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etc. Handsome dinner provided, but the House, being on the bill for Amendment of Constitution, did not adjourn. At five we returned, and dined immediately; but before we rose from the table, we had a message by a door-keeper to attend at the Hall instantly. We were obliged to attend, which deprived us of all the sociability we had anticipated. After ten, we arrived at our lodgings.
Dec. 12, Monday. Presented a petition of Nathaniel and Wm. Smith, Newburyport. Committed to Committee on Commerce and Manufactures.
Dec. 15, Thursday. Took a ramble into Virginia, on the banks and rocks south of the Potomac. Collected Cryptogamous plants. Very pleasant solitary botanical walk.* Mr. Coffin, of Newburyport, here.
Dec. 26, Monday. Employed the day in preparing letters to accompany Mr. Tracy's speech on the Constitution, and making up the packages. Did not go to the House.
Dec. 31, Saturday. Highly entertained in making a tour with “Coxe” upon the stupendous mountains of the Alps, and in making extracts from his account of the fossils.
So has ended another year. It is gone! as irrecoverably gone as the days before the flood !
WASHINGTON, Dec. 30, 1803. CAPTAIN FITCH POOLE.
My Dear Sir :- We have been sending abroad a large number of Mr. Tracy's speeches in opposition to the amendment of the Constitution. This must be an apology for delay in answering your last favor. The part I have taken has fully
* WASHINGTOx, Dec. 16, 1803. I beg leave to introduce to your acquaintance a native of Maryland of the name of Mitchella.
To be plain with you, my dear Kate, this specimen of the Witchella repens was gathered by the Rev. Dr. Cutler, the Massachusetts botanist. He presented it to me as the plant hearing our family name, and that your curiosity may be gratified by seeing how the Mitchella looks. I inclose it to your ladyship-Dr. Nilchell's Letters to His Wife, from Washington, 1801-1513 ( Harper's Monthly, April, 1879).
of considerable length, to accompany them; and besides, we have so crowded the mail that it was agreed we would send no newspapers, nor mere letters of friendship, until these were dispatched, lest many of them should be thrown aside. The object has been to furnish the members of the several legislatures, especially N. England, with one of the speeches previous to their meeting, as they will have the amendment communicated for their adoption. I have inclosed one for Governor Foster, and should like to know whether he has received it. In a few days, will send one to you, if any are left. It has fallen to me to send a large number into the States of Rhode Island, New Hampshire, and Vermont, as well as Massachusetts, but have nearly got through with this job, which has been truly laborious. We entertain little doubt of the rejection of the amendment in four states—N. Hamp., Vass., Conn., and Delaware. If Vermont should reject it, in aldition to these, it can not go into operation. All the hope with respect to Vermont is founded on the opposition which Mr. Elliot, who we suppose has much influence there, gave to it when before the House here, and a belief that General Bradley, though he gave his vote for it, very much disapproves of it. You will see by the yeas and nays, annexed to the speech, that only three of the Mass. delegation voted for it, and that it was carried by the casting vote of the Speaker.
Dr. Eustis did well, and deserves much credit for the decided part he took. IIe gave the Democrats more trouble, and excited more apprehension, than all the opposition besides. I have seen no instance in which speaking in the House has had so much effect. Generally, it has none at all. But there is no man of the party which he professes to go with who is so much feared, so much courted, and so much dreaded. Whatever may be his real principles, he has done more, in checking, opposing, and defeating their wild measures, than all the minority. It happens almost daily, and I do believe, as circunstances are, he is, incomparably, the most useful member within our walls.
Whether a general system of Bankruptcy would be useful in our country, I have no doubt, on the supposition that an
We are not in a state to employ so severe a penalty. Great
'Jan. 1, 1804, Lord's Day. The year commenced with a very rainy day. I spent the day in my chamber, I hope not unprofitably.
Jan. 2, Jonday. Many of the Democrats waited on the President, but very few of the Federalists—I believe only one from New York State and four from Virginia. We had a very long sitting. Jan. 3. Tuesday. Very late sitting.
Very late sitting. Transcribing Coxe's Nat. Hist. of Switzerland.
Jan. 5, Thursday. A young Spanish officer and the wife of Jerome Bonaparte in the IIall, the Marchioness Yrujo and two other ladies in company.
