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MAY 13, 1834.]

Commutation Pension Bill.

[H. OF R.

should be paid to their heirs or legal representatives.ject of these acts of limitation, by the Congress which And yet, if a soldier or officer now in the army were to die, and the Government were in arrears to him, would not his representative or heirs have a legal claim upon the Government?

It is true, this pay of the officers of the Revolution, who served to the end of the war, has been barred by acts of limitation, and is not therefore a legal claim; and the Government now, in removing the bar of limitation, may, in its discretion, direct it to be paid either to legal representatives to pay debts, to heirs, or to devisees or legatees. I claim it for the heirs; and it is against every principle of law for debts to die with the person to whom they were due.

passed them, was to prevent the payment of these claims? Never! they would never have been passed if the Congress of those days had not contemplated the repeal of the acts of limitation, and the admission of the claims as soon as the Government should be relieved from its burden of public debt, and be enabled honorably to redeem the faith of the nation, pledged to its own soldiers in its own cause. Many of the officers, I repeat, did not present their claims when they would have been paid in that which amounted to nothing, and they have never been paid their half pay or commutation pay up to this time. Many of them, by the act of '85, which authorized the respective corps to elect the commutation pay in lieu of But, again, the gentleman contends that if we allow half pay for life, had been forced against their will and the principal to the heirs, yet we should refuse to allow consent to abide this election, and they never consented interest. There is every reason, in the case of these to it to the days of their deaths. And now the gentleman claims, to urge the allowance of interest. Was not the from New York [Mr. VANDERPOEL] still more absurdly commutation pay at the end of the war a part of the na- contends that, because some were paid, and paid in tional debt; and was it not in part funded? Has not the "comparatively worthless certificates," those who were Government been paying interest on the funded debt not then paid at all should not, therefore, now be paid from that time to this? Did not the certificates of debt in good money! This, I should think, sir, would be a draw interest? Had the Government the "wherewithal" strong, very strong ground for allowing these claims; and to pay its immense debt, or any item of it, then, without not only so, but for allowing those who were then paid in borrowing? Would interest have not been payable on nothing, to be now put upon a footing of equality, by payloans? And has payment been delayed by the "laches" ing them, or their heirs, something; by making up to of the claimants? The Government itself barred the them the difference between "comparatively worthless claims from '89 to '92, and from '94 up to this time. But certificates" and the actual amount promised for their on another principle, if Government does not now allow services. But this rule of equality should certainly operate the interest on the commutation pay, it ought, in the both ways. From 1828 up to this time, you have been name of justice, to give the claimants the benefit of the constantly passing special acts allowing these commutation original contract with the officers, which will ensure an claims; about twenty have passed this House this session. equivalent, or nearly so, in many cases, to the interest. Several have been allowed and paid heretofore. Now, if If we be not allowed the principal and interest of the the remaining claims are not paid, and precisely on the commutation pay, give us what was promised-the half same principles, where is the justice of Government and pay for life, in lieu of which the commutation pay was the equality of citizenship? given.

Mr. W. regretted that the bill, and the claims for But the arguments of the gentleman from New York which it provides, were not better understood in the [Mr. VANDERPOEL] are more preposterous and contradic- House. He begged of gentlemen who had not given it tory, and unjust, than those of the gentleman from Geor- their attention and study, and would have to vote on the gia, [Mr. GILMER.] He says these claims are barred by faith they reposed in others, to look to the committee lapse of time. Such is not the fact; for they were barred who had reported this bill, composed of some of the first in '87, and then in '94, so soon after the war, and ablest, most experienced, and vigilant members in that almost within the number of years for which commutation House. For an unanswerable defence of the bill, he repay was promised, by acts of limitation passed by Con- ferred to the very able argument delivered by the gentle. gress the debtor, against the officers the creditors. But man from Kentucky, [Mr. MARSHALL,] who reported it, the gentleman says, and I call the attention of the House and to the remarks of the other members of the committo the expression, that "the Government was continually tee. He reminded the House that his deceased colleague calling on the officers, by invitations in the form of limita- [Judge BOULDIN] was a member of the committee; and tions, to present their claims." Pretty invitations, in- though ever zealous and watchful of expenditures, and deed! The truth is, that Congress was engaged from '83 though he was bitterly hostile to the whole pension systo '85 in considering and discussing the manner in which tem, yet, ever ready to do justice, he was a friend to this these debts should be paid. During these two years, no bill. The committee was unanimous. Mr. W. said he claims could be settled, because the mode of settlement, hoped the authorities for would outweigh those against and the kind of payment, were not determined upon. In the two years following, from '85 to '87, the opportunity was afforded to such to be paid as chose to be paid in certificates which were worthless. I blame not the Congress. I mean to cast no reproach upon the great and good men of Congress in '87, when I say they were anxious to compel the "old soldiers" to come in and take the certificates which were then offered, in order to settle up the public debt, and then they passed the limitation of '87, which continued until '92.

