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“ First : In consequence of and the complicity of Mr. Floyd in the further Evidence of Mr.
the delay above referred to. frauds charged-was made February 12th. Cobb's Criminalty.
" Second: That directly after It covered the entire ground of the facts of the application for such bonds, and the failure of the abstraction, and the incidental transacthe Government to furnish them, the then Secre- tions by which the fraud was accompanied. tary of the Treasury announced publicly in market. It was a sad revelation for the American peothat in the event of the success of the Republican party in the ensuing election, the Southern States would with ple to read, and tended to strengthen the draw from the Union, and the Government be broken growing sentiment of indignation against up; whereby the credit of the United States was the Administration. The credit of Governimpaired, and the market value of the bonds de- ment ruined; the property of Government pressed ; or, in other words, as they contended, the specially placed in the way
The Record of bonds were rendered 'a damaged article, without of seizure, and seized to the
Dishonor. fault of the buyers.'
amount of many millions; “ Third: That the Government had thereby lost the tampering with treason to such an exthe power to deliver the securities contracted for.
tent as to encourage it even to unpremedi“Fourth: That their contract was for bonds of the tated lengths;-all to be crowned by a direct United States, having the faith of all the States robbery of the Treasury of millions, could not pledged for their redemption; but, before the expiration of the time for their delivery, the unity of the excite, in the breasts of a people not dead to States was invaded by the establishment, pro forma, wrong, any other feeling than that of shame by one of the States, of a separate and independent and indignation. Even the warmest partisans Government.”
of Mr. Buchanan could find no excuse, no As the Presidential election was to be af- palliation, for the condition of things; and fected by such a representation, we here have execrations came from men slow to forget the evidence of the Secretary's attempt to in- party affinities, but too loyal to suffer humilfluence that election by the strong leverage iation in silence. Whether time will prove which ten millions of dollars would give. the censure heaped upon the Chief Magistrate His representations, it will be seen, were to have been just or unjust, remains to be made after the bids had been put in, but be seen ; but one fact is indubitable, that no man fore the bonds were delivered; and, as the in America ever was so generally and so unbidders were not served until after the day qualifiedly condemned-to use no harsher of election, the retention of the bonds was
word. to cause a panic among the bankers, and com We can give but a reference to the lengthy pel them to lend all the power of their vast report made by the Committee, of which resources to throw the elections in New York Morris, (Dem.,) of Illinois, was Chairman. and New Jersey against the Republican nom- The summary of the investigations was given inee. When Mr. Toombs said, in the Mont- in the following paragraphs : gomery Congress, in proposing Howell Cobb
“ In relation to the acceptfor President, [see page 335,] that “he had ances issued unconditionally Report on Mr. Floyd's been illustrious in the arena of the General by the late Secretary of War,
Default. Government”-that “his name was coexten- your Committee deem it their duty to state all the sive with the length and breadth of the whole facts they have been able to discover, as fully as country”-he could not have spoken in irony; possible. They amount, in the aggregate, to the and yet, such was Mr. Cobb's reputation in enormous sum of $6,179,395. Add thereto the conthose circles where he was best known, that ditional acceptances which have already been the great agitator's words were only true in thrown back upon the Government through the an ironical sense. He, evidently, was valued agency of Mr. Bailey, and the sum-total is $6,977,395.
This estimate is based upon data furnished by the at Montgomery in proportion to the wrong war Department
. It appears, therefrom, that ache had done the General Government and to ceptances to the amount of $840,000 were returned Northern interests.
to the Department for cancellation. Mr. Russell, The report of the House Select Committee however, claims to have returned only $200,000 or appointed December 24th-to investigate the $250,000. He further states that the acceptances great robbery of bonds, (see pages 113–114,] / which he did return were those which had matured
REPORT ON MR. FLOYD'S DEFAULT.
in his own pocket, and could not, | bankers in New York, who Report on Mr.
Report on Mr. therefore, be negotiated. But were frightened at the Floyd's Default.
