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5th year's interest,
281,854 60 Jan. 1, 1851
2,169,587 44 Jan. 1, 1868 16,911 27
22nd year's interest, 130,175 24 50,000 00
23rd year's investment, 50,000 00
6th year's interest,
348,765 87 Jan. 1, 1852
2,349,762 68 Jan. 1, 1869 20,925 95
23rd year's interest, 140,985 75 50,000 00
24th year's investment, 50,000 00
748,582 02 Jan. 1, 1857
3,426,367 13 Jan. 1, 1874 11th year's interest, 44,914 92
28th year's interest, 205,582 02 12th year's investment, 50,000 00
29th year's investment, 50,000 00 843,496 94 Jan. 1, 1858
3,681,949 15 Jan. 1. 1875 12th year's interest,
29th year's interest, 220,916 94 50,609 81
50,000 00 13th year's investment, 50,000 00
30th year's investment,
3,952,866 09 Jan. 1, 1876 944,106 75 Jan. 1, 1859
30th year's interest, 237,171 96 13th year's interest, 56,646 40 14th year's investment, 50,000 00
Mr. PRESTON. 1,050,753 15 Jan. 1, 1860 President is one that will afford' me great plea
The proposition of the 14th year's interest, 63,045 18
sure to vote for. The gentleman from Nelson 15th year's investment, 50,000 00
seems to misunderstand me in regard to the price
obtained for our state bonds. I referred to the 1,163,798 33 Jan. 1, 1861 current prices of our stocks in the northern Mar15th year's interest, 69.827 89
kets, and they in common with others sunk in 16th year's investment, 50,000,00
the years '40' and '41, to about seventy cents on
the dollar. The contractors to whom those 1,283,626 22 Jan. 1, 1862 stocks were paid were compelled, I know, to sell 16th year's interest, 76,997 57
them at a heavy loss. The other gentleman 17th year's investment, 50,000 00
from Nelson. (Mr. C. A. Wickliffe,) seems to
think that there is some ambiguity in the lan1,410,623 79 Jan. 1, 1863 guage of the thirty second section. It was not
the intention of the committee to leave the 17th year's interest, 84,637 42 18th year's investment. 50,000 00
least ambiguity in that section, and if it does
exist it is not the fault of their intention. They 1.545,261 21 Jan. 1, 1864
intended not that the legislature each year should
contract a debt amounting to $500,000, but that 18th year's interest, 92,715 67
they should never in all time to come, contract a 19th year's investment, 50,000 00
debt exceeding that amount, so as to make it a
charge on the state. They intended that the 1,687,926 88 Jan. 1, 1865 legislature, meeting for instance next year, might 19th year's interest, 101,278 60
contract a debt to the amount of $500,000 and 20th year's investment, 50,000 00
pay it five years hence, if they chose, and then
there would be left them a margin of $500,000 1,839,255 48 Jan. 1, 1866 again to contract debts as the public emergencies might require, but declaring in the constitution the benefits it has conferred on the people. It is that they should not go beyond that unless they the fine roads, the improved navigation, and first submitted it to the people for their sanction. means of getting to and from market. That is Such was the intention of ihe committee, and it the way in which it is profitable to the people, strikes me that the language is not at all ambigu- and if ihere was not a cent of revenue derived ous, but if it is, the committee of revision can cor. from it, still it is a beneficial system to the coun. rect it. It is in the language of the constitution try, so far as it developes its resources and inof New York; we only altered two words in it, creases its wealth and prosperity. That at least which was to insert the words five hundred is my view of it. Before this turnpike system thousand instead of one million. We looked to was entered upon, and the country was sparsely the growing wealth of Kentucky, to the time settled, we could not travel in those sections of when she would have three millions of people the country where the soils are rich, until the living under this constitution on her soil, aud middle of May. And are we then to have no to the necessities that might arise in the progress more turnpike roads? To this it will be answerof many years, and thought certainly we were ed that they may be built by individual subscripnot giving to the legislature too much power. tion. In that case the expense will fall on a few We give this as a safety valve, through which generous men, and those who use it most will when the state was in difficulty they might ex: pay the least. I desire that the legislature shall clothe them with the power of creating a debt their share in the burdens of the country, and of $500,000 at each session, as the gentleman not leave them to be borne by the more generous from Nelson supposes. If that is not the signifi. and liberal men. cation of the section, then I do not understand As regards the proposition of the president, the force of language, and if it should be the I am in favor of it. I want to pay the debt, al. opinion of the convention that the language is though I am ready to admit that a great deal of susceptible of a different interpretation-then it it was imprudently contracted. Ten years ago, can be corrected by the committee of revision. when I attempted to point out some of the de