the bill; and concluded by saying it would be death to the bill to recommit it, whilst all admitted that it provided for many claims which, in some form or other, ought to be satisfied.

Mr. VANDERPOEL said that, so long as he had the honor of representing a portion of the freemen of the State of New York on this floor, he should discharge what he believed to be his duty, fearlessly and independently, and that it was not in the power of animadversion, sarcasm, or menace, from whatever quarter they might In '92 they removed the bar until '94, but still the pay come, either to deter him from his duty, or enervate him was not what was promised; it was worthless; and many in the discharge of it. The gentleman from Virginia officers from design, and many, no doubt, from ignorance, [Mr. WISE] had told us that he was interested in the bill and the short time allowed, did not present their claims. before us, and would not, therefore, vote upon the pendFrom '94 until the present moment, it is true, the claim-ing question. This, said Mr. V., is all well enough. It ants have been "invited," by a continual bar of their accords with that delicacy and sense of propriety that claims, to present them for payment. From '83 to 1834 should always characterize every gentleman here and there have been but four years in fifty that these claims elsewhere. But, sir, it strikes me that the recollection have not been barred. Can it be supposed that the ob- of that interest which restrains the gentleman from vo

H. or R.]

Commutation Pension Bill.

[MAY 13, 1834.

ting should have inculcated a little more respect for the claims actually exist, to justify the very liberal, dangerviews and opinions, and a little more charity for the mo- ous, and unprecedented presumptions proposed to be tives of other gentlemen, who have seen fit to differ with established by the bill, the gentleman from Virginia has the gentleman from Virginia in relation to the merits of seen fit to denounce my positions as "preposterous!" the bill. It would have been well enough for the gentle- Sir, said Mr. V., this is not the first time that I have man to have recollected that self-interest is the Jupiter of seen gentlemen, when hard pressed, resort to epithet to the human heart; a very potent, if not an all-absorbing demolish the argument of their antagonists; and my exfeeling; that it warps the judgment of the wisest, and perience has long since taught me that it is generally reblurs the vision of the most sagacious of men; that it oft- sorted to for the want of more substantial materials. It times imparts a false and repulsive coloring to truth, and is the standing resource of those who feel the embarrassgives error and heresy a sound and seductive aspect; and ment inseparable from a scarcity of argument; and I will that, as a general rule, the judge who is wholly disinter-hazard the belief that the gentleman from Virginia would ested in the subject-matter upon which he is called to have done full as much towards advancing the bill he has adjudicate, is deemed more competent to attain correct here espoused, if he had attempted to refute the positions conclusions than he who views a subject through the de- of the gentleman from New York by a more dexterous ceptive medium of an interested imagination. Mr. V. use of the weapons of logic, and without the aid of the thought, for his part, that a timely recurrence to these argument of epithet. homely and familiar truths would on all occasions tend Another provision of this bill which irresistibly calls to repress the over-confidence, and correct the vehe- for its recommitment, is the provision allowing interest mence of those who spoke or acted under the impulse of to those who are to be admitted to its benefits. This interest. Whether the consideration of interest had in becomes a pretty important feature in the bill, when we this instance rendered the gentleman from Virginia recollect that, at this late day, the interest of seven years more deferential to the opinion of others, and less con- pay will be nearly, if not quite, quadruple the principal. fident of the correctness of his own, he (Mr. V.) would On what principle can the claim to interest be supported' not undertake to determine. Let the effort which the Does not the allowance of interest imply a continual un honorable gentleman has just made speak for itself on willingness, or non-readiness, on the part of Government, this point. to pay these claims? But, sir, is not such unreadiness or Mr. V. said he was in favor of recommitting the bill to unwillingness contradicted by the history of the Govern the Committee of the Whole on the state of the Union, to ment? So far from ever evincing an unwillingness to the end that those objectionable features, on the ground satisfy the obligations incurred by the resolves of the of which he had mainly opposed its passage on a former Revolutionary Congress, Congress, after the adoption of occasion, might be expunged. Here, in the House, the the federal constitution, from time to time invited these bill was incapable of amendment. Those who disap- applicants to come forward and present their claims, proved of some of its features could not obviate the ob- Acts of limitation have been passed, and were repeatedly jections