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A Compilation of the Messages and Papers of the Presidents by James D. Richardson

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faithfully; because they are contrary to the policy of the Government,
and because to permit them would be a departure from good faith toward
those American Republics in amity with us, which are entitled to, and
will never cease to enjoy, in their calamities the cordial sympathy, and
in their prosperity the efficient good will, of the Government and of
the people of the United States.

To say that our laws in this respect are sometimes violated or
successfully evaded is only to say what is true of all laws in all
countries, but not more so in the United States than in any one whatever
of the countries of Europe. Suffice it to repeat that the laws of
the United States prohibiting all foreign military enlistments or
expeditions within our territory have been executed with impartial
good faith, and, so far as the nature of things permits, as well in
repression of private persons as of the official agents of other
Governments, both of Europe and America.

Among the Central American Republics to which modern events have
imparted most prominence is that of Nicaragua, by reason of its
particular position on the Isthmus. Citizens of the United States have
established in its territory a regular interoceanic transit route,
second only in utility and value to the one previously established in
the territory of New Granada. The condition of Nicaragua would, it is
believed, have been much more prosperous than it has been but for the
occupation of its only Atlantic port by a foreign power, and of the
disturbing authority set up and sustained by the same power in a portion
of its territory, by means of which its domestic sovereignty was
impaired, its public lands were withheld from settlement, and it was
deprived of all the maritime revenue which it would otherwise collect
on imported merchandise at San Juan del Norte.

In these circumstances of the political debility of the Republic of
Nicaragua, and when its inhabitants were exhausted by long-continued
civil war between parties neither of them strong enough to overcome
the other or permanently maintain internal tranquillity, one of
the contending factions of the Republic invited the assistance and
cooperation of a small body of citizens of the United States from the
State of California, whose presence, as it appears, put an end at once
to civil war and restored apparent order throughout the territory of
Nicaragua, with a new administration, having at its head a distinguished
individual, by birth a citizen of the Republic, D. Patricio Rivas,
as its provisional President.

It is the established policy of the United States to recognize all
governments without question of their source or their organization, or
of the means by which the governing persons attain their power, provided
there be a government _de facto_ accepted by the people of the country,
and with reserve only of the time as to the recognition of revolutionary
governments arising out of the subdivision of parent states with which
we are in relations of amity. We do not go behind the fact of a foreign
government exercising actual power to investigate questions of
legitimacy; we do not inquire into the causes which may have led to
a change of government. To us it is indifferent whether a successful
revolution has been aided by foreign intervention or not; whether
insurrection has overthrown existing government, and another has been
established in its place according to preexisting forms or in a manner
adopted for the occasion by those whom we may find in the actual
possession of power. All these matters we leave to the people and
public authorities of the particular country to determine; and their
determination, whether it be by positive action or by ascertained
acquiescence, is to us a sufficient warranty of the legitimacy of
the new government.

During the sixty-seven years which have elapsed since the establishment
of the existing Government of the United States, in all which time this
Union has maintained undisturbed domestic tranquillity, we have had
occasion to recognize governments _de facto_, founded either by domestic
revolution or by military invasion from abroad, in many of the
Governments of Europe.

It is the more imperatively necessary to apply this rule to the
Spanish American Republics, in consideration of the frequent and not
seldom anomalous changes of organization or administration which they
undergo and the revolutionary nature of most of these changes, of
which the recent series of revolutions in the Mexican Republic is an
example, where five successive revolutionary governments have made
their appearance in the course of a few months and been recognized
successively, each as the political power of that country, by the
United States.

When, therefore, some time since, a new minister from the Republic of
Nicaragua presented himself, bearing the commission of President Rivas,
he must and would have been received as such, unless he was found
on inquiry subject to personal exception, but for the absence of
satisfactory information upon the question whether President Rivas was
_in fact_ the head of an established Government of the Republic of
Nicaragua, doubt as to which arose not only from the circumstances of
his avowed association with armed emigrants recently from the United
States, but that the proposed minister himself was of that class of
persons, and not otherwise or previously a citizen of Nicaragua.

Another minister from the Republic of Nicaragua has now presented
himself, and has been received as such, satisfactory evidence appearing
that he represents the Government _de facto_ and, so far as such exists,
the Government _de jure_ of that Republic.

That reception, while in accordance with the established policy of the
United States, was likewise called for by the most imperative special
exigencies, which require that this Government shall enter at once into
diplomatic relations with that of Nicaragua. In the first place, a
difference has occurred between the Government of President Rivas and
the Nicaragua Transit Company, which involves the necessity of inquiry
into rights of citizens of the United States, who allege that they
have been aggrieved by the acts of the former and claim protection
and redress at the hands of their Government. In the second place,
the interoceanic communication by the way of Nicaragua is effectually
interrupted, and the persons and property of unoffending private
citizens of the United States in that country require the attention of
their Government. Neither of these objects can receive due consideration
without resumption of diplomatic intercourse with the Government of
Nicaragua.

Further than this, the documents communicated show that while the
interoceanic transit by the way of Nicaragua is cut off, disturbances
at Panama have occurred to obstruct, temporarily at least, that by the
way of New Granada, involving the sacrifice of the lives and property
of citizens of the United States. A special commissioner has been
dispatched to Panama to investigate the facts of this occurrence with a
view particularly to the redress of parties aggrieved. But measures of
another class will be demanded for the future security of interoceanic
communication by this as by the other routes of the Isthmus.

It would be difficult to suggest a single object of interest, external
or internal, more important to the United States than the maintenance
of the communication, by land and sea, between the Atlantic and Pacific
States and Territories of the Union It is a material element of the
national integrity and sovereignty.

I have adopted such precautionary measures and have taken such action
for the purpose of affording security to the several transit routes
of Central America and to the persons and property of citizens of
the United States connected with or using the same as are within my
constitutional power and as existing circumstances have seemed to
demand. Should these measures prove inadequate to the object, that
fact will be communicated to Congress with such recommendations as
the exigency of the case may indicate.

FRANKLIN PIERCE.

EXECUTIVE OFFICE,

_Washington, May 16, 1856_.

_To the Senate and House of Representatives_:

I communicate to Congress a report from the Secretary of the Interior,
containing estimates of appropriations required in the fulfillment of
treaty stipulations with certain Indian tribes, and recommend that the
appropriations asked for be made in the manner therein suggested.

FRANKLIN PIERCE.

WASHINGTON, _May 19, 1856_.

_To the House of Representatives_:

In compliance with a resolution of the House of Representatives of the
7th ultimo, requesting the President "to communicate what information he
may possess in regard to citizens of the United States being engaged in
the slave trade, or in the transportation in American ships of coolies
from China to Cuba and other countries with the intention of placing or
continuing them in a state of slavery or servitude, and whether such
traffic is not, in his opinion, a violation of the spirit of existing
treaties, rendering those engaged in it liable to indictment for piracy;
and especially that he be requested to communicate to this House the
facts and circumstances attending the shipment from China of some 500
coolies in the ship _Sea Witch_, of the city of New York, lately wrecked
on the coast of Cuba," I transmit the accompanying report of the
Secretary of State.

FRANKLIN PIERCE.

WASHINGTON, _May 20, 1856_.

_To the Senate of the United States_:

I transmit a copy of and extracts from dispatches of the late minister
of the United States at London, and of his correspondence with Lord
Clarendon which accompanied them, relative to the enlistment of soldiers
for the British army within the United States by agents of the
Government of Great Britain. These dispatches have been received since
my message to the Senate upon the subject of the 2th of February last.

FRANKLIN PIERCE.

WASHINGTON, _May 22, 1856_.

_To the House of Representatives_:

I communicate herewith a report from the Secretary of War, in response
to a resolution of the House of Representatives of the 12th instant,
requesting me to inform the House "whether United States soldiers have
been employed in the Territory of Kansas to arrest persons charged with
a violation of certain supposed laws enacted by a supposed legislature
assembled at Shawnee Mission."

FRANKLIN PIERCE.

WASHINGTON, _May 29, 1856_.

_To the Senate and House of Representatives_:

I have ceased to hold intercourse with the envoy extraordinary and
minister plenipotentiary of Her Majesty the Queen of the United Kingdom
of Great Britain and Ireland near this Government.

In making communication of this fact it has been deemed by me proper
also to lay before Congress the considerations of indispensable public
duty which have led to the adoption of a measure of so much importance.
They appear in the documents herewith transmitted to both Houses.

FRANKLIN PIERCE.

WASHINGTON, _May 29, 1856_.

_To the Senate of the United States_:

In further answer to the resolution of the Senate of the 17th of January
last, requesting a copy of any official correspondence not previously
communicated touching the construction and purport of the convention
between the United States and Great Britain of the 19th of April, 1850,
I transmit a copy of an instruction of the 24th instant from the
Secretary of State to the minister of the United States at London.

FRANKLIN PIERCE.

WASHINGTON, _June 3, 1856_.

