« AnteriorContinuar »
troubles incident to the Indian depredations upon the plains, he is aware that last year a large portion of the population of the Territory of Colorado left there for the eastern States and for other Territories of the West, and that the line of communication was constantly broken, at one time for several weeks, in consequence of the Indian depredations, so that the mails for weeks at a time were not carried to all parts of the Territory. Hence the test which the gentleman seeks to introduce is not a fair one. I take it, sir, that the voting population is a better and fairer test; and I believe that the number of voters at the last election in that Territory shows a population equal to that of some districts in the eastern States that now have Representatives in Congress, and we all know that they have a larger voting population than many congressional district in the southern States.
establish a new principle in the admission of States into this Union, negativing, so far as I could in the enabling acts, the old idea of State rights; the other to secure the vote of three more States, in case the election of President and Vice President in the year 1864 should come to the House of Representatives.
At the time those enabling acts were passed it was not thought expedient by the party to which I belong to prescribe the qualification of electors in the constitutions of the States which were authorized to be organized and admitted into the Union. The people of Colorado, in the constitution which they formed in pursuance of that enabling act, and which constitution they rejected, prescribed that none but white persons should be electors within the State. The State of Nevada, having accepted the conditions prescribed by Congress, was admitted into the Union, with a provision in her constitution precisely like the one now objected to in the constitution of Colorado. At that time the people of Colorado voted against the proposition to become a State.
But last year the people of Colorado of all parties called upon the several committees representing the State and the anti-State organizations, and also the Democratic organization, and asked them to make an independent move for a State organization. While I was in the Territory they agreed upon a plan for electing delegates to a constitutional convention. In pursuance of the joint calls of those committees elections were held in that Territory, and a convention assembled which adopted a constitution in strict compliance with the provisions of the enabling act. That constitution was submitted to the people of Colorado, and by them adopted.
Mr. FINCK. Will my colleague yield to me for a question?
Mr. ASHLEY, of Ohio. Yes, sir.
Mr. FINCK. I desire to ask my colleague what was the total number of votes at the election to which he refers.
Mr. ASHLEY, of Ohio. According to a pamphlet which I hold in my hand, 7,166 was the total vote.
Mr. FINCK. Can my colleague advise the House what is the present population of Colo
Mr. ASHLEY, of Ohio. I had here a statement from the Legislature of Colorado, estimating the present population of the Territory at fifty thousand.
Mr. FINCK. Can my colleague refer to any census taken in that Territory?
Mr. ASHLEY, of Ohio. No, sir, I cannot. The total vote at the recent election for Congressman was 7,557. If the gentleman will refer to the election returns for the eastern or southern States, he will find that this is a larger number of votes than is cast in several of the Representative districts in a number of the southern States. It is a larger vote than that cast in the State of Delaware or the State of Florida.
Mr. FINCK. Let me ask my colleague whether the number of voters in the Territories is not greater in proportion to the population
than in the States.
Mr. ASHLEY, of Ohio. As a rule, Mr. Speaker, that is true of all newly settled Territories. But Colorado has been a Territory for some years. I have myself visited the Territory twice-once three years ago last fall, and again this year and I can state that the female population is largely increasing, as also the junior population; so that the disparity between the actual population of a congressional district in one of the eastern or southern States and that of Colorado is not so great as my colleague would have the House suppose.
Mr. CHANLER. I desire to ask the gentleman from Ohio whether he is not aware that according to the returns made by the Post Office Department, which furnish a good test of population, the number of letters distributed in that Territory has within the last few years been largely and constantly decreasing.
Mr. ASHLEY, of Ohio. Mr. Speaker, if the gentleman is at all conversant with the
Mr. ROSS. As the gentleman has visited that Territory, I ask him to state what, in his judgment, is the population of that Territory, leaving out those who are merely temporarily there for the purpose of mining.
Mr. ASHLEY, of Ohio. Well, Mr. Speaker, I am not able to state, because I was not in the southern part of the Territory which is inhabited by the Mexican population. But I was in all the mining districts, and from the best information which I could obtain, I think the population was more than forty thousand. But it is constantly increasing. The population of Colorado is to-day twice as great as that of the State of Florida at the time of its admission. Its population is greater than that of the State of Arkansas when it was admitted, or the State of Oregon at the time of its admission.
Mr. FINCK. Let me suggest to my friend that when those States were admitted the ratio of representation was much less than at present.
Mr. ASHLEY, of Ohio. That is true. But, sir, the number of votes is the best test; and if there are on an average as many voters for the State ticket or for members of Congress as are cast in other districts having Representatives, the gentleman should not interpose that objection. I addition to this, we all know how much faster the mining States and Territories increase in population than the agricultural States. Colorado furnished three regiments for the war, has furnished a large emigration to Montana, Idaho, and other mining Territories, and yet her population is steadily and surely increasing, and I do not hesitate to predict that by the census of 1870 she will have a population of two hundred thousand people. So far as population is concerned, however, Congress having proposed to these people to become a State, I think, without violating any great principle, we ought to vote for their admission. I desire also to vote for their admission because I believe in the principle of organizing State governments at the earliest day practicable in every one of the Territories.
Mr. ROSS. Is it not objectionable in excluding negroes from suffrage?
Mr. ASHLEY, of Ohio. I am compelled to vote for many propositions objectionable to me as an individual. I expect to vote for the report of the committee of fifteen.
Mr. ROSS. Why?
