Newspaper Page Text
U ffht to be fixed for the permanent residence of
°i e General Government, as near the centre
population, wealth, and extent of territory
as is confident with the convenience of the At
lantic navigation, having also due regard to the
western territory. He then moved to make this
the order of the day for Thursday next.
Mr. Sherman objected—he observed that the
jj o ufe has as muc"i important business before them,
aS they can pofiibly dispatch without entering on
this. Neither is the government in polleifiou of
resources at present for the ellablilhment of a fe
deral town. He therefore moved that the se
cond Monday in December next be assigned for
taking this matter into consideration.
Mr. Hartley. I hope, Sir, the motion will
prevail. Gentlemen who live near New-York
may perhaps be fatiified to postpone this subjeCt
for ten or a dozen years : But justice to the in
habitants of this city requires that it should be
soon fettled. They are going into large expell
ees for erecting a palace for the President, and for
other objects ; if the presumption, on which this
project is founded, is not well grounded, it is
fuft and proper that they Ihould be undeceived.
A regard for their intereits therefore requires
that we should let them know what they are to
depend upon.—He also observed that some atten
tion ought to be paid to the petitions of the
people refpeifting a permanent feat.
Mr. Burk fuggelted that it will be doing great
jnjuftice to the southern states to fix on lb early
a day in the next session, as it is not probable that
the members from thole states will be then pre
Mr. Fitzsimons said the present is the most
proper time to determine this business. There is
now a pretty full representation ; It is not proba
ble that at any future time, there will be so great
a number collecfted, certainly not at any period
in a winter felfion. It is true there is much im
portant bufinels beforeCongrefs : But what more
important than the subject proposed. It is a
question about which people are much agitated.
As to the expence, that is an after consideration.
The present objeCt is only to fix on the place.—
Whether the removal is to be made this year or
next is a diltindt business.
Mr. Sherm in said, that he moved the second
Monday in December,merely to accommodate the
gentlemen who are prelfing. It is evident that
we all have too little time thisfeafon. If the gen
tleman from South-Carolina thinks it too early
a day for the southern members, I am willing to
agree to» a more distant time.
In addition to the arguments for deferingthis
matter, there is another important considera
tion. The Union is not yet complete. North-
Carolina and Rhode-Island have not yet a voice
—It is supposed it will not be long before those
states will become members of the Union.
Mr.S.MiTh (S. C.) moved, that the firlt Monday
in January next, Ihould be assigned for the taking
upthis subjeCt—He was opposed to going into it
at present, and enumerated feveralrefons to shew
tharthe other business could not be put off. The
judiciary bill is prelfing, and has been the order
of the day for several weeks. The funding of
the public debt is also important, and is earneltly
expected. It is of little consequence, he said,
'Jlitre the duty which the houf'e owe to their con
ftituentsis executed,provided it is done, and done
to their fatisfaCtion.
Mr. Scott observed, that a principle of the
Union in which we are bound is the principle of
reciprocal and equal justice.—The question now
before the house is a grand link in the chain of
tie federal fyftein. The peace of the United
States depends as much on this as on any other
question which can come before Congress. An a
doption of some fuchmeafure is apiece of justice
due to the extremities of the continent. It be
ing therefore a point with them, and a point of
justice too, I cannot conceive how any gentleman,
who has the good of the country at heart can op
The resolution holds out this general idea,that
the federal government ought to be fixed at that
pace which is most central with refpeft to popu
lation and territory, having an equal regard to
'lie Atlantic and western part of the union. No
in the western country ever wiflied any thing,
urther than that when the central line between
the northern and southern extremities was fixed,
ongrefs Ihould establish their feat as far back on
1 is line, as the conveniency of maritime com
merce would allow.
1 think the people have a right to demand this,
this principle is adinited the fubieCt cannot in
volve much debate.
This is a favorable moment to fettle the great
<jueti°n -which lias agitated the mass of the peo-
Pe tor several years. We may be allured that
ongiefs at this time poflefles all their virtue and
nocence, but it is to be feared that will not be
eca ein future : Congress are now clear of all
rations, aiK ' as destitute as possible of the spirit
ni' ; P a! J t - v am ' local views. In a future day faction
Pe/ V" 6 le S overn ment to fix oil some impro-
one tw ° events will result from
after t er they will be obliged again to remove
ex pending great funis of money on this
imprudent establishment, or the union will be
Mr. Livermore said that the two houses ha<:
come to a resolution to adjourn ne<xt month.—
Many weighty matters are ltill before the Legisla
ture. How much time a difculfion of this fub
jei'i will require, is uncertain. It may engross
a great deal, and there is danger of its producing
that auimolity and party spirit, which the mea
l'ure itfelf proposes to guard againlt. Let us firl'.
finifh the organization of government, and tht
performance of those important duties which the
public anxiously expert of us.
I do not underltand, said he, that any gentle
man is uneasy in his present situation. I havi
heard no complaints. Congrefsare well accom
modated in this city. There may be other places /
to be sure, in which they might find accommoda
tions, but I believe both the citizens of New-
York, and the members of the Legislature are
mutually fatisfied—l have not heard of any me
morial from the former requeftingus to remove—
Many parts of the country indeed seem to be in
a fever to have us with them ; especially the Stare
of Pennsylvania—Carlisle, Lancaster, York town,
German-town, and Reading have lent us abun
dance of petitions, setting forth their various ad
vantages, and we v/ifhthat they may enjoy them.
