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DEBATES AND PROCEEDINGS
CONGRESS OF THE UNITED STATES;
IMPORTANT STATE PAPERS AND PUBLIC DOCUMENTS,
THE LAWS OF A PUBLIC NATURE;
WITH A COPIOUS INDEX.
COMPRISING THE PERIOD FROM DECEMBER 7, 1801, TO MARCH 3, 1803,
COMPILED FROM AUTHENTIC MATERIALS.
PRINTED AND PUBLISHED BY GALES AND SEATON.
PROCEEDINGS AND DEBATES
THE SENATE OF THE UNITED STATES,
AT THE FIRST SESSION OF THE SEVENTH CONGRESS, BEGUN AT THE CITY OF WASHINGTON, DECEMBER 7, 1801.
MONDAY, December 7, 1801.
The first session of the Seventh Congress of the United States commenced this day, conformably to the Constitution, and the Senate assembled at the Capitol in the City of Washington.
THEODORE FOSTER, from Rhode Island;
JOHN E. HOWARD, from Maryland;
the absence of the VICE PRESIDENT, they have elected ABRAHAM BALDWIN President of the Senate, pro tempore.
Ordered, That the Secretary acquaint the House of Representatives that a quorum of the Senate is assembled and ready to proceed to business, and that, in the absence of the Vice President, they have elected ABRAHAM BALDWIN President of the Senate pro tempore.
A message from the House of Representatives informed the Senate that a quorum of the House is assembled, and have elected NATHANIEL MACON
STEVENS THOMPSON MASON and WILSON their Speaker, and are ready to proceed to business.
STEPHEN R. BRADLEY, appointed a Senator by the State of Vermont, for the remainder of the term for which their late Senator, Elijah Paine, was appointed; JOHN BRECKENRIDGE, appointed a Senator by the State of Kentucky; CHRISTOPHER ELLERY, appointed a Senator by the State of Rhode Island, for the remainder of the term for which their late Senator, Ray Greene, was appointed; JAMES JACKSON, appointed a Senator by the State of Georgia; GEORGE LOGAN, appointed a Senator by the Executive of the State of Pennsylvania, in the place of their late Senator, Peter Muhlenberg, resigned; SIMEON OLCOTT, appointed a Senator by the State of New Hampshire, for the remainder of the term for which their late Senator, Samuel Livermore, was appointed; URIAH TRACY, appointed a Senator by the State of Connecticut; and ROBERT WRIGHT, appointed a Senator by the State of Maryland, severally produced their credentials, and took their seats in the Senate.
The VICE PRESIDENT being absent, the Senate proceeded to the election of a President pro tempore, as the Constitution provides; and ABRAHAM BALDWIN was chosen.
The PRESIDENT administered the oath, as the law prescribes, to Mr. BRADLEY, Mr. BRECKENRIDGE, Mr. ELLERY, Mr. JACKSON, Mr. OLCOTT, Mr. TRACY, and Mr. WRIGHT, and the affirmation to Mr. LOGAN.
Ordered, That the Secretary wait on the President of the United States and acquaint him that a quorum of the Senate is assembled, and that, in
Ordered, That Messrs. ANDERSON and JACKSON be a committee on the part of the Senate, together with such committee as the House of Representatives may appoint on their part, to wait on the President of the United States and notify him that a quorum of the two Houses is assembled, and ready to receive any communications that he may be pleased to make to them.
A message from the House of Representatives informed the Senate that the House agree to the resolution of the Senate for the appointment of a joint committee to wait on the President of the United States, and have appointed a committee on their part.
Resolved, That a committee be appointed to join such gentlemen as shall be appointed by the House of Representatives, to take into consideration a statement made this day by the Secretary of the Senate, respecting books and maps purchased in consequence of an act of Congress, passed 24th April, 1800, and to make report of their opinion respecting the future arrangement of said books and maps; and that Messrs. TRACY and NICHOLAS be the committee on the part of the Senate.
Mr. ANDERSON reported, from the joint committee, that they had waited on the President of the United States and acquainted him that a quorum of both Houses is assembled, and that the President of the United States informed the committee that he would make a communication to them by message to-morrow.
TUESDAY, December 8.
JONATHAN DAYTON and AARON OGDEN, from the State of New Jersey, and JESSE FRANKLIN
from the State of North Carolina, severally attended.
Resolved, That two Chaplains, of different denominations, be appointed to Congress for the present session, one by each House, who shall interchange weekly.