Mr. BARLOW. It meets not only my appro- fects of the system, such was its popularity that bation, but that of the people of my county, to the people were almost ready to hiss me from restrict the legislature in its power to involve the lobby. I found about here, some half a dozthe state in debt, and if I am instructed on any en little engineers with salaries of $600 to $1,one point in this convention, it is on that. And 000, and with nothing to do except to wait on these instructions were given me by my constitu- the great engineer, or to carry an order from one ents from the fact that the system of internal lock to another. And in some cases, the state improvements have created the debts which now itself engaged in cutting off timber by the river, exist and hang over them. I was a member of the instead of letting it out by contract, and there legislature about the time the system was com- were instances where it cost $600 or $800 per menced, and I invariably voted against it, and acre to do it, when the land and all would not took the occasion to speak against it when at have sold for one hundredth part of the money. home. I never voted for but one of these works, I attempted to point out these extravagancies at except on one occasion, and that was in obedi- the time, but I could not be heard, such was the ence to what I conceived to be the will of my blaze of glory in which the system was surrounconstituents, though my own feelings were well led. But still I desired that the system should known to be in opposition to the system. It be carried on, and I believe that even under was an appropriation to that beautiful stream, these disadvantages it has been benefical and the Cumberland river, of some $200,000, of prosperous to the people. There is the Green which not a cent, if my recollection serves me, river, once dried up for whole seasons, and where was ever expended. And yet my constituents a steamboat was a rarity, the convenience afforwere willing to contribute their part to paying ded to the inhabitants amply repays all the ex. the debt, and are not willing that it shall be re- pence incurred there. There are the fine turnpudiated. But at the same time, as a safeguard pike roads, through the land, enabling people to for the future, they desire that the legislature get about, and in proving the means of business shall be restricted in its power of again involv. and social intercourse, and which have taken the ing the people in debt.
place of the miserable, and alınost impassable Mr. TURNER. I never was a member of the dirt roads of former times. The same beneficial legislature but once, during the time the system results have been the consequence of the Kenof internal improvements was agitated, and then tucky river improvement. Why, the very reducI voted for it. I believe that system to have been tion in the price of groceries alone, to say nothbeneficial and profitable to the country, and I ing of the reduced price of transportation and never intend to give up anything because every the increased facilities of travel, would fully body is abandoning it, or because it becomes un repay to the people, the increased taxation these popular. I was for it in its popularity, and I works have imposed on them. These are the am for it still. I believe it to be a good system, advantages we derive, and they are worth double and that the country will never get along unless to the people, the money it cost to obtain them. it shall be fully carried out. Why, what is I raise my voice against this wholesale denunciathis system? I would rather pay my share of the tion of that system, which now seems to be so tax forone year, than be obliged in going home to popular in this convention, and shall continue be three or four days foundering along on horse. to advocate it, for the reasons I have given, if back through the mud. Gentlemen view this sys. every other man in the country opposes it. I am tem only as to the amount of money it brings into for paying this debt, and for the amendment of the treasury, but that is not the way to judge of the president, but I shall vote against the sections now under consideration. Not that I want the of the government, and then to borrow money legislature to go into extravagances, but I hope to pay that debt; but should there be a deficit in that in fifty years time we shall have on our soil the ordinary revenue of the country, then I am 3,000,000 of inhabitants, and are we to put a willing that the legislature shall borrow money straight jacket upon their energies, so that they to meet that emergency: can do nothing in the way of improvement when Upon the subject of internal improvements, the great emergencies of the country shall re- gentlemen are defining their positions, as if it quire it? Besides, the time may cone when, as was a matter of necessity to do so on the present has been the fate of almost every land, we shall occasion. I believe between the years '33 and be visited with famine and desease, and to such | ’37 there was not an internal improvement apan extent that the people will not be able to pay propriation that I did not vote for, and I do not their taxes, and yet gentlemen talk about pre- regret a vote that I then gave. I believe I voted venting the legislature from borrowing money right, and I think so now. But I believe it is to supply the deficiency. There are many emer- right now to meet the public sentiment of the gencies which may arise to produce a deficiency country, that we should impose on future legislain the revenue, and the legislature should have tion a restriction against the borrowing and approthe power of supplying that deficiency. I sup- priation of money for internal improvements. pose that the legislature will have some little dis- The gentleman from Madison has spoken about cretion, and that we in this convention do not turnpike roads in my county, and I should possess all the wisdom of the world.
