OCR Interpretation

The daily union. [volume] (Washington [D.C.]) 1845-1857, December 24, 1846, Image 2

Image and text provided by Library of Congress, Washington, DC

Persistent link: https://chroniclingamerica.loc.gov/lccn/sn82003410/1846-12-24/ed-1/seq-2/

What is OCR?

Thumbnail for

I TWK.vi v-miftTii COKOUM,
I? ?IU| icwtUU.
I The journal of yesterday was read and approved.
I Mr BIIEESE presented the petition of J'hilip I'earce,
l? praying a pre-emption right; which was referred to the
f Committee on 1'uhlic Lands.
| Mr. CASS presented the petition of Naomi Davis,
i widow of General Daniel Davia, asking for a pension ;
F wliich was referred to the Committee 011 Pensions.
THE war Willi MEXICO.
[ Mr. J. M. CLAYTON presented a memorial from citif
zens of the Slate of Delaware, praying Congress to use
t speedy and efficient means for terminating the war with
1 Mexico, in an honorable peace.
If Mr. CLAYTON remarked that the memorial was 1111*
merously signed by men of lioth political parties. These
petitioners were hot men who have any conscientious
i1 scruples about engaging in war, when war berume ne
tCfUMiry ; l?Ul Iliry BWHC iikh.) iin filling OS men
uig the interests of all American citizens at heart, aiul
prayed that all projmr measures might he taken, lor the
purpose of bringing about a speedy and honorable peace,
out in the notation in which he stood as one of the senators
of the United States, he felt bound to say that he did
not eee any efficient means of prosuring an honorable
I peace, except by fairly lighting out the war. He should,
therefore, without any hesitation or reluctance whatever,
give his support to id! measures which might he proposed
by those wlio ought best to know what was indispensable
for carrying on vigorously, and to a successful termination,
the existing war. l(e said nothing now about
furnishing the means for purchasing foreign territory, or
in any way aggrandizing tne country; he spoke simply of
the supplies which wen* necessary for carrying on the
war; and, in this respect, he should not be a whit behind
his colleagues in sustaining the efforts of the Executive.
He hail heard it stated, and had seen the charge in many of
the public prints, that there exist in parts of the country
factions devoted to |>arty interests and hostile to the true
interests of the nation, and ready to take part with Mexico
in the existing war. lie did not believe a
syllable of it. lie did not believe there existed
any such party. He did not mean to say that there
initfht not be some individuals who entertain such views
ana feelings; but if there were any he had no doubt they
were very lew. That there was aiiy such feeling in the
great party which was opposed to nim in political opinions,
or that there were portions of that party prepared to
take part with the enemies ol the country, he did not believe
it; he rejected the supposition even", as degrading to
the American character. Last of all did he believe that
the gieut whig party of the country was ready to es|>ouse
the cause of any foreign power at war with this
country. He held, and he firmly believed, that
alituniirh thrre was a minority of their noliticul
opponents at this time taking put in the counsels of the
tuition, yet that the whig imrtv were, and did, constitute
at this moment a majority of the people of tins country ;
and that they were capable of lending themselves in aid
of a foreign "|>o\ver was impossible, fiut the charge had
been made that such a party existed, and it wight be
true that those who made the charge desired to bring
about that very result; it might be that the wish was the
father to the thought; but no such accusation?no such
raillery or calumny would ever drive the whig jmrty of
this nation into hostility to the government of the country
in the prosecution of a war w ith a foreign nation.
With regard to the means to be employed in the prosecution
of the war, those who understood the subject better
than he did might devise the means of bringing about a
speedy and honorable peace with Mexico; ne was not
prepared to speak on this subject at present, but would
only say generally that he was ready to eo-o|>erate wjth
all who could produce measures aiming and calculated, in
the view of responsible men, to effect an honorable
j>eace. But in his humble opinion, at present it appeared
to be their duty to strengthen the arm of the government
by every fair and honorable menus in prosecuting
the war, so far as in their power. There were some
topics connected with this subject which he would be
gla to discuss, and he intended to avail himself of an
opportunity to do so at some future day; but not now.
On the present petition he thought it a duty to those who
presented the memorial to say tnis much with regard to
what he oetieveu to tie tneir objects ana opinions; ana
now he moved that this memorial lie upon the table.
Mr. MOREHEAD (on leave) introduced a hill to extend
the time for selling the lands granted to the Kentucky
institution for the deaf and dumb ; and moved its
reference to the Committee on Private Land Claims.
? After a brief conversation between Mr. SEVIER and
^ Mr. MOREHEAD, with reference to the appropriate
committee of reference, the bill was referred to the Committee
on Public Lands.
Mr. ASHLEY (on leave) introduced a bill to grant a
quantity of public land to the State of Arkansas, for purposes
of internal improvement; which was read twice
and referred to the Committee on Public Lands.
Mr. LEWIS, from the Committee on Finance, reported
back the bill for the establishment of a branch of the
mint of the United States in the city of New York, without
Mr. L. gave notice of his intention to call this bill up
immediately after the Christinas holydays.
Mr. SPEIGHT, from the same committee, reported
back the bill_ for the establishment of a branch of the
mint of the United States in the city of Charleston, S. C\,
without amendment.
Air. S. gave a similar notice to that of Mr. Lewis, in
reference to this bill.
Mr. ASHLEY, from the Committee on the Judiciary,
to which had been referred the bill from the House for
the admission of the State of Iowa into the Union, reported
the same without amendment, and asked for its immediate
The bill having been read?
Mr. YULEE submitted the following amendment:
Provided, That nothing herein contained shall be construed
as authorizing any diversion of the lauds at any time
granted to the said Territory or .Stab- of Iowa from the purposes
directed in the act making such grants.
Mr. YULEE desired to offer that amendment simply for
the purpose of indicating his own opinion, ii|?on what
seemed to be a material point. Under the act of 18-11,
an appiopriation of five hundred thousand acres of public
lauds was made to each new State, to be applied to
purposes of internal improvement. By the constitution
of the Statf of Iowa, the appropriation to that State had
been diverted form this original purpose to the purposes of
education. He was not apprised whether any other sen
ator concurred with him in opinion, and thought it not
improbable that few would agree in his amendment;
but he still desired to propose it, as a means of indicating
his own individual dissent to the diversion of the grant
which would follow an unqualified assent to this part of
the constitution of the new State.
Mr. SPEIGHT called for_ the reading of the clause in
the constitution of Iowa referring to this subject. After
the request had been complied with,
Mr. ASHLEY remarked that he was sensible that
the committee . had had under consideration the subject
of the diversion of the grant of land; but
he believed that when the grant was made the
people of Iowa constituted a sovereign State, and that
they were therefore the most proper persons to dispose of
it. ' He believed that the disposition which they proposed
to make of it was far better than that contemplated
by Congress. The education of the rising generation
Was a far more important object than the tilling up of
valleys and the levelling of mountains. Upon the one
depended commerce?upon the other the existence of the
government itself. So far from objecting to an amendment
similar to the one brought forward by the gentleman
from Florida, he was willing to acquiesce in any
general law which should change the mode of appropriating
the public lands to the internal improvement
of the State, and authorize their appropriation as Iowa
had appropriated them. His opinion was, that she had
shown more wisdom in her appropriation than Congress
had in directing the income ami interest of these lands to
be appropriated in perpetuity to education. He believed
that the State Itself knew best what use to
nake of the grant of the govcrfiment. The situation
of the country might be such that they deemed it improper
to make an appropriation of this large grunt to the
purpose of internal improvement. He knew hut little
about the situation of the country, hut suggested that it
might be sueh that they would consider this an improper
appropriation. If they considered that the grant could be
appropriated most advantageously to the education of the
rising generation, Congress ought not to interfere in the
matter. Some gentleman better informed than himself
might tell how it was possible to enforce the application
of the grant exclusively to the purpose of internal improvement.
