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member would be familiar with the name, [laughter,] the Raritan and Delaware Bay Company. The powers conferred upon that company were limited.
Mr. STEWART. I should like to hear the name of the other company. Mr. JOHNSON. I do not know. One is sufficient for my purpose, and I have got the one I expected to get.
Mr. CHANDLER. Perhaps the Senator never heard of the Camden and Amboy. [Laughter.]
Mr. JOHNSON. Yes, I have; but I do not think they have anything to do with this bill. [Laughter.] I do not think they have prompted it. I am not sure that the other did not.
charter. It assumes, as vested in Congress, therefore, the power to take into its own hands the charters granted by the several States, and to modify them just as they think proper, not only by extending the authority which the charter may grant, but if, in the judgment of Congress, at any time hereafter, or now, any of the restrictions in those charters are calculated to interfere with commerce between the States or to impede the transportation of the mails, they have the authority to repeal, practically, any of the limitations in the charter or any of the powers conferred upon the company by the charter.
Mr. STEWART. I should like to inquire of the chairman of the Committee on Commerce if the Camden and Amboy Company are favorable to this bill.
Mr. CHANDLER. They are supposed not to be. [Laughter.]
Mr. JOHNSON. Then the Raritan and Delaware Bay Company is chartered with limited powers. If this bill passes and it is operative, that company will be authorized to do what it cannot do under its charter. I think that may be considered as perfectly plain as a legal proposition, and as a proposition clear in the judgment of the committee, who, I suppose, intended to give to the Raritan and Delaware Bay Company, among others, some powers which its charter did not confer.
Mr. HOWARD. Will the honorable Senator allow me to inquire what are the termini of the Raritan and Delaware Bay railroad? Mr. JOHNSON. I do not know.
Mr. HOWARD. It strikes me that is a very essential question.
Mr. JOHNSON. If my friend belongs to the Committee on Commerce, I have no doubt he knows both the termini; and if not, his friend who sits next to him [Mr. CHANDLER] can set him right in that particular.
But it will be authorized, if this bill can be legitimately passed, to do what it is not authorized to do by its New Jersey charter. If that be so, then the question broadly presents itself, can Congress, under any authority which it possesses of regulating commerce between the States, or of establishing post offices and post roads, exempt one of these companies from the limitations contained in its charter? If it can, then the whole country has been under a delusion upon the subject of this power; every State in the Union has shared in that delusion; every court in every State in the Union and the Supreme Court of the United States have partaken of the same delusion; for it never has been questioned (and I think I speak with certain knowledge upon the subject) by any State Legislature, by any State judicial tribunal, or by the Supreme Court of the United States, that a company chartered by a State to make a railroad may have its franchise forfeited if it undertakes to exercise powers not included within its charter. And of the powers which have heretofore been supposed exclusively vested in the State governments, that of regulating the tolls which they may charge, that of regulating the service for which the tolls may be charged, that of regulating the manner in which the business of the company shall be conducted, are powers supposed to be exclusively intrusted to the State governments, or rather, to speak in the spirit and in the letter of the Constitution of the United States, they are powers not delegated to the General Government, and therefore reserved to the States.
Now, what will this bill do? The charter of the particular company, the name of which was given to me by the honorable chairman, does not authorize the company to carry passengers and freight as it will be authorized to carry passengers and freight if this bill passes. Have we the power to do that? In the first place, what the bill does is to enlarge a charter granted by a State; it is amendatory to a State
What do those two powers prove if they exist? That the charter of every railroad comof every State in the Union may be modpany ified by Congress whenever Congress thinks proper to exert the power of modification either by enlarging the franchise or by restricting the franchise. IfCongress should, therefore, come to the conclusion that the tolls which one of these companies is empowered to charge by its franchise are too high they can reduce them; if they think they are too low they can increase them. What power is that? It is the power, not of establishing a road for the first time by inherent authority existing in Congress, or any delegated authority existing in Congress to make roads and canals, but it is an authority to interfere with the chartered rights of companies established under charters granted by a State; and that is just what this bill does.
If the gentlemen whose minds are not made up upon the question will turn to the bill they will find, I think, that the criticism to which I am about to subject it is well founded. It is sweeping in its terms. Every railroad company in the United States is liable to its provisions. It recites the authority conferred upon Congress-I do not give the words now-to regulate commerce, to establish post roads, to raise and support armies; and therefore this bill is to be enacted under all or any one of the authorities which Congress by this recital is correctly said to have. The power to regulate commerce among the States, to establish post roads, to raise and support armies, either by itself or all collectively, are relied upon as showing that what is proposed to be done by the bill is within the power of Congress.