like to know how much stock he owns in them. The gentleman from Nelson (Mr. Hardin) has Mr. TURNER. My stock is all in Madison said that we are a great body of wise men, but that county. is all soft soap, and we know it. We do not, at any Mr. C. A. WICKLIFFE. How much do you rate. stand so high in the estimation of those out own? of this convention, if one may judge from the Mr. TURNER. About one thousand dollars newspapers. It is all a mistake about our being of it. greater men than any who are to come after us. Mr. C. A. WICKLIFFE. Well, we are about A week or two ago, when the question of fixing in the same condition-I have unfortuuately salaries was under consideration, gentlemen about twice as much as he. urged that the legislature was an illiberal body, The PRESIDENT here modified his amend. and now we have the same gentlemen contend- ment to read asfollows: ing that it is a great deal too liberal. I think
“The general assembly that shall first convene the legislature can be trusted upon this subject, under this constitution, shall set apart an anand I hope the section will not be adopted. nual sum of at least $50,000, of the public reve. With regard to submitting the question to the nue; which shall be the first to be paid, and propeople, before incurring large indebtedness, 1 vide that the same and the surplus of the sinksee no objection. I have no objection to con- ing fund after paying the interest on the public sult the people on this subject, and I believe debt, shall be faithfully applied to the purchase they will not withhold their approval from any and withdrawal of the evidences of the debt of work of internal improvement that is calcula- this commonwealth, until the whole of said debt ted to enhance their convenience, their prosperi- shall be discharged: Provided, If the annual ty, or their wealth. I am not surprised that gen- sum so appropriated, shall not be sufficient to tlemen from portions of the commonwealth discharge the debt as it shall become due, the where this system has never reached, should op. general assembly shall have authority to create pose it; but as for gentlemen who have fine turn additional loans for the punctual payment of pike roads runniug through their county and in said debt: And, provided further, That the gentheir neighborhood, like the gentlemen from eral assembly shall have authority, except as Nelson, that they should turn against and repu- hereinafter provided, to contract other loans.” diate the system, I confess I am a little aston
Mr. JAMES. Many having availed them. ished. The elder gentleman, I know, stood here selves of this occasion to define their position in and warred against it for a good while, but if relation to the system of internal improve. the junior gentleman (Mr. C. A. Wickliffe.) didments, I shall take this opportunity to define not sustain it, then my memory has failed me. Normiue. I have come here prepared to redid I ever hear of tlie elder gentleman (Mr. Har. strict the power of the legislature to run the din) making war on him for so doing: I think state in debt, to the least possible amount. The when a man has derived all the benefit possible safest criterion to judge of the future, is to look from it to his county, he ought to be willing to to the past history of the country; and acting extend the same benfits to the people of the upon this rule, I think there is no one but will whole state. A contrary course is hardly gener- concur in the propriety of imposing some strin, ous or proper.
gent restriction on the debt creating power of Mr. C.A.WICKLIFFE. The amendment I have the legislature. I was in the legislature when proposed, is to make the section perform the office the system of internal improvements was origi;
understand the committee to desire it should nated, and even some years before. I first had that is, to limit the right of the legislature to bor- the honor of a seat in that body in the session row money to provide for deficits in the reven- of 1825–26, and was returned again in 1828. I ue—whether to $50,000 or $100,000, is a matter continued four years in the house, and was then of total indifference to me. I therefore moved elected to the senate, where I continued until to strike out the words to meet expenses not the year 1848. The first internal improvement provided for." I do not wish to leave to the project was made in the years 1828 and 29. legislature the power to create debts not expec. There was then a surplus in the treasury, real. ted by the people to meet the ordinary expenses lized from the profits of the Bank of the Commonwealth and the Bank of Kentucky, and a state iu an enormous debt, however auxious my proposition was made to distribute $200,000 of seetion of country might have been to secure å this surplus among the several counties, in pro- small pittance, I should most certainly have portion to the number of voters, for internal im- voted against it. What was done at the sucprovement purposes. I thought it a fair and ceeding session of the legislature? Why, the equitable distribution. I was representing a restriction requiring the appropriation of this section of country in which the Indian title had money in fair proportions to the three grand divi. just been extinguished, and which is comprised sions of the country, was repealed. But first let of the territory west of the Tennessee river, me call the attention of the convention to the known as "the purchase.” The Indian title twenty-seventh section of this bill: was extinguished in 1818, under what is known Sec. 27. That not exceeding two hundred as Jackson's treaty, and after an examination of thousand dollars of the scrip authorized to be that location. 1821, concluding that it offered a sold, shall be sold before the first day of Januafair opening for a young man to make a living, ry next; and not exceeding one-third of the resI removed thither with my family, in the year idue shall be sold in each of the three following succeeding. Then, the only roads through that years; nor shall the governor subscribe for more section of the country, were a few Indian trails; stock annually, thau he is hereby authorized to and down to 1828 and 1829 there were but few issue scrip for, as restrited by this act." roads, and the country was still thinly settled.
