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general, he has undertaken, not only to levy taxes to the amount of millions upon the people, but to prescribe regulations for its collection, and for ascertaining the value of imported merchandise, which the law had, in express terms, reserved for the legislative action of Congress.

"And now, to crown the system of continual and unrelenting exercise of executive legislation by the alternate gross abuse of constitutional power and bold assumption of powers never vested in him by any law, we come to the veto message referred by the house to this committee.

"A comparative review of the four several vetoes which, in the course of fifteen months, have suspended the legislation of this Union, combined with that amphibious production, the reasons for approving and signing a bill, and at the same time striking by judicial construction at its most important enactment, illustrated by contemporaneous effusions of temper and of sentiment, divulged at convivial festivals, and obtruded upon the public eye by the fatal friendship of sycophant private correspond ents, and stripped to its naked nature by the repeated and daring assumption both of legislative and of judicial power, would present anomalies of character and conduct rarely seen upon earth. Such an investigation, though strictly within the scope of the instructions embraced in the reference to this committee, would require a voluminous report, which the scantiness of time will not allow, and which may not be necessary for maturing the judgment of the house upon the document now before them.

legislative power of the Union has been for the last fifteen months, with regard to the action of Congress upon measures of vital importance, in a state of suspended animation, strangled by the fivetimes repeated stricture of the executive cord. They observe, that under these unexampled obstructions to the exercise of their high and legitimate duties, they have hitherto preserved the most respectful forbearance towards the Executive Chief; that while he has, time after time, annulled by

the mere act of his will their commission from the people to enact laws for the common welfare, they have forborne even the expression of their resentment for these multiplied insults and injuries. They believed they had a high destiny to fulfil, by administering to the people in the form of law remedies for the sufferings which they had too long endured. The will of one man has frustrated all their labours, and prostrated all their powers. The majority of the Committee believe, that the case has occurred in the annals of our Union contemplated by the founders of the Constitution, by grant to the House of Representatives of the power to impeach the President of the United States; but they are aware, that the resort to that expedient might, in the present condition of public affairs, prove abortive. They see that the irreconcileable difference of opinion and of action between the Legislative and Executive departments of the government is but sympathetic with the discordant views and feelings of the people."

Against this report and its adoption the President protested, in a message sent by him to the House They perceive that the whole of Representatives. In this pro

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test he maintains that his exercise of the veto, however unusual, was performed in a regular and constitutional manner, and in a strict accordance with his sense of responsibility for the duties imposed upon him. He adds, that had he been impeached before the Senate, he would have met the accusation with firmness; and concludes by protesting against the unfairness and unconstitutionality of the report.

The negotiations which had been going on between Lord Ashburton and Mr. Webster, relating to the Boundary and other questions, were brought to a close in August; and on the 9th day of that month, a treaty was signed at Washington by those two Plenipotentiaries, with a provision that it was to be duly ratified, and the mutual exchange of ratifications to take place in London, within six months from that date.* By this treaty, the line of the north-western Boundary was settled by a minute geographical description of the country through which it was to run. By the 8th Article it was stipulated that Great Britain and America should each maintain on the coast of Africa a sufficient squadron or naval force, carrying not less than eighty guns, for the purpose of enforcing separately and respectively the laws, rights, and obligations of each of the two countries for the suppression of the slave-trade. By the 9th Article, the parties to the treaty agreed to unite in all becoming representations and remonstrances with those Powers within whose dominions slave-markets were allowed to exist; and to urge upon all such Powers the propriety and duty of closing such markets at once and for ever. The 10th

• See Appendix.

provided for the mutual delivery up to justice of all persons who, being charged with the crime of murder, or assault with intent to murder, or piracy, or arson, or robbery, or forgery, or the utterance of forged papers, committed within the jurisdiction of either country, should seek an asylum, or should be found within the territories of the other-provided that this should only be done upon such evidence of criminality as according to the laws of the place where the fugitive or person so charged should be found, would justify his apprehension and commitment for trial, if the crime or offence had there been committed.