Therefore be it enacted, &c., That every railroad company whose road is operated by steam, its successors and assigns be, and is hereby, authorized to carry upon and over its road, connections, boats, bridges, and ferries, all passengers, troops, Government supplies, mails, freight, and property on their way from any State to another State, and to receive compensation therefor.
authority to receive compensation. What sort of compensation? How is it to be regulated? Is it to be regulated upon the ground of a quantum meruit? Can they charge any passenger just what they please, or just what the jury of a State, if it becomes the subject of contest, may decide to be the value of the service? Can they charge for freight just what they please, subject to a like contingency? Under this bill they can do it, for the bill does not undertake itself to regulate the charges which the companies may make for performing the service which they are authorized by this bill to perform, but not authorized by their charters to perform. Why, sir, that is at war with the policy of every State in the Union. It is at war with an obviously sound policy. Do you mean to subject the travel of passengers or the transportation of freight to the unlimited demand which a company may make for either service? Every State limits the compensation which the company is authorized to receive; but this bill leaves it without limit.
It assumes, then, stopping there, that there are railroad companies now operated by steam that have not the authority to carry over their roads, &c., property and passengers on the way from one State to another State, and to receive compensation therefor. Stopping, therefore, at that part of the bill as it is now before the Senate, we are undertaking to give to these several railroad companies a power which they have not under their charters-a power which the bill upon its face assumes that they have not. Let us see how that will work practically. In every State in the Union there are to be found railroads whose termini begin necessarily in the State granting the franchise, and which often terminate at some point short of its own territorial line-a railroad from town to town within a State. We all know that. Do you mean to take from the States the authority to charter roads of that description? I suppose not. But what is the benefit to the State of chartering roads of that description if the very moment they are chartered Congress can say that, in spite of State legislation and State policy, a road, both of whose termini are to be within the State, may disregard its limits and go anywhere with any passenger or freight that may be on board of their cars, provided they be destined eventually to some other State? But that is not all. You not only give them the authority to carry freight beyond the ter minus of their own road, but you give them the
But that is not all. The honorable committee, of which my friend from Michigan is the chairman, did not think it was sufficient to accomplish the purpose they had in view, that the bill should pass in the form in which it came from the House of Representatives. They have, therefore, amended it, and what is the amendment? The bill, without the amendment, merely gives the power to pass with passengers or supplies that may be destined from any State to another State, and to charge for the transportation; but this question occurred to the committee evidently, and to the friends of the measure outside of Congress, how is a company, limited to some point short of the territorial line of a State, to carry passengers or freight destined from its own to some other State? How can it do it? It can only do it in one of two ways: by connecting at its own terminus with any road which may start from that terminus to the State line, or, if there is no such road, then by making a road; and that is what the committee, if I understand it, have advised the Senate to provide. They say, substantially, there are railroads to be found in some of the States which, under the limitations of their old charters, will not be able to transport passengers or freight or supplies on board their own roads, for transportation to the extent of their own limits, destined for other States, unless they are also authorized-the same company-to form a connection with some road which will take the passengers or the freight into another State. And you propose to give to the company whose power is limited by its own charter the authority, if there is no existing road with which it can connect, to make a connection by making a road. How is it to be made? It can only be made by the exercise of the right of eminent domain, unless the parties through whose lands the road is to pass think proper to cede what may be necessary for the purposes of the new road.
What are to be the limitations imposed upon the company in the management of the road that they are thus authorized to make in order to form a connection between the existing road and a road in some other State, so as to enable them to carry passengers and freight destined for another State? The power that you confer is a power involved in the general authority which you give them to connect with roads of other States in any way and anyhow. You give them the authority, therefore, under this act of Congress, without restriction to take possession of the land of a State, to take it away from its owners, and establish a road of their own; and, as I said before, after having established it to charge for the use of it just what they may think proper.
Even assuming the authority to belong to Congress to charter a road, it would be bad enough if you were to charter a company for the purpose of making a railroad and giving it all the powers necessary to accomplish that purpose, that you should not regulate the man
States came to a different opinion as far as the exigency of that case was determined, and they came to that opinion upon the ground that that authority to regulate commerce among the States included navigation, and was an authority which did not terminate at the boundary line of any State, but went into any State as far as its navigable rivers would permit it to go, and that Congress, therefore, had the authority by license to authorize the vessels obtaining a license from the United States to pursue their trade from the State to which they belonged to the State for which the cargo was destined; but in that decision Chief Justice Marshall, speaking for the whole bench, admitted that roads exclusively within the limits of a State, commerce altogether internal, whether carried on upon the waters of a State or carried on upon the roads of a State, were entirely, exclusively, within the jurisdiction of the State.
