that the committee consist of nine members. if he could honorably get rid of it. He saw no other
Mr. FORSYTH named thirteen, the number of the old course than that suggested by the Senator from Pennsyl- States, as the most appropriate. This last number was vania, to reduce the appropriation, so as to make it mere agreed to; and, ly enough to pay for the first volume, and the adoption
On motion of Mr. CHAMBERS, the committee was of the amendment suggested by the gentleman from Miso appointed by the Chair. sissippi, calling for information from the Secretary of State. He said that he should receive a lesson from this President of the United States, by Mr. Donelson, his Sec
The following message was then received from the The bill had passed at the close of the session, and
retary: without sufficient deliberation.
To the Senate and House of Representatives: Mr. CALHOUN said that Congress had no authority to
The afflicting intelligence of the death of the illustrimake the contract, and that it was ab initio void. He de-lous LAFAYETTE has been received by me this morning. sired the contractors to be indemnified for their expense I have issued the general order enclosed, to cause apand labor; and he would vote for the amendment of the propriate honors to be paid by the army and navy to the gentleman from Georgia. Mr. WEBSTER said the provision suspends the con- countrymen; and whom Providence has been pleased to
memory of one so highly venerated and beloved by my tract; while the proviso says that it neither affirms or dis-remove so unexpectedly from the agitating scenes of life. affirms the contract. If we have no constitutional
ANDREW JACKSON. to make the contract, we have none to make compensa- WASHINGTON, June 21, 1834. tion to those who suffer from its violation.
On motion of Mr. FORSYTH, the message was referMr. BIBB made an explanation as to this point, view- red to the joint committee appointed on this subject. ing the amendment as an injunction to the parties not to proceed until examination.
GENERAL APPROPRIATION BILL. Mr. WEBSTER said this was the first instance of an The Senate then resumed the consideration of the apinjunction issued by a party in their own favor. The propriation bill; when amendment was to pay expenses incurred, and he could Mr. BIBB submitted an amendment, making an appronot vote for that if the contract were disaffirmed. priation of four hundred dollars for recording the decis
Mr. EWING was of opinion that the contract was sa- ions of the Supreme Court; which, after a short discussion, cred, and must be fulfilled. If the Congress wash their was rejected. hands of the contract, it must be got rid of entirely, and Mr. 'BIBB submitted a further amendment, appropria. Congress would not be justified in voting a gift to the ting $800 as additional compensation to the judge of the contractors. He thought the law an injudicious one, but western district of Florida, for services rendered under he could not vote to abrogate or suspend the contract. the land laws, in addition to the sum of 1,600 dollars apAbrogation and suspension were similar powers, and Con-propriated as additional compensation to the judges of the gress had no more right to abrogate than to suspend. eastern and southern districts of the same Territory, for
Mr. CALHOUN thought it a clear principle, that if in- the same object; and justice was done to an individual, Congress was bound to Mr. PRESTON submitted an amendment, continuing in compensate him.
force, for one year, the act of 1st July, 1832, and the supThe question was then taken on the amendment of Mr. plemental act of March, 1833, for the establishment of a FORSYTH, and decided as follows:
board of commissioners, and a recorder, for the adjust. YEAS. -Messrs. Bibb, Black, Brown, Calhoun, For- ment of land titles in Missouri; both of which amendments syth, Grundy, Hendricks, Hill, Kane, King of Alabama, were adopted.