which might possibly induce them to vote against extended before their expiration. These extensions it if those features were not removed. The presump-were, in effect, not only offers to pay these claims, but in tions which the bill recognised in favor of the claims the nature of invitations to come forward and present of those who might apply for the benefit of its pro- them. Do you propose, by the passage of the bill upo visions were wholly intolerable. They could not fail your table, to provide for the payment of debts? Then, to lead to immense frauds and peculations, were alto- sir, I contend that a tender or offer to pay them has gether unheard of in the annals of legislation, and were been made by the Government; and this, as between in wholly unknown among the fair and sound conclusions dividuals, always arrests the progress of interest. Do which, in contemplation of law, flowed from the lapse gentlemen wish to secure, in favor of those who prefer of time. The wisdom and experience of ages has sanc- these stale, uncertain, and outlawed claims, a more liberal tioned, if not sanctified, the rule that a presumption rule than would be applied to demands between individ of the non-existence of a claim results from the long uals that are recent and indisputable? In relation to one omission to present or assert it. But, sir, according to of my constituents, whose petition for what was his just the provisions of this bill, claims upon the Govern- due I presented at an early part of this session, I was told ment acquire new vigor and favor from the efflux of by the committee of this House to whom it was referred, time. What a temptation, nay, what a bounty, does that the Government never pays interest where there has this principle hold out to those who have counterfeit or been no fault, refusal, or omission on its part, or when doubtful claims, to postpone the presentation of them has not contributed to the causes that have prevented until every vestige of evidence to contradict or falsify earlier payment or presentation of the demand. I was s them is consumed by all-corroding time. Look, sir, at forcibly struck, sir, with the justice and propriety of the the effect of the principle in this very case. Those who rule, that I most readily submitted to it. applied for their commutation for their seven years' pay, When on a former occasion I had the honor of address when the evidence in favor of their claims was fresh and ing the House, said Mr. V., I stated that, if the bill upon green, were paid in certificates that were comparatively your table passed, some of the officers of the Virgin worthless; whereas, those who have lain upon their oars State line would be thrice paid for their revolutionary for more than half a century, until the ancestors them- services; that they would first participate in the formida selves who rendered the alleged services are gathered to ble amount you appropriated in 1832 for the payment their fathers, and until all remembrance of the services the Virginia claims, then avail themselves of the act of in support of the claims must have become obscure and 1828 granting the full pay of a captain for life, and then unsatisfactory, and until the Government has become partake of the benefits of the bill upon your table, which divested of all means to defend against them-they, sir, secures to the objects of it nothing short of princely far are to have lavished upon themselves, or their heirs, not tunes. I then succeeded in showing, sir, that the officers only the full amount of their commutation, in good hard Jackson money, but also more than fifty years' interest! I say again, what a munificent bounty is this to the tardy, who would not present their claims to commutation, when, peradventure, there was a host of living witnesses to contradict them! and yet, sir, because I have dared to intimate a doubt whether a sufficient number of these

of these Virginia regiments had been recognised as con tinental officers, both by your Secretary of State and your Secretary of the Treasury, in their construction of the act of 1828; and that these officers, thus already doubly paida would come within the provisions of this bill, because the only question with the Secretary of the Treasury would be, whether they belonged to the continental line or not

MAY 14, 1834.]

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Commutation Pension Bill--Public Deposites.

and that, after the view which not only the Secretary, but which Congress had taken of the nature of their service, by passing private acts for their relief, as was done in favor of the heirs of Vauters and others, the Secretary of the Treasury would now be estopped from controverting this point; and these officers would emphatically be the favored sons of fortune, if this bill should pass with all its singular provisions. Mr. V. said he dwelt upon this point with no intention to disparage that great and patriotic State which the gentleman [Mr. WISE] in part so honorably represented; but he felt it an imperative duty to repeat a fact which should have so important a bearing upon the question of rejecting or passing this bill; a fact which had not yet been, to the knowledge of him, (Mr. V.) contradicted by any gentleman who had yet spoken.