ner in which the powers are to be exerted, but it is still worse when you leave them at large to exert the authority that you propose to confer upon them in any way that they may think
But that is not all. The amendment goes further. It gives the power "fo connect with roads of other States, so as to form continuous lines for the transportation of the same to the place of destination." Now mark, Mr. President, I have assumed that it will sometimes happen that there is no existing road with which they can make a connection, and that they are therefore to make a road. To give them the authority, if we have the power to authorize them to make a road, to charge for the use of the road would seem to be all right. But there are railroads with which a connection may be made. Then what do you say to them? The Raritan railroad-and I mention it only for the purpose of illustration-connects with some other road in New Jersey which runs through the State, and it can by means of that other road transport the passengers on board its own cars and the freight destined to some other State, to their places of destination. Now, what do you say? That if their passengers and their freight are placed in the cars of the road with which they form a connection and by which they are carried to the place of their destination in some other State, they may charge for the transportation upon that connecting road. Nothing is plainer than that. They are to connect with roads of other States so as to form continuous lines for the transportation of passengers and freight to their place of destination, and they are to receive compensation therefor.
What is the effect upon the passenger or the owner of the freight, if I am right? It is thisunless it be the purpose of the committee to accomplish what I suppose they will hardly pretend to say they have the authority to accomplish-to mulet the passenger or the owner of the freight with double charges. The passenger upon the Raritan railroad, or the owner of freight which is transported upon the connecting road of which the Raritan railroad constitutes no part except under the authority of this bill, is to be charged for that transportation by the Raritan company; and you do not propose to take from the connecting road that power. Leaving, therefore, to the connecting road the power to charge for transportation, you give to the Raritan road the power to charge also, and you give it without any limitation. They may charge what they please. Not being subject to the limitations contained in the charter of the connecting road, they are left to fix their compensation upon the ground of a quantum meruit. Why, Mr. President, with just as much authority, I think, could Congress say that the passenger should be carried without compensation. The authority to increase the tolls involves in it the authority to diminish the tolls, and the authority to diminish the tolls involves the power to do away with the tolls altogether and make the roads free.
I have not the books before me, Mr. President, nor if I had would I trouble the Senate with citations from them; but every lawyer in the Senate who is at all familiar with the decisicns of the Supreme Court of the United States knows that long before and subsequent to the case of Gibbons vs. Ogden, reported in 9 Wheaton, it was the received doctrine that the internal commerce of a State was exclusively in the power of a State. The great men who filled the judicial department of the State of New York at the time when that decision was pronounced in the State court-men whose superiors were never found upon any bench either before or since-were of opinion in that case that the exclusive patent granted for the navigation of the waters of the Hudson river by steam was authorized upon the ground that the Hudson river was entirely within the State of New York, and it was therefore to be considered as included within the admitted right of every State to regulate its own domestic commerce. The Supreme Court of the United
Now, what does this bill say? That a road constructed for the local trade of a State, for the purpose of benefiting a commerce entirely internal as within a State, shall not be subject to any limitations contained in its own charter, provided it has on board its cars a passenger or a box of freight designed to go beyond the limits of which the road is authorized to carry it by its own charter. Once find the possession of one of these companies whose rights are limited, granted for the purpose of carrying on domestic trade as contradistinguished from commerce between the States-once put on board a road of that description a particle of freight or a single passenger, and it has a right to disregard its own charter, and the State has no authority to refuse that permission. It has no authority, therefore, to repeal the charter.
Let us look at that for a moment. The franchise is abused, clearly abused, or the State exercises a power reserved, as is done in most of these charters, of repealing or modifying the charter. You pass this act. A State insists upon her right to forfeit the charter of any particular company upon the ground that it is subject to forfeiture for an abuse of its franchise; or it undertakes to qualify the franchise; it undertakes to repeal the charter. Can the State do that if we have the authority to pass this bill? May not the company say, and say with success, if we possess the power this bill assumes to exert, "It is true we have abused the franchise; it is true that independent of congressional legislation the charter may be forfeited; it is true that by the terms of the charter you have a right to repeal it; but we stand upon the paramount authority of the Congress of the United States, and they have decided that we shall have the authority to make a road, unless we can form the connection in some other way, so as to connect our own road with the roads leading to some other State; you have no right to interfere to forfeit our charter or repeal our charter, because to do either renders useless the object which Congress has in view, and as every legal act of Congress upon any subject over which the jurisdiction of the body extends is by the very terms of the Constitution paramount to State legislation, we stand upon that paramount authority, and we defy the State to take away from us our franchise."
