[ocr errors]
[ocr errors][ocr errors][merged small]

barrassed our worshipers of the idol of Democracy, and what is to be done in this case is difficult to conjecture; and the difficulty seems to be increased by a rumor, just received, informing that L'Aussant is very troublesome, interferes in the government, and says he is to remain to see the treaty fulfilled and justice done to the French, and demanding an armed force to be immediately sent to aid the government in supporting his authority. Whether there is any real foundation for this rumor, I know not, but there are symptoms which would lead me to suspect it was not wholly groundless.

It has been my hope that our Legislature would order a general ticket for the election of the members of the next Congress, but have not yet seen any motion for this purpose in the reports of their doings. It is, however, a painful truth that, were the best abilities in N. England now to represent the federal interest, it would be wholly out of their power to do any thing important to their country.

Lately the minority have been almost totally silent, which appears to have more and better effect than debating.

A Joint Committee have reported an adjournment on the 12th.

Your friend and brother,


[ocr errors][ocr errors][ocr errors][ocr errors]


WASHINGTON, March 13, 1804. My Dear Sir:

The trial of Judge Pickering was closed yesterday, and sentence of condemnation passed ayes, 20, nays, 10. This trial, so far as respects mere forms, has been conducted with much dignity and solemnity. This is wholly owing to Mr. Burr. He presides in the Senate in a manner which reflects much honor and respectability upon him as a man of taste and judgment. But in the course of this trial we have the fullest demonstration of the unbounded influence of party spirit upon the bench of judgment. I believe every impartial hearer would have said that insanity had been

in the clearest and most satisfactory manner. The

my mind, was clear that Mr. Pickering was in

ze insane, but afterward, as a crazy man, he

[ocr errors]


visited grog-shops, and indulged himself in drinking. now, when he is not under the influence of strong drink, he discovers the clearest evidence of a deranged state of mind.

It has long been an established rule, in judicial courts in Europe and America, that an insane person can not be tried for any crime. If a murderer should become insane, after he was committed to prison, he would not be tried while his insanity remained, or if condemned and afterward become insane he would not be executed.

But in this case this plea was overruled, and he must suffer this cruel sentence.

The House attended in the Senate Chamber, where chairs were provided for them, in the course of the trial yesterday, while the forins of condemnation were passed.

On our return to the House, the report of the Committee for impeaching Judge Chase was called up and passed. The evidence, which had been printed, we had some time before laid on our table. The affidavits were all taken ex parte, but on a careful examination the evidence appeared to me more in favor of the judge than against him. Instead of being guilty of high crimes and misdemeanors, there appears to me no charge of blame.

A high coloring, in some instances, is given by witnesses who have been, and are, his implacable enemies, but there can be very little doubt, if the judge could have the opportunity to appear in his own defense, all this would be wiped off. The Demo's expected the Federalists would come forward and in long debates would oppose the impeachment. But it was fully ascertained that debating would be to no purpose, and we agreed only to vote and not to debate. Mr. Griswold only rose and stated to the House that the Committee of Impeachment, of which he was a member, never went into an examination of the evidence, never so much as discussed the subject in Committee, and when the Chairman brought in his report he and Mr. Huger, the only Federal members, were not notified to attend, and as it was certain the House were determined to impeach the Judge, it was in vain to make any observations, and he should only call for the yeas and nays. There appeared a solemn awe in the House ;

[ocr errors]

The vote stood--ayes, 73, nays, 32. A motion was imme-
diately made for an adjournment. I have never seen more of
spirit and bitter feeling after adjournment among the mem-
bers. A group of Democrats, it is said, made a pretty vio-
lent attack on Mr. Dana for not defending the Judge before
the House. His reply, though it might sound harsh, was so
appropriate and cutting, I can not forbear giving it to you.
After censuring, in strong terms, their favorite work of de-
struction, he told them the clearest argument had no effect ;
it was folly to reason with them, for he should just as soon
think of Throwing snow-balls into h-11, to put out the fire, as
to convince Democrats by reasoning."
I am your affectionate parent,


WASHINGTON, March 20, 1804. My Dear Sir:-I have time only to write you a very few lines, and just to inform you my son, Ephraim, has concluded not to go on to Hamilton, at this time, but will set out, in a day or two, on his return.

