History, 1838–1856, volume F-1 [1 May 1844–8 August 1844]

  • Source Note
  • Historical Introduction
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<​May 13​> been before the Senate and referred to the committee on the Judiciary, and the report of said committee is not yet rendered; which is the cause of his delay in writing to you.
“Yesterday we conversed with Messrs. , , , and , and last evening we spent several hours with the Hon., . They all appear deeply interested in the question, and received us with every demonstration of of respect that we could desire. thought the bill would not pass, from the fact that there already exists between and a treaty for the joint occupancy of , and that any act of our government authorizing an armed force to be raised, and destined for that country, would be regarded by as an infraction of that treaty, and a cause of her commencing hostilities against us. But my reply was, these volunteers are not to be considered any part or portion of the Army of the , neither acting under the direction or authority of the ; and, said I, for men to go there and settle in the character of emigrants cannot be regarded by our government as deviating in the least degree from her plighted faith, unless she intends to tamely submit to British monopoly in that country. said he would present the Memorial if we desired it; I thanked him for his kind offer, but observed that I was not yet prepared for the bill to be submitted, but wished to elicit all the facts relative to the condition of , and also advise with many other members relative to the matter; and we could better determine then how the bill [HC 6:369] should be introduced. We do not want it presented and referred to a standing committee, and stuck away with five or ten cords of petitions, and that be the last of it; but we want the memorial read, a move made to suspend the rules of the House, and the bill printed &c.
said, ‘I am for any how; you may set me down on your list, and I will go for you if you will go for Oregon.’ has been quite ill, but is just recovered; he will help all he can; likewise. But says that he does not believe any thing will be done about or the this session; for it might have a very important effect upon the Presidential election, and politicians are slow to move when such doubtful and important matters are likely to be affected by it. He says that there are already two bills before the House for establishing a territorial government in , and to protect the emigrants there; and now he says, were your bill to be introduced it might be looked upon that you claimed the sole right of emigrating to and settling that new country to the exclusion of others. He was in favor of the being settled, and he thought the bills already before the House would extend equal protection to us; and equal protection to every class of citizens was what the government could rightly do, but particular privileges to any one class they could not rightly do. I observed that the bill asked for no exclusive rights; it asks not for exclusive rights in , neither do we wish it. Other people might make a move to , and no prejudices bar their way; and their motives would not be mis-interpreted. But said I, knows her guilt, and should we attempt to march to without the government throwing a protective shield over us, ’s crimes would lead her first to misinterpret our intentions, to fan the flame of popular excitement against us, and scatter the firebrands of a misguided zeal among the combustible materials of other places, creating a flame too hot for us to encounter, too desolating for us to indulge the hope of successfully prosecuting the grand and benevolent enterprise which we have conceived. We have been compelled [p. 23]
May 13 been before the Senate and referred to the committee on the Judiciary, and the report of said committee is not yet rendered; which is the cause of his delay in writing to you.
“Yesterday we conversed with Messrs. , , , and , and last evening we spent several hours with the Hon., . They all appear deeply interested in the question, and received us with every demonstration of of respect that we could desire. thought the bill would not pass, from the fact that there already exists between and a treaty for the joint occupancy of , and that any act of our government authorizing an armed force to be raised, and destined for that country, would be regarded by as an infraction of that treaty, and a cause of her commencing hostilities against us. But my reply was, these volunteers are not to be considered any part or portion of the Army of the , neither acting under the direction or authority of the ; and, said I, for men to go there and settle in the character of emigrants cannot be regarded by our government as deviating in the least degree from her plighted faith, unless she intends to tamely submit to British monopoly in that country. said he would present the Memorial if we desired it; I thanked him for his kind offer, but observed that I was not yet prepared for the bill to be submitted, but wished to elicit all the facts relative to the condition of , and also advise with many other members relative to the matter; and we could better determine then how the bill [HC 6:369] should be introduced. We do not want it presented and referred to a standing committee, and stuck away with five or ten cords of petitions, and that be the last of it; but we want the memorial read, a move made to suspend the rules of the House, and the bill printed &c.
said, ‘I am for any how; you may set me down on your list, and I will go for you if you will go for Oregon.’ has been quite ill, but is just recovered; he will help all he can; likewise. But says that he does not believe any thing will be done about or the this session; for it might have a very important effect upon the Presidential election, and politicians are slow to move when such doubtful and important matters are likely to be affected by it. He says that there are already two bills before the House for establishing a territorial government in , and to protect the emigrants there; and now he says, were your bill to be introduced it might be looked upon that you claimed the sole right of emigrating to and settling that new country to the exclusion of others. He was in favor of the being settled, and he thought the bills already before the House would extend equal protection to us; and equal protection to every class of citizens was what the government could rightly do, but particular privileges to any one class they could not rightly do. I observed that the bill asked for no exclusive rights; it asks not for exclusive rights in , neither do we wish it. Other people might make a move to , and no prejudices bar their way; and their motives would not be mis-interpreted. But said I, knows her guilt, and should we attempt to march to without the government throwing a protective shield over us, ’s crimes would lead her first to misinterpret our intentions, to fan the flame of popular excitement against us, and scatter the firebrands of a misguided zeal among the combustible materials of other places, creating a flame too hot for us to encounter, too desolating for us to indulge the hope of successfully prosecuting the grand and benevolent enterprise which we have conceived. We have been compelled [p. 23]
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