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man from Illinois has put precisely the contrary construction on this resolution from what was intended by the committee, and from what it means. It is a measure of protection to inventors and to the people of the country. If he had considered a moment what the state of our law regarding the granting of patents is, I do not think he would have made the remarks he has. Any one who visits the Exposition of 1867, and sees exhibited machines for the first time, may prepare drawings and make some modification to apply for a patent to this country. The Exposition will not preclude him from obtaining a patent. Its publication in some foreign work will preclude him, and nothing else. Hence the office has twice before met with trouble on similar occasions, and asks to have a measure of prevention in this third case.
The gentleman from Massachusetts [Mr. BOUTWELL] will understand how this may be. The information he has spoken of as obtained through publications may be long after the machinery has been done. We get the papers from the London office for a small sum. They supply intelligence from there as fast as the steamers can bring it here; but in France and Belgium information is not supplied as rapidly. It requires time to get copies of these patents. To get the volumes at our Patent Office sometimes requires three years.
Now, this Exposition takes place in Paris. Probably machines will be exhibited the first time and patents will be applied for near or about the time. Hundreds of people will visit the Exposition for the purpose of seeing what is new. Persons who have invented articles of a similar kind will get from this exhibition ideas of improvement on their own machines, or will take their ideas bodily from the foreign machines and take out patents in this country which cannot be invalidated by the exhibition of the articles there. It is not only for the purpose of protecting the office against swindling inventors, but to protect the people of this country against swindling patents, and against the claims which may grow out of them.
Mr. BOUTWELL. I ask whether the Exposition is not in its very nature calculated to guard the Patent Office here from frauds such as the gentleman from Rhode Island suggests. The articles exhibited are likely to be published in the journals of France and Great Britain simultaneously with the Exhibition.
Mr. JENCKES. The moment any article is described in any journal in any country where the article is produced a patent obtained in this country from that fact is invalidated, as the gentleman knows. Therefore the security we have from the Exhibition is great. If the descriptions were to be published simultaneously there would be no need of this, I agree. It is from the fact that they are not published simultaneously that this is needed. The official records of the Exhibitions in England and France were not published until two years after they had taken place.
Mr. BOUTWELL. I agree that the official report of the proceedings of the Exhibition and description of the articles exhibited would not be published for a considerable length of time; but the gentleman from Rhode Island knows very well that the publication in newspapers invalidates the patent in this country:
Mr. JENCKES. There is no provision that such provision shall be made.
Mr. BOUTWELL. They are certain to be made.
Mr. JENCKES. The gentleman must see this must be done at the opening of the Exposition, when these applications will be made here unless we take this measure to prevent them.
Mr. CHANLER demanded the previous question.
The previous question was seconded and the main question ordered.
Mr. STEVENS moved that the joint resolution be laid upon the table.
The motion was agreed to.
Mr. LAWRENCE, of Ohio, moved to recon
Mr. HUBBARD, of Connecticut. I can state in a few words all the facts that are material in
this case. The improvement in cotton presses for the shipping of cotton, invented by this man, is one of great public utility, as was shown by all the testimony before the committee; and such is the opinion of the Commissioner of Patents. These presses are only available to any important extent in the cotton-growing States.
The invention was patented on the 16th of January, 1845. Just before the time of its expiration, namely, in January, 1859, the petitioner applied to the then Commissioner of Patents, Hon. Joseph Holt, for a renewal. He obtained a renewal for seven years. It appears that during the first fourteen years he perfected the improvement, and constructed and sold divers presses at the South, from which he realized a profit of $23,417 22, which sum the Commissioner deemed to be a very inadequate compensation in view of the great public utility of the invention. The Commissioner, in his report, says that it has saved to the country millions of dollars. The committee regard it as an invention of the greatest importance, and although the inventor during the whole fourteen years has realized, as appeared by the account submitted of expenditures and receipts, some twenty-three thousand dollars, the committee believe that that was an entirely inadequate compensation for the great service which he had rendered to the country.
Upon the renewal of the patent by the Commissioner of Patents in January, 1859, the petitioner went to the South and obtained divers orders for presses; returned, gathered up material at great expense for the construction of machines, employed men and went to work diligently in their construction, the orders having been obtained a year in advance and the machines to be sold on credit. But before he could perfect his machines and get them into market to any considerable extent the southern rebellion came on, which prostrated all his efforts and ruined his business at once, by means of which he lost a vast amount in material and in wages which he had to pay to his employés. He also lost a great deal in the way of debts that were due to him from the cotton-growing States. His losses, in fact, were so great that the $23,000 that had been realized by him was not only absorbed, but he was ruined in his estate and became a bankrupt, as I was informed. His whole estate, in point of fact, was swept away. It costs a very considerable sum to make one of these machines.
Now, he came to Congress with a petition asking that the seven years, which were rendered unavailable to him in consequence of the rebellion, and which resulted in his utter ruin, shall be given to him over again, as if no renewal had been granted. The committee think that it is an equitable claim. In fact, we never heard a more equitable claim. Surely none has ever been presented to the committee which seemed to make so strong an appeal to our sense of right and justice. But the committee do not ask that a bill be passed directing the Commissioner of Patents to grant this renewal. We have adopted a rule on this subject by which we are bound and restricted,
and we only report a bill which authorizes Mr. Tyler, the petitioner, to submit his case to the Commissioner just as if his patent had not been renewed for seven years, during the time of the rebellion; to submit all the facts and circumstances of it; to bring his witnesses, and if he can convince the Commissioner of Patents that in equity and in law he is entitled to a renewal, then he is to have it.
This is all that pertains to the case so far as I know. Unless some gentleman desires to be heard upon it, I will move the previous question.
Mr. UPSON. The reason, as I understand it, why it is urged that the patent shall be renewed is on account of the war. I have yet to learn that we are to guaranty to all individuals payment for damages sustained on account of the war.
This patent has now been running fourteen years. I understand the gentleman to say that the patentee has made $23,000, but the committee think that is not enough, and that, therefore, we must extend the patent in order to enable him to make some more money, for the reason that the war prevented him from making as much as he otherwise would have
We are now, by a bill pending before the House, proposing to tax cotton five or six cents per pound, and in addition to that, it is now proposed to levy this additional tax for the machinery to be used in pressing it. It seems to me that the same reason would justify the extension of every patent which was renewed before the war broke out. For one, I am opposed to this measure.