_To the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States_:

I herewith communicate a letter of the 26th instant from the Secretary
of the Interior, and accompanying papers, relative to the conflict of
jurisdiction between the Federal and Cherokee courts and the inadequacy
of protection against the intrusion of improper persons into the
Cherokee country, and recommend the subject to the consideration of
Congress.

FRANKLIN PIERCE.

WASHINGTON, _June 3, 1856_.

_To the House of Representatives_:

I transmit a report[59] from the Secretary of State, in answer to a
resolution of the House of Representatives of the 29th ultimo.

FRANKLIN PIERCE.

[Footnote 59: Stating that no information relative to the action of
the leading powers of Europe on the subject of privateering has been
officially communicated by any foreign government.]

WASHINGTON, _June 4, 1856_.

_To the House of Representatives_:

In answer to the resolution of the House of Representatives of the
8th of last month, requesting information in regard to a contemplated
imposition of additional duties on American leaf tobacco by the
Zollverein or Commercial Union of the German States, I transmit a report
from the Secretary of State, to whom the resolution was referred.

FRANKLIN PIERCE.

WASHINGTON, _June 13, 1856_.

_To the House of Representatives_:

In compliance with a resolution of the House of Representatives of the
18th of February last, requesting me to communicate to the House "the
report of Captain E.B. Boutwell, and all the documents accompanying it,
relative to the operations of the United States sloop of war _John
Adams_, under his command, at the Fejee Islands in the year 1855,"
I transmit herewith a report of the Secretary of the Navy.

FRANKLIN PIERCE.

WASHINGTON, _June 18, 1856_.

_To the Senate of the United States_:

I transmit a report from the Secretary of State, with accompanying
documents,[60] in answer to the resolution of the Senate of the 16th
instant.

FRANKLIN PIERCE.

[Footnote 60: Instructions to Mr Buchanan, late minister to England,
on the subject of free ships making free goods, and letter from Mr.
Buchanan to Lord Clarendon on the same subject.]

WASHINGTON, _June 20, 1856_.

_To the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States_:

I communicate herewith a letter from the Secretary of the Interior and
accompanying papers, respecting the sum of $16,024.80 now in the hands
of the agent of the Choctaw Indians, being a balance remaining from the
sales of Choctaw orphan reservations under the nineteenth article of the
treaty of 1830, and commend the subject to the favorable consideration
of Congress.

FRANKLIN PIERCE.

WASHINGTON, _June 23, 1856_.

_To the Senate of the United States_:

I transmit to the Senate, for its consideration with a view to
ratification, a convention for the mutual delivery of criminals
fugitives from justice in certain cases, and for other purposes,
concluded at The Hague on the 29th ultimo between the United States
and His Majesty the King of the Netherlands.

FRANKLIN PIERCE.

WASHINGTON, _July 3, 1856_.

_To the House of Representatives of the United States_:

In response to a resolution of the House of Representatives of the 18th
ultimo, requesting me to inform the House "what measures, if any, have
been taken to carry out the provisions of a late act of Congress
authorizing the President to contract with Hiram Powers, the great
American sculptor, now in Italy, for some work of art for the new
Capitol, and appropriating $25,000 for that purpose," I transmit
herewith copies of three letters--one from Mr. Powers to Hon. Edward
Everett and two from myself to the same gentleman.

Since the date of my letter of July 24, 1855, I have communicated with
Mr. Everett upon the subject verbally and in writing, and the final
proposition on my part, resulting therefrom, will be found in the
accompanying extract of a letter dated June 5, 1856.

FRANKLIN PIERCE.

WASHINGTON, _July 7 1856_.

_To the Senate of the United States_:

In compliance with a resolution of the Senate of the 6th ultimo,
respecting the location of the District armory upon the Mall in this
city, I transmit the accompanying report from the Secretary of War.

FRANKLIN PIERCE.

WASHINGTON, _July 7, 1856_.

_To the Senate of the United States_:

I transmit to the Senate, for its consideration with a view to
ratification, a convention for the mutual delivery of criminals
fugitives from justice between the United States and Austria, signed
in this city on the 3d instant.

FRANKLIN PIERCE.

WASHINGTON, _July 8, 1856_.

_To the House of Representatives_:

I communicate herewith a report of the Secretary of War, in reply to a
resolution of the House of the 25th ultimo, "on the subject of Indian
hostilities in Oregon and Washington Territories."

FRANKLIN PIERCE.

WASHINGTON, _July 11, 1856_.

_To the Senate of the United States_:

In reply to a resolution of the Senate of May 23, requesting a "detailed
statement of the sums which have been paid to newspapers published in
Washington for advertisements or other printing published or executed
under the orders or by authority of the several Departments since the
4th day of March, 1853," I communicate herewith reports from the several
Departments.

FRANKLIN PIERCE.

WASHINGTON, _July 15, 1856_.

_To the Senate and House of Representatives_:

I transmit a copy of a letter of November 27, 1854, from the
commissioner of the United States in China, and of the regulations,
orders, and decrees which accompanied it, for such revision thereof as
Congress may deem expedient, pursuant to the sixth section of the act
approved August 11, 1848.

FRANKLIN PIERCE.

EXECUTIVE OFFICE,

_Washington, July 21, 1856_.

_To the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States_:

I communicate to Congress herewith a letter from the Postmaster-General
and a copy of a conditional contract entered into under instructions
from me for the purchase of a lot and building thereon for a post-office
in the city of Philadelphia, together with a copy of a report of Edward
Clark, architect of the Patent Office building, in relation to the site
and building selected, and recommend that an appropriation of $250,000
be made to complete the purchase, and also an appropriation of $50,000
to make the required alterations and furnish the necessary cases, boxes,
etc., to fit it up for a city post-office.

FRANKLIN PIERCE.

WASHINGTON, _July 22, 1856_.

_To the Senate of the United States_:

I transmit to the Senate, for its consideration with a view to
ratification, a treaty of friendship, commerce, navigation, and
extradition between the United States and the Republic of Chili,
signed at Santiago, in that Republic, on the 27th of May last.

FRANKLIN PIERCE.

WASHINGTON, _July 24, 1856_.

_To the Senate and House of Representatives_:

I herewith present to Congress a copy of "minutes of a council held
at Fort Pierre, Nebraska Territory, on the 1st day of March, 1856,
by Brevet Brigadier-General William S. Harney, United States Army,
commanding the Sioux expedition, with the delegations from nine of the
bands of the Sioux;" also copies of sundry papers upon the same subject.

Regarding the stipulations between General Harney and the nine bands of
the Sioux as just and desirable, both for the United States and for the
Indians, I respectfully recommend an appropriation by Congress of the
sum of $100,000 to enable the Government to execute the stipulations
entered into by General Harney.

FRANKLIN PIERCE.

WASHINGTON, _July 29, 1856_.

_To the Senate of the United States_:

I herewith lay before the Senate, for its constitutional action thereon,
a treaty made and concluded at Muckl-te-oh, or Point Elliott, by Isaac
I. Stevens, governor and superintendent of Indian affairs of Washington
Territory, on the part of the United States, and chiefs, headmen, and
delegates of the Dwamish, Suquamish, Sk-tahl-mish, Sam-ahmish,
Smalh-kamish, Skope-ahmish, St-kah-mish, Snoqualmoo, Skai-wha-mish,
N'Quentl-ma-mish, Sk-tah-le-jum, Stoluck-wha-mish, Sno-ho-mish, Ska-git,
Kik-i-allus, Swin-a-mish, Squin-ah-mish, Sah-ku-mehu, Noo-wha-ha,
Nook-wa-chah-mish, Mee-see-qua-guilch, Cho-bah-ah-bish, and other allied
and subordinate tribes and bands of Indians in said Territory.

Also a treaty made and concluded at Hahd Skus, or Point no Point, on the
26th day of January, 1855, by and between the same commissioner on the
part of the United States and the chiefs, headmen, and delegates of the
different villages of the S'Klallams Indians in said Territory.

Also a treaty made and concluded at Neah Bay on the 31st day of January,
1855, by and between the same commissioner on the part of the United
States and the chiefs, headmen, and delegates of the same villages of
the Makah tribe of Indians in the said Territory.

FRANKLIN PIERCE.

WASHINGTON, _July 29, 1856_.

_To the Senate of the United States_:

I herewith lay before the Senate, for its constitutional action thereon,
a treaty made and concluded by and between Isaac I. Stevens, governor
and superintendent of Indian affairs of the Territory of Washington, on
the part of the United States, and the chiefs, headmen, and delegates
of the different tribes and bands of the Qui-nai-elt and Quil-leh-ute
Indians in Washington Territory.

Said treaty was made on the 1st of July, 1855, and 25th January, 1856.

FRANKLIN PIERCE.

WASHINGTON, _July 29, 1856_.

