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upon the several component interests of its neighbors. Thus, the legislation of Great Britain, when, as has recently been avowed, adapted to the depression of a rival nation, will naturally abound with regulations of interdict upon the productions of the soil or industry of the other which come in competition with its own; and will present encouragement, perhaps even bounty, to the raw material of the other state, which it cannot produce itself, and which is essential for the use of its manufactures, competitors in the markets of the world with those of its commercial rival. Such is the state of the commercial legislation of Great Britain as it bears upon our interests. It excludes, with interdicting duties, all importation (except in time of approaching famine) of the great staple productions of our middle and western states; it proscribes with equal rigor, bulkier lumber and live stock of the same portion, and also of the northern and eastern part of our Union. It refuses even the rice of the south, unless aggravated with a charge of duty upon the northern carrier who brings it to them. But the cotton, indispensable for their looms, they will receive almost duty free, to weave it into a fabric for our own wear, to the destruction of our own manufactures, which they are enabled thus to undersell.

Is the self-protecting energy of this nation so helpless that there exists in the political institutions of our country no power to counteract the bias of this foreign legislation that the growers of grain must submit to this exclusion from the foreign markets of their produce; that the shippers must dismantle their ships, the trade of the north stagnate at the wharves, and the manufacturers starve at their looms, while the whole people shall pay tribute to foreign industry, to be clad in a foreign garb; that the Congress of the Union are impotent to restore the balance in favor of native industry, destroyed by the statutes of another realm?. More just and more generous sentiments will, I trust, prevail. If the tariff adopted at the last session of Congress shall be found by experience to bear oppressively upon the interests of any one section of the Union, it ought to be, and I cannot doubt will be, so modified as to alleviate its burden. To the voice of just complaint from any portion of their constituents, the representatives of the states and people will never turn away their ears. But so long as the duty of the foreign shall operate only as a bounty upon the domestic article,—while the planter, and the merchant, and the shepherd, and the husbandman, shall be found thriving in their occupations under the duties imposed for the protection of domestic manufactures, they will not repine at the prosperity shared with themselves by their fellow citizens of other professions, nor denounce as violations of the constitution, the deliberate acts of Congress to shield from the wrongs of foreign laws the native industry of the Union. While the tariff of the last session of Congress was a subject of legislative deliberation, it was foretold by some of its opposers that one of its necessary consequences would be to impair the revenue. It is yet too soon to pronounce with confidence that this prediction was erroneous. The obstruction of one avenue of trade not unfrequently opens an issue to another. The consequence of the tariff will be to increase the exportation, and to diminish the importation of some specific articles. But, by the general law of trade, the increase of exportation of one article will be followed by an increased importation of others, the duties upon which will supply the deficiencies which the diminished importation would otherwise occasion. The effect of

upon revenue can seldom be foreseen with certainty. It must abide the test of experience. As yet no symptoms of diminution are perceptible


in the receipts of the treasury. As yet, little addition of cost has even been experienced upon the article burdened with heavier duties by the last tariff. The domestic manufacturer supplies the same or a kindred article at a diminished price, and the consumer pays the same tribute to the labor of his own countryman which he must otherwise have paid to foreign industry and toil.

The tariff of the last session was, in its details, not acceptable to the great interests of any portion of the Union, not even to the interests which it was specially intended to subserve. Its object was to balance the burdens upon native industry imposed by the operation of foreign laws; but not to aggravate the burdens of one section of the Union by the relief afforded to another. To the great principle sanctioned by that act, one of those upon which the constitution itself was formed, I hope and trust the authorities of the Union will adhere, But if any of the duties imposed by the act only relieve the manufacturer by aggravating the burden of the planter, let a careful revisal of its provisions, enlightened by the practical experience of its effects, be directed to retain those which impart protection to native industry, and remove or supply the place of those which only alleviate one great national interest by the depression of another.

The United States of America, and the people of every state of which they are composed, are each of them sovereign powers. The legislative author ity of the whole is exercised by Congress under authority granted them in the common constitution. The legislative power of each state is exercised by assemblies deriving their authority from the constitution of the state. Each is sovereign within its own province. The distribution of power between them presupposes that these authorities will move in harmony with each other. The members of the state and general government are all under oath to support both, and allegiance is due to the one and to the other. The case of a conflict between these two powers has not been supposed; nor has any provision been made for it in our institutions; as a virtuous nation of ancient times existed more than five centuries without a law for the punishment of parricide.