Mr. WASHBURNE, of Illinois. I may say that generally anything that is reported by my distinguished friend from Connecticut [Mr. HUBBARD] is commended to my consideration, for I know how careful he is and how right he is generally on all matters which come before the House for consideration; but I must confess that I am somewhat astonished to see him "switch off" on this patent cotton-gin affair.
Now, I have read the report, and if the House have listened to it I think they will agree with me that there is no occasion for us to depart from the principle the House has adhered to in the last two Congresses without a single exception, when they have resolutely refused, even under the greatest pressure, to extend patents.
Now, sir, in the first instance, this man got a patent for this machine for seven years, then he got his patent renewed for seven years more. He has had his patent for fourteen years, and his petition shows that he has received between twenty-three and twenty-four thousand dollars. And now, after showing that fact, he comes here and asks us to do what? Notwithstanding that he has had this patent for fourteen years, he asks us to remit the question back to the Patent Office as an original case, and permit them to grant him another patent.
I think the reasons which he alleges are utterly insufficient to justify us in granting what he wishes; and, as was well said by the gentleman from Michigan, [Mr. UrSON,] the point on which it is put would apply to all of these cases. This man claims that during the war he could not use his patent as he would have done if there had been no rebellion; and hence he comes here and asks us to reimburse him for that loss. On the same principle every man who had a patent renewed before the war can come here and ask a renewal of his patent.
Now, Congress has for the last two or three years, as I have stated guarded, perhaps more vigilantly than anything else, this matter of allowing parties who have patents to have them renewed. This is not a case in which the party shows that he has any claim upon us to depart from the principle upon which we have heretofore acted. I hope, therefore, that the House will not pass this bill.
Mr. DAWES. It is true, as the papers in the case set forth, that this man has received. in fourteen years the gross sum of $23,000 from this patent. I think it hardly follows from that
statement that there has been any undue profit made out of the public from the patent.
Mr. HARDING, of Illinois. Net profits. Mr. DAWES. Whether it be net profits or gross receipts, to determine whether it is an inordinate sum or not, would depend upon the character and value of the invention, and the field in which the invention is to be applied. Now, this invention has direct application to the profitable cultivation of cotton; it is of no further use. It is a matter of history that the invention of the cotton-gin, which has made the whole southern country of any value whatever as a cotton-raising country, was of no profit at all to the original inventor, and he died a bankrupt, although he enriched the whole world with his invention.
Now, here is an invention in aid of the same object. And the net profits which the inventor has received during the fourteen years of the invention was only $23,000. The invention had application solely to the cultivation of cotton in the rebellious States; and during the last four years, those which were to be under ordinary circumstances the most valuable years of his invention, all profits have been lost to him from no fault of his. He does not ask for a new patent, but merely that the Commissioner of Patents shall be authorized to examine into the whole case, to hear the whole evidence, and to decide, under the rules and precedents which have governed the Patent Office, in the renewal of patents in time past, whether there is any fair and equitable reason for the longer existence of this patent. That is the whole extent of this bill.
Mr. WASHBURNE, of Illinois. If the gentleman will pardon me, I will ask him if he can deny that under this bill the Comissioner of Patents must necessarily issue this patent.
Mr. DAWES. I do not understand the bill to have been drawn for any such purpose. I would not sanction a bill that would require the Commissioner of Patents to issue the patent in question. If this bill is drawn in that way, I will not support it; but I do not understand it to have been drawn for any such end.
Mr. WASHBURNE, of Illinois. It is certain that the party understands that he will get a renewal of his patent if this bill is passed.
Mr. DAWES. I understand the gentleman from Connecticut [Mr. HUBBARD] to assent to what I say, that it was not the intention to draw the bill in the form indicated by the gentleman from Illinois, [Mr. WASHBURNE,] and if he has inadvertently so drawn it, I am quite sure he will see that it is modified. I think the party has great confidence that if the Commissioner of Patents is authorized to renew But that this patent he will obtain a renewal. confidence rests upon his belief in his ability to show to the Commissioner of Patents, what he is able to show to this House if this House were in a situation to hear patiently and fully what the Commissioner of Patents would hear, the justice of his case. If I understand the bill aright, the only authority given to the Commissioner of Patents is to hear and determine this case. I would ask the gentleman from Connecticut [Mr. HUBBARD] if that is the true construction of the bill.
Mr. HUBBARD, of Connecticut. Certainly. Mr. WASHBURNE, of Illinois. The bill will speak for itself. It says:
And the said Commissioner shall examine the said application and decide upon the same upon the same evidence and in the same manner as in other cases where extensions of patents are applied for under existing laws.
Now, by this clause of the bill, as this patent has been once issued, the Commissioner of Patents can do nothing else but issue the patent.
Mr. DAWES. I think that the gentleman from Illinois [Mr. WASHBURNE] is mistaken
extend the patent now just the same as he would have done, and only in that way, if the application had been made before the expiration of the patent. That is, if the patentee makes out his case and shows that he has failed to receive sufficient remuneration in consequence of circumstances over which he had no control, and for which he was in no way responsible, and that there has been no neglect on his part, then he will be entitled to the reissue of his patent.
It is because this relates to a matter that at this time is peculiarly interesting, a matter intimately connected with what we are all desir ous of promoting, that is, the enlarged culture of cotton and the profitable culture of cotton, that I think every invention which will contribute to that end should be encouraged; and every genius that has any ability to produce any new method and bring it properly into market should be encouraged and remunerated.
Mr. WASHBURNE, of Illinois. Does not the gentleman understand that this man has already enjoyed a patent for fourteen years, and that the public is now entitled to the use of the invention without paying any further bounty?
Mr. DAWES. I certainly do not so understand.
Mr. WASHBURNE, of Illinois. That is the fact. Yet one might suppose from the gentleman's remarks that this is an invention which we are bound to encourage, and that the public could not get the advantage of it without the passage of this bill.
Mr. DAWES. The gentleman certainly does not mean to say that we are bound to steal a man's invention.
Mr. WASHBURNE, of Illinois. No, sir; but when a man has enjoyed the advantage of a patent for fourteen years, and has made out of it $23,400, I do not believe that we are called upon to legislate more money into his pocket.
