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of the government of the United States, has been fixed, and announced by proclamation ; which district will comprehend lands on both sides of the river Potowmac, and the towns of Alexandria and Georgetown. A city has also been laid out agreeably to a plan which will be placed before Congress; and as there is a prospect favoured by the rate of sales which have already taken place, of ample funds for carrying on the necessary publick buildings, there is every expectation of their due progress.
The completion of the census of the inhabitants, for which provision was made by law, has been duly notified, (excepting in one instance, in which the return has been informal ; and another, in which it has been omilted or miscarried) and the returns of the officers who were charged with this duty, which will be laid before you, will give you the pleasing as. surance, that the present population of the United States borders on four millions of persons.
It is proper also to inform you, that a further loan of two millions and an ball of forins has been completed in Holland; the terms of which are simliar to those of the one last announced, except as to a small reduction of charges. Another, on like terms, for six millions of florins, had been set on foot, under circumstances that assured an immediate completion.
Gentlemen of the Senate,-Two treaties which have been provisionally concluded with the Cherokees, and Six Nations of Indians, will be laid before you for your consideration and rati. fication.
Genilemen of the House of Representatives,In entering upon the discharge of your legislative trust, you must anticipate with pleasure, that many of the difficulties, necessarily incident to the first arrangements of a new government, for an extensive country, have been happily surmounted by the zealous and judicious exertions of your predecessors in co-operation with the other branch of the Legislature. The important objects which remain to be accomplished, will, I am persuaded, be conducted upon principles equally comprehensive, and equally well calculated for the advancement of the general weal.
The time limited for receiving subscriptions to the loans proposed by the act for making provision for the debt of the United States, having expired, statements from the proper department, will, as soon as possible, apprize you of the exact result. Enough, however, is known already to afford an assurance that the views of that act have been substantially fulfilled. The subscription in the domestick debt of the United States, has em. braced by far the greatest proportion of that debt; affording at the same time, proof of the general satisfaction of the publick creditors with the system which has been proposed to their acceptance, and of the spirit of accommodation to the conve. nience of the government with which they are actuated. The
subscriptions in the debts of the respective states, as far as the provisions of the law have permitted, may be said to be yet more general. The part of the debt of the United States which remains unsubscribed, will naturally engage your further deliberations.
It is particularly pleasing to me to be able to announce to you, that the revenues which have been established, promise to be adequate to their objects, and may be permitted, if no unforeseen exigency occurs, to supersede, for the present, the necessity of any new burdens upon our constituents.
An object which will claim your early attention, is a provision for the current service of the ensuing year, together with such ascertained demands upon the treasury, as require to be immediately discharged, and such casualties as may have arisen in the execution of the publick business, for which no specifick appropriation may have yet been made; of all which, a proper estimate will be laid before you.
Gentlemen of the Senate, and House of Representatives, I shall content myself with a general reference to former com. munications for several objects, upon which the urgency of other affairs has hitherto postponed any definitive resolution. Their importance will recall them to your attention; and I trust that the progress already made in the most arduous arrangements of the government will afford you leisure to resume them with advantage.
There are, however, some of them of which I cannot forbear a more particular mention ; these are, the Militia-The Post, Office and Post-Roads- The Mint-Weights and Measures a Provision for the Sale of the Vacant Lands of the United States.
The first is certainly an object of primary importance, whether viewed in reference to the national security, to the satisfaction of the community, or to the preservation of order. In connexion with this, the establishment of competent magazines and arsenals, and the fortification of such places as are peculiarly important and vulnerable naturally present themselves to consideration. The safety of the United States, under divine protection, ought to rest on the basis of systematic and solid arrangement; exposed as little as possible to the hazards of fortuitous circumstances.
The importance of the Post-Office and Post-Roads, on a plan sufficiently liberal and comprehensive, as they respect the expe. dition, safety and facility of communication, is increased by the instrumentality in diffusing a knowledge of the laws and pro. ceedings of the government; which, while it contributes to the security of the people, serves also to guard them against the effects of misrepresentation and misconception. The establishment of additional cross posts, especially to some of the important points in the western and northern parts of the Union, cannot fail to be of material utility.
The disorders in the existing currency, and especially the scarcity of small change, a scarcity so peculiarly distressing to the poorer classes, strongly recommend the carrying into im. mediate effect the resolution already entered into concerning the establishment of a Mint. Measures have been taken pursus ant to that resolution for procuring some of the most necessary artists, together with the requisite apparatus.
An uniformity in the weights and measures of the country is among the important objects submitted to you by the constitu. tion, and if it can be derived from a standard at once invariabla and universal, must be no less honourable to the publick councils than conducive to the publick convenience.
A provision for the sale of the vacant lands of the United States, is particularly urged, among other reasons, by the important considerations; that they are pledged as a fund for reimbursing the publick debt ; that if timely and judiciously applied, they may save the necessity of burdening our citizens with new taxes for the extinguishment of the principal ; and that being free to discharge the principal, but in a limited pro
of its right.