[H. of R.

attempt to influence him or any gentleman, by menace, on
any subject. Such would surely be a very impolitic mode
of electioneering for this or any bill. He hoped the
gentleman did not mean to impute to him such a course.
[Mr. VANDERPOEL signified that he did not.]

Sir, if my interest in this subject does not enable me to judge of it as clearly as some gentlemen, it justifies me, at all events, in repelling reproach cast upon the claimants, when I myself am a petitioner. The gentleman complains that I did not reply to his argument, and indulged in sarcasm for the want of better materials. The House, perhaps, can judge of that better than either of us. i did not rise, sir, to argue the bill, but merely to dispel prejudice, and to reply to some of the gentleman's "decent" expressions. I have said there are very few in this House, or out of it, who do understand this bill; I Mr. V. said it should be borne in mind that the bill wish members did understand its merits, for its own sake, made provision for the heirs and representatives of the and in order the better to comprehend the arguments and deceased, as well as for surviving officers. This consid-reply of the gentleman and myself. Some who have ateration should admonish us not to establish any rules by tempted to argue it even seem to understand very little, which the facility of these heirs to prove and establish either about the history of the claims or the principles of their claims shall be unreasonably extended. Confine the the laws providing for them. provisions of the bill to the surviving officers, who may I thought as much, sir, that the gentleman had “no pretend to be entitled to commutation, and the drain revolutionary blood in his veins to talk about," or not to which it would occasion upon your treasury would be talk about. I have, sir; and, I repeat, I am proud of it. comparatively light; but, sir, pass the bill in its present But I meant not to reproach him with this, or any thing, shape, and these heirs, pretending to be the descendants save that he is using his best endeavors to withhold comof sires who never received what their country promised pensation for revolutionary services. And I will say, sir, them, will be found scattered through the country as that if the gentleman has, as I have, any of the patriotic thickly as locusts. They, sir, can apply without incur-band surviving in his district, he may hereafter meet with ring the imputation of fraudulent motive, immaterial how a reproach at the polls, which I would not meet-no!— unfounded their claim may be; for they cannot be pre-not for ten thousand times ten thousand the amount of med to possess any personal knowledge as to the revo- the sum which will be appropriated by this bill! He lutionary services of their ancestor. They have, to be may see the old survivors of the battles of liberty, in the sure, heard that he was an officer of the Revolution; they last trembling hours of their existence, tottering on their may have heard him talk or dream about the commutation crutches, or brought on their beds to the polls, and the resolves of Congress; but whether he received his half heirs and descendants of revolutionary sires elbowing pay or not, they know not; they apply to the Executive through the crowd, earnest and anxious to record their departments, and find no evidence there to contradict the votes against a candidate ungrateful for their services, and claim they wish to prefer, because the devouring flames the rich fruits of them which he now enjoys! Such a have come to their aid, by consuming the public records; sight would wither me. I meant only to warm the genthey are encouraged by the success of others, prove tleman a little-he is so cold. merely that their ancestor served after 1780, and draw at once thousands from your treasury; whereas, had the ancestor survived, the application, probably, would never have been made, because his own oath would have been required; and this requisition would have been a sufficient bar to his success. I do not intend, by these remarks, to reflect upon any heirs of deceased officers, but merely to warn the House of consequences that may flow from the passage of the bill in its present form, and prevail upon it, if possible, to send it back to a committee,ginia regiments who, as Mr. VANDERPOEL apprehended, Where it may be purged of the dangerous features and would be allowed double pay under the bill." principles which it now imbodies.

Mr. MARSHALL (chairman of the committee who had reported the bill) responded to the objections which had been urged against it, and read a letter from the Register of the Treasury, going to show that interest had been allowed, as of course, in certain cases where claims for commutation had been established.

Mr. VANDERPOEL and Mr. WISE had one more encounter of a rather brisk character.

Mr. WARD explained, on the subject of certain Vir

Mr. MARSHALL spoke to the same point, showing that they would not be included.

Mr. BATES stated the opinion of the Department to the same effect.