Mr. DAWES. I think that depends upon circumstances, the examination of which I am for one willing to remit to the Commissioner of Patents.
Mr. WASHBURNE, of Illinois. I am not. Mr. HUBBARD, of Connecticut. I yield a portion of my time to the gentleman from Illinois, [Mr. BROMWELL,] my colleague on the committee.
Mr. BROMWELL. There is one fact about this case which is perhaps not understood. To make one of these machines is a greater undertaking than to build an ordinary steam mill. Now, when a man makes an invention the manufacture of which costs only a trifling sum, he can very easily get his remuneration in fourteen years. But when an invention requires a vast outlay to manufacture it and to bring it into use, no man can expect, except under very extraordinary circumstances, to realize anything like a fair remuneration in fourteen years. The history of inventions shows that the inventors of those larger and costlier machines or combinations of machinery have died poor, in consequence of their struggles to perfect their inventions against
Now, it was shown before the committee that this inventor had struggled against adverse circumstances during the fourteen years of his patent, and that he had just got his business in a somewhat promising way when he obtained his extension; that the $23,000 which he received from the invention bears a very small proportion to his outlay, trouble, and suspense in his efforts to bring the invention into use. Just as he had secured the extension the rebellion broke out, depriving him in a great measure of the advantages of the extension. think this bill should be passed. It provides for no appropriation.
Mr. HUBBARD, of Connecticut. I have only a few minutes left, and I must resume the floor. I have only time to say that the bill simply proposes to submit the question of a renewal to the Commissioner of Patents, who is required to examine the whole case by wit
nesses, just as if the matter had not been heard in this House at all.
Mr. DRIGGS. Let me ask the gentleman whether $23,000 is all that this man received from his invention during fourteen years.
Mr. HUBBARD, of Connecticut. He received that amount within the fourteen years; but it was all absorbed afterward, as well as his whole estate, by losses in the cotton States. I now call the previous question.
Mr. WASHBURNE, of Illinois. I move that the bill be laid on the table.
On the motion there were-ayes 43, noes 49. Mr. WASHBURNE, of Illinois, called for the yeas and nays.
The yeas and nays were ordered.
The question was taken; and it was decided in the affirmative-yeas 68, nays 57, not voting 58; as follows:
YEAS-Messrs. Ancona, James M. Ashley, Baker, Beaman, Benjamin, Bergen, Bidwell, Bingham, Boyer, Brandegee, Broomall, Buckland, Chanler, Reader W. Clarke, Cobb, Cullom, Dawson, Defrees, Delano, Deming, Denison, Farquhar, Finck, Glossbrenner, Grider, Aaron Harding, Abner C. Harding, Harris, Henderson, James R. Hubbell, James M. Humphrey, Julian, William Lawrence, Le Blond, Longyear, Marshall, Marvin, McCullough, McKee, Moulton, Niblack, Noell, Orth, Paine, Samuel J. Randall, Rollins, Ross, Rousseau, Sawyer, Scofield, Shanklin, Shellabarger, Sitgreaves, Stilwell, Taylor, Thornton, Trowbridge, Upson, Robert T. Van Horn, Ward, Elihu B. Washburne, Henry D. Washburn, Welker, Williams, Stephen F. Wilson, Windom, Winfield, and Wright-68.
NAYS-Messrs. Alley, Allison, Ames, Anderson, Baxter, Blaine, Blow, Boutwell, Bromwell, Bundy, Coffroth, Conkling, Darling, Dawes, Dodge, Donnelly, Driggs, Eliot, Ferry, Garfield, Grinnell, Griswold, Higby, Hotchkiss, Asahel W. Hubbard, Chester D. Hubbard, John H. Hubbard. James Humphrey, Jenckes, Kasson, Kelley, Kelso, Kuykendall, Laflin, Lynch, MeRuer, Miller, Moorhead, Myers, Newell, O'Neill, Patterson, Perham, Pike, Plants, Raymond, Alexander II. Rice, John H. Rice, Schenck, Smith, Spalding, Strouse, Francis Thomas, Van Aernam, Warner, William B. Washburn, and James F. Wilson-57.
NOT VOTING-Messrs. Delos R. Ashley, Baldwin, Banks, Barker, Sidney Clarke, Cook, Culver, Davis, Dixon, Dumont, Eckley, Eggleston, Eldridge, Farasworth, Goodyear, Hale, Hart, Hayes, Hill, Hogan, Holmes, Hooper, Demas Hubbard, Edwin N. Hubbell, Hulburd. Ingersoll, Johnson, Jones, Kerr, Ketcham, Latham, George V. Lawrence, Loan, Marston, McClurg, McIndoe, Mercur, Morrill, Morris, Nicholson, Phelps, Pomeroy, Price, Radford, William H. Randall, Ritter, Rogers, Sloan, Starr, Stevens, Taber, Thayer, John L. Thomas, Trimble, Burt Van Horn, Wentworth, Whaley, and Woodbridge-58. So the bill was laid on the table.
Mr. WASHBURNE, of Illinois, moved to reconsider the vote by which the bill was laid upon the table; and also moved that the motion to reconsider be laid upon the table. The latter motion was agreed to.
Mr. WASHBURNE, of Illinois, from the joint committee on reconstruction, submitted testimony which had been taken before that committee in reference to Texas, Louisiana, and Florida; which was ordered to be printed and laid upon the table.
Mr. WASHBURNE, of Illinois, moved that the same number of extra copies be printed as had been ordered of previous testimony in
reference to other States.
The motion, under the law, was referred to the Committee on Printing.
Mr. BIDWELL, by unanimous consent, moved that the Committee on Agriculture be discharged from the further consideration of House bill No. 498, to amend section two of an act entitled "An act donating public lands provide colleges for the benefit of agriculture to the several States and Territories which may and the mechanic arts," and that the same be referred to the Committee on Public Lands. The motion was agreed to.
FREEDMEN'S BUREAU APPROPRIATION. Mr. WRIGHT. Mr. Speaker, I was absent from the House yesterday on account of sickness, and I wish to say if I had been present I would have voted against House bill No. 545, making appropriations for the uses of the Bu reau of Refugees, Freedmen, and Abandoned Lands for the fiscal year commencing January 1, 1866, appropriating as it does $11,000,000.
