The Columbia Democrat. (Bloomsburg, Pa.) 1837-1850, December 23, 1837, Image 1

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I have sworn upon tlio Altar of God, eternal hostility to every form of Tyranny over the Blind of Mali." Thomas Jefferson.
Volume I.
Number 3ff.
Prcsstlcjil's Message
to the two houses or, at the com
Fellow-Citizens of the Senate,
and House of Representatives:
We have reason lo rennw the expression of our
devout gratitude to the Givku or ael noon for his
tenign protection. Our country presents, on eve
ry tide, the evidence of tlint continued favor, un
der whoso auspices it 1ms gradually risen from a
few feeble and dependent Colonics to a prosperous
and ppwerful Confederacy. Wo aro blessed with
domestic tranquility, and all tho elements of na.
tional prosperity. Tho pestilence which invading,
for a time, some nourishing portions of thu Uiuoii,
interrupted tho general prevalence of unusual health,
has happily been limited in extent, and arrested in
ilsfatal career. Tho industry and prudence of our
citizens are gradually relieving them from Ith'c pe
cuniary embarrassments under which portions of
them have labored; judicious legislation, and tho
riatuTal and boundless resources of thj country,
have afforded wise and timely aid to private enter
prise; and tho activity always characteristic of our
peoplo has ahcady, in a great degree, returned its
Usual and profitable channels.
Tho condition of our foreign relations has not
materially changed since tho last annual message
of my predecessor. We remain at peace with nil
nations; and no efforts on my part, consistent with
tho preservation of our rights and the honor of "the
country, elm 1 1 be spared to maintain a position ho
consonant to our institutions. Wo have faithfully
sustained the foreign policy with which the United
States, under tho guidance of their first President,
took their hlnnd in tho family of nations that of
regulating their intercourse with other powers by
tho approved principles of private lif-:; asking and
According cpjat rights and equal privileges; render
ing and demanding justice in ill cases; advancing
their own, and discussing tho pretensions of others,
with candor, directness, and sincerity; appealing at
all times to reason, hut never yielding to force, noi
seeking to acquire any thing for themselves by its
A rigid adherence to this policy has left this Gov
eminent w ith scarcely a claim upon its justice, for
injuries arising from acts committed by its author
ity. Tho niot imposing and perplexing of those of
tho United !?!ls upon lorcign Governments, for
aggressions upon our citizens, were disposed of by
my .predecessor. Independently of the benefits
conferred upon our citizens by restoring to the
mercantile, community so many many millions cf
which tucy hail been wrongfully divested, a great
service was also rendered to his country by the sat
isfactory adjustment of so many ancient and irrita
ting subjects of contention; and it reflects no ordi
nary credit on his successful administration of pub
lic affairs, that this great object was accomplished,
without compromhing, on any occasion, either the
honor, or the pcacoofthc nation.
With European powers no new subjects of diffi
culty have arisen; and those which were under d's
cussion, although not terminated, do not present a
more unlavoraulc aspect tor the I lit lire preservation
of that good understanding, which it has ever been
our desire to cultivate.
Of pending questions, tho most important is that
jvhich exists with tho uovcrnmcnt of Great Britain,
in respect to our northeastern boundary; It is
with unfeigned regret that tho people of the United
States must look back upon tho abortive efforts
made by tho Executive, for a period of more than
half a century, to determine, what no nation should
suffer long to remain in dispute, tho true line
which divides its possessions from those of other
powers. The nature of tho settlement on tho bor
ders of the United State3, and of tho neighboring
territory, was for n season such, that this perhaps
was not indispcnsablo to n faithful performance of
.tho duties of the f ederal uovcrnmcnt. '1 nuchas,
however, changed this slato of things; and lias
brought nbout a condition of affairs, in which tho
truo interests of both countries imperatively require
that this question should be put at rest. It is not
to hodiseuised. that with full confidence, often ex
pressed, in the desire of tho British Government to
terminato it, wo aro apparently as far from its ad
justmcrit as wo wcro at tho timo of signing tho
treaty of pcacoin 1783. Tho solo result of long
nendinir ncirocialions. and n perploxmi arbitration
appears to bo a conviction, on its part, that a con
ventional lino must no auopicii, irom 1110 iuiiom
bility of ascertaining tho truo one, according to the
description contained in that treaty. Without co
inciding in this opinion, whicn is noi mougiii w no
well founded, my predecessor gavo tho strongest
proof of the earnest desire of tho United States to
terminate satisfactorily this dispute, by proposing
tho substitution of a conventional line, if the con.
sent of the States interested in tho question could
be obtained.