More than once, however, in the progress of our history, have the people and legislatures of one or more states, in moments of excitement, been instigated to this conflict; and the means of effecting this impulse have been allegations that the acts of Congress to be resisted were unconstilutional The people of no one state have ever delegated to their legislature the power of pronouncing an act of Congress unconstitutional; but they have dele gated to them powers, by the exercise of which the execution of the laws of Congress within the state may be resisted. If we suppose the case of such conflicting legislation sustained by the corresponding executive and judicial authorities, patriotism and philanthropy turn their eyes from the condition in which the parties would be placed, and from that of the people of both, which must be its victims.

The reports from the secretary of war, and from the various subordinate offices of the resort of that department, present an exposition of the publie administration of affairs connected with them, through the course of the current year. The present state of the army, and the distribution of the force of which it is composed, will be seen from the report of the major general. Several alterations in the disposal of the troops have been found expedient in the course of the year, and the discipline of the army, though not entirely free from exception, has been generally good.

The attention of Congress is particularly invited to that part of the report of the secretary of war which concerns the existing system of our relations with the Indian tribes. At the establishment of the federal government, under the present constitution of the United States, the principle was adopted of considering them as foreign and independent powers, and also as proprietors of land. They were, moreover, considered as savages, whom it was our policy and our duty to use our influence in converting to Christianity, and in bringing within the pale of civilization.

As independent powers, we negotiated with them by treaties; as proprietors, we purchased of them all the lands which we could prevail upon them to sell ; as brethren of the human race, rude and ignorant, we endeavored to bring them to the knowledge of religion and letters The ultimate design was to incorporate in our own institutions that portion of them which could be converted to the state of civilization. In the practice of European states, before our revolution, they bad been considered as children to be governed; as tenants at discretion, to be dispossessed as occasion might require; as hunters, to be indemnified by trifling concessions for removal from the grounds upon which their game was extirpated. In changing the system, it would seem as if a full contemplation of the consequences of the change had not been taken. We have been far more successful in the acquisition of their lands than in imparting to them the principles, or inspiring them with the spirit of civilization. But in appropriating to ourselves their hunting.grounds, we have brought upon ourselves the obligation of providing them with subsistence; and when we have had the rare good fortune of teaching them the arts of civilization, and the doctrines of Christianity, we have unexpectedly found them forming in the midst of ourselves communities claiming to be independent of ours, and rivals of sovereignty within the territories of the members of our Union. This state of things requires that a remedy should be provided, a remedy which, while it shall do justice to those unfortunate children of nature, may secure to the members of our confederation their rights of sovereignty and of soil. As the outline of a project to that effect, the views presented in the report of the secretary of war are recommended to the consideration of Congress.

The report from the engineer department presents a comprehensive view of the progress which has been made in the great systems promotive of the public interests, commenced and organized under the authority of Congress, and the effects of which have already contributed to the security, as they will hereafter largely contribute to the honor and dignity of the nation.

The first of these great systems is that of fortifications, commenced immediately after the close of our last war, under the salutary experience which the events of that war had impressed upon our countrymen of its necessity. Introduced under the auspices of my immediate predecessor, it has been con. tinued with the persevering and liberal encouragement of the legislature; and combined with corresponding exertions for the gradual increase and improvement of the navy, prepares for our extensive country a condition of defence adapted to any critical emergency which the varying course of events may bring forth. Our advances in these concerted systems have for the last ten years been steady and progressive; and in a few years more will be so completed as to leave no cause for apprehension that our sea-coast will ever again offer a theatre of hostile invasion. The next of those cardinal measures of policy is the preliminary to great

and lasting works of public improvement, in the surveys of roads, examinations for the course of canals, and labors for the removal of the obstructions of rivers and harbors, first commenced by the act of Congress of 30th April

, 1824.

The report exhibits in one table the funds appropriated at the last and preceding sessions of Congress, for all these fortifications, surveys, and works of public improvement; the manner in which these funds have been applied, the amount expended upon the several works under construction, and the farther sums which may be necessary to complete them. In a second, the works projected by the board of engineers, which have not been coinmenced, and the estimate of their cost.

In a third, the report of the annual board of visiters at the military acade my at West Point. For thirteen fortifications erecting on various points of our Atlantic coast, from Rhode Island to Louisiana, the aggregate expenditure of the year has fallen little short of one million of dollars.