REORGANIZATION OF THE ARMY. The House resumed the consideration of the bill (H. R. No. 361) entitled "An act to reorganize and establish the Army of the United States," the pending section being the following:
SEC. 23. And be it further enacted, That the pay department of the Army shall hereafter consist of one paymaster general, with the rank, pay, and emoluments of a brigadier general; two assistant paymaster generals, with the rank, pay, and emoluments of colonels of cavalry; two assistant paymaster generals, with the rank, pay, and emoluments of lieutenant colonels of cavalry; and forty paymasters, with the rank, pay, and emoluments of majors of cavalry; and the original vacancies in the grade of major shall be filled by selections from those persons who have served faithfully as paymasters or additional paymasters in the Army of the United States in the late war; and hereafter no graduate of the United States Military Academy, being at the time in the Army of the United States, or having been at any time for three years next preceding, shall be eligible to appointment as an officer in the pay department; but this provision shall not extend to graduates of West Point now in the pay department.
The pending amendment was moved by Mr. SCHENCK, to strike out in line seven the word "forty," and insert "fifty" in lieu thereof; on which the yeas and nays had been ordered.
Mr. SCHENCK. Mr. Speaker, I do not propose to detain the House except to recall what took place when the amendment was up before, and which may have since been forgotten. In the seventh line of the twenty-third section provision is made for forty paymasters with the rank of major. The number insisted on by the Paymaster General, in an able communication read to the House, is sixty. In most of these bureaus and departments, the gentlemen who are at the head of them wish to have the greatest number of assistants, but can get along with a less number if it be found essential the number should be limited. The committee, on reconsidering the whole matter, agreed to make a compromise between the views of the Paymaster General and their own, and accordingly I moved the pending amendment to strike out "forty" and insert "fifty."
The question was taken; and it was decided in the negative-yeas 56, nays 65, not voting 62; as follows:
YEAS-Messrs. Alley, Anderson, Baldwin, Baxter, Bidwell, Blaine, Blow, Cobb, Darling, Dawes, Deming, Dodge, Donnelly, Driggs, Eliot, Farquhar, Ferry, Garfield, Abner C. Harding, Henderson, Holmes, Hotchkiss, Asahel W. Hubbard, John H. Hubbard, James Humphrey, Ingersoll, Julian, Kasson, Kelley, Kelso, Longyear, Lynch, Marvin, McRuer, Miller, Moorhead. Morrill, Morris, Myers, Newell, O'Neill, Paine, Perham, Pike, Plants, Raymond, John H. Rice, Sawyer, Schenck, Smith, Spalding, Stilwell, Burt Van Horn, Elihu B. Washburne, Henry D. Washburn, and William B. Washburn-56.
NAYS-Messrs. Allison, Ames, Ancona, Baker, Beaman, Benjamin, Bergen, Boutwell, Boyer, Brandegee, Broomall, Buckland, Chanler. Reader W. Clarke, Coffroth,Conkling,Cullom. Dawson, Defrees, Delano, Denison, Eldridge, Finck, Grider, Aaron Harding, Harris, Hart, Chester D. Hubbard, James R. Hubbell, James M.Humphrey, Jenckes, Kuykendall, Laflin, Latham, George V. Lawrence, William Lawrence, Le Blond, Loan, Marshall, McClurg, McCullough, McKee, Moulton, Niblack, Noell, Orth, Patterson, Samuel J. Randall, William H. Randall, Rollins, Ross, Scofield, Sitgreaves, Strouse, Taylor, Thornton. Trowbridge, Upson, Van Aernam, Ward, Welker, Williams, James F. Wilson, Stephen F. Wilson, and Wright-65.
NOT VOTING-Messrs. Delos R. Ashley, James M. Ashley, Banks, Barker, Bingham, Bromwell, Bundy, Sidney Clarke, Cook, Culver, Davis, Dixon, Dumont, Eckley, Eggleston, Farnsworth, Glossbrenner, Goodyear, Grinnell, Griswold, Hale, Hayes, Higby, Hill, Hogan, Hooper, Demas Hubbard, Edwin N. Hubbell, Hulburd, Johnson, Jones, Kerr, Ketcham, Marston, McIndoe, Mereur. Nicholson, Phelps, Pomeroy, Price, Radford, Alexander H. Rice, Ritter, Rogers, Rousseau, Shanklin, Shellabarger, Sloan, Starr, Stevens, Taber, Thayer, Francis Thomas, John L. Thomas, Trimble, Robert T. Van Horn, Warner, Wentworth, Whaley, Windom, Winfield, and Woodbridge-62. So the amendment was rejected.
ENROLLED JOINT RESOLUTIONS SIGNED.
Mr. TROWBRIDGE, from the Committee on Enrolled Bills, reported that the committee had examined and found truly enrolled joint resolutions of the following titles; which were thereupon signed by the Speaker:
Joint resolution (S. R. No. 34) expressive of the gratitude of the nation to the officers, soldiers, and seamen of the United States; and
Joint resolution (S. R. No. 75) making appropriations for the expenses of collecting the revenue from customs.
DEEPENING SOUTHWEST PASS.
The SPEAKER laid before the House a communication from the Secretary of War, transmitting a report of a board of engineers relative to the deepening of the Southwest Pass of the Mississippi, in reply to a resolution of the House of April 20, 1866; which was ordered to be printed, and referred to the Committee on Commerce.
TELEGRAPH TO THE WEST INDIES.
Mr. ELIOT. I submit the following report from the committee of conference on the disagreeing votes of the two Houses on the bill in relation to a telegraph between the United States and the West Indies:
The committee of conference on the disagreeing votes of the two Houses on the bill (S. No. 26) entitled “An act to encourage telegraphic communication between the United States and the island of Cuba and other West India islands, and the Bahamas," having met, after full and free conference have agreed to recommend, and do recommend, to their respective Houses as follows:
That the Senate agree to the first amendment of the House of Representatives to the bill, and that it agree to the second amendment of the House with an amendment, as follows: at the end of the amendment insert the words "subject, however, to the power of Congress to alter and determine said rates;" and the House agree to the same.
