Page images



[blocks in formation]


This day, at twelve o'clock, the roll having been called The several subjects comprised in the message of the over by the Secretary of the Senate, [WALTER LOWRIE] President of the United States were this day referred to the it appeared that there were present thirty-five members; appropriate committees. No other business was transacted. whereupon, Mr. SMITH, of Maryland, President pro tempore, in the absence of the Vice President, took the chair, and called the Senate to order. The Secretary was directed to acquaint the House of Representatives that a quorum of the Senate was assembled, and ready to proceed to business; who returned, and informed the Senate that the other House had adjourned until to-morrow, at twelve o'clock.


A message was received from the House of Representatives, informing the Senate that a quorum of that House had assembled, and were ready to proceed to business. The usual standing committees of the Senate were then appointed.


On motion of Mr. SANFORD, of New York, it was Resolved, That a select committee be appointed to consider the state of the current coins, and to report such amendments of the existing laws concerning coins as may be deemed expedient.


Mr. ELLIS said, that, in consequence of the lamented death of his late colleague, the Honorable ROBERT H. ADAMS, he rose to present a resolution to the consideration of the Senate. The deceased was a native of Rockbridge county, Virginia. After completing the course of his education in Washington college, he studied law, and at an A communication having been received from the House of early period emigrated to Knoxville, in Tennessee, where Representatives, announcing the adoption by that House he pursued his profession with unremitting zeal and great of a resolution for the appointment of a committee, on success. To a mind at once clear and comprehensive, it their part, to wait on the President of the United States, appeared perceptible that his prospects would be more in conjunction with a committee on the part of the Se- flattering in the lower country, and he removed to Natchez, nate, and to inform him that both Houses had organized, Mississippi, in 1819. There, in the midst of a numerous and were ready to receive any communication that he and talented bar, without fortune or family influence, by might be pleased to make to them, the Senate concurred the force of high intellectual endowments and pleasing in the resolution, and appointed a committee on their manners, he rapidly rose to the highest honors of his propart. fession. Surrounded, as he was, by an intelligent and ex

Mr. GRUNDY, from the joint committee, subsequently tensive acquaintance, he was not long permitted to enjoy reported that they had performed that duty, and had re- the enviable distinction arising from professional merit ceived for answer from the President, that he would, this alone. In January last, he was called by the Legislature day, at half past one o'clock, make a communication, in of his adopted State to a seat in the councils of the na writing, to both Houses of Congress. tion. Here he was too well known to require eulogy.

In a few minutes the annual message was received from Mr. E. would only say, that the death of so young a man, the President, by A. J. DONELSON, his private Secretary. distinguished as he was, must be a loss to the nation. Five thousand copies of the message, and fifteen hundred It was publicly, deeply, and universally deplored in the copies of the accompanying documents, were ordered to State which he had the honor in part to represent. He, be printed for the use of the Senate. [For the message, therefore, moved the following resolution; which was see Appendix.] unanimously adopted:

The bill authorizing a subscription to the Louisville and Portland canal, returned by the President with objections to it, was laid on the table.


Resolved, unanimously, That the members of the Senate, from a desire of showing every mark of respect to the memory of the Honorable ROBERT H. ADAMS, deceased,


Impeachment of Judge Peck.--Post Office Department.

[DEC. 13, 14, 15, 1830.

late a Senator of this body from the State of Mississippi, peachment, on the part of the House of Representatives, will go into mourning for one month, by wearing crape on also came in, and took their seats. the left arm.

Mr. BUCHANAN, one of the managers, rose and said, Mr. KANE, of Illinois, said, that a paper which he had that the managers, on the part of the House of Represenpresented on the first day of the session, announced to the tatives, were ready to present the replication of that Senate the decease of his late colleague, Jonx MCLEAN, House, to the answer and plea of James H. Peck, judge of Illinois. He died, after a short illness, at his residence, of the District Court of the United States for the district on the 14th day of October last. Though not a native of of Missouri, to the articles of impeachment exhibited the State which he represented, he might well be claimed against him by that body. He then read the replication, as one of the favorite sons of Illinois. He had removed as follows:

there at an early age. There he commenced his career "The House of Representatives of the United States, in life; a career of usefulness and distinction, which had having considered the answer and plea of James H. Peck, fallen to the lot of few in that region of country. In pri- judge of the District Court of the United States for the vate life, he was remarkable for his benevolence, frank- district of Missouri, to the article of impeachment against ness, and independence of character. No one in the cir- him, by them exhibited, in the name of themselves, and cle in which he moved had a larger share of the confidence of all the People of the United States, reply, that the said and affections of his fellow men. He was by profession a James H. Peck is guilty, in such manner as he stands imlawyer, possessed of a vigorous mind, a rapid but easy elo- peached; and that the House of Representatives will be cution. These qualifications, added to an honesty of pur- ready to prove their charges against him, at such conpose, universally accorded to him, raised him to the front venient time and place as shall be appointed for that rank of his profession; and there sustained him. As a purpose."