To this proposition no answer has as yet been
received. Tho attention of tho British Govern
ment has, hovyever, been urgently invited to the
subject, and its reply cannot, lam confident, be
murh lonccr delayed. Tho gcnrral relations be
tween Great Britain and tho United States are of
the roost friendly character, and l am wen sausii
cd of tho sincero disposition of that Government to
mWininin them unon their present footing. This
disposition has also, I am persuaded, becomo moro
general with tho peoplo of England than at any
niw nrAviniK ueriod. It is scarcely necessary to
say to you, how cordially it is reciprocated by tho
Government and peoplo of thd United States. The
conviction, which must bo common to all, of the
that result from keeping
oncn tills irritating question, and thd certainty that
its final settlement cannot bo much longer deferred;
..ill T inict Inn it in nn earlv and satisfactory adjust'
tncn't. At youi last sossion I had before you tho
between the two Govern
ments, and between this Government and that of
Iho State of Maine, in whoso soliciluuc, concerning
a subject in which sholias so deep an iniercu,
ufiinn nfilin llnlnii narticinatcs.
The feelings produced by a temporary intcrap
inn nrw Wmnninns relations between
and tho Unitod States, which are duo as wcl to
tho recolloctions of former times as to a correct alt-
preciationof existing .Interests, have been
cultivate an actlvo friendship in their future
course. M ho opinion, undoubtedly correct, and
steadily entertained by us, that thu commercial re
lations at present existing between the two coun
tries aro susceptible of great and reciprocally bene
ficial improvements, ja obviously gaining ground in
Trance; and I am assured of the disposition of that
uovcrnmcnt to favor the accomplishment of such
an object. This disposition shall bo met in a pro
per spirit on our part. The few and comparatively
unimportant questions that remains to bo adjusted
between us, can, I liavo no doubt, bo settled with
entire satisfaction and without difficulty.
Between Bussia and tho United States, senti
ments Of good will continue to bo mutually cher
ished. Our Minister recently accredited to that
Court, has been received with a frankness and cor
dialiiy, and with evidences of respect for his coun
try, which leave us no room to doubt tho preserva
tion in future of those amicable and liberal relations
which have so long and so uninterruptedly existed
between the two countries. t)n the few subjects
under discussion between us, an early and just de
cision is confidently anticipated.
A correspondence lias been opened with the Gov
ernment of Austria, for the establishment of Vliplo-
iuuuk iciuuuiis, in roniormiiy Willi mo wisncs ol
Congress, as indicated by an appropriation act of
the session of 1837, and arrangements made for the
purpose, which will be duly carried into effect.
With Austria and Prussia, and with the States
of the German empire, now composing with the
latter the Commercial League, our political rela
tions are of the most friendly character, whilst our
commercial intercourse is gradually extending, with
benefit to all who aro engaged in it.
Civil war yet rages in Spain, producing intense
suffering to its oWn people, and to other nationsin
convcnicnci) and regret. Our citizens who have
claims upon that country will bb prejudiced for a
timo by the condition of its Treasury, the inevitable
consequence ot Ion? continued nnd cxhaustinc in-
ternal wars. Tho last instalment of tho interest of
the debt duo under the convention with the (juccn
of Spain has not been paid; and similar failures may
bo expected to happen, until a portion of the re
sources of her kingdom can bo devoted to the ex
tinguishment of its foreign debt.
Having received satisfactory evidence that dis
criminating tonnage duties wcro charged upon the
vessels of the United Stales in tho ports of Portu
gal, a proclamation was issued on the 1 Ith day of
Uctolicr last, m compliance with the act ol May
.a, 1B.J-, declaring that tact; and tho duties on
foreign tonnage which wcro ievtcd upon Portu
guese vessels in tho United States, previously to
the passage of that act, are accordingly revived.