Z. CHANDLER, L. M. MORRILL, JOHN CONNESS, Managers on the part of the Senate. THOMAS D. ELIOT, CHARLES O'NEILL, NELSON TAYLOR, Managers on the part of the House. Mr. ELIOT. I demand the previous question on the adoption of the report.
Mr. RANDALL, of Pennsylvania. Mr. Speaker, can I have the whole of that bill reported?
The SPEAKER. Not as a matter of right. Mr. RANDALL, of Pennsylvania. I ask it as a privilege.
Mr. ELIOT. I will explain what the effect of the agreement is.
Mr. RANDALL, of Pennsylvania. I think this bill went through the House without fair consideration. It appropriates a large sum of money.
The SPEAKER. There is nothing before the House except the question of agreeing to the report of the committee on the disagreeing votes of the two Houses. The gentleman from Massachusetts proposes to explain it.
Mr. ELIOT. There were two amendments which were made to the bill in the House. The first amendment gave to the United States the free use of the line during time of peace as well as during time of war. The Senate agreed to that amendment.
The second amendment which was made by the House was that the company should not charge more than at the rate of $3 50 for each ten words. The Senate disagreed to that amendment. The managers on the part of the two Houses have agreed to the amendment, with this provision: "subject, however, to the power of Congress to fix and determine the rate at any time."
That is all that the committee of conference had before them. The effect of that amendment is to limit the rate of charges.
I ought to say that there is also in the bill a provision giving to Congress the right to alter and amend the bill at any time, so that the amendment which was agreed to in conference is really repeating what was in the bill before; but it made some parties more satisfied with the bill, and so the committee of conference agreed to the amendment.
Mr. RANDALL, of Pennsylvania. I think there is undue power granted there, and for the purpose of testing the question I move to lay the report on the table.
The SPEAKER. That carries the bill with it.
Mr. RANDALL, of Pennsylvania. I make the motion.
The motion to lay the bill on the table was disagreed to.
The previous question was seconded and the
of the committee of conference; and under the operation thereof the report was agreed to.
Mr. ELIOT moved to reconsider the vote by which the report of the committee was agreed to; and also moved to lay that motion on the table.
The latter motion was agreed to.
The Clerk read as follows:
SEC. 24. And be it further enacted, That the corps of Engineers shall consist of one chief of engineers, with the rank, pay, and emoluments of a brigadier general, six colonels, sixteen lieutenant colonels, twentytwo majors, thirty captains, and twenty first and ten second lieutenants, who shall have the pay and emoluments now provided by law for officers of the Engi neer corps of these several grades respectively. But after the first appointments made under the provisions of this section, as vacancies may occur in the several grades of lieutenant colonel, major, and captain, no appointments to fill the same shall be made until the number of lieutenant colonels shall be reduced to fifteen, the number of majors to twenty, and the number of captains to twenty, and thereafter the number of officers in each of said several grades shall continue to conform to such reduced numbers.
Mr. SCHENCK. There is a mistake in a title in that section which I desire to correct. I move to strike out the words "chief of engineers" and to insert "chief engineer" in lieu thereof.
The amendment was agreed to.
The twenty-fifth section was read, as follows: SEC. 25. And be it further enacted, That the five companies of engineer soldiers, and the sergeant major and quartermaster sergeant heretofore prescribed by law, shall constitute a battalion of engineers, to be officered by officers of suitable rank detailed from the corps of Engineers, and the officers of engineers acting respectively as adjutant and quartermaster of this battalion shall be entitled to the pay and emoluments of adjutants and quartermasters of cavalry.
No amendments were offered.
The twenty-sixth section was then read, as follows:
SEc. 26. And be it further enacted, That the ordnance department of the Army shall consist of the same number of officers and enlisted men as is now authorized by law, and the officers shall be of the following grades, namely: one brigadier general, three colonels, six lieutenant colonels, twelve majors, twenty captains, twelve first lieutenants, ten second lieutenants, all of whom shall have the same pay and emoluments as now provided by law, and thirteen ordnance storekeepers, of whom a number not exceeding six may also be appointed and authorized to act as paymasters at armories and arsenals. Ordnance storekeepers shall have the rank, pay, and emoluments of captains of infantry, and ordnance storekeepers and paymasters the rank, pay, and emoluments of captains of cavalry. But after the first appointments made under the provisions of this section, as vacancies may occur, reducing the number of officers in the several grades of this department below the rank of brigadier general, no appointments to fill the same shall be made until the number of colonels shall be reduced to one, the number of lieutenant colonels to three, the number of majors to six, and the number of captains to twelve; and thereafter the number of officers in each of said several grades shall continue to conform to such reduced numbers. Mr. DAWES. I offer the following amendment to that section:
On line eleven, page 15, after the word "arsenals," insert the following: "The ordnance storekeeper and paymaster at the national armory shall have the rank, pay, and emoluments of other paymasters of the Army and other;" so that it will read:
SEC. 26. And be it further enacted, That the ordnance department of the Army shall consist of the same number of officers and enlisted men as is now authorized by law, and the officers shall be of the following grades, namely: one brigadier general, three colonels, six lieutenant colonels, twelve majors, twenty captains, twelve first lieutenants, ten second lieutenants, all of whom shall have the same pay and emoluments as now provided by law; and thirteen ordnance storekeepers, of whom a number not exceeding six may also be appointed and authorized to act as paymasters at armories and arsenals. The ordnance storekeeper and paymaster at the national armory shall have the rank, pay, and emoluments of other paymasters of the Army, and other ordnance storekeepers shall have the rank, pay, and emoluments of captains of infantry, and ordnance storekeepers and paymasters the rank, pay, and emoluments of captains of cavalry, But after the first appointments made under the provisions of this section, as vacancies may occur, reducing the number of officers in the several grades of this department below the rank of brigadier general, no appointments to fill the same shall be made until the number of colonels shall be reduced to one, the number of lieutenant colonels to three, the number of majors to six, and the number of captains to twelve; and thereafter the number of officers in each of said several grades shall continue to conform to such reduced numbers.
I desire the attention of the House for a moment while I state the object of this amend
main question ordered on agreeing to the reportment, which I think will meet the concurrence
of the chairman of the committee when I explain what it is.