If they are pleasantly situated and have plenty
of fiih, we are glad to hear it.
I cannot fee any reason for postponing all our
important matters in order to consider this—lf
we can dispatch all these matters by next spring,
and the roads should be so impaflable, that we
ihouldnot be able to get home, I shall be for ta
king it up.
He then observed, that the idea of a permanent
feat is not itfelf llritftly true. As population in
creases, and as men of" new principles and *iews
take their feats in Congress, this permanent feat
may be altered at pleafure—lt is certainly wife
in congress to be economical—lt is always found
a very expensive thing to remove, —And the finan
ces of the country are not at present a lequate to
many new expences—A gi eat variety of objedts
are necefiary to be :aken into view in fixing the
leat of government, besides the mathematical cen
trality—Thehealthinefeof the situation is a capi
tal circumstances to be attended to.
Mr. Scott objected to the cavalier manner in
which he thought the gentleman treated the fub
Mr. Jackson flad the existence of the Union
depends 011 this subject. The place of the feat of
government is important in every view. It may
be compared to the heart in the human body ; it
is a center from which the principles of lite are
carried to the extremities.
It is indifferent to me whether the febjedt is
determined now or next feflion, but I think it best
that the motion lhould lie on the table.
Mr. Stone observed that this will be a very
important business, and it is necefiary to be ex
tremely cautious in conducting it. I know of no
question which will have such a tendency to pro
duce heats and divilions which arise chiefly from an
indiscreet mode of conducting matters of this kind.
I am glad to fee the temperate spirit with which
the house has set out, and! wilh it maycontinufe.
No question will so fully try the temper of this
body as the present.
The question was then taken on Mr. Smith's
motion, and was loft—Ayes 21—Noes 30.
M . Ames I would afk,Sr, it the original motion is not incon
fiftant with the resolution of the house to adjourn on the 2ad of
September ? A committee, said he, has been appointed to report
the business of the present feflion. Tne corftmittee reported, and
so much of that report was accepted, as related to the time of ad
journment. It seems to me therefor , that the proportion to take
up this fubjeft at the present time, is fuperceded. lam confident
that it is inconsistent with that determination It will become
necefiary therefore to rescind that determination, and whether
that will be done or not, mult depend on the disposition of the
Senate. If they should not concur, the Legislature will be obliged
to leave the moil important business unfinifhed.
I connot suppress some emotions of surprize that gentlemen can
bring forward questions which have not for their obj £1 the com
plete organization of the government. The government yet lies
prostrate and inanimate, and inflead of infufing life into it, and
giving it motion, we have been in the firft place altering our con
ltitution, and now wcare going into a longdifcufi&on to determine
where we (hall fit.
If the gentleman't motion onlj involved a few abftraft propo
rtions, it would still be uncertain how difficult their decision might
be. But were I a stranger I should apprehend, from the manner
in which the motion ha been introduced, that it would be a ques
tion agitated withas much acrimony as any whatever.
I have observed that even on the most trifling question it is ex
tremely difficult to obtain unanimity. What then mutt t>e the
division on a question, which* gentlemen have said, concerns the
existence or peace of the union ! I believe it will involve as
many paflions as can reside in the humanheart. Every
principleof local interest, of pride and honor, and even of patrio
tism itfelf are engaged lam willing to pledge my felt to the
gentleman, that it the good of the union requires that the feat of
government should be fixed at Pittsburgh, I will vote for it. But
1 must now vote for postponing the business It is not enough to
determine where the feat of government ought to be, but it is
ncceffary to prepare the public mind to agree with ouis in the
decision of questions of this magnitude. Our reasons ousjht to be
made public, and they to be the reasons of the public.
When I left my conftituentsj I did not contemplate this business
nor have I yet formed my own opinion. When I do, I pledge
myfelf that it shall not fprirtg from local or felfi t principles.
The gentleman has brought forward this lubjett as a very im
portant one. As such we will consider it. If it were to deter
mine merely the centre of matter, it might be fettled in a short
tinie—lf we are to represent the oaks and mountains—lf the acres
of the United States are to be represented, a few da) s of calcula
tion may determine it.
I am of opinion that the centre of our government should be a
centre of convenience and utility) that the heart should be so
placed as to propel the blood to the extremities, "with the mo(b
juitable and easy motion. I would place the head ot the go
vernment, where it might guard mofl etfeftua.iy the extremes,and
loteft the weak parts. It is my wiih that the territory now lub
-61 to the laws of the Union may continu so, and that the go J
vcrnment may be so situated aS to ufc its force with the best advan
tage to ensure the prcfervaiion of the Union, and obedience to its
The gentleman from Connecticut has rightly said that the States
f North-Carolina and Rhode-Island ftiould have a voice in this
I would not impute unworthy motives to the gentleman who
ntroduced the motion ; but I would ask him whether the world
t large should not be equally convinced of their purity ; whether
n justice to himfelf, the public hnnd (hould not be better pre pa
red for the occasion. lam not convinced that our government
itill so ill cemented and so feeble, could stand the shock of such a
ineafure, and therefore I molt ardently depricate the event.
