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An increase of manufacturing villages upon her water-falls would bring a market to every farmer's door, offering him a higher price for his produce than he could obtain in any New England city, where he must compete with the products of the west.
This can be easily accomplished by efficient protection to domestic industry, and by encouraging individual enterprise. Protection of manufacturing and mechanical interests, is the only principle on which the price of labor can be kept up in America, since the free trade system will bring it into competition with the low priced labor of Europe.
The present Tariff needs no comment, to satisfy any reasonable man of its beneficial results, who will for a moment compare the present prosperous condition of the country with that of 1842.
Labor has never been in greater demand; has never received better pay, than at the present time; and, if there is a class of citizens among us who deserve encouragement and protection, it is that class who labor from morning till night, and from year to year; who support themselves, and help support the rest. Hence the folly of quarreling with a tariff which pays both labor and capital.
The subject of railroads is at present one of deep interest in the State; and, in legislating upon it, it is well to be divested of all selfish and sectional views and feelings, and give to every section of the State all to which it is entitled from its natural location, consistent with the general welfare of the whole. The present railroad law is arbitrary and anti-democratic, and I recommend the repeal of so much of it as gives to the Governor the power to order the Commissioners to locate a railroad contrary to their own convictions of the public good.
The law of the United States requiring each state to be districted for the choice of Representatives to Congress, has been totally disregarded by our own State up to the present time. It is not to be presumed that the people will respect
the laws which we make, while we disregard the laws of Congress; and it is a very tame business for the Congress of the United States to allow men to hold seats in that body, who have never been elected according to the laws of their own making, but who have treated them with contempt.
I recommend that the law of Congress be complied with, and that the State be properly and justly districted without delay.
You will, if you think proper, make the necessary arrangements for receiving the share of the proceeds of the sale of the public lands, belonging to this State, now in the treasury of the United States.
There is evidently a newly awakened interest in the community in the welfare of common schools. This interest should be kept up, and increased still farther, by all proper means. All that elevates the character of primary schools, elevates the State. Whatever can be accomplished by legislation in filling our school-houses, in urging the necessity of competent teachers, and bringing every child under the influence of sound instruction, should be done. It is only when the mass of the people are intelligent, that they will sustain the higher institutions of learning. It is only when they are intelligent, that people appreciate and preserve their liberty.
I recommend that whatever sum of money be paid out of the treasury for publishing the State laws and resolves, be justly distributed among all the newspapers of every political party, published weekly in the State. Each citizen is bound to obey the laws, and should have an opportunity to learn what they are, with the least possible trouble or expense to himself, after paying his proportion of the expense for making them. No one should be compelled to take a newspaper in which he has no confidence; and any party in power, which will refuse such equitable distribution, when they speak of their democracy and love of equal rights, should
All unnecessary offices should be abolished, and strict economy observed in every department of the government; the power of the Executive lessened, by conferring upon the people the choice of all the officers of the government, which the constitution does not expressly withhold from them. A strict observance of the constitution, and a faithful and prompt administration of the laws, are essential to the welfare of the State and the safety of a free govern
The Treasurer will, in due time, make known the condition of the State finances. I have good reason to believe that the State is not embarrassed with debts.
The Asylum for the Insane has thus far answered the expectations of its early friends. Whether it will require any aid from the State, is unknown to me at present.
There are other subjects which will require your attention before the close of the present session; but, coming from my own private business, and entering upon duties in which I have had no experience, it will not be expected that I should be prepared to present them all.
Your own good judgment will suggest that no unnecessary changes should be made in existing laws. It is better to suffer some inconveniences, than to experience the evils of continual alterations.
Whatever we do, let us keep in view the interests of our fellow citizens, regardless of party, partial, or sectional considerations, looking to the great Author of our being for wisdom to guide us.
We are agents of active, industrious and persevering people, who expect, and have a right to expect, that we shall attend to their business without delay, close the session, and go home to attend to our own.
Executive Chamber, June 5th, 1846.