The purpose of it is this: in the bill as prepared by the committee there is a provision for thirteen ordnance storekeepers, and six of them are to be also paymasters at the posts where they are stationed. One of these must be at the armory at Springfield. I wish to call the attention of the House for a moment to the duties of that storekeeper and paymaster at Springfield, and then to ask the House whether | it is not reasonable that he shall have the pay of a paymaster of the Army. The House will see that his duties are much larger than those of any paymaster in the Army; and I ask, in connection with that, attention to the peculiar facts regarding his present pay, how it comes to be what it is, what it is, and what it has been for several years.
He is storekeeper for the armory. He has in his custody, and has had for a great many years, about fifteen million dollars' worth of property, four or five times more than is possible for any other storekeeper to have. He has been obliged to pay out during the last four years between four and five million dollars each year. That is a larger amount than he had to pay before the war, and larger than he will have to pay hereafter. He would be obliged to pay, under the present capacity of the armory, if it should be run to its full capacity, that sum; but it is not probable that it will be run to that capacity. He will be obliged to pay every year about two million dollars. He will certainly be obliged to keep now, after the war is closed, a much larger amount of property than during the war, as arms are coming back to the armory every day, and his liability as a storekeeper is therefore very largely increased. In addition to these duties as storekeeper and of paymaster at this armory, he is also commissary at the armory, and is obliged every year to pay out about thirty thousand dollars in that capacity.
Now, he has been obliged to perform all these duties for a salary of $1,250 a year, without any emoluments, without any rations. The salary was fixed by law some time ago; I think it was when the superintendency of the armories was transferred from the military to the civil department.
He has been twenty-five years at that armory, and is an old and experienced man, whose skill and ability in his profession would have secured him almost any position in civil or military life. He has retained his position during the war from a sense of duty, not because he could earn as much money there as he could anywhere else, and from a feeling that after the war was over Congress would do justice to him and raise his compensation.
He has arrived at that period of life when he can hope for no promotion; and situated as he is, as a salaried officer, he is not entitled to any promotion in the Army. He now asks only that he may have the rank and pay of an ordinary paymaster.
I will send to the Clerk's desk to be read a letter from the present chief of the Ordnance Bureau, who was, during the war, superintendent of the national armory; also a letter from the present superintendent of the armory; and I think they will satisfy the House that this officer ought to be put simply where any other paymaster is put, though his duties and responsibilities are greater than those of any of them. The Clerk read as follows:
ORDNANCE OFFICE, WAR DEPARTMENT, WASHINGTON, February 26, 1866. SIR: In reply to the inquiry contained in your letter of the 23d instant, I say unhesitatingly that I do not consider the compensation now allowed to military storekeepers and military storekeepers and paymasters of ordnance as a fair remuneration for the services rendered, and the heavy responsibilities which are devolved upon them.
Prior to the passage of the act of August 23, 1842, military storekeepers were allowed the pay and emoluments of captains of infantry, and military storekeepers and paymasters the pay and emoluments of captains of cavalry. This compensation is not too much for the services required of them. Their responsibilities for money and for other property is often very great, and within the last four years their
To cite your own case as an example, during the three years that you were under my command at Springfield armory, your disbursements averaged $5,000,000 a year, and your property responsibility was often greater than that amount. In making payments to the large number of men who were constantly leaving the armory before the pay-rolls could be regularly made, mistakes were unavoidable in over-payments, and in all cases the loss had to be made good by you. It would be only just that your pay should be increased, and I hope that it will be done. Yours, very truly,
A. B. DYER, B. M. G., Chief of Ordnance.
EDWARD INGERSOLL, Esq., M. S. K. and P. M., Springfield Armory, Springfield, Massachusetts.
NATIONAL ARMORY, SPRINGFIELD, March 22, 1866. SIR: I take pleasure in bearing my testimony to the heavy responsibility devolved upon you as military storekeeper and paymaster at this armory, and the inadequate pay now granted by law for such duties. I am of opinion that the pay given to Army paymasters would not be too great considering the large bonds required of you and the amount of property and funds for which you are held responsible. Very respectfully, your obedient servant, T. T. S. LAIDLEY,
Brevet Colonel, Major of Ordnance Commanding. EDWARD INGERSOLL, Esq., Paymaster U. S. A.
Mr. SCHENCK. I appreciate the motive which induces the gentleman from Massachusetts [Mr. DAWES] to move this amendment. It is admitted on all hands that these officers have been inadequately paid heretofore; they have, in fact, had less pay than similar officers in the quartermaster's department. They are now receiving, however, one class $1,040 and another class $1,490 per annum, by an increase of $240 per year added to the pay of each class since the law was originally enacted.
The committee propose, in the case of ordnance storekeepers, to increase their rank, pay, and allowances to those of a captain of infantry, which is less than a captain of cavalry receives, and to make six out of the thirteen ordnance storekeepers, who are also acting as and having the responsibilities of paymasters, of the rank and with the pay and emoluments of captains of cavalry, being about one hundred and eighty dollars a year more.
The gentleman from Massachusetts [Mr. DAWES] proposes to make an exception in favor of the ordnance storekeeper and master at Springfield. I admit, while there are six of these thirteen storekeepers who also serve as paymasters, the burden of responsibility upon the one at Springfield is perhaps in some respects as great as of the other five in respect to the amount of property under his charge and the, payments he has to make. These storekeepers, who act also as paymasters, expend from about five thousand dollars per month at the two or three western arsenals which have recently been established, one at Rock Island and one at Columbus, up to about two hundred thousand dollars per month, which has been the rate of expenditure at Springfield.
How, if the proposition of the gentleman from Massachusetts is to be confined exclusively to making a distinction between the officer at Springfield and the others, I do not know that there ought to be any objection to it. But I think, as a general thing, the allow ance proposed to be made to them as captains of cavalry is quite sufficient.
Mr. DAWES. I ought to have added that the officer at Springfield is obliged to give $50,000 bonds, while ordinary paymasters give only $20,000 bonds.
Mr. SCHENCK. The gentleman is correct. I would suggest to him that his amendment now speaks of "the paymaster and storekeeper at the national armory; " I think he ought to say, "at Springfield, Massachusetts." Mr. DAWES. I have modified my amendment in that way.
Mr. SCHENČK. They are all national armories. But this advantage should not be extended to any except that one officer, who has so many more responsibilities than the others.