Mr. ASHLEY, of Ohio. Because it ignores the great body of loyal men in the South who during the rebellion were our friends and fought to preserve the Union, while it practically leaves the government of the late rebel States in the hands of those who attempted to destroy this nation. I intend to go for it, however, because I believe it is the best proposition we can get, and because it reflects the aggregate sentiment of the country. By passing this bill we but affirm the principle of that report. We leave the question of suffrage to the people of Colorado, and I would rather intrust that question or any other to the loyal people of Colorado, who furnished three regiments of as good soldiers as ever entered the Union Army, than to commit the question of enfranchising the black man to the white electors of the late rebel
States, as we propose to do in the proposition
submitted by the joint committee of fifteen. I have no doubt that the loyal people of Colorado will enfranchise her blacks long before the blacks are enfranchised by the spirits who will control the late rebel States, if the proposition of the committee becomes law.
But I do not want to take up the time of the House in the discussion of this question, and therefore demand the previous question.
Mr. CHAVES. I ask to present the following amendment:
SEC. 3. And be it further enacted, That said State of Colorado shall consist of all the territory included within the following boundaries, to wit: commencing at a point formed by the intersection of the thirtyeighth degree of north latitude with the twenty-fifth degree of longitude west from Washington; extending thence due west along said thirty-eighth degree of north latitude to a point formed by its intersection with the thirty-second degree of longitude west from Washington; thence due north along said thirtysecond degree of west longitude to a point formed by its intersection with the forty-first degree of north latitude; thence due east along said forty-first degree of north latitude to a point formed by its intersection with the twenty-fifth degree of longitude west from Washington; thence due south along said twentyfifth degree of west longitude.
Mr. ASHLEY, of Ohio. I cannot yield for that amendment.
Mr. WASHBURNE, of Illinois. I ask the gentleman to yield to the following amendment:
Provided, That this act shall not take effect until the said State of Colorado shall so amend the constitution thereof as to strike out the word "white" as a qualification of voting.
Mr. ASHLEY, of Ohio. I will let that amendment in and then call for the previous question.
The previous question was seconded and the main question ordered.
Mr. LE BLOND demanded the yeas and nays on the amendment.
The yeas and nays were ordered.
The question was taken; and it was decided in the negative-yeas 37, nays 95, not voting 51; as follows:
YEAS-Messrs. Alley, Allison, Ames, Baldwin, Baxter, Blaine, Boutwell, Brandegee, Broomall, Dixon, Donnelly, Eliot, Garfield, Grinnell, Hotchkiss, Asahel W. Hubbard, Jenckes, Julian, Kasson, Kelley, Kelso, Loan, Lynch, McClurg, McRuer, Morrill, Paine, Perham, Pike, Alexander H. Rice, John H.. Rice, Stevens, Elihu B. Washburne, Williams, James F. Wilson, Windom, and Woodbridge-37. NAYS-Messrs. Ancona, Anderson, Delos R. Ash
ley, James M. Ashley, Baker, Banks, Barker, Bea
man, Boyer, Bromwell, Buckland, Bundy, Chanler, Reader W. Clarke, Coffroth, Conkling, Cullom, Darling, Dawson, Defrees, Delano, Deming, Denison, Driggs, Dumont, Eckley, Eldridge, Farquhar, Ferry, Finck, Glossbrenner, Grider, Griswold, Aaron Harding, Abner C. Harding, Harris, Hart, Henderson. Holmes, Chester D. Hubbard, James R. Hubbell, James Humphrey, Ingersoll, Ketcham, Kuykendall, Laflin, Latham, George V. Lawrence, William Lawrence, Le Blond, Longyear, Marshall, Marston, McCullough, Mercur, Miller, Moorhead, Moulton, Myers, Newell, O'Neill, Orth, Patterson, Plants, Raymond, Ritter, Rollins, Ross, Rousseau, Sawyer, Schenck, Shanklin, Shellabarger. Smith, Spalding. Strouse, Taylor, Francis Thomas, John L. Thomas, Thornton, Trowbridge, Upson, Burt Van Horn, Robert T. Van Horn, Warner, Henry D. Washburn, Welker, Whaley, Winfield, and Wright-95.
NOT VOTING-Messrs. Sidney Clarke, Cobb, Cook Culver, Davis, Dawes, Dodge, Eggleston, Farnsworth, Goodyear, Hale, Hayes, Higby, Hill, Hogan, Hooper, Demas Hubbard, John H. Hubbard, Edwin N. Hubbell, Hulburd, James M. Humphrey, Johnson, Jones, Kerr, Marvin, McIndoe, McKee, Morris, Niblack, Nicholson, Noell, Phelps, Pomeroy, Price, Radford, Samuel J. Randall, William H. Randall, Rogers, Scofield, Sitgreaves, Sloan, Starr, Stilwell. Taber, Thayer, Trimble, Van Aernam, Ward, William B. Washburn, Wentworth, and Stephen F. Wilson-51. So the amendment was rejected.
The bill was ordered to be engrossed and read a third time; and being engrossed, it was accordingly read the third time.
Mr. LE BLOND demanded the yeas and nays on the passage of the bill.
The yeas and nays were ordered.
The question was taken; and it was decided in the affirmative-yeas 81, nays 57, not voting 45-as follows:
YEAS-Messrs. Ames, Anderson, Delos R.Ashley, James M. Ashley, Baker, Banks, Barker, Beaman, Benjamin, Bidwell, Bingham, Blow, Brandegee, Bromwell, Buckland, Bundy, Reader W. Clarke, Sidney Clarke, Cobb, Conkling, Cullom, Defrees Deming, Dixon, Dodge, Donnelly, Driggs, Dumont Eckley, Farquhar, Ferry, Garfield, Grinnell, Abner C. Harding, Hart, Henderson, Holmes, Hotchkiss, Asahel W. Hubbard, Chester D. Hubbard, James R
flubbell, Ingersoll, Jenckes, Kasson, Kelso, Ketch
time, and referred to the Committee on Agri-nois [Mr. HARDING] raises a new question. He
am, Laflin, Latham, George V. Lawrence, William Lawrence, Loan, Longyear, Marston, McClurg, McKee, Mercur, Miller, Moorhead, Moulton, Myers, O'Neill, Orth, Patterson, Plants, Alexander H. Rice, Rollins, Sawyer, Schenck, Shellabarger, Smith, Spalding, Francis Thomas, Trowbridge, Upson, Van Aernam, Burt Van Horn, Robert T. Van Horn, Warner, Welker, Whaley, and Williams-81.