It was made for State purposes, and he ap
prehended there was no 100 I0 by which they could enforce
the execution ot' a trust He apprehended that
when Congress makes a grant of this kind to a sovereign
State the right was full and perfect on their part to
appropriate it to any object which they chose. Admit
that the amendment pass, would it change the power on
the part of the State of Iowa in any way or particular?
Some lawyer more versed in the varied resources of his
profession might point out a way, hut he knew of none
He believed that Congress could in no way enforce such
a trust He hoped, therefore, that the amendment would
_ __ ir- *1
not prevail, but that Congress Would leave tlie Slate t
use the appropriation in a way so iwisc worthy as thi
which they had promised. '
Mr. YULEE. desired to have the section of the law rt
fairing lo the appropriation read. The Secretary accord
inglv read the following pannage from the act of 1841
"And there .shall In*, and hereby is, granted to each nei
Stale tliaf shall lie hereafter uilniitteil into the L'uion, u|jo
such admission, so inneli land, iueliidlng sueh quuiil
ty as may have been granted to such Stale before ila in
mission, ami while under n Territorial government, tiir III
}>urpo?cs ol' internal improvement aforesaid, as slutU nntk
lve hundred thousand acres of laud, to be selected and l<
eated as aforesaid,"
From thin clause of the act of 1841, he proceeded,
would be seen that the grant w? made expressly for th
pur|??se of internal improvement; and it was admitte
that, by the constitution of Iowa, the grunt wasdiverte
from ils original purpose. Now, he would admit that tli
puipose to which it was proposed to apply this grant wa
a very proper one iu itself. He admitted that the dilfu
sion of intellnreiice. and nrovision lor general educatioi
was it very pro|?er and commendable care of legislation
and if the specific appropriations which hud been mud
lo them for the use of schools win insufficient, h
would readily vote in favor of a distinct apprc
|uiation of half a million or a million of acre* mori
oy Congress, for the purpose* of education, lii
he was not willing that a special grant by Con
gress should be diverted from the purpose for whic
it wan originally intended in the manner which was not
proposed. He was for initiating upou the proper execn
tion of the trust. It was the design of Congress in thu
setting iqwrt a portion of the public lauds for each net
State, that the proceeds thereof should be applied to tli
construction ol roads and the improvement ol rivers an
harbors, with a view of creating facilities to settlemci
and commerce to the extent to w hich its proprietary it
teres! in the lands of the new States rendered eontribn
turn to those purposes proper. What would he the cot
sequence of the proposed diversion of the grant1)
redly after getting possession of the grant, the Stat
would lie making continual applications to Congress fc
appropriations for the very purpose to which Congou
originally appropriated this laud. He was unwilliiq
therefore, to yield his assent, humble as it was, to th
diversion proposed.
Mr. WOOUHIUDCK conceived that there was muc
foundation for the remarks of tlu gentleman from Flor
da. This giant was not made by ( ongress without cot
sideration. The country |M?s?cseed large tracts of pul
lie lands, and Congress thought that an appropriation i
this kind would have an immediate and powerful teudei
cy to improve the value, anil consequently raise ttie pru
of these lands. Thin motive induced Congress to tnak
the grant. Now, were they pre|iared to divert the grar
from that original purpose? A question at once arose s
to the conqietency ot the grantee to ettect a diversro
like that. How a trust could thus he diverted did nr
come within his province to decide; hut he held that
Slate was not competent to divert a trust from the pui
poses for which it was designed.
Mr. ASHI.KY was highly gratified to see that low
was ahout to dispose of the public lands in the manni
proposed. So far as his own observation went, he b<
lieved that funds appropriated to the puqiose of interns
improvement in new States had generally been anythin
but a blessing to these States. New States were not in
situation to use an appropriation of that kind proper!;
They almost necessarily squandered the whole capital i
once. He could not persuade himself that any very grci
advantage would he derived by the people of Iowa fror
the proceeds of the grant, if applied to the purposes of in
ternal improvement. Posterity would certainly be beta
tiled but very little. But here was a provision by w hic
the interest of the fund would be set apart tor the goo
of the inhabitants of the State in all time to come?for th
education of the whole mass of the people. In order t
have made an appropriate disposition of the public lnndi
Congress should first have known what was the peculiu
situation of that State. But what had been the t\peri
ence of new States in regard to appropriations for inter
nal improvements? How far had a few thousand acre
of land been found to. go towards bringing about then
improvements? How tar in Indiana? How far in man
other States which he might mention? Why, the inter
nal improvements were hardly commenced with these ap
lMiijuiuuijiin. .Ill muiic; aiuiun uiiwnii ana;
He would ask for the >eas and nays on the question, fo
the imniose of obtaining the sentiment* of the Senate.
Mr. Yl'LEE said that he did not propose any amenil
ment to the constitution of Iowa. He only desired a siin
pie amendment to the bill for the admission of that Stati
which might then 50 hack to the House and receive thei
concurrence, if it concurred. There the matter woul
end. Nor was he willing that the true value of th<
grant should be lost sight of. Admitting that the lan
should be sold at two dollars per acre, half a million o
acres would yield a million of dollars; and this amoun
ought to |>ay for all necessary improvements of harbor
and rivers in Iowa. It was the lull contribution of th
government for the purpose; and he could see no reasoi
for suffering it to he diverted. *
Mr. BREESE thought that the passage of this hit
would show, without any other act on the part of Con
gress, that they assent lo the proposed diversion.
Mr. ASHLEY* believed that the gentleman from Flori
da was mistaken in one jiarticulur. He had suppose
that the amendment might go to the House of Represents
tives and receive their concurrence without any trouble
He would inform the gentleman that this very questio1
was brought forward in bold relief in the House, an
there fully discussed; and he apprehended that if th
Senate made this amendment, it would he rejected by th
riuu:*r. rui 1111 n ir<wmi, u mere were ihj uiiicr, it
should strongly oppose the amendment.
Mr. WESTOln' was in favor of giving Iowa ex
pressly the right to appropriate this fund to the purpose
of education instead of internal improvement, and sail
he took occasion to urge the importance of this point he
fore the committee. Hut no such express authority wa
deemed necessary. He thought that an appropriation to
the purpose of internal improvement was liable to b
squandered?profligated, even, by speculators and pol
iticians, who infested new States for the promotion o
their own private interests. An education fund, how
ever, would atford no such facilities for the advancetnen
of private interests. He conceived that the legislature
had done wisely, therefore, in appropriating the grant t<
the purposes of education.