Floyd's Default. this assertion is positively cona | amount of these acceptances tradicted by the indorsements on the returned accept on the market; and had, at the President's reances, and by the testimony of Mr. Irwin, a clerk in quest, called upon Mr. Floyd to warn him of the War Department. From the careless and irre- the dangers of this reckless use of his official sponsible manner in which business was transacted by that gentleman and the late Secretary of War, and name. Floyd, two days after the interview, from the fact that it was the habit of Governor Floyd wrote to Mr. Benjamin to thank him for his to issue acceptances at the Department or at his advice in the matter, at the same time promhouse, or at whatever place he happened to be, and ising to cease from any further issues of paper other consideratious, it is a matter of great uncer- in advance of work performed by the Utah tainty whether or not the $840,000 should be deduct- Army Supply Contractors, Messrs. Russell, ed from the sum heretofore stated. The probability Majors, and Waddell. How he kept even is, that when the acceptances were returned to Gov- this promise the Committee tell us; ernor Floyd by Mr. Russell, he accepted others at " It has already been shown that, contrary to the asthe same time, for the same amount, of which there sertion of Gov. Floyd, no practice of issuing acceptwas no registry made. It is deemed safest to pro- ances had ever prevailed in the War Department ceed upon the supposition that the acceptances previous to its introduction by himself ; that he issued made in the place of those returned were registered. these acceptances indiscriminately, and without refeUpon this hypothesis, the $840,000 must be deducted rence to instalments, or the arrival or departure of from the $6,179,395 of unconditional acceptances trains, and without regard to money which was made and registered in the War Department. This due, or which was expected to become due. would leave of them, so far as is shown by the rec-One would naturally expect to find that Governor ords of that Department, $5,339,395 still in circula- Floyd, having been admonished by one whose potion. Add to this amount the $798,000 of conditional sition and legal learning gave authority to his advice, acceptances received by Mr. Bailey in lieu of the having confessed the illegality of his proceedings bonds, and the aggregate is $6,137,395. Here, then, and expressed a determination to make no further conforming the statement to the records of the War acceptances, would have proceeded thereafter with Department, is a deficit of $6,137,395 to fall upon the great caution and circumspection, even if he did not holders of these acceptances, or to be assumed in entirely discontinue his previous policy. It appears, some way by the Government.
however, that, supposing the note to Mr. Benjamin, “The evidence shows that the acceptances have before referred to, to have been written a year ago, been sold in various parts of the United States, there have been issued by Governor Floyd, since Wherever a bank or private individual could be in that time, acceptances to the amount of $2,163,000; duced to purchase. Inasmuch, however, as the in April, $40,000; May, $250,000 ; June, $350,000; amount of those that have been traced directly into July, $95,000 ; August, $235,000; September, the hands of present holders constitutes but a small $125,000; October, $270,000. To this amount must fraction of the sum still unaccounted for, and as be added the $798,000 of unconditional acceptances owners are daily filing additional claims at the War of which there is no registry, and the grand total Department, it is deemed annecessary to give a de- is as above stated. Having had his error and its tailed statement of the discovered acceptances, or probable consequences distinctly pointed out, and to make other mention of them, than to refer to the having expressed his intention to refrain in future papers relating thereto, presented by the War De- from the commission of similar acts, he still persists partment, and to the general evidence."
in his former course, and actually issued an accept
ance for $155,000 at a date so late as the 13th of DeMr. Floyd urged, in his defence, (see page cember, 1860. Whether this manifest contempt of 152,) that it had been the custom of the de- counsel, disobedience of law, and violation of a partment to issue acceptances for work to be solemn promise can be reconciled with purity of performed on contract; but this proved to be private motives and faithfulness to public trusts, is worse than falsification. It had not only not for the House to determine. It is the opinion of been customary to do so, but, after the Presi- your Committee that they cannot." dent was made aware of Mr. Floyd's “custom," This report, adding certainty to rumor, and in alarm had positively forbidden it, the placed the ex-Secretary in a position of unSecretary continued the practice. Mr. Ben- enviable not ety before his countrymen. jamin, of Louisiana, had been written to by Having been indicted (January 28th) on two
counts, by the Grand Jury | the courage to "attend to his interests” before Floyd's Disgrace. of Washington City: first, that Committee. As the chief witnesses er
for malfeasance in office; amined were Mr. Benjamin, Mr. Russell, and and, second, for conspiracy with others to Mr. Bailey-all his friends—the assumption defraud the Government-he found it con- that the hearing was ex parte, and therefore cenient to absent himself, and take refuge in unreliable, was simply refreshing for its cool Virginia; under the plea of “attending to her assurance. The testimony withheld by the interests." Having robbed the Government two witnesses last named was, unquestionof millions--having contributed to arm the ably, of a more criminal character than what revolutionists and to humiliate the Adminis- they divulged; but, the facts elicited were as tration, he was well qualified to assume a given in the report, and were not controvertleading part in a drama based upon perjury ed. The “full response" promised by the and deception. Benedict Arnold received absconded principal was given to the world, the gold of the British Government for his a few weeks later, in the columns of a Rich* services,” but nó honorable Englishman ever mond paper; but, though it asseverated, arwould allow the contaminating touch of his gued, vilified, and invoked the ear of the traitor's hand :-if Mr. Floyd was welcomed just, it failed to wipe away the stain which by the conspirators, in his escape from the rested as irrevocably upon his name as the hand of the Government he had betrayed, the moth on door of a tomb. people of Virginia put him away from their The state of the country
State of the Country, hearts, as unworthy of an honorable man's at the date of February
February 15th. respect. The price of his treason was the 15th was one of comparaoverwhelming contempt of his own fellow- tive peace. Excitement consequent on the citizens.
