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The Jeffersonian Democrat. [volume] (Chardon, Ohio) 1854-1865, December 15, 1865, Image 1

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VOL. XVII, NO. 51.
President's Message.
Follow Citizens of the Senate
and Home of Representatives.
To cxprosa gratitudo to God, in tbo nnmo
of tbo pooplo, for tbo preservation of the
United Sates, is ray first duty io addressing
you. Our thoughts next retort to tbo death
of the lato President by an act of porricidul
treason. The grief of iho nation is still fresh
'it finds some solace in tlio consideration
tbat bo lived to enjoy tbo bigbost proof of
its confidonc by cntoriog on Xbo renowed
term of the Cbitf Magistracy, to which bo
had boon elected; that bo brought tho civil
war substantially to a closet that bis toes
was deplored In all parta of tbo Union; and
tbat foreign nations bare rendered justico to
bis memory. His removal csst upon me a
heavier weight of cares tbaa over devolved
upon any of bis predecessors. To fulfill my
trust I need tbo support and confidence of
all wbo are associated with tuo in the various
dppartmcnta of Government, and the sup
port and coofidenco of tho people. There
is but one way in which I can hope to gain
tbofr necessary aid; it is, to state with frank
noss the priociplos which guido my oonduct,
.and their application to tbe present stale of
affairs, well aware tbat tbo efficiency of my
labors will, in a groat measure, depend on
your and their undivided approbation.
Tbe Union of tbo United States of Arocrl
ca was Intended by its authors to last as long
aa tbe Btalea themselves shall last. "The
Union shall bo perpetual," .ro tbo words of
tbe Confederation. "To form a more per
foct Union, by an ordinanco of tho people
of tho United States, is the dcclarod pur-
Eoso of tbe Constitution. Tbo band of
Hviue Providence was nover more plainly
visiblo in tbe affairs of men than in tho fram
ing and tbe adopting of tbat instrument.
It is, boyond comparison,. the greatest event
iri American history; and iudond is it not, of
all ovonts in modern times, tbo most prog
rant with consequences for overy pooplo ol
the oarih? Tbe members of the Conven
tion which prepared it, brought to their
.work the experionco of the Confederation,
of tboir Beveral States, and of other Repub
lican Govornmeota, old and new; but they
needed anH they obtained a whidoin superior
to experience. And when for its validity it
requirod the approval of a people that occu
pied a largo part of a continont and actod
Separately in many distinct conventions,
what ia more wonderful than that after earn
est contention and long discussion, all foot
ings and all opinions woro ultimately drawn
in one way to its support ?
Tho Constitution to wblob life was thus
imparted contains within itsolf ample re
sources for its own preservation. It bas
power to enforce the laws, punish troason:
aud insure domestio tranquility. In case of
-usurpation ot too Uovernment ot a Stato by
one m&n.or an oligardhy.it become tbo duly
of tbe United Slates to mako eood tbo eruar-
anteo to tbat. State of a republican form of
government, and so to maintain the homo
gonoousncss of all. Does the lapse of time
rovesl dofects ? A simplo tnodo of amend
ment is providod in tbe Constitution itsolf,
bo that its conditions can always be made to
conform to tbo requirements of advancing
civilisation. No room ia allowed even for
tbe thought of a possibility of ita coming to
an end. And these powers of self-preservation
bave always been assorted in tbeir com-
filete integrity by every patriotio Chief Mag
s t rate by Jefferson and Jackson, cot less
than by Washington and Madison. Tho
parting advico of tbe Father of bis Country
wbilo yet President, to the peopto of tbe
United States, was that "tbe froo Constitu
tion, which was tbe work of their hands,
might be sacredly maintained;'' and tbe in
augural words of President Jefferson bold
up "tbe preservation of tho General Govern
ment; in its constitutional vigor, as the sheet
anobor of our peace at home and saflv
abroad." Tbe Constitution is tbe work of
the "People o( the United Statos," BDd it
should be aa Indestructible as tbo people.