statesman, the people of Illinois would long remember The Court, after some preliminary business, adjourned him as the author of many of the most valued portions of to Monday next, and the Senate till to-morrow. their statute books, and as the acute and able presiding [The notices of this trial, which will be found in the officer over the deliberations of the most numerous branch following pages, embrace only such reports as were given of their Legislature. Mr. MCLEAN had been twice elected from day to day, through the columns of the National to a seat in the Senate of the United States, and his last Intelligencer, for the public information, and to convey a election was the result of the unanimous vote of the mem-general idea of the merits of the case, and the course and bers of both branches of the General Assembly. In the character of the trial. They are mere sketches, and are to state of things which then existed, no stronger evidence be received as such only. A full report of the trial--the of the general esteem in which he was held by those who testimony and the arguments of the managers and counsel knew him best could well be given. In order to pay a pro---making a large volume, has been published separately.] per respect to the memory of such a man, Mr. KANE moved the adoption of the following resolution; which was unanimously agreed to:


referring petitions, and in the consideration of Executive This day was principally consumed in receiving and business.

Resolved, unanimously, That the members of the Senate, for the purpose of showing a proper respect to the memory of the Honorable JoHN MCLEAN, deceased, late a The Senate elected the Rev. HENRY VAN DYKE JOHNS Senator from the State of Illinois, will go into mourning to be their Chaplain for the current session. for one month, by wearing crape on the left arm.

On motion of Mr. ELLIS, of Mississippi, it was also Resolved, unanimously, That, as an additional evidence of respect to the memory of the deceased Senators from Mississippi and Illinois, the Senate do now adjourn, to meet on Monday next, at eleven o'clock.





The Senate took up for consideration the following rese lution, which was yesterday submitted by Mr. CLAYTON: "Resolved, That a committee be appointed to examine and report the present condition of the Post Office Department; in what manner the laws regulating that department are administered; the distribution of labor; the A message was received from the House of Represen-number of clerks, and the duties assigned to each; the tatives, announcing the adoption by that House of a repli- number of agents; where and how employed; the comcation to the answer and plea of Judge Peck to the article pensation of contractors; and, generally, the entire manof impeachment exhibited against him by them. nagement of the department; and whether further, and what, legal provisions may be necessary to secure the proper administration of its affairs."

At twelve o'clock, the Court of Impeachment for the trial of Judge PECK, of Missouri, was opened in due form by proclamation from the Marshal of the District of Co- Mr. WHITE had no objection to the proposed inquiry; lumbia. The Senators were ranged on two sets of but he felt generally indisposed to the raising of special benches, covered with green cloth, to the right and left committees, where the subject matter of a resolution beof the Chair occupied by the President of the Senate. longed properly to a standing committee. He, therefore, On motion of Mr. WOODBURY, the Secretary was order-hoped that the honorable mover of this resolution would ed to inform the House of Representatives, that the Se-so modify it as to refer it to the Committee on the Post nate had organized itself into a Court of Impeachment for Office and Post Roads, unless he could assign some reathe trial of James H. Peck, judge of the District Court of son for sending it to a special committee.

the United States for the district of Missouri, and were Mr. CLAYTON expressed the opinion that this inquiry ready to proceed to the trial; and that seats had been pre- was not necessarily the business of the Post Office Compared for the reception and accommodation of the mem-mittee. That committee had arduous and important dubers of the House of Representatives. ties to perform. The session would be short, and they


Shortly after the order was passed the respondent, would probably not have time to attend to any other mat accompanied by Mr. WIRT and Mr. MEREDITH, his counters than those which ordinarily belonged to them. sel, appeared at the bar of the Senate. They were con- thought that the importance of the subject now proposed ducted to seats, with a table before-them, prepared for required its reference to a special committee. He did not, therefore, feel inclined to accede to the suggestion of

their convenience.

In a few minutes, the managers, to conduct the im- the Senator from Tennessee.

« PreviousContinue »