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teracted by the ordinary cognizance of the laws, and by an exertion of the powers confided to me. Where their danger was not imminent, they have been borne with from sentiments of regard to his nation, from a sense of their friendship toward us, from a conviction that they would not suffer us to remain long exposed to the action of a person who has so little respected our mutual dispositions, and from a reliance on the firmness of my fellow-citizens in their principles of peace and order. In the meantime, I have respected and pursued the stipulations of our treaties, according to what I judged their true, sense, and have withheld no act of friendship which their affairs have called for from us, and which justice to others left us free to perform. I have gone further. Rather than employ force for the restitution of certain vessels which I deemed the United States bound to restore, I thought it more advisable to satisfy the parties by avowing it to be my opinion that, if restitution were not made, it would be incumbent on the United States to make compensation. The papers now communicated will more particularly apprize you of these transactions.

The vexations and spoliations understood to have been committed on our vessels and commerce by the cruisers and officers of some of the belligerent powers, appeared to require attention. The proofs of these, however, not having been brought forward, the description of citizens supposed to have suffered were notified that, on furnishing them to the executive, due measures would be taken to obtain redress of the past and more effectual provisions against the future. Should such documents be furnished, proper representations will be made thereon, with a just reliance on a redress proportioned to the exigency of the case.

The British government having undertaken, by orders to the commanders of their armed vessels, to restrain generally our commerce in corn and other provisions to their own ports and those of their friends, the instructions now communicated were immediately forwarded to our minister at that court. In the meantime, some discussions on the subject took place between him and them. These are also laid before you, and I may expect to learn the result of his special instructions in time to make it known to the legislature during their present session.

Very early after the arrival of a British minister here, mutual explanations on the inexecution of the treaty of peace were entered into with that minister. These are now laid before


information. On the subject of mutual interest between this country and Spain, negotiations and conferences are now depending. The public good requiring that the present state of these should be made known to the legislature in confidence only, they shall be the subject of a separate and subsequent communication.


August 7, 1794.

WHEREAS, combinations to defeat the execution of the laws laying duties upon spirits distilled within the United States and upon stills have, from the time of the commencement of those laws, existed in some of the western parts of Pennsylvania : and whereas, the said combinations, pro

ceeding in a manner subversive equally of the just authority of govern ment and of the rights of individuals, have hitherto effected their dangerous and criminal purpose by the influence of certain irregular meetings whose proceedings have tended to encourage and uphold the spirit of opposition by misrepresentations of the laws calculated to render them odious; by endeavors to deter those who might be so disposed from accepting offices under 1šiem through fear of public resentments and of injury to person and property, and to compel those who had accepted such offices by actual violence to surrender or forbear the execution of them; by circulating vindictive measures against all who should otherwise, directly or indirectly, aid in the execution of the said laws, or who, yielding to the dictates of conscience and to a sense of obligation, should themselves comply therewith; by actually injuring and destroying the property of persons who were understood to have so complied; by inflicting cruel, humiliating punishments upon private citizens for no other cause than that of appearing to be the friends of the laws; by interrupting the public officers on the highways, abusing, assaulting, and otherwise ill treating them; by going to their houses in the night, gaining admittance by force, taking away their papers, and committing other outrages; employing for these unwarrantable purposes the agency of armed banditti, disguised in such a mapner as for the most part to escape discovery: and whereas, the endeavors of the legislature to obviate objections to the said laws, by lowering the duties and by other alterations conducive to the convenience of those whom they immediately affected (though they have given satisfaction in other quarters), and the endeavors of the executive officers to conciliate a compliance with the laws, by expostulation, by forbearance, and even by recommendations founded on the suggestion of local considerations, have been disappointed of their effect by the machinations of persons whose industry to excite resistance has increased with the appearance of a disposition among the people to relax in their opposition and to acquiesce in the laws; insomuch that many persons in the said western parts of Pennsylvania have at length been hardy enough to perpetrate acts which I am advised amount to treason, being overt acts of levying war against the United States; the said persons having, on the sixteenth and seventeenth of July last, proceeded in arms (on the second day amounting to several hundred) to the house of John Neville, inspector of the revenues for the fourth survey of the districts of Pennsylvania—having repeatedly attacked the said house with the persons therein, wounding some of them-having seized David Lennox, marshal of the district of Pennsylva nia, who previously thereto had been fired upon while in the execution of his duty, by a party of men, detaining him for some time prisoner, till for the preservation of his life and obtaining of his liberty he found it necessary to enter into stipulations to forbear the execution of certain official duties touching processes issuing out of the court of the United Statesand having finally obliged the said inspector of the revenue and the marshal, from considerations of personal safety, to fly from this part of the country, in order, by a circuitous route, to proceed to the seat of government, avowing as the motives of these outrageous proceedings an intention to prezent by force of arms the execution of the said laws, to oblige the said inspector of the revenues to renounce his office, to withstand by open violence the lawful authority of the government of the United States, and to compel thereby an alteration in the measures of the legislature, and a repeal of the laws aforesaid : and whereas, by a law of the United States,