Tho act of July 4, 183G suspending the discrim
inating duties upon tho produce of Portugal im
ported into this country in Portugese vessels, was
pascd upon tho application of that Government,
through its representative here, under tho belief
thai iio similar discrimination existed in Portugal
to tho prejudice of tho United States. I regret to
state that such duties aro now exacted in that coun
try upon the cargoes of American vessels; and as
tho act referred to vests no discretion in tho Exec
utive, it is for Congress lo determine upon tho ex
pediency of fuluro legislation on the subject. A
gainst these discriminations, affecting the Is
of this country and their cargoes, seasonablo rem
onstranco was made, and notice was given to tho
Portuguese Government that unless they should bo
discontinued, tho adoption of countervailing meas
ures on tho part of the United States would become
necessary, but th'o reply of that Government, re
ceived at tho department of State through our
Charge d'Affaires a. Lisbon, in the month of Sep
tember last, afforded no ground to hope for tho a
bandonmont df a system so little in harmony with
tho treatment shown to tho vessels ot Portugal and
their cargoes in the ports of this country, and so
contrary to tho expectations wo had a right to en
tertain. With Holland, Sweden, Denmark, Naples, and
Belgium, a friendly intercourse has been uninter
ruptedly maintained.
With tho Government of tho Ottoman Porto dnd
its dependencies on tho coast of tho Meditcrancan,
peace and good will ore carefully cultivated, and
have been fostered by such good offices as tho rela
tive distance and the condition of those countries
would permit.
Our cotnmcrco with Greece is carried on under
the laws of tho two Governments, reciprocally ben
eficial to tho navigating interests of both; and I
have reason to look forward to the adoption ot oth
er measurei which will be moro extensively and
permanently advantageous.
Copiosoftho treatise concluded with tho Gov
ernment of Siam and Muscat aro transmitted for
tho information of Congress, tho ratifications hav
ing been received, and tho treaties made public, sinco
tho close ol tno lasi annual session, vircauy iiuvo
:vo reason to congratulate ourselves on tho pros
pect of considerable commercial benefit; and we
have, besides, received from tho Sultan of Muscat
prompt evidenco of his desires to cultivate tho most
friendly feelings, by liberal acts toward ono of our
vessels, uesiowcu in a maimer su sinning a 10 re
quire on our part a grateful acknowledgement.
uur commerco vviiu iiiu imuuus ui ?uv u.m
Porto Bico still labor under heavy restrictions, the
continuanco of which is a subject of regret. Tho
only effect of an adherence to them will bo to ben
efit the navigation oiomcr countries, anno eipuuau
both of tho United States and Spain.
Tho independent nations ol this continent have
ever since thev cmcr cd from the colonial state, ex
perienced sevcro trials m their progress to me per
manent establishment of liberal political institutions.
Their unsettled condition not only interrupts their
num niKnnees to prosperity, buthasoften seriously
injured the other powers of tho world. Tho claims
nf nnr rilizens upon Peru, Chili, Brazil, tho Ar-
centino Itcpublic, tho Governments formed out of
tllO KCpUUllCS Ol VvUlUIIIUlU, tiuu ..iva.vw, w.w p....
pending, although many of them havo been pre-
gcntCU lor cxaiiuiiui.uu mmu ;vu,MI
Venezuela, and Ecuador have re-
..nnlltr fnrmcd a convention for tho purpose of as
certaining and adjusting claims upon tho Bcpublic
of Columbia, from which it is earnestly hoped our
;il nrn lonir. receive full compensation for
tho iniuiics originally inflicted upon them, and for
n 1! tt
tho delay m auuru.i.s u
IKUn CfcdeValion, which wanUonly the ratifica-
lion of that Government. Tho progrss
of a subsequent ncgociation for the settle
ment of claims upon Peru, has been unfa
vorably effected by the war between that
power and Chili, and tho Argentine repub
lic; and the same event is also likely lo
produce delays in the settlement of our de
mands on those powers.