NAYS-Messrs. Allison, Alley, Ancona, Baxter, Bergen, Blaine, Boutwell, Boyer, Broomall, Chanler, Coffroth, Darling, Dawson, Denison, Eldridge, Eliot, Finck, Glossbrenner, Grider, Griswold, Aaron Harding, Harris, Higby, James Humphrey, Julian, Kelley, Kuykendall, LeBond, Lynch, Marshall, McCullough, McRuer, Morrill, Morris, Newell, Niblack, Paine, Perham, Pike, Raymond, John H. Rice, Ritter, Ross, Rousseau, Shanklin, Stevens, Stilwell, Strouse, Taylor, Thornton, Elihu B. Washburne, Henry D. Washburn, James F. Wilson, Windom, Winfield, Woodbridge, and Wright-57.
NOT VOTING-Messrs. Baldwin, Cook, Culver, Davis, Dawes, Delano, Eggleston, Farnsworth, Goodyear, Hale, Hayes, Hill, Hogan, Hooper, Demas Hubbard, John H. Hubbard, Edwin N. Hubbell, Hulburd, James M. Humphrey, Johnson, Jones, Kerr, Marvin, McIndoe, Nicholson, Noell, Phelps, Pomeroy, Price, Radford, Samuel J. Randall, William H. Randall, Rogers, Scofield, Sitgreaves, Sloan, Starr, Taber, Thayer, John L. Thomas, Trimble, Ward, William B. Washburn, Wentworth, and Stephen F. Wilson-45. So the bill was passed.
Mr. ASHLEY, of Ohio, moved to reconsider the vote by which the bill was passed; and also moved to lay that motion on the table.
The latter motion was agreed to.
MESSAGE FROM THE SENATE.
A message was received from the Senate, by Mr. McDONALD, its Chief Clerk, requesting the return of the bill making appropriations for the service of the Post Office Department for the fiscal year ending the 30th of June, 1867, and for other purposes.
Mr. GARFIELD. I move that it be returned. The SPEAKER. It has been referred to the Committee on Appropriations, and it will be necessary to reconsider that reference. If there be no objection it will be regarded as reconsidered, and the order will be made by the House to return the bill to the Senate in compliance with the request.
LEAVE OF ABSENCE.
Mr. LAFLIN. I ask indefinite leave of absence for my colleague, Mr. MARVIN, who has been called away by the death of a brother.
MESSAGE FROM THE PRESIDENT.
The following message in writing was received from the President of the United States by Mr. EDWARD COOPER, his Private Secretary; which was read, laid on the table, and ordered to be printed:
To the House of Representatives:
In reply to the resolution of the House of Representatives of the 23d ultimo, I transmit a report from the Secretary of War, from which it will be perceived that it is not deemed compatible with the public interests to communicate to the House the report made by General Smith and Hon. James T. Brady, of their investigations at New Orleans, Louisiana. ANDREW JOHNSON. WASHINGTON, D. C., May 2, 1866.
RELIEF OF CONTRACTORS.
The next business on the Speaker's table was Senate bill No. 220, for the relief of certain contractors for the construction of vesselsof-war and steam machinery; which was read a first and second time.
COLLECTION OF PLANTS.
The next business on the Speaker's table was joint resolution of the Senate No. 76, providing for the acceptance of a collection of plants tendered to the United States by Frederick Pech; which was read a first and second
Mr. RICE, of Massachusetts. I move to refer it to the Committee on Naval Affairs. Mr. WASHBURNE, of Illinois. I move to amend by referring it to the Committee of Claims.
The amendment was agreed to; and the motion, as amended, was also agreed to.
Mr. WASHBURNE, of Illinois, moved to reconsider the vote by which the bill was referred; and also moved to lay that motion on the table.
The latter motion was agreed to.
Mr. WASHBURNE, of Illinois. I raise the point of order that, as this is a bill providing for one bridge and the amendment proposed is for another, the amendment is not in order. The SPEAKER. The Chair overrules the point of order. The Chair finds from a hasty examination of the bill that it provides for three bridges across the Mississippi river, and the Chair thinks that this amendment is germane.
Mr. KASSON. I now yield the floor to my
another amendment to the bill, in order that it
The next business on the Speaker's table was Senate bill No. 277, for the relief of William Cook; which was read a first and second
Mr. KASSON. I have no objection.
time, and referred to the Committee for the read, and then we can see whether we object
District of Columbia.
BRIDGES OVER THE MISSISSIPPI.
The next business on the Speaker's table was Senate bill No. 236, to authorize the construction of certain bridges, and to establish them as post roads; which was read a first
and second time.
Mr. KASSON. I move to refer the bill to the Committee on the Post Office and Post Roads, and I ask, at the same time, to offer this amendment and have it take the same reference:
And be it further enacted, That it shall be lawful for any railroad corporation, whose road has been completed to the Mississippi river, and connects with a railroad on the opposite side thereof, having first obtained authority therefor from the States of Illinois and Iowa, to construct a railroad bridge across said river upon the same terms, in the same manner, under the same restrictions, and with the same privileges as is provided for in this act in relation to the bridge at Quincy, Illinois.