Now, Mr. President, as far as we can do it, we have admitted Colorado; and it was put upon the ground that a territorial condition was not suited to the genius of the American people; they wanted the protection that a State of this Union can claim under the Constitution. Pass this bill, and as far as the particular power is concerned, heretofore deemed to be exclusively in the States, we are in a condition neither more nor less than territorial. My friend from Oregon, [Mr. WILLIAMS,] who so well told us how important it was to the people of a Territory to be permitted to form themselves into a State government, to become a part of this great brotherhood of States, to be one of the States composing the Union, in order that they may have the powers reserved to the States and to the people of the States and escape the exclusive legislation of Congress, will find him
self sadly mistaken in the practical result, provided the principle that is to be found in this bill is adopted. Oregon may fancy that she has a right to charter railroads and affix what terms she thinks proper; Colorado, if she comes inand that may be one of her purposes in coming-may desire to charter railroads, and she may think that she will derive vast benefit from the right to have control over franchises of this description. But it is a delusion if the principle upon which this bill stands is a sound one. It will depend entirely upon the fancy of Congress.
Let a committee on commerce, as enlightened as the present committee of this body is, get it into their heads that the limitations contained in these several charters are dangerous and destructive to commerce between the States or to foreign commerce, and then they will claim not to usurp, because they do not consider it as usurpation, but they will claim the right to take the whole subject into the hands of Congress, thus throwing back in the instances to which I have alluded Oregon and Colorado into the chrysalis state of a Territory, and liable to the mischief so well depicted by my friend from Oregon. I tell him to take heed. Oregon is in danger. The people of Colorado, whom he is so anxious at once to bring into this Union of States, are in danger. It is not the old States only, but the new; one and all will be involved in the vortex of congressional power, until at last we shall become in relation to a subject of paramount importance, until lately considered to be exclusively vested in the States, a consolidated Government; and I stand upon the wisdom of our fathers-wisdom which fell from the lips of those men who were foremost in giving a liberal construction to the Constitution after it was adopted and were members of the Federal party, among whom was the enlightened and eloquent Ames, when I say to the Senate, I do not repeat his language, I give the substance of it-that consolidation in that sense will be destructive of American constitutional freedom. The Union consolidated is one thing; the Government of the Union consolidated so as to take within its own grasp powers heretofore supposed to be reserved to the States, is another thing. Under the first no imagi nation can depict the renown, the prosperity, and the happiness which will be the fate, if not of ourselves, of those who are to follow us; and no imagination, however fertile in conceiving mischiefs that may come in the future, can depict the horrors that will sooner or later be the result of such a consolidation as I have just stated; internal dissension, civil wars without number, until we are reduced to the condition in which the South American republics are now placed for the most part, when some military usurper coming from abroad or springing up within our own limits shall save us from the horrors of anarchy by ruling us with a despotic will.
I am done, Mr. President.
Mr. HOWARD. Mr. President, I have not had as full an opportunity to examine the facts connected with this case and the legal decisions which may be applicable to it as I could have desired.
Mr. JOHNSON. If the Senator will permit me, I will move that the matter go over until to-morrow. It is a subject that ought not to be disposed of at once.
Mr. HOWARD. Very well.
Mr. WILSON. Let us have an executive session.
Mr. CHANDLER. I move that the Senate proceed to the consideration of executive business so as to leave this bill as the unfinished business for to-morrow.
Mr. HOWARD. I yield the floor for that purpose.
The motion of Mr. CHANDLER was agreed to; and after some time spent in executive session, the doors were reopened.
MESSAGE FROM THE HOUSE.
A message from the House of Representa
tives, by Mr. MCPHERSON, its Clerk, announced that the House had passed the following bills, in which it requested the concurrence of the Senate:
Mr. MORRILL. I think not.
Mr. J. M. HUMPHREY. The justice of the one is as great as the other.
Mr. MORRILL. I know of no such cases. Mr. J. M. HUMPHREY. I have in my possession a petition to the Secretary of the Treasury, which I have not yet presented, asking just such relief as this.
A bill (H. R. No. 484) for the relief of Isabella Strubing;
A bill (H. R. No. 473) to extend the jurisdiction of the Court of Claims; and
A bill (H. R. No. 475) to facilitate the settlement of the accounts of paymasters of the Army.
The bill was received and read. It directs the Secretary of the Treasury to remit, or if paid to refund, any duties levied on produce shipped from a port in the United States to a port in the United States via Canada, if the said produce was actually in transitu and detained by ice when the recent reciprocity treaty with Canada expired.
Mr. MORRILL. This bill is well guarded, and is intended to apply to some grain, I suppose, going from the West to the East.
Mr. J. M. HUMPHREY. Does this bill include grain that was bought in Canada before the reciprocity treaty expired?
Mr. MORRILL. It applies to grain shipped from a port of the United States only.