entitled, “ An act to provide for calling forth the militia to execute the laws of the Union, suppress insurrections, and repel invasions,” it is enacted, " that whenever the laws of the United States shall be opposed, or the execution thereof obstructed, in any state by combinations too powerful to be suppressed by the ordinary course of judicial proceedings, or by the power vested in the marshals by that act, the same being notified by an associate justice or the district judges, it shall be lawful for the president of the United States to call forth the militia of said state to suppress such combinations, and to cause the laws to be duly executed. And if the militia of a state where such combinations may happen, shall refuse or shall be insufficient to suppress the same, it shall be lawful for the president, if the legislature of the United States shall not be in session, to call forth and employ such numbers of the militia of any other state or states most convenient thereto as may be necessary; and the use of the militia so to be called forth may be continued, if necessary, until the expiration of thirty days after the commencement of the ensuing session ; Provided always, that whenever it may be necessary in the judgment of the president to use the military force hereby directed to be called forth, the president shall forthwith, and previous thereto, by proclamation, command such insurgents to disperse, and retire peaceably to their respective abodes within a limited time :” and whereas, James Wilson, an associate justice, on the fourth instant, by writing under his hand, did, from evidence which had been laid before him, notify to me that " in the counties of Washington and Allegany, in Pennsylvania, the laws of the United States are opposed, and the execution thereof obstructed, by combinations too powerful to be suppressed by the ordinary course of judicial proceedings, or by the powers vested in the marshal of that district :"

And whereas, it is in my judgment necessary, under the circumstances of the case, to take measures for calling forth the militia in order to suppress the combination aforesaid, and to cause the laws to be duly executed; and I have accordingly determined so to do, feeling the deepest regret for the occasion, but withal the most solemn conviction that the essential interests of the Union demand it, that the very existence of government and the fundamental principles of social order are materially involved in the issue, and that the patriotism and firmness of all good citizens are seriously called upon as occasion may require, to aid in the effectual suppression of so fatal a spirit :

Wherefore, and in pursuance of the provision above recited, I, George Washington, president of the United States, do hereby command all persons, being insurgents as aforesaid, and all others whom it may concern, on or before the first day of September next, to disperse and return peaceably to their respective abodes. And I do moreover warn all persons whomsoever against aiding, abetting, or comforting, the perpetrators of the aforesaid treasonable acts; and do require all officers, and other citizens, according to their respective duties and the law of the land, to exert their utmost endeavors to prevent and suppress such dangerous proceedings.

In testimony whereof, I have caused the seal of the United States of America to be affixed to these presents, and signed the same with my nand. Done at the city of Philadelphia, the seventh day of August, one thousand seven hundred and ninety-four, and of the independence of the United States of America the nineteenth.



SEPTEMBER 25, 1794.