The Clerk read the proposed amendment, as follows:
And that the Keokuk and Hamilton Mississippi
Bridge Company be, and is hereby, authorized to
There being no objection, the amendment
Mr. HARDING, of Illinois. While I am in favor of these amendments, and will vote for them on the proper occasion, I am opposed to gentlemen coming in here now and riding down a bill which has been maturely considered in the Senate by the friends of the bridges at Quincy and Burlington. This measure was considered in the Senate by a very able committee, and a basis was laid by them upon which the Senate and the House can act intelligently. I do object to having that bill laid aside in some committee in order to give these gentlemen an opportunity to provide a substitute
It will be a very easy thing for them to bring in their bills and pass them after the principle of bridging the Mississippi river shall have been established by the passage of this bill. While I am as much in favor of the gentleman's proposition as he is, I do hope his course will not be approved by the House.
Mr. KASSON. The gentleman from Illi
But, sir, the gentleman is certainly wrong in saying that the object is to "ride down" this measure of which he is the friend. He forgets that forty miles north of his own city there is a city in Iowa of equal importance, with roads approaching it on both sides, and with what Quincy has not, a solid rock bottom in the river, which we have already appropriated money to blast out, so as to let boats through.
Now, I say, that when the proposition is to construct a bridge at a point like that, made by nature for it, the gentleman should not say that the intention is to "ride down" the bill. On the contrary, that amendment will strengthen his measure.
A word more. The gentleman has spoken of establishing the principle of bridging the Mississippi river. Why, sir, that principle has been established already, and there are two bridges now constructed above the points at which this bill authorizes the construction of bridges.
Mr. WASHBURNE, of Illinois. Yes, and which obstruct navigation to the amount of millions of dollars a year.
Mr. KASSON. I would be much obliged if my friend from Illinois would allow me to speak when I have the floor, and when I am through I will yield with pleasure to him.
I say that the principle has been established, and that the interests of the States on both sides of the river require the construction of bridges occasionally across that river; and it is perfectly well settled that those bridges can be constructed so as not to obstruct navigation. I should certainly oppose any obstruction of navigation.
Mr. WILSON, of Iowa. I desire to remind the gentleman from Illinois, [Mr. HARDING,] who is opposed to these amendments, that this bill was originally introduced to authorize the construction of a bridge at St. Louis. It was amended in the Senate so as to provide for a bridge at Quincy and, I believe, another at Hannibal.
Mr. HARDING, of Illinois. The gentleman is wrong in that.
Mr. WILSON, of Iowa. It was also amended so as to authorize the construction of a bridge at Burlington, Iowa. Now, we simply desire that other points of quite as much importance as some of those provided for shall have the privilege of constructing bridges across the Mis
The at Keokuk are quite as important as those at Quiney. The railway connections there are quite as imDubuque. They are all important; and the portant as those at Burlington; and so it is at break caused by the river in the connections of those lines is very serious.
Now, we ask that this bill, accompanied by these amendments, shall go to the Committee on the Post Office and Post Roads, a committee appointed to consider measures of this character, in order that that committee may determine whether it is not as important to have these other points provided for as those already provided for by the bill.
Mr. WASHBURNE, of Illinois. I desire the calm attention of the House for one moment in regard to this subject of bridging the Missis sippi river. To us in the valley of the Mississippi this is certainly one of the most important questions before Congress. I may say that we are all in favor of bridging the Mississippi river, if it can be done without any material obstruction to its navigation. I am in favor of it, and I believe all the people are in favor of it; and both interests must yield a little.
But there have already been two bridges built across the Mississippi river, and all of us who live in the Mississippi valley know that those two bridges have been almost the greatest possible obstruction to the navigation of that river, and have caused to the people of that valley
the loss of millions and millions of dollars of property. The value of the steamers that have been destroyed at Rock Island alone, I think, would amount to $1,000,000.
and fifty miles along the east bank of that river, including both rapids; and across the river into my district run four great lines of railroad which penetrate the great West beyond the Mississippi. My constituents as well as those of the gentlemen on the other side of the Mississippi are anxious to carry their business across that river to get their produce to market.
My constituents are equally interested with those of other gentlemen in maintaining an unobstructed navigation of the Mississippi. Sir, for thirty years I have fought against obstructions in the Mississippi. I fought against the construction of the bridge at Rock Island; and I have been opposed to all such bridges as would obstruct the navigation.
Now, sir, after weeks of labor, we have here a bill prepared upon the information of the ablest engineers of the country, and with the sanction of the War Department, by which it is provided that the railroad interest and those concerned in the transportation of freight by that mode of communication shall be accommodated, while the shipping interest upon the river shall also be accommodated.
Now, if we in Congress are going forward to legislate upon this subject of bridging the Mississippi, a subject of vast importance, we should legislate with great care and with great deliberation. Now, I desire to say that I am opposed to sending this bill, with the amendments which have been introduced, to the Committee on the Post Office and Post Roads, for the reason that that committee has already ordered a bill to be reported to this House to legalize the Clinton bridge and make it a post route, taking from the people of the Mississippi valley all their rights and all their remedies in that regard. That committee is already committed in favor of this subject of obstructing the navigation of the Mississippi river by these bridges, and hence I say that I do not believe that it is just and fair that this bill should go to a committee already committed in its favor.
Now, I move to refer this bill with amendments to the Committee on Commerce. It may, perhaps, be objected that the Committee on Commerce has formed its opinion on this subject. If that is so, then I will not insist upon having this bill referred to that committee. But I do insist that a subject of this vast importance should go to some committee where the subject will be considered fairly and justly, with a due regard to the interests of all parties, and not in the interest of these railroad corporations, which have for one object the damming up of that great natural highway, in order that they may compel freight to go over their lines, and thus rob the people still further. I want this question considered fairly, and by a committee that is not prejudiced on this subject,|| and that has not committed itself to any particular line of policy.