Mr. McKINLEY moved an adjournment; but it was

The gentleman from Virginia [Mr. WISE] tells us that he is individually interested in the passage of this bill, and he gives us plainly to understand that he is a descendant of one of the veterans of the Revolution, and asks whether the gentleman from New York can boast of any revolu-negatived. Lonary blood coursing through his veins. Sir, said Mr. V., I will answer him in the language of a modest and nobtrusive Christian, not a vain and egotistical one, sir, who, when impertinently asked whether he had any religion, calmly responded, " None, sir, to talk about."

Mr. WISE said the remark of the gentleman that he (Mr. W.) had menaced" him, called for explanation. He denied that he had menaced the gentleman, but merely replied to an attack by him on the claimants of this Sill, one of whom he (Mr. W.) was. He said he hoped the gentleman (Mr. V.) was a man; if he was a man, he never would be deterred from the performance of his duty by the menace or the influence of any one; and he (Mr. W.) could assure him that he would be the last to VOL. X.--255

Mr. STEWART asked for the yeas and nays on the question of recommitment; but the House refused to order them.

The question was then put and carried: Ayes 88, noes 76. So the commutation pension bill was recommitted to a Committee of the Whole House on the state of the Union. The House then adjourned.

WEDNESDAY, MAY 14.
PUBLIC DEPOSITES.

The House proceeded to the consideration of the reso

H. OF R.]

Adjournment--Appropriation Bills--Indian Annuity Bill.

lution submitted by Mr. MARDIS, with the amendment proposed as a substitute by Mr. CORWIN.

Mr. GALBRAITH resumed, and addressed the House until the expiration of the hour allotted for morning business, in support of the measures of the Executive, and in reply to the arguments adduced in opposition thereto by the member from Rhode Island, [Mr. BURGES,] when he suspended his remarks.

ADJOURNMENT OF CONGRESS.

Mr. BOON rose and said that his unwillingness to prevent the member from Pennsylvania [Mr. GALBRAITH] from proceeding with his remarks induced him to refrain calling up, this morning, his resolution to fix the time of adjournment. He, however, would now give notice that

he should ask for its consideration to-morrow.

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After passing, without objection, through a number of items of the bill

Mr. LEWIS said he was instructed by the Committee on Indian Affairs to move an amendment, granting eight thousand dollars to defray the expenses of negotiating the treaty with the Western Pawnees; also, an amendment granting eleven thousand one hundred and sixty dollars, to be distributed among the Creek Indians who emigrated under Chilly McIntosh.

Mr. GRENNELL desired to have some explanation as to the necessity that existed for these amendments.

Mr. LEWIS replied, that the first amendment would explain itself. The other was introduced in order to fulfil the stipulations entered into by this Government with the Indians; a portion of the tribe who had emigrated in conformity to the treaty not having received the articles stipulated to be given to them.

Mr. FILLMORE inquired if this latter amendment would not with more propriety be inserted in the other

Indian bill?

Mr. LEWIS said he had no objection to withdrawing it for that purpose.

It was withdrawn accordingly, and the other was agreed to.

Mr. LEWIS then proposed an item granting ten thousand dollars, to be distributed to purchase provisions for the Creek tribe of Indians in Alabama, who are destitute of the means of subsistence.

Mr. L. said the destitute condition of the Indians made this necessary to be given, to enable them to procure the means of subsistence. It was the more incumbent on the Government to grant this, as it appeared the relations that had formerly subsisted between them and the Government were not sufficiently dissevered; at least, they were not known to be so by that class, the most improvident among them, who relied upon receiving their customary supplies.

Mr. GILMER opposed the appropriation, considering that such grants to the Indians would only tend to make them still more improvident, and encourage them in habits of idleness. He opposed it for another reason: the State of Alabama, he understood, had extended her jurisdiction over them; and if they were in the starving condition they were represented to be, then it was incumbent on that State, not "for the General Government," to provide for them.

Mr. LEWIS remarked that he made the proposition at the instance of the Secretary of War, from facts of distress which had been made known to him to exist. He would admit the obligation of the State of Alabama to

[MAY 14, 1834.

provide for these men, but it should be only when the Government would give up all interference with them, and not, by making treaties, and doing other acts, treat them differently from the other citizens of that State. After some further remarks from Mr. BATES, Mr. VINTON, and Mr. BURGES, condemnatory of the gen eral treatment of the Indians

Mr. VANCE said that he was in favor of the amendment, having himself to propose, under somewhat similar circumstances, an amendment to it, granting five thousand dollars for the relief of the Shawnees.

