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FEBRUARY, 1798.]

Case of Griswold and Lyon.

[H. OF R.

were eye-witnesses to the fact. But the gentle should be opposed to going into any further lengthy man said there would be no peace until these proceedings on so disagreeable a subject, which members were expelled. He did not know from would prevent them from doing the business of the what he drew his conclusions. What was nation, for which they were sent. done yesterday was done before the House Mr. Nicholas had no objection to make the was in session; and it had already been deter- question the order for to-morrow, if the House mined that acts of violence committed without met. the bar, during a session of the House, are not Mr. THATCHER observed, that he had before said causes of expulsion. He did not know, therefore, that he had seen nothing on the part of Mr. Lyon, how gentlemen would support the doctrine that a in the affray of yesterday, which ought to subject member ought to be expelled for an act of vio- him to expulsion ; but the gentleman from Virlence done before the House was in session. It ginia (Mr. PARKER) said, that if he (Mr. T.) bad might be necessary, however, to investigate other had his eyes about him, he might have seen somefacts connected with these.

thing for which he ought to be expelled. If, inMr. J. Parker seconded the motion for the ex- deed, he had eyes behind he might have seen what pulsion of these members, because he believed there he alluded to; but this not being the case, he did would be no peace in the House until they were not see it. As far as the business respects Mr. expelled. He was sorry the gentleman from Mas- Lyon, some inquiry might be necessary, as all sachusetts should have said he saw nothing but he saw was, that Mr. Lyon suffered much, withwhat was passive on the part of Mr. Lyon. He out any offence on his part. He thought, therefore, himself saw more, and that gentleman must have the business should be gone into, as on a former seen it if he had his eyes about him. He said, that occasion, and that they ought to examine the subafter the offending members had been separated ject with candor, and then they should doubtless Mr. Lyon met Mr. Griswold without the bar of decide upon it with propriety. the House and began to belabor him with his Mr. SITGREAVES was against the postponement, cane, when they were again separated. The attack in order that a different course might be taken. of yesterday, Mr. P. said, at a time when the He knew nothing in this case which distinguished House ought to have been in session though it had it from a late case, and therefore could not see not come to order, would fix an indelible stain why the same course ought not to be pursued as upon it; and if these members were not expelled, was then pursued. He should therefore vote no member could consider himself as safe in his against a postponement, in order that the resoluseat. Such a transaction would certainly lower tion might be referred to the Committee of Privithat House in the estimation of their constituents. leges. He had even heard this morning, as he came to the Mr. Harper inquired whether such a motion Hall, persons in the street callout, “ There is nothing would not supersede a motion for postponement. to do in Congress to-day-there's no fighting going The SPEAKER said, it would. on!" In order to get rid of these reproaches, he Mr. HARPER then made the motion. hoped all parties would unite in expelling these Mr. Gallatin asked whether he understood the members. If their constituents chose to send them SPEAKER rightly, that a motion for a reference to back, he hoped no member would associate with a committee superseded a motion for postponeor take notice of them. And if a vote of expulsion ment ? should be agreed upon, he would afterwards move The SPEAKER said, it did. to expunge from the Journals all the entries rela- Mr. Nicholas asked whether it would not then tive to these disgraceful proceedings.

be in order to postpone the consideration of the Mr. Nicholas wished the motion to lie upon subject ? the table for the present, because he was not him- The SPEAKER answered, it would. self prepared to decide upon the subject; he wished, Mr. Nicholas renewed the motion for a postalso, that whenever the motion was taken up, gen- ponement till to-morrow. tlemen might come with their minds determined Mr. Harper, believing that it would be proper upon it, so that a long debate might not be neces- to refer this resolution to a committee, as before, sary. He therefore moved to postpone the con especially as some of the facts did not pass within sidération of this resolution to Monday.

the view of the House, he should vote against the Mr. GORDON wished to know what part of the postponement-not because he wished to avoid a resolution the gentleman from Virginia was not vote on the question ; for, if it should be the opinready to act upon ?

ion of the House that it ought not to go to a comMr. Nicholas did not understand the drift of mittee, he was perfectly ready to give a vote upon the gentleman's question. If he meant to ask the question; but he thought it better that the whether he (Mr.N.) disapproved of the vote which business should have this course.