Mr. ROSS. Will the gentleman from Iowa [Mr. KASSON] permit me to offer an amend
Mr. KASSON. I will hear it read.
Mr. ROSS. It is to add the following: Provided, however, That said bridges shall not be so built as to obstruct or impair the navigation of the Mississippi river.
I am aware of the zeal with which my colleague from the Galena district [Mr. WASHBURNE] protects the navigation interests. I Mr. KASSON. I have no objection to hav-know very well that there is a very great preju ing that amendment go to the committee with dice against bridges; but I am happy to see the other propositions. that the honest sentiments of my friend have been modified, and that he publicly assents to the bridging of the river Mississippi. I beg him now to have this bill referred to a friendly committee if it must be referred at all.
Mr. WASHBURNE, of Illinois. In view of the importance of this question, I will ask that a fair committee be appointed to consider it.
Mr. KASSON. I will say that this question has already been considered with great care and deliberation in the Senate. The gentleman from Illinois [Mr. WASHBURNE] suggests that a special committee should be raised for the purpose of considering this subject. I do not like to take this subject from the jurisdiction of the committee to which it properly belongs, and have it go to another regular committee, as was first suggested by the gentleman from Illinois. I think the Post Office Committee is a competent committee to consider the question, as is also the Committee on Commerce. But in the Senate the subject went to the Post Office Committee. Its very title indicates that it should go there, and I for one will not discredit any regular committee. The only other alternative is that it should go to a special committee.
Mr. WASHBURNE, of Illinois. I am willing to withdraw my motion for a special committee, as also my suggestion that it be referred to the Committee on Commerce, and I will suggest that it should be referred to the Committee on Roads and Canals, which I am sure will prove to be an impartial committee. Mr. HARDING, of Illinois. Will the gentleman from Iowa [Mr. KASSON] yield to me for a moment?
I am in favor of the construction of a bridge at Keokuk. Those interested in that enterprise have had a committee here; and I have assisted them in their efforts to get a bill through Congress. But I do not wish that that project shall be tacked on to this bill so that the whole thing may go over to the next session. I had hoped, sir, that this bill would be referred by the House to some friendly committee that would report it back. It contains, I will state to the House, all the elements of a system of laws for the regulation of the construction of these bridges. The draw at Quincy is one hundred and sixty feet in the clear, a width far beyond that of the bridge at Rock Island, which was built without the authority of any law of Congress, and was a great obstruction. This bridge at Quincy, the proposed bridge at Burlington, and the one at Keokuk, are all unobjectionable, so far as I can judge from my investigation of the question.
Mr. KASSON. I will yield for an explanation, but I cannot yield the floor entirely.
Mr. HARDING, of Illinois. Mr. Speaker, I feel a deep interest in the subject of bridging the Mississippi. My district lies one hundred
Mr. WASHBURNE, of Illinois. I propose that it shall be referred to the Committee on Roads and Canals. I desire that it shall not be referred to the Committee on the Post Office and Post Roads.
surrender the positions which he formerly held and yield his great Mississippi fight.
Mr. WASHBURNE, of Illinois. I occupy to-day the same position I always occupied. I was always willing to have the river bridged when it could be done without materially interfereing with navigation.
Mr. GRINNELL. Mr. Speaker, it has been asserted over and over again, in and out of the House, that these bridges are nuisances and must come down. But, sir, in regard to the Rock Island bridge it has been shown that that is not an obstruction. The largest craft have, in great numbers-five or six hundred a season-passed there unobstructed; but when an old craft highly insured has run against the bridge and been destroyed, we have heard a great outcry about that bridge. It has been suspicious.
Now, sir, that bridge-I mean the Rock Island bridge-was constructed by eminent engineers, and if it is a nuisance there, it can be brought down by law. I suppose they want bridges at all these points, and I am willing that they shall have them. I am willing that this shall go to the Committee on the Post Of fice and Post Roads. It is for the interest of the other side of the river, where they have ten times the business, east and west of that on the river, that they shall have all the accommodations which nature and art both give them. The people distant to the Pacific are interested in these crossings. The railroad system of this country, and especially that west of the river, is made to yield to the natural highways of commerce. We have there established a bridge which will admit transit east and west as well as up and down the river.
Mr. KASSON. I now yield to the gentleman from Massachusetts, chairman of the Committee on the Post Office and Post Roads.
Mr. Speaker, I am very glad to hear the gentleman from Illinois [Mr. WASHBURNE]
Mr. ALLEY. I was not present and did not hear the remarks of the gentleman from Illinois, but I am informed that he reflected on the Committee on the Post Office and Post Roads, charging that it was an unfair committee and in the interest of the railroads, and that he was opposed to any reference to that committee on that ground, asking at the same time that it be referred to the Committee on Commerce, of which committee he is chairman.
Mr. GRINNELL. The gentleman is mistaken. I said that the Committee on the Post Office and Post Roads was a fair committee, and the gentleman from Illinois said nothing reflecting on the committee at all.
Mr. ALLEY. I ask the gentleman from Illinois whether he reflected on that committee. Mr. WASHBURNE, of Illinois. I made no reflection on any committee. I trust I understand the rules too well for that. I stated the action of that committee and that it tended to strike down the interests of eight million people of the agricultural districts.
Mr. ALLEY. I understood the gentleman to have reflected on the action of the committee. I must have misapprehended, or rather I must have been misinformed, in reference to the position of the gentleman from Illinois. I understood that he reflected on the Committee on the Post Office and Post Roads, charging them with unfairness. He disclaims any reflection on that committee, and of course I have nothing further to say.
