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FEBRUARY, 1797.]
Accommodation of the President.

[H. OF R. experienced equal dilapidation and decay, and I wish, as he believed he was a gentleman of that a sum at least as large as was then allowed great economy, and would spurn at any thing (particularly when it was considered that the like tinsel or expense. Five thousand dollars price of goods was very much advanced since had been thought a sufficient som for this purthat time) should now be allowed for putting pose, but he was willing to give $8,000. He the present household upon the same footing hoped the bill would therefore be recommitted, of respectability and convenience with that at and this sum be inserted. New York in 1789. Mr. S. did not know that Mr. Macon seconded the motion for recomhe could give any further information on the mitting the bill. He was against it altogether. subject. It was a matter of notoriety that a He did not see why they should furnish the great part of the goods then purchased were house of the PRESIDENT any more than that of worn out and destroyed; such as the household any other of their officers. He thought the linen, crockery ware, &c., and that the PREBI- thing improper at first, and that it was wrong to DEXT had renewed them at his own expense; continue the practice. If the salary was not insomuch that if he were to take out of the large enough, it should be made larger, though House the furniture which he had supplied, he thought it sufficiently large. there would little remain in it besides tables, Mr. RUTHERFORD concurred with his colchairs, bedsteads, and a few such articles; since league, Mr. Heath. It was necessary, he said, all the carpets and ornamental furniture of the that Republicans should be consistent. If we House had been purchased by himself.

|thus give away the people's money, said he, Whilst he was up, he would wish to obviate shall we not be charged with rapaciously putthe only objection which had been adduced to ting our hands into their pockets? Have we this bill. The gentleman from New Jersey (Mr. not, he added, refused to redress grievances HENDERSOX) had supposed that this allowance and injuries, and to do justice to many deservwas meant to carry into effect what had been ing and distressed citizens, because our Treasury rejected in another way, alluding to the propos- | is low? And shall we now, when there is no ed advance of salary. That gentleman might right reason for it, lay hold of the public Treasee a very obvious distinction between the two sury, and lavish away $14,000? For what? things. If $5,000 had been added to the salary For adding new furniture to the house of the of the PRESIDENT, he could have disposed of it PRESIDENT. No; he was willing to render him as he pleased; but the money now proposed to all possible respect; he remembered well his be granted, was to be employed in the purchase letter to our sister Republic of Holland. He of furniture, &c., which would remain the pro- had a pretty good memory. He remembered perty of the United States, and would devolve well his patriotism; but he saw no reason to upon the next PRESIDENT. Mr. S. said, he would give him $14,000. He would give him $8,000, add, that in the joint committee there was not which he thought would be a very pretty coma dissenting voice to the proposition, and he pliment; but to give $14,000 would outrage hoped there would not be one in the House. every idea of that economy and Republican

The question was put for engrossing the bill simplicity which ought to characterize the for a third reading, and carried, there being fifty American nation. Why, said he, shall we, who votes in favor of it. This day and Monday were are a Confederacy of the Democratic Republicmentioned for the third reading; the question ans, everlastingly keep our eyes upon the pawas carried for the most distant day, 40 to 35. geantry of Eastern Courts ? Let us rather

attend to our own character than that of any MONDAY, February 27.

despotic nation upon earth. He hoped the bill

would be recommitted Accommodation of the President.

The question for recommitting was carriedThe bill to accommodate the PRESIDENT was 45 to 40. read the third time; when Mr. Heath moved The House accordingly resolved itself into a to have the bill recommitted, for the purpose of Committee of the Whole on the bill, when striking out $14,000 to insert $8,000. He Mr. Heath moved to strike out $14,000 and thogght $14,000 too large a sum to be given to insert $8,000. purchase new furniture; $8,000 he thought Mr. GILLESPIE called for the estimate, which would be a sufficiently handsome sum for the he understood was in possession of the compurpose. They were apt to be too lavish with | mittee. the public inoney on some occasions, and too Mr. SITGREAVES said there was no estimate sparing on others. He had not been satisfied before the House or committee. All that he with the reasons which had been given by the had seen was a list of the furniture which had Chairman of the committee for giving the sum been purchased for the PRESIDENT in 1789. He Dow in the bill. At a time when our Treasury himself had not had patience to go through it; but was so much in want of money, he did not if the gentleman wished it, it might be read to wish so large a sum to be given for this pur- the House. pose; nor did he think it necessary, except it Mr. HARTLEY hoped there would have been were to put our PRESIDENT in the style of a no objection to this appropriation. He thought potentate or prince. And this he was sure the the Chairman of the committee had fully shown PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES would not I the propriety of granting the $14,000 to the