A bill has passed the second reading in the Senate to remove the seat of government to Baltimore, and making provision for transporting the public offices, and providing the necessary public buildings. When Congress is once mounted on wheels, and set a rolling, I believe it impossible to say where the government will roll to, and when it will stop. Mr. Dawson has offered a motion to the House for re-ceding this territory back to Maryland and Virginia. What reasons have been given I have not heard, as we have not taken the matter up. It is believed the one which operated the most powerfully is, that this city has the misfortune to be called after the name of Washington. The people of this city are, as might be expected, extremely irritated. If these measures should be carried, which I can scarcely think possible, we may

have a little specimen of that kind of government these exclusive friends of the people are advocating-mobocracy-before we we leave the city.

[ocr errors][merged small]

You have received the painful intelligence of the loss of the frigate, Philadelphia. A petition from a large number of the citizens of Philadelphia has just been read and committed, praying government to take immediate measures for liberating these unfortunate captives. Whether any energetic measures will be adopted, with respect to the state of Tripoli, is very doubtful.

Your affectionate parent,


Mar. 7, Wednesday. At the Hall. Randolph made a whining, coaxing, threatening, and personally abusive speech, on his string of Georgia resolutions.

Mar. 8, Thursday. Wind very high, dust in clouds. Went to Holt's Garden; got a variety of seeds. Amt., 100 cents. House adjourned early, to attend the funeral of General (Daniel) Heister. Procession walked from Lovell’s Hotel, where he died, round President's Square. The corpse carried on through Georgetown to Hagerstown, where he lived. His wife present—he had no child. House voted mourning for one month. Biscuit and wine provided, for the members to refresh themselves, at Lovell's.

Mar. 12, Monday. Attended at the House. Judgment passed on Judge Pickering.

Mar. 13, Tuesday. At the House. We agreed to adjourn on the 26th.

Mar. 14, Wednesday. At the House. Cold and fair. This evening my son Ephraim arrived from Marietta, and took lodgings here. His arrival a great relief to my mind.

Mar. 15, Thursday. With my son most of the day. At the Hall some of the time.

Mar. 16, Friday. At Holt's Garden, procured a chrysanthemum root for 124 cents. Attended at the Hall.

Mar. 17, Saturday. Ephraim went to Alexandria. Attended Hall.

Mar. 20, Tuesday. Busy with Ephraim. Went to the Hall. Call of the House at 4 o'clock.

Mar. 21, Wednesday. Call of the House at half past ten. The call commenced before the time. Upward of twenty of to take place. We retired to a committee room, and went in a body into the House. After some fuss about it, the call for the remainder of the session was rescinded.

Mar. 22, Thursday. Ephraim set out on his return to Ohio. Went to Alexandria. At the Hall. Finished reading the 20 vol. of Gibbon's Roman Empire.

Mar. 23, Friday. At the IIall. Letter from Major Burnham. Obtained copies of Iloxie's description and drawings of his Machine.

Mar. 24, Saturday. At the Hall. At Georgetown, sold a machine for $20--received the cash. Preparing for my journey.

Mar. 26, Monday. Attended at the House. Did very little; very much in confusion. Galleries extremely full of people. Caricature of Wright, with the Capitol on his back, traveling off, and calling to Dayton to help; reply, “ I will see you hanged first.” People crying from the windows, “Stop thief!” A great loaf of bread, or, rather, a great many small loaves, arranged one after the other. Great fuss. President there. Music. Bakers dressed in white jackets and pantaloons, and white aprons. Had in the Capitol wine, cheese, etc. Effigies of Wright, Randolph, and others, prepared to be burnt. The head men, it was said, were arrested by the order of the Senate. These, it seems, were some of Duane's ** Untied Irishmen.Duane's mistake in putting the the wrong side of the i, for United, made them Untied Irishmen. House and Senate rescinded the resolution to adjourn to-day. We sit to-morrow.

Mar. 27, Tuesday. House adjourned at eight in the evening, after a report from the President that he had nothing to communicate, and from the Senate that they were ready to adjourn, to meet on the first Monday in November next. Settled all bills, and ready to start.

« VorigeDoorgaan »