The Congressional Globe: Containing the Debates and Proceedings of the Second Session of the Thirty-Seventh Congress Page: 210
The following text was automatically extracted from the image on this page using optical character recognition software:
THE CONGRESSIONAL GLOBE.
to say that Lord Stowell would have condemned
the Trent on the double ground of carrying con-
traband of war and of resistance to search.
Mr. Speaker, when this whole matter shall
have been calmly and thoroughly considered and
weighed, theiudgmentof the civilized world will be
with us. Wc have but the first impression, and
notthesobersecond thought. Thequestion which
has been considfrred is rather what the law should
be made to be than what it is. When the matter
is more carefully weighed it will be seen and felt
that no wrong was done to England; that there
was no wrong1 in the forbearance to exercisc an
extreme right—no insult, for none was intended;
that ourfeeling, if any, leaned to virtue's side, was
a relaxation of the iron rigor of law from motives
of humanityandChristian courtesy. That on the
other hand England has done to us a great wrong
in availing herself of our moment of weakness to
make a demand which, accompanied as it was by
•* the pomp and circumstance of war," was insolent
in spirit and thoroughly unjust. It was indeed
courteous in language; but n wasthe courtesy of
Joab to Amasa as he smote htm in the fifth rib:
" Art thou in health, my brother?" That message
of Lord Russell to Lord Lyons which could cross
the Atlantic, had not projectile force enough to
have passed from Dover to Calais.
2. Nothing is gained for the cause of neutral
rights. The lesson taught us by this case is that
not only may every mail steamer of a neutral be
seized and searched for contraband of war, but
that her voyage may and must be broken up, and
the vessel brought in for adjudication. Neutral
commcrce may well pray relief from her friends.
But will England feel herself bound by the pre-
cedent such as it is ? So long as it is convenient,
not a moment longer. Her standard of right has
been, is, and will be, the interests of England.
There is nothing in the law of nature or of nations
that will stand in the way of her imperious will.
But the loss will ultimately be hers. She is
treasuring up to herself wrath against the day of
wrath. She has excited in the heai t s of this peo-
ple a deep and bitter sense of wrong, of injury in-
flicted at a moment when we could not respond.
It is night with us now; but through the watches
of the night, even, we shall be gliding ourselves
to strike the blow of righteous retribution.
Mr. STEVENS. TL'his is a mere question of
reference. I move the previous question.*
Mr. VALLANDIGHAM. I appeal to the gen-
tleman from Pennsylvania to withdraw the de-
mand for the previous question for a few moments
only. The Chair permitted the gentleman from
Ohio [Mr. Hutciiins] to attack me, and I desire
to reply to him.
Mr. STEVENS. I do not wish to deprive any
gentleman of an opportunity to speak on this sub-
ject, but them will be another time for it.
Mr. VALLANDIGHAM. Now is the time.
Mr. STEVENS. Cut ically we are so far be-
hind with the business of the House that I must
insist on my motion.
Mr. VALLANDIGH AM. ltisnotworth re-
plying to after this moment.
Mr. W A S H B U11N E called for tellers on sec-
onding the previous question..
Tellers were ordered; and Messrs. Washburne
and Pattf.n were appointed.
The House dmded, and the tellers reported-
ayes 53, noes 45.
So the previous question was seconded, and the
main question ordeied; and«underits operation
the communication was referred to the Committee
on Foreign Affairs, and ordeied to be printed.
Mr. STEVEN'S moved to reconsider the vote
by which the communication was referred, and
also moved to lay the motion to teeonsider on the
The latter motion was agreed to.
THE LONDON EXHIBITION.
The SPEAKER laid before the House a mes-
sage from the President of the United States,
transmitting a communication from James R.
Partridge, secretary to the executive committee
to the industrial exhibition to be held in London
in the course of the present yta , relative to a
vessel for the purpose of taking such articles as
persons in this country may wish to contribute to
the exhibition, and recommending that authority
be given to charter a suitable merchant vessel.
