23 May 1838
adams-john10 Neal Millikan Dueling Native Americans Indian Removal

23. V. Wednesday.


Floods of rain, in successive showers the whole day long— H.R.U.S. The house are to meet henceforth at ten O’Clock A.M. but this morning after the reading of the Journal, Mr Taliaferro asked that there should be a count of the members present and there were but 87. A call of the House was moved, and on taking the question by yeas and nays, they were 63 to 66 rejecting the call, but shewing a Quorum present— After the reports from Committees, Sampson Mason continued without finishing his critical review of the majority Report of the duelling Committee; which he scrutinized with great severity— Cambreleng interrupted, and finally arrested him by calling for the orders of the day, and he was so desirous of finishing that he was on the point of cutting 495cutting short his Speech— I intreated him not to curtail or abridge his remarks, but to wait for another day—which he finally concluded to do. On Mr Cushing’s Resolution, Elmore, waved his right to address the House— M’Kay asked leave to offer a Call on the Secretary of War, for an immediate return of the amount of additional allowance to the Cherokees for their removal proposed by his ultimatum addressed to their delegation— The rules were twice suspended, first to receive and then to pass this Resolution which was carried— Committee of the whole, Howard in the Chair, on the Bill of Appropriations to suppress Indian Hostilities— Bell moved an Amendment authorising an allowance of two Millions of dollars more to effect peaceably the removal of the Cherokees, and with their own consent— Wise made a long and ardent speech upon the general subject of our policy towards the Indians—exposing especially the baseness and perfidy of the pretended Treaty of New Echota— The complaints of the Seneca Indians were incidentally brought into the discussion, and Filmore had by some unnatural influence been induced to assume the defence of Schermerhorn’s swindling practices— Townes of Georgia undertook to answer Wise, but with little success.— Wise resumed and continued his Speech till near four O’Clock without concluding—frequently interrupted by Dawson, Legare, Graham, Grantland, Towns, and Downing the delegate from Florida— A Message from the President was received containing a Letter from the Governor of Maine to the Legislature of that State and Resolves adopted by them relating to the North-eastern boundary— Evans moved that the Message and Documents should be printed and the consideration of them postponed till Friday—which after some objection from Cambreleng was carried— Mr Webster had come in to the House, and had me called from my Seat to say, that this Message had been received in the Senate— That it was not satisfactory— That it was desirable that a joint Meeting of the delegations in both Houses of Massachusetts and Maine should be held to consult together on the subject, and that a previous meeting of the Massachusetts delegation would be expedient— I promised to give notice to the members from the State in the House; and to inform Mr Webster of the time and place for the first of these Meetings— The House adjourned soon after four— My Carriage was in waiting— J. Sergeant and J. P. Kennedy took seats with me, and I took them to their lodgings— The rain was falling in torrents.— This Evening, Charles and his wife paid a visit to President Van Buren—and I had one from Jagger, the Long-Island Barley-cake politician— This man so ignorant that he can scarcely read and write, with a small property not quite sufficient for his support; and with health of body fitted for useful industry, has abandoned all other occupations for politics, and writes, and publishes and circulates at his own expence, pamphlets and handbills against Andrew Jackson and Martin Van Buren, for which by his own account he gets nothing but ill will and persecution— He has been here three successive Winters; several weeks each time, and always comes to hold conversations and enquire of facts from me— I have advised him rather to return to his farm and his merchandize, without success— But he now came to take leave and said he should go for home to-morrow—