Among our Indian neighbors, also, a spirit of peace and friendship generally prevails; and I am happy to inform you that the continued efforts to introduce among them the implements and the practice of husbandry, and of the household arts, have not been without success; that they are becoming more and more sensible of the superiority of this dependence for clothing and subsistence, over the precarious resources of hunt
A message from the House of Representatives informed the Senate that the House concur in the resolution of the Senate for the appointment of a joint committee respecting the books and maps purchased in pursuance of an act of Congress, of the 24th of April, 1800, and have appointed a committee on their part. They agree to the resolution of the Senate for the appointment of two Chap-ing and fishing; and already we are able to announce lains during the present session.
Resolved, That each Senator be supplied, during the present session, with three such newspapers, printed in any of the States, as he may choose, provided that the same be furnished at the rate usual for the annual charge of such papers.
The following Letter and Message were received from the PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES, by Mr. Lewis, his Secretary:
DECEMBER 8, 1801.
SIR: The circumstances under which we find our
selves at this place rendering inconvenient the mode heretofore practised, of making by personal address the first communications between the Legislative and Executive branches, I have adopted that by Message, as used on all subsequent occasions through the session. In doing this I have had principal regard to the convenience of the Legislature, to the economy of their time, to their relief from the embarrassment of immediate answers, on subjects not yet fully before them, and to the benefits thence resulting to the public affairs. Trusting that a procedure founded in these motives will meet their approbation, I beg leave, through you, sir, to communicate the enclosed Message, with the documents accompanying it, to the honorable the Senate, and pray you to accept, for yourself and them, the homage of my high respect and consideration.
The Hon. the PRESIDENT OF THE SENATE. Fellow-citizens of the Senate,
and House of Representatives:
It is a circumstance of sincere gratification to me that, on meeting the great council of our nation, I am able to announce to them, on grounds of reasonable certainty, that the wars and troubles which for so many years afflicted our sister nations, have at length come to an end; and that the communications of peace and commerce are once more opening among them. Whilst we devoutly return thanks to the beneficent Being who has been pleased to breathe into them the spirit of conciliation and forgiveness, we are hound, with peculiar gratitude, to be thankful to Him that our own peace has been preserved through so perilous a season, and ourselves permitted quietly to cultivate the earth, and to practice and improve those arts which tend to increase our comforts. The assurances, indeed, of friendly disposition, received from all the Powers with whom we have principal relations, had inspired a confidence that our peace with them would not have been disturbed. But a cessation of irregularities which had affected the commerce of neutral nations, and of the irritations and injuries produced by them, cannot but add
that, instead of that constant diminution of their numbers, produced by their wars and their wants, some of them begin to experience an increase of population.
To this state of general peace with which we have been blessed, one only exception exists. Tripoli, the least considerable of the Barbary States, had come forward with demands unfounded either in right or in compact, and had permitted itself to denounce war, on our failure to comply before a given day. The style of the I sent a small demands admitted but one answer. squadron of frigates into the Mediterranean, with assurances to that Power of our sincere desire to remain in peace; but with orders to protect our commerce against the threatened attack. The measure was seasonable and salutary. The Bey had already declared war. His cruisers were out. Two had arrived at Gibraltar. Our commerce in the Mediterranean was blockaded, and that of the Atlantic in peril. The arrival of our squadron dispelled the danger. One of the Tripolitan cruisers, having fallen in with and engaged the small schooner Enterprize, commanded by Lieutenant Sterret, which had gone as a tender to our larger vessels, was captured, after a heavy slaughter of her men, without the loss of a single one on our part. The bravery exhibited by our citizens on that element will, I trust, be a testimony to the world that it is not the want of that virtue which makes us seek their peace, but a conscientious desire to direct the energies of our nation to the multiplication of the human race, and not to its destruction. Unauthorized by the Constitution, without the sanction of Congress, to go beyond the line of defence, the vessel, being disabled from committing further hostilities, was liberated with its crew. The Legislature will doubtless consider whether, by authorizing measures of offence also, they will place our force on an equal footing with that of its adversaries. I communicate all material information on this subject, that, in the exercise of this important function confided by the Constitution to the Legislature exclusively, their judgment may form itself on a knowledge and consideration of every circumstance of weight.
I wish I could say that our situation with all the other Barbary States was entirely satisfactory. Discovering that some delays had taken place in the performance of certain articles stipulated by us, I thought it my duty, by immediate measures for fulfilling them, to vindicate to ourselves the right of considering the effect of departure from stipulation on their side. From the papers which will be laid before you, you will be enabled to judge whether our treaties are regarded by them as fixing at all the measure of their demands, or, as guarding from the exercise of force our vessels within their power; and to consider how far it will be safe and expedient to leave our affairs with them in their present posture.