Register of Debates in Congress, Comprising the Leading Debates and Incidents of the Second Session of the Eighteenth Congress Page: 161
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OF DEBATES IN CONGRESS.
JAN. 10, 1825.]
Suppression of Piracy.—Imprisonment for Debt.
the value of such vessel, with condition that such vessel
shall not make or commit any depredation, outrage, un-
lawful assault, or unprovoked violence upon the high
seas, against the vessel of any nation in amity with the
United States; and that the puns, arms, and ammuni-
tion of sucli vessel shall be returned within the United
States, or otherwise accounted for, and shall not be sold
or disposed of in any foreign port or place ; and that
such owner or owners, and the commander and crew of
such merchant vessel shall, in all things, observe and
perform such further instructions in the premises as the
President of the United shall establish and order for the
better Government of the armed merchant vessels of the
Sec. 7■ And be it further enacted, That the President
of the United States shall be, and he is hereby, autho-
rized to establish and order suitable instructions to and
for the armed merchant vessels of the United States, for
the better governing and restraining of them, and to pre-
vent any outrage, cruelty, or injury, which they might
be liable to commit; a copy of which instructions shall be
delivered by the Collectors of the Customs to the com-
mander of sucli vessel, when he shall give bond as afore-
said. And it shall be the duty of the owner or owners, and
commander and crew, for the time being, of such armed
merchant vessel of the U nited States, at each return to
any port thereof, to make report, upon oath, to the Col-
lector of said port, of any rencounter which shall have
happened with any piratical vessel, and of the state of
the company and crew of any vessel which they shall
have subdued, captured, or retaken. And the persons
of such crew or company, chargeable with any act or
acts of piracy, or piratical depreciation, shall be deliver-
ed to the Marshal of the same district, for trial, before the
courtofthe United States having competent jurisdiction.
Sec. 8. And be it further enacted, That five per centum
on the nett amount (after deducting all charges and ex-
penditures,) of the prize-money arising from captured
vessels or boats, and of their tackle, appurtenances, am-
munition and lading ; and of the nett amount of the sal-
vage on any vessels and cargoes recaptured by the arm-
ed merchant vessels of the United States, shall be secur-
ed and paid over to the Collector of the Customs at the
port or place in the United States at which such captur-
ed or recaptured vessels may arrive, to be by said Col-
lectors paid over to the Treasury, as other public money;
and the same shall be held, and is hereby pledged, a3 a
fund for the support of the widows and orphans of such
persons as may be slain, and for the support and mainte-
nance of such persons as may be wounded and disabled
on board the armed merchant vessels aforesaid, in any
rencounter or engagement with any piratical vessel or
crew, to be assigned and distributed as hereinafter pro-
Sec. 9. And be it further enacted, That the Secretary
of the Navy be authorized and required to place on the
pension list, under like regulations and restrictions as
are used in relation to the Navy of the United States,
any master, other officer, or seaman, or other person,
employed on board the armed merchant vessels of the
United States, who shall have been wounded or other-
wise disabled in any engagement with pirates, allowing
to the master or commander a sum not exceeding
dollars per month; to mates not exceeding dollars
each, per month; and to seamen and other persons
employed as aforesaid the sum of dollars per
month for the highest rate of disability, and so in propor-
tion ; which several pensions shall be paid, by direction
of the Secretary of the Navy, out of the fund above pro-
vided, and no other.
Sec. 10. And be it further enacted, That if any master,
mate, or other officer, seaman, or other person, employ-
ed or serving on board any armed merchant vessel as
aforesaid, shall die by reason of a wound received in the
ine of his duty, in any rencounter, pursuit, or engage-
ment, as aforesaid, leaving a widow, or if no widow, a
child or children under sixteen years of age, such wi-
dow, or if no widow, such child or children, shall be
placed on the pension list by the Secretary of the Navy,
who shall allow, out of the fund aforesaid, and no other,
to such widow, child, or children, half the monthly pen-
sion to which the rank or station of the deceased would
have entitled him for the highest rate of disability under
this act; which allowance shall continue for the term of
five years. But, in case of the death or intermarriage of
such widow before the expiration of five years, the half
pay for the remainder of the term shall go to the child
or children of the deceased : Provided, That the half-
pay shall cease on the death of such child or children,
or on their arriving to the age of sixteen years.
Sec. 11. And be it further enacted, That all from the
second to the seventh sections of this act, inclusive, shall
continue and be in force,for the term of o e year, and
until the end of the next session of Congress thereafter."
The bill was twice read, and, on motion of Mr. BAR-
BOUR, made the order of the day for Thursday next.
A message was received from the President of the
United States, (the same as that received in the other
House on Friday,) respecting his accounts with, and dis-
bursements for, the government.
Mi'. UAYNE moved that it be referred to a select com-
Mr. SMITH said, that this request of the President
was with a view to collect all the information necessary
to be acted on hereafter. He supposed that a committee
would be appointed in the other House, and, as it was
not to be acted on during the present session, he sug-
gested the propriety of laying it on the table, to be tak-
en up for disposition at a future day.
Mr. KElLY thought that, if a joint committee of the
two Houses were arranged, it would be more fitting the
subject; each House organizinga committee on tile sub-
ject would be merely obstructing each other.
Mr. H AYNE said, that it was a parliamentary rule that
one House could not know what the other was acting
on, and that each House should act for itself, except in
matters of great national importance, when they might
invite a joint committee. Yet, he had no objection to
the latter course. His object was in substance a joint
committee—it was to investigate facts, to ascertain what
was doing in the other House, and present the facts to
this House. This object would be attained by referring
the message to a select committee of this House, and
they would not be acting superfluously in collecting
and arranging the facts. If the gentleman from Alaba-
ma (Mr. Keily) wished for a joint committee, let it be
so; but he thought that the Senate ought to act for it-
self—it was a peculiar case which would require great
attention, and the facts elicited would be very importanl.
Mr. BARBOUR observed, that a subject of this kind
was one which would require mature consideration, be-
fore it could be acted on. It was obvious, that, at present,
some difference of opinion existed, which, at a future
period, would, probably, not be the case. He, therefore,
to give time for reflection, moved that the message lay
on the table, to be taken up hereafter.
This motion was agreed to.
The bill for abolishing imprisonment for debt was
read a third time.
Mr. NOBLE observed, that, when the bill was brought
forward a few days ago, he moved that it should be
printed to enable the Senate to examine the various
amendments made to it. He observed then, that one
very important feature of the bill was that which requir-
ed two oaths to be taken before the defendant could be
held to bail. When the question was taken on one oath
" that he or they have reason to believe that the said de-
fendant or defendants intend to remove from the state
or territory, or intend to leave the United States," tlni
vote was equally divided; some gentlemen might say,
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Gales, Joseph, 1761-1841. Register of Debates in Congress, Comprising the Leading Debates and Incidents of the Second Session of the Eighteenth Congress, book, 1825; Washington D.C.. (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc30752/m1/85/: accessed April 30, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; crediting UNT Libraries Government Documents Department.