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same, in the


of the Senate of the United States, to Mr. Alexander Vattemare, of Paris, to be distributed by him in France, according to his system of national exchanges of books.

Friday, March 2, 1849.

Resolved, That the secretary be directed to furnish each member of the present Senate, who has not already received them, copy of the Constitution and other books ordered to be furnished to the Senators by the resolutions of February 18th, 1847, and to the Senators from Towa, and Wisconsin, the same number of the Constitution as have been already given to other members of the Senate.

Monday, September 23, 1850.

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* Resolved, That the secretary be directed to procure from the proprietor, for the use of the Senate, ten thousand copies of Hickey's edition of the Constitution, with an alphabetical lysis, Washington's inaugural and farewell addresses, and other important statistical matter illustrative of the genius of the American government and the developement of its principles Provided, That they be furnished at the same price as those ast procured for the use of the Senate.

Thursday, January 22, 1852.

Resolved, That each of the new members of the Senate be supplied with the same number and description of books as were furnished to each of the members of the Senate of the last Congress.

*N. B.-A resolution similar to this was passed by the Senate the 5th January, 1853,


THE Constitution, as the fireside companion of the American citizen, preserves in full freshness and vigor the recollection of the patriotic virtues and persevering courage of those gallant spirits of the Revolution who achieved the national independence, and the intelligence and fidelity of those fathers of the republic who secured, by this noble charter, the fruits and the blessings of independence. The judgment of the Senate of the United States has declared the importance of familiarizing American citizens, more extensively, with this fundamental law of their country, and has approved its association with the examples of republican virtue and the paternal advice of the "Father of his country," joined to other kindred matter, constituting the body of this work. To this honorable body is due the credit of having provided for the first general promulgation of the Constitution, the continued dissemination of whose wise injunctions and conservative principles among the people, can alone preserve their fraternal union and the precious inheritance of freedom.

That branch of the government which is clothed by the Constitution with legislative, executive and judicial powers, and thus invested with three separate authorities to preserve, protect, and defend this venerated instrument, has been pleased to take the initiative in a measure calculated so powerfully to support the Constitution, as that of giving it, in its simplicity and purity, to the people, who possess, themselves, the sovereign power to judge of the manner in which it may be executed, to rebuke its infraction, and to defend its integrity, and who therefore require every legitimate

aid to enable them to perform this vitally important duty in justice, truth, and good faith, for "The Constitution in its words is plain and intelligible, and it is meant for the homebred, unsophisticated understandings of our fellow-citizens." "It is addressed to the common sense of the people."

Several distinguished authorities and individuals having, in the plenitude of their liberality, honored the author and compiler with their sentiments on the subject-matter of the work, he claims the indulgence of the friends of the Constitution in giving them place in this edition, believing, that a salutary effect may be produced by the sanction of their special approbation, and the expression of their several views of the importance of an extended dissemination of that instrument. These may impress, in terms more unexceptionable, the obligation incumbent on every intelligent citizen to make himself acquainted with its provisions, restrictions, and limitations, and of imparting, so far as the ability may extend, a knowledge of this paramount law of our country to the minds of the rising generation.

The length of time required in the ordinary course of business, for obtaining a practical knowledge of the operations of government, by persons entering into public life, and their embarrassments for the want of a convenient mode of reference to the various sources of information, have suggested the utility of preparing, as a part of this work, and as germain to its design, a means of collect ing and rendering available to the public interest the experience and information acquired in this respect, in the progress of time, by attention to the business of legislation in the public service. The five new chapters in this edition may therefore be considered an essay, to be improved and extended hereafter, with a view, not only to add to the intrinsic matter proper to be read and studied by the great body of American citizens, but to render it peculiarly a vade mecum to the statesman and legislator, the ministering to whose individual convenience must, necessarily, result in facilitating the performance of arduous public duty, and in promoting, in no inconsiderable degree, the public interests.



My Dear Sir,


Washington, 18 Feb. 1847.


The volume on "The Constitution of the United States," you were hind enough to send me, I have carefully mined, and must now beg you to accept my warm thanks for the compliment of its dedication* and for the admirable character of its contents. It is, without exception, the best designed, fullest, neatest, and most accurate manual and guide in relation to the great instrument of which it exclusively treats, that I have




It deserves, and I hope it will receive, universal cir

The Constitution is an object to which no American mind can be too attentive, and no American heart too devoted. Or parts, provisions, or phrases, it is still and always will be pos. sible for ingenuity to raise constructive doubts: but, on the whole, as the organic chart chart of a limited confederated government, a practical trial of nearly sixty years would seem to place its wis. dom and efficiency beyond dispute or rivalry. And, although it is not unusual to hear it said, at moments of heat and disap. pointment, that, in the enactment or administration our federal laws, the obligations of the Constitution are disregarded, an ob servation and experience of more than thirty years convince mo of the reverse; and I satisfied that its hold the con cience and the opinion of the country at large is constantly


*The first and second editions.


strengthening. This is, indeed, the natural result of its perfect fitness to produce the purposes for which it was designed—union, justice, tranquillity, defence, welfare, and liberty! — and proves how well its practical operations harmonize with the business, sentiments, relations, and progress of the American people. Pestlers and innovating as we are in most things, we have not invaded, and I do not think we shall invade for centuries to come, the sacred stability of the Constitution.

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Such a fundamental and paramount law, in the picture of its origin and in the purity of its text, should be placed within the reach of every freeman. It should be found wherever there capacity to read: not alone in legislative halls, judicial councils, libraries, and colleges, but also in the cabins and steerages of our mariners, at every common-school, log-hut, factory, or fireside. It should form the rudimental basis of American thought, by being made a perpetually recurring object of memory. Your book enters upon the attainment of these promisingly than any of whose existence I am aware. It's "Analysis" is singularly interesting and useful; while its

aims more

tabular statements and historical records constitute most valuable

examples of compression and precision. The Senate of the United States, forcibly struck by its merits, its merits, gave their cordial sanction to its extensive dissemination; and, indeed, it would be hard, if not impossible, to devise a better mode of enlightening and purifying public opinion as to the necessary powers, duties, and responsibilities of all the functionaries of the General Go. vernment, the limits of their agency, and the conciliatory spiriš of the vast system to which they belong.

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Wm. Hickey, Esq.

dear Sir, very truly,
Afour friend and servant,
G. M. Dallas.

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