_To the Senate of the United States_:

I herewith lay before the Senate, for its constitutional action thereon,
a treaty made and concluded at the treaty ground at Hell Gate, in the
Bitter Root Valley, on the 16th day of July, 1855, by and between Isaac
I. Stevens, governor and superintendent of Indian affairs for the
Territory of Washington, on the part of the United States, and the
chiefs, headmen, and delegates of the confederate tribes of the
Flathead, Koo-tenay, and Upper Pend d'Oreilles Indians, who by the
treaty are constituted a nation, under the name of the Flat Head Nation.

FRANKLIN PIERCE.

WASHINGTON, _July 29, 1856_.

_To the Senate of the United States_:

I herewith lay before the Senate, for its constitutional action thereon,
a treaty made and concluded at Wasco, near the Dalles of the Columbia
River, in Oregon Territory, by and between Joel Palmer, superintendent
of Indian affairs, on the part of the United States, and the chiefs
and headmen of the confederated tribes and bands of Walla-Wallas and
Was-coes Indians residing in middle Oregon. Said treaty was made on
the 25th day of June, 1855.

FRANKLIN PIERCE.

WASHINGTON, _July 29, 1856_.

_To the Senate of the United States_:

I herewith lay before the Senate, for its constitutional action thereon,
a treaty made and concluded on the 21st day of December, 1855, by and
between Joel Palmer, superintendent of Indian affairs, on the part of
the United States, and the chiefs and headmen of the Mo-lal-la-las, or
Molel, tribe of Indians in Oregon Territory.

FRANKLIN PIERCE.

WASHINGTON, _July 29, 1856_.

_To the Senate of the United States_:

I herewith lay before the Senate, for its constitutional action thereon,
a treaty made on the 9th of June, 1855, by and between Isaac I. Stevens,
governor and superintendent of Indian affairs of the Territory of
Washington, and Joel Palmer, superintendent of Indian affairs of the
Territory of Oregon, on the part of the United States, and the chiefs,
headmen, and delegates of the Walla-Wallas, Cayuses, and Umatilla tribes
and bands of Indians, who for the purposes of the treaty are to be
regarded as one nation. Also a treaty made on the 11th of June, 1855, by
and between the same commissioners on the part of the United States and
the chiefs, headmen, and delegates of the Nez Perce tribe of Indians.

The lands ceded by the treaties herewith lie partly in Washington and
partly in Oregon Territories.

FRANKLIN PIERCE.

WASHINGTON, _July 29, 1856_.

_To the Senate of the United States_:

I herewith lay before the Senate, for its constitutional action thereon,
a treaty made and concluded at Camp Stevens, Walla Walla Valley, on the
9th day of June, 1855, by and between Isaac I. Stevens, governor of and
superintendent of Indian affairs for Washington Territory, on the part
of the United States, and the head chiefs, chiefs, headmen, and
delegates of the Yakama, Palouse, Pisquouse, Wenatshapam, Klikatat,
Klin-quit, Kow-was-say-ee, Li-ay-was, Skin-pah, Wish-ham, Shyiks,
Oche-chotes, Kah-milt-pah, and Se-ap-cat tribes and bands of Indians,
who for the purposes of the treaty are to be known as the "Yakama"
Nation of Indians.

FRANKLIN PIERCE.

WASHINGTON, _July 30, 1856_.

_To the Senate of the United States_:

By the sixteenth article of the treaty of 4th March, 1853, between the
United States and the Republic of Paraguay, as amended by a resolution
of the Senate of the 1st May, 1854, it was provided that the exchange
of the ratifications of that instrument should be effected within
twenty-four months of its date; that is, on or before the 4th
March, 1855.

From circumstances, however, over which the Government of the United
States had no control, but which are not supposed to indicate any
indisposition on the part of the Paraguayan Government to consummate
the final formalities necessary to give full force and validity to the
treaty, the exchange of ratifications has not yet been effected.

A similar condition exists in regard to the treaty between the United
States and the Oriental Republic of Uruguay of the 28th August, 1852.
The Senate, by a resolution of 13th June, 1854, extended the time within
which the ratifications of that treaty might be exchanged to thirty
months from its date. That limit, however, has expired, and the exchange
has not been effected.

I deem it expedient to direct a renewal of negotiations with the
Governments referred to, with a view to secure the exchange of the
ratifications of these important conventions. But as the limit
prescribed by the Senate in both cases has passed by, it is necessary
that authority be conferred on the Executive for that purpose.

I consequently recommend that the Senate sanction an exchange of the
ratifications of the treaties above mentioned at any time which may be
deemed expedient by the President within three years from the date of
the resolution to that effect.

FRANKLIN PIERCE.

WASHINGTON, _August 1, 1856_.

_To the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States_:

I communicate to Congress herewith the report of Major W.H. Emory,
United States commissioner, on the survey of the boundary between
the United States and the Republic of Mexico, referred to in the
accompanying letter of this date from the Secretary of the Interior.

FRANKLIN PIERCE.

EXECUTIVE OFFICE,

_Washington, August 4, 1856_.

_To the House of Representatives of the United States_:

I herewith lay before the House of Representatives a report of the
Secretary of War, in reply to a resolution of the House requesting
"information in regard to the construction of the Capitol and
Post-Office extensions."

FRANKLIN PIERCE.

EXECUTIVE OFFICE,

_August 4, 1856_.

_To the Senate of the United States_:

I communicate herewith a report of the Secretary of War, in response
to a resolution of the Senate calling for information in relation to
instructions "issued to any military officer in command in Kansas to
disperse any unarmed meeting of the people of that Territory, or to
prevent by military power any assemblage of the people of that
Territory."

FRANKLIN PIERCE.

WASHINGTON, _August 4, 1856_.

_To the Senate of the United States_:

In answer to the resolution of the Senate of the 1st instant, requesting
a copy of papers touching recent events in the Territory of Washington,
I transmit a report from the Secretary of State and the documents by
which it was accompanied.

FRANKLIN PIERCE.

EXECUTIVE OFFICE,

_Washington, August 6, 1856_.

_To the Senate of the United States_:

In compliance with a resolution of the Senate of the 28th ultimo,
requesting the President to inform the Senate in relation to any
application "by the governor of the State of California to maintain the
laws and peace of the said State against the usurped authority of an
organization calling itself the committee of vigilance in the city and
county of San Francisco," and also "to lay before the Senate whatever
information he may have in respect to the proceedings of the said
committee of vigilance," I transmit the accompanying reports from the
Secretary of State and the Secretary of the Navy.

FRANKLIN PIERCE.

WASHINGTON, _August 8, 1856_.

_To the Senate of the United States_:

I herewith submit to the Senate, for its constitutional action thereon,
a treaty negotiated with the Creek and Seminole Indians, together with
the accompanying papers.

FRANKLIN PIERCE.

WASHINGTON, _August 9, 1856_.

_To the Senate of the United States_:

With a message of the 23d of June last I transmitted, for the
consideration of the Senate, a convention for the mutual delivery
of criminals fugitives from justice in certain cases, and for other
purposes, concluded at The Hague on the 29th of May last between the
United States and His Majesty the King of the Netherlands. Deeming it
advisable to withdraw that instrument from the consideration of the
Senate, I request that it may be returned to me.

FRANKLIN PIERCE.

_To the Senate of the United States_:

I transmit to the Senate, for its consideration with a view to
ratification, a treaty of amity, commerce, and navigation, and for the
surrender of fugitive criminals, between the United States and the
Republic of Venezuela, signed at Caracas on the 10th of July last.

FRANKLIN PIERCE.

AUGUST 9, 1856.

WASHINGTON, _August 11, 1856_.

_To the Senate of the United States_:

In compliance with the resolution of the Senate of the 3d March, 1855,
requesting information relative to the proceedings of the commissioners
for the adjustment of claims under the convention with Great Britain of
the 8th of February, 1853, I transmit a report from the Secretary of
State, to whom the resolution was referred.

FRANKLIN PIERCE.

WASHINGTON, _August 11, 1856_.

_To the House of Representatives of the United States_:

I transmit herewith a report of the Secretary of War, in reply to a
resolution of the House of Representatives of May 26, 1856, in relation
to the Capitol and Post-Office extensions.

FRANKLIN PIERCE.

WASHINGTON, _August 12, 1856_.

_To the Senate of the United States_:

I transmit a report from the Secretary of State, with accompanying
papers,[61] in answer to the resolution of the Senate of yesterday.

FRANKLIN PIERCE.

[Footnote 61: Relating to "The declaration concerning maritime law,"
adopted by the plenipotentiaries of Great Britain, Austria, France,
Prussia, Russia, Sardinia, and Turkey at Paris April 16, 1856.]

WASHINGTON, _August 12, 1856_.

_To the Senate of the United States_:

In compliance with the resolution of the Senate of the 7th instant,
in relation to the refusal of the Government of Honduras to receive
a commercial agent from this country, I transmit a report from the
Secretary of State and the documents which accompanied it.

FRANKLIN PIERCE.

WASHINGTON, _August 13, 1856_.

_To the Senate and House of Representatives_:

I transmit herewith a communication from the Secretary of War, inclosing
a report of Captain M.C. Meigs, stating that the sum of $750,000 will be
necessary for the prosecution of the Capitol extension until the close
of the next session of Congress, and recommend that that amount may be
appropriated.