It Is not ttrango tbat tho froroors of tho
Constitution, which bad no model In tbo
past,sbonld not have fully comprehended
tbe excellence of tboir own work, Fresb
from a struggle against arbitrary power,
many patriots suffered from barrassing fears
of an absorption of the State Governments
by tbe Uenoral uovernment, and many
from a dread tbat tbe States would break
ewoy from tbeir orbits. But tbo vory great
ness of our country should allay tbe appro-
honsion of encroachments by tbe General
Government. The subjects tbat come un
questionably within its jurisdiction aro so
numerous, tnat it must evor naturally rpruse
to be embarrassed by questions tbat lie be
yond it. Were it otherwise, tbe Executive
. would sink beneath the burden; tbe chan
nels of justice would be choked; legislation
would be obstructed by excess; so that there
ia a greater temptation to exorcise some of
the functions of tbe General Government
through the States tban to trespass on tbeir
rightful spbore. "The absolute acquiescence
in the decisions of the majority" was, at tho
beginning of tbe century, enforced by Jef
ferson "aa tbe vital principle of republics,'
and tbo events of tbe last four years bave
established, wo will hope forever, tbat tbere
lies no appeal to force.
The malntenapce of tbe Uoion brings with
It "the support of tbe State Governments
io all tbeir rights;" but it Is not one of the
rights of any State Government to rouounce
ita own place in tbe Union, or to nullify tbe
laws of tbo Union. The largest liberty is
to be maintained in tbe discussion of tbo
aoti of tbe Federal Government; but tbere
is no appeal from ita laws, except to tbe var
tous branches of tbat Government Itself, or
to tho people, wbo grant to the members of
tbo Legislative and ot tne executive Depart
ment! no tenure but a limited one, and In
tbat manner always retain the powora of re
The sovereignty of tbe States" is tbe
language of tbe Confederacy, and .not tho
language of tbe Constitution. Tbo latter
contains tbe emnbatio words. "The Const!.
I ution and tbe laws of tbe of tbe United
Mates which shall be made in pursuancd
thereof, and all treaties made or wbicb sball
be made tbe authority of tba United 8:ates
thall be the supreme law of the land; and
tbe judges ia every State shall bo boond
thereby, anything in tliccoiistitutlonjor laws
of aty Stale to ibo contrary iiolvilbstand-
Certainly the Government of tho United
States is a limited Government, and so is
overy State Govornmeot a limited Govern
ment. With ut, this idea of limitation
spreads 'through ovory form of administra
tion, general, Mate and municipal, ond rests
on the groat distinguishing priuolplo of tbo
recognition of the rights of man. Tbo an
cient republics absorbed tbo individual in
tbe Mate, prescribed his religion and con
troll his activity. Tbo American system
rests on tho assertion of tho equal right of
every mnn to life, lilorty, and tho pursuit
of bappiucss; to frocdom of consionco, to
tbo culturo aud rxoiciso of all bis faculties.
As a conscqucnco tbo Stalo Government is
limited, as to tho General Government in
tbe interest of Union, as to tbo Individual
citizen in tbe interest of freedom.
States, with propor limitations of power,
are essential to existonco of tbe Constitu
tion of tbo United States. At tbe very com
mencement, when we assumed a placo
among the powers of the earth, tbo Declara
tion of Independence was apoptod by State;
so .also are tbe articles of Confceloraliou;
and wbon "tho people of tbo United Slates"
orduinod ond established tbo Constitution, it
wss tbe assent of tho States, ono by coo,
wbicb gave it vitality. Io tbo event, too, of
any amendment to tho Cdnstltution, tbo
proposition of Congress needs tho confirma
tion of Statos. Without Slates, ono great
branch of tbe legislative government would
bo wanting. And, if wo look beyond tbe
Lot tor of tho Constitution to tho character of
our country, its capacity for comprehend
ing within its jurisdiction a vast coutiucotal
empiro is due to the system of Slates. Tbe
boat security for tho porpotnal existence of
tho StateB is tho "supreme authority" of tbo
Constitution of tho United States. Tbo
perpetuity of tho Constitution brings with
it tho perpetuity of tho Stater; tboir mutual
relation makes us what wo are, and in our
political system their connection is indis
soluble. . The whole cannot exist without
tho parts, nor tbo parts without tho
wholo. So long as tho Constitution of the
United States enduros, tbo States will en
dure; tho destruction of ono is tbe destruc
tion of tbo other; tho preservation of tho
ono is the preservation of tbo other.
