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it, during a short period; but the compensation is to be found in the more favorable operation of others. Now I am fully persuaded that, in the first instance, no part of the union would share more largely than New England, in the aggregate of the benefits resulting from the tariff. But the habits of economy of her people, their industry, their skill, their noble enterprise, the stimulating effects of their more rigorous climate, all tend to insure to her the first and the richest fruits of the tariff. The middle and the western states will come in afterwards for their portion, and all will participate in the advantage of internal exchanges and circulation. No, quarter of the union will urge, with a worse grace than New England, objections to a measure, having for its object the advancement of the interests of the whole; for no quarter of the union participates more extensively in the benefits flowing from the general government. Her tonnage, her fisheries, her foreign trade, have been constantly objects of federal care. There is expended the greatest portion of the public revenue. The building of the public ships; their equipments; the expenses incident to their remaining in port, chiefly take place there. That great drain on the revenue, the revolutionary pension law, inclines principally towards New England. I do not, however, complain of these advantages which she enjoys. She is probably fairly entitled to them. But gentlemen from that quarter may, at least, be justly reminded of them, when they complain of the onerous effect of one or two items of the tariff.
Mr. Chairman, I frankly own that I feel great solicitude for the success of this bill. The entire independence of my country on all foreign states, as it respects a supply of our essential wants, has ever been with me a favorite object. The war of our revolution effected our political emancipation. The last war contributed greatly towards accomplishing our commercial freedom. But our complete independence will only be consummated after the policy of this bill shall be recognised and adopted. We have, indeed, great difficulties to contend with — old habits, colonial usages, the obduracy of the colonial spirit, the enormous profits of a foreign trade, prosecuted under favorable circumstances, which no longer continue. I will not despair; the cause, I verily believe, is the cause of the country. It may be postponed; it may be frustrated for the moment, but it must finally prevail. Let us endeavor to acquire for the present congress, the merit of having laid this solid foundation of the national prosperity. If, as I think, fatally for the public interest, the bill 'shall be defeated, what will be the character of the account which we shall have to render to our constituents upon our return among them? We shall be asked, what have you done to remedy the disorders of the public currency? Why, Mr. Secretary of the treasury made us a long report on that matter, containing much valuable information, and some
very good reasoning, but, upon the whole, we found that subject rather above our comprehension, and we concluded that it was wisest to let it regulate itself. What have you done to supply the deficit in the treasury ? We thought that, although you are all endeavoring to get out of the banks, it was a very good time for us to go into them, and we have authorized a loan. You have done something then, certainly, on the subject of retrenchment. Here, at home, we are practicing the greatest economy, and our daughters, no longer able to wear calico gowns, are obliged to put on homespun. Why, we have saved, by the indefatigable exertions of a member from Tennessee (general Cocke), fifty thousand dollars, which were wanted for the Yellow Stone expedition. No, not quite so much ; for thirty thousand dollars of that sum were still wanted, although we stopped the expedition at the Council Bluffs. And we have saved another sum, which we hope will give you great satisfaction. After nearly two days' debate, and a division between the two houses, we struck off two hundred dollars from the salary of the clerk of the attorney general. What have you done to protect home industry from the effects of the contracted policy of foreign powers? We thought it best, after much delibe. ration, to leave things alone at home and to continue our encouragement to foreign industry. Well, surely you have passed some law to reanimate and revive the hopes of the numerous bankrupts that have been made by the extraordinary circumstances of the world, and the ruinous tendency of our policy? No; the senate could not agree on that subject, and the bankrupt bill failed ?
Can we plead, sir, ignorance of the general distress, and of the ardent wishes of the community for that protection of its industry which this bill proposes ? No, sir, almost daily, throughout the session, have we been receiving petitions, with which our table is now loaded, humbly imploring us to extend this protection. Unanimous resolutions from important state legislatures have called upon us to give it, and the people of whole states in mass almost in mass, of New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, and Ohio — have transmitted to us their earnest and humble petitions to encourage the home industry. Let us not turn a deaf ear to them. Let us not disappoint their just expectations. Let us manifest, by the passage of this bill, that congress does not deserve the reproaches which have been cast on it, of insensibility to the wants and sufferings of the people.
MISSION TO SOUTH AMERICA.
HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES, MAY 10, 1820.
(At this period of the session of the sixteenth congress, only five days before its close, after which he temporarily retired, in November following, by resigning as speaker, Mr. Clay had the gratification of witnessing the triumphant result of his oftrepeated efforts in the cause of South American independence. The resolution on the subject which he had offered on the third of April, was supported on this occasion by the following speech, and adopted by the house by a vote of eighiy to seventy-five. It was understood that the measure was carried against the wishes and induence of the administration.
The wisdom of the policy proposed and advocated by Mr. Clay, from 1818, or even an earlier period, until finally adopted by the congress of the United States, namely, in recognising the independence of the infant republics of South America, was proved by the course of the British government, in being the first of the great European powers to follow the example. In June, 1824, the cabinet of George the Fourth determined on the recognition of Mexico, Colombia, and Buenos Ayres, as independent states; and in 1826, that great s'atesman, Mr CANNING, in a speech in the house of commons, alluding to the occupation of Spain by a French army, about that time, used the following memorable words: 'I admit that the entry of a French army into Spain was a disparagement to Great Britain. Do you think, that for the disparagement to England we have not been compensated? I looked, sir, at Spain by another name than Spain. I looked upon that power as Spain and the Indies.' I looked at the Inuties, and there I have called a new world into existence, and thus redressed the balance of power. A comparison of dates will show how much the American statesman was in advance of the British minister, in 'calling this new world into existence.')