In regard to the question before that committee in which that gentleman is interested, no action has been taken and no report made, and of course the gentleman can have no complaint.
Mr. KASSON. I yield to the gentleman from Missouri.
Mr. BLOW. I desire to state there are two Senate bills before the House providing for the construction of bridges across the Mississippi river. The city of St. Louis, its Chamber of Commerce, and its people, have united in declaring that no obstruction should be made to the navigation of a stream upon which floats the greatest commerce of the New World. It is therefore provided in reference to the bridge
at that point so that any steamer may pass by that city on its way up the river without any detriment whatever. But, sir, if we pass this bill there will be a series of obstructions from the city of St. Louis to the falls of St. Anthony.
The bridge the gentleman has spoken of is one of the greatest obstructions, if not an absolute nuisance, causing extra insurance to be demanded by the insurance companies, and the loss of thousands of dollars' worth of valuable property annually. In addition to the natural obstructions it imposes a burden upon the cities on that stream which they are not able to bear. In adverse winds boats have had to remain for days at Rock Island. By this bill you propose to obstruct it at Quincy, Hannibal, Keokuk, and I do not know how many other places.
Mr. STEVENS. I offer the following amendment:
Mr. WILSON, of Iowa. Has the gentleman examined the provisions of this bill?
Mr. BLOW. I have. They call for a draw of one hundred and sixty-five feet, leaving only a channel hardly the width of the vessels themselves.
Mr. KASSON. I ask as a point of order whether it is proper to discuss the merits of the bill on the motion to refer. Mr.WASHBURNE, of Illinois. That brings up the whole question.
Mr. KASSON. I presume the proper time for this debate will be when the bill has been returned from the committee. I understand it has been prepared with unusual care and on consultation with eminent engineers. We understand uniformly that a bridge near the city and within the district of a member of Congress is always large enough and high enough, in the opinion of that member, but that a bridge above or below obstructs commerce, by being too small, and therefore ought not to be allowed to remain.
I have submitted my amendment with special reference to the wants of central and western Iowa. We want a double outlet for our products, the unobstructed option of the Chicago and St. Louis markets, and competition between railroads for freight. With this bridge at Keokuk we can send our products to St. Louis without breaking bulk. From Des Moines as a common center there will be two routes open to Chicago, and one, if not two, to St. Louis, and all without the serious obstruction of breaking bulk at the river, with its heavy accompanying charges.
With these remarks I simply now desire, as I am pressed all around, and as there are other measures waiting that are urgent, to ask the previous question on the motion to refer this to the committee. The whole subject will be open for debate when it comes back.
Mr. GRISWOLD. I desire to ask the gentleman whether by the provisions of this charter the bridge company would be liable for damages growing out of obstruction of the navigation.
Mr. KASSON. Certainly they are if the bridge is improperly constructed, liable at common law.
Mr. BENJAMIN. They would not, if it is built according to the provisions of the bill.
Mr. KASSON. I have no sort of objection to the fullest debate, but I understand it to be the wish of the House not to discuss it now.
That the time for commencing and completing the Northern Pacific railroad and all its several sections is extended for the term of two years.
Mr. ROSS. Is that amendment germane to the subject? I raise the question of order.
The SPEAKER. The Chair thinks it is in order. It relates to the building of railroads across the continent. It is a question for the House whether it will concur in the amendment.
Mr. STEVENS. The object of the amendment is simply this: the original resolution proposed to extend the time for the completion of the southern branch of the Union Pacific railroad for a few months according to the recommendation of the message of the President. The time had expired. One and a half section had been finished, but not within the time required by law by a few days. The message of the President informed us that unless we extended the time the subsidy could not be granted. Two months are asked for. The amendment I offer is to give further time, but it proposes no advantage except the extension of the time.
SOLDIERS' AND SAILORS' ORPHAN HOME. Mr. WASHBURNE, of Illinois. I desire to make a statement. Several patriotic ladies have sent me a bill to incorporate the National Soldiers' and Sailors' Orphan Home in the District of Columbia. It is a very worthy object. I find among the managers the names of Mrs. General Sherman, Mrs. Carlile, Mrs. Todd, Mrs. Smith, Mrs. Hale, Mrs. General Curtis, Mrs. General Scofield, and a great many others; and I venture to bring the matter to the consideration of the House. I have looked over this bill, and if the House, after hearing it read, sees nothing objectionable in it, I will ask to have it passed.
The bill was read.
Mr. ROSS. I would inquire of my colleague if this bill does not take the custody of the property of these orphans out of the hands of their guardians, and give the control of it to this corporation.
I ask for the reading of
Mr. STEVENS. the sixth section. The Clerk read the section, as follows: SEC. 6. And be it further enacted, That no child shall ever be bound out from this institution.
Mr. STEVENS. I do not think that is practicable. If the institution is to raise them up in idleness, and never bind them out, it is contrary to all precedents that I ever heard of. I move to strike that section out, so as to leave it discretionary with the managers of the institution.
The motion was agreed to, and the sixth section was stricken out.
and property of the children out of the hands of legally appointed guardians, and give it to this corporation.
Mr. ROSS. I again ask my colleague if this bill does not take the custody of the persons
Mr. WASHBURNE, of Illinois. I do not think that that is the construction of the bill. Mr. ROSS. It appears to me from the reading of it that it is.
Mr. WASHBURNE, of Illinois. If the gentleman desires to amend it in that respect he can do so.
Mr. GARFIELD. I suggest to the gentleman from Illinois [Mr. Ross] that he offer an amendment providing that the bill shall not be construed in that way.
The SPEAKER. The section referred to by the gentleman from Illinois [Mr. Ross] will be read.