several acts of secession had given place to Mr. Floyd wrote from his retirement a pro- cared to confess
. The dim perspective had
a feeling of anxiety for the future, which few test to the report of the Special Committee, no clear light to lure the mind on to pleasant saying :
“ The numerous assaults depths beyond. Ghosts of a buried greatFloyd's Protest. which have been made upon ness seemed to flit in the gloom gathering
my character for several weeks around. Voices of the illustrious dead seem past in the newspapers, and which from their source ed to breathe upon the very air of the room and nature could not be replied to, have at length where men brooded over the destruction which culminated in a report from the Committee of the threatened the Republic. Shadows formed, House of Representatives, submitted to that body and melted but to form again, making pictures on the 12th inst. The report is an ex parte arraign, which made the soul sick-pictures of men ment of my official conduct upon ex parte testimony, in deadly conflict, of burning houses, of suftaken in secret in my absence. It is a labored attempt by innuendo, and by means and circumstances
fering women and beggared children, of a in the absence of proof, to fix upon me some unex- capital sacked and ruined, and a land in despected complicity with a robbery of the Government
olation. These were the visitants to the of which I had no knowledge until about the time it fireside of every thoughtful citizen; and if waw publicly disclosed ; and now that these charges there still was a struggle for compromise, it have been put in form, and have emanated from an was to appease treason in order to avert the authoritative source, I pledge myself to meet them greater terrors of a state of civil war. But, by full response as soon as the report of this Com- as men suffer and grow strong, so the quiet mittee, with the evidence taken by it, has been of February was silently preparing the souls printed, and can be examined.
of those made to lead for the great emergen“JOHN B. FLOYD.
cies to come. Out of that ordeal of internal “ February 13th, 1861."
personal struggle came the hearts of fire and The fact of its being ex parte was entirely nerves of steel, which were to save the Reowing to the primary fact that Mr. Floyd ab- public when the trumpet called her sons to sented himself, and found no friend who had her defence.
PROCEEDINGS OF CONGRESS CONTINUED. ELE VENTI WEEK.
VIRGINIA SHOWS HER COLORS. INTERESTING RESOLUTIONS. SPEECHES OF FESSENDEN, MASON, KING, CAMPBELL, VANDEVER, DE
JARNETTE, AND OTHERS. THE SEVEN SLOOPS OF WAR. REPUBLICAN DECLARATION ON SLAVERY IN THE STATES.
The Eleventh week of the Thirty-sixth | Government could only ob
Seven Steam-Sloops Session of Congress (February 11th-16th) tain money at large dis
provided for. scarcely sustained the interest excited by the counts, the proposition was previous week's proceedings. The brilliant inopportune and unwise. What, to him, seemspeeches of that week rendered it one of the ed suspicious was the fact that the vessels promost memorable of the session. The week posed were of the class required to enter which followed was distinguished by only Southern watersports of the Seceded States. one or two speeches of note. Virginia “showed He was not willing to vote one dollar for any her colors” most unmistakably, and, for that addition to the navy which looked to the reason, if for no other, the Eleventh week will coercion of any State that had seceded. be remembered.
Mr. Fessenden, (Rep.,) of Maine, reminded In the Senate, Monday, (February 11th) Mr. Hunter that precisely the same class of a great number of petitions were presented vessels, and the same number, had been reeby Messrs. Crittenden and Bigler, for the pas-ommended by the Committee at the previous sage of compromise resolutions. Senator session, and that Mallory, of Florida, was Wade also presented four numerously signed Chairman of that committec. Hunter replied » petitions, from citizens of Philadelphia, ask- that they were recommended by Mr. Mallory ing Congress to stand firm by the Union, the because they were of the character and kind Constitution as it is, and the enforcement of required for Southern ports—but, now that the laws.
all these States had seceded, for whose beneThe Naval Appropriation fit they were especially designed, there was Seven Steam-Sloops
bill being called, Mr. Hale, no propriety in the project being brought provided for.