With respect he had already given, he would answer him he to any discussion being necessary upon this subject, did not.

he perhaps might think it necessary to make some Mr. J. Williams said he should approve of the observations upon it, when the question came bemotion for postponement, if it were made for to- fore the House for decision ; for, though some morrow, instead of Monday; and he hoped the gentlemen might be endued with the happy faculty business would not only be taken up to-morrow, of doing everything in an instant, he could not but be concluded before they rose. He had sat boast of possessing that faculty. But, even if he with great patience during the late debate, but he were not desirous of discussion for his own infor


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mation, he wished it for the information of the have been best for witnesses to have delivered public; and, notwithstanding all that the House, their evidence in writing. He hoped that course had heard about a waste of public money and pub- would now be taken, and then there would be no lic time, he believed they should best serve the difficulty in reporting it to the House; and if it public by suffering the business to take the usual should be found necessary, in order to elucidate

any part of it, to put any questions to the witnesses The motion for a postponement was put and in the House. the business would be greatly facilnegatived.

itated and shortened by the evidence being reMr. SITGreaves then moved that the resolution ported. be referred to the Committee of Privileges. The question was put and carried.

Mr. Harper moved that the committee have leave to sit during the session of the House.

ENCOURAGEMENT TO COTTON GOODS. Mr. THATCHER thought, as it was probable al Mr. LIVINGSTON said he wished to propose a number of members might be wanted to give evi- resolution for the adoption of the House, which dence, the House had better adjourn, as on a former had in view the encouragement of a manufacture occasion, as it would not be proper to go on with which was much increasing in the United States, business when so many members were absent.

and might become of considerable national imporMr. T. CLAIRBORNE hoped leave would not be tance. It was to the following effect: granted for the committee to sit immediately. “ Resolved, That the Committee of Commerce and He wished them coolly to deliberate upon the bú- Manufactures be instructed to inquire whether any prosiness, which they could scarcely be expected to do, vision be expedient for encouraging the printing of when their passions were so strongly affected as white cotton goods, in the United States, and report they must be at present.

their opinion thereon to the House." The question for leave to sit during the session

The resolution was agreed to. was put and carried-46 to 36.

STATE JURISDICTION. Mr. HARPER moved that the committee be instructed to report to the House the evidence in resolution, which he yesterday laid upon the table,

Mr. Livingston called up for consideration the writing, upon which they shall found their report. on the subject of the clashing jurisdiction of

Mr. Kittera thought the facts were so notori- States ; when it was determined to be referred to ous that there was no necessity for this instruction. Mr. Harper said if his friend from Pennsylva

a committee of seven members. nia could say that every body would be satisfied

COLLECTION OF DUTIES. with the report of the committee without the evi- Mr. S. Smith said that a letter and report of the dence, he would not insist upon this motion. But Secretary of the Treasury, on the subject of reguif the evidence was not reported, how could he lating the collection of the duties arising from imsay that all the witnesses might not again be called post and tonnage, had been referred to the Combefore the House ? It was his wish to prevent mittee of Commerce and Manufactures; but as this.

it was necessary to obtain local information from Mr. J. Williams said there was a considerable parts of the Union from whence none of the memdifference between this transaction and the one bers of the committee came, they wished, for this lately under consideration. He thought in this particular purpose, to have some members added, case it would probably save much trouble to re- ; so that they might have the benefit of a member port the evidence.

from every State in the Union. Mr. Brooks said it must be recollected that the After a few observations, it was agreed that the gentleman from Virginia was not satisfied with : Committee of Commerce and Manufactures should the former report. He wished to hear the wit-, be discharged from the further consideration of nesses themselves; and if the evidence was to be this subject, and that it should be referred to a reported, he did not suppose it would be satis- committee of sixteen members. factory: Mr. Nicholas seconded the motion, because it

CASE OF GRISWOLD AND LYON. would be likely to shorten the business; but if,

Mr. Otis believed that something further was when the testimony came to be reported, there necessary to be done in respect to the unfortunate was any obscurity in it, he should feel it necessary business, which had already engaged the attention to ask the witnesses questions by way of elucida- of the House. From what had happened in the tion, as every man who was called upon as a

view of the House, it appears that the parties are judge, should be in full possession of every fact in the habit of conflicting with each other; and relative to the subject.

except they are restrained by some authority Mr. Brooks said the gentleman who had just which shall be sufficiently imposing upon them, sat down, would have no difficulty in pointing further violence may be expected. In order, out some obscurity, in order to furnish an apology therefore, to secure this House from future viofor rehearing of the witnesses.

lations of its dignity and order, he proposed the Mr. Kittera said if to report the evidence would following resolution for adoption: prevent the necessity of hearing the witnesses in Resolved, That Roger Griswold and Matthew Lyon, the House, he should not object to it; but he be members of this House, be respectively required by the lieved this would not be the case.

Speaker to pledge their words to this House, that they Mr. Venable was before of opinion that it would will not commit any act of violence upon each other du

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FEBRUARY, 1798.]
Case of Griswold and Lyon.