Mr. LEWIS replied to Mr. BORGES, who now advanced, he said, quite a new doctrine, that the Indians were under the jurisdiction of Alabama; he wished the Government would treat them either as citizens of that State or not and would not make them independent when a treaty was in question, and citizens as soon as they became pau. pers and were to be relieved. The Indians could net be both.

Mr. EVERETT dreaded the effect of the amendment.

He thought these Indians might safely be left to the care and humanity of the State of Alabama, which claimed the jurisdiction over them.

Some further explanations took place between Messrs. GILMER and LEWIS, when Mr. MARDIS replied to Mr. BURGES, and strenuously denied that any injury had resulted to the Indians from the recent policy of the Gor ernment towards them. The discussion was terminated by Mr. POLK, who proposed to include the case in the indian annuity bill. Whereupon,

Mr. LEWIS withdrew his amendment.

On motion of Mr. H. EVERETT, an item of one thousand dollars was added for a treaty with the Wyndotts.

Mr. LEWIS moved, pro forma, an item of five hundred thousand dollars, to enable the Government to extinguish Indian claims to land in Alabama. He named this sum st random, intending to bring up the subject in the House Negatived.

Mr. ASHLEY moved an amendment for a clerk in the office of the Superintendent of Indian Affairs at St. Louis, five hundred dollars. Agreed to.

Mr. POLK reduced one of the items of the bill two thousand dollars, being an amount formerly paid to a clerk and two interpreters.

The bill was then laid aside to be reported; and the committee proceeded to consider the.

INDIAN ANNUITY BILL. Several of the items of this bill were slightly increased, so as to provide for an additional blacksmith in some o the tribes.

These several amendments were zealously, but uner: cessfully, resisted by Mr. McKAY. In one or two instan ces, however, he cut off a blacksmith.

Some reductions were made, on motion of Mr. POLE, viz: from the Kaskaskias one thousand dollars; and the same amount from the joint annuity of the Kaskaskias and Peorias.

An item was added, on motion of Mr. HUBBARD, to carry into effect the fourth article of the treaty with the Appalachicolas, three thousand five hundred and ten dollars.

The item for the expenses of transportation of annu ties, salt, tobacco, tools, &c. was increased from twenty thousand to twenty-nine thousand five hundred dollars.

Mr. BATES made some inquiries respecting this item, which were answered by Mr. POLK and Mr. SEVIER.

The item for expenses of locating reservations and cer tifying contracts under the Creek treaty of 24th March, 1832, was augmented from eight thousand to fifteen thousand two hundred and twenty-three dollars.

Mr. WILLIAMS wanted to know the number and ex

MAY 14, 1834.]

Indian Annuity Bill.

[H. OF R.

tent of the surveys made, and have the expense of them Mr. WILLIAMS still insisted that a portion of the five compared with that of the ordinary surveys of the public hundred thousand dollars must remain unexpended. lands.

Mr. POLK explained, and said that the vouchers for the details were in the department.

The item of five thousand dollars, for a commissioner to value the improvements of the Brothertown Indians, was stricken out.

Two thousand dollars were appropriated for running the boundary line between the Sacs and Foxes.

The clauses for fees of counsel in certain suits, and for horses lost by the Choctaws, were stricken out.

Two thousand two hundred and one dollars were allowed for a surveyor.

Five thousand one hundred and thirty-six dollars for payment of claims for provisions and bounty money to the emigrating Creeks.

A long debate arose on the amendment moved by Mr. POLK, for removing five thousand Creek Indians west of the Mississippi, furnishing them with rifles, blankets, &c. and supporting them for one year, two hundred and sixty-nine thousand five hundred dollars; and another for removing certain Cherokees, and their subsistence, sixtyeight thousand three hundred and twenty-five dollars, (their removal costing twenty dollars a head, and their Bubsistence seven cents per ration.)

Mr. VINTON inquired whether these were Cherokees from Georgia or from Tennessee?

Mr. POLK replied, that they were almost all from Georgia.

Mr VINTON had no objection, so far as they were from Georgia, because, with respect to that State, the Government was under stipulations to remove the Indians as soon as practicable; but no such obligation existed in respect to Tennessee. All the Indian lands in Tennessee had been made a donation to that State, and the State ought to remove her own Indians.

Mr. POLK quoted a treaty to show that the same obligation bound the Government in respect to all the other States, where the Cherokees might be located.