I havo thus explained my vlows of iho mu
tual rotations of tho Constitution and the
States, because thoy unfold tboprinoiplos on
which I novo sought to solvo tbo momentous
questions and overoomo tho appalling diffi
culties that mot mo at tho vory commonco
montofmy administration. It' has boon
my steadfast ol joct to oscapo from tho sway
of momentary passions, and to derive a boat
ing policy from tbo fundamental and un
changing principes of tbo Constitution. '
' I found tho StateB suffering from tbo ef
fects of a civil war. ltosistanco to tbo Gen
eral Govornmont appoared to havo exhaust
ed itsolf. Tho United Statos bad recovered
possession of tboir forts and arsenals, and
thoir armies wero in tbo occupation of every
Stato which bad attempted to secede
Wbotbor tho torritory within tbo limits of
thoso States should bo held as conquered
territory, under military authority emanat
ing from tbo President as tbo bead of tbo
army, was tho first question tbat presented
itsolf for decision.
Now, military Governments, established
for an indcfinlto period, would bave offered
no security for tho early suppression of dis
content; would bavdividod tbo pooplo into
tbo vanquishers and tho vanquished; and
would bavo envenomed batrod, rather than
bave restored affection. Onco established,
no precise limit to tboir continuauco was
conceivable. They would bavo occasioned
an incalculable and exhausting expense
Peaceful emigration to and from that por
tion of country Is one of tbo best moans tbat
can be thought of for the restoration of har
mony; and that emigration would have boon
prevented; for what emigrant from abroad,
wbat indrustrious citizen at - homo, would
placo himsolf willingly undor military rnlo?
Tbo chief persons who would havo followed
in tbe train of tho army would bave boon
dependents on tbo General Governments, or
mon who expected profit from miseries of
tboir erring fellow citizens, Tho powers of
patronago and rulo which would bavo boen
exorcised, undor tho President, over a vast,
and populous, and naturally woalthy region
aro greater tban, unless under cxtrcroo nec
essity, I should be willing to ontruBt to any
ono man; they aro such as, for mysolf, I could
nover, unless on occasions of great emergen
cy, consont to exorcise. Tho wilful use of
such powers, if continued through a period
of years, would havo endangered tbe purity
of tbe general Administration and tbo liber
ties of tbe States which remained loyal.
Besides tbo policy of military rnlo ovor a
conquered territory would bave implied that
tbe States wbose inhabitants may bavo ta
ken part in tbe rebellion bad, by tbe act of
those inhabitants, ceased to cxiBt, But the
true theory is. tbat all protended acts of se
cession woro, from tbo beginning, null ond
void. Tbe States cannot commit treason.nor
screen tbo individual citizens who may bave
committed treason, any more tban tbey cbn
make valid treaties or engage in lawful
commerce with any foreign power. Tho
States attempting to sccoug placed them
selves in a condition vboro tboir vitality
was impaired, but not extinguished tbeir
functions'suspendod, but not destroyed.
But If any Stato neglects or refuses to per
form its offices, there ia tbe more nood tbat
the Gonoral Government should maintain
all its authority, and as soon as practicable,
resume tho exorcise ot all its lunctions. (Jo
this principle I bare actod, ond bare gradu
ally and quietly, and by almost impercepti
ble steps, sougbt to restore tbe rightful en
ergy of the General Government and of the
States. To that cod, Provisional Governors
bave boen appointed for tbe Statei,Convon
tions called, Governors elected, Legislatures
assembled, aud Senators and Representa
tives cboaen to tbe Congress of the United
States. At the same tiroe.tbo Courts of tho
United StateB, as far as could be done, bave
been reopoood, so tbat tbe laws of tbe Uni
ted Statos may bo enforced through tbeir
agency. Tbo blockado bas been removed
and too custom houses re-established in
ports Of entry, so tbat tbo roronuo of tbo
United States may bo collected. Tbo Post
t flieo Dopnrimcnt ror.cws its ceatoless activ
iiy.and tbo General Government is thereby
enabled to communlcnto promptly .with its
rflicors and agents. Tbo courts bring secu
rity to persons and proportj; tho opening
of tbo ports invites tbo restoration of indus
try and commerce) tho post-effico renows
the facilities of social intcrcourso and of bus
iness. And is it not happy for us all, that
tho restoration of each ono of theso func
tions of tho General Govornmont brings
with it a blessing to tho States over which
they aro extended? Is It not a sure prom
iso of harmony and renowed attachment to
the Union that, after all that has hnpponod
tho tolutn of tho Gonoral Government Is
known only bb a beneficence?