[H. of R. ring this session; and that if either refuse to make such decided, though they could not do it before, the engagements, the party refusing shall be committed to the members in question would be at liberty to comcustody of the Sergeant-at-Arms, until he shall comply mit any act of violence they pleased upon each with this obligation.”

other. They had seen the consequence. He Mr. Sewall understood a motion had been hoped, therefore, the House would restrain these agreed to in relation to the affair of yesterday, gentlemen in such a manner as that it may not which might produce an expulsion of th: mem- be in their power again to interrupt their' probers in question. He thought it would be better, ceedings. therefore, to alter the wording of the resolution, Mr. R. Williams defended his opinion, and inand instead of " during this session," say during sisted upon his right to deliver it; nor should he the continuance of the examination of the busi- ask any gentleman to explain to him the oath he ness before the House."

had taken to support the Constitution of the UniMr. Sirgreaves did not think any alterations ted States. When gentlemen violated the rules of were necessary. An expulsion of the members the House, the House had a righi to punish them; was a possible, but not a necessary result. If an but he was doubtful whether they had the power expulsion does not take place, the resolution will to imprison a member if he refused to say yes, to remain in operation for the remainder of the ses- a question which should be put to him. sion, which would be proper; and, if an expulsion Mr. Sewall presumed, that that House had the took place, its operation would fall of course. same right which every Court possessed, of pre

Mr. J. Williams thought it best to pass the serving its order by imprisonment of offenders; resolution as it stood. If a similar resolution had and it was incident to this authority to restrain been entered into on a former occasion, it would persons likely to commit these offences. It was probably have prevented what had now taken necessary, for the future security of the House, place.

for these gentlemen to say, they will not again Mr. R. Williams called for the reading of the assault each other. This was a means of preventresolution which was passed on a former occasion. ing, and not of punishing, offences. He had no ob[It was read. It stated “ that any personal con- jection to the resolution, therefore, on ground test between the members, before the House bad of power, but he had some doubt as to the propricome to a decision upon the business, would be ety of the expression. For, said he, suppose these considered as a high breach of privileges."] Mr. gentlemen are expelled, and Mr. G. afterwards asW. thought this resolution went as far as the saults Mr. L., the former might consider himself House had a right to go. The resolution pro- bound by his promise to the SPEAKER, and forbear posed by the gentleman from Massachusetts, went to defend himself. To correct this impropriety of farther, he thought, than they had power to go. It expression, he moved to strike out the words went to imprison one or both of the parties, if he “ during this session," and insert“ whilst members or they refused to comply with a request of the of this House." House. He had his doubts whether that House Mr. Otis consented to this amendment. had the Constitutional power to imprison a man

Mr. SITGREAVEs wished the mover to assent to for a crime, as the law only would do this. He another alteration in the phraseology of his mothought a resolution similar to that adopted on a tion. Acts might. perhaps, be committed which former occasion, would be sufficient at present; would not be called acts of violence, though very and if the mover did not think proper so to alter offensive. He wished the same words used as it. he would himself move an amendment for this formerly, viz:“personal contest with each other." purpose.

Mr. Nicholas had no objection to the general Mr. Otis flattered himself that his object would object of this resolution; but the amendment of have met with the concurrence of all sides of the the gentleman from Massachusetts went to govern House, believing that all wished to prevent future members during the recess of Congress. He supviolations of order and peace. With respect to the posed this was going further than gentlemen themdoubts of the gentleman from North Carolina, his selves intended. He thought a resolution like the politics seemed to be altogether a system of doubts. former, which should extend during the present If this system was common, it would be extremely session, would answer every purpose. He did not difficult to progress with business at all. He be- see any nece-sity to inflict penalties before a breach lieved, on the present occasion, these doubts were of order was committed. groundless. When an act of violence was done Mr. VENABLE said, the idea of the gentleman in the view of the members of the House, they from Massachusetts (Mr. SEWALL) was not corhad certainly the power to obtain some security rect, when he supposed an obligation entered into against a repetition of such violence. If this was at this time, would be binding when a person ceasnot done, the presumption was, the business of the ed to be a member of that House. All obligations session might be continually interrupted ; and had which members owe to the House, are dissolved they not the right of securing the peaceful exer- when they cease to be members; nor was it in the cise of their legislative functions for the remain- power of the House to extend the force of the der of the session ? He th this could not be resolution beyond the present session. He should

seriously doubted. With respect to the former pot object to its having that extent. He thought i resolution, if he had been in his place, he should it only reasonable, in order to obtain a prospect of

have suggested its impropriety; for, by it, it future peace in their deliberations, that these genseemed to be implied that, after the question was tlemen should declare that they will not enter into

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H. OF. R.]