Mr. J. M. HUMPHREY. Ought it not to cover both cases?
Mr. MORRILL. I think we might find a great many cases of persons in the United States who have purchased produce in Canada under those circumstances. If we open the door in one case the number of persons to be relieved may be interminable. I should be very much opposed to making the provisions of any bill so wide as that.
The bill was then read the third time and passed.
Mr. MORRILL moved to reconsider the vote by which the bill was passed; and also moved that the motion to reconsider be laid upon the table.
The latter motion was agreed to.
ACCOUNTS OF THE UNITED STATES TREASURER.
Mr. MORRILL, by unanimous consent, reported back, without amendment, from the Committee of Ways and Means, Senate bill No. 158, to facilitate the settlement of the accounts of the Treasurer of the United States, and to secure certain moneys to the people of the United States, or to persons to whom they are due, and who are entitled to receive the
Mr. WASHBURNE, of Illinois. Let the bill be read.
The bill was read. The first section provides that all amounts of money that are represented by certificates, drafts, or checks issued by the Treasurer of the United States, or by any disbursing officer of any department of the Government of the United States upon the Treasdepositary of the United States, or upon any urer, or any Assistant Treasurer, or designated national bank designated as a depositary of the United States, and which shall be represented on the books of either of such offices as standing to the credit of any disbursing officer, and bearing date prior to July 1, 1863, and which were issued to facilitate the payment of warrants or for any other purpose in liquidation of a debt due from the United States, which shall remain outstanding on the 1st of July, 1866, shall be deposited by the Treasurer of the United States, to be covered into the Treasury by warrants to be carried to the credit of the parties in whose favor such certificates, drafts, or checks were respectively issued, or to the persons which were entitled to receive pay thereof, and into the appropriation account to be denominated "outstanding liabilities."
The second section provides that the certificate of the Register of the Treasury, stating the amount of any draft issued by the Treasurer of the United States to facilitate the payment of a warrant directed to him for payment, and which shall have remained outstanding and unpaid for three years or more as aforesaid, and which shall have been thus deposited and covered into the Treasury, shall be, and the same is hereby authorized to be, when attached to any such warrant, a sufficient voucher in satisfaction of any such warrant or part of any warrant, the same as if the drafts correctly indorsed and fully satisfied were attached to such warrant or part of warrant; and all moneys mentioned in this and the preceding section shall remain as a permanent appropriation for the payment of all such outstanding and unpaid certificates, drafts, or checks.
The third section provides that the payee or the bona fide holder of any such draft or check, the amount of which has been so deposited and covered into the Treasury shall, on presenting the same to the proper officer of the Treasury, be entitled to have it paid by the settlement of an account and the issuing of a warrant in his favor, according to the practice in other cases of authorized and liquidated claims against the United States.
The fourth section provides that at the ter
mination of every fiscal year after this act shall begin to operate, the provisions thereof shall apply to all similar certificates, draits, and checks which shall then have remained for three years or more outstanding, unsatisfied, and unpaid, and to all disbursing officers' accounts that shall have so remained unchanged as in the next section provided for.
The fifth section provides that the amounts, except such as are provided for in the first section of this act, of the accounts of any kind of disbursing officer of the Government of the United States which shall have remained unchanged or which shall not have been increased by any new deposit thereto, nor decreased by drafts drawn thereon for the space of three years, shall, in like manner, be covered into the Treasury to the proper appropriation to which they may belong; and the amounts thereof shall, on the certificate of the Treasurer of the United States that such amount has been deposited in the Treasury, be credited by the proper accounting officer of the Treas ury, on the books of the Treasury Department, to the officer in whose name it had stood on the books of any agency of the Treasury, if it shall be made to appear that he is entitled to such credit.
The sixth section enacts that for the purpose of giving force and effect to the full intent and meaning of this act, it shall be the duty of the Treasurer, and of all Assistant Treasurers, and of all designated depositaries of the United States, and of the cashiers of all national banks designated as such depositaries, to report to the Secretary of the Treasury at the close of business on the 30th day of June next, and in like manner at the close of business on every 30th day of June thereafter, the condition of every such account so standing, as specified in the preceding sections, on the books of their respective offices, stating the name of each depositor respectively with his official designation, the total amount so remaining on deposit to his credit, and the dates respectively of the last credit and the last debit made to each of such accounts respectively; and it shall be the duty of every and each disbursing officer in any and every department of the Government of the United States to make a like return of all checks issued by such officer, and which may then have been outstanding and unpaid for three years and more, stating fully in such report the name of the payee, for what purpose given, the office on which drawn, the number of the voucher received therefor, and the date, number, and amount for which it was drawn, and when known, the residence of the payee.