I know very well that this policy is attend
ed with some risk; that for its success it re
quires at least tbo acqulosonce of tbe States
which it concerns; that it Implies an Invita
tion to tboso States, by renewing tbylr ol
legianco to tho Uuited States, to resume
thoir functions as States of tbo Uoion. Bat
it is a risk that must bo taken; In tho oboieo
of difficulties it is tho sovallost tisk; and to
diminish, and, if posaiblo, to remove all
datgor.I havo felt it Incumbent on mo to as
sert ono other power of tbo General Gov
ernment tbo power of pardon. As no
State can throw a dofonso ovor the crime of
treason, tbe power of pardon is exclusively
vested in tbo Execulivo Government of tho
United Stales. Iu cxerclsiog tbat power, I
bavo tukon precaution to connect it with
tho clearest recognition of tho binding forco
of tbo laws of tho United States, and an un
qualified acknowledgement of tho great so
cial change of condition in regard to slavory
which has grown out of tho war.
Tho next step which I bavo takon to re
store tbo constitutional relations of the
States, has been an Invitation to thorn to
participate iu tho high effioo of amending
ibo Constitution. Every patriot must wIbo
for a gonoral amnoBty at the earliest epoch,
consistent with public safety. For this
great end thoro is need of a concurrence of
all epinions,ond tbo spirit of mutual conclti-.
atiun. . All partios in tho lato torriblo con
flict must work together in harmony. It is
not too much to ask, in tho nnmo of tbo
whole pooplo, that on tbo ono sido, tbe plan
of restoration shall proceed in conformity
with a willingnoss to cast tho disorders of
tbe past iuio oblivion; and tbat, on tbo
otbor.tho ovidenco of sincerity in tbe future
maintenance of tbo Union shall bo put bo
yond any doubt by tbe ratification of the
proposed amendment to tho Constitution,
which provides for tbo abolition of slavery
forever within tho limits of our country. So
long as tbo adoption of this amendment Is
doiayod, Bolong will doubt and joalousy.ond
uncertainty prevail. This is tho measure
which will efface tbo Bad memory of the
past; ibis Is tho caortturo b;ch wilt . most
certainly call population and capital, and
security to tboso parts of tho Union that
ncod tnotn most, tndeod.tt Is not too much
to ask of tbo States wblch aro now resuming
thoir places in tbo family of tho Union to
givo tbis pledgo of porpolual loyalty and
poaco. Until it is deno, tho past, bowovor
much wo may desiro it.will not bd forgotten.
Tba adoption of tbo amondroont reunites
us beyond alt power of disruption. It boats
tho wound that is still imperfectly closed;
it romoves slavery, the elomont which has
so long porploxod and divided tho oountry;
it mokes ot us onco more a nnitod pooplo
renewed and strengthened, bound more
than ovor to mutual Direction and support.
Tbo amondment to tbe Constituton being
adopted, it would remain for the States,
wboso powers bare been so long in abeyance
to reButno thoir places in tho two branches
of Ibo National Legislature and thoroby
complete tho work of roetoration. Horo it
is for you, follow-oitizons of tbo Sonate, and
for you,follow-citizens of tbo'IIouso of Rep
resentatives, to judgo, each of you for your
solvosoftbo elections, returns, and qualifi
cations cf yonr own members,
Tbe full assertion of tho powers of tho
Gonoral Govornmont requires tbo holding
of Cirouit Courts of tbo United Statos with
in tbo districts wboro thoir authority bas
boon intorruptod. In tbe prosont posturo
of our publio affairs, strong objections bave
boen urged to holding those Courts in any
of tbe States wboro tbo rebollion has exist
ed; and it was ascertained by inquiry tbat
tbo Circuit Court of tbo Unitod Statos
would not be bold within tho District of
Virginia during tbo autumn or early wlntor
nor until Congress should bave "an oppor
tunity to considor and act on tbo whole
subject." To your deliberations tbo restor
ation of tbiB branch of tbo civil authority of
tbo Unitod States Is therefore nocossarily
roferrod, with tbo hope that early provision
will bo mado for tbo resumption of all its
functions. It is manifoat tbat troason, most
flagrant In character, has boon committed.