We sat late. John Randolph brought forward his motion for the purpose of impeaching Judge Chase. I had an invitation to dine with the President on Saturday, but was previously engaged to dine with Mr. Van Ness. Sent apology to President.
Jan. 6, Friday. Last night finished extracts from Coxe’s Nat. Hist. Late sitting—on impeachments.
Jan. 7, Saturday. The House sat late. Dined at Major Van Ness’,* with several members of Congress. A very fine entertainment, and an agreeable time. We had the Spitzbergen
* Major John P. Van Ness, born in Ghent, Columbia Co., New York, 1770; educated at Columbia College; member of Congress from 1801
a better apple. Keeps well till February.
very cold. Dust in clouds. Potomac frozen over.
Jan. 12, Thursday. At Post-office and Hall. Transacted business with General Smith. The President filling his icehouse. About fifteen single-horse drays, hauling up from a small pond below his house. The cakes of ice about two inches thick, and one and two feet long and broad; taken up with spades.
Jan. 15, Lord's Day. Attended at Georgetown. Mr. Coffin, of Newburyport, preached for Mr. Balch. Returned and went again P. M. Potomac frozen over as far as Alexandria. Saw people on the ice.
Jan. 18, Wednesday. Attended at the Hall. Major Burnham and Dr. Adams arrived with Patent Shelling Machine. Took lodgings at Mr. Speak's.
Jan. 19, Thursday. Went with the Major and Doctor to Georgetown. Attended at the Hall.
Jan. 25, Wednesday. Waited on the President. Major Burnham and Dr. Adams brought their machine. The President mounted the carriage and turned it himself; much pleased with it. We went in and spent a little time. Attended at the House.
Jan. 30, Monday. Went to Georgetown early, with Mr. Pickering and Major Burnham. Called on Mr. Foxhall, the founder. He supposed the cylinder for the machine could not be cast.
[Dr. Cutler was confined with an inflamed and painful eye for some days, and could not observe the eclipse of the sun on the morning of February 11th.]
Feb. 13, Monday. At the Secretary of State's Office, in the case of Wm. Brown, impressed on board a British Frigate. Attended at the Capitol.
Feb. 15, Wednesday. Saw a specimen of the gold ore from North Carolina. Attended at the Hall.
to 1803. While a member of ('ongress, he received from President Jefferson a commission as Major of Militia for the District of Columbia, He died in Washington, March 7, 1810.—Dict. of Congress (Lanman).
shire) commenced in the Senate. The House adjourned and attended.
Mar. 3. Saturday. Contested election of Major Lewis before the House. Mr. Moore, who petitions for the seat, is admitted to the bar and pleads for himself. Mr. Jones (son of Dr. Jones, a member), a very young and a very small man, for Major Lewis, acquitted himself very handsomely indeed. Question not taken. Very cold day.
Mar. 6, Tuesday. At the Hall. Major Burnham and Jess. set out for Lancaster. Attended at the Secretary's Office on the business of Mr. Tyng. [Address to this letter is missiny.]
WASHINGTON, Jan. 10, 1804. My Dear Sir:
Since the amendment has passed, a bill for making the high salaries of public officers, about which the Democrats had raised so much clamor, a permanent establishment, has been agreed to in the House. The Senate, not content with fixing the salaries at the rate they stood, in the temporary law, although articles of living are, at least, 20 pr. ct. lower than when the salaries were raised, amended the bill by additions particularly to Granger of 1,000, and his chief clerk, 300 dollars more. The amendments have not been accepted by the House, and the bill is at rest for the present,
The impeachment of Judge Pickering, with no small exultation, has gone up to the Senate, in manner and form, but the trial, though daily expected, has not been had. The conduct of this unhappy man did not admit of justification, but the
* John Pickering, LL.D, graduated, Harvard University, 1761; lawyer and jurist; born, Newington. N. II., September 22, 1737; died, Portsmoutlı, April 11, 180); meniler of ide Convention which formed the Constitution of New Hampshire. In 1787, he was elected a member of the Convention which framed the Constitution of the United States, but declined. Was Judge of the Supreme Court of New Hampshire in 1790-5, and was at one period Chief-Justice. Subsequently, was Judge of the District Court of the United States for New Hampshire, but his reason becoming impaired, he was removed from office by im. peachment, in 1801.--Druke's Dictinnury Am. Biog.