Mr. MAYNARD. i move that the papers be
referred to the Committee of Ways and Means,
and ordered to be printed.
The motion was agreed to.
GEORGE W. JOHNSON.
The SPEAKER also laid before the House a
communication from the Interior Department,
transmitting, in accordance with the resolution
of the House of Representatives of February 11,
1861, a report of the surveyor general of Wash-
ington Territory, as to the amount of damages
suffered by George W. Johnson, in consequence
of the occupancy of his lands in that Territory by
the War Department, with the testimony taken
by him; which were referred to the Committee on
Military Affairs, and ordered to be printed.
MESSAGE FROM TIIE SENATE.
A message was received from the Senate of the
United States, by Mr. Forney, its Secretary, no-
tifying the House that the Senate had passed a
joint resolution (H.R.No.22) authorizing Henry
Sawyer to accept a medal.
Mr. STEVENS. I move that the rules be sus-
pended, and that the House resolve itself into the
Committee of the Whole on the state of the Union
for the purpose of taking up an appropriation bill.
Mr. SPAULDING. Will the gentleman from
Pennsylvania waive that motion for a moment to
allow me to report a bill?
Mr. STEVENS. Cei tainly.
Mr. VALLANDIGHAM. I insiston the reg-
ular order of business.
Mr. SPAULDING. I report a bill from the
Committee of Ways and Means.
Mr. VALLANDIGHAM. Is it an appropri-
Mr. SPAULDING. It is not strictly an ap-
propriation bill, although the bill does contain an
appropriation. It is a bill to authorize the issue
of Treasury notes, payable on demand.
The SPEAKER. The Chair thinks that that
bill would haidly come under the rule giving the
Committee of Ways and Means the right to
report at any time general appropriation bills.
If the gentleman from Ohio objects, it cannot be
received at this lime.
Mr. VALLANDIGHAM. I object.
PENNSYLVANIA CONTESTED ELECTION".
Mr. LOOMIS. I am instructed by the Com-
mittee of Elections to make a report m the con-
tested-election case of John M. Butler against
William E. Lehman. I move that it be printed.
It was so ordered.
Mr. WORCESTER. I suggest that the same
order be made in reference to the minority report
in the same case.
It was so ordered.
Mr. LOOMIS. I desire to give notice that, on
Tuesday of next week, I will call up this report
for the action of the House.
CIVIL APPROPRIATION BILL.
Mr. STEVENS. I now insist on my motion.
The motion was agreed to.
The rules were accordingly suspended; and the
House resolved itself into the Committee of the
Whole on the state of the Union, (Mr. Camp-
bell in the chair,) and proceeded to the con-
sideration of the bill (H. R. No. 154) making
appropriations for sundry civil expenses of the
Government for the year ending the 30th of June,
18G3, and additional appropriations for the year
ending the 30th of June,*1862.
The CHAIRMAN. If there be no objection,
the first reading of the bill will be dispensed with.
Mr. VALLANDIGHAM. Let the bill be read
through. We have had haste enough in these
The bill was road through; and the Clerk then
proceeded to read the bill through by clauses for
Mr. VALLANDIGHAM. Is this bill a spe-
cial order ?
The CHAIRMAN. It is not.
Mr. VALLANDIGHAM. Is general debate
' The CHAIRMAN. It is in order.
| Mr. VALLANDIGHAM. Then I propose to
j renew the discussion of the surrender of Mason
i and Slidcll.
; I thank the gentleman from Massachusetts [Mr.
' Thomas] for the manner of his speech. It was
manly, elevated, dignified, lawyer-like, judge-like,
and in striking contrast with the remarks of the
member across the way, [Mr. Hutchins.] But if
the doctrines maintained by him be true, then his
speech was a far severer censure of the Adminis-
tration than was mine.