Mr. VINTON'S objections were aggravated by this provision, and he moved an amendment so as to confine the appropriation only to Indians in Georgia and Alabama. Mr. WAYNE said this would prevent the emigration of the Cherokees altogether; as those in Georgia and Alabama would not go unless the residue of the tribe in Tennessee and North Carolina went with them.

Mr. WILLIAMS thought the objection too late, after the treaty had been ratified. But he wanted to know why these expenses were not to be paid out of the five hundred thousand dollars granted by the famous "Indian bill" of 1830?

Mr. POLK assured him that it was not so; and, even if it were so, the money must have long since gone back to the surplus fund. As to any questions between Tennessee and the Government, they had nothing to do with the matter in hand.

Mr. VINTON'S amendment was thereupon negatived, and that proposed by Mr. POLK agreed to.

Mr. POLK now moved the appropriation of one hundred and twelve thousand eight hundred and fifty-three dollars, which had been paid into the treasury under the act of 1831, being the proceeds of the sale of certain lands belonging to the Seneca tribe of Indians, in the State of New York, and from which he proposed that the annuity of six thousand dollars promised to those Indians should be paid, in support of which motion he read a communication from the Department of War, and called for the reading of the law of 1831.

Mr. ADAMS strenuously opposed the amendment, contending that this was money which the Government had no right to touch, inasmuch as it had been vested in the President, in trust for the Seneca tribe. It was their property, and ought to be kept sacred as such. Mr. A. gave a history of the investment of the money, by his own order, when he was President, and denied the power of Congress to pay the Seneca annuity from this fund.

Mr. POLK explained, and stated that the money was in the treasury to the credit of the Seneca tribe. It now lay dead, and the purpose of his amendment was not to deprive those Indians of their funds, because it would always remain safe to them, but only to give this money the same activity with other moneys in the treasury.

Mr. ADAMS responded, and warmly insisted on his former objection; but the question being put, the amendment was agreed to.

Mr. HAWES now moved an amendment, proposing that the annuities, paid under treaties with the Indians, should be paid to the tribes, or their representatives, and not to individual Indians. His object was to prevent the money from passing into the hands of the whites, and to secure to the Indians the benefits intended for them.

Mr. H. EVERETT suggested that the Committee on Indian Affairs had prepared a bill, which would shortly be reported, providing that these moneys should be paid to the Indian chiefs, and that Mr. Hawes had better so modify his amendment.

[Mr. HAWES consenting, the amendment was modified accordingly; and a debate of considerable length ensued, wherein it was contended on one side, that, under the present mode of paying the annuities to individual Indians, the tribes were all assembled under a notice on Mr. POLK replied, that the appropriation to which the a given day to receive their quota; and no sooner was gentleman [Mr. WILLIAMS] referred had all been expend- that day known than the sellers of rum, for a hundred ed. He believed the gentleman would find on the files miles round, congregated on the spot, and the result of the House a report stating the manner in which it had generally was, that the Indians were stripped of every been applied. He was aware that there were a few Che- penny they received; and not only so, but were somerokees, both in North Carolina and Tennessee; but their times obliged to sell their rifle and blanket, and go home land, in either State, was not larger than to constitute a naked. The agents, too, who paid the money, were respectable county, and what there was of it lay chiefly in a held to no responsibility. The Indians could give no mountainous region. The treaty, however, which the receipts, and the account was usually kept on a notched Government had made with the Cherokee nation, and in stick. Consequence of which they had ceded their land, bound the Government to remove all who were willing to emigrate, let them reside where they might. Some explanation here took place between Messrs. VINTON and POLK as to a proviso in the bill.

Mr. BATES was much opposed to removing Indians from Tennessee at the expense of the General Government, when the lands they left would go, not to the United States, but to the State of Tennessee. No treaty with the Cherokees would settle that question, as between Tennessee and the General Government.

On the other hand, it was urged that, if the money should be paid to the chiefs, mingoes, or headmen, they would divide it among themselves, and leave the common Indians without a single penny. In confirmation of this statement, Mr. ASHLEY referred to a case in which money paid for annuities had, by order of the chiefs receiving it, been deposited in the Bank of St. Louis, in the very boxes, still unopened, in which it had been received from the agents of the United States. It was in consequence of this difficulty that the present mode had been adopted.]

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