The Clerk read as follows:
SEC. 8. And be it further enacted, That upon any minor child being removed from or leaving this institution, as provided in the preceding section, and there being due to such minor child any pension or back pay from the United States Government, the directors of the institution shall retain control of such back pay or bounty until such child attains the ago of majority, paying to such child during minority only the interest thereof, or such further sum as, in the discretion of the board, may be necessary for the support and maintenance of such minor.
Mr. WASHBURNE, of Illinois. That is a very good provision. I think no one can ob ject to it. I think the House had better pass the bill.
Mr. HARDING, of Illinois. I wish my colleague would explain why bounty money be longing to these orphans is safer in the hands of the directors of this corporation than in those of the agents which the law provides. Guardians are safer depositaries than these directors, who may or may not be good. They are good now, no doubt. But the institution may degenerate, as many things do in this world.'
Mr. WASHBURNE, of Illinois. My colleague entirely misapprehends the character of this bill. It is certainly for one of the most laudable objects to which our attention could possibly be called, and I think the provision to which the gentleman alludes is one of the best provisions of the bill. It provides that the funds of these orphans shall be kept by the institution, and the interest paid to them, until they come of age. The bill is designed for the purpose of protecting, educating, and caring for the orphans of soldiers and sailors.
Mr. HARDING, of Illinois. I move to strike out that eighth section.
would not be better to refer this bill to the Mr. ROSS. I suggest to my colleague if it Judiciary Committee or some other committee that will examine it. I have no objection to the object of the bill, but I think it had better be referred and examined.
Mr. HARDING, of Illinois. I have no objection to its reference.
Mr. WASHBURNE, of Illinois. If the House desires it
Mr. HARDING, of Illinois. I have the floor now.
Mr. WASHBURNE, of Illinois. Then let the gentleman take charge of the bill.
Mr. HARDING, of Illinois. I will take charge of it if the gentleman wants me to.
We have a system of laws throughout the United States by which the interest of the minor children of our dead soldiers is secured. The Government itself which makes these grants to these orphans provides a place where this money shall be cared for and kept safe and secure. But, overriding all that system, it is proposed to provide here by a general sweeping clause that whenever the money of these orphans gets into the hands of this corporation, the custody of the funds shall be in the management of these directors. To that I am opposed. It is too large and sweeping a provision. I do not understand how the funds of these orphans will ever get into the possession of these directors. I shall move to refer the bill, unless my colleague will consent to strike out this section.
Mr. WASHBURNE, of Illinois. The gen tleman can make his motion, and the House can do what they please about it.
Mr. DELANO. Is it in order to move to refer the bill to the Committee on the Judiciary?
It is in order.
Mr. DELANO. I make that motion, then, in entire friendship to the measure, and simply because I do not think it is likely to be perfected in this mode.. And I move that the committee have leave to report it at any time. Mr. HARDING, of Illinois. Then I withdraw my motion to strike out the eighth section. Mr. WASHBURNE, of Illinois. I assent to the motion of the gentleman from Ohio. I have no desire to press this bill against the objection of a single man here.
Mr. DELANO. I have no objection to the bill. My object is to get it through.
The motion was agreed to.
So the bill was referred to the Committee on the Judiciary, with leave to report at any time.
MESSAGE FROM THE SENATE.
A message from the Senate, by Mr. WILLIAM J. McDONALD, its Chief Clerk, informed the House that the Senate had agreed to the amendments of the House to the bill of the Senate No. 155, concerning the boundaries of the State of Nevada.
The message further informed the House that the Senate had passed a concurrent reso lution providing that the standing Committees of the two Houses on Public Buildings and Grounds be instructed to inquire and report what further provision, if any, should be made for the accommodation of the State Department, in which the concurrence of the House was requested.
The message further informed the House that the Senate had passed bills and a joint resolution of the following titles; in which the concurrence of the House was requested:
An act (S. No. 99) granting lands to the State of Oregon to aid in the construction of a military road from Albany, Oregon, to the eastern boundary of said State;
An act (S. No. 230) to reimburse the State of West Virginia for moneys expended for the United States in enrolling, equipping, and paying military forces to aid in suppressing the rebellion;
An act (S. No. 274) for the relief of John Ericsson; and
Joint resolution (S. R. No. 71) referring the petition and papers in the case of Joseph Nock to the Court of Claims..
ESTABLISHMENT OF POST ROUTES.
Mr. LYNCH, by unanimous consent, introduced a bill to establish certain post routes; which was read a first and second time, and referred to the Committee on the Post Office and Post Roads.
WEST VIRGINIA WAR CLAIMS,
Mr. HUBBARD, of West Virginia. I ask consent of the House to take from the Speaker's table, and have referred to the Committee on Appropriations, Senate bill No. 230, to reimburse the State of West Virginia for moneys expended for the United States in enrolling, equipping, and paying military forces to aid in suppressing the rebellion.
Mr. WASHBURNE, of Illinois. I object, unless it be to refer to the Committee of Claims. Mr. HUBBARD, of West Virginia. It makes a specific appropriation, and therefore should go to the Committee on Appropriations,
Mr. WASHBURNE, of Illinois. I think it is high time this question of jurisdiction over bills of this character should be determined by this House. The Committee on Appropriations has no right to consider these bills, but they should go to the Committee of Claims. The SPEAKER. As objection is made the bill will not be taken up now.
Mr. ASHLEY, of Ohio. I understand that the gentleman from Kentucky [Mr. HARDING] withdraws the objection he made some time since to allowing the Committee on Territories to have an hour for the consideration of their business after the morning hour of to-morrow shall have been concluded.
Mr. DEMING. I renew the objection.