Mr. MORRILL. Mr. Speaker, this act becomes necessary in consequence of the fact, which is of course known to all the members of this House, that no money can be taken from the Treasury without an appropriation. In the dealings of the Department with disbursing officers and with various officers connected with the Treasury, there will constantly arise little errors in their accounts; and in order to facilitate the settlement of these accounts it has been necessary heretofore to pass an act of a similar kind. None has been passed since 1837, and that act was construed to apply only to transactions occurring previous to that date.
I have conversed with the Treasurer of the United States, General Spinner, upon this matter, and am quite satisfied that it is right. It will not take a dollar out of the Treasury; the money is all there; but it is necessary that we should give the power to make these transfers from general to special accounts, in order that these accounts with a large number of individuals, some of which are large, while many are very small, may be settled and closed. If no one wishes further explanation, I will ask for the previous question.
The previous question was seconded and the main question ordered; and under the operation thereof the bill was ordered to be engrossed and read a third time; and being engrossed, it was accordingly read.the third time and passed.
Whereas it appears from a report of the Secretary of the Interior, dated January 25, 1864, that there remain undistributed at the Interior Department upward of eight hundred copies cach of the American State Papers, second series, in seventeen volumes: Therefore,
Be it resolved by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled, That the Secretary of the Interior be, and he is hereby, directed to distribute, by mail or otherwise, four hundred copies of each of the said volumes in the manner following, to wit: to each member of the Senate and House of Representatives of the present Congress, one copy; to such public and college libraries as may be designated by the Joint Committee on the Library, one copy each.
Mr. WASHBURNE, of Illinois. I object. Mr. HAYES. I am anxious the joint resolution should pass before leaving the city, and I think if the gentleman will listen to a statement he will withdraw his objection.
Mr. WASHBURNE, of Illinois. I am opposed to the resolution in any shape. We have no right to take the books of the Government without paying for them.
Mr. HAYES. I move to suspend the rules. The SPEAKER. That motion is not now in order.
LIBRARY OF CONGRESS.
Mr. HAYES. I ask unanimous consent to report the following joint resolution from the Joint Committee on the Library:
Joint resolution extending the privileges of the Library of Congress to certain officers of the United States.
Resolved by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled, That the privilege of using the books in the Library of Congress shall be extended to the General-in-Chief of the Army of the United States; to the Assistant Secretaries and chiefs of bureaus of each of the Departments; to the Comptrollers and Auditors of the Treasury, and the Treasurer of the United States; to the Superintendent of the Const Survey, the Superintendent of the Naval Observatory, the Surgeon General of the Army, the Judge Advocate General of the Army, the Superintendent of the Government Printing Office, the Commissioner of Public Buildings, and the Postmaster, Sergeant-at-Arms, and Doorkeeper of the Senate and House of Representatives, on the same terms and conditions as prescribed by law for Senators and Representatives.
Resolved, That no books shall be taken by persons privileged to use said Library outside of the limits of the District of Columbia.
Mr. WASHBURNE, of Illinois. I object, unless it is amended so as to let in the whole world.
Mr. ROSS. I want the soldiers' orphans and widows included.
Mr. ELIOT demanded the previous question. The previous question was seconded and the main question ordered; and under the operation thereof the bill was ordered to a third reading, and was accordingly read the third time and passed.
Mr. ELIOT moved to reconsider the vote by which the bill was passed; and also moved that the motion to reconsider be laid upon the table.
The latter motion was agreed to.
RELIEF OF ARMY PAYMASTERS.
Mr. SCHENCK. I ask unanimous consent to report back, from the Committee on Military Affairs, House bill No. 475, for the relief of paymasters of the Army, with a substitute.
Mr. WARD. I object to its consideration at this time.
The substitute was ordered to be printed; and the bill and substitute were then recommitted.
KANSAS WAR CLAIMS.
On motion of Mr. SCHENCK, the Committee on Military Affairs was discharged from the further consideration of Senate bill No. 259, to authorize the Secretary of War to settle the claims of the State of Kansas for the services of the militia called out by the Governor of that State on the requisition of Major General Curtis, commander of the United States forces in that State; and the same was referred to the select committee on the war debts of the loyal States.
SALE OF LAND AUTHORIZED.
Mr. INGERSOLL, by unanimous consent, introduced a bill authorizing the sale of a piece of land in the city of Washington; which was read a first and second time, and referred to the Committee for the District of Columbia.
SANITARY CONDITION OF WASHINGTON. Mr. INGERSOLL. I should like to call the attention of the House to a subject that was referred to the Committee for the District of Columbia some time since, respecting the sanitary condition of this city. The committee examined that question and reported a resolution for the adoption of the House, but its consideration being objected to it was withdrawn, and has never received the action of the House. In view of the cholera having reached our shores, and that this city presents a condition inviting that epidemic, the committee have thought it proper to ask a small appropriation, which I hope will be considered this morning. I ask that the resolution be read.