WHEREAS, from a hope that the combination against the constitution and laws of the United States in certain of the western counties of Pennsylvania, would yield to time and reflection, I thought it sufficient in the first instance rather to take measures for calling forth the militia than immediately to embody them ; but the moment is now come when the overtures of forgiveness, with no other condition than a submission to law, have been only partially accepted; when every form of conciliation not inconsistent with the being of government has been adopted without effect; when the well-disposed in those counties are unable by their influence and example to reclaim the wicked from their fạry, and are compelled to associate in their own defence; when the proffered lenity has been perversely misinterpreted into an apprehension that the citizens will march with reluctance; when the opportunity of examining the serious consequences of a treasonable opposition has been employed in propagating principles of anarchy, endeavoring through emissaries to alienate the friends of order from its support, and inviting its enemies to perpetrate similar acts of insurrection; when it is manifest that violence would continue to be exercised upon every attempt to enforce the laws; when, therefore, government is set at defiance, the contest being whether a small portion of the United States shall dictate to the whole Union, and, at the expense of those who desire peace, indulge a desperate ambition :

Now, therefore, I, George Washington, president of the United States, in obedience to that high and irresistible duty consigned to me by the constitution “ to take care that the laws be faithfully executed,” deploring that the American name should be sullied by the outrages of citizens on their own government, commiserating such as remain obstinate from delusion, but resolved, in perfect reliance on that gracious Providence which so signally displays its goodness toward this country, to reduce the refractory to a due subordination to the laws, do hereby declare and make known, with a satisfaction which can be equalled only by the merits of the militia summoned into service from the states of New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Maryland, and Virginia, that I have received intelligence of their patriotic alacrity in obeying the call of the present, though painful, yet commanding necessity ; that a force which, according to every reasonable expectation, is adequate to the exigency, is already in motion to the scene of disaffection ; that those who shall have confided or shall confide in the protection of government shall meet full succor under the standard and from the arms of the United States; that those who, having offended against the laws, have since entitled themselves to indemnity, will be treated with the most liberal good faith, if they shall not have forfeited their claim by any subsequent conduct, and that instructions are given accordingly.

•And I do moreover exhort all individuals, officers and bodies of men to contemplate with abhorrence the measures leading directly or indirectly to those crimes which produce this resort to military coercion ; to check, in their respective spheres, the efforts of misguided or designing men to substitute their misrepresentation in the place of truth, and their discontents in the place of stable government; and to call to mind that, as the people of the United States have been permitted, under the Divine favor, in per

fect freedom, after solemn deliberation, and in an enlightened age, to elect their own government, so will their gratitude for this inestimable blessing be best distinguished by firm exertion to maintain the constitution and the laws.

And lastly, I again warn all persons whomsoever and wheresoever, not to abet, aid, or comfort, the insurgents aforesaid, as they will answer the contrary at their peril ; and I do also require all officers and other citizens, as far as may be in their power, to bring under the cognizance of the laws all offenders in the premises.

In testimony whereof, I have caused the seal of the United States of America to be affixed to these presents, and signed the same with my hand. Done at the city of Philadelphia, the twenty-fifth day of September, one thousand seven hundred and ninety-four, and of the independence of the United States of America the nineteenth.



NOVEMBER 19, 1794.

Fellow-Citizens of the Senate and House of Representatwes :

When we call to mind the gracious indulgence of Heaven, by which the American people became a nation ; when we survey the general prosperity of our country, and look forward to the riches, power, and happiness, to which it seems destined ; with the deepest regret do I announce to you that, during your recess, some of the citizens of the United States have been found capable of an insurrection. It is due, however, to the character of our government, and to its stability, which can not be shaken by the enemies of order, freely to unfold the course of this event.

During the session of the year one thousand seven hundied and ninety, it was expedient to exercise the legislative power, granted by the constitution of the United States, “ to lay and collect excises.” In a majority of the states, scarcely an objection was made to this mode of taxation. In some, indeed, alarms were at first conceived, until they were banished by reason and patriotism. In the four western counties of Pennsylvania, a prejudice, fostered and embittered by the artifice of men who labored for an ascendency over the will of others by the guidance of their passions, produced symptoms of riot and violence. It is well known that Congress did not hesitate to examine the complaints which were presented, and to relieve them as far as justice dictated or general convenience would permit. But the impression which this moderation made on the discontented did not correspond with what it deserved. The arts of delusion were no longer confined to the efforts of designing individuals. The very forbearance to press prosecution was misinterpreted into a fear of urging the execution of the laws, and associations of men began to denounce threats against the officers employed. From a belief that by a more formal concert their operation might be defeated, certain self-created societies assumed the tone of condemnation. Hence, while the greater part of Pennsylvania itself were conforming themselves to the acts of excise, a few counties were resolved to frustrate them. It was now per.

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