Gentlemen will see how well this act was The first settlers, for the want of bridges, were guarded. Of this million that was proposed to obliged to cross the streams on logs, or to swim be borrowed, not more than $200,000 could be their horses. No part of the commonwealth borrowed before the next session of the legislawas more in need of aid and assistance in these ture, and not exceeding one third of the residue respects, than that region of country. The bill could be borrowed in each of the three succeedof 1829, however, did not pass. In 1834, a ing years, and the governor could not go on and proposition originated in the house for the bor- subscribe for stock, so that not more than $200.rowing of a million of dollars. I was then rep. 000 could be borrowed prior to 1836. resenting my district in the senate, and two rep. This is the extent of my sinning, if any
I resentatives came to consult me at my room in have committed, on the subject of internal im. relation to it. They told me that the comunit-provements. I have stated the circumstances tee had agreed to set apart for our section, the under which I was induced to go for this proceeds of the vacant lands then remaining measure, and I confess that even then, I had some there. I made some further enquiries as to the misgivings as to the consequences that were to purpose and provisions of the bill. and they in
grow out of it. formed me, as well as they could. I told them
Well, after this restriction was taken off, what I would take the matter into consideration, and was the proposition made to the legislature? I give them an answer during the next day. When will read from the act of 1836, the twenty-sev
came to examine it, I discovered that the bill enth section: proposed an equitable and just distribution of
“Sec. 27. That the sum of five thousand dol. the money between the three grand divisions of lars be appropriated to the improvement of the state, and with a view of satisfying the com- Bayou du Chien; five thousand dollars be apmittee on that subject, allow me to read the four- propriated to the improvement of Clark’s river; teenth section of that bill:
one thousand five hundred dollars be appro. "Sec. 14. That the board of internal improve- priated to the improvement of Little Obion ment, in subscribing for stock under this act, and Mayfield's creek in the county of Hickman; in the several turnpike roads now chartered, or one thousand dollars be appropriated to the imwhich may be hereatter chartered, shall not sub-provement of Little Barren river: Provided, That scribe more than one-third of the sum hereby the board of internal improvement shall believe authorised to be borrowed, for the purpose of that the said improvements are expedient, and making such roads on the north side of Kentuc. will be of public benefit, and that the said sums ky river ; and in like manner, not more than of money are necessary for those purposes; and one-third of the sum aforesaid, on roads, be the sum of two thousand five hundred dollars tween the Kentucky and Green rivers; and in be appropriated out of the sales of the scrip of like manner, not more than one-third of the the state, shall be applied, under the direction aforesaid sums on roads on the south side of of said board, to the improvement of the navi. Green river: Provided, That if the said board gation of Panther creek: Provided further, That of internal improvement should not be called it shall be the duty of the board of internal imon, according to the provisions of this act, to provement to have surveyed by a competent ensubscribe the full amount of money authorized gineer or engineers, all of the streams which to be borrowed under this act, for making turn- this act proposes improving, west of the Tenpike roads, within one year; then, and in that nessee river, within the months of May and June event, the aforesaid board of internal improve- next, and it shall be the duty of said engineer ment may subscribe the sum which may remain or engineers to make a report to the board of inunsubscribed, in turnpike roads in any part of ternal improvement, by the first day of Septem. this commonwealth where individuals or corpo. ber next, or as soon as practicable thereafter; and rate bodies may have subscribed and paid in if it shall appear from said report, that all or a the like amount which the said board of inter- part of said streams can be beneficially improved, val improvement may be required to subscribe.” the engineer shall report the plan and probable
I determined, upon due reflection, to give the cost; upon which report said board of internal bill my vote; but if I could have supposed that improvement shall proceed to lay the same un. it was to lay the foundation for involving the der contract, and have said stream improved as Wedily as practicable, uutil the wbule vs the ty declared that if my competitor was elected, betore several ardounts shall be expended: And, property would go up, but if Toin Jaines was provided further, That it shall be the duty of the returned, it would have a disastrous fall. If the board of internal improvement to cause the system was carried on, men were told that the snags, drifts, and other obstructions in Panther country would be chequered over with rail-roads creek to be removed before the same are sub- and turnpikes, and that they would only have merged by the erection of the dams in Green to roll their produce out of their barns, and in river; and the amount appropriated to said a moment it would be on its way to market. stream by the act of the last session, shall not From that day I washed my hands of the inbe absolute, but may be withheld by the board ternal improvement system, and I voted against of internal improvement, if they deem its ex every appropriation that came up. A good mapenditure inexpedient, and not of sufficient pub- ny have given in their experience as to the operlic importanee,'