MESSAGE FROM THE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES TO CONGRESS,
MARCH 5, 1792. KNOWING the friendly interest you take in whatever may pro. mote the happiness and prosperity of the French nation, it is with pleasure that I lay before you the translation of a letter which I have received from his most Christian Majesty, an. nouncing to the United States of America, his acceptance of the constitution presented to him by his nation.
Translation of a letter from the King of France, of Sept.
19, 1791. Very dear, great Friends and Allies,
We make it our duty to inform you, that we have accepted the Constitution which has been presented to us in the name of the nation, and according to which France will be henceforth governed.
We do not doubt that you take an interest in an event so im. portant to our kingdom, and to us ; and it is with real pleasure we take this occasion to renew to you assurances of the sincere friendship we bear you : Whereupon we pray God to
have you, very dear, great friends and allies, in his just and holy keeping.-Written at Paris, the 19th of September, 1791. Your good Friend and Ally. LOUIS.
MONTMORIN. To the United States of North America.
MESSAGE FROM THE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES TO CONGRESS.
APRIL 13, 1792. I HAVE thought it proper to lay before you a communication of the 11th instant, from the minister plenipotentiary of Great Britain, to the Secretary of State, relative to the commerce of the two countries ; together with their explanatory correspondence, and the Secretary of State's letter to me on the subject.
Philadelphia, April 13, 1792. SIR,—I have the honour to lay before you a communication from Mr. Hammond, minister plenipotentiary of his Britannic Majesty, covering a clause of a statute of that country relative to its commerce with this; and notifying a determination to carry it into execution henceforward. - Conceiving that the determi. nation announced could not be really meant as extensively as the words import, I asked and received an explanation from the minister, as expressed in the letter and answer herein enclosed; and, on consideration of all circumstances, I cannot but confide in the opinion expressed by him, that its sole object is to exclude foreign vessels from the islands of Jersey and Guernsey.
The want of proportion between the motives expressed and the measure, its magnitude and consequences, total silence as to the proclamation on which the intercourse between the two countries has hitherto hung, and of which, in this broad sense, it would be a revocation, and the recent manifestations of the disposition of that government, to concur with this in mutual offices of friendship and good will, support his construction,
The minister moreover assured me verbally, that he would immediately write to his court for an explanation, and in the mean time is of opinion, that the usual intercourse of commerce between the two countries (Jersey and Guernsey excepted) need not be suspended. I have the honour to be, &c.
THOMAS JEFFERSON. The President of the United States.
Philadelphia, April 11, 1792. SIR,—I have received by a circular despatch from my court, directions to inform this government, that, considerable incon.
veniences having arisen from the importation of tobacco in foreign vessels into the ports of his majesty's dominions, contrary to the act of the 12th Charles 2. chap. 18. sect. 3. (commonly called the navigation act) it has been determined in future strictly to enforce this clause, of which I take the liberty of enclosing to you a copy ; and I have the honour to be, with perfect esteem and respect, Sir, your most obedient humble servant.
GEORGE HAMMOND. Mr. Jefferson.
12 Charles 2. Chap. 18. Sect. 3. And it is further enacted by the authority aforesaid, that no goods or commodities whatsoever, of the growth, production, or manufacture of Africa, Asia, or America, or of any part thereof, which are described or laid down in the usual maps or charts of those places, be imported into England, Ireland, or Wales, islands of Cuernsey and Jersey, or town of Berwick upon Tweed, in any other ship or ships, vessel or vessels, whatsoever, but in such as do truly and without fraud, belong only to the people of England or Ireland, Dominion of Wales, or town of Berwick upon Tweed, or of the lands, islands, plantations or territories in Asia Africa, or America, to his majesty belonging, as the proprietors and right owners thereof, and whereof the master and three-fourths at least of the mariners are English, under the penalty of the forfeiture of all such goods and com. modities, and of the ship or vessel in which they were imported, with all her guns, tackle, furniture, ammunition and apparel, one moiety to his majesty, his heirs and successors, and the other moiety to him or them who shall seize, inform, or sue for the same, in any court of record, by bill, information, plaint or other action, wherein no essoine, protection, or wager of law shall be allowed.
Philadelphia, April 12, 1792. SIRI am this moment favoured with the letter you did me the honour of writing yesterday, covering the extract of a British statute forbidding the admission of foreign vessels into any ports of the British dominions, with goods or commodities of the growth, production, or manufacture of America.
The effect of this appears to me so extensive, as to induce a doubt whether I understand rightly the determination to enforce it, which you notify, and to oblige me to ask of you, whether we are to consider it as so far a revocation of the proclamation of your government, regulating the commerce between the two countries, and that henceforth no articles of the growth, production, or manufacture of the United States, are to be received in the ports of Great Britain, or Ireland, in vessels belonging to the citizens of the United States ?
I have the honour to be, &c. THOMAS JEFFERSON. The minister plenipotentiary of Great Britain.