H. OF R.)
Accommodation of the President.

[FEBRUARY, 1797. PRESIDENT, who was not merely an officer of plated ware and the mahogany furniture which the Government, but a branch of it. It was not could at all come under this description. Ingiving the money away, but merely advancing deed, any gentleman who was in the habit of it on account of the United States. He was not paying his respects to the PRESIDENT OF THE in favor of high salaries, but he wished the situ- UNITED STATES must have seen with regret that ation of the PRESIDENT to be made comfortable the appearance of his furniture was so far inand respectable.

ferior to that which was to be found in the Mr. HEATI said, he believed a great part of houses of any of our wealthy citizens, or even the furniture which was purchased in 1789, was of those in moderate circumstances. When this at present as good as when laid in ; this was was a notorious fact, what ground, he asked, particularly the case with respect to the mahog- could gentlemen have for comparing the houseany furniture; and he thought the $8,000 hold of the PRESIDENT to the pomp and splendor would be a sufficient sum to replace all articles of Eastern Courts? On the contrary, he thought of a perishable nature, such as carpets, lin- there was a humility of appearance in the house ens, &c.

of the PRESIDENT, which he would not say was Mr, HOLLAND was in favor of striking out, be- a disgrace to the country, but which at least cause it was only necessary to appropriate as proved its rigid economy. much as might be necessary whilst Government Mr. NICHOLAS said he voted for going into remained here, as, when it should be removed, Committee of the Whoe on this subject from the furniture now used might not be suitable an idea that the sum proposed to be given to for the house at Washington. At that time, he the PRESIDENT was larger than was necessary, supposed a further sum would be called for, and though he confessed he could not say what that therefore he thought a less sum than $14,000 sum ought exactly to be; he was for giving would be sufficient for the present purpose. enough and rather too much than too little. In

Mr. WILLIAMS was in favor of the bill as it deed, when he considered that the whole sum stood. He had been told that it was the inten- was not to be expended, except it should be tion of the State of Pennsylvania to make an found necessary, and that a certain style was eroffer to the PRESIDENT of the house which had pected to be observed in this station, he was not lately been erected in this city; if so, perhaps for stinting the sum to what he thought just the furniture which might be purchased for it enongh for purchasing furniture. If the whole would be suitable for the house in the Federal of the money granted must of necessity be exCity. He had before said that he thought it pended in furniture, he should have had more would have been better to have angmented the hesitation on the subject; but as the expendisalary of the PRESIDENT, and let him purchase ture would be left to the discretion of the Prehis own furniture. But as that had not been SIDENT, he could not suppose, from the wellagreed to be wished the committee now to rise known habits of economy of that gentleman, it and report progress, that information might be would be improperly disposed of. He theregained on the subject; because he thonght if he fore felt no difficulty in agreeing to the sum in was to have that house, that sum would not be the bill; for though he thought the sum too too large.

large, yet he would not so confine the appropriaMr. SITGREAVES said, he did not know whether tion as to oblige their officer to go about the the Legislature of this State would conclude to streets to look out for cheap purchases of furnimake the PRESIDENT the offer which the gentle-ture. man last up had mentioned; but of this he was Mr. Buck said, previous to these measures besure, that if they did, he could not afford to ing brought forward, they had decided against accept of it. For, if this bill passed, he was any advance to the salary of the PRESIDENT. certain that, under such circumstances, he could | All that time a committee was appointed to innot remove into that house, because he would quire into the state of the PRESIDENT's housenot be able to furnish it.