The joint resolution was read. It proposes to appropriate $25,000, and places the same under the control of the Commissioner of Pub
lic Buildings to be expended by him, or so much thereof as may be necessary, in such work as may be required to put in proper condition the avenues and public reservations under his control so as to prevent if possible the appearance of the cholera or other epidemic in the city of Washington.
Mr. WASHBURNE, of Illinois. I have no objection to its being introduced and referred to the Committee of the Whole on the state of the Union, where we can consider it
Mr. INGERSOLL. The object is now to take steps with as little delay as possible.
Mr. HARDING, of Illinois. I suggest that it be extended to the object of keeping the Hall of the House healthy and comfortable. I, myself, have been near perishing here for want of a breath of fresh air ever since I have been here. Daily I am reminded of the "black hole" of Calcutta. I am absolutely afraid of perishing for want of air.
Mr. WASHBURNE, of Illinois. Let it go to the Committee of the Whole on the state of the Union, and I will examine it, and if there Il
Mr. ANCONA. I ask unanimous consent to call up the motion to reconsider the vote by which House bill No. 473, extending the jurisdiction of the Court of Claims, was recommitted to the Committee on Military Affairs. No objection was made.
Mr. WASHBURNE, of Illinois. Let the bill be reported.
The bill was read.
Mr. WASHBURNE, of Illinois. For what
purpose is this bill before the House? On a motion to reconsider the vote by which it was referred. Mr. WASHBURNE, of Illinois. To what committee was it sent?
The SPEAKER. The bill was reported by the Committee on Military Affairs at the time that committee was reporting, and recommitted; and a motion to reconsider was made with the understanding that the gentleman from Pennsylvania [Mr. ANCONA] should call it up afterwards. No objection being made, the gentleman has called up the motion to reconsider, and it is now before the House. Mr. WASHBURNE, of Illinois.
I hope that motion will not be pressed this morning. The SPEAKER. The gentleman from Pennsylvania proposes, in case of reconsid
eration, to move to strike out the first section of the bill, and to insert in lieu thereof the following substitute:
Mr. WASHBURNE, of Illinois. It relieves them from a liability to the Treasury.
Mr. BINGHAM. I do not want the House to be misled by any such remarks. The same thing is done in this House upon ex parte testimony; not testimony taken before a committee authorized to examine witnesses in the premises, but testimony taken out of doors before a notary public or a justice of the peace. I have seen this thing; I have had some experience in it, and I undertake to say that the effect of this bill is to protect your Treasury against sands of dollars annually. depletion to the extent of hundreds of thou
Mr. WASHBURNE, of Illinois. I move to lay the motion to reconsider upon the table. The question was put, and there were-ayes 28, noes 36; no quorum voting.
Tellers were ordered; and Messrs. ANCONA, and WASHBURNE of Illinois, were appointed. The House divided; and the tellers reported -ayes 24, noes 70.
So the House refused to lay the motion to reconsider upon the table.
The question recurred on the demand for the previous question on the motion to reconsider.
Mr. WASHBURNE, of Illinois. I hope the gentleman from Pennsylvania will not press the consideration of this bill this morning. It is certainly one which ought not to be passed without full and free discussion. It takes away jurisdiction from the House in all matters of claims of this particular kind, leaving it to the Court of Claims. Now, I think that is very unsafe. I think the House ought not to part with its jurisdiction over these matters. I hope the gentleman will postpone this motion.
Mr. ANCONA. I see no reason for postponing it any longer. The bill was reported unanimously by the Committee on Military Affairs and has been on the files of members for two or three weeks.
Mr. BINGHAM. Will the gentleman let me say a word?
Mr. ANCONA. I will withdraw the previous question for that purpose.
Mr. BINGHAM. Mr. Speaker, I desire to say, in answer to the suggestion of the gentleman from Illinois, that the substitute is but verbal; that it does not change in any particu(ar the substance of the bill as originally reported by the committee and printed. This bill does not put it in the power of the Court of Claims to take one dollar out of the Treasury of the United States. It simply provides that in all cases of alleged losses by paymasters, quartermasters, or commissaries of subsistence, which are usually passed upon in this House upon ex parte evidence, the claimants shall make their claims under the sanctions of law, under the solemnity of oaths administered in judicial proceedings, and in the presence of a law officer of the United States; that they shall not be allowed this relief unless the court, upon a full hearing of the whole case, upon testimony other than ex parte testimony, shall come to the conclusion that it is equitable to relieve the officer from his liability; in which event the bill provides that he shall simply have the credit upon his accounts in settlement, but not to draw any money from the Treasury.