FRANKLIN PIERCE.

WASHINGTON, _August 15, 1856_.

_To the House of Representatives_:

In answer to the resolution of the House of Representatives of the 4th
instant, requesting a copy of letters and papers touching the pardons
or remission of the imprisonment of Daniel Drayton and Edward Sayres in
August, 1852, I transmit a report from the Secretary of State, to whom
the resolution was referred.

FRANKLIN PIERCE.

WASHINGTON, _August 15, 1856_.

_To the Senate and House of Representatives_:

I transmit herewith a report from the Secretary of War, in relation
to an error in a communication[62] of Captain Meigs.

FRANKLIN PIERCE.

[Footnote 62: Relating to the Capitol extension.]

WASHINGTON, _August 16, 1856_.

_To the Senate of the United States_:

In compliance with a resolution of the Senate of the 11th instant,
in relation to the public accounts of John C. Fremont, I transmit the
accompanying report from the Secretary of the Treasury, to whom the
resolution was referred.

FRANKLIN PIERCE.

WASHINGTON, _August 16, 1856_.

_To the House of Representatives_:

In compliance with a resolution of the House of Representatives of the
17th April, 1856, requesting me to have prepared and presented to the
House of Representatives "a statement showing the appropriations made
by the Thirty-first, Thirty-second, and Thirty-third Congresses,
distinguishing the appropriations made at each session of each Congress,
distinguishing also the appropriations made on the recommendations of
the President, heads of Departments, or heads of bureaus from those that
were made without such recommendation, and showing what expenditures
have been made by the Government in each fiscal year, commencing with
the 1st day of July, 1850, and ending on the 30th day of June, 1855; and
also what, if any, defalcations have occurred from the 30th day of June,
1850, to the 1st day of July, 1855, and the amount of such defalcations
severally, and such other information as may be in his power bearing
upon the matters above mentioned," I submit the following reports from
the Secretaries of the Treasury, War, Navy, and Interior Departments and
the Postmaster-General.

FRANKLIN PIERCE.

VETO MESSAGES.

WASHINGTON, _May 19, 1856_.

_To the Senate of the United States_:

I return herewith to the Senate, in which it originated, the bill
entitled "An act to remove obstructions to navigation in the mouth of
the Mississippi River at the Southwest Pass and Pass a l'Outre," which
proposes to appropriate a sum of money, to be expended under the
superintendence of the Secretary of War, "for the opening and keeping
open ship channels of sufficient capacity to accommodate the wants of
commerce through the Southwest Pass and Pass a l'Outre, leading from
the Mississippi River to the Gulf of Mexico."

In a communication addressed by me to the two Houses of Congress on the
30th of December, 1854, my views were exhibited in full on the subject
of the relation of the General Government to internal improvements.
I set forth on that occasion the constitutional impediments, which in
my mind are insuperable, to the prosecution of a system of internal
improvements by means of appropriations from the Treasury of the United
States, more especially the consideration that the Constitution does
not confer on the General Government any express power to make such
appropriations, that they are not a necessary and proper incident of
any of the express powers, and that the assumption of authority on
the part of the Federal Government to commence and carry on a general
system of internal improvements, while exceptionable for the want of
constitutional power, is in other respects prejudicial to the several
interests and inconsistent with the true relation to one another of
the Union and of the individual States.

These objections apply to the whole system of internal improvements,
whether such improvements consist of works on land or in navigable
waters, either of the seacoast or of the interior lakes or rivers.

I have not been able, after the most careful reflection, to regard the
bill before me in any other light than as part of a general system of
internal improvements, and therefore feel constrained to submit it,
with these objections, to the reconsideration of Congress.

FRANKLIN PIERCE.

WASHINGTON, _May 19, 1856_.

_To the Senate of the United States_:

I return herewith to the Senate, in which it originated, a bill
entitled "An act making an appropriation for deepening the channel
over the St. Clair flats, in the State of Michigan," and submit it for
reconsideration, because it is, in my judgment, liable to the objections
to the prosecution of internal improvements by the General Government
which have already been presented by me in previous communications to
Congress.

In considering this bill under the restriction that the power of
Congress to construct a work of internal improvement is limited to cases
in which the work is manifestly needful and proper for the execution
of some one or more of the powers expressly delegated to the General
Government, I have not been able to find for the proposed expenditure
any such relation, unless it be to the power to provide for the common
defense and to maintain an army and navy. But a careful examination of
the subject, with the aid of information officially received since my
last annual message was communicated to Congress, has convinced me that
the expenditure of the sum proposed would serve no valuable purpose as
contributing to the common defense, because all which could be effected
by it would be to afford a channel of 12 feet depth and of so temporary
a character that unless the work was done immediately before the
necessity for its use should arise it could not be relied on for the
vessels of even the small draft the passage of which it would permit.

Under existing circumstances, therefore, it can not be considered
as a necessary means for the common defense, and is subject to those
objections which apply to other works designed to facilitate commerce
and contribute to the convenience and local prosperity of those more
immediately concerned--an object not to be constitutionally and justly
attained by the taxation of the people of the whole country.

FRANKLIN PIERCE.

WASHINGTON, _May 22, 1856_.

_To the Senate of the United States_:

Having considered the bill, which originated in the Senate, entitled "An
act making an appropriation for deepening the channel over the flats of
the St. Marys River, in the State of Michigan," it is herewith returned
without my approval.

The appropriation proposed by this bill is not, in my judgment, a
necessary means for the execution of any of the expressly granted powers
of the Federal Government. The work contemplated belongs to a general
class of improvements, embracing roads, rivers, and canals, designed
to afford additional facilities for intercourse and for the transit of
commerce, and no reason has been suggested to my mind for excepting
it from the objections which apply to appropriations by the General
Government for deepening the channels of rivers wherever shoals or other
obstacles impede their navigation, and thus obstruct communication
and impose restraints upon commerce within the States or between the
States or Territories of the Union. I therefore submit it to the
reconsideration of Congress, on account of the same objections which
have been presented in my previous communications on the subject of
internal improvements.

FRANKLIN PIERCE.

WASHINGTON, _August 11, 1856_.

_To the House of Representatives_:

I return herewith to the House of Representatives, in which it
originated, a bill entitled "An act for continuing the improvement of
the Des Moines Rapids, in the Mississippi River," and submit it for
reconsideration, because it is, in my judgment, liable to the objections
to the prosecution of internal improvements by the General Government
set forth at length in a communication addressed by me to the two Houses
of Congress on the 30th day of December, 1854, and in other subsequent
messages upon the same subject, to which on this occasion I respectfully
refer.

FRANKLIN PIERCE.

WASHINGTON, _August 14, 1856_.

_To the Senate of the United States_:

I return herewith to the Senate, in which it originated, a bill entitled
"An act for the improvement of the navigation of the Patapsco River and
to render the port of Baltimore accessible to the war steamers of the
United States," and submit it for reconsideration, because it is, in
my judgment, liable to the objections to the prosecution of internal
improvements by the General Government set forth at length in a
communication addressed by me to the two Houses of Congress on the
30th day of December, 1854, and other subsequent messages upon the
same subject, to which on this occasion I respectfully refer.

FRANKLIN PIERCE.

PROCLAMATIONS.

BY THE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA.

A PROCLAMATION.

Whereas information has been received by me that sundry persons,
citizens of the United States and others resident therein, are
preparing, within the jurisdiction of the same, to enlist, or enter
themselves, or to hire or retain others to participate in military
operations within the State of Nicaragua:

Now, therefore, I, Franklin Pierce, President of the United States, do
warn all persons against connecting themselves with any such enterprise
or undertaking, as being contrary to their duty as good citizens and to
the laws of their country and threatening to the peace of the United
States.

I do further admonish all persons who may depart from the United States,
either singly or in numbers, organized or unorganized, for any such
purpose, that they will thereby cease to be entitled to the protection
of this Government.

I exhort all good citizens to discountenance and prevent any such
disreputable and criminal undertaking as aforesaid, charging all
officers, civil and military, having lawful power in the premises,
to exercise the same for the purpose of maintaining the authority
and enforcing the laws of the United States.

In testimony whereof I have hereunto set my hand and caused the seal
of the United States to be affixed to these presents.

[SEAL.]

Done at the city of Washington, the 8th day of December, 1855, and
of the Independence of the United States the eightieth.

FRANKLIN PIERCE.

By the President:
W.L. MARCY,
_Secretary of State_.

BY THE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA.

A PROCLAMATION.