The aggravating circumstances-connect
ed with our claims upon Mexico, and a va
riety of events touching tho honor and in
tegrity of our government, led my prede
cessor lo make, at tno second session of
the last congress, a special recommenda
tion of tho course to bo pursued to obtain
a speedy and final satisfaction of tho inju
ries complained of by this government,
and by bur citizens. lie recommended a
linal demand ol redress, with a contingent
authority to the executive to make repri
sals, if that demand should bo made in vain.
From the proceedings of Congress on
that recommendation, it appeared that the
opinion of both branches of the legislature
coincided with that of the executive, that
any mode of redress known to the law of
nations might justifiably be used. It was
obvious too, that congress bclioved with
tho President, that another demand should
be made, in order to give undeniable and
satisfactory proof of our desire to avoid ex
tremities with a neighboring power) but
that there was an indisposition lo vest a
discretionary authority in the Executive to
take redress, should it unfortunately be ci
ther denied or unreasonably delayed by
tho Mexican Government. So soon as the
necessary documents were prepared, after
entering upon the ditties of my office, a spe
cial messenger was sent to Mexico, to make
a linal demand of redress; with the docu
ments required by the provisions of our
treaty. The demand was made on the
20th of July last. The reply which bcais
date the 20th of the same month, contains
assurances of a desire, oh the part of that
Government, to give a prompt and explic
it answer respecting each of the complaints,
but that the examination of them would ne
cessarily bo deliberate, that in this exami
nation,, it would bo guided by the princi
ples of public law and the obligation of
treaticsflhat nothing should be left undone
that might lead to tho most speedy and
equitable adjustment of our demands; and
that its determination, in respect to each
case, should be communicated through the
Mexican Minister heie.
Sinco that time, an Envoy Extraordina
ry and Minister Plenipotentiary has been ac
credited tp. this Government by that of tho
Mexican Republic. Iio brought witli him
assurances of a sincere desire that the
pending differences between the two gov
ernments should be terminated in a manner
satisfactory to both, lie was received with
reciprocal assurances; and a hope was en
tertained that his mission would lead to a
speedy, satisfactory, and final adjustment
of all existing subjects of complaint. A
sincere belioverin the wisdom ot tno paci
fic policy by which tho United States have
ihvays been governed in their intercourse
with foreign nations, it was my particular
dosire, from tho proximity of tho Mexican
ucnublic, and well known occurrences on
our nontior, to uo insiumentai in ouviaung
all existing difficulties with that Govern
ment, and in restoring to the intercourse be
tween tho two republics, that liberal and
friendly character by which they should al
ways be distinguished. 1 rcp-ret, tnerctore,
the more deeply to have found in the recent
communications of that Government so lit
tle reason to hopo that any future efforts of
mine for tho accomplishment ol those de
sirable objects would be successful.
Although the large numuer, and many
of them aggravated cases of personal wrongs,
have been now for vear3 before the Mexi
can Government, and some of the causes of
national complaint, nnd thoso of tho most
offensive character, admitted of immediate,
simple, and satisfactory replies, it is only
within a lew days past that any specinc
communication in answer to our last dc
mand, made five months ago, has beon re
ceived from the Mexican Minister. By the
report of the Secretary of State, herewith
presented, and tne accompanying documents
it will be soon that for not ono of our pub
lic complaints has satisfaction been given
or offered: that but ono of the cases of per
onal wrong has beon favorably considered;
and that but fdur cases of both descriptions,
out of all thoso formally presented, and
earnestly pressed, havo as yet ben decided
upon by the Mexican Government,
Notpordoiving in what manner any of
tlio powors given to tlio ixecuuvo aione
could bo farther usefully employed in
bringing this unfortunate controversy to a
satisfactory termination, the subject was by
my predecessor referred to Congress, as one
calliiiL' for its interposition. In accordance
with tho clearly understood wishos of the
Logisituto, another and formal domand
for satisfaction has been made upon tho
Mexican Government, with what success
the documents now commnnicated will
show. On a careful and deliberato exam
ination of their contents, and considering
tho spirit manifested by tho Mexican Gov
ernment, it has becomo my painful duty to
return the subject, as it now stands, to Con
gress, to whom it belongs, to decide upon
mo time, me mouc, anu tno measure ol re
dress. Whatever may bo your decision,
it shall bo faithfully executed, confident
that it will bo characterized by that moder
ation and justice, which will, I trust, under
all circumstances, govern tho councils of
our country.