hold, and to report whether any, and what, Mr. S. said, he was surprised the House should further accommodation was necessary to be so suddenly change their opinion. He thought afforded. He conceived that it was the wish of he bad given sufficient information on the sub- that House that the gentleman who was comject to have shown the necessity of the grant. ing into office should have accommodations (Mr. S. here repeated what he had before noticed equal to those which had been given to the gentle respecting what had been allowed on a former man who was leaving it. The committee had occasion. When gentlemen entered minutely examined into facts, made a report, and a into the snbject, they seemed to have inform- bill had been brought in accordingly. The comation which was not very correct. He believed mittee had informed them upon what principles the sum mentioned in the bill not more than they bad acted; and it did not appear that they sufficient. The decay which had taken place either intended to increase the splendor of the in the PRESIDENT's household would require that household of the PRESIDENT, nor to add to his sum to make it good. The gentleman from salary. If any member could come forward and Virginia supposed there were many articles, not show that the report of the committee was erperishable in their nature, which could not have roneous, they should have some ground upon been injured by their use. He was mistaken. which to reject it. He had heard no man say There was nothing but about $800 worth of this, and therefore all that had been offered or

FEBRUARY, 1797.]
Accommodation of the President.

(H. OF R the subject ought not to weigh against that re- | not wanted, it would not be expended; but, he port. When the bill was before them on Satur- believed, whatever sum was appropriated would day, there was a considerable majority in favor be expended; for he was not one of those of it, and as they had no new information on who thought that revenne could not be found. the matter, he saw no reason for a change of He believed if the money was granted, it would opinion.

be both found and spent. Some members, Mr. B. said, had held out an Mr. SITGREAVES wished to correct the gentle. idea that they were about to give this money man last up with respect to one fact. He had away, to enable the new PRESIDENT to live in said the PRESIDENT of the old Congress had no the style of foreign Courts. If the inhabitants salary. It was true that he did not receive of this city had adopted this style, then it would any thing under that name, but there was a probe chargeable against the PRESIDENT, but not vision, not merely for the furniture of his honse, otherwise, since it was acknowledged he had but for the constant provision of it; and this not kept pace with them in this respect. The was so considerable that from 1778 to 1779, in appropriating this money would only be con- one year, eighty-three thousand dollars were Terting it into so much public property; for, I paid for that purpose. when his term of office should expire, he could Mr. Macon wished to know what sort of not carry away a single article. It was not, money this was ; he supposed it was ju depretherefore, giving away a farthing, but merely ciated paper. providing for our own convenience to enable Mr. SITGREAVEs was not certain what kind of the PRESIDENT to fill the office with comfort money was meant. and reputation; and as they had nothing before Mr. JEREMIAH SMITH said, in settling an affair them to show the sum too large, he saw no of this kind, it was proper to have respect to propriety in rejecting it, for the purpose of in- the office, and not to the man who was to fill serting any other.

it. He could himself consider the establishment Mr. RUTHERFORD said, if the House had com- of the PRESIDENT's household in no other light mitted an error one day, it would be well for than in the nature of a compensation for his them to correct it another. If they were to services, in the same way that he considered give $14,000 away on the present occasion, he the privilege of franking, stationery, and newsthought they would commit a very serious papers, allowed the members of both Houses, to error. The gentleman froin Pennsylvania (Mr. be such; because, if they were not allowed to SITGREAVES) had said many of the citizens of them, they would have to purchase those articles Philadelphia lived in a superior style to the themselves; and if furniture was not provided PRESIDENT. If so, he would say they were very by Government for the house of the PRESIDENT, bad citizens, since it was proper that the citizens he must himself furnish it out of his salary, or of this rising Republic should cultivate a sim- from his private purse. To refuse to provide plicity of living and of manners.