Whereas on the second section of an act of the Congress of the United
States approved the 5th day of August, 1854, entitled "An act to carry
into effect a treaty between the United States and Great Britain signed
on the 5th day of June, 1854," it is provided that whenever the island
of Newfoundland shall give its consent to the application of the
stipulations and provisions of the said treaty to that Province and the
legislature thereof and the Imperial Parliament shall pass the necessary
laws for that purpose, grain, flour, and breadstuffs of all kinds;
animals of all kinds; fresh, smoked, and salted meats; cotton wool,
seeds and vegetables, undried fruits, dried fruits, fish of all kinds,
products of fish and all other creatures living in the water, poultry,
eggs; hides, furs, skins, or tails, undressed; stone or marble in its
crude or unwrought state, slate, butter, cheese, tallow, lard, horns,
manures, ores of metals of all kinds, coal, pitch, tar, turpentine,
ashes; timber and lumber of all kinds, round, hewed, and sawed,
unmanufactured in whole or in part; firewood; plants, shrubs, and trees;
pelts, wool, fish oil, rice, broom corn, and bark; gypsum, ground or
unground; hewn or wrought or unwrought burr or grind stones, dyestuffs;
flax, hemp, and tow, unmanufactured; unmanufactured tobacco, and
rags--shall be admitted free of duty from that Province into the United
States from and after the date of a proclamation by the President of the
United States declaring that he has satisfactory evidence that the said
Province has consented in a due and proper manner to have the provisions
of the treaty extended to it and to allow the United States the full
benefits of all the stipulations therein contained; and

Whereas I have satisfactory evidence that the Province of Newfoundland
has consented in a due and proper manner to have the provisions of the
aforesaid treaty extended to it and to allow the United States the full
benefits of all the stipulations therein contained, so far as they are
applicable to that Province:

Now, therefore, I, Franklin Pierce, President of the United States of
America, do hereby declare and proclaim that from this date the articles
enumerated in the preamble of this proclamation, being the growth and
produce of the British North American colonies, shall be admitted from
the aforesaid Province of Newfoundland into the United States free of
duty so long as the aforesaid treaty shall remain in force.

In testimony whereof I have hereunto set my hand and caused the seal
of the United States to be affixed to these presents.

[SEAL.]

Done at the city of Washington, the 12th day of December, A.D. 1855,
and of the Independence of the United States the eightieth.

FRANKLIN PIERCE.

By the President:
W.L. MARCY,
_Secretary of State_.

BY THE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA.

A PROCLAMATION.

Whereas indications exist that public tranquillity and the supremacy of
law in the Territory of Kansas are endangered by the reprehensible acts
or purposes of persons, both within and without the same, who propose
to direct and control its political organization by force. It appearing
that combinations have been formed therein to resist the execution of
the Territorial laws, and thus in effect subvert by violence all present
constitutional and legal authority; it also appearing that persons
residing without the Territory, but near its borders, contemplate armed
intervention in the affairs thereof; it also appearing that other
persons, inhabitants of remote States, are collecting money, engaging
men, and providing arms for the same purpose; and it further appearing
that combinations within the Territory are endeavoring, by the agency of
emissaries and otherwise, to induce individual States of the Union to
intervene in the affairs thereof, in violation of the Constitution of
the United States; and

Whereas all such plans for the determination of the future institutions
of the Territory, if carried into action from within the same, will
constitute the fact of insurrection, and if from without that of
invasive aggression, and will in either case justify and require the
forcible interposition of the whole power of the General Government,
as well to maintain the laws of the Territory as those of the Union:

Now, therefore, I, Franklin Pierce, President of the United States, do
issue this my proclamation to command all persons engaged in unlawful
combinations against the constituted authority of the Territory of
Kansas or of the United States to disperse and retire peaceably to their
respective abodes, and to warn all such persons that any attempted
insurrection in said Territory or aggressive intrusion into the same
will be resisted not only by the employment of the local militia, but
also by that of any available forces of the United States, to the end
of assuring immunity from violence and full protection to the persons,
property, and civil rights of all peaceable and law-abiding inhabitants
of the Territory.

If, in any part of the Union, the fury of faction or fanaticism,
inflamed into disregard of the great principles of popular sovereignty
which, under the Constitution, are fundamental in the whole structure
of our institutions is to bring on the country the dire calamity of
an arbitrament of arms in that Territory, it shall be between lawless
violence on the one side and conservative force on the other, wielded
by legal authority of the General Government.

I call on the citizens, both of adjoining and of distant States, to
abstain from unauthorized intermeddling in the local concerns of the
Territory, admonishing them that its organic law is to be executed with
impartial justice, that all individual acts of illegal interference
will incur condign punishment, and that any endeavor to intervene by
organized force will be firmly withstood.

I invoke all good citizens to promote order by rendering obedience
to the law, to seek remedy for temporary evils by peaceful means,
to discountenance and repulse the counsels and the instigations of
agitators and of disorganizers, and to testify their attachment to
their country, their pride in its greatness, their appreciation of
the blessings they enjoy, and their determination that republican
institutions shall not fail in their hands by cooperating to uphold the
majesty of the laws and to vindicate the sanctity of the Constitution.

In testimony whereof I have hereunto set my hand and caused the seal
of the United States to be affixed to these presents.

[SEAL.]

Done at the city of Washington, the 11th day of February, A.D. 1856,
and of the Independence of the United States the eightieth.

FRANKLIN PIERCE.

By the President:
W.L. MARCY,
_Secretary of State_.

FRANKLIN PIERCE, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA.

_To all whom it may concern_:

Whereas by letters patent under the seal of the United States bearing
date the 2d day of March, A.D. 1843, the President recognized Anthony
Barclay as consul of Her Britannic Majesty at New York and declared him
free to exercise and enjoy such functions, powers, and privileges as are
allowed to the consuls of the most favored nations, but, for good and
sufficient reasons, it is deemed proper that he should no longer
exercise the said functions within the United States:

Now, therefore, be it known that I, Franklin Pierce, President of
the United States of America, do hereby declare that the powers and
privileges conferred as aforesaid on the said Anthony Barclay are
revoked and annulled.

In testimony whereof I have caused these letters to be made patent and
the seal of the United States to be hereunto affixed.

[SEAL.]

Given under my hand, at the city of Washington, the 28th day of May,
A.D. 1856, and of the Independence of the United States of America
the eightieth.

FRANKLIN PIERCE.

By the President:
W.L. MARCY,
_Secretary of State_.

FRANKLIN PIERCE, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA.

_To all whom it may concern_:

Whereas by letters patent under the seal of the United States bearing
date the 2d day of August, A.D. 1853, the President recognized George
Benvenuto Mathew as consul of Her Britannic Majesty at Philadelphia and
declared him free to exercise and enjoy such functions, powers, and
privileges as are allowed to the consuls of the most favored nations,
but, for good and sufficient reasons, it is deemed proper that he should
no longer exercise the said functions within the United States:

Now, therefore, be it known that I, Franklin Pierce, President of
the United States of America, do hereby declare that the powers and
privileges conferred as aforesaid on the said George Benvenuto Mathew
are revoked and annulled.

In testimony whereof I have caused these letters to be made patent and
the seal of the United States to be hereunto affixed.

[SEAL.]

Given under my hand, at the city of Washington, the 28th day of May,
A.D. 1856, and of the Independence of the United States of America
the eightieth.

FRANKLIN PIERCE.

By the President:
W.L. MARCY,
_Secretary of State_.

FRANKLIN PIERCE, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA.

_To all whom it may concern_:

Whereas by letters patent under the seal of the United States bearing
date the 17th day of August, A.D. 1852, the President recognized Charles
Rowcroft as consul of Her Britannic Majesty at Cincinnati and declared
him free to exercise and enjoy such functions, powers, and privileges as
are allowed to the consuls of the most favored nations, but, for good
and sufficient reasons, it is deemed proper that he should no longer
exercise the said functions within the United States:

Now, therefore, be it known that I, Franklin Pierce, President of
the United States of America, do hereby declare that the powers and
privileges conferred as aforesaid on the said Charles Rowcroft are
revoked and annulled.

In testimony whereof I have caused these letters to be made patent and
the seal of the United States to be hereunto affixed.

[SEAL.]

Given under my hand, at the city of Washington, the 28th day of May,
A.D. 1856, and of the Independence of the United States of America
the eightieth.

FRANKLIN PIERCE.

By the President:
W.L. MARCY,
_Secretary of State_.

BY THE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA.

A PROCLAMATION.

Whereas, pursuant to the first article of the treaty between the United
States and the Mexican Republic of the 30th day of December, 1853, the
true limits between the territories of the contracting parties were
declared to be as follows:

Retaining the same dividing line between the two Californias as already
defined and established according to the fifth article of the treaty of
Guadalupe Hidalgo, the limits between the two Republics shall be as
follows:

Beginning in the Gulf of Mexico 3 leagues from land, opposite the mouth
of the Rio Grande, as provided in the fifth article of the treaty of
Guadalupe Hidalgo; thence, as defined in the said article, up the middle
of that river to the point where the parallel of 31 deg. 47' north latitude
crosses the same; thence due west 100 miles; thence south to the
parallel of 31 deg. 20' north latitude; thence along the said parallel of
31 deg. 20' to the one hundred and eleventh meridian of longitude west of
Greenwich; thence in a straight line to a point on the Colorado River 20
English miles below the junction of the Gila and Colorado rivers; thence
up the middle of the said river Colorado until it intersects the present
line between the United States and Mexico.

