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Tuesday. Dec. 3d. 1833.
At an adjourned Heeting of the Board of Din;ctors held thil evening.
Present, N. Biddle. President,
Messn. Willing.


Mr. Cbauncey, from tbe special committee appointed on the 24th September,
presented tbe following Report, wbicb was read.
Wbereupon, Mr. Chauncey moved the following Re80lution,Resolved, Tbat the said Report with the accompanying Resolution be


Upon this motion tbe Yeas and Nays were called for, when it was carried by
a vote of 12 to 3 as follows:
Yeas-Messrs. Willing, Eyre, Bevan, White, Sergeant, Fisher, Lippincott,
Chauncey, Newkirk, Lewis, Holmes, Biddle; 12.
Nays-Messrs. Gilpin, Sullivan, Wager; 3.
On motion it \Vas Resolved, that 5000 copies of the said Report be printed
for tbe use of the Stockholders of the Bank.
Extract from the minutes,
. S. JAUDON, Cashier.

THE Committee to whom was referred on the 24th of September,
a paper signed" Andrew Jackson," purporting to have been read
to a Cabinet on the 18th, and also another paper signed" H. D. Gilpin, John T. Sullivan, Peter Wager. and Hugh M'Elderry," bearing
(late August 19th; 18SS-with instructions to consider the same,
and report to the Board "whether any, and what s€eps may be necessary on the part of the Board in consequence of the publication
of said letter and report," beg leave to state. That they have carefully examined these papers, and will now
proceed to report the result of their reBections in regard to them.
In order, however, to render them more intelligible, it will be
proper to recal to the attention of the Board, the actual relation
which the Bank has for lome years past borne to the Executive.
Since the establishment of the Institution it has devoted itself
anxiously and exclusively to the purposes of its creation, the restoration of the currency, the maintenance of the general credit, and the
accommodation of the internal and foreign trade of the country. "
That it has not failed in these objects-iliat it has indeed realized
more than the anticipations of the most sanguine, is attested by all
parts of the commuDlty. It was in the midst of this career of 100ffensive usefulness,. when soon after the accession to poweP of the present Executive. the purpose was distinctly revealed that other duties
tban those to the countl·y were required-and that it was necessary
for the Bank in administering its aifairs, to consult the political
views of those who had now obhlined the ascendancy in the Executive. Itis unders.tood that soon after that event a meeting was held
in Washington of ·the. principal chiefs, to consider the means of perpetuating their new authority, and the possession of the Bank was
among tlie most prominent objects of the parties assembled. The
first open manifestation of this purpose was in June, 1829, when a
concerted eifort was made by the executive officers to interfere in
the election of the Board of Directors at Portsmouth. At the head
of this ~ttempt was Mr. Levi Woodbury. now a member of the present Cabinet at Washinp;ton, who did. not hesitate to aVl)W in a letter
to theSeeretary of the 'treasury, whIch, though marked "confidential," was subsequently ordered .to be published by the Committee
of investigation in ] 8S2-that he wished the intertlrence of tbe
Government to remove the President of the Branch at Portsmouth,
of whom he say-s:" The new President Jeremiah ~[ason, is a particular -'riend 0/
Mr. Webster, and his political character i8 doubtle" roeU kno.wn to
you "-and he reque!lts the Secretary of the Treasury "to commurnumcate with some of the Director. Of the Mother BaRk injavour of
lI,!ch tJ change.

This Jetter