Mr. O'NEILL. I desire to ask the chairman of the committee a question. Why is a distinction made between the military storekeepers in the ordnance department and the storeduties and responsibilities have greatly increased. keepers in the quartermaster's department?
The bill provides that those of the one class shall receive the pay of captains of infantry, while those of the other class receive the pay of captains of cavalry.
Mr. SCHENCK. I am very happy to be able to give the gentleman an explanation. The storekeepers in the quartermaster's de partment, who are to receive only the pay of captains of infantry, do not act also as pay masters. There are sixteen of those; and they are all put upon the same footing. Of military storekeepers in the ordnance department, there are thirteen, seven of whom act simply as storekeepers like those in the quartermaster's department, and they are put on the same footing as to pay with the storekeepers in the quartermaster's department. But six of these mili tary storekeepers in the ordnance department act also as paymasters, and they are put as to pay upon the footing of captains of cavalry, giving them an advantage of perhaps $180 a year in pay and allowances, in order to recompense them for acting as paymasters as well as military storekeepers. No distinction is. made, as the gentleman supposes, between the storekeepers in the quartermaster's department and those in the ordnance department. The storekeepers in the ordnance department who act only as military storekeepers are put upon precisely the same footing as storekeepers in the quartermaster's department. The distinction is made only in the case of a half dozen who serve also as paymasters.
Mr. O'NEILL. It seems, then, that the distinction is made on account of the additional responsibility of particular officers.
Mr. SCHENCK. And their additional duties. The distinction has always been made. I will give the gentleman the law on the subject. By a law passed in 1842, the paymasters and military storekeepers at the armories and at the arsenals of construction at Pittsburg, Watervliet, and Washington city, received $1,250; and all others who served as storekeepers, like those in the quartermas ter's department, received $800. But by an act passed in 1857, the sum of $240 per annum was added to officers all round, increasing the compensation of those acting as storekeepers and paymasters to $1,490, and that of the others to $1,040. The distinction exists under the present law; and this bill proposes simply to continue it.
Mr. O'NEILL. The gentleman from Massachusetts has urged an increase of pay to the mil itary storekeeper at Springfield on the ground that he performs the duties of paymaster, and is subjected to a large responsibility. Now, I wish to state that there are other officers in the country whose duties as military storekeepers have, during the last few years, imposed on them very great labor and responsibility. Sir, a case in point is that of the storekeeper at the arsenal on the Schuylkill, at Philadelphia. Dur ing the last four or five years the quantity of materials stored in that arsenal has at times amounted in value to ten or fifteen million dollars, imposing, of course, a great responsibility upon the storekeeper at that post. I also know that the military storekeeper at Washington has had an almost equal responsibility resting upon him. Why should not the military storekeepers at these two points have an increase of sal ary? The extent and importance of their duties certainly entitle these officers to a larger pay than the ordinary military storekeepers.
Mr. DAWES. I suggest to the gentleman that the difference between the two cases is this: in the case he speaks of the storekeeper had, during the war, the custody of a large amount of property, which is now constantly growing less; while the property in the custody of the storekeeper at Springfield is all the time increasing, as the military stores now go there for safe-keeping. In addition to that, his duties as storekeeper are by no means the whole of his duties. He makes large disbursements of money, equal in amount to those of any ordinary paymaster in the field. He has to perform, also, the duties of a commissary. Those are duties which do not devolve upon the store
keeper either at the Schuylkill arsenal or here in this city. This is the reason why the distinction proposed to be made is just.
I admit the propriety of a provision in the bill that all of these should be raised to that particular point. I only ask the House to consider whether this one should not be provided for, as the others have been paid more than he has been, and who has had far greater responsibility. I hope my friend will not press his amendment.
Mr. O'NEILL. I approve of the amendment of the gentleman from Massachusetts. But he is mistaken in reference to the Schuylkill arsenal.
approved by a military board, to be convened by the Secretary of War for that purpose; and officers while so detailed shall receive the pay and emoluments of cavalry officers of their respective grades; and enlisted men while so detailed shall, when deemed necessary, be mounted upon horses provided by the Government.
SEC. 28. And be it further enacted, That in all the staff corps [or departments] promotions may hereafter be made without regard to seniority in the date of appointments or commissions, and the same rule of promotion by merit alone shall apply to all officers of the line above the grade of captain.
Mr. GARFIELD. I move to strike out the word "above" and insert "below;" and to strike out captain" and insert "colonel."
Mr. Speaker, there is no good reason why this rule of promotion should not apply to company officers. I am very glad that the committee has
Mr. DAWES. I do not want to be considered as opposing the amendment of the gentle-undertaken to adopt the principle of promotion man from Pennsylvania.
Mr. O'NEILL. The Schuylkill arsenal has been the great distributing arsenal of the country. It has been so since the late war with England. It will still continue to be the receptacle of an immense amount of Government material. It is all under the direction of the military storekeeper. If I am not mistaken it is the duty of that military storekeeper to pay the employés of that arsenal. I think it is a point where we should give this military storekeeper the pay and emoluments of a cap
tain of cavalry.
Mr. SCHENCK, We have long since passed the section in reference to military storekeepers.
Mr. O'NEILL. I understand the proposition is in reference to military storekeepers.
Mr. SCHENCK. If the gentleman will turn back to the sixteenth section he will find we there dispose of the quartermaster's department. I am glad it is disposed of. We were a long time at it. In the seventeenth section there is a provision about military storekeepers. We are now on the section providing for the ordnance department. We provide there shall be thirteen ordnance storekeepers, of whom a number not exceeding six may also be appointed and authorized to act as paymasters at armories and arsenals. The proposition is to make a distinction in favor of those who act as paymasters. The gentleman from Massachusetts proposes to make a still further distinction in favor of the one at Springfield on the ground, which I admit does exist, that his responsibility is to the extent of $50,000,000, while the highest responsibility of the others is $12,000,000, running down to $600,000.
Mr. O'NEILL. I thought I was at the proper place to move the amendment. This military storekeeper at the Schuylkill arsenal has greater responsibility than any other military storekeeper, and I do not see why he should not have his pay increased.
Mr. SCHENCK demanded the previous question.
The previous question was seconded and the main question ordered.