And whereas the said dividing line has been surveyed, marked out, and
established by the respective commissioners of the contracting parties,
pursuant to the same article of the said treaty:

Now, therefore, be it known that I, Franklin Pierce, President of the
United States of America, do hereby declare to all whom it may concern
that the line aforesaid shall be held and considered as the boundary
between the United States and the Mexican Republic and shall be
respected as such by the United States and the citizens thereof.

In testimony whereof I have caused the seal of the United States to be
hereunto affixed.

[SEAL.]

Given under my hand, at the city of Washington, this 2d day of June,
A.D. 1856, and of the Independence of the United States the eightieth.

FRANKLIN PIERCE.

By the President:
W.L. MARCY,
_Secretary of State_.

BY THE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA.

A PROCLAMATION.

Whereas whilst hostilities exist with various Indian tribes on the
remote frontiers of the United States, and whilst in other respects the
public peace is seriously threatened, Congress has adjourned without
granting necessary supplies for the Army, depriving the Executive of
the power to perform his duty in relation to the common defense and
security, and an extraordinary occasion has thus arisen for assembling
the two Houses of Congress, I do therefore by this my proclamation
convene the said Houses to meet in the Capitol, at the city of
Washington, on Thursday, the 21st day of August instant, hereby
requiring the respective Senators and Representatives then and there
to assemble to consult and determine on such measures as the state of
the Union may seem to require.

In testimony whereof I have caused the seal of the United States to be
hereunto affixed and signed the same with my hand.

[SEAL.]

Done at the city of Washington, the 18th day of August, A.D. 1856, and
of the Independence of the United States the eighty-first.

FRANKLIN PIERCE.

By order:
W.L. MARCY,
_Secretary of State_.

SPECIAL SESSION MESSAGE.

WASHINGTON, _August 21, 1856_.

_Fellow-Citizens of the Senate and House of Representatives_:

In consequence of the failure of Congress at its recent session to make
provision for the support of the Army, it became imperatively incumbent
on me to exercise the power which the Constitution confers on the
Executive for extraordinary occasions, and promptly to convene the two
Houses in order to afford them an opportunity of reconsidering a subject
of such vital interest to the peace and welfare of the Union.

With the exception of a partial authority vested by law in the Secretary
of War to contract for the supply of clothing and subsistence, the Army
is wholly dependent on the appropriations annually made by Congress.
The omission of Congress to act in this respect before the termination of
the fiscal year had already caused embarrassments to the service, which
were overcome only in expectation of appropriations before the close
of the present month. If the requisite funds be not speedily provided,
the Executive will no longer be able to furnish the transportation,
equipments, and munitions which are essential to the effectiveness of a
military force in the field. With no provision for the pay of troops the
contracts of enlistment would be broken and the Army must in effect be
disbanded, the consequences of which would be so disastrous as to demand
all possible efforts to avert the calamity.

It is not merely that the officers and enlisted men of the Army are to
be thus deprived of the pay and emoluments to which they are entitled by
standing laws; that the construction of arms at the public armories, the
repair and construction of ordnance at the arsenals, and the manufacture
of military clothing and camp equipage must be discontinued, and the
persons connected with this branch of the public service thus be
deprived suddenly of the employment essential to their subsistence;
nor is it merely the waste consequent on the forced abandonment of the
seaboard fortifications and of the interior military posts and other
establishments, and the enormous expense of recruiting and reorganizing
the Army and again distributing it over the vast regions which it now
occupies. These are evils which may, it is true, be repaired hereafter
by taxes imposed on the country; but other evils are involved, which no
expenditures, however lavish, could remedy, in comparison with which
local and personal injuries or interests sink into insignificance.

A great part of the Army is situated on the remote frontier or in the
deserts and mountains of the interior. To discharge large bodies of men
in such places without the means of regaining their homes, and where
few, if any, could obtain subsistence by honest industry, would be to
subject them to suffering and temptation, with disregard of justice and
right most derogatory to the Government.

In the Territories of Washington and Oregon numerous bands of Indians
are in arms and are waging a war of extermination against the white
inhabitants; and although our troops are actively carrying on the
campaign, we have no intelligence as yet of a successful result. On the
Western plains, notwithstanding the imposing display of military force
recently made there and the chastisement inflicted on the rebellious
tribes, others, far from being dismayed, have manifested hostile
intentions and been guilty of outrages which, if not designed to provoke
a conflict, serve to show that the apprehension of it is insufficient
wholly to restrain their vicious propensities. A strong force in the
State of Texas has produced a temporary suspension of hostilities there,
but in New Mexico incessant activity on the part of the troops is
required to keep in check the marauding tribes which infest that
Territory. The hostile Indians have not been removed from the State of
Florida, and the withdrawal of the troops therefrom, leaving that object
unaccomplished, would be most injurious to the inhabitants and a breach
of the positive engagement of the General Government.

To refuse supplies to the Army, therefore, is to compel the complete
cessation of all its operations and its practical disbandment, and thus
to invite hordes of predatory savages from the Western plains and the
Rocky Mountains to spread devastation along a frontier of more than
4,000 miles in extent and to deliver up the sparse population of a vast
tract of country to rapine and murder.

Such, in substance, would be the direct and immediate effects of
the refusal of Congress, for the first time in the history of the
Government, to grant supplies for the maintenance of the Army--the
inevitable waste of millions of public treasure; the infliction of
extreme wrong upon all persons connected with the military establishment
by service, employment, or contracts; the recall of our forces from the
field; the fearful sacrifice of life and incalculable destruction of
property on the remote frontiers; the striking of our national flag
on the battlements of the fortresses which defend our maritime cities
against foreign invasion; the violation of the public honor and good
faith, and the discredit of the United States in the eyes of the
civilized world.

I confidently trust that these considerations, and others appertaining
to the domestic peace of the country which can not fail to suggest
themselves to every patriotic mind, will on reflection be duly
appreciated by both Houses of Congress and induce the enactment of the
requisite provisions of law for the support of the Army of the United
States.

FRANKLIN PIERCE.

SPECIAL MESSAGE.

EXECUTIVE OFFICE,

_Washington, August 21, 1856_.

_To the Senate and House of Representatives_:

I transmit herewith a letter from the Secretary of War, in relation to
the balances remaining in the Treasury from the last appropriation for
the support of the Army.

FRANKLIN PIERCE.

FOURTH ANNUAL MESSAGE.

WASHINGTON, _December 2, 1856_.

_Fellow-Citizens of the Senate and of the House of Representatives_:

The Constitution requires that the President shall from time to time not
only recommend to the consideration of Congress such measures as he may
judge necessary and expedient, but also that he shall give information
to them of the state of the Union. To do this fully involves exposition
of all matters in the actual condition of the country, domestic or
foreign, which essentially concern the general welfare. While performing
his constitutional duty in this respect, the President does not speak
merely to express personal convictions, but as the executive minister of
the Government, enabled by his position and called upon by his official
obligations to scan with an impartial eye the interests of the whole and
of every part of the United States.

Of the condition of the domestic interests of the Union--its agriculture,
mines, manufactures, navigation, and commerce--it is necessary only to
say that the internal prosperity of the country, its continuous and
steady advancement in wealth and population and in private as well
as public well-being, attest the wisdom of our institutions and the
predominant spirit of intelligence and patriotism which, notwithstanding
occasional irregularities of opinion or action resulting from popular
freedom, has distinguished and characterized the people of America.

In the brief interval between the termination of the last and the
commencement of the present session of Congress the public mind has been
occupied with the care of selecting for another constitutional term the
President and Vice-President of the United States.

The determination of the persons who are of right, or contingently, to
preside over the administration of the Government is under our system
committed to the States and the people. We appeal to them, by their
voice pronounced in the forms of law, to call whomsoever they will to
the high post of Chief Magistrate.

And thus it is that as the Senators represent the respective States of
the Union and the members of the House of Representatives the several
constituencies of each State, so the President represents the aggregate
population of the United States. Their election of him is the explicit
and solemn act of the sole sovereign authority of the Union.

It is impossible to misapprehend the great principles which by their
recent political action the people of the United States have sanctioned
and announced.

They have asserted the constitutional equality of each and all of the
States of the Union as States; they have affirmed the constitutional
equality of each and all of the citizens of the United States as
citizens, whatever their religion, wherever their birth or their
residence; they have maintained the inviolability of the constitutional
rights of the different sections of the Union, and they have proclaimed
their devoted and unalterable attachment to the Union and to the
Constitution, as objects of interest superior to all subjects of local
or sectional controversy, as the safeguard of the rights of all, as the
spirit and the essence of the liberty, peace, and greatness of the
Republic.

In doing this they have at the same time emphatically condemned the idea
of organizing in these United States mere geographical parties, of
marshaling in hostile array toward each other the different parts of the
country, North or South, East or West.