For the preparation of five additional reports of reconnoissances and surveys since the last session of Congress, for the civil constructions upon thirty-seven different public works commenced, eight others for which spe cific appropriations have been made by acts of Congress, and twenty other incipient surveys under the authority given by the act of the 30th April, 1824, about one million more of dollars have been drawn from the treasury

To these two millions are to be added : the appropriation of two hundred and fifty thousand to commence the erection of a breakwater near the mouth of the Delaware river; the subscriptions to the Delaware and Chesapeake, the Louisville and Portland, the Dismal Swamp, and the Chesapeake and Ohio canals; the large donations of lands to the states of Ohio, Indiana, Illinois, and Alabama, for objects of improvements within those states, and the sums appropriated for light-houses, buoys, and piers, on the coast; and a full view will be taken of the munificence of the nation in the application of its resources to the improvement of its own condition.

Of these great national undertakings, the academy at West Point is among the most important in itself, and the most comprehensive in its consequences In that institution, a part of the revenue of the nation is applied to defray the expense of educating a competent portion of her youth, chiefly to the knowledge and the duties of military life. It is the living armory of the nation. While the other works of improvement enumerated in the reports now presented to the attention of Congress are destined to ameliorate the face of nature; to multiply the facilities of communication between the different parts of the Union; to assist the labors, increase the comforts, and enhance the enjoyments of individuals—the instruction acquired at West Point enlarges the dominion and expands the capacities of the mind. Its beneficial results are already experienced in the composition of the army, and their influence is felt in the intellectual progress of society. The institution is susceptible still of great improvement from benefactions proposed by several successive boards of visiters, to whose earnest and repeated recommendations I cheerfully add my own.

With the usual annual reports of the secretary of the navy, and the board of commissioners, will be exhibited to the view of Congress the execution of the laws relating to that department of the public service. The repression of piracy in the West Indian and Grecian seas has been effectually maintained, with scarcely any exception. During the war between the governments of Buenos Ayres and Brazil

, frequent collisions between bel

ligerent acts of power and the rights of neutral commerce occurred. Licentious blockades, irregularly enlisted or impressed seamen, and the property of honest commerce seized with violence, and even plundered under legal pretences, are disorders never separable from the conflicts of war upon the ocean, With a portion of them, the correspondence of our commanders on the eastern aspect of the South American coasts, and among the islands of Greece, discover how far we have been involved. In these, the honor of our country and rights of our citizens have been asserted and vindicated. The appearance of new squadrons in the Mediterranean, and the blockade of the Dardanelles, indicate the danger of other obstacles to the freedom of commerce and the necessity of keeping our naval force in those seas. To the suggestions repeated in the report of the secretary of the navy, and tending to the permanent improvement of this institution, I invite the favorable consideration of Congress.

A resolution of the House of Representatives, requesting that one of our small public vessels should be sent to the Pacific ocean, and South sea, to examine the coasts, islands, harbors, shoals, and reefs, in those seas, and to ascertain their true situation and description, has been put in a train of execution. The vessel is nearly ready to depart; the successful accomplishment of the expedition may be greatly facilitated by suitable legislative provisions; and particularly by an appropriation to defray its necessary expense. The addition of a second, and perhaps a third vessel, with a slight aggravation of the cost, would contribute much to the safety of the citizens embarked on this undertaking, the results of which may be of the deepest interest to our country.

With the report of the secretary of the navy will be submitted, in con. formity to the act of Congress of 3d March, 1827, for the gradual improvement of the navy of the United States, statements of the expenditures under that act, and of the measures taken for carrying the same into effect. Every section of that statute contains a distinct provision, looking to the great object of the whole, the gradual improvement of the navy. Under its salutary sanction, stores of ship-timber have been procured, and are in process of seasoning and preservation for the future uses of the navy. Arrangements have been made for the preservation of the live-oak timber growing on the lands of the United States, and for its reproduction, to supply at future and distant days, the waste of that most valuable material for ship-building, by the great consumption of it yearly for the commercial, as well as for the military marine of our country.

The construction of the two dry docks at Charleston and at Norfolk, is making satisfactory progress toward a durable establishment. The examinations and inquiries to ascertain the practicability and expediency of a marine railway at Pensacola, though not yet accomplished, have been postponed, but to be more effectually made. The navy yards of the United States have been examined, and plans for their improvement, and the preservation of the public property therein, at Portsmouth, Charleston, Philadelphia, Washington, and Gosport, and to which two others are to be added, have been prepared, and received my sanction; and no other portion of my public duties has been performed with a more intimate conviction of its importance to the future welfare and security of the Union.

With the report from the postmaster-general is exhibited a comparative view of the gradual increase of that establishment, from five to five years, since 1792, till this time, in the number of post-offices, which has grown from less than two hundred to nearly eight thousand; in the revenue yielded

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