(Rep.,) of New Hampshire, forward again withoạt there was a design to submitted several amendments—one of which use the vessels against those very States. embraced the building of seven steam sloops Mr. Grimes, (Rep.,) of Iowa, remarked upon of-war. This called up Hunter, (Dem.,) of the absolute requirements of the navy--that Virginia, who “ wished to know the amount no country was any longer building sailing proposed to be appropriated, and the reasons vessels for naval use—that the cost of the for it; and why, at this time, it is proposed proposed sloops was only about $300,000 each to make this large addition to the Navy?” —that Great Britain had two hundred and Mr. Hale answered that it was a matter seventy-four of the same class of vessels-that recommended by the Navy Department, and the economy of manning and keeping in serhad been urged upon Congress for years. vice of such vessels was so great over that The idea of another sailing vessel being add- required by heavier craft, as to make the ed to the navy was an absurdity. The navy building a matter of actual economy to the thenceforth was to be à steam navy. Mr. Treasury. Upon that ground alone had the Hale then read the recommendations of the measure been brought forward. No "coer Secretary of the Navy on the subject. cion” was proposed by their construction.
Mr. Hunter answered, that, in the then After further discussion, which was partiembarrassed state of the Treasury, when the cipated in by Messrs. Hunter, Grimes, Pearce,
and Polk, the amendment was adopted—30 terests of the Government. And to 18.
if I can no longer do that, I will Fessenden's Defence. When the bill was re- leave my place here and return Mason's Speech in
ported to the Senate, on to my State, and say I am at its service. Now, sir, Opposition.
its passage, a discussion how do we stand as Senators—we who remain, followed of an interesting character. Mason, whose States have not seceded? We look on these (Dem.,) of Virginia, spoke against the special facts, remarkable as they are, as taking place outside amendment proposed. He referred to the
of this Chamber, and we are not bound to deal with
them as negotiations. We are to look on them as depressed state of the Treasury, remarking
against the interest, the welfare of the Government that Government was in an actual state of and the Constitution of the United States, under destitution. For what, then, were these ad- which we live. That is the point of view from which ditional expenses to be incurred at that par- we must look at them. But men seem to say to ticular moment ? He could not shut his themselves and the country, 'I, standing here as a eyes to the fact that seven States had seced- member of this Government, must look out and ed; six of them had joined, formed a Gov- keep my eyes open, not that this Government has ernment and a nationality, and by no vote of the advantage of my counsels, but that those outhis should there be any additions to the mil- side, who are waging war against it, are to have the itary force of the Government, which was to benefit of my counsels and my aid.' Why, sir, be used to coerce those States.
taken in.consideration and in connection with this Mr. Fessenden answered
question, this bill of my friend from Vermont (Mr.
Collamer) is simply a bill to provide that, if the Fessenden's Defence. for the Committee. He
revenue of the Government cannot be collected in a said it was time that Sen
particular place, or a particular point, then these ators should understand precisely what the places shall cease to be recognized as places where condition of the country was, and who was
the revenue shall be legally collected. Yet this is responsible for it. It was a singular address, commented on as a design of coercion. Do we not coming from that quarter, to appeal to the owe it to the foreign Governments themselves, that Republican side to know what was the ob- we should either enforce our own laws in these ject of the proposition! Who had been in ports, or else declare them not to be legal ports of power for years? The proposition to build entry for the United States ?" the steamers had come from a Democratic Mr. Mason replied, “ Clearly sol” and added President, and a Democratic Committee of a that, if the Committee could avow that reaDemocratic Senate, year after year. Why son in the bill, that the State of South Cardid the gentleman question the Republicans olina is no longer a member of the Confedabout it? What change has transpired, Mr. eracy, and is beyond the jurisdiction of the Fessenden wished to know, that rendered the Government—let them avow it ! measure less requisite now than heretofore ? Mr. Fessenden asked what difference there The only reason offered by the Virginia Sen- was, as a point of law, whether or not the ator was, that six States bad seceded, had motive was avowed. It was not necessary seized property, had assailed the Govern- that the motive should stand declared. He ment! Mr. Fessenden continued :
resumed: “ It is almost impossible to refrain from asking, “We simply declare that there may be cases in Who does the Senator represent here? Is he a Sen- which it may be difficult for the United States to ator of the United States here on this floor, and does collect revenue in particular places, by the ordinary he stand up here and say, after all these things course of proceedings, and we give the President the have taken place, that they render it unnecessary power to say that we shall no longer attempt to now to increase the naval force of the country! I collect the revenue, for it shall cease to be a port recognize the fact, as was said by the Senator from where vessels may legally enter, under the authority Mississippi, (Mr. Davis,) that, so long as I am here, of the United States; when we declare that it is no I am bound to perform my duty as a Senator of the longer a port of the United States, a port of entry, United States, without any reference to what may and give notice of the fact, then comes & time be done outside of this Chamber. So long as I stay when, if foreign vessels undertake to consider it a here, and receive the money of the Government, I port of the United States, they will become amenawill look out, to the best of my ability, for the in- ble to the laws, and must take the consequences. It