Porsons wbo aro charged with its commis
sion should bave fair and impartial trials in
tho highest civil tribunals of tho country, in
otdor that tbo Constitution and tbo laws
may be fully vindicated; tbe troth cloarly
established and affirmed tbat troason is a
crimo, that traitors should bo punished, and
tbo offomo made infamous; and,at tbo same
time, tbat tho quostion may bo judicially
sottlcd, finally aud forover, that no Stato of
its own will bas tbe right to ronounoe Kb
placo in tbe Uoion.
Tbo relations of Ibo General Govornmont
toward tbe four millions of inhabitants
whom tbe war has called ioto freedom, havo
engaged my most serious consideration.
On the propriety of attempting to mako tbo
froodmon clcotora by the proclamation of
tbe Executive 1 took for my connsol tbo
Constitution itself, the interpretations of
tbat Instrument c-y Its aulnors and tboir
cotemporaries, and recent legislation by
Congress. Wben at the first movemont to
ward independence, tbo Congress of tbe
Unitod States instructed tbo several States
to iostituto Governments of tbeir own, tbey
loft each State to decide for Itself tbe con
ditions for the enjoyment of tbe elective
franchise. During tbo poriod of tbo Con
federacy, tbero contiooed to exist a very
groat diversity in tho qualifications of elect
ors In tbo several Slates; and even wilbina
State a distinction of qualifications pre
vailed with regard to tbe officers wbo wero
to bp chosen. Tho Constitution of tbo
United States reoognlzos theso diversities
when it enjoins that, in the cboico of mem
bers of tho House of Roprosontatives of the
United States, "tbe electors in each Stato
sball have the qalificatious requisite for J
viewers 01 mo most numerous oranob or
tbo Stato Legislature." Alter the formation
of tho Constitution, it romaincd, as before,
tbo uniform usago for each Stato to en
largo tbo body of .its electors, according to
ita own judgment; and, under tbis system,
ono Slate alter another bas proceeded to
iocroaso tho number of its doctors, until
now universal suffrago, or something very
near it, is tbo general rulo. So Cxod was
this reservation of power in the habits of
the pooplo, and so uuqucstionod bas boen
tho iuterpretation of Ibo Constitution, tbat
during tbo civil war tbo lato President
nover tarbored tbe purpose cortalnly nev
er avowed tbo purposo of disregarding it;
and in tbo acts of CoDgress during tbat pe
riod, nothing can bo found wbicb, during
tbe continuanco of hostilities, much loss
after tboir closo, would have sanctioned any
departuro by tbo Exocutive from a policy
which has so uuiformly obtained. More
over, a concession of tbo olectivo franohiso
to tho froodmon, by act of tho President of
tbo United States.must bave boon extended
to all colored men, wborovcr found, and so
must bavo established a change of suf
frago in tho Northern, Middlo and Western
States, not loss than in tbe Soutborn and
South-western. Such an act would bave
created a cow class of votors, and -would
have boon an assumption of power by tbo
President which nothing in tho Constitu
tion or laws of tbo Uuited Statos would
bavo warranted.
' On the other hand, every danger Is
avoided when tbo settlement of lie ques
tion is referred to tbe several Slates.