The house being in committee of the whole, on the state of the union, and a motion being made to that effect, the committee resolved to proceed to the consideration of the following resolutions :
Resolved, That it is expedient to provide by law a suitable outfit and salary for such minister or ministers as the president, by and with the advice and consent of the senate, may send to any of the governments of South America, which have established, and are maintaining, their independence on Spain :
Resolved, That provision ought to be made for requesting the president of the United States to cause to be presented to the general, the most worthy and distinguished, in his opinion, in the service of any of the independent governments of South America, the sword which was given by the viceroy of Lima to captain Biddle of the Ontario, during her late cruise in the Pacific, and
which is now in the office of the department of state, with the expression of the wish of the congress of the United States, that it may be employed in the support and preservation of the liberties and independence of his country:
When Mr. Clay arose and said: It is my intention, Mr. Chairman, to withdraw the latter resolution. Since I offered it, this house (by the passage of the bill to prevent, under suitable penalties, in future, the acceptance of presents, forbidden by the constitution, to prohibit the carrying of foreigners in the public vessels, and to limit to the case of our own citizens, and to regulate, in that case, the transportation of money in them,) has, perhaps, sufficiently animadverted on the violation of the constitution, which produced that resolution. I confess, that when I heard of captain Biddle receiving from the deputy of a king the sword in question, I felt greatly mortified. I could not help contrasting his conduct with that of the surgeon on board an American man-of-war, in the bay of Naples, (I regret that I do not recollect his name, as I should like to record, with the testimony which I with pleasure bear to his highminded conduct,) who, having performed an operation on one of the suite of the emperor of Austria, and being offered fifteen hundred pistoles or dollars for his skilful service, returned the purse, and said, that what he had done was in the cause of humanity, and that the constitution of his country forbade his acceptance of the proffered boon. There was not an American heart that did not swell with pride on hearing of his noble disinterestedness. appear to me, also, that the time of captain Biddle's interposition was unfortunate to produce an agreement between the viceroy of Lima and Chili, to exchange their respective prisoners, however desirable the accomplishment of such a humane object might be. The viceroy had constantly refused to consent to any such exchange. And it is an incontestable fact, that the barbarities which have characterized the civil war in Spanish America have uniformly originated with the royalists. After the memorable battle of Maipu, decisive of the independence of Chili, and fatal to the arins of the viceroy, this interposition, if I am not mistaken, took place. The transportation of money, upon freight, from the port of Callao to that of Rio Janeiro, for royalists, appeared to me also highly improper. If we wish to preserve, unsullied, the illustrious character, which our navy justly sustains, we should repress the very first instances of irregularity. But I am willing to believe that captain Biddle's conduct has been inadvertent. He is a gallant officer, and belongs to a respectable and patriotic family. His errors, I am persuaded, will not be repeated by him or imitated by others. And I trust that there is no man more unwilling than I arn, unnecessarily to press reprehension. It is thought, moreover, by some, that the president might feel an embarrassment in executing the duty required of him by the resolution, which it was far from niy purpose to cause him. I withdraw it.
There is no connection intended, or in fact, between that resolution and the one I now propose briefly to discuss. The proposition, to recognise the independent governments of South America, offers a subject of as great importance as any which could claim the deliberate consideration of this house.
Mr. Clay then went on to say, that it appeared to him the object of this governinent, heretofore, had been, so to manage its aflairs, in regard to South America, as to produce an effect on its existing negotiations with the parent country.
The house were now apprized, by the message from the president, that this policy had totally failed; it had failed, because our country would not dishonor itself by surrendering one of the most important rights incidental to sovereignty. Although we had observed a course toward the patriots, as Mr. Gallatin said, in his communication read yesterday, greatly exceeding in rigor the course pursued towards them either by France or England; although, also, as was remarked by the secretary of state, we had observed a neutrality so strict that blood had been spilt in enforcing it; still
, Spanish honor was not satisfied, and fresh sacrifices were demanded of us. If they were resisted in form, they were substantially yielded by our course as to South America. We will not stipulate with Spain not to recognise the independence of the south; but we nevertheless grant her all she demands.
Mr. Clay said, it had been his intention to have gone into a general view of the course of policy which has characterized the general government; but on account of the lateness of the session, and the desire for an early adjournment, he should waive, for that purpose, and, in the observations he had to make, confine himself pretty much to events subsequent to the period at which he had submitted to the house a proposition having nearly the same object as this.
After the return of our commissioners from South America; after they had all agreed in attesting the fact of independent sovereignty being exercised by the government of Buenos Ayres; the whole nation looked forward to the recognition of the independence of that country, as the policy which the governinent ought to pursue. He appealed to every member 10 say, whether there was not a general opinion, in case the report of that mission should turn out as it did, that the recognition of the independence of that government would follow, as a matter of course. The surprise at a different course being pursued by the executive at the last session, was proportionably great. On ihis subject, so strong was the message of the president at the commencement of the present session, that some of the presses took it for granted, that the recog. nition would follow of course, and a paper in this neighborhood has said that there was, in regard 10 that question, a race os popularity between the president of the United States and the humble