| the necessary furniture would therefore be to Mr. Macon thought some of the arguments reduce his salary; for it was true that this plan introduced on this occasion were very improper; of presenting furniture to the PRESIDENT was such as the habits of economy or private fortune adopted before the salary was fixed, so that it of the gentleman who was to succeed to the Pre- must have been considered as being additional sidential chair. They were about to settle a to the salary. And was that salary, he asked, permanent principle, which it was proper to do near so valuable now as it was when fixed ? at this time, before a new Presidency com- Certainly not. He trusted, therefore, they menced. He knew nothing of the private pro- should not reduce it. perty of the person who was to fill the office, | This sum, Mr. S. said, was mentioned, from a nor had it any thing to do with the matter. The consideration that four years hence the seat of question was, whether they were to go over the Government would be removed, and that then same ground every four or eight years of fur- the furniture would be in a great degree useless. nishing the house of a new PRESIDENT? He They, therefore, only recommended such a sum did not wish that it should be so; he wished as they thought would be sufficient to put the the salary to be the only consideration which furniture in a proper state for that term. He bethe PRESIDENT should receive for his services. lieved that fourteen thousand dollars would not If it had not been settling a permanent princi- do more than that. ple, he should not perhaps have opposed it. Mr. Macon said he was always opposed to the

It had been said that the old PRESIDENT of privileges allowed to members of franking, &c. Congress had a household furnished him, but he Gentlemen talked about a statement; he did received no salary from the United States ex- not know what that might contain, he had not cept his household. He considered this sum as seen it; but he did not know how it could rean advance upon the salary paid to the PRESI- quire fourteen thousand dollars to repair furniDEXT by the different States, and before any ture which at first cost only thirteen thousalary was fixed by the United States; but now, sand. as an ample salary was paid to the PRESIDENT, Mr. JEREMIAH SMITH said, the gentleman last he did not think such a provision should be con-up was inaccurate in his statement. The thirtinued. It was sometimes said that it was no teen thousand dollars which were allowed for matter what sum was appropriated, as, if it was I furniture for the late PRESIDENT, was in addi

H. OF R.]
Accommodation of the President.

(FEBRUARY, 1797. tion to the furniture which had already been in / ing been negatived, the expenditure must be possession of the PRESIDENT of Congress. left to the discretion of the PRESIDENT. He did

Mr. SHERBURNE said, the question was with not mean to go into any detail. He did not wish respect to the quantum of money to be granted, to place the gentleman coming into office in & as every one seemed to allow that a certain sum worse situation than that of him who was going was necessary. By having recourse to what out; and as he felt no objection to leave it to was done for other officers of the Government, the PRESIDENT to make use of the whole or a they might, perhaps, form an estimate of what part of this money, as his discretion should diwould be reasonable on the present occasion. rect, he should vote for the bill. A practice had been established of allowing our Mr. CLAIBORNE said, as provision had been Ministers to foreign countries a sum as an outfit made for furniture for the gentleman now in equal to one year's salary; so that nine thousand office, he was inclined to vote for the fourteen dollars were allowed a Minister for this purpose, thousand dollars proposed now to be granted though it might happen that he would not be for the same purpose to the gentleman who was employed more than a few months in the ser- to succeed him. vice. He thought, therefore, that fourteen thou- Mr. AENDERSON wished to give his reasons sand dollars could not be thought too large a for voting against this bill. He wished to place sum for the PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES, the PRESIDENT coming into office in as comfortwhose term of service was for four years, and able circumstances as he who was going out; which would go to his successor in office; but it appeared to him that the sum proposed whereas, the nine thousand dollars allowed to a was larger than necessary for this purpose. Inforeign Minister were entirely at his disposal, deed, said Mr. H., when he read an article though he might not be in the service more of the constitution touching this subject, he had than a month.

his doubts with respect to the constitutionality Mr. AMEs said, it appeared to him that it of the proceeding. 'That article said, “ that the would be desirable to proceed according to pre- PRESIDENT should receive a compensation which cedent, as nearly as they could. It was not de

should neither be increased nor diminished dursirable to innovate or change the established ing the period for which he should have been order of things, except strong reasons existed elected; and that he should not receive within for the change. On inquiring what had been that period any other emoluments from the the practice heretofore, they found the PRESI- United States, or any of them." DENT of the old Congress, as well as the PRESI