Tbey can each for itself, decide upon the
measure, and whether it is to be adopted
at once sad absolutely, or introduced by
degrees and with conditions. In my judg
ment, tho freodmen, if they show patience
and manly virtues, will' sooner obtain a
participation in the Elective Franchise
through tho States than through tbe Gen
eral Government, even if it had power to
intervene. When the tumult of emotions
that had been raised by the suddenness
of the change shall have subsided, it may
prove that they will receive the kindliest
usage from some of thoEo on whom tbey
have heretofore most closely depended,
-But while I have no doubt that now,
after the close of the war, it is not compe
tent for tbe Genor&l Government to ex
lend the Elective Franchise in the several
States, it is equally clear that pood faith
requires the security of the (reedmen in
their liberty, their property, their rieht
to labor, and their right to claim the just
relnrn of theixUhor, I cannot urge too
strongly a dispassionate treatment of this
subject, which 6houid be carefully kept
aioot from all party strife; We must
equally avoid haBty assumptions of any
natural impossibility for the two races to
live side by side, in a stato of mutual ben
efit and good will. The experiment in
volves no- inconsistency; lot us, then, go
and make tbat experiment in good faith,
end not be too easily disheartened. The
country is in need of labor, and tho freed
men are in want of employment, culture
and protection. While their right of vol
untary migration and expatriation is not
to be questioned, I would not advise their
forced removal and colonization. . Lot us
rather encourage them to honorable and
useful industry where it may be beneficial
to-themselves and to the country; and in
stead of hasty anticipations of the cer
tainty of failure, lot there ba nothing
wanting to tbe fair trial of the experi
ment. The change in their condition is
the substitution of labor by contract for
the status of slavery. The freedmcn can
not fairly be accuaod of unwillingness to
labor, so long as a doubt remains abont
bis freedom of choice in bis pursuits, and
the certainty ol his recovering bis stipu
lated wages. In this tbe interests of the
employer and the employed coincide.
The employer desires in bis workmen
spirit and alacrity, and these can be per
manently secured in no other way. And
if the one ought to be able to enforce the
contract, so ought the other. The public
interest will be best promoted if the sev
eral States will provide adequate protec
tion and remedies for the freedmcn. Un
til this is in some way accomplished there
is no chance for the advantageous use of
their labor, and the blame of ill success
will not rest on them.
I know that the sincere philanthropy is
earnest for the immediate realization of
its remotest aims; but time is always an
element in reform. It is ono of the great
est acts on record to Lave brought four
millions of people into freedom. Tbe ca
reer of free industry must be fairly opened
to them, and then their future prosperity
end.condition must, after all, rest mainly
on themselves. If they fait, and so per
ish away, let us be careful that the fail
ure shall not be attributable to any denial
of justice. In all that relates to the des
tiny of the freedmen, we need not be too
anxious to read the future; many inci
dents which from a speculative point of
view, might raise alarm, will quicjly set
tle themselves.
Now that slavery is at an end or near
its end, the greatness of its evil, in point
of view of publio economy, becomes more
and more apparent. Slavery was essen
tially a monopoly of labor, and as such
locked the States in which it prevailed
against the incoming of free industry,
W here labor was the property of the cap
italist, the white man was excluded from
employment, or bad but the second best
chance in finding it; and the foreign em
igrant turned away from the region where
bi condition would be so precarious.
With tbe destruction of the monopoly,
free labor will hasten from all parts of the
civilized world to assist in developing va
rious and immeasurable resources which
have hitherto lain dormant. Tba 8 or nina
States nearest the Gulf of Mexico bave a
soil. of exuberant fertility, a climate that
is friendlv to Ion? lifo. and can sustain a
denser population than Is found as yet in
any part of our country. And the future
iuuua ui population io mom win mainiy
be from the North, or from the most cul
tivated nation in RuvAn. Frnm thn nf.
ferings' that have attended during our late
. i i . a .
struggle, lei us took away to tne future,
which is sure to be laden for them with
freater nrnanevitv limn baa r hefnra
, 1 -
been known. Tbe removal of the mo
nopoly of slave labor is a pledge that
those regions will bo peopled by a nu
merous and enterprising popnla'.ion that
111 -J- f ' .1
win vie who any in tne union in com
pactness, inventive genius, wealth end in
dustry. Our Government anin tr from and wia
made for the people not the people for
tne uovernmeut. to mem tt owes alle
giance; from them it must derive its cour-
B?0. Strength and wiarfnm. Rut. white
the uovernment .is thus bound to defer
to the people from whom it derives Us
existence, it fihould. from tVi verv con
sideration of its origin, be stroDg in its
power of resistance to the establishment
v. iuctjui.H4ie., AUluujjUJIVB, fJurfJetUlllVa
and class legislation, are contrarr to the
genius of a tree government, and ought
not io oe allowed. LI ere there is ao
room for vavored classes or monopolies,
the principle of our Government beini?