Mr. YULKE did not think that the action of the Hons
was to he considered a material point. But he repeatei
that the present inhabitants of Iowa had no right to di
vert the appropriation made hy Congress from the pur
pose to which it was originally designed. The grant wa
made, not for the benefit of the present population of tha
State merely, but with reference also to the good of thos
who were to follow them in the settlement of the State
Mr. WESTCOTT repeated that he was opposed to th
appropriation of public lands to the purpose of interna
improvement, the same to be disposed of by the individ
ual States themselves. He would not give his own State
if he had the power to-morrow?and he feared not ti
own it?a million acres of public land, and restrict its ap
plication to internal improvements
i ut; (jut'tiiiuii wiun wen i?tKt ii upon hip auopiion oi uii
amendment proposed by Mr. Yi i.ttc; and it was decide!
in the negative, as follows:
YKAS?Messrs. Wootlbridgi'jnnil Yulee?2.
NAYS?Messrs. Arcber, A?hlcy, Ateliison, Atlurton
Badger, Hagbv, Burrow, Benton, Berrien, Breesr, Bright
Butler, Calhoun, Cass, Chalmers, Thomas Clayton, Join
M. Clayton, Corwin, Crittenden, Davis, Diekihon, Ilix
Lvaus, Greene, Houston, Jariyigin, Johnson, oi' Maryland
Johnson, of Louisiana, Lewis, Manguin, More hand, "Vilas
Husk. Simple, Sevier, Speight, Sturgeon, Turncy, I'phatu
and Westeott??10.
The bill was then ordered to a third leading; and was
by unanimous consent, read a third time and passed.
Mr. BAGBY (on leave) introduced a joint resolutioi
explanatory of an act for the relief of Mary Ann Linton
which was read twice, and referred to the Committee oi
Mr. JOHNSON, of Louisiana, from the Committee oi
Pensions, to whom was referred the hill for the relief o
Joseph Morrison, reported the same without amend
Mr. J. also, from the same committee, to whom wa
referred the bill for the relief of John Clark, rejsirte 1 tin
same without amendment.
Mr. ATCIIINON, from the same committee, reported i
bill granting arrearages of pension to Hugh VV. Dobbin
an officer of the late war; which was read and passed t<
,i i -i:?.
mr ftmnm rnwimy,.
Mr. N1LES, from theCommittce on the Post Otficeam
Post Roads, reported a joint resolution for the relief o
Davit) Shaw and Solomon P. Corson; which was reai
and passed to the second reading.
On motion by Mr. 8EMPLE, the joint resolution 1i
amend the constitution of the United States, introduced b
him on the 22-1 inst., and laid on the table, was taken u
and referred to the Committee on the Judiciary.
Mr. 8EMPLE submitted the following resolution
which was considered by unanimous consent, and agree
W'noferrf, That the Committee on Patents and the Psteti
Oftiec be instructed to inquire into the expediency of
Amending the patent laws as to make n patent when gram
ed valid as to the public until vacated by due process <
law, and that in all cases positive injunctions issue again'
those infringing the patent right, until such patent be so \ i
Mr. WOODBR1DOE anhmittel the following reaolu
lion; which wa? conaiderad by uiutmmou* conaent, an
itrreerl to:
Rttolvtd, That tha Committ"* on Military Affair* l>* ir
(i 4tM|0U-<l to inquiae iut<> d)n expediency of making pu>vi?nii
it S lor tli.- .'UHttrticuon of additional works mi Foil Cialiut, lit*a
I tbe outlet of Luke Huron, unit of connecting tin- same will
,. j the iniliiary wollcs ul timid liill, in the Stun- of Michigan
f" with leave to report by bid or otherwise.
I And bt it fuithrr rttUved, That the communications fron
'> the War Department of the iluto of April 17, IHto, of tin
i lib lAu.oioU/i, la lb, and of tbc -Dili January, l?Ui, on itn
zv same subject, bo referred to the same committee.
r On motion, it was ordered that when tlie Senate ad
J j jourtt it shall be until Monday next.
,.j 1'he Senate then adjourned.
it | The journal having been read?
'[ Mr BARCLAY MARTIN begged and obtained th
11 j indulgence of the House whilst he corrected an error ii
e : the report of Ins remarks the other day in the Kultunu
" hilc/liireiutr. He was incorrectly represented as bavin;
'* made a reference to Mr. pettit, which he regarded a
' doing injustice to that gentleman, who was not in th
* j House at the time; and the reference was to anothe
*: taemher.
* 1 Mr. NORRIS asked tlie unanimous consent of th
1 House to introduce a bill for the settlement of the claim
of New Hampshire against the United Stales.
Mr. COLLAMER objected.
|"t ! admission ok iowa into the union.
A. ! A message was received from the Senate nnnouneim
; that said house hud passed the bill to admit the Slate o
[(t j Iowa into the Union.
a ; termination ok debate.
'C I The Sl'EAKKK stated the lirsi business in order to b
d i the resolution submitted yesterday by the geutlcma.
11 trom reniiHVlvaiiui [Mr. t. J. Im;i:k*om.j jimpoHiiiK i
' terminate the debute upon the resolutions referring th
I- President's message at't o'clock, u. iu., on this day, un
!' the amend meat submitted thereto by the gentleman fror
' | Georgia [Mr. .S. Jones] lixing the time ut t.'> minutes paa
e | tj o'clock, in . instead of 'J o'clock, p. in.
?r j A motion wa* made to postpone Ine further consider!)
w j tion of the resolution until to-morrow. The qucslio
5> upon which being put, no quorum voted.
>e Tellers being demanded and ordered, Messrs Bar
rinueu and Couu were appointed. s
h 'l'he tellers reported vi in the ulfirmative, und 3'J inth
i- negative. So the motion was adopted.
'* bl'SI'KNSION or HL'I.ES.
'j- Mr. ROBERT SMITH moved that the rules be sun
(tended in order to allow the States to be called for ik
" titions and resolutions not giving rise to debate, ami giv
: ing opportunity to submit notices of bills; which nui
t lion hok iosi, oniv .is voting hi me amrniaiive.
w j < hi motion of Mr. RATHBUN. the House resolved n
j self into Committee of the Whole on the state of th
,; Union, (Mr Boyd in the chair.)
u J thr. war with mexico.
r- | The CHAIRMAN stated the business pending to b
the resolutions submitted bv the gentleman from I'enn
a j svlvania, [Mr. Brodiiead.J referring the President's men
:r sage to the several standing committees.
!- Mr. GORDON then addressed the committee. He sai
*1 that he had sought the floor in that stage of the dehat
g more for the purpose of making a candid avowal of hi
a opinions in regard to the war, and the ijuestions connerte
f. with it, than with the view of entering upon an;, claim
it rate argument on the various points raised during'the dis
it cussion. Before proceeding, however, to that can lid ex
11 pression of his opinions, he begged leave to nav his re
i- epects to the opposition party. They found the whi|
i-1 party of the country opposed to the prosecution of th
h war in which the nation was now engaged against Me.x
d j ico. The orators and scribes of that party in that Hone
e ; and through the press denounced that war as unjust am
o I aggressive.
*. J Mr., J R. INGERSOLL. Permit hip to make one re
r | mark. 1 have always considered myself a steadfast ad
i- hcrent of the whig |?rty, and I speak not only my owi
' sentiments
? Mr. GORDON. I cannot allow the gentleman to mnki
e a speech?(cries of "go on.")
> Mr. INGERSOLI,?but also the sentiments of?(crip
of "order.")
-ri... ruiiBMAV .v.. >i r v.
i in: viiam.'ia.v uic ucin uumi! irum i^fV
' ! York yield the floor!
r Mr. GORDON. Ohl vm, certainly.
>1 r. IXGERSOLL. f say, then, tliat the whig nnrty i
- | not opposed to the prosecution of the war against Mexico
' (Cries of "good"?"vou hark out at last!")
! Mr. GORDON. The gentleman then is an honorabl
r exception to the general rule which I have laid down.
d Mr. ROLIjOCK. Mr. Chairman, I
e Mr. GORDON. I really cannot yield the floor,
d Air. POLLOCK?(still insisting to be heard)?I onlyf
(cries of "order ")
t The CHAIRMAN. The gentleman from New Yorl
s has the floor.
e| Mr. GORDON proceeded. He repeated that the oppo
n j sition party generally on that floor and throughout th<
i country were opposed to the prosecution of the war ii
d l which the nation was at that moment engaged. Tho*
- that were not in that category would one day find thei
position not very comfortable. They were engaged in ;
- war with Mexico. Their army was in the enemy'
d country winning battles and conquering provinces. Thei
i- navy was at sea blockading the ports of Mexico, am
i. sweeping her commerce?if commerce she had?from th<
n ocean. The attention of the governments of Kurojie wa
d directed to that war. They were watching its progress
e and amcionslv speculating on its results.
e Mr. W. HUNT. I beg to call the attention of my col
e league
Mr. GORltOX. 1 cannot y ield to these interruptions.
Mr. W. HUNT still insisted on being heard,
s The CHAIRMAN reminded the gentleman that tin
J member from New York hud not yielded the floor.
Mr. GORDON proceeded. The cabinet* of the Oh
s World, he had said, were speculating on the progressani
r probable results of the war; not only as the results wer
e likely to atrect the business, and commerce, and the na
- tions of the earth, but as they would bear upon the gene
f ral progress and well-being of free institutions amoiurs
- men. Such was the interesting crisis in their foreign re
t 1 lations?such the interesting position of the great causi
e [ of human liberty itself?when u party in the L'nitei
j | States, represented on that floor, was found setting itsel
up in opposition to the war, and denouncing it witl
e the utmost vehemence as aggressive and unjust on tin
i part of the United States. How did it happen
- lie asked, that in every war in which the countn
- had been engaged from the revolution down, tha
? party had been opposed to the war in which the countrj
t happened to be engaged for the time being .' This courst
e of conduct had been uniformly pursued by that party
not only when the government was engaged in prosecuting
e | a war, hut even when, on any occasion, the foreign re
1 j lations of the United States assumed a threatening as
- | pect, the same party was found in the same attitude o
, hostility to their own government. The Creek war?the
> Seminole war?the Black Hawk war?every Indian war
- and every conflict with -civilized nations, either in the
held or iii the cabinet, hill found resolute opponents it
e that party. What was the cause of such a state o
i things ? There must surely be some weighty reason a
the bottom of all that op|K>sition. He was utterly at;
loss to explain otherwise the uniform result to which lit
had alluded. He could hardly ascribe it to the prosecu
, iion 01 a mere game 01 pariy |k>iiucs. tie was incline
i to believe that the opposition were animated by a desire
, to change the whole system of government under whicl
this country now happily existed. If he were mistaker
?if the opposition had no other design than to cart e on
' a paltry game of party politics, they would be entitled to
just about as much credit as was the gentleman who
' played cards on Sunday. [A laugh.] The gentlcmar
irom Tennessee [Mr. Gentry] had used the. following
| language in his speech the other day: "But the tirsi
i question Mr. G. desired to ask was, How did this wai
; come into existence ? By whom had it been made?" How
i the war was prosecuted, and how it might result, wcrr
questions of no importance, it seemed. It was ol
i infinite importance to the gentleman, however to
f know how the war had begun?whether it was begun by
. the President of the United .States, usurping authority, 01
by the Congress of the United States, having power te
s declare war. He (Mr. G.) would answer the gentleman,
e that the war was begun by neither the Congress of tin
United States nor the Executive, but by Mexico herself,
i The gentleman from Tennessee himself had bornt
, I testimony before the world to that very fact of the
> commencement of the war by Mexico. On the 13th ol
i May last, a bill was passed in which it was declared
1 (hat this war was "begun by the act of Mexico, and
f j voting supplies for its prosecution. Did not the gentleI
' man vote for that hill, preamble anil all! Certainly he
j did. Now, that measure passed the House with onK
fourteen voting against it; and it passed the Senate af[
most by an unanimous vote?he believed there were but
n two votes against it in that body?so that it might be
y ' almost said that it passed the Senate by acclamntion
P 1 Thus went out to the people and the world the fact thai
the war was begun by the act of Mexico. But he (Mr.
O.) would not rest on that fact merely for proof that the
| war hail been begun bv Mexico. l,et tbem reter to the
d j history of the case. Whatever may have been the intenI
tions of Mexico, the first overt act of war was the order?
i issued on the -1th of April, 1-M. by the government o
n ! farc ies, to attack the American forces by every mean?
? I justified by war. There was the first overt act of war
" The American forces were, on the contrary, enjoined b)
their government to observe a pacific course. They wen
instructed not to make any aggressions; and with thest
instructions, and with such intentions, the army of th?
j United States, under the command of General Taylor
was ordered to march to the Rio Grande. Now, on th(
- 1st of May, lst'i, in pursuance of the orders issued b\
d the government of Mexico, a body of one hundred an*
fifty Mexicans, at Fort Walker, or the place now knowr
i- by that name, slaughtered some ten Texas rangers
i >| pi I led American blood upoa American hoi I On the
' -th of Mas, the army of (Senera! Taylor wan attacked on
1 its return to Jhe fort opimsite to Matamoros, ami the
> battle of Palo Alto ensued; and again on the *.?tl?
1 the battle of Ueseca de la I'alrna wan fought, the
American forces being attacked by the Mexican arL.
my. That was the coininenceinent of the war. Mexico
had thrown away the scabbard, and refused to treat for
peace. Willi all these facts?with these overt acts ofWai
staring the gentleman in the fare, he got up in the American
Congress, before the world, and gravely asked,
"Who commenced the war?the President or the Con{ress
of the United States f" vDid not the gentleman
now?or ought lie not to have known?did not the Vork
know that there was no disposition on the |>art of the
United States to engage in war with Mexico, but that
ever)' sacrifice hut that of honor itself had been made in
f order to keep on terms of good neighborhood with that
ri (tower ? It was true that the President had anticipated an at I
tuck from Mexico. He was foi warned that such an atg
tack would be made, and the army of (Sen. Tavtor wai
s accordingly ordered to advance from Corpus Christi tc
e the hank of the river opposite Mutuiuoros, within cam
r uoiiading distance of tile enemy's forces, so that ho
movements might be watched. Trie attack wan utade by
e Mexico. She crooned the boundary of Texan ani attacka
ed the American forces upon soil not occupied by Mexican
forces or Mexican settlements, but in the occujwtioti
of the American army. (jp to the time of occupation ol
that territory by the American army, that territory war
claimed by Texas and was within her bounds. I'm
farther to illustrate the |ioiut us to who began the war, it
was necessary to go hack and examine the grounds ol
the war thus begun by Mexico herself. From the batth
of San Jacinto, down t? the annexation of Texas to tht
I'm ted States, Texas clauned to the Kio Grande; and or.
the other hand, Mexico claimed to the Sabine. Texa?
u was acknowledged to be inde|iem!cnt by the UuitMl
* States, and by several of the governments of Europe
d and during these nine years she claimed to the banki
0 of the Kio Grand:.* as her western boundary?Mexio
,l insisting up to the Sabine as the houudary. Thui
stood the claim of boundary on the part of Texas
c and the claim of Mexico to the territory as far as tht
" Sabine. That was the position of ulliiirs when Texa.was
united to the United States While annexation wui
* in progress, Mexico declared that, it ^consummated, tha
measure would be regarded as a casus belli, ami thut wa
e would be waged. Mexico had never put the war on any
other ground than that of the annexation of Texas. She
hail declared beforehand that if Texas were annexed, sin
would wage war for the recovery of that province. Hu
j Texas was annexed. That then I They found the Min
.. inn r in rorcign i\u<ur? iit wvsicu uwmnng 10 in* i ni
ted Suites milliliter, before the orders were issued, tha
annexation was regarded us a cause of war, ami that wa;
[. would ensue. Then on the 4 th of April, IS It), in pur
suance (rt that declaration, the orders were issued to attack
the American forces by every ineuus justified hi
w ar. To these orders immediately succeeded the attack
to which hi' had already alluded. Now, the oppositioi
' could not condemn the war as unjust and aggressive or
the jiurt of the United States, upon the ground that an
nexation was the cause of war?because many of tha
party?he was not sure but a majority of that party?
u voted for that very act of annexation. If they condemne
e l the war us aggressive on the ground of annexation
s they condemned themselves, lie believed that no 0111
d would stultify himself at that day bv getting up and as
" sorting before any community out of Mexico that annexu
ation was the cause of war. Certainly they could no
do it without condemning themselves. What, then, dii
- they find in orJer to justify the charge that the war waf
aggressive and uniust on the part of the United Stales
e Wliy , they siid that the territory between the Nuecei
and the Rio Grande was not a |>art of Texas proper?tha
c I it was .Mexican territory?and that the I resident of tut
' United States, in sending the American forces to occnpt
la |k wit ion beyond the Nueces, or at least on .the banks
I of the Rio Grande, made a hostile invasion into the ter
ritory of Mexico, and that that was the cause of the war
n ' Why. Mexico must he under many obligations to the opposition
party in this country for discovering; causes ol
f war that had never onre' occurred to herself! Bui
at the time the American forces advanced to Fort Brown,
* I and the Mexican government issued orders to attack the
I \merican forces, Mexico could not have known that the
r | United States army had advanced from Corpus Christi ti
the Rio Grande; hut that territory wa* claimed by Texas
it was claimed by the United States. Mexico never claims
ed the territory between the Nueces anil the Rio Grande
' otherwise than through her claim ui? to the Sabine, ineluding
the whole of Texas. But. admitting that the tere
ritorv was in'dispute, it then became neutral ground, and
the f'nited States had as good a right to occupy it as Mexico
had. But, he ha ! no doubt in regard to the title If
that territory ; and here he hogged to refer to the some
what significant fact, that the whig party were not agreei
among themselves in regard to lhat boundary. At the hisi
< session of that very Congress, the venerable member from
Massachusetts?not then in his seat?[Mr. Adams] de
clared that the Rio Grande, opposite Matamoros, was par
c of the western boundary of Texas. He (Mr. (5.) believer
a that on that point there was no discrepancy of opinior
p amongst the friends of the administration. The utmos
r that the opposition party could make out was that it wai
debatable territory, and as such the American force;
" had a right to occupy it. What would have been though
r of the British government, or the government of the Unid
ted States, if they had attacked each other's forces in'Ore
* gon before the settlement of the boundary question there
s The United States had ha.l several questions of disputet
i. boundary with Great Britain, all of which they had contrived
to settle bv peaceful negotiation, without resort t<
- ,. ?r. .,.,,1 ,.r ,h........ ?i
claimed to be the territory of the other, they did not fly tc
arms to pxpel each other, hut regarded the disputed territory
as neutral ground, which both could occupy {tending
e the negotiation. Mexico, it was clear, had waged tin
war?had declared and begun the war against the Unite.
I States?not because the forces under General Taylor ocI
copied the territory, but because Texas with the conseni
c of the United States ha I annexed herself to the Union, il
- there had been no dispute about the annexation of Texas
?the occupation ot that Mexican territory, as they
claimed it to he on the other side?Texan territory, as
he (Mr. G.) and his friends maintained it to be?there
? never would have been any war between Mexico and
J the United States. The war, then, was waged by McxI
ico o:t the ground expressly of the annexation ol
> Texas, and not on account of the disputed title to thai
i strip of territory. Such being the fact, he asked what
, was to be done,.' What would they have the President
and the democratic party and the country to do in regard
t to the war? If Mexico refused to "negotiate?if she
threw away the scabbard, declaring that she never would
J resume it until she had reconquered Texas to the Sabine
. ?what course was left for the srovernment of the United
Suites? Were they to surrender Texas to Mexico?
Were they to recall their forces ? Did gentlemen nol
know that if the American forces hail ilesisteil from pursiting
the enemy and punishing him, even in the heart of
his own country, Mexico would have laughed at their
armaments?would have sneered at all their warlike
preparations?would have overrun Texas with her banditti?keeping
up the conflict till doomsday, and putting
the United States to incalculable expense, and all foi
nothing? No. The only way to obtain a peace was tc
prosecute the war in the enemy's country?leelare once
for all that Texas never could be and never would be
restored?and go on with vigor until Mexico were
obliged to come to terms. The gentleman from Massachusetts,
{Mr. Hl'DSON,] the other day, ashed what the
President intended to do with these provinces which had
been conquered by the enemy, fie (Mr. (J.) would tell
the gentleman what the American people intended
to do. As for the President, he intended to do nothing ;
he could only prosecute the war which the people had
directed him to undertake as commander-in-chief, and
for which they had voted the supplies. The gentleman
from Massachusetts ought to have known better than to
have asked such a question as that. He must hare
known that the President could not dispose of these conquered
territories at all. However, he (Mr. G.) would
inform the gentleman what the people of the United
States meant to do: they meant to hold on to the
Californias?they meant to make them a permanent
acquisition to the United States. As for the President he
could do nothing, and meant to do nothing in the premises,
hut to prosecute the war which Ihev had commanded
him to prosecute, and supplied him with the means to do
so. But he (Mr. G.) assured the omiosition that the people
of the United States would take good care that the
Californias should never belong to Mexico again. That's
what the American people meant todo. He was for prose I
eating the war, because the people meant to prosecute the
I war?he was for retaining the Californias as a perma
nent acquisition, not because they had been conquered,
' but because they would be an indemnity for the clnims of
American citizens upon Mexico, and help to pay the ex I
uenses of a war which had been foolishly, wickedlv. and
t unjustly waged by that impudent power against the United
States. That brought him to the consideration of another
subject?perhaps rather novel on that floor but which
I was necessarily connected with the question, and
might as well be broached nt that time as at any other.
! The people of the United States?a vast majority of the
i people of the United States?were not onlv intently de
termined on tire prosecution of the war, and the perrna<
nent acquisition of these territories to indemnify them for
f these expenses, but they also meant to make it'a free ter
i ritory. It was duo to candor that they should meet each
. other face to face, and in all truth and frankness talk over
the matter exactly as it was. For one, he regrettel that
' the topic had been started in that debate thus early and,
; as he thought, prematurely, although, perhaps, it might
! he all for the best. He was not responsible for its intro,
(taction, in the course of the debute that ouestion had
! been Imtind up with the subject, and it conlo not be disr
severed. It had been thus connected with the general
I subject of discussion by two honorable gentlemen from
i the State of Tennessee?a slaveholding State?one a
- democrat, and the other a whig. In the last session of
that Contra** he (Mr. G.) had Toted for the Wilmut a
amendment ot the " two million bill" That amendment
he himself would not have ottered ; but huvinx been offered,
ho would not dodge the queMiou, but voted for the
amendment; and he then took occasion to say that whenever
and in whatever manner that question should prei
sent itself, he stood ready to face it with aJl the ich|kjiisi
hilities attached to it. He re .yarded the amendment as
' premature, because, for his part, he could not see how it
could affect any treaty which might be entered into be,
tween Met ico and tin I'nitcd States. It involved a ques-1 t
turn which related strictly to themselves. It was entirely
i a domestic question?one witli which Mexico had uothI
ing to do, and which could not sustain any relation to
any treaty between the two countries. It was n question
I to t?e decided by the votes upon that floor; and if tile south
i carried it, they should have n in their own way, and the
I north would live up to it as sacredly as thev lived up to
{the compact in the constitution in regard to that subject
j The question would properly arise when the territorial
II laws cams to be extended over those conquere I provinces,
i ' and if it were then declared a free territory, ut (lie prois-r
j time it would come into the I'nion as a free State; whilst,
i! on the other hand, if slavery were jieniiiilcd, it would
j come in as Texas did. Slavery existed in Texas, and
it could not he admitted without slavery. Hut rather
j than let it remain an inferior, in ieiiendent, nower on
i their border*, or become a dependency of Great llriiuiu,
f the United States took it with slavery, ami never would
i aliow abolitionists or anybody else to meddle with that
t question there, leaving to time and their own good
t judgment to relieve them of it. When the tune
f eutue that their laws should he extended over California,
; as they undoubtedly would be, he had no doubt that a
provision excluding shivery would be attempted to be ini
Sertoli, and that he had no doubt would he carried. These
? were Ins opinions; and he repeated his conviction thai
I the people of the United states were determined to prose ;
cute the war with the utmost vigor to an honorable ter?
inination, and that they would insist ir|K>ii the permanent
> acquisition of the Calilornias, to be admitted as Ntu'es
i whenever the circumstances and the population of the
, territory would justify that measure. If, then, the Wil*
mot amendment should be pressed?if it were insisted
i that a provision should he inserted prohibiting iuvolunta*
t ry servitude in anv of the conqurred tenitories, although
t he should regard the movement us premature, still, if call-,
r ed upon, he should vote for such a provision?certain I v
' lie never would dodge a vote upon that subiect. lie
i would vote for it hit or miss?sink or swim ; lie would
6 faithfully endeavor to represent the sentiments of the div
t trict froiii which he came. In justice to his southern
- friends he would say that he did not believe that they do
sired to extend slavery over an inch of territory on that conl
tinent, or any where where it did not exist. They had been
r j taught to believe, and they did believe, tiiat slavery was
- an evil existing in their bosom without any fault of
theirs. From the speeches of southern geuilemen, he
r had been led to believe that such was the fact. Slavery
l was introduced into that country when in the colonial
i state. It was brought there without any fault of theirs,
i ami they regarded it as an evil thut must be borne, bc
cause the time hail not come that the country could be rid
t of that awful blight and eternal curse, lie might bemis
taken. It might be that gentlemen wished to extend the
institution of slnverv ; but he did not believe that a nut- ;
> jorily of the southern people, if polleJ. woulil Ire opposed |
s I to makin^ California, New .Mexico, nnd the whole of the *
Mexican territory as free as the north itself. It was for c
I their interest to have it free. The north would protect |
11 tliem in the day and hour of their trouble, and so would t
I the free .States of California, and New Mexico. The
? freemen of the north stood by the south in |
' all their rights upon this subject. The freemen ^
t of the north would not consent that anything should r
t disturb the relations between master and slave in the r
southern states. But he did (relieve that the freemen of (|
r the north were as fully determined that they would not t,
I nav taxes and send volunteers to the war to conquer ter- |
ritnry over which slavery would be extended. The sooner t
. the question was inet the better, lie regretted that the
question had been raised at all; but he ha I yet to learn
f that tlie southern gentlemen on that floor, when the propI
osition should come up. either on the extension of terri,
torial laws, or an appropriation bill, woubl be found
' light.ng with the whtgs against an\ measures to retain | i
' I the territory, or any bill voting supplies, on account of u
) | provision prohibiting involuntary servitude. Why, he
; had it in his jiower to prove, ii time permitted, that leading
whigs a[>pioved the prosecution of the war because
, the territory was to be tree. He would read from the
s|ieech of the gentleman from Tennessee, one of the old
est members on that floor, and one of the inost eloquent
I members of his party, [Mr. (ikxtey.] What did he!
> " The President was going to eonquer n va-u region ol"
country, larger than all the old thirteen Stales, and mid il in
| tins l uioti. Oill any m tn know what lie bad int ituled to
[ do with lit*- two millions of dollars lie bad u-ked tli House
I to appropriate tor contingent expenses? A good democrat
Inid moved a celebrated resolution on that occasion prohib'
iting the purchase oi any territory with the money, unle-?
J slavery was to be exclu<l"d front it. Sift*ly, the people must
I be mad if they shut their eves to the bearing of such n re?
) olution. Tliey were bound to anticipate the dangers which
I threatened tliein, and to call the people to the resell *. Their
, dearest interests were about lo lie put in jieiil by furls and
, Iraitn-s. Would lite iiorth *i*n States consent tliat slavery
. should bo established in tiu*s? new provinces? Certainly
not. Then We were to bare at tltc ex'remc South a cordon
' ol free Slates. What would the present South s ty to that ?"
There was a direct amrcnl to tlie south, that the free:
men of the north would not consent to extend slavery
' over the territory, ami that therefore the south should
' oppose the war. That was the argument of the gentle1
man. What was the great daugec?the great evil that the I
' gentleman circauea, ami wmcn ne pur as me gnuum ui j
1 his appeal to the south ? Why, that the northern States i
' | would not consent to slavery being established, and we d
I were to have at the extreme south a cordon of new e
States. Now he (Mr. G.) wished that to go to the people f
' of the north ; he wished them to understand that a lead- I
ins southern whig had announced as the ground of his 1
opposition to the war, the fear of the permanent ac- a
' quisition of California and New Nexico as free States, t
1 The gentleman was oppressed by the apprehension of an \
evil altogether imaginary. Facts proved that in cases 1
1 where free States were in" contact with slave States, the \
1 former, and not the latter, suffered. Let them look at i
Pennsylvania, the good old Quaker abolition State; it d
. bordered upon Maryland a slave State; but what in- 'I
| jury had ever resulted to the lattor from th? contact. 1
Again, look at Ohio. She was in contact with Kentucky, t
Was Kentucky injured by the contact with Ohio, where, t
everybody knew, the most rabid abolitionists in the whole c
world are to be found? Now, it was, Ohio that a
suffered, becoming the receptacle of all the free and I
manumitted negroes, and runaway niggers, who were c
a cur*:' to anv community, wno cam? irom wie ncigii- v
| boring State. It was tlte free States that were injure!? a
not?and here the hammer fell. e
Mr. ROOT then addressed the committee. He b
; found whiles disclaiming what was imputed to them d
by their opponents, and democratic gentlemen dif- a
feting from each other?for withrtut any imputa- s
! tion of eaves-dropping, whilst struggling for the 1
I floor, he could not help learning that there were differ- v
ences .amongst the democratic gentlemen. He was a |i
whig. and nothing else. He stood on his own footing, t
He believed that the war was unnecessary, and therefore (
unjustifiable. It was not sufficient to teil him that Me.x- <1
1 ico had done them wrong. He regarded war as so terri- g
hit" a calamity?so absolutely condemned by the benign 1
system of religion under which they lived?that it took |i
j wrongs which admitted of no other remedy that could jus- s
tify if. That such wrongs existed he did not believe, s
{ What were these causes of complaint ? Why, that Me.v-1 \
[ ico would not pay her debts. If such were good cause of ti
war, God help some of the States of the Union ! [A il
laugh ] But she would not settle the boundary. How ti
I ditl they come to have that boundary to settle ? They c
I had brought up an old quarrel. It was no rea- d
son to go to war with f c.it Britain about a boundary, ii
They were so anxious tu goto war that they gave up I
six degrees to Great Britain. They had acted in this e
| case as the man did who got up a good private character e
! t,? i,,.t ?.r ...kAV, ,k?
who hp (Mr. R.) bplievcd was an able lawyer, at once tie- l
cided was very good in law, Chief Justice Marshall to t
the contrary notwithstanding! [A laugh.] As to where t
the lirst blood was spilt, there was no dispute. But v
there was dispute as to whom the territory belonged to. r
| It was Mexico's as clearly as the city of Mexico itself, v
The United States never had had possession of it. In c
the valley.of the Rio Grande, where the United States r
government had caused the first blood to he spilt, there *
were Mexicans whose grandfathers lay buried there. It c
was an inference which gentlemen "drew, but wholly \
unsupported by facts, that American blood had been first x
shed by Mexico on American soil. It was said that the f
war was not rarried on for conqnest. Oh! no. Tliev I
took the towns nnd provinces of Mexico, but it was \
| only to get indemnity! They admitted that Mexico hail 1
| nothing but territory to yay with, and yet thev said it was t
..... .. .?.*? v/? vumpcEii. ** ru, ou^iuune mey am waje a war ?
of conquest, in what would it differ from the present war? c
In nothing but that they would go foward bold) v. like men. 1
But what was to be done with the territory ? The military c
sway would not stive them any right to establish civil C
government. Self-defence was all that it could do. The t
President had no authority but military authority. He c
must confine himself to that. He must respect the rights y
of the citizens, and leave the laws of the country exact I \ I
as they found them when they made the conquest. All r
the acts looking to civil government were violations of 2
the law of nations. A? to annexing the country by "
proclamations, it would he ridiculous, if it were not for r
its being indicative of the spirit in which the war hail I
hecn begun and carried on. It had all evinced n thimble- I
rigging construction of the constitution. The Presdent's f
"parental fondness" for the territory was n little indis- a
creet A learned judge [Mr. Bati.v] had read long an- <
thorities from Sir Wm. Scott, by which it appeared a con- t
quering sovereign might hold as his own, and even ceil" 1
away to a third party, a conquered island ; and then, he I
,*ked, who would controvert that authority? He (Mr. R.)
lid not need to controvert it. It was not a case in point.
i Mr. Polk were a sovereign it might be so. But, thank
?od, he was not a sovereign yet .Vo; they could not have
11 II inrixilictiiin nvi>r CAiiniivrul nrni u,.
lie sanction of the national legislature. Before tltey could
- tahlish civil government, or authorize anybody clue t?
lo it, lltev must annex the provinces to their own terriory.
AH the labor and eloquence of the learned gentlenan
were thrown away. 1 he President hail disavowed
lie very acts which his friends on the floor had sus
ained. The last message was a funny one. He (Mr.
i.) had been a personal admirer of Cenerul Jackson, be
ause he w as a straightforward man, and looked danger in
he face. But Mr. Polk dodged behind his secretaries,
tnd the secretaries dodged behind their clerks, and their
Jerks dodged behind their insignificance?[laughter]?
heir political insignificance. It was not the spirit of
Old Hickory," but of the "Sage of Linden wola," that
low presided in the White House. The President
lodged behind the Senate on the Oregon question, and he
lodged behind the war on the lea and eoifce tax, and be
iiud Mr. Secretary .Many on the establishment of civil
soveriunent in Mexico, and Mr. Marcy dodged behind
Jeneral Kearny and Commodore Stockton; and then the
'resident excused the latter by Buying that the generaN
tad erred only through "an excess of political |>ariotism."
(Laughter ] But how long did they iuend
to curry on the war! They said that the
onger they carried on the war they would get
he more from Mexico. But did they mean to
barge nothing for the poor fellows wlio had been
ilaughtered ? llow much would they charge for a
nan f No. Let them not submit that <|ue*tion to the
louse, but ask the widow and orphans to tlx the amount;
tnd then tfiev would find that they had got crime enough
igainst Mexico to take her last acre. Somebody had
;ot to square up and foot the bill. If the widows could
lot bring them to account, Uo.l would bring them to ar
a".i ,k...?..it ? .k?. ii. u I?.
he letter! [A 1 augh.l Hut would they drive Mexico
nthe wall f It they did, suppose in the laM remnant of
ilexico, in her city, ihe\ should find enough of good old
lastilian blood to tell tliern "War to the knife Pernips
they would find even their priests doffing their kier
lutal rohcB anil taking part in the war. Perhaps they
vnuld tjn?t their mothers unit daughters easting their gold
mil silver into the crucible. Or did they intend to atop
ind be content with one-half or two-thirds of Mexico .'