Mr. SITGREAVES believed there could be no DENT now going out of office, had establish- doubt as to the constitutionality of the proposed ments made for their household similar to that grant of money, as the clause ran, “ during the now proposed. If they looked forward to that

period for which he should have been elected," period when the seat of Government was to be which would not prevent them from passing

hoved, and considered the furniture which any number of acts before he went into office. would be necessary for the house in the Federal The question on the passing of the bill was city, it would be seen that there would be a then taken by yeas and nays, and stood 63 to necessity for a new establishment at that time, I 27. as follows: as it was evident that the present furniture or what might be purchased with the sum now

Yeas.-Fisher Ames, Theodorus Bailey, Abraham contemplated, would be wholly inadequate to

Baldwin, Theophilus Bradbury, Daniel Buck, Dempthe furnishing of that house. He supposed an

sey Burges, Thomas Claiborne, Joshua Coit, Wil

liam Cooper, William Craik, Samuel W. Dana, James additional grant of twelve or fifteen thousand

Davenport, George Dent, George Ege, Abiel Foster, pounds would be necessary for that purpose.

| Dwight Foster, Nathaniel Freeman, junior, Albert We have chosen an elective Government, | Gallatin, Ezekiel Gilbert, Nicholas Gilman, Henry said Mr. A., and if it were meant to be kept | Glenn, Chauncey Goodrich, Roger Griswold, William pure, they must encourage the people to make B. Grove, Robert Goodloe Harper, Carter B. Harrichoice of such men, without respect to fortune, son, Thomas Hartley, William Hindman, John Wilkes as they think will serve them best, but if in- Kittera, George Leonard, Edward Livingston, Samstead of providing a suitable household for the uel Lyman, William Lyman, James Madison, Francis PRESIDENT, they left him to provide for himself Malbone, Andrew Moore, Frederick A. Muhlenberg, in this respect, men of large fortune only could William Vans Murray, John Nicholas, John Page, engage in this part of the public service. And would this, he asked, be doing honor to the Re

Read, John Richards, Samuel Sewall, John S. Sherpublican Government? He thought not.

burne, Samuel Sitgreaves, Thompson J. Skinner, Jer

emiah Smith, Nathaniel Smith, Isaac Smith, Israel The question for striking out was put and

Smith, William Smith, Richard Sprigg, junior, negatived—55 to 36. The committee then rose,

Thomas Sprigg, John Swanwick, Zephaniah Swift, and when the question was about to be put in

George Thatcher, John E. Van Allen, Philip Van the House

Cortlandt, Peleg Wadsworth, and John Williams, Mr. GALLATIN said, the provision of the bill Nays.—Thomas Blount, Nathan Bryan, Samuel J. left it to the discretion of the PRESIDENT whe-Cabell, Gabriel Christie, John Clopton, Isaac Coles, ther he would expend the whole of the money, Jesse Franklin, James Gillespie, Christohpher Greenor not. His opinion was, that the sum was too up, Andrew Gregg, Wade Hampton, John Hathorn, large ; but the question for striking it out hav- | Jonathan N. Havens, John Heath, Thomas Hender


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FEBRUARY, 1797.]
Military and Naval Appropriations.

[H. OF R. son, James Holland, Andrew Jackson, George Jack- 1 tions before the cominittee: one to fill the blank son, Aaron Kitchell, Matthew Lockn, Nathaniel Ma- with four hundred and forty-six thousand dollars, con, John Milledge, Anthony New, Alexander D. Orr, the other with three hundred thousand. He Robert Rutherford, William Strudwick, and Richard

would observe that one of the items in this estiWinn,

mate, viz., that for the fortifications of West

Point, ought not to be included under this head; Military and Naval Appropriations.