The balance in the Treasury on the 1st
day of January, 1837, was forty five mill
ions, nine hundred nnd sixty-eight thou
sand five hundred and twenty-three dollars.
Tho receipts during the present year from
all sotirces.Jncluding the amount of Trea
sury notes issued arc estimated at twenty
three millions four hundred and ninety-nine
thousand, nine hundred and eighty-one dol
lars, constituting an a'ggregrate of sixty-nine
millions four hundred and sixty-eight thou
sand five hundred and four dollars. Of this
amount, about thirty-five millions, two hun
dred and eighty-one thousand three hundred
& sixty-ono'dollars will havc4been expended
at the end of the year on appropriations
made by Congress; and the residue, amoun
ting to thirty-four millions, one hundred and
eighty-seven thousand one hnndrcd and
forty-three dollars, will be tho nominal bal
ance in the 1 reasury on the first of January
next. Hut of that sum, only one million
eighty-five thousand four hundred and nine
ty eight dollars is considered as immedi
ately available for, and applicable to, pub
lic purposes. Those portions of it, which
will be for some time unavailable', consist
chiefly of sums deposited with the States,
and due lrom the lormcr depositc banks.
The details upon this subject will be found
in the animal report of the Secretary of the
1 reasury.
The amount of Treasury notes, which it
will be necessary to issue during the year
on account of thoso hinds being unavailable
will, it is supposed, not exceed four and a
halt millions, It seemed proper, in the
condition of the country, to have the esti
mates on all subjects made as low as prac
ticable, withoutprejudicc to any great pub,
lie measures. I he Departments were
therefore, desired to prepare their estimates
accordingly, and I am happy to find that
they have been able to fraduate them on so
economical a scale. In the great and often
unexpected fluctuations to which the reve
nue is subjected, it Is not possible to com
pute the receipts beforehand with great
certainty; but should they not differ essen
tially lrom present anticipations, and should
the appropriations not much exceed the
estimates, no difficulty seems likely to hap
pen in delraying the current expenses Willi
promptitudo and fidelity.
Notwithstanding the great embarrass
ments which have recently occupied in
commercial affairs, and tho liberal indul
gence which, in consequence of those em
barrassments, lias been extended to both
the merchants and tho banks, it is gratify
ing to be able to anticipate that tho Treasu
ry notes, which have been issued during
the present year, will be redeemed, and
that the resources cf the Treasuiy without
;inv resort to loans or increased taxes, will
piovo ample for defraying all charged im
posed on it during 1838.
1 he lloport ot tne oeereiary oi tue i rea-
suavy will attord you a more minuio expos
ition of all matters connected with the ad
ministration of the finances dnring tho cur
rent year; a period which for the amount of
public moneys disbursed and deposited with
tho States, a's well as the financial difficul
ties encountered and overcome, has tew
parallels in our history.
Your attontton was, at the last session,
invited to thenecesity of additional legisla
tive provisions in respect lo tne collection,
safe-kcoping, and transfer of the public mo
ney. jNo law having been men maiureu,
and not understanding the proceedings of
Congress as intended to be final, it becomes
my duty again to bring tho subject to your
On that occasion, threo modes of perfor
ming this branch of the public service were
presented for your consideration. Theso
wore, the creation of a national bank; the
revival, with modifications, of the doposito
system established by tho act of the 23d of
June, 1830, permitting the use of the pub
lic moneys by the banks, and the discon
tinuance of tho use of such institutions for
tlio purposes referred to, with suitable pro
.,i;nn. fnr ihiir accomplishment through
the agency of public officers. Consideimg j
thd opinions of both Houses of Congress on
tho two first propositions as expressed in
the negative, in which I entirely concur, it
is unnecessary for me again to recur to
hfim. In respect to the last, you havo had
an opportunity sinco your adjournment, not
only to test still further tho expediency of
the measure, by the continued practical o
pcration of such parts of it as are now in
force; but also to discover what should
over bo sought for and regard with tho ut
most deference the opinions and wishes
of the peoplo. Tho national will is tho
supremo law of tho Republic, and, on all
suujects witnm the limits oflus constitu
tional powers, should be faithfully obeyed
by the public servant. (
hinco the measure in question was sub
milted to your consideration, most of you
hayc enjoyed tho advantage of personal
communication with your constituents. For
one State only has an election been held for
tne federal Government; but the early day
at which it took place, deprives the moA.