equal laws and freedom of industry.
nueivici uiuuu(juiy Uklitius B lUOlCUia, II
is sure to be a source of danger, discord
and trouble. We shall but fulfil nnr rlu.
ties as legislators by according "equal
ana exact justice to an men," special
privileges to none. The Government is
subordinate to the neonle: but. as the
agent and representative of the people.
u muse do neia supeiior io monopolies,
wbicb. ic themselves, ought never to be
OTftntPil? fttlfl TtrhirTvttrliPrA (nan r.-Taf tvfel
e subordinate ond yield to the Govern
The Constitution confers on Concrreaa
the right to regulate eommerce amongst
the several States. It is of the first ne
cessity for. the maintenance of tho Union,
ii a a avi m
lo&i commerce aaouia oe tree ana unob
structed. No State can be justified in
any device to tax tbe transit of travel and
commerce between States: The position
of many States is such that, if they were
uuimea io ibbo aavamaee or it for nnr.
poses of local revenue, tbe commerce be-
M Oj - ? 1 .
i ween states migni oe injuriously bur
dened, or even virtually prohibited. It
is best, while tho conntrv ia still vnanv.
and while the tendency to dangerous mo
nopolies or tnis kind are still feeble, to
use tbe power of Congress so as. to pre
vent any selfish impediment to the free
circulation of men and merchandise. A
tax on travel and merchandise, in tbeir
transit, constitutes one of the worst forms
of monosolv. and tho evil ia incrflAsert if
coupled with a denial of the choice of
TTTI .1 . . . . .
route, vv nen me vast extent oi our own
countrv is considered, it is slain that v.
ery obstacle to tbe free circulation of com
merce Deiween tne mates ought to be
sternly guarded against by appropriate
legislation, within the limits of the Con
stitution. The report of the Secretary of the In
terior explains the condition of the publio
lands, the transactions 'of the Patent Of
fice and the Pension Buroau, the manage
ment of our Indian affairs, the progress
made in the construction of Pacific rail
road, and furnishes information in refer
ence to matters of local interest in the
District of Columbia. It also presents
evidence of the successful operation of the
Homestead Act, under the provisions of
which 1,160,533 acres of publio lands
were entered during the last fiscal year
-more than one-fourth of the whole num
ber of acres sold or otherwise disposed of
during tnat period, it is estimated that
the receipts derived from this source are
sufficient to cover tbe expenses incident
to the survey nnd disposal of the lands
entered under this Act.and tbat payments
in cash to the extent of from forty to fifty
per cent, will be made by settlers, who
may thus at any time acquire title before
the expiration of the period at which it
would otherwise vest. The Homestead
policy was established only after a long
and earnest resistance; experience proves
its wisdom. The lands in tbe hands of
industrious settlers, whose labor creates
wealth, and contributes to the publio re
sources, are worth more to tbe United S.
than if they had been reserved as a soli
tude for future purchasers..
The lamentable events of tbe last four
J rears, and the sacrifices made by the gal
ant men of our Army and Navy, bave
swelled tho records of the Pension Bureau
to an unprecedented extent. On the 30th
day of June last, the total number of pen
sioners was 85,986, requiring for their
annual pay, exclusive of expenses, the
sum ol 88,023,445. Tbe number of an
plications that have been allowed since
tbat date will require a large increase ol
this amount for the next fiscal year.
Tho means for the navment of the Blinenda
due, under existing laws, to our disabled
soldiers and sailors, and the families
ol such as have perished In the service
of the country, will no doubt ba cheefnliy
and promptly granted. A grateful peo
ple surely will not hesitate to sanction
anyneasures having for their object the
relief of soldiers mutilated,-and familiei
made fatherless io the efforts to prcsetvo
our national existence.