Schemes of this nature, fraught with incalculable mischief, and which
the considerate sense of the people has rejected, could have had
countenance in no part of the country had they not been disguised by
suggestions plausible in appearance, acting upon an excited state of the
public mind, induced by causes temporary in their character and, it is
to be hoped, transient in their influence.

Perfect liberty of association for political objects and the widest
scope of discussion are the received and ordinary conditions of
government in our country. Our institutions, framed in the spirit
of confidence in the intelligence and integrity of the people, do not
forbid citizens, either individually or associated together, to attack
by writing, speech, or any other methods short of physical force the
Constitution and the very existence of the Union. Under the shelter
of this great liberty, and protected by the laws and usages of the
Government they assail, associations have been formed in some of the
States of individuals who, pretending to seek only to prevent the spread
of the institution of slavery into the present or future inchoate States
of the Union, are really inflamed with desire to change the domestic
institutions of existing States. To accomplish their objects they
dedicate themselves to the odious task of depreciating the government
organization which stands in their way and of calumniating with
indiscriminate invective not only the citizens of particular States with
whose laws they find fault, but all others of their fellow-citizens
throughout the country who do not participate with them in their
assaults upon the Constitution, framed and adopted by our fathers, and
claiming for the privileges it has secured and the blessings it has
conferred the steady support and grateful reverence of their children.
They seek an object which they well know to be a revolutionary one.
They are perfectly aware that the change in the relative condition of
the white and black races in the slaveholding States which they would
promote is beyond their lawful authority; that to them it is a foreign
object; that it can not be effected by any peaceful instrumentality of
theirs; that for them and the States of which they are citizens the
only path to its accomplishment is through burning cities, and ravaged
fields, and slaughtered populations, and all there is most terrible in
foreign complicated with civil and servile war; and that the first step
in the attempt is the forcible disruption of a country embracing in its
broad bosom a degree of liberty and an amount of individual and public
prosperity to which there is no parallel in history, and substituting in
its place hostile governments, driven at once and inevitably into mutual
devastation and fratricidal carnage, transforming the now peaceful and
felicitous brotherhood into a vast permanent camp of armed men like the
rival monarchies of Europe and Asia. Well knowing that such, and such
only, are the means and the consequences of their plans and purposes,
they endeavor to prepare the people of the United States for civil war
by doing everything in their power to deprive the Constitution and the
laws of moral authority and to undermine the fabric of the Union by
appeals to passion and sectional prejudice, by indoctrinating its people
with reciprocal hatred, and by educating them to stand face to face as
enemies, rather than shoulder to shoulder as friends.

It is by the agency of such unwarrantable interference, foreign and
domestic, that the minds of many otherwise good citizens have been so
inflamed into the passionate condemnation of the domestic institutions
of the Southern States as at length to pass insensibly to almost equally
passionate hostility toward their fellow-citizens of those States, and
thus finally to fall into temporary fellowship with the avowed and
active enemies of the Constitution. Ardently attached to liberty in the
abstract, they do not stop to consider practically how the objects they
would attain can be accomplished, nor to reflect that, even if the evil
were as great as they deem it, they have no remedy to apply, and that it
can be only aggravated by their violence and unconstitutional action.
A question which is one of the most difficult of all the problems of
social institution, political economy, and statesmanship they treat
with unreasoning intemperance of thought and language. Extremes beget
extremes. Violent attack from the North finds its inevitable consequence
in the growth of a spirit of angry defiance at the South. Thus in the
progress of events we had reached that consummation, which the voice of
the people has now so pointedly rebuked, of the attempt of a portion of
the States, by a sectional organization and movement, to usurp the
control of the Government of the United States.

I confidently believe that the great body of those who inconsiderately
took this fatal step are sincerely attached to the Constitution and the
Union. They would upon deliberation shrink with unaffected horror from
any conscious act of disunion or civil war. But they have entered into
a path which leads nowhere unless it be to civil war and disunion, and
which has no other possible outlet. They have proceeded thus far in
that direction in consequence of the successive stages of their progress
having consisted of a series of secondary issues, each of which
professed to be confined within constitutional and peaceful limits, but
which attempted indirectly what few men were willing to do directly;
that is, to act aggressively against the constitutional rights of
nearly one-half of the thirty-one States.

In the long series of acts of indirect aggression, the first was the
strenuous agitation by citizens of the Northern States, in Congress and
out of it, of the question of negro emancipation in the Southern States.

The second step in this path of evil consisted of acts of the people
of the Northern States, and in several instances of their governments,
aimed to facilitate the escape of persons held to service in the
Southern States and to prevent their extradition when reclaimed
according to law and in virtue of express provisions of the
Constitution. To promote this object, legislative enactments and other
means were adopted to take away or defeat rights which the Constitution
solemnly guaranteed. In order to nullify the then existing act of
Congress concerning the extradition of fugitives from service, laws were
enacted in many States forbidding their officers, under the severest
penalties, to participate in the execution of any act of Congress
whatever. In this way that system of harmonious cooperation between the
authorities of the United States and of the several States, for the
maintenance of their common institutions, which existed in the early
years of the Republic was destroyed; conflicts of jurisdiction came to
be frequent, and Congress found itself compelled, for the support of
the Constitution and the vindication of its power, to authorize the
appointment of new officers charged with the execution of its acts, as
if they and the officers of the States were the ministers, respectively,
of foreign governments in a state of mutual hostility rather than
fellow-magistrates of a common country peacefully subsisting under the
protection of one well-constituted Union. Thus here also aggression was
followed by reaction, and the attacks upon the Constitution at this
point did but serve to raise up new barriers for its defense and
security.

The third stage of this unhappy sectional controversy was in
connection with the organization of Territorial governments and
the admission of new States into the Union. When it was proposed to
admit the State of Maine, by separation of territory from that of
Massachusetts, and the State of Missouri, formed of a portion of the
territory ceded by France to the United States, representatives in
Congress objected to the admission of the latter unless with conditions
suited to particular views of public policy. The imposition of such a
condition was successfully resisted; but at the same period the question
was presented of imposing restrictions upon the residue of the territory
ceded by France. That question was for the time disposed of by the
adoption of a geographical line of limitation.

In this connection it should not be forgotten that when France, of
her own accord, resolved, for considerations of the most far-sighted
sagacity, to cede Louisiana to the United States, and that accession was
accepted by the United States, the latter expressly engaged that "the
inhabitants of the ceded territory shall be incorporated in the Union
of the United States and admitted as soon as possible, according to the
principles of the Federal Constitution, to the enjoyment of all the
rights, advantages, and immunities of citizens of the United States;
and in the meantime they shall be maintained and protected in the free
enjoyment of their _liberty, property_, and the religion which they
profess;" that is to say, while it remains in a Territorial condition
its inhabitants are maintained and protected in the free enjoyment of
their liberty and property, with a right then to pass into the condition
of States on a footing of perfect equality with the original States.

The enactment which established the restrictive geographical line was
acquiesced in rather than approved by the States of the Union. It stood
on the statute book, however, for a number of years; and the people of
the respective States acquiesced in the reenactment of the principle as
applied to the State of Texas, and it was proposed to acquiesce in its
further application to the territory acquired by the United States
from Mexico. But this proposition was successfully resisted by the
representatives from the Northern States, who, regardless of the statute
line, insisted upon applying restriction to the new territory generally,
whether lying north or south of it, thereby repealing it as a
legislative compromise, and, on the part of the North, persistently
violating the compact, if compact there was.

Thereupon this enactment ceased to have binding virtue in any sense,
whether as respects the North or the South, and so in effect it was
treated on the occasion of the admission of the State of California and
the organization of the Territories of New Mexico, Utah, and Washington.

Such was the state of this question when the time arrived for the
organization of the Territories of Kansas and Nebraska. In the progress
of constitutional inquiry and reflection it had now at length come to
be seen clearly that Congress does not possess constitutional power to
impose restrictions of this character upon any present or future State
of the Union. In a long series of decisions, on the fullest argument and
after the most deliberate consideration, the Supreme Court of the United
States had finally determined this point in every form under which the
question could arise, whether as affecting public or private rights--in
questions of the public domain, of religion, of navigation, and of
servitude.

The several States of the Union are by force of the Constitution coequal
in domestic legislative power. Congress can not change a law of domestic
relation in the State of Maine; no more can it in the State of Missouri.
Any statute which proposes to do this is a mere nullity; it takes away
no right, it confers none. If it remains on the statute book unrepealed,
it remains there only as a monument of error and a beacon of warning to
the legislator and the statesman. To repeal it will be only to remove
imperfection from the statutes, without affecting, either in the sense
of permission or of prohibition, the action of the States or of their
citizens.

Still, when the nominal restriction of this nature, already a dead
letter in law, was in terms repealed by the last Congress, in a clause
of the act organizing the Territories of Kansas and Nebraska, that
repeal was made the occasion of a widespread and dangerous agitation.

