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pleased, he would upon his honour adjourn himself; and thereupon he immediately withdrew, by which means Congress could not proceed to business.
Mr. Langworthy, the delegate representing Georgia, having also withdrawn
Ordered, That the messenger wait on the members, and desire them to attend Congress.
The messenger returned, and reported, that he had delivered the message of Congress to the members. That Mr. Langworthy replied he would return presently. That Mr. Burke replied, “ Devil take him if " he would come ; it was too late and too unreasonw able."
Mr. Langworthy attended, and declared that when he withdrew, he thought Congress was adjourned; and under that opinion he withdrew.
Adjourned to 9 o'clock, to-morrow.
APRIL 11, 1778.
A motion was made, that the minute made by the secretary last evening, relative to the manner in which Congress was prevented from proceeding on business, be entered on the journal as of last evening.
Whereupon it was moved, that the consideration of this matter be postponed to Monday next. And the yeas and nays being requiredMassachusetts Bay, Mr. Dana, No.)
Mr. Gerry, Ay. No.
South Carolina, Mr. Laurens, No. No.
Mr. Drayton, No.3 No.
So it passed in the negative.
Ordered, That the same, as amended, be entered on the journal as of last evening...
Ordered, That Mr. Burke be furnished with a copy of the minute relative to the manner in which Con- . gress was last evening prevented from proceeding on business; and that he be allowed til Monday next to : answer.
Mr. Burke having, in the course of the debate this morning upon his conduct last evening, declared, “ That he will not submit to a tyranny of a majority of 5 this Congress, which would keep him here at unrea.
“sonable hours; that he wished to know the power of “ Congress over their members; that he will attend at 6 times he thinks reasonable, but will not attend at "times he thinks unreasonable, unless by force on his “person”—He admitted the answer reported by the messenger; but, that on his absence last evening, the members ceased to be a body, and therefore he was guilly of no rudeness to Congress; and if he was guilty of an affront, it was to individual members, and required another kind of apology; that he was not convinced he had done any wrong; was not disposed to make any kind of apology; and if he had been guilty of improper behaviour, he will answer to his state. That he was yesterday evening unwell, and not able to attend without prejudice to his health.
Ordered, That Mr. Burke be furnished with a copy of the foregoing expressions, used by him in the course of the debate, and minuted; and that he be allowed to Monday next to answer thereto.
EADEM DIE. P.M. The member from North Carolina having offered a paper to Congress, as his answer to the charge against him, a debate thereon ensued, in which the same member, having made use of expressions which were deemed exceptionable, as charging Congress with a combination against him, he was called to order ; whereupon he said, “I do believe, thạt that gentleman from New " York and others, are in a combination against me in " this business. These words being taken down, and read by the President, the member from North Carolina acknowledged they were truly taken down.
APRIL 24, 1778. Mr. Burke, a meinber from North Carolina, moved, as his right, to return an answer in writing to the charges against him for his conduct and expressions which gave offence to the house, and that his answer be entered on the journal,
On the question put, Whether it is the right of the member to return his answer in the manner demanded, and whether it shall be entered on the journal
Resolved in the negative.
Mr. Burke being heard, and sundry witnesses ex. amined relative to the sending the messenger, and the delivery of the message, &c. which passed out of Congress
A motion was made on the conduct and expressions of Mr. Burke.
Resolved, That the same be referred to a commit. tee of three.
The members chosen-Mr. Chase, Mr. Dana, and Mr. Drayton.
APRIL 25, 1778.
The committee to whom was referred the motion made yesterday, respecting the conduct and expres. sions of Mr. Burke, brought in a report, which was agreed to as follows:
Congress taking into consideration the minutes of the behaviour of Mr. Burke in the house, on the even
ing of the tenth of April instant, of his answer that evening by their messenger, and of his conduct in the house the next day; and the said minutes being read, Mr. Burke being heard in his place, and witnesses examined, it appears to Congress, and they accordingly
Resolved, That the manner in which Mr. Burke withdrew, on the evening of the tenth instant, was disorderly and contemptuous; and that the answer then returned by him was indecent. That the principle upon which he has attempted to justify his withdrawing from the house is dangerous, because it strikes at the very existence of the house, and, as in the present case actually happened, would enable a: single member to put an instant stop to the most important proceedings of Congress. That his charge against the member from New York and others, of a combination against him, not having been even attempted by him to be supported by evidence; therefore, it appears to be affrontive and groundless.
Ordered, That a copy of the minutes, and of the proceedings respecting Mr. Burke, be transmitted to the assembly of North Carolina.
: APRIL 29, 1778. The committee appointed to prepare proposals to such foreign officers and soldiers as incline to become citizens of America, brought in a report, which being read and amended, was agreed to as follows: