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HE HAS SAID IT. PRESIDENT ARTUUR'LI FIRST MES SAGE TO CONGRESS. He Deplores the Assassination— A General Review of A tl'iirs at Home and Abroad— At Peace With All the World and No Quarrels Expected— Down on Silver bat Violently in Favor of Civil Service Re form—Numerous Projects Suggested— Tbe Counting Out Fraud of 1876 Point edly Rebuked— Star Route Thieves Denouuced— Their Prosecution Insisted Vpou -The Destruction of Our Navy De plored—The Fluancfal Condition of the Country— A Flea for Reduced Taxation* To the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States: An appalling calamity has befallen the American people since their chosen representa tives last met in the halls where you are now assembled. We might else recall with unal loyed content the more than usual PROSPERITY with which throughout the year the nation has been blessed. Its harvests have been plen teous; its varied industrieb have thriven; the health of its people has been preserved; it has maintained with foreign governments the un disturbed relations of peace. For these mani festations of his favor we owe to him who holds our destiny in his hands the tribute of our grateful devotions. TRIBUTE TO GARFIELD. To that mysterious exercise of his will which has taken from us the loved and illus trious citizen who was but lately the head of the nation, we bow in sorrow and submission The memory of his exalted character, of his noble achievements, and of his political life, will bj treasured forever as a sacred possession of the whole people. The announcement of his death drew, from foreign governments and peoples tributes of sympathy and sorrow which history will record as Mgnil tokens of friendship of na tions and the federation of mankind. GREAT BRITAIN. The feeling of good will between our own government and that of Great Britain wa ß never more/ marked than at the present. In recognition of this pleasing fact, I directed on the occasion of the late centennial celebration at Yorktown, that a salute be given to the British flig. Sive the correspondence to which I shall re fer hereafte-, in relation to the proposed canal across the Isthmus of Panama, little has oc curred worthy of mention in the diplomatic relations of the country. Early in the year the Fortune Bay claims were satisfactorily settled, by the British government paying in full the sum of .£15,000, most of which has already twea distributed. As the terms of the settlement include compensation for injuries suffered by our fi-h-rmeti at Ashel bay, there has been retained from the gross award a sum which is deemed adequate for these claims. The participation of Americans in the ex hibitions at Melbourne and Sydney, will be approvingly mentioned in the reports of the two exhibitions soon to be presented to con gress. They will disclose the readiness of our country to make successful competition in distant lijld-s of enterprise. Negotiations for an international copyright convention are in hopeful progress The surrender of Sitting Bull and his nue • upon the Canadian frontier has allayed all apprehension, although bodies of British Indians still cross the border in quest of sustenance. Upon this subject a corres pondence lias been opened, which promises an adequate understanding. Our troops have orders t;> avoid in the meanwhile all collisions ■with these Indians. ' FRANCE. The presence at Yorktown of the represen tatives of republican descendants of Lafayette and of his gallant compatriots, who were our allies in the revolution, has served to strength en the spirit of good will which has always existed between the. two nations. You will be furnished with the proceedings of the bi-metal ic conference, held during the summer at the city of Paris. No result was reached, but a valuable in'erchange of views was had-, and the conference will next year be renewed. At the electrical exhibition and congress, also held at Paris, this country was creditably represented by eminent specialists, who, in the absence of an appropriation, generously lent their efficient aid at the instance of the state department. While our exhibitors in this almost distinctively American field of achieve ment have won several awards, I recommend that congress provide for the repayment of the personal expenses, incurred in the public interest, by the honorary commissioners and delegates. -^ GERMANY. No now questious respecting the status of our naturalized citizens in Germany have arisen during the year, and the causes of com plaint, especially in Alsace and Lorraine, have practically ceased. Through the liberal action of the imperial government in accepting our often expressed views on the subject, the application of the treaty of ISGS to the lately acquired Rhenish province has received very earnest attention, and a defi nite and lasting agreement on this point is con fidently expected. Tito participation of the descendants of Baron yon Bteuben in the Yorktown festivities, and their subsequent reception by their Amer ican kinsmen, has strikingly evinced the good will -which unites German people and our own. SPAIN. Oar intercourss with Spain has been friend ly. An agreement concluded in February last fixes a term for the labors for the Spanish and American claims commission.. The Spanish government has been requested to pay the late awards of the commission, and will, it is be lieved accede to the request as promptly as on former occasion. By recent legislition one rous flue have been imposed upon American shipping in .Spanish aud colonial parts for slight irregularities is mani fest. One case of hardship is specially worthj of attention. Tbe bark Masonica, bound for Japan, entered Morilla in distress, and is there sought to be confiscated under the Spanish revenue laws, for an alleged shortage in her transhipped cargo. Though efforts for he relief hare thus" far proved unavailing, it is expected that the whole will be adjusted in a friendly manner. ITALY. A consular agreement with Italy has been sanctioned and proclaimed, which puts at rest the conflict of jurisdiction in the case of crimes on shipboard. Several important in ternational conferences have been held in Italy iluriug the year. At tbe geographical congress oi Venice, the Boniface congress of Milan, and the Nice congress of Turin, this country was represented by delegates of branches of the public service or by pvirate citizens duly accredited in an honorary capaci ty. It is hoped that|eongress will Rive such prominence to their participation as they may serin to deserve. HOLLAND. The abolition of all Jdiscriminating duties against Dutch colonial productions of the dutch East Indies, as are reported here from Holland, his been already considered by con gress. I trust that at the present session the matter will be favorably concluded. TURKEY. The insecurity of life and property in many part: of Turkey, has given rise to correspond ence with the Porte, relating particularly to the better protection of American missiona ries in the empire. The condemned murderer of the emineHt missionary, Dr. Justin W. Parso ) , has not yet been executed, although this government has repeatedly demanded that exemplary justice be done. SWITZERLAND. Again the Swiss government has solicited the good offices of ourdplomatic and con sular agents for the protection of its citizens in countries where it is not itself represented. This request has, within proper limits, been granted. Our ageuts in Switzerland have been instructed to protest against the conduct of the authorities of certain communes in per mitting the immigration to this country of criminal and other objectiouable persons. Several such persons, through the co operation of the commissioners o emigration at New York, have been sent back by the steamers which brought the m. A continuance of this course may prove a more effective remedy than diplomatic remon strance. ROUMANIA AND SERVIA. Treaties of commerce and navigation and for the regulation of consular privileges, have been concluded with Roumania and Bervia since their admission into the family of Euro pean nations, as is natural with contiguous states that have like institutions and like aims of advancement and development. MEXICO. The friendship of the United States and Mexico has been cordially maintained. The government has lost no occasion of encourag ing the Mexican government to a beneficial realization of the mutual advantage which will result from a more intimate commercial intercourse, and from the opening of the rich interior of Mexico to railway enterprise. I deem it important that means be provided to restrain the lawlesness unfortunately so com mon on the frontier, and to suppress the for aging of the reservation Indians on either side of the Rio Grande. CENTRAL AMERICA. The neighboring states of Central America have preserved internal peace, and their out ward relations toward the United States have been those of intimate friendship. There are encouraging signs of their growing disposi tion to subordinate their local interests to those which are common to them by reason of these geographical relations. The boundary dispute between Guatamala and Mex ico has offered this government an opportunity to exercise its good offices for preventing a rupture between those states, and for procuring a peaceful solution of the ques tion. I cherish a strong hope that, in view of our relations of amity with both countries, our friendly counsel will prevail. The Costa Rica government lately formed an engagement with Columbia for settling by arbi tration the boundary question between those countries, providing that the po6t of arbitra tors should be offered successively to the king of the Belgians, the king of Spain, and the president of the Argentine Confederation. The king of the Belgians has declined to act, but I am not as yet advised of the action of the king of Spain. As we have certain interests in the disputed territory, which are protected by treaty engagement with one of tbe parties, it is important that the ar bitration should not, without due ciuse, affect our rights, and this government has accord ingly thought proper to make its views known to the parties to the agreement, and intimate them to the Belgian government. . PANAMA CANAL. The questions growing out of the proposed inter-oceanic water way across the Isthmus of Panama are of grave national importance. This government has not been unmindful of the solemn obligations imposed upon it by its compact of 1846 with Columbia, as tn"e in dependent and sovereign mistress of the ter ritory crossed by the canal, and sought to render them effective by fresh engagements with the Columbian republic, looking to their practical execution. The ne gotiations to this end, after they had reached what appeared to be a mutually satisfactory solution, were met in Columbia by a disavowal of the powers which its envoy had assumed, and by proposals for negotiations on a modi fied basis. Meanwhile this government learn ed that Columbia had proposed to the European powers to join in a guarantee of the neutrality of the proposed Panama canal, a guarantee which would be in direct contravention of our obli gations, as the s«le guarantee of the integ rity of Columbian territory and of the neu trally of the canal itself. My lamented pre decessor felt it his duty to place before the European powers the reasons which make the prior guarantee of the United Btates indis pensible, and for which the interjection of any foreign power might be regarded as a superfluous and unfriondly act. Foreseeing the probable reliance of the Brit ish government on the provisions of the Clayton-Bulwer treaty of 1850, as affording room for a space in the guarantees which the United Btates covenanted with Columbia four years bsfore, I have not hesitated to supple ment the action of my predecessor by propos ing to her majesty's government the modifi cation of that instrument and the abrogation of such clauses thereof as do not comport with the obligations of the United States to ward Columbia, or with the vital needs of the two friendly parties to the compact SOUTH AMERICA. This government sees with great concern the continuance of the hostile relations be tween Chili, Bolivia and Peru. An early peace between these republics is much to be desired, not only that they may themselves be spared further misery and bloodshed, but be cause their continued antagonism threatens consequences which are, in my judgment, to the interest of the republican government on this continent and calculated to destroy the best elements of our free and peaceful civiliza tion. As in the present excited condition of popu lar feeling in these countries, there has been serious misaprehension as to the position of the United Slates, and a* separate diplomatic intercourse with each through independent ministers is sometimes subject, owing to the want of prompt recipro cal communication, to temporary misunder standing, I have deemed it judicious at the present time to send a special envoy, accred ited to all and each of them, and furnished with general instructions, which will enable him to bring these powers into friendly rela tions. The government of Venezuela maintains its attitude of warm friendship, and continues with great regularity its payment of the monthly quota of the diplomatic debt. With out suggesting the direction in which con gress should act, I ask attention to the pend ing questions affecting the distribution of the sums thus far received. The relations be tween Veuzeuela and France, growing out of the same debt, have been, for sometime past, in an unsatisfactory state, and this govern ment, as the neighbor and one of the largest creditors of Venezuela, has interposed itself with the Krench government, with a view of producing a friendly and honorable adjustment. I regret that the commercial interests be tween the United States and Brazil, from which great advantages were hoped a year ago, have suffered from the withdrawal of American lines of communication between Brazilian ports and our own. Through tha efforts of our minister, resi dent at Buenos Ayres, and the United States minister at Santiago, a treaty baa been con cluded between the Argentine Republic and Chili, disposing of the long-pending Patagon ian boundary question It is a matter of con gratulation that our government has been nfforded the opportunity of successfully ex erting its good influence for the prevention of disagreements between the republics of the American continent. CHINA. lam glad to inform you that the treaties ately nego tiated with China have been duly ratified on both sides and the exchange made at Peking. Legislation is necessary to call its provisions into effect. The prompt and friend ly manner which the Chinese government at the request of the United States conceded the modification of treaties, should secure careful regard for the interests and susceptibilities of that government in the enactment of any laws relating to Chiuese immigration. The clauses of the treaties whichjfoi bid the participation of citizens or vessels of the Uni ted States in the opium trade will doubtless receive your approval and they will attest the sincere interest of our people and government in the commendable efforts of the Chinese government to put a stop to this demoralizing and destructive traffic, jn relation both to China and Japan, some changrs are desirable in onr present system of consular jurisdic tion. I hope at some future time to lay be fore you a scheme for its improvement in the entire east. JAPAN. The intimacy between our country and Ja pan, the most advanced of the eastern nations continues to be cordial. lam advised that the Emperor contemplates the establishment of a constitutional government and that he has already summoned a parliamentary congress for the purpose ot effecting a change. Such a remarkable step toward complete asssimil ation with the western system can not fail to bring Japan to closer and more beneficial relationship with ourselves and the chief pacific power. A question has arisen in relation to the exer cise in that country of iudicial functions car ried on by our minister and consuls. The in dictment, trial and conviction in the consular court at Yokohama of John Boss, a merchant seaman on board an American vessel have made it necessary for the government to insti tute a careful examination into the nature and methods of this jurisdiction. It appears Ross was regularly shipped under protection of the United Btates, but was by birth a British sub ject. My predecessor felt it his duty to rely on the position thit by his service as a regu larly-shipped seaman on board an American merchant vessel, Ross was subject to the laws of the service and to the jurisdiction of the United States consul or authorities. I renew the recommendation which has been heretofore urged by the executive upon the attention of congress, after the deduction of such amount as may be found due to Ameri cans, the balance of the indemnity funds here tofore obtained from China and Japan and which are now in the hands of the stat* de Daily partment, be returned to the governments of those countries. THE HAWAIIAN ISLANBS. The king of Hawaii, in the course of his homeward return, after a journey around the world, has lately visited this country, and while our relations with that kingdom are friendly, this government has viewed with concern, the effort", to seek replenishment of the diminishing population of the islands from outward sources to a degree which may im pair the native sovereignty and independence in which the United States was among the first to testify a lively interest. Relations of unimpaired amnesty have been maintained throughout the year with the re spective governments of Austria, Hungary, Belgium, Denmark, Hayti, Paraguay, Ura guay, Portugal, Sweden and Norway, and this may also be said of Greece and Equador, al though our relations with those states have for many years been severed by the withdrawal ■of appropriations for diplomatic representa tives at Athens and Quite-. It seems expedient to restore those mission?, even at a reduced scale, and I decidedly recommend such a course with respect to Equador, which is likely within the near future to play an important part among the nations of the Southern Pacific. At its last extra session the senate called for the text of the Geneva convention for the re lief of the wounded in the war. I trust that this action foreshadows such interest in this subject as will result in the accomplishment of the desired end. I invite your attention to the propriety of adopting the new code of international rule for the prevention of the collisions in the high seas and of confering the domestic legislation of the United States thereto so that no confu sion may arise from the application of con flicting rules in the case of vessels of different .nationalities meeting in tidal waters. These international rules differ but slightly from our own. They have been adopted by the navy department for the gov ernment of the war ships of the United States on the high seas and in foreign waters, and through the action of the state department in disseminating the rules and in acquainting the ship masters with the option of conferring on them within the jurisdictional waters of the United States, they are now very generally known and obeyed. TRADE REPORTS. The state department still continues to pub lish to the country the trade and manafactur ing reports received from its off! cials abroad. The success of this course warrants its continuance, and such appropriation as may be required to meet the rapidly increasing demand for thes-5 publica tions. With special reference to the Atlantic cotton exposition the October number of the reports was devoted to a collection of papero on the cotton goods trade of the world. The international conference, for which in 1878 congress made provisions, assembled in thi city in January la«t and its sessions were pro longed until March. Although it reached no specific conclusions affecting the future action of the participant powers, the interchange of views proved to be most valuable. The full protocols of the sessions have been already presented to the senate. NATIONAL BOARD OP HEALTH. As pertinent to this general subject I call your attention to the operations of the Na tional Board of Health, established by act of congress, approved March 3, 1879. Its sphere of duty was enlarged by the act of June 22, m tha came year. By the last named act th< board was required to investigate such meas ures as might be deemed necessary for pre venting the introduction of contagious or in fectious diseases from foreign countries into the United States or from one state to anoth er. The execution of the rules and regulations prepared by the board and approved by m 3 predecessor has done much to arrest the pro gress of epidemic disease and has thus ren dered substantial service to the nation. The international sanitary conference to which I have referred, adopted the form of a bill of health to be used by all vessels seeking to e& ter the port 3of the countrits whose represen tatives participated in the deliberations. This form has been preserved by the national hoarc of health, and incorporated with its rules and regulations, which have been approved by m< in pursuance of law. The health of the peopl< is of supreme importance. All measures looking to their preservation against the -pread of contagious diseases, and to the in crease of our sanitary knowledge for such purposes, deserve the attention of congress. THE TREASURY. The report of the secretary of the treasury represents in detail a highly satisfactory ex hibit of the state of the nuances and the con dition of various branches of the public ser vice administered by that department. The ordinary revenues from all sources for tin fiscal year ending June 10, 1881, were from cutoms, $198,159,676 02; from internal rev enue, $135,264,385.51; from public lands, $2,221,863.17; from tax on circulation and de posits of National banks, $8,116,115.72; from repayment of interest by Pacific Railway com panies, $81,083,380; from sinking funds for Pacific Railway companies, $805,180.54; from custom fees, fines, penalties, etc., $1,225, --514.86; from fees, consular, letters patent and lands, $32,244,984 90; •rom proceeds of sales of government prop erty, $262,174; from profit? on coinage, $3, --468,485.61; from revenues of the District of Columbia, $2,016,199.23; from miscellaneous sources, $62,068,801.34. Total ordinary re ceipts, $360,782,297. The ordinary expenditures for the same pe riod, were for civil expenses, $17,941,177.19; for foreign intercourse, $1,093,954 92; for Indi ans, $6,514,161.09; for pensions, $50,050,279.62. for the military establishment, including river and harbor improvement and arsenals, $40, --466,460.55; for the naval establishment in holding vessels and machinery in improve ment at navy yards, $15,686,671 66; for miscel laneous expenditures, including public build ings, lighthouses and collecting the revenue, $t1,837,"J80.57; for expenditures on account of the District of Columbia, $3,543,912 03; for interest on the public debt, $82,508,741.18; for premium on bonds purchased, $161,268.78. Total ordinary expenditures, $260,712,887.59, leaving a surplus of revenue of $100,069,404.98, which was applied as follows : To the redemption of bonds for the sinking fund $ 74,371,200 0 ) Fractional currency for sinking lund 109,001 a 5 Loans of February, 1861 7,418,000 00 Ten-forties of 1864 ... 2,016, 150 00 Five-twenties of 1862 183,000 00 Five-twenties of 1864 34.00000 Five-twenties of 1865 373,000 00 Consols of 1865 1,431,500 00 Consols of 1567 959,150 00 Consolsof 1868 337,400 00 Loan indemnity stock 10,000 00 Old demand compound interest and other notes 18.330 00 And to this and to the increase of case in the treasury 14,637,023 93 Total $100,069,404 98 The requirements of the sinking fund for the year amounted to $93,786,064.02, which sum includes a balance of $48,817,128.78, net, provided for during the previous fiscal year. The sum of $74,480,201 was applied to this fund, which left a deficit of $16,205,873.47. The increase of the revenue in 1881 over that of the previous year was $19,352,901.10. It is estimated that the receipts during the past fi»cal year will reach $400,000,000, and expend kurea"s27o,oOo,oOo, leaving a surplus of $130, --000,000. THE SILVER QUESTION. In pursuance of the policy of the govern ment to maintain silver dollars near the gold standard they were made receivable for all customs, taxes and public dues. About $66, --000,000 of them are outstanding. They formed an unnecessary addition to the paper currency, as the current amount which may readily be supplied by the National banks in accordance with the act of February 28, 1878. is ample. The treasury department has monthly caused at least $2,000,000 in value of silver bull'on to be coined into standard dol lars. One hundred and two millions of these dollars hare already been coined, while only about $31,000,000 are in circulation. For the reasons which he specifies I concur in the secretary's recommendation that the pro vision for coinage of a specified amount each month be repeated and that hereafter only bo much be coined as shall be necessary to supply the demand. The becretary advises that the issue of gold certifi cates should not, for the present, be resumed and suggests that the national banks may be properly forbidden by law to retire their currency except upon reasonable notice of their intention to do so. Such leg islation would seem to be justified by the re construction of certain banks on the occasion referred to in the secretary's report. Of the $15,000,000 of fractional currency still outstanding, only about $SO,OOO has been redeemed the past year. The suggestion that this amount may properly be dropped from future statements of the public debt seems worthy of approval. So also does the sug gestion of the secretary as to the advisability of relieving the calendar of the United I States courts in the southern districts of New ST, PAUL, WEDNESDAY MORNING, DECEMBER 7, 1881. York, by the transfer to another tribunal of the numerous suits there pending against col lectors. CUSTOMS. The revenue from customs for the past fiscal year was $191,598,760.20, an increase of $11, --637,611.42 over that of the preceding year; $138,098,562.39 of this amount was collected at the port of New York, leaving $50,251,523.63 as the amount collected at all the other ports of the country. Of this sum $47,&77,187.63 was collected on sugar and molasses, $27,285,624.78 0n wool andlts manu factures, $2,462,534 34 of iron and steel and manufactures thereof, $19,038,665.81 on manufactures of silk, $10,825,115.21 on manu factures of cotton, $6,469,642.04 on wines and spirits; making the total revenue from those sources $133,058,720 81. The expenses of collection for the past year were $6,419,845.20, an increase over the pre ceding year of $387,410.04. Notwithstanding the increase in revenue from customs over the previous years; to gross value of the imports, including free goods, decreased over $25,000, 000. The marked decrease was in the value of manufactured wool, $14,023,682, and in that of scrap and Dig iron, $12,810 671. The value of imports of sugar,on the other hand, showed an increase of $7,457,474; of steel rails $4,345,521; of barley $2,154,204; and of steel in bars, etc., $620,046. Contrasted with the imports the exports were as follows: Domes tic merchandise, $90,039,559.47; foreign mer chandise, $184,513.99. Total, $90,223,773 46 Imports of merchandise, f6,426,640.28. Ex cess of exports over imports of merchand S3, $597,127.18. Aggregate of exports and im ports, $15,450,419 74. Compared with the previous year there was <m increase of $667,386.88 in the value of ex ports of merchandise, and a decrease of $232, --90118 in the* value of imports. The annual average of increase of imports of merchandise over exports thereof for 10 years previous to June 30, 1873, was $1,488,922, but for the last six years there has been an excess of ex ports over imports of merchandise amount ing to $11,806,681.03, an annual average of 81,967,780 17. The specie value of the exports of domestic merchandise was $3,766,164.73 in 1870, and $8,839,259 47 In 1881, an in crease of $3,073,094 74, or 135 pc cent. The value of imports was $435,958,408, in 1870, and $642,664,628, in 1881, an increase of $206,762,200, or 47 per cent. During each year from 1862 to 1879, in clusive, the exports of specie exceeded the imports. The largest excess of such exports over imports was reached during the year 1864. when it amounted to $92,'204,9iy; but during the year ending June 30, 1880, the imports of coin and bullion exceeded the imports by $75, 891,391, and during the last fiscal year the ex cess of imports over exports were $91,168,650. In the last annual report of the secretary of the treasury the attention of congress was called to the fact that $469,651,050 in 5 per centum bonds and $203,573,750 in 6 per centum bonds were become redeemable during the year, and congress was asked to authorize the refunding of these bonds at a lower rate of interest. The bill for such refunding hav ing failed to oeeome a law, the secretary of the treasury in April last notified the holders »f the $195,690,400 6 per cent, bonds then out standing, that the bonds would be paid at par on the first day of July following, or that they might be continued at the pleasure of the government to bear interest at the rate of 3x per centum per annum. Under this no tice $178,055,150 of the 6 per centum bonds were continued at the lower rate and $17,635, --250 were redemed. In' the month of May a like notice was given respecting the redemp tion or continuance of the $439, --841,350 of 5 per cent, bonds then outstanding. Of these $401,504,900 were con tinued at 3x t»er centum p«r annum, and $38, --336,450 redeemed. The 6 per cent, bonds of the loan of July 8, 1861, and of the Oregon war debt, amounting together to $14,121,500, having matured during the year; the secretary of the treasury gave notice of his intention to redeem the same, and such as have been pre sented have been paid from the surplus reve nue,. There have been also redeemed at par $16,179,100 of the 3% per centum continued oonds, making a total of bonds redeemed or which have ceased to bear interest luring the year, of $123,969,650. The reduc tion of the annual interest on the public debt through these transactions is as follows: By eduction of interest to 3# per cent , $10, --483,952.27; by redemption of bonds, $6,352,- H4O. Total, $16,826,295.27. The 3>£ per cent, bonds, being payable; at the pleasure »f the government, are available for the investment of surplus revenue with out the payment of premiums unles* these bonds can be fund-d at a much lower rate of interest than they now bear. I igree with the secretary of the treasury that no legislation respecting them is desirable. It is a matter for congratulation that the business of the country has been so prosper ous during the past year as to yield by taxa tion a large surplus of income to the govern ment. If the revenue laws remain unchanged this surplus must year by year increase on ac connt of the reduction of the public debt and its burden of interest, and because of the rapid increase in our population. In 1860, ju»t prior to the institution of our internal revenue system, our popula tion but slightly exceeded thirty millions. By the censues of 1880 it is now fouud to exceed fifty millions. It i 9 estimated that even if the annual receipts and expenditures should continue as at present the entire debt could be paid in ten years. In view, however, of the heavy load of taxation which our people have already borne, we may well con sider whether it is not the part of wisdom to reduce the revenues even if we delay a little the payment of the debt. It seems to me that the time has arrived when the people aiay justly demand some re lief from their present enormous burden, and that by due economy in the various branches of the public service this may readily be afford ed. I therefore concur with the secretary in recommending the abolition of all internal revenue taxf-s except tho?e upon tobacco in its various forms, and upon distilled spirits and fermented liquors, and except also th» special tax upon the manufacturers of and dealers in such articles. The retention of the latter tax is aesirable as affording the offi cers of the government a proper supervision of the articles for the prevention of fraud. I agree with the secretary of the tieasury that the law imposing a stamp tax on matches, proprietary articles, playing cards and drafts may with propriety be repealed ani the law also by which banks and bankers are assessed upon their capital and deposits. There seems to be a general sentiment in favor of this course. In the present condition of our revenues the tax upon deposits is especially unjust. It was never imposed in this country uutil it was demanded by the necessities of war, and never exacted^! believe, in any other country, even in its greatest exigencies. Bankers are required to secure their circula tion by pledging with the treasurer of the United S;ates bonds of the general govern ment. The interest upon these bonds, which, at the time when the tax was imposed was 6 per cent , is now in most instances 3% per cent., and besides the entire circulation wa ! originally limited by law, and no increase was allowable. When the existing bank 3 had practically a monopoly of the business there was force in the suggestion that for the fran chise to the favoring grantees, the govern ment might very properly exact a tax on circulation, but for years the system has been free and the amount of circulation has been regulated by the public demand. The retention of this tax has been suggested, a* a means of reimbursing the gov ernment for the expense of printing and furn ishing the circulating notes. If the tax should be repealed it would certainly seem proper t<> require the national banks to pay the amount of such expense to the comptroller of the cur rency. It is perhaps doubtful whether the Imme diate reduction of the rate of taxation npon iiquors and tobacco is advisable, especially in view of the drain upon the treasury, which must attend the payment of arrears of pensions. A comparison, however, of the amount of taxes collected under the varying rates of taxation which have at different times prevailed, suggests the intimation that some eduction may soon be made without a dimin ution of the revenue. THE TARIFF. The tariff laws also need revising, but that a due regard may be paid to the conflicting interests of our citizens, important changes should be made with caution. If a carefui revision cannot be made at this session, a com mission such as was lately approved by th» senate, and is now recommended by the secretary of the trereury, would doubtless lighten the labors of congress whenever this subject shall be brought to its consideration. WAB DEPARTMENT. The accompanying report of the secretary of war will make known the operations of that department for the past year. He sug gests measures for promoting the efficiency of the army, by adding to the number of of ficers, and recommends legislation necessary to increase the number of enlisted men to 30,000— The maximum allewed by law. This he deems necessary t o protect the frontier, to preserve peace and disorders and marauding in new Bet tlements, to protect settlers and their proper ty against Indians and against encroachments of intruders, and to enable peaceable emi grants to establish homes in the most remote parts of our country. The army is now necessarily scattered over such a vast extent of territory, that whenever an outbreak occurs, reinforcements must be hurried from many quarters over a great dis tance at heavy cost of transportation of men, horses, wagons a id supplies. I cencur in the re commendations of the secretary for increasing the army to the strength of 30,000 enlisted men. It appears by the secretary's report that in the absence of disturbances on the frontier, the troeps have been actively employed in col lecting Indians hitherto hostile, and locating them on their proper reservations; that Sit ting Bull and his adherents are now prisoners at Fort Randall; and thai the Utes have been moved to their new reservation in Utah. Dur ing the recent outbreak of the Apaches it was necessary to reinforce the garrisons in Arizona by troops withdrawn from New Mexico. Some of the Apaches are now held prisonersfor trial, while some have escaped, and the majority of the tribe are now on their reservation. There is need of legislation to prevent in trusion upoH the lands set apart for the In dians, as a large military force, at great ex panse, is now required to patrol the boundary line between Kansas and the Indian Treritory. The only punishment that can at present be inflicted is the forcible removal of the intruder and the imposition of a pecuniary fine, which, in most cases, it is impossible to collect. There should be a penalty by imprisonment in such cases. THE SIGNAL SERVICE. The separate organization of the signal ser vice is used by the secretary of war, a full statement of the advantages of such perma nent organization is presented in the report of the chief signal service officer. A detail of the usual work performed b;. the signal curps and the weather bureau is also given in that report. I ask attention to the statement of the sec retary of war regarding tlw requests frequently made by the Indian bureau upon the subsist ence department of the army for the casual support of bands or tribes of Indians, which tppropriations are exhausted. The war de partment should not be left, by means of in adequate provision for the Indian nureau, to contribute for the maintainance of Indians. The report of the chief of engineers furnish es a detailed account of the operation for the improvement of rivers and harbors. I recommend to your attention the eugges 'ion6 contained in this report in regard to the condition of our fortifications, especially our •oist defenses, and recommend an increase in the strength of the engineer battalion, by which the efficiency of our torpedo system would be improved. I also call your attention to remarks on the improvement of the south pass of the Missis sippi river, the proposed free b'idge over the "Potomac river at Georgetown, the importance of completing it an early day, of the noith wing of the de partment building, and other recommenda tions of the secretary of war which appear in his report. The actual expenditures of this department for the fiscal year ending June 30, 1881, were $48,122,20139. The appropriations for tht year 1882 were $44,829,725. The estimates for 18S3 are $44,541,276. THE NAVT. The report of the secretary of the navy ex hibits the condition of that branch of the service, and presents valuable suggestions as to its improvement. I call your special atten tion also to the appended report of the advisory board, which he convened to devise suitable measures for increasing the efficiency of the navy, and particularly to the report as to the character and number of vessels necessary to place it upon a footing commensurate with the necessities of the government. I cannot too strongly urge upon you my conviction fhat every consideration of national safety, economy and honor imperativly demands a thorough rehabilitation of our navy. With a full appreciation of the fact that compliance with the suggestions of the head of the department and of the advisory board involve a large expenditure of the public moneys, I earnestly recommend such appro priation as will accomplish' in "he end that which seems to be so desirable. Nothing can he more inconsistent with true public economy than withholding the means necessary to ac compi'ph tbe objects entrusted by the consti tution to the national legislature. One of three objects, and one which is of paramount importance, is declared by all a fundamental law,to be the provision for "common defense." Surely nothing is more essential to the de fense of the United Stat-s and all of our people than the efficiency of our navy. Wb have for many years maintained with for eign governments the relations of honorable peace, and that such relations may be perma nent is desired by every patriotic citizen of the republic. But if we heed the teachings of history we shall not forget that in the life of every nation emergencies may arise when a re sort to arms can alone save it from dishonor. No danger from abroad now threatens this ppople, nor have we any cause to distrust the friendly profe? 6ions of other governmeuts, hut for avoiding as well as foi quelling dan gers th"t may threaten us in future, we must be prepared to face any policy which we think best to adopt. We must b9 ready t« defend our harbor against aggression, to protect the distribution of our ships of war over the high ways of commerce, and maintain varied inter ests of our foreign trade and the personal property of our citizens and honor of our flag, and the distinguished portion which we may rightfully claim among the nations of the world. OUR MAIL SERVICE. The report of the postmaste r general is a gratifying exhibit of the growth and efficienay of the postal service. The receipts from postage and ordinary sources during the past fiscal year were $36,489,816.58. The receipt* from money order business were $295,581.39, making a total of $36,785,397 97. The ex penditure for the fiscal year was $69,251, --736 46. The deficit supplied out of the gen eral treasury was $3,481,129.35, or 63 per cent, of the amount. The receipts were $3,469, --918.63 in excels of those of the previous year and $4,575,397 97 is excess of the estimate made two years ago, before the present period of business prosperity had fairly begun. The whole number of letters carried in this country in the last fiscal year exceeded 1,000, 000.00 D. The registry system is reported to >c in excellent conditi»n,been having remodel ed during the past four years with good results. The amount of registration fees collected dur ing the last fiscal year was $712,882.20, an in crease over the fiscal year ending June 30, 1877, of $345,443.40. The entire number of letters and packages registered during the year was 8,338,919, of which only 2,061 were de stroyed or lost in transit. The operations of the money order system are multiplying yearly. Under the impulse of immigration and the rapid development of the newer states and ter ritories, and the consequent demand for addi tional means of intercommunication and ex change, during the past year 338 additional money order offices h*ve been established, making a total of 5 499 in operation at the date of this report. During the year the domestic mon"y orders aggre gated in value $10,507,596 93. A mod ification of the system is suggested, reducing the fees for money orders not exceed ing $5 from ten cents to five cents, and mak ing the maximum $100 in place of $50. Leg islation for the disposition of unclaimed money orders in the possession of the post office department is recommended, in view of the fact tbat their total value exceeds $1, --000,080. The attention of congress is again pointed to the subject of establishing a system savings deposits in connection with the postofflce de partment. THE STAS ROUTES. The statistics of mail transportation show that during the past year railroad routes have been increased in length 6,249 miles, and in •ost $1,114,383, while steamboat routes have been decreased in length 2,182 miles, and in cost $134,054. The so-called star routes have been decreased in length 3,934 miles, and in cost |3P4,i44. Nearly all of the expensive routes have been superceded. The cost of the ■star route service therefore has rapidly de creased in the western states and territories. The postmaster general, however, calls atten tion to the constantly increasing cost of the railway mail service as a serious difficulty in the way of making the department self sus taining. Our postal intercourse with foreign countries has kept^race with the growth of the domestic service. Within the past year everal countries and colonies have declared their adhesion to the postal union. It now includes all those which have an organized postal service, except Bolivia, Costa Rica, New Zealand, and the British colonies in Australia. As has been already stated great redactions have recently been made in the expense of the star route service. The investigation of the department of justice and the postofflee de partment have resulted in the presentation of indictments against persons formerly connect ed with that service, accusing tbem of offen ses against the United States. I have enjoined upon the officials who are charged with the (Klpbe. conduct of the government and upon th« •mi nent counsel who, before my accession to the presidency, were called to their assistance, the duty of prosecuting with the utmost vigor of the law, all persons who may be found charge able with fraud upon the postal service. BELIEF FOB THE COUBT3. The acting attorney general calls attention to the necessity of modifying the present sys tem of the courts of the United states, a ne cessity due to the large increase of bnsiness, especially in the supreme court. Litigation in our federal tribunals became greatly ex panded after the close of the late war. So long as that expanse might be attributed to the abnormal condition in which the com munity found itself immediately after the return of peace, prudence required that no change be made in the constitution of judicial tribunals. But as it has now become apparent that the immense increase of litigation has resulted from the wonderful growth and development of the country, there is no ground for belief that the business of the United States court will ever be less in volume than at present Indeed, that it is likely to be much greater is generally recognized by the bench and bar. In view of the fact that congress has already giv en much consideration to this subject,* I make no suggestion as to detail, but express the hope that your deliberations may result in such legislation as well as give early relief to our over-burdened court. LAWLESSNESS IN ARIZONA. ; The acting attorney general also calls atten tion to the disturbance of the public tranquil ity , during ; the '. past year . in the Territory of Arizona. A band of armed desperadoes known as cow boys, probably j numbering \ from fifty to one hundred men have been engaged for months in committing acts of lawlessness and brutality which ; the - local authorities have beea unable to repress. . The depredations of these ' cow boys • have also . been extended into Mexico, ..which the marauders , reach .; . <rom ... " the Arizona frontier. With every disposition to meet the exigencies of the case, I am embarrassed by lack of authority to deal with them effectually. The punishment of crimes committed within Arizona should ordinarily, of course, be left to the territorial authorities; but it is worthy of consideration whether * acts which ' neces sarily tend to embroil the United States with neighboring governments should not be de clared crimes against the United States. Some of the incursions alluded to, may perhaps be within the scope of the laws of the ! revised statutes, section 5,286, forbidding military ex peditions or enterprises aga nst friendly states But in view of the speedy assemblage of your body, I have preferred to await such legisla tion as in your j wisdom the | occasion may seem to demand. . It may perhaps be thought proper to provide ' that the setting on ; foot within our own territory of brigandage and armed marauding expeditions, against friendly natives and their citizens, shall be punishable as an offense against the Unit d States. - I will add that id the advent of a request from \ the territorial government, for protection •! by the United States against domestic violence, thi government would be powerless to render assistance. ■ ."■■-■; The act of 1795, chapter 36, passed at a time when the territorial goverment received little attention from congress, enforced this duty of the United States only as to state govern ments, bat the act of 1807, chapter 39, applied also to territories. This law teems to have remained in force until the revision of the stat utes, when the provision for the territories was dropped. lam not advised whether this alteration was intent onal or accidental, but as it seems to me that the territories should be offered the protection which is 1 accorded to the states by the constitution, . I suggest legislation to that end. '-..:.: ':• :: : - n It seems to me that whatever view may pre vail as to the policy of recent legislation, by. which the army has ceased to be a part of the posse comitatus, -n exception might : well be made for permitting the military to assist the civil territorial authorities in enforcing . the laws of the United States. This use of the army would not seem to Sbe I the alleged evil against which that legislation was i aimed.' From eparseness of population and other cir cumstances it is quite ■ practicable to summon a civil posse in places where the officers _of justice reqnire ; assistance, .where a military force is within easy reach. ;. ; : ; INTERIOR DEPARTMENT. ; - T _ The report of the secretary of the interior, with accompanying documents, presents an elaborate account of the business of that de* partment. A summary of it would be too ex tended for this place. I ask your careful at tention to the report itself. Prominent among the matters which challenge the attention; of congress at its [ present session, is the man agement of our Indian : affairs. .While, this question has been a cause of trouble and embar rassment from the infancy of the govern ment, it is but recently that any effort has been made for its solution in a manner serious, determined, consistent and promising success. j It has been easier to resort to . convenient makeshifts for tiding over the temporary dif ficulties, than to grapple with the great per manent problem, and accordingly the easier course has almost invariably been pursued; It was natural at a time ' when the national terri tory seemed almost illimitable,' and contained many millions of acres far south of the bounds of civilized settlements, that a policy, should have been initiated ' which ' , more than . aught ~ . else ' has . ■■ : ; : been *; < " the fruitful source of our Indian complications.' I refer, of courFe, to ' the * policy of dealing with ' ; the various Indian ' tribes as separate nationalities, of regulating them by treaty stipulation to the occupancy of immense res ervations in .the West, ■ and of encouraging them to live undisturbed, and by earnest . and well directed efforts to brine them j under the influence of civilization. The unsatisfactory rules which have sprung from this policy are becoming apparent to all. 'As the white set raents have crowded the borders of the reser vations, the Indians, sometimes contentedly and ; ~ . sometimes v against their -' - will, have been j , transferred ; to V other bunting grounds, \ from - \ which % they have again been dislodged whenever their new found homes have been desired by the ad venturer settlers. \ The removals and the frontier collisions by which they have often been preceded have led to frequent and disas- j trous conflict between the races. It profits to discuss here which of them have been chiefly responsible for the disturbance, whose . recital occupies so large a space upon the pages of our history. Air have to. deal with the appalling fact that though thousands of >ives have been sacrificed, and hundreds of millions of dollars expended in the attempt . to t solve the Indian problem. It had until within ' the past few years seem d scarcely nearer i a solu tion than it was half a century ago. '•' •'.. But > the government has of late been continuously but steadily feeling its way to the adoption of a plan which has already produced gratifying results, and which in my opinion is . likely,' if congress and the executive accord in its sup port, to relieve us before long from > : the * diffi culties ! ' which ; . have ? hitherto i l b*set ;.! us," 1 and resume - the success *of j the efforts j now making to introduce among • the | Indians the customs and I pursuits of civilized | life and gradually to absorbjthem into the mass of our citizens, sharing their rights and holding to their r responsibilities. * There is imperative need for legislative action. My suggestion in that respect will be chiefly such as hu been already called totne attention of congress and have received to some extent its consideration. ' First I recommend I the . - passage of gan act making the laws of the various states and ter ritories applicable to the Indinn reservations within their borders, and extended the laws of the state of Arkansas to the Indian Territory now occupied by the five civilized tribes. ■'; The Indian I should - receive s the j protection of the law. -. ; He : should ,be ; allowed to maintain in court his rights of person and property. : He has repeatedly begged for the privilege, and its exercise would be very valuable to him in his progress toward civilization. v~ ! " . . ..; Second of '•even'l": greater importance is the * measure "" which has been '■'■'■ fre quently recommended by my predecessor in office, and 'i in furtherance of which several ; bills : ;; have "£ T been from time to time introduced in both houses of congress. The ; enactment : of a ' general law permitting the attachment in severally to such Indians at least as desire it - of ; a reasonable * quantity of land, secured to them by patent and for tneir own protection made inalienable for twenty or twenty-five years, is : demanded " for their present ■ welfare and their permanent advance ment. In return for such consideration on the part of the government there is reason to be lieve that the Indians in large numbers wouldl be persuaded gg£ to ; : .' sever - their ''.... triba relations and to engage at once in agricultural pursuit*, and that -it -i«: now f; for their best interests to conform their manner of life to the new order of things. By no greater in ducement than the assurance of a ~ permanent title of the soil can they be led to engage gin the occupation of tilling it. The well attested report of the increasing interest* in husbandry justify the hope and belief that the enactment of if 1 such ag? statute K >'»s 7}l s « recommend would tbef- at once ■': attended ■ with ,* grati fying results. Resort to the allotment system would have direct and powerful I influence lin dissolving tribal bonds, which is a prominent feature or savage life, and which led so strong ly to perpetuate" it there. * " .;->;:^ I Mtrlfe • Wend appropriation la Ktpport of Indian schools, because of my confident belief that such a course is consistent with j the wis est economy, even among the most uncultured Indian tribes. There is reported to be a gen eral and argent desire on the part of the chiefs and older members for the education of I their children "It is unfortunate, in , Vie of this fact, that during; the past the means which have been at the connaand of the -. interior depart ment for the purpose of Indian instruction, have proved t) be utterly inadequate. The success of the schools which are in operation at Hampton, C i -lisle and Forest Grove, should not only encourage a more generous provision for the support of the institutions, but should prompt the establishment of others of a ' sim ilar . character They - are r doubtless - much more potent for good than the - day ■ schools upon the reservations, and the pupils are al together pepar:.t"d from the surroundings of savage life, and brought into constant con tact with civilization. I : There are many other phases of the 6ub-l ject which are rof great interest, but whichl cannot be included- within the becoming limj its of this cucLm^^aiM^^^Mßi^B 'discussed in the reports of the secretary of the interior, aad of the commissioner of lu dian affairs. THE MORMON QUESTION. For many yeirs, the executive, in his annual message to coi gress, has urged the necessity of stringent legislation for the suppression «f poligamy In the territories, especially in Utah. The existing statute for the punish ment of thij odious crime, so revolt ing to the moral and religious sense of Christianity, has been persistency and contempt nsly violated ever since its en actment. lnd<ed, in spite of commendable efforts on the part of the authorities who represent the United States in that territory, the law has in every way and instance been ignored and U r a cause to which reference will presently je made, is practically a dead leUer. The fa Jt that adherents of the Mor mon church, which rests upon polygamy as its corner ston 3, have recently been settling in large nun hers in Idaho', Arizona, and Utah, our Western territories, is well calculated *> excite the liveliest interest and apprehension. It imposes upon congress and the executive the duty of t war against :his barbarous system wit', all the power which, under the constitution an<l law, tUey can yield for its destruction. Rif erence has beei already made to the obstacle* to which the United States officers have en countered in their efforts to punish violation of the law. Prominent among the obstacles is the difficult? of procuring legal evidence sufficient to warrant a conviction, even in the ■•ase of most notorious offenders. Your attention is called to the decision of the supreme court o' the United Bta «s explaining its judgment of reversal in the ca«e of Miles, who had been ■•onvicted of b gamy in Utah. The court re fers to the fad. that the secrecy attending the celebration ol marriages in that territory makes the pro )' of polygamy very difficult, and the proprl jty is suggested of modifying that law of evidence which now makes a wife incompetent to testify against her husband rhis suggestion is approved. I recommend *lso the passir zof an act pioviding that in the territories of these United States the fact that a woman has been marriel to a person charged with bigamy shall not disqualify her as a witness upon his trial for that offense. I further recommend legislation by which any person solemnizing a marriage in any of the territories shall be required, un der stringent penalties for neglect or refusal, to file a certificate of such marriage in the su preme court of the territory, unless congress mny devise other practicable measures for obviating the difficulties which have hereto fore attended -he efforts to suppress this in iquity. I asst re you of my determin°d pur pose to co-operate with you in any lawful and discreet rneasi res which may be proposed on thai end. EDUCATION. Although cur system of government does not contemplate that the nation should pro vide or support a sjstem for the education of our people, no measures calculated to pro mote their general Intelligence and virtue upon which tbe perpetuity of our institutions so greatly depends, have been regarded with indifference ty congress or the executive A large portion of the public domain has been, from time to time, de voted to tii? promotion of education. There is specii J reason why by setting apart the proceeds in the sales of public lands, or hy some . other cause, the government should aid tie work of education. Many who now cxc cisc tbe right of suffrage are unable to real the ballot which they cast. This was espe jially notable among those who had just emerged from a condition of slavery upon whom was suddenly devolved the respon sibilities of citizenship in that portion.of the country most mpovenshed by war. I have been pleased to leai n from the report of the commis sioner of educ ation that there has been lately « considerable increase of interest and effort for their instruction, but all that can be done by local legislation and private generosity should 'be supplemented by such aid as can be constitu tionally tende red by the national government. I would suggest that if any fund be dedicated to this purpot c, it may be wisely distributed iv the differed states, according to the rates of illiteracy, es by this means those localities which are most in need of such assistance will reap its s jeclal benefit. The report at the commissioner of agricul ture exhibits results of the experiments in which that de partment has been engaged in during the pi.st year, and makes important suggestions in reference to the agri cultural development of the country. The steady In ;rease in our population and the consequent additions to the number of those engaging in the pursuits of husbandry, ar giving to this department a growing dignity and importance. The commissioners' sug gestions touc ling its capacity, for greater use fulness, deser'e attention, as it more and more commends it if If to the interest which it was created to pre mote. It appears from the report of the com missioners of pensions, that since I860) 789,063 original pension claims have been filed. Of these 450,919 have been allowed and inscribed on the pension roll; 72,5H4 1 aye been rejected and abandoned, being 13 pc - cent, of the whole number of claims settled. There are now pending fur fettlement 2(5,575 original pension claims, 212,040 of whuh were filed prior to July 1, 1880. These when allowed will involve the payment of ai rears from the date of discharge, in case of an invalid, and from dat# of death or termination of prior right, on all other case*. From all the data attainable it is estimated that 15 per cent. of the number of claims now pending will be reject ed or ab^ii'lo! Ed This would shew the prob able rejection of 34,040 cases, and the probablt admission of (bout 193,000 claims, all of which involve the payment of arrears of pensions. With the present force employed, the number of adjudications remaining the same, and no business intervening, this nnmber of -claim* (193,000) coi; Id be acted upon in a period of six years, ai d, taking January, 1, 1884, as a near period : rom which to estimate on each case the avert g-e amouat of arrears, it is found that every cane allowed would require for the first payment the sum of $1,350. Multiplying this amount by the whole number of prob able admissien*, gives $250,000,000 as the sum required for lirat payments. This represents the sum which must be paid upon claims which were f ! ed before July 1, 1880, and now are pending tnd entitled to the benefit of ar rears from tb is amount, $250,000,000, may be deducted from ten to fliteen millions for cases where, the cl limant dying, there is no person who, under tbe la*, would be entitled to sue ceed to the pension, leaving $235,000000 of the probab c amount to be paid. In these estimates no account has been taken of the 38,500 cases fiLd since June 3C, 1880, and now pending, which mut-t receive attention as current business, but which does not involve the payment of any arrears beyoi d the date of filing the claim; of this numoer it is estimated that S6 per ct-nt. will be allowed. As has been stated, with the pres ent force of the pension bureau, 675 ilerks, it is estimated that it will take six years to dispose of the claims pending. It i stated by the comm ssloner of pensions that by an ad li tion of twenty-fire clerks increasing the adjudicating force rather than the mechanical, double the amount of work could be accom plished, so that these cases could be acted on within tb te years. From consideration of justice, which may be urged, a speedy settle ment of the -laimsnow on file in the pension office should be made. It Is no less important on the score > f economy, inasmuch that fully thirteen of tl c clerical force of the office is now actually occupied in giving attention to correspondet cc with the thousand complain ants whose cises have been on the flies for the last 18 years. Cl TIL SERVICE REFORM. ■, In my letter accepting : the \ nomination for vice president, I stated that .In my judgment no man should be the incumbent of an office; the duties of wbfeb be If for, any e*uM nut mßfc: ■'. ;■}■'"■■■■ •" • ■;■: • ■ . ■ ■■ NO. 341 n°deCo?i'nS y Oi w ; aC h kinß * tta .W' tration If nil m ' hch a P ro Per admin s wSff&^^a^iijv w8 i' entiiii ? iit SSSSpsss has been distrusted, mainly because they have seemerilfo exalt more, educational and abstract tests, above general business capacity and even special fitness for the particular work in hand It seems to me that, the tests that should be applied to the management of the public ser vice may properly conform in the main to inch as regulate : the condition of successful P l™% U l meß Original . appointments should be based jipon ascertained fitness The tenure of office should be stable Posi tions of responsibility should be, so far as practicable; filled by the promotion of worthy and efficient officers. The investigation of all complaints and the punishment of all official misconduct, should be prompt and thorough. The : views expressed in the foregoing letter are those which will govern my administration of the' executive office. They are doubtless shared by all intelligent and patriotic citizens, however . divided in their opinion as ' . to the best method of putting them into practical operation. For example; the suggestion that origin ap nointments should be based on ascertained fitness is not open to disput-, hut the ques tion of how, in practice, such fitness can be most effectually obtained, is one which has for years excited interest and discussion. The measure which, with a slight variation in it? dstails, ha* lately been urged on the attention •if congress and the executive, has its princi ple feature in the scheme of competitive ex amination. Bave for certain exceptions, wh'ch need not here be specified.' this plan wouid give admission to the service only in its lowest grade, and would accordingly demand that all vacancies in higher positions phou'd be filled promotion alone: In these particu lars it is in conformity with the existing civil service system of Great .Britain, and indeed the success which has attended that system in the country of its birth is the strongest argu ment which ha"» been urged for it 1 adoption here. The fact should not, however, be over looked, that there are certain features of the English system which have not generally been received with favor in- this - coun try, even among the foremo ; t ad vocates of civi' service reform. Among th"m are, first, a tenure of office which is substantially a life tenure; second, a 'imitation of the maximum age at which an applicant can enter the service, wber by all men in middle life and older, with some ex ceptions, are rigidly exe'uded; third, a retir ing allowance upon going out of office. These three elements are as important facto of the problem as any of the others. To eliminate therefrom the English system would effect a mo«t radical change in its theory and prac tice. The ■ avowed purpose of that sys tem is -to induce the , educated yonng men of the country to devote their lives to public employment, by an assurance that, hav ing once entered upon it they need never leave it, and that after voluntary retirement they shall be the receipents of an annual p»n? ion. Bnt this system as : an entirety, has proved very nucceKsful in Great Britain, and eeema to be generally conceded, even by those who once opposed its adoption, to be a statute wh'ch we should incorporate in all it* essf tial feature*.-. I should fe< 1 bound to give my approval, but whether it would be for the best interests of the public to fix upon an expedent for its immediate extensive application; wh'ch embraces cortain features of the English system, but excludes or ignores others of equal importance, maybe strenuously doubted, even by those who are impressed as lam with the grave importance of correcting the evil* wh'ch attend the pres ent methods of appointment; for example, if the English rule which shuts out persons above the age of 25 years from a large num ber of 'public employments, were to be made an essential part of our system, it is questionable whether the attainment of the highest num ber of marks at a competitive examination should be the criterion by which all applica tions for appointment should be put to the l'st, and under similar condition' it may also be questioned whether admission to the ser vice could be strictly limited to its lowest rinks. ■/ There are very many characteristics which go to make a model civil servant; prominent among them ar^ properly, industry, good sense, good habits.good temper.pntience, order, courtesy, tact, self reliance, manly, deference to superior officers, and manly con sideration for inferiors. The absence of these habits is not supplied by a wide knowledge of books, or by »romntitude in answering qu s tions, or by any other quality likely to be brought out .by competitive examination j to mane success. In such a contest, therefore, an iniispensible condition of public employ ment would very likely result in the practical exclusion of the older applicant*, even though they might possess qualifications far superior to their youngest and most brilliant competi tors. These suggestions must not .be regarded ■'. as evincing any spirit of opposition to the competitive plan, which has been to some extent successfully em ployed already, and which may hereafter vin dicate the claims of its most earnest support ers, but it ought, to be seriously . considered, whether the application of the same educa tional standard to persons of mature years and young men fresh from school and college, would not be likely.to exalt mere intillectu al proficiency above other qualities of equal or greater importance. Another feature of the proposed system, is ' the selection, by pro motion, f ot all officers of the govern ment above the lowest grade, except such as would fairly be regarded as exponents, of the policy of the executive and the pi inciples of the dominant party. To afford encouragement to faithful public servants, by , exciting in their minds the hope of promotion if they are found to be such as much desired, bnt would it be wi«e to adopt a rule so rigid as to I permit no other mode of ; supplying, the intermediate walks of the servants? There are many per sons who fill subordinate positions with great credit, but lack those qualities : which are re quisite . for higher posts of duty, and besides, the modes of thought and action of one whose service in a governmental bureau ban been long con tlnued, are often so cramped by routine pro cedure as almost to disqualify him from insti tuting the changes required by public interests •nd the infusion of new blood from time to t-me to the middle rank's of the service might be very beneficial in its ' results. The subject under discussion is one of grave importance. The events which are complained of cannot he eradicated at once. The work must be gradual. The present English system "is a growth -of years aid was not. created by a single stroke of executive or legislative . action. Its be ginning was found in an order in the council promulgated in 1855, and it was after patient and cautions scrutiny of its working, that fi'teen years later.it took its present shape. Five years after the issuance, of the order by the council and at a time when resort had been had .to competitive examination as an experi ment, much more extensively than has yet, been the case in this country, a select committee of the house of commons made a report to that house which while • declaring • its approval of the competitive method deprecated never theless any precipitancy in its general adop tion as likely to endanger it« ultimate success. During thin tentative period the result of the two methods of pass examination and com oetative examination was can-fully scrutinized. It may be, that before" we con fire ourselves ur»on this .. Important question within the stringent bounds ' of statutory enactment, we may profitably await the. result of further in quiry and experiment. The submis sion v-of• -a ■; portion of the . nomina tions to "a central board of examiners selected solely for testing the qual ifications of applicant* may perhaps w thont resort to the competitive test, put an end to the mischief, which attend? the present system of appointment, and it m*y he feasible to vest in such a board a wide discretion to ascertain the characteristic* and. attainments of candi dates ;■ In these particulars which 'I ; have al ready referred to as being no less important than ~ mere ' Intellectual, attainment. . If con gress should deem it advisable at the present session to establish competitive, tests for ad- . mission to the service, no doubt such a* have been ,;^ suggested t. shall ;; deter, me from givlne the measure' my. earnest support, and " : I urgently recommend, should there be a failure to pass any other act on this subject, that an , Appropriation of $25,000 per Tcr.be made for the enforcement |of section J 1 753 jof the revised statute. With tbe aid thus offered me I shall strive to execute the provisions " of that law according to the letter and spirit. •„:* I am unwilling, <in] justice to ; the i present civil J servant* of the * government, to dismiss *.his subject without declaring my dissent from ; the severe and almost indiscriminate censure with which they have been recently assaulted. That they are) as! a class indolent, inefficient, and corrupt Is a statement * which has been : often made and widely credited, but when the extent, variety, delicacy : and * importance of their duties are considered, the great majority Continue* on Second Page.