Amendment to Rules, fc.

[FEBRUARY. 1798.

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any further personal contest during the session: The bill appropriating money for holding a He moved, therefore, again to alter the resolution treaty with the Indians in the State of Tennessee, to read, " during the session."

was received from the Senate with amendments; Mr. Otis hoped the amendment would be made, which were read and referred to a select comhe had too readily consented to the former alteration mittee.

The question was then taken on the resolution, and carried by a large majority, there being 73 votes in favor of it.

Monday, February 19. The Speaker asked, whether it was the pleasure A message was received from the President of of the House that the Sergeant-at-Arms should be the United States, enclosing a report from the sent for Mr. Lyon ?

Secretary of State, with an account of the losses Mr. Surgreaves said it might not be convenient recovered for captures on behalf of citizens of the for Mr. Lyon to attend the House; he asked United States, under the treaty made with Great whether the resolution might not be sent to him, Britain; which was ordered to be printed. and his answer be received in writing ?

The bill providing for the widows and orphans Mr. Nicholas supposed, that if both gentlemen of certain deceased officers, was read the third prepared a declaration in writing, and presented it time, and passed. to-morrow, it would answer the purpose.

Mr. GREGG presented a petition from Jeremiah Mr. Harper replied, the mischief intended to Hall and others, praying that a tract of land-six be guarded against might in the mean time be miles square, near the Scioto river, in the Northdone.

western Territory-may be laid off in a certain Mr. Gallatin said, he had just been called out manner, and that payments may be received for it by a member of the House, who had asked him by instalments. Referred to the committee to whether he thought it would be proper for Mr. whom bas been referred an inquiry into the law Lyon to attend the House. He supposed, there for disposing of this land. fore, if the Sergeant-at-Arms was sent for him, he would immediately attend.

RULES OF THE HOUSE. Mr. Harper hoped the Sergeant-at-Arms would

Mr. Dent, from the committee to whom was be sent.

referred two propositions for amending the standThe SPEAKER said, as soon as the Clerk had ing rules of the House, reported it as the opinion made a copy of the resolution, the Sergeant-at- of the committee, that that which goes to prevent Arms would wait upon Mr. Lyon with it. the reconsideration of a vote when there are fewer Mr. Lyon having entered,

members present than when it originally passed, The SPEAKER said, the members from Vermont ought to be adopted ; but that the one which would and Connecticut being now in their places, he prevent a motion for adjournment from being in should proceed to read the resolution which had order, when another motion was before the House, been entered into by the House. [He then read ought not to be agreed to. the resolution.]

Mr. Nicholas wished this report to he commitAs soon as it was finished reading,

ted to a Committee of the Whole. He was not Mr. Griswold rose and said, he should not hesi- ready to vote upon it; to say that no number of tate to enter into the proposed engagement. members less than had agreed to a certain propo

Mr. Lyon also rose and said, he was ready, as sition was competent to agree to another, and of it was the wish of the House, to agree to the pro- course that a majority of the House could not do position.

the business of the House. The SPEAKER said, then you do accordingly The report was accordingly committed. agree to this proposition ?

REPORTING THE DEBATES. Both answered, “I do agree."

Mr. Dawson wished the resolution which he AMENDMENT OF THE RULES, &c.

had laid upon the table, on the subject of admitMr. Harper called up his proposed amendment ting persons who attended the House for the purto the Standing Rules of the House, respecting pose of taking an account of its debates and promotions for adjournment; which was referred to ceedings within the bar of the House, to be taken the committee which has been appointed on the up and referred to the same Committee of the subject of the Rules.

Whole. Mr. J. Williams moved that the House go into The resolution was accordingly read. a Committee of the Whole on the bill for discip- Mr. SITGreaves thought it would be more elilining and organizing the Militia of the United gible that this proposition for amending the rules States; but, the sense of the House being taken, should have the same course as others, especially there appeared only 14 members for it.

as, from the information of the SPEAKER, it apMr. W. then said, as there appeared no business peared that the object of the resolution was in before the House, he would move an adjournment, practice, with the exception of one individual in order that the Committee of Privileges might note-taker, who had abused the privilege, and inattend to the business referred to them. Agreed sulted the SPEAKER and the authority of the to.

House. It was proper, therefore, that the fact The bill for the relief of William Alexander, should be stated, so as that the House might act was read the third time and passed.

upon it.

FEBRUARY, 1798.]

Piers at Newcastle, fc.

[H OF R.