ations in regard to the education fund, and the The system had now fully developed itself to manner in which it was set apart and disposed me, and I became satisfied that it was not to be of. My recollection is, that after the distribucarried out in good faith. I therefore voted tion of the United States surplus revenue and against the bill, notwithstanding the represen- the reception by Kentucky of her share, there tatives frono my section took strong ground in were two parties in the legislature—the internal favor of it, and denounced me for my course on improvement, and the education parties. I bemy return home. I was satisfied that the design longed then, and do still, to the education parwas to give to the centre and wealthy portions of ty, and I am opposed to improving the face of the state the benefits of the appropriation, and the country, at the expense of the minds and that the promises held out to my section of the education of the children of the state. Finalcouniry were merely to secure their votes. If it ly the sum of $850,000 was set apart out of the was intended to give my county this $11,500, in United States deposite fund and pledged to the good faith. why, was not tho appropriation at object of education, and the balance was approonce macie positive and specific, as in the case of priated to internal improvements. The system the grant of $200,000 to the Lexington and Ohio of internal improvements went on swallowing railroad.
up million after million-not in Kentucky Well, as I have stated, I entered the senate in alone, but in all of the states of the Union, un1832, and I was a candidate for re-election in til the several states were indebted to the extent 1836. On one occasion while addressing the of some $200,000,000, the interest on which is people at Clark's river, I heard that the engineer $12,000,000, all of which went, not to our own was traveling up Clark's river for the purpose of citizens, but to the foreign capitalists. Those surveying it, and intended to go on towards capitalists had their agents in Wall street, New bayou du Chien. I went to him and he told me York, buying our stocks, the interest on which that he had examined that stream and thought was to be paid in gold and silver, to be transporwell of it. He said nothing more to me, but he ted across the water for the support of the naplaced in the hands of my competitor, an offi- bobs and aristocracy there. Well, in 1838, the cial report showing that $3000 was to be expend. credit of Kentucky was good at home and ed on that stream. It was not used publicly, abroad, but in 1839 our bonds could not be sold, but generally in a private and secret
we never having authorized their sale at less And I took ihe occasion then to tell the people than their par value. Then it was that provisthat they would never get a dollar, and though I ion was made that the contractors should take am no prophet or the son of a prophet, yet the them at their par value. They received them, prediction has been fully verified. 'I do believe but were unable to hold them, owing to the dethat engineer was sent there on that occasion for mands upon thenı for compensation to their lathe purpose of engineering Tom James out of borers and for their materials. What was the the senate.
resnlt? Why they had to go to the brokers and Mr. HARDIN. Name the engineer.
sell our bonds at from fifteen to twenty-five per Mr. JAMES. His name is Buford, and I be. cent. discount. It was not right, but the contraclieved it then aud I believe it at this day. I had tors were forced to take those bonds or nothing, discovered the workings of the system, and was and though they have been knocking at opposing its being carried out. "Though I live the door of your legislature for relief, the relief between two of the streams that were to be im- has never been extended to them. The banks proved, yet I was not to be bought up, and I were appealed to fur relief, and they loaned to had the nerve to vote against it. And thank the boaril of internal improvement several hulGod my constituency sustained me for it, al- dred thousand dollars, and thereby greatly inthough they never knew that they would not creased their circulation. These contractors and get the appropriation until after the election laborers were mostly foreigners, and not wanting was over. I can only account for being thus Kentucky money, they sold it to brokers, who sustained in the face of the opposition against made a rush on the banks, and thus forced those me, from the fact that my coustituency had an institutions to suspend. Kentucky was engag. abiding confidence in the honesty and purity of ed in an unfortunate and wasteful system of inmy motives, and believed, deeply identified as ternal improvements, and the school moneys my interests were with theirs, that I was govern. were invested in the bonds for the construction ed solely in my action by a sincere regard for of those works, most of them bearing five per the public good.
cent interest. I do not charge improper motives on any body, Mr. C. A. WICKLIFFE. The education fund for the whole country was inflamed with the in- was invested before 1839 and 1840, in the second ternal improvement fever, and men in my coun. lor third loan made.