Lord Ashburton arrived in England on the 30th of September. Before he left New York, he was entertained at a public banquet, where the most cordial expressions of goodwill were exchanged on both sides; and there is little doubt that the happy expedient of sending out a Special Ambassador from Great Britain, had a most salutary effect in promoting a friendly feeling between the two countries. His Lordship in the course of his speech on that occasion, said

"I cannot but regard it as somewhat singular and auspicious, that the respectable gentleman who presides at this hospitable board, should happen to be the immediate descendant of a man whose name will live in your memories so long as honour, patriotism, and virtue are venerated; I mean the late Mr. Jay. (Applause.) That illustrious man stepped forward on an occasion somewhat similar to that which you now celebrate; and, having visited England, happily succeeded in his errand of peace, although made under circumstances of a far more difficult nature than those

which surrounded me on a mission which has had a like fortunate termination. The task imposed on Mr. Jay was indeed an arduous one. At that period wild passions were at work, and the voice of the messenger of peace could only with difficulty be heard. But amid all those trying circumstances, that great man, and those who supported him, did maintain the independence of this country, and saved both nations from a most serious war at that time, whilst war was raging among the nations of the earth; and, undoubtedly, he laid the foundation of the great commercial prosperity of America. (Great applause.) Fortunately, gentlemen, I have had much less difficulty to encounter; for when I add to the reception I met with at Washington from the President, from his Cabinet, from the Senate and House of Representatives, that cordial welcome which I received at Boston, the cradle of American liberty and independence and also the reception with which I have been greeted here, as well in your City Hall, where I have been told that I shook hands with upwards of 3,000 persons, collected there by one common impulse-as at this festive board, around which I see such a large number of your most respectable citizens-I naturally ask, where is the danger of war between England and America? (Great applause.) Whatever may be hidden I do not pretend to scan; but of a verity I can say, that I have seen nothing but the greatest and most unaffected cordiality and goodwill and friendship. Still, although my mission has been made in peculiarly happy circum stances, yet I trust that I shall not be charged with vanity in saying, that I too have done the State

some service."" (Loud and longcontinued cheering.)

The correspondence which took place between Lord Ashburton and Mr. Daniel Webster, previous to the conclusion of the treaty, was afterwards published at full length. It is very voluminous, and we avail ourselves of a brief synopsis or summary of the whole which appeared at the time in one of the American journals, and which will be sufficient for our purpose. The American writer says, with regard to the letters

We think it will be found, that those of Lord Ashburton are remarkable for their simplicity and clearness, and an apparent inge nuousness and openness of purpose. Those of Mr. Webster are, we need scarcely say, able and powerful; but they have a certain air of showiness, and straining for effect about them, which will strike rather grating on a critical ear.

"The first letter of Lord Ashburton is upon the subject of the north-east boundary. He professes a deep interest in the welfare of this country, and an earnest desire to preserve peace between the two nations. In proof of which he refers to the fact, that he had sought strenuously to prevent the last war between England and the United States; and that he has since anxiously watched whatever passing clouds have arisen to threaten an interruption of the harmony between the two nations, He adduces also the circumstance of his undertaking this mission at his advanced age, as evidence of the existence of those friendly sentiments, when his taste and inclinations would have suggested peaceful retirement.

"Mr. Webster replies, acknowledging the friendly feelings of his

Lordship, stating that the President was aware of all his efforts in favour of peace; and invites his Lordship to begin the talk; to which his Lordship replies, waving all advantages which might be derived from declining to make the first move, and openly and frankly stating his case, drives at once in medias res. He endeavours to avoid the discussion of the question of right, saying, that there can be no hope that either party will be convinced that the right of the question is not with himself.

"Mr. Webster replies, but goes fully into the matter, which his Lordship had desired to avoid; the arguments used by Mr. Webster are, however, familiar to all who have paid any attention to the subject.

"The matter of the Boundary is fully discussed. Several long and able documents from the Maine and Massachusetts commissioners follow, the substance of which we cannot undertake to state. Lord Ashburton evinces an intimate knowledge of the subject, and handles it ably. The result is, a proposition by Mr. Webster, which is nearly that finally agreed to.