I the* did. how were thev to govern it f The gentleman
lorn New Vork (.Mr. Gordon] undertook to say that
'iv il government would be extended over it, and
lien coil* the question of slavery. The gentleman
laid he was real* to meet it. He (Mr. K.) was rea.lv
dso to meet it With God's help, he would do his duty
lien He w ould tell them ou that question there would
ie no division He wished that northern men had always
itood up for the interests of their constituents as the
umthern men had stoo l up. If they did stifie discussion
Imk, what would it avail f The people would not cease
o struggle. They would make their roice hranl and
heir |iower felt. Jonathan was hard to get into a light;
ut once get him at it, and he would slay a white heat a
ong time. [A laugh ] Me then went on to denounce
he President aa having connived ut the return of Santa
Vnna. An to his future course, he would say we would
uige of the measures the administration brought forvard.
He gave no pledge except that he gave to hi*
onstituents, "that he would do just us he pleased."
fc was not afraid to vote against the war and s|>eak
[gainst it.
Mr. BOWLJN next addressed the committee. He had
toped that when their armies were in the field,
yntlcineii would not have instituted inquiries about
lice questions of international law. It had been
natter of much regret to him to witness that
lebate from day to dav. There should be hut one sentinent
now. Intestine controversy should e-rtninly have
?en avoided. But was it not mo?t glorious to "reflect
hat. after a six month's campaign, they had nothing to
lo there hut dispute about the territories* thev had won
Vhile the discussion was proceeding, the glory of that
var hul established the national character on the proudst
h.isis. lie, for one, felt proud of the acquisitions that
ind been made , and he hoped he would be able to vinlicale
those assaile I in cousjqueiieo of that triumphnit
prosecution of the war. He had male note-- of the
ipposite speeches, hut those who Uo. t preceded him hail
iMy answered almost all tlie |>oints to which he had inended
to reply. The gentleman from Tennessee [Mr
Jkntrv] assumed, in tne outset of his speech, that he
vas le i to speak to show that he was not ashamed to
peak. Why afraid to s|?t<ak?why fancy that he or his
arty was assailed ? The assault came from his own pary.
The discussion was brought on by gentlemen on the
ipposite side who impeached the President for the conluct
of the war. If his (Mr. B.'s) friends had turned
he tables on their opponents it was the fortune of war,
ind the gentlemen opposite'must make the best of it,
ind submit with what grace they could to the fate. It
vas difficult for gentlemen to find proof for their asserion
that there was no ground for the war. The causes
if the war had been fully presented. It was admitted
hat Mexico owed the United States a debt. But that
vas treated with levity, and reference was made to the
act tli.it some .of the States were unable to meet their
ligations. Was that a reason why the nation should
ubrait to every species of outrage and wrong.' Mexico
cknowledged her indebtedness, and refused to pay. But
It true cause of war was the annexation of Texas?an
.ct introduced in that House by a whig member. Texas
vas as free and independent as Mexico ever was. They
bought proper to annex her; that was the offence. Mexco
had no more to do with that than she would have
iad in case of annexation of the Canada*. As to strikng
the first blow, it was quite .immaterial. Inlee
1 the party who struck the first blow was genrally
to be regarded as the more gallant. The
orbearance of the United States had been abused
dut it was said that the United States troops were on
ilexican territory. They were on disputed territory,
ind either government had the right lo place their armies
here. But it was the people who had resolved upon the
var, and the alacrity of the volunteers was one of the
lest possible evidences of the popular approbation of the
var. The gentleman from Tennessee, [Mr. Gentrt,]
ollowed by the gentleman from Ohio, [Mr..Iloor,] eni-aviiri.
I tn naduit tfi.. I'n.uiilonf nn itio I liwrai nn^tinn
rtiai belonged to the fiftv-four-forty men. But he (Mr.
I.) met the assumption of the first gentleman, [Mr. Genry.]
that the President acted with duplicity. What were
he facts ? When Mr. McLanc went out, did not he
arry out with him the identical ofier made at the time of
.settlement? Certainly. Where, then, the duplicity.'
"lie President had uniformly declared that our title was
tear to .'?! deg. 10 min., and the attempt to assail him
iras wholly unfounded in facts. They were told again
n l again that this was a war of conquest. ' He had
ndeavored to show that the war was justifiaile.
Now, whether it was to he a war of conquest
epended ou the gallantry of their forces. They ha 1 to
dvance upon the foe or retreat. If they advanced, it was
aid to he a President's war, and he was assailed for it
t they retreated, the same clamor would be raised. What
could they have the army do ? When the armies were
nit there on the Rio Grande, and they were attacked by
he Mexicans, were thev to he stayed by an artificial line'
'ertainly not. The advance Into Mexico was an indent
of the war, wholly independent of anv real or ima- I
;inod purpose in the government of the United States. ,
lad the army receded or refrained from pursuing and
finishing the enemy, they would have heard the univeral
shout of disapprobation. But the President, it was
aid, had some vast scheme of territorial aggrandizement.
Vhy? Because their arms had been successful! But J
hey were told again and again that they were establishng
government in these provinces. Now, he called atention
of gentlemen to the distinction between the pro- i
lamations and the acts of the generals. Had they I
one u single improper act.' They found themselves
11 possession of territory?whnt were they to do'
n the spirit of humanity and civilization, they had
xtended to those Provinces the blessings of a milil govrnment.
He alluded to the conduct of the British tnili- ^
iry officers in the last war in Michigan, in proof of the ,
egnlity of the Procedure in establishing government in
he conquered Mexican territories. All tiiat was a pallia- (
tve exercise of militarv authoritv alter conmiest. What
vould gentlemen have done ? The acquisition of teritorv
resulted from the gallantry of their armies, anil
vould gentlemen have them toexjiend hloodand treasure,
inly to relinquish territory when conquered ? This was
10 time to cavil and quihhle about such points. Whs'
vould gentlemen themselves have done in similar cirumstances
to those in which the American commanders
vere placed ? Certainly they could not have acted more
risely. General Kearny was a true soldier?he came
rom his (Mr. B's.) own state and city; but he was not a
earned civilian, and if he did not aftogelher avoid error,
vas that error to Ire charged U|Hin the President of the
'nited States ' He would tell gentlemen that when they
humped away at General Kearny, they were hitting one
f their staunehest friends in the same* State. The Gen nil
did no act in New Mexico?setting aside the bomlast
proclamation ofa victorious commander?that had been
onaunrunated, or was likely to be consummated, that w*?
lontrary to law. But it wns said that he had directed
he election of a delegate. The President hnd disapproved
if that, ami there was an pnd of it. But the whol''
fovernment there was wholly temjiorary, and intended t"
e temporary. They then went on to speak of Califf1'
lia. Vvhat was the fact there ? The Pnited States (aniens
thete were pressed, and they turned inmn their aailants.
The result was the conquest of the Califnrlias
The government was thrown into their handiVerc
not the jieople to be protected t And did not Col
'remont do exactly what was rightAh! but the de- o
thai u .is to get Ctludtnia! Gentlemen were feigning o(| r
i question before it had come up. If they saw fit to (><" a
Hliforma, they would hold to it. Now, he put ' r
0 gentlemen again. and called on them to take itB
lome to themselves, that when they assailed thay ^
1 resident as a usurper, what would they have don'B

xml | txt