The report of the Postmaster Genera)
presents an encouraging exhibit of the
operations of the Post Office Department
during the year, The revenues ot tho
past year from the loyal States alone ax
eeeded the maximum annual receipts from
an tne states previous m tne rebellion, in
tbe sum ol 96,038,081; and the annual
average increase of revenue during tho
last four years, compared with tbe reve
nues of the four years immediatelr Pre
ceding the rebellion, was 83,533,845.
Tbe revenues of the last fiscal year has
amounted to 814,558,158, and the ex
penditures to8 13,694,728, leaving a sur
plus of receipts over expenditures of 8bV
61,430. Progress has been made in tt
storing the postal service in the Southern
Stales. The views presented by the Post
Master Gen. against the policy of granting
subsidies to ocean mail steamship lines on
established routes, and in lavor of con:
tinuing the present system, which limits
the compensation for ocean service to the
postage earnings, are recommended to the
careful consideration of Congress.
It appears, from the report of '' tba
Secretary of the Navy, tbat while, at the
commencement of the present year, tbere
were in commission 630 vessels of all
classes and descriptions, armed with
3,000 guns and manned by 51,000 men,'
the number of vessels at present in com
mission is 117, with 630 guns and 12,128
mon. By this prompt reduction of the
naval forces the expenses of the Govern
ment have been largely diminished, and
a number of vessels, purchased for naval
purposes from the merobant marine, have
been returned (o the peaceful pursuits of
commerce. Since tbe suppression ol
active hostilities our foreign squadrons
have been re-established, and consist of
vcbsoIs much more efficient than those
employed on similar eervice previous to
the rebellion. The suggestion for the
enlargement of the navy yards, and es
pecially for the establishment of one la
fresh water for iron-clad vessels, la de
serving of consideration, as is ' also the
recommendation for a different location
and more ample grounds for the Naval
' In the roport of the Secretary of War,
a general summary is given of the mili
tary oampaigns of 1864 and 1865, end
ing in the suppression of armed resist
ance to the national authority in the in
surgent States. The operations of the
general administrative bureaus of the
War Department daring the past year
are detailed, and an estimate made of the
appropriations that will be required for
military purposes . in the fiscal year com
mencing the 30th day of Jnne, 1866.
The national military force on the 1st of
May, 1865, numbered 1.000.616 men.
It ts proposed to rednce the military es
tablishment to a peace footing, compre
hending fifty thousand troops of all arms,
organized so' as to admit of an enlarge
ment by filling up the tanks to eiehtv-
two thousand six hnndred, if the circum
stances of the eountry should require an
augmentation of the army. The volun
teer force bas already been reduced by
the discharge from serviee of over eight
hundred thousand troops, and the De
partment is proceeding rapidly In the
work of further reduction. The war es
timates are reduced from 8516,240,131
to 833,814,461, which amount, in the
opinion of the Department, la adequate
for a peace establishment. The meas
ures of retrenchment io eaoh burean and
branch ot the service exhibit a diligent
economy worthy of commendation. Ref
erence ts also made in the report to the
necessity of providing for a Uniform mil
itia system, and to the propriety of
making suitable provision for wounded
and disabled omcers and soldiers. ..
The revenue system of the countrv is &
subject of vital interest to its honor and
prosperity, and should command the
earnest consideration of Congress. Tbe
Secretary of the Treasury will lay before
you a full and detailed report ol tbe re
ceipts and disbursements of the last fiscal
year, of the first qusrtor of the present
fiscal year, of the probable receipts and
expenditures for the other three quarters,
and the estimates for the year following
the 30th of June, 1866. .1. might con
tent myself with a reference to that re
port, in which you will find all the inform
ation required for your deliberations and
decision. But (he paramount importance
of the subject so presses itself on my own
mind tbat I cannot but lay before you my
views of tbe measures which are re
quired for the - good character, and, I
might almost say, for the existence of
this people. Tne lite of a republic lies
certainly in the energy, virtue and intel
ligence of its citizens ; but it is equally
true that a good revenue system ia the
life of an organized government. I meet
you at a time when the nation ' has
volnntarily burdened itself with debt' un
precedented in our annals, ' Vast as is its
amount, it fades away into nothing when
compared with the countless blessings thst
will be conferred upon, the eountry and
1 . l . : i .1..
upon van uy iu preservation ui wuo u
I Concluded on fourth page.

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