"Then comes the subject of the African slave-trade, which is disposed of without difficulty, in the manner the treaty shows. There is some correspondence with Commander Paine, and other naval artificers, who have been stationed on the African coast, &c., not now of such interest that we have burthened our memory with it.

"The Creole case is presented in strong terms by Mr. Webster in a letter (which, when published, will bring all the anti-slavery people about his ears), to which Lord Ashburton replies, that as the

news of the matter of the Creole had reached England but shortly before his departure, and as it had not, previous to that time, been presented to the notice of the British Government by Mr. Everett, he was not empowered to treat upon the subject.

"He states, however, that the laws of Great Britain recognise as free every slave who sets his foot upon British soil, as much as do the laws of Massachusetts recognise as free every foreign slave when he lands in Boston; and that they cannot be altered. But he promises that directions shall be given to the governors and other officers of the English West India islands to do nothing in this respect, when it can be properly avoided, that may tend to the disturbance of good neighbourhood' between them and the United States.


"The matter of the right of search and impressment is also proposed by Mr. Webster. this also his Lordship replies, that he has not authority to make any stipulations upon that subject; that the peculiar necessities of England in regard to this matter, growing out of her maritime situation, the immense emigration of her people to this country, and the fact that every native of Great Britain always and perpetually owes to her the duty of serving her in war, together with the similarity of appearance, and identity of language of the people of the two countries, create a necessity which forbids entering into any treaty upon the subject-at least at present.

"The case of the Caroline is then presented by Mr. Webster, and the whole matter, with its awful details, are stated in the

well and forcibly-written letter of Mr. Webster to Mr. Fox, in the spring of 1841, which is copied and referred to anew.

"To this Lord Ashburton replies with much ingenuity, stating, that inasmuch as the authorities on this side made no attempt to restrain, or did not restrain or molest the people on Navy Island, who were firing upon the inhabitants on the Canada shore, and as the Caroline was in the employ of those people, the British authorities were compelled, by the necessity of selfdefence, to invade our territory for the purpose of destroying her; that, had the case been reversed, we would not have hesitated to

pursue the same course. He regrets that the matter was not urged, and redress sought, at an earlier period, and soon after the event took place. He declares the high sense on the part of Great Britain of our claim to a sacred inviolability of territory; but urges, at the same time, the existence, in this case of the immediate and urgent necessity, admitting of no delay,' spoken of by Mr. Webster, as alone justifying an invasion of our territory-that there was no other mode left of destroying the vessel that the expedition left the Canadian shore for the purpose of destroying her at Navy Islandthat, not finding her there, there was no time for deliberation or delay, &c. He doubts whether any person or persons were sent in the boat over the cataract-that she was towed into the stream to prevent injury to the buildings and inhabitants of Schlosser-that it is not known that any person was killed by the expedition; but repeats again a respectful acknowledgment by the British Government of the sacredness of our neu

tral rights, and expresses deep regret that any necessity should have made necessary the invasion of our territory. He then complains of the treatment of the soldiers engaged in the expedition whenever caught on this side, protesting against the doctrine that soldiers are accountable to any but their own Government for the consequences of obeying the orders of the officers of their Government.

"Mr. Webster's reply recognises the correctness of the ground assumed by Lord Ashburton, in regard to the accountability of men so acting under orders; states, however, that such is the nature of our laws-such the delay in the trial of causes, and such the apparent conflict of jurisdiction between the courts of the states of the United States, that some difficulty in cases of such arrests cannot be avoided.

"Mr. Webster then, 'as directed by the President,' gives the British Government a full discharge from all further blame on account of the Caroline, inasmuch' as they have apologised, and inasmuch' as no better reparation from the nature of the case can be had, and

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inasmuch' as they have expressed so much respect and regard for the inviolable and sacred character of our neutral rights, &c."

On Friday the 7th of December, the President's message was delivered to Congress. It was as usual a lengthy document, from which we select such passages as possess the most general interest. The President begins by congratulating his fellow-citizens on the prosperity of their common country:

"We have continued reason to profess our profound gratitude to the great Creator of all things, for

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