Mr. WASHBURNE, of Illinois. That is the same in effect as drawing money rom the Treasury.
Mr. BINGHAM. No, sir.
Mr. WASHBURNE, of Illinois. How is it to protect the Treasury when it affords the means to these gentlemen of getting rid of paying what is standing against them into the Treasury?
Mr. BINGHAM. The House is not to be deluded by any such suggestion. I answer the gentleman by saying that time and time again we have had bills passed through this House relieving persons from liabilities which they are under to the extent of thousands of dollars, and that, too, when there was not a syllable of legal evidence in the case. Now, this bill provides that all this shall be done upon proper evidence, before competent law officers.
Mr. GRIDER. It submits the justice of the case to the court?
Mr. BINGHAM. Certainly it does; and the court is to pass upon the case upon proper evidence, and after being fully satisfied that the party asking relief is not in fault, that he has done his whole duty, then the decide that in equity he is entitled to be relieved from liability.
Mr. GRIDER. And depositions in the case can be read in the court?
Mr. BINGHAM. Only upon notice, and in the presence of the officer of the Government charged with looking after the interests of the Government.
Mr. SCHENCK. I am a great deal astonished that opposition should be made to the passage of a bill of this kind. It is not necessary that I should add anything to what has been said by my colleagues upon the committee, [Messrs. ANCONA and BINGHAM,] except this: I wish to advise the House that there have been referred to the Military Committee a great number of cases which would have occupied pretty much all the time of the committee if we were to give to cach case that investigation which ought to be given to it before arriving at something like a judicial decision upon its merits. They are cases where quartermasters, commissaries, and other disbursing officers have lost their vouchers by capture by the enemy, or otherwise, and they are therefore unable to have their accounts presented, except upon other and secondary evidence.
Mr. SCHENCK. I think perhaps this matter would be better understood by having the bill and the proposed substitute for the first section again read.
The bill and substitute were again read. Mr. WASHBURNE, of Illinois. In order to remove any difficulty I would suggest to the gentleman in charge of this bill, [Mr. ANCONA,] to put in a proviso that an appeal shall be allowed in all cases.
Now, all that this bill provides is, that instead of each case being adjusted and settled in the hurry of congressional business, by a committee of either House or Senate, and a special enactment passed for the purpose, there shall be a general law referring to the Court of Claims all cases of this character, authorizing that court to report what are the facts in each case, and whether credit should or should not be allowed to the disbursing officer. That is the whole effect of this bill. We prefer a general law because we believe that neither a committee of this House, nor the House itself, could give a thorough investigation to each of these cases so well as the court could do.
Mr. GRIDER. What is the lowest sum which the court is to consider?
Mr. SCHENCK. There is no amount stated in the bill.
Mr. DELANO. I was not in here when the bill was read. I would ask if it is proposed to make the proceeding of the court final.
Mr. SCHENCK. There is an appeal allowed to the Supreme Court.
Mr. DELANO. I would suggest the propriety of providing that the decision of the
court shall not be reviewed.
In order to satisfy the gentleman, although I think it is the law now, I would suggest to my colleague on the committee [Mr. ANCONA] to modify his substitute by adding the following proviso:
That the Court of Claims shall have jurisdiction to hear and determine the claim of any paymaster, quartermaster, commissary of subsistence, or other disbursing officer of the United States, or of his administrators or executors, for relief from responsibility on account of losses by capture, or otherwise, while in the line of his duty, of Government funds, vouchers, records, and papers in his charge, and for which he was and is held responsible: Provided, An appeal may be taken to the Supreme Court as in other cases.
The question was upon agreeing to the substitute for the first section.
Mr. ANCONA. I call the previous question. The previous question was seconded and the main question ordered; and under the operation thereof the substitute was agreed to.
The bill as amended was then ordered to be engrossed and read a third time; and being engrossed, it was accordingly read the third
The question was upon the passage of the bill as amended; and being taken, there were, upon a division-ayes sixty-six, noes not counted.
So the bill was passed.
Mr. ANCONA moved to reconsider the vote by which the bill was passed; and also moved that the motion to reconsider be laid upon the table.
The latter motion was agreed to.
PAYMASTERS OF THE ARMY-AGAIN.
Mr. SCHENCK. This morning I reported back to this House, by instruction of the Committee on Military Affairs, House bill No. 475, for the relief of paymasters of the Army, with a substitute, and asked for its consideration at that time. The gentleman from New York [Mr. WARD] objected to its consideration then, and it was recommitted. Having examined the bill, he now withdraws his objection, I