but, as to the other items, he would mention, in The House went into a Committee of the answer to what had fallen from the gentleman Whole on this subject, when, after some discus from Virginia (Mr. VENABLE) what was the reasion respecting the price of rations, Mr. GALLA- son which had induced the committee to put TIN insisting upon seventeen cents being a suffi- them in one sum, which was to obtain the very ciently high calculation, and Mr. W. Smith abid- object he had in view in wishing to have all the ing by the estimate of the War Department at items stated separately. twenty cents; the latter was agreed upon thirty. It wouid be recollected that they had bad a six to thirty-four, and the pay and subsistence of letter from the Secretary of the Treasury, in the Army was settled, but which has since under which he said, “that the appropriations for the gone an alteration, owing to the two companies Military and Naval Establishments were consiof cavalry being added by a new bill. The sum dered as general grants of money; and, though for forage and clothing was also agreed upon, but they were to be accounted for according to law, which afterwards, of course, from the above al- yet it was the practice of the officers of the teration, underwent an augmentation. The hos- Treasury not to consider each appropriation as pital department being under consideration, specific, but the whole as a general grant of mo

Mr. W. SMITH moved to fill the blank with ney. This practice was making the law a mere thirty thousand dollars.

farce, since the officers of the Treasury did not Mr. GALLATIN moved to fill it with ten thou- consider themselves as at all bound by the spesind. He said, they had this year had a statement cific sums. He therefore concluded it to be proof the expense of the Military Establishment, by per to pass the law in such a manner as to conwhich they found that the hospital department fine the expense to the appropriation for the difhad cost six thousand nine hundred and five dol- ferent itens. It was said to be impossible to lars. It had been the uniform practice of the carry the law into execution on this principle. House to appropriate from thirty to forty thou- It was said there were a number of contingent sand dollars under this head, though the expense expenses which could not be exactly ascertained, had never exceeded seven thousand; and to ap- and that therefore it was necessary the officers ply the surplus to other purposes. He thought it of the Treasury should have a certain discretion wrong to appropriate four times the sum neces- given them to make use of the surplus of any sary, and had therefore proposed to fill the blank item for which more than was necessary had with ten thousand dollars, which was fifty per been appropriated. He believed the uncertainty cent, more than had ever been expended for the here mentioned existed, and therefore it had purpose.

| been concluded to be best to put the contingent Mr. PARKER believed than ten thousand dollars articles together in one sum, in order to give would be enough to pay for physic for the Army. bounds to the discretion of the Department. Indeed he believed it was generally expended in Having given the reasons which caused the wine and luxuries by the officers, and that little bill to be brought in in this shape, Mr. G. said he of it went to the use of the subordinates. would mention the items upon which the sum

The question for ten thousand dollars was put he had proposed to fill up the blank was comand carried.

posed. For defensive protection, sixty thousand The blank for the Ordnance Department was dollars; for the Quartermaster's Department, one filled with forty thousand dollars; and that for hundred and fifty thousand dollars. This latter the fortifications of the ports and harbors of the sum has been estimated at two hundred and fifty United States with twenty-four thousand dollars. thousand dollars, but upon what ground he was

Mr. GALLATIN moved to fill the blank for the at a loss to know. The Army would now be Quartermaster's Department, the Indian Depart- fixed in garrison, and would not have to march ment, the defensive protection of the frontiers, from post to post. None of the reasons given bounties, and all the contingent expenses of the last year for this expense would now apply; and War Department, with three hundred thousand he thought it unreasonable that the same sum dollars.

should be allowed for this item which was alMr. VENABLE said, if the sum necessary for lowed at the time when they were engaged in each of the above items could be specified, he an Indian war. would rather have it so expressed than have the In 1789, when we had eight hundred whole in one sum.

men in garrison, the expenses of this Mr. W. SMITI said it would come to the same department was ..

- $11,076 thing, if the several items were voted in an ag- In 1790, he did not recollect the numgregate sam, as they were all contingent ex- ber of troops, but not more, he bepenses. He should move to have the blank filled

- 45,763 with four hundred and forty-six thousand dollars. In 1791

- 92.223 Mr. GALLATIN observed there were two mo- . In 1792 (in the height of the Indian war) 206,510

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