WAGON ROAD IN DAKOTA TERRITORY. Mr. BURLEIGH. I ask unanimous consent to have the following preamble and resolution considered at this time:
Whereas an act of Congress was passed March 3, 1865, entitled "An act to provide for the construction of certain wagon roads in the Territories of Idaho, Montana, Dakota, and Nebraska;" and whereas by said act the sum of $20,000 was appropriated for the construction of a wagon road from a point at or near the mouth of the Big Sioux river, via Yancton, Dakota Territory, to a point at or near the mouth of the Big Cheyenne river, thence up said river to its main fork, thence up the north fork to a point of intersection with the road from Niobrara: and whereas the work on said wagon road is reported to have been commenced and far advanced in 1865, by orders from the Secretary of the Interior, during the prosecution of which work treaties are claimed to have been made with the Indian tribes occupying the country through which said road is located, by which the right of way was secured to the United States; and whereas the Secretary of the Interior is represented to have ordered a suspension of work upon said Cheyenne road, and required the superintendent having charge of the construction of the same, to turn over all of the stock, implements, and money appropriated and purchased for the said road to the superintendent of the Niobrara road, whereby the opening and construction of the Cheyenne road are prevented. to the great injury of the Territory of Dakota: Therefore,
Resolved, That the Secretary of the Interior be requested to inform this House whether the work on the said road has been arrested or interrupted by his orders, and if so, for what reason the same has been done; whether any of the moneys appropriated thereto have been diverted to the uses of the Niobrara or any other road mentioned in said act, with the authority, if any in that case, for said diversion.
Mr. GRINNELL. Before determining whether I shall object to the introduction of this resolution at this time, I would inquire of the gentleman whether he has sought the information he asks at the Department of the Interior, and if he has been unable to obtain
Mr. BURLEIGH. I will say that two years ago an appropriation was made for the construction of this wagon road. Since that time it is said that treaties have been made with the Indians along the line of the road, and it is said that the Government has secured the right of way for the road along there. I now understand that since those treaties have been made orders have been issued to suspend work upon this road, upon the ground that the Indians will not allow it to proceed. Now, I want to know whether there is anything in those treaties, or whether they are mere shams.
I have applied, but have not been able to obtain the information at the Interior Department, and I have introduced this resolution in order to ascertain the facts in the case. Mr. HUBBARD, of Iowa. I object.
FREDERICK COUNTY, VIRGINIA.
On motion of Mr. LAWRENCE, of Ohio, the Committee on the Judiciary were discharged from the further consideration of the petition of citizens of Frederick county, Virginia, asking that that county be attached to the State of West Virginia; and the same was laid the table. upon
Mr. GRISWOLD. I ask unanimous consent to take from the Speaker's table, for reference to the Committee on Naval Affairs, Senate bill No. 274, for the relief of John Ericsson.
Mr. WASHBURNE, of Illinois. I ask that the bill be read.
The bill was accordingly read. It directs Ericsson the sum of $13,930, in full for his the Secretary of the Treasury to pay to John services in planning the United States war steamer Princeton, and in planning and superintending the construction of the machinery for the same.
Mr. WASHBURNE, of Illinois. I have no objection to its reference. It contains an appropriation and will have to go to the Committee of the Whole, anyhow, when it shall be reported from that committee.
The bill was taken from the Speaker's table, read a first and second time, and referred to the Committee on Naval Affairs.
And then, on motion of Mr. WASHBURNE, of Illinois, (at four o'clock and ten minutes p. m.,) the House adjourned.
The following petitions, &c., were presented under the rule and referred to the appropriate committees:* By Mr. BEAMAN: The claim of Henry P. Sanger, for services rendered as book-keeper and teller in the office of H. K. Sanger, late United States depositary. By Mr. BROMWELL: The petition of Thomas A. Cosgrove, and others, praying for a law regulating insurance.
By Mr. BROOMALL: The petition of Dr. J. A. Meredith, asking that certain medicines be exempt from taxation.
By Mr. FERRY: The memorial of J. C. Lewis, and 16 others, citizens of Washington, praying for the passage of a law regulating inter-State insurances.
By Mr. GLOSSBRENNER: The petition of Arthur W. Farquhar, of York county, Pennsylvania, praying compensation for certain merchandise furnished to the Government in 1864 under contract.
By Mr. KELLEY: The memorial of merchants and citizens of Philadelphia, praying that the officers and men of the Kearsarge be rewarded for the sinking of the Alabama, as recommended by the Secretary of the Navy.
By Mr. LAFLIN: The memorial of H. A. Harvey, of New York city, praying for the extension of certain patents for the manufacture of wood screws issued
By Mr. LAWRENCE, of Pennsylvania: A petition from citizens of Beaver county, Pennsylvania, asking an increase of duties on foreign wools.
By Mr. SAWYER: The petition of A. V. Balch, and 20 others, citizens of Waupacca county, Wisconsin, praying for an enactment of equal laws for the regulation of inter-State insurances.
By Mr. SCHENCK: The petition of physicians of Eaton, Ohio, praying that medicines and preparations of the United States or other national Pharmacopoeia, of which the full and proper formula is published in the dispensatories, &c., be placed on the free list, inasmuch as the high tax on alcohol is sufficient to exempt them from tax on "officinal medicines." By Mr. STEVENS: The petition of John McGarrish, asking for increase of pension.
Also, two petitions of Cafy Ahl, and numerous others, citizens of Pennsylvania, asking for protection for American industry.
Also, the petition of Elizabeth Klinger, praying for a pension.
Also, the petition of Martha R. Bauer, praying for a pension.
By Mr. WELKER: The petition of J. H. Fay, and 66 others, wool-growers of Lorain county, Ohio, asking protection on wool.
Also, the petition of R. C. Fenn, and 27 others, wool-growers of Medina county, Ohio, asking for the