But I rose, sir, to allude for a moment to what
was said, some time ago, by my colleague from
the Ashtabula district, [Mr. Hutchins.] His
remarks were not, at first, even, deserving of any
very special reply; and after the lapse of half an
hour, I shall forbear some things which I might
have said had the floor been assigned to me at the
In answer to his proposition that a war with
England must result in a recognition of the con-
federate States,and disruption permanentlyof this
Union, I have only to say to him, as I said the
other day to a gentleman from Indiana, that it
became him, and all others concerned, to have
thought of that on the first day of the session,
when no less than three several resolutions, di-
rectly or indirectly indorsing the act of Captain
Wilkes, passed this House without opposition.
I did not at the time approve of the resolution of
thanks submitted by the gentleman from Illinois,
[Mr. Lovejov,] and I looked around me in anx-
ious suspense to observe whether there was cour-
age or statesmanship enough on the other side of
the House to interpose an objection to it; but there
was none. I offered none. Had I objected, the cry
would have again gone forth, " Behold theenemy
of his country, always against her!" I had no
responsibility that required me to interfere, and I
did not. Then was the time,so far as this House
is concerned, to have paused; and so far as regards
this Administration, it was their duty to have
acted when Captain Wilkes first anchored the
San Jacinto at Fortress Monroe. The law of the
case on the 12th of November last was precisely
what the law was on the 27th of December fol-
lowing. The facts were just as well known and
understood four and twenty hours after the arrival
of these men upon our coast as they were under-
stood and known when the dispatch of the Secre-
tary was written and the surrender made. Honor
would have been saved, and a savor of j^race im-
parted by a voluntary discharge at the first.
That is my reply; and if I am charged with
the desire of giving aid and comfort to the south-
ern confederacy, by maintaining the honor and
dignity of my own country against a foreign foe,
I hurl back the charge defiantly into the teeth
of all who were concerned, directly or indirectly,
openly or tacitly, in the resolutions of the first day
of this session. It is too late now, sir, to meet
me with this mean and beggarly insinuation. I
have had enough of it outside of this House, and
will submit to none of it here.
Mr. Chairman, I will not imitate the bad man-
ners nor the breach of parliamentary decorum of
which the member over the way was guilty, by
an inquiry into his abolition-disunion record for
the past fifteen years, as very well I might. As
to my motives, he is not the judge, nor is any
other member of this House. 1 have appealed to
the future, and I calmly await its judgment.
As to my record here at the extra session, or dur-
ing the presentsession,itremains,and will remain.
I do neither retract one sentiment that I have ut-
tered, nor would I obliterate a single vote which
I have given. I speak of the record as it will ap-
pear hereafter, and indeed stands now, upon the
Journals of this House and in the Congressional
Globe. And there is no other record, thank God,
and no act, or woid, or thoughtof mine,and never
has been, from the beginning, in public or in pri-
vate, of which any patriot ought to be ashamed.
Sir, it is the record as I made it, and as it exists
here to-day; and not as a mendacious and shame-
less press have attempted to make it up for mc.
Let us see who will grow tired of his record first.
Consistency, firmness, and sanity in the midst of
general madness—these made up my offense. But
" Time, the avenger,5' sets all things even; and I
abide his leisure.
My colleague declares that he docs not compre-
hend how I, a peace man at home, am now so
belligerent against England. Well, sir, if he can-
not understand the difference between a civil and
a foreign war, I despairof enlightening him. His
insinuations I scorn to reply to; and as to his
specific charges against me, raked out of the mass
of falsehoods created and set afloat for months
Here’s what’s next.
This book can be searched. Note: Results may vary based on the legibility of text within the document.
Tools / Downloads
Get a copy of this page or view the extracted text.
Citing and Sharing
Basic information for referencing this web page. We also provide extended guidance on usage rights, references, copying or embedding.
Reference the current page of this Book.
United States. Congress. The Congressional Globe: Containing the Debates and Proceedings of the Second Session of the Thirty-Seventh Congress, book, 1862; Washington D.C.. (https://digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc30810/m1/274/: accessed April 9, 2020), University of North Texas Libraries, UNT Digital Library, https://digital.library.unt.edu; crediting UNT Libraries Government Documents Department.