It was alleged that the original enactment being a compact of perpetual
moral obligation, its repeal constituted an odious breach of faith.

An act of Congress, while it remains unrepealed, more especially if it
be constitutionally valid in the judgment of those public functionaries
whose duty it is to pronounce on that point, is undoubtedly binding on
the conscience of each good citizen of the Republic. But in what sense
can it be asserted that the enactment in question was invested with
perpetuity and entitled to the respect of a solemn compact? Between whom
was the compact? No distinct contending powers of the Government, no
separate sections of the Union treating as such, entered into treaty
stipulations on the subject. It was a mere clause of an act of Congress,
and, like any other controverted matter of legislation, received its
final shape and was passed by compromise of the conflicting opinions or
sentiments of the members of Congress. But if it had moral authority
over men's consciences, to whom did this authority attach? Not to those
of the North, who had repeatedly refused to confirm it by extension
and who had zealously striven to establish other and incompatible
regulations upon the subject. And if, as it thus appears, the supposed
compact had no obligatory force as to the North, of course it could not
have had any as to the South, for all such compacts must be mutual and
of reciprocal obligation.

It has not unfrequently happened that lawgivers, with undue estimation
of the value of the law they give or in the view of imparting to it
peculiar strength, make it perpetual in terms; but they can not thus
bind the conscience, the judgment, and the will of those who may succeed
them, invested with similar responsibilities and clothed with equal
authority. More careful investigation may prove the law to be unsound
in principle. Experience may show it to be imperfect in detail and
impracticable in execution. And then both reason and right combine
not merely to justify but to require its repeal.

The Constitution, supreme, as it is, over all the departments of the
Government--legislative, executive, and judicial--is open to amendment
by its very terms; and Congress or the States may, in their discretion,
propose amendment to it, solemn compact though it in truth is between
the sovereign States of the Union. In the present instance a political
enactment which had ceased to have legal power or authority of any kind
was repealed. The position assumed that Congress had no moral right to
enact such repeal was strange enough, and singularly so in view of the
fact that the argument came from those who openly refused obedience
to existing laws of the land, having the same popular designation and
quality as compromise acts; nay, more, who unequivocally disregarded
and condemned the most positive and obligatory injunctions of the
Constitution itself, and sought by every means within their reach to
deprive a portion of their fellow-citizens of the equal enjoyment of
those rights and privileges guaranteed alike to all by the fundamental
compact of our Union.

This argument against the repeal of the statute line in question was
accompanied by another of congenial character and equally with the
former destitute of foundation in reason and truth. It was imputed that
the measure originated in the conception of extending the limits of
slave labor beyond those previously assigned to it, and that such was
its natural as well as intended effect; and these baseless assumptions
were made, in the Northern States, the ground of unceasing assault upon
constitutional right.

The repeal in terms of a statute, which was already obsolete and also
null for unconstitutionality, could have no influence to obstruct or
to promote the propagation of conflicting views of political or social
institution. When the act organizing the Territories of Kansas and
Nebraska was passed, the inherent effect upon that portion of the
public domain thus opened to legal settlement was to admit settlers
from all the States of the Union alike, each with his convictions of
public policy and private interest, there to found, in their discretion,
subject to such limitations as the Constitution and acts of Congress
might prescribe, new States, hereafter to be admitted into the Union.
It was a free field, open alike to all, whether the statute line of
assumed restriction were repealed or not. That repeal did not open to
free competition of the diverse opinions and domestic institutions a
field which without such repeal would have been closed against them;
it found that field of competition already opened, in fact and in law.
All the repeal did was to relieve the statute book of an objectionable
enactment, unconstitutional in effect and injurious in terms to a large
portion of the States.

Is it the fact that in all the unsettled regions of the United States,
if emigration be left free to act in this respect for itself, without
legal prohibitions on either side, slave labor will spontaneously go
everywhere in preference to free labor? Is it the fact that the peculiar
domestic institutions of the Southern States possess relatively so much
of vigor that wheresoever an avenue is freely opened to all the world
they will penetrate to the exclusion of those of the Northern States?
Is it the fact that the former enjoy, compared with the latter, such
irresistibly superior vitality, independent of climate, soil, and all
other accidental circumstances, as to be able to produce the supposed
result in spite of the assumed moral and natural obstacles to its
accomplishment and of the more numerous population of the Northern
States?

The argument of those who advocate the enactment of new laws of
restriction and condemn the repeal of old ones in effect avers that
their particular views of government have no self-extending or
self-sustaining power of their own, and will go nowhere unless forced by
act of Congress. And if Congress do but pause for a moment in the policy
of stern coercion; if it venture to try the experiment of leaving men to
judge for themselves what institutions will best suit them; if it be not
strained up to perpetual legislative exertion on this point--if Congress
proceed thus to act in the very spirit of liberty, it is at once charged
with aiming to extend slave labor into all the new Territories of the
United States.

Of course these imputations on the intentions of Congress in this
respect, conceived, as they were, in prejudice and disseminated in
passion, are utterly destitute of any justification in the nature of
things and contrary to all the fundamental doctrines and principles of
civil liberty and self-government.

While, therefore, in general, the people of the Northern States
have never at any time arrogated for the Federal Government the
power to interfere directly with the domestic condition of persons
in the Southern States, but, on the contrary, have disavowed all such
intentions and have shrunk from conspicuous affiliation with those few
who pursue their fanatical objects avowedly through the contemplated
means of revolutionary change of the Government and with acceptance of
the necessary consequences--a civil and servile war--yet many citizens
have suffered themselves to be drawn into one evanescent political issue
of agitation after another, appertaining to the same set of opinions,
and which subsided as rapidly as they arose when it came to be seen, as
it uniformly did, that they were incompatible with the compacts of the
Constitution and the existence of the Union. Thus when the acts of some
of the States to nullify the existing extradition law imposed upon
Congress the duty of passing a new one, the country was invited by
agitators to enter into party organization for its repeal; but that
agitation speedily ceased by reason of the impracticability of its
object. So when the statute restriction upon the institutions of new
States by a geographical line had been repealed, the country was urged
to demand its restoration, and that project also died almost with its
birth. Then followed the cry of alarm from the North against imputed
Southern encroachments, which cry sprang in reality from the spirit of
revolutionary attack on the domestic institutions of the South, and,
after a troubled existence of a few months, has been rebuked by the
voice of a patriotic people.

Of this last agitation, one lamentable feature was that it was carried
on at the immediate expense of the peace and happiness of the people of
the Territory of Kansas. That was made the battlefield, not so much of
opposing factions or interests within itself as of the conflicting
passions of the whole people of the United States. Revolutionary
disorder in Kansas had its origin in projects of intervention
deliberately arranged by certain members of that Congress which enacted
the law for the organization of the Territory; and when propagandist
colonization of Kansas had thus been undertaken in one section of the
Union for the systematic promotion of its peculiar views of policy there
ensued as a matter of course a counteraction with opposite views in
other sections of the Union.

In consequence of these and other incidents, many acts of disorder,
it is undeniable, have been perpetrated in Kansas, to the occasional
interruption rather than the permanent suspension of regular government.
Aggressive and most reprehensible incursions into the Territory were
undertaken both in the North and the South, and entered it on its
northern border by the way of Iowa, as well as on the eastern by way
of Missouri; and there has existed within it a state of insurrection
against the constituted authorities, not without countenance from
inconsiderate persons in each of the great sections of the Union. But
the difficulties in that Territory have been extravagantly exaggerated
for purposes of political agitation elsewhere. The number and gravity of
the acts of violence have been magnified partly by statements entirely
untrue and partly by reiterated accounts of the same rumors or facts.
Thus the Territory has been seemingly filled with extreme violence,
when the whole amount of such acts has not been greater than what
occasionally passes before us in single cities to the regret of all
good citizens, but without being regarded as of general or permanent
political consequence.

Imputed irregularities in the elections had in Kansas, like occasional
irregularities of the same description in the States, were beyond the
sphere of action of the Executive. But incidents of actual violence or
of organized obstruction of law, pertinaciously renewed from time to
time, have been met as they occurred by such means as were available and
as the circumstances required, and nothing of this character now remains
to affect the general peace of the Union. The attempt of a part of the
inhabitants of the Territory to erect a revolutionary government, though
sedulously encouraged and supplied with pecuniary aid from active agents
of disorder in some of the States, has completely failed. Bodies of
armed men, foreign to the Territory, have been prevented from entering
or compelled to leave it; predatory bands, engaged in acts of rapine
under cover of the existing political disturbances, have been arrested
or dispersed, and every well-disposed person is now enabled once more to
devote himself in peace to the pursuits of prosperous industry, for the
prosecution of which he undertook to participate in the settlement of
the Territory.

It affords me unmingled satisfaction thus to announce the peaceful
condition of things in Kansas, especially considering the means to which
it was necessary to have recourse for the attainment of the end, namely,
the employment of a part of the military force of the United States. The
withdrawal of that force from its proper duty of defending the country
against foreign foes or the savages of the frontier to employ it for

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