The amendment was agreed to.
Mr. FARQUHAR. I move to strike out in line thirteen the word "infantry," and insert "cavalry" in lieu thereof. I desire to make an inquiry of the chairman of the Military Committee as to the effect of the section. I see it provides for six ordnance storekeepers as paymasters. It provides for thirteen in all. Is it the design that the remaining five shall not act as paymasters?
Mr. SCHENCK. There are six arsenals where the ordnance storekeepers act as paymasters, and we provide only for that number.
Mr. FARQUHAR. I withdraw
The Clerk read as follows: SEC. 27. And be it further enacted, That there shall be one chief signal officer of the Army, who shall have the rank, pay, and emoluments of a colonel of Cavalry. And the Secretary of War shall have power to detail from the Army six officers, and not to exceed one hundred non-commissioned officers and privates, to be taken from the battalion of engineers, for the performance of signal duty: Provided, That no officer or enlisted man shall be detailed to serve in the signal corps until he shall have been examined and
by merit. It is an innovation upon the established customs of the Army, and will no doubt throw out some men and work some hardship. But the good that will be accomplished by it is so very great that I believe the section ought to stand with the amendment I have suggested. Where a man has devoted himself for life to the military profession, and has been compelled to serve perhaps five years in a single grade before the promotion comes, it may be said that it is hard that he should not be promoted as a matter of course. But on the other hand, if five years' service has not made him by his merits worthy of a higher grade, he ought not to be promoted.
Mr. WRIGHT. I wish to ask the gentleman a single question. His amendment proposes to strike out the word "above" and insert the word "below," and strike out the word " captain" and insert "colonel," so that it will read, "and the same rule of promotion by merit alone shall apply to all officers of the line below the grade of colonel." Does he consider a lieutenant colonel and a major officers of the line, or are they field officers?
Mr. GARFIELD. Certainly, they are officers of the line.
Mr. WRIGHT. There are too many tinkers about this.
Mr. SCHENCK. I ought to be satisfied, I think, when I consider that the argument of my colleague is an answer and an objection to his own amendment. But I will undertake to extend that objection somewhat by a little further argumentation.
He proposes to reverse the order in which distinction shall be made between promotion by seniority and by merit, so that the first promotions shall be by merit and the subsequent promotions in the higher grade only by seniority. If he does this he will simply reverse the whole order of proceedings in all other services, in any way assimilated to our own, and which exist in the very nature of these military offices.
Now, sir, the reason why promotions in the lower grades are confined to seniority in all services except our own, as far as I know, and that promotion by merit comes in as the officer rises in grade, I take to be this: a young man entering the Army as a second or first lieutenant, on having risen as captain to the command of a company, does not develop that particular genius and power of comprehension or combination which may make him a better field officer. Therefore, in all the various military services of the world they have gone on promoting by seniority alone in the first classes of officers until they reach some point (which we propose shall be above the grade of captain) where the officer is supposed to have developed the fact whether he is fit for a higher trust. Many a man will make a first-rate lieutenant or captain, be perfectly at home in all the routine of company matters and subordinate command, and yet be unfit for the larger and more comprehensive duties of a higher command, either of a regiment, brigade, or division. The gentleman, however, seeks to reverse all this.
To show that I am sustained by the practice of other countries, I beg leave to refer him and
the House to what is the practice in all the principal armies of the world. I hold in my hand a report upon this subject made by Major Mordecai, of the United States Army, who with General McClellan and another officer was sent abroad as a commission to look into the military systems of European countries. From this report I find that in Russia
"Promotions are ordinarily made by seniority. In the guards, promotions are made regimentally to the grade of lieutenant colonel, inclusive; in the infantry of the active army, regimental promotions are made to the rank of captain, inclusive; above that grade the promotion is by divisions of four regiments; in the artillery, the promotions are made by brigades of four batteries; officers of artillery not attached to batteries are promoted separately. Above the grade of colonel, promotions are made through the whole army at the pleasure of the Emperor; so are extraorgrade.'
dinary promotions for distinguished services in any
Throughout the whole army any officer who has shown what he is fit for is selected for any higher position purely and solely upon his merits.
I will now refer to another Government in which the army is a very important part of the public service, and where its organization is admitted to have been brought to very great perfection. I refer to Prussia. Major Mor decai says, in his report, in reference to that country
"Promotions are made according to seniority, and by regiments or corps, to the grade of major, except in case of incompetency on the part of the senior captain to command a battalion. Above the grade of major, the promotions are made by selections; but the order of seniority is habitually followed in time of peace owing partly to the difficulty in such a time of determining real military merit.'
We find that in France
"For brilliant action noticed in general orders promotions are made without regard to the above rules."
The rules referred to relate to the term of service, and the grades a man must be in before he can be promoted. The report goes on
'And generally, in time of war, the term of service required for promotion may be reduced one half. Ordinary promotions are made partly by selection by the Emperor, partly by seniority."
Without detaining the House further by referring to these extracts, I may say that the same rule prevails in the military service of every great military nation, and it is founded upon the principle that a man may make a good subaltern, may have all the knowledge necessary for a company officer detailed on subordinate duty up to a certain point, but that there is ordinarily somewhere, if you will have the best selections, when they must be made with reference to merit.
Now, in our own Army during the late war a law was enacted authorizing officers of the regular Army to be commissioned and serve as officers of volunteers; and everywhere throughout the whole extent of that Army of millions of men this principle was resorted to, and selections were made instead of the regular step by step tread-mill promotion, which carries up the dullest and poorest, as well as the best, in regular order. The truth is, the object is to prevent by the regular promotion the inefficient man, or the least efficient, being brought up to the highest positions, thus having your Army die like some old tree at the top and become rotten there while all the vigor is below.
I trust, therefore, that no reversal of this rule will be adopted by the House, and that we shall not abandon the practice as well as the theory of all military Governments in regard to promotions.
Mr. WRIGHT. I desire to ask the chairman of the Committee on Military Affairs, what is the object of inserting in this section these words that seem to exclude captains from that kind of promotion that is given to general and field officers?
If I understand that section there is one rule in regard to general and field officers, that they shall be chosen without any regard to seniority of service. They are selected by the President of the United States, subject to the advice and consent of the Senate. Now, I should like to