The quellion for making this bufin fs the order of the day for
Tburfday next,was carried. Adjourned. [DailV Advr.]
FRIDAY, AUGUST ?8.
Mr. FitzsimonS presented a lengthy memorial from the pub
lic creditors of the State of Pennsylvania, which was read and
laid on the table.
Mr. Trumbull presented a memorial from the ommanders of
.he Packets, which ply between New-York, and Newport and
Providence in Rhode-Island, refpefting the hardships which they
'uffer by reafori of that Slate's being considered oui of the Union.
A letter from the Governor of South Carolina, addrelTed to the
Speaker, inclosing an account of the exports of that State fronji
December, 1787, to December, 1788, was read.
The report of the committee on the memorials from the mer
chants of George-town and Alexandria, wastaken up, and accept
d, and the fame committee ordered to bring in a bill for the re
lief of the memorialists.
In committee of the whole, on the bill for establishing the fa
'aries of the officers in the executive departments, their afllftants,
The committee agreed upon the following salaries, viz.
To the the Secretary of theTreafury, 35©° Dollars:
of State, 3000
of the War Department, 3000
To the Comptroller, - - 2000
Auditor, - 1500
Treasurer, - - 1600
.Register, - - 1250
Governor of the Western Teritory, in-
eluding the emoluments ofSuperin-> 2500
tendant of Indian Affairs, )
Afliftantto the Secretary of theTreafury, 1500
Chief Clerk to the Department of State, 800
Chief Clerk to the Department of War, 600
Secretary of the Western Territory, 750
Principal Clerk to the Comptroller, 800
Chief Clerk to the Auditor. 600
Three Judges of the Western Territory, 800 doL each.
To the Clerks which may be employed in the several depart
ments, not to exceed 45odollars each.
The committee having gone through the bill,with amendments,
the fame were reported to the house, and accepted. It was then
ordered, that the bill be engrofledfor a third reading to-morrow.
The committee appointed for the purpose, brought in a bill to
fnfpend for a time, the operation of a clause in the collection law,
agreeably to the report on the memorials from Alexandria, and
George-town, which was read the firft time.
Mr. Clymer had leave of 9bfence for a few days—and Mr.
Stu r c es to the end of the feflion. Adjourned.
Certain interejling representations presented to an Hon. Afftmbly gaii
rife to the following, which please to publish. Yours, P. Q.
WHEREAS it is of confcquencc,
Congress (hould fix its refidence —
That feat of honor and renown,
Yclept long since the " Federal town
The people of this pleasant borough,
From a convi£tion just and thorough,
That there's no other situation,
Can equal this in all the nation ;
Your honors do most humbly pray,
To make it your abode for aye.
Nature provideth here so ample,
We only can feleft a sample
Of what this blefled place affords,
Enough to tempt a House of Lords f
Where'ei you turn your wond'ring eyes*
Tenthoufand pleasing profpefts rife!
The streams meandering thro the Vales,
" BLUE HILLS," whose height the (kieiaiTaiis ;
The air falubnous, sweet, and bracing,
All fogs, and noxious vapors chafing ;
And as no mortal man can think,
But what you all must eat and drink,
Our markets give, ye gods, such meat,
As ye, in your own hotels, eat :
We've beef, and and lamb, and mutton,
As fine as e'er was table put on ;
And dunghill fowls, wild ducks, and widgeons,
And lnipes,and geese, and quails, and pigeons j
Pheasants, and ortolans, be sure,
To please the daintiest epicure.
Our Schuylkill give* us fifh in pletity,
Of forts we reckon more than twenty—
Asfhad and alwives, pretty picking,
Without a bone your throat to (lick in ;
That Schuylkill, theme of future song,
Upon whose waves are borne along
Two.hundred thousand facksof wheat,
Transported in Mufketo fleet—
Mufketo fleet! yes, hen in peace,
CONGRESS may fit till time shall cease,
Nor (hips with horrid broad fides scare 'em,
Nor soldier with a gun come near 'cm.
At present we've three hundred houfes^
All ft 1 I'd with loving wives and spouses ;
But timber, fkinglesTJfonttmgrioatdr,
The neighborhood store affords ;
We'll give you (tones all vein'd with blue,
And thank you when you take them too ;
But as for bricks, you pay for making,
They cost us time and pains in baking;
We've carpenters, and masons good,
As ever woik'd in (lone or wood ;
Artists in every kind of work,
To build you houses in a jerk.
eve barbers, tailors, and (hoe makers,
Pye-womeq, hucksters, brewers, bakers ;
Taverns in -plenty too abound,
And here and there a church is found ;
Besides all these, there are « exteriors,"
We need not mention our superiors,
Both for convenience, and delight,
To crown the day, and eke the night:
i Then come good Sirs, make this your feat
Where nature's choicest bounties meet—
The public good prompts this petition,
From yours with rev'renceand fubmiflion.