sure under consideration of much 'of the sup-
jnii ji iingiii oiucrwiso nave derived trom
the result. Local elections for State ofii
cors have, however, been held In several of
the istates, at which the expediency of tho
plan proposed by the Executive has been
moro or less discussed. You will, I am
confident, yield to their results the respect
due to every expression of the public voice.
Dcsiiing, however, to arrive at truth and a
just view of tho subjectin all its bearings,
;uu vyui at wo anino ume remember, tliat
questions of far deeper and more immedi
ate local interest than the fiscal plans of the
National Treasury wero involved in those
Above all wc cannot overlook the stri
king fact, that there were at tho time in
those States more than one hundred and
sixty millions of bank capital, of which large
ponions were suujcctto actual torleilure
other large portions upheld only by special
and . limited legislative indulgences and
most of it, if not all, to a greater or less ex
tent, dependent for a continuance of its cor
porate existence upon the will of the Stato
Legislature's to be then chosen. Apprised
of this circumstance, you willjudgo wheth
ther it is not most probable that the peculiar
condition of that vast interest, in these .re
spects, the extent to , which it, has beeii
spread through all the ramifications of soci
oty, its direct connection with the then pen
ding elections, and the feelings it was cal
culated to infuse into the canvass, has ex
ercised a far greater influence over the re
sult, than any which could possibly have
been produced py a conflict of opinion iii
respect to a question in the administration
of the General Government, more remote
and far less important in its bearings upoit
that interest.
I havo no formed reason to change my
own opinion as to the expediency of adopt
ing the system proposed, being perfectly
satisfied that there will be neither stability
nor safety, either in the fiscal affairs of the
government, or in the pecuniary transac1
tions of individuals and corporations, so
long as a connection exists between them,
which, like the past, offers such strong in
ducements to make them the subjects of po
litical agitation. Indeed I am more than
ever convinced of the dangers to which the
free and unbiassed exercise of political o
pinion tho only sure foundation and safe
guard of republican government would bo
exposed by any further increase of tho al
ready overgrown influence of corporate au
thorities. I cannot, therefore, consistently
with my views of duty, advise a renewal of
a connection which circumstances have dis
solved. The discontinuance of the tiSo of.Statd
banks for fiscal purposes ought not to be re
garded as a measure of hostility towards
those institutions. Banks properly estab1
lished and conducted, are highly useful td
the business of the country, and will doubt'
less continue to exist in tho States, so long
as they conform to their laws, and are found
to be safe and boneficial. How they
should bo croatcd, what privileges they
should enjoy,' under what responsibilities
they should act, and to what restrictions
they should be subject, aro questions which,
as I observed on a previous occasion, belong
to the Stato to decide. Upon their rights,
or the exercise of them, the General Gov
ernment can havo no motive to encroach.
Its duty toward them is well performed,
when it refrains from legislating for their
special benefit because such, legislation
would violate the spirit of the Constitution,
and be unjust to other interests: when it ta
kes no steps to impair their usefulness,
but so manages its' own affairs as to mako
it the interest of thoso institutions to
strengthen and improve their condition for
the security and welfare of tho community
at large. They have no right to insist on
a connection with tho federal Government,
nor on the use of the public money for their
own benefit.
The object of the measure under consid
eration is to avoid for the future a compul
sory connection of this kind. It proposed
to place tho General Government, in regard
to iho essential points or tho collection, safe
keeping, and transfer of the public inoiiey