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Mr. Dawson had no objection to the reference tions during the late war, which, according to the the gentleman from Pennsylvania had pointed course of the Treasury, have hitherto been discharged out; it was his opinion, however, that the other by issuing certificates of registered debt, shall be barred would have been the more direct course.

and declared void, unless claimed by the proper crediIt was accordingly referred to a select commit- tors, or their legal representatives.” tee.

AMY DARDIN. PIERS AT NEWCASTLE, DELAWARE. Upon motion of Mr. T. CLAIBORNE, the followMr. Hartley presented the petition of a num- ing resolution was agreed to—45 to 40: ber of merchants, traders, and others, of Philadel- Resolved, That a committee be appointed to bring phia. praying that some new piers may be erected in a bill for the relief of Amy Dardin.' at Newcastle, and that the old ones may be re- [This claim has been long before Congress, and

been several times the subject of discussion. It Some difference of opinion arising as to the is for the value of the famous horse Romulus, the proper reference of this petition, Messrs. HARTLEY property of the husband of the petitioner, pressed and Livingston being in favor of a reference to into the service of the United States during the the Committee of Commerce and Manufactures, war. The case of the widow is evidently a hard and Messrs. SITGREAVES, Gallatin, and KITTERA, one, and this is the second time a vote has been for a reference to the Secretary of the Treasury, obtained in her favor, which has afterwards been Mr. Coir suggested the propriety of its lying on reversed.] the table till 10-morrow, as he recollected the Sec- The committee rose, reported their agreement retary of the Treasury had already made a report to the three resolutions, and had leave to sit again. upon the subject, which was referred to the Com- The House took up the two first, agreed to them, mittee of Commerce and Manufactures, but he and directed the Committee of Claims to bring in did not know whether or not that committee had a bill or bills accordingly. When the third resoreported. He wished time to inquire. Agreed lution came to be considered, the yeas and pays to.

were called for, and its adoption was strongly opMr. Thatcher said, that on the 20th of Janu- posed by Messrs. HARPER, Nicholas, and Bayary, 1793. a petition was presented from Tobias Ard, on the ground of its throwing open a door to Lord, and others, praying leave to erect a pier in every claim which had heretofore been determined Kennebunk river, that an act had been passed au- as barred, as cutting up by the root all the acts of thorizing the erection of said pier, under such limitation ; that it was also setting aside these regulations as should be determined by a law of laws in the most objectionable way, by inviting the State. He had now received the law which every person, who had an unsatisfied claim, 10 had been passed, which he had laid before the petition Congress for relief, which would of course House. The law, and papers accompanying it, engage much of their time. If the acts were to were referred to the Committee of Commerce and be set aside, it would be much better and less exManufactures.

pensive therefore to authorize the proper departNORTHWESTERN LANDS.

ment to settle these claims, than that the time of Mr. Davis said a petition had been this morn- the House should be engaged in investigating and ing presented, and he had had others sent to him settling them. to present on the subject of the Northwestern On the other hand, its adoption was advocated Territory lands. He thought something might be by Messrs. GALLATIN and T. CLAIBORNE. This done on this business, which would not only an- was stated as a hard case; that this determination swer the wishes of settlers, but might also be ben- would not open the acts of limitation to any but eficial to the United States. For this purpose he such as Congress might deem extremely hard proposed a resolution, which he wished to be re-cases; that it would give the Treasury no power ferred to the committee appointed on this subject, whatever to settle any claim: the power, thereproposing certain advantages to settlers in that fore, could not be abused, except they themselves Territory; which was agreed to.

abused it; that whatever policy there might be in

acts of limitation, they were certainly liable to ACT OF LIMITATION.

strong objections; they knew they were honoraMr. Gallatin moved that the unfinished busi- bly indebted a sum of money, but they determine ness should be postponed, in order to take up the not to pay it, merely because the paying it might report of the Committee of Claims on the expe- render the accounts at the Treasury less simple, diency orinexpediency of excepting certain claims or because they would be liable to pay more than from the operation of the act of limitation; which, is convenient. This policy might be justifiable, being agreed to, the House resolved itself into a but it bore very hard upon individual sufferers

. It Committee of the Whole on that subject; and was argued, therefore, that without opening the agreed to a resolution proposing to suspend, for a acts generally, when a strong, unequivocal claim limited time, the law barring Loan Office certifi- was presented, which was in the hands of the cates, final settlements, and indents of interest; original holder, and where, of course, there could and also to a resolution in the form recommended be no possibility of fraud, relief might and ought by the Secretary of the Treasury, viz:

to be granted. " Resolved, That a time be limited by law, after Mr. J. Williams was an enemy to acts of limiwhich credits on the books of the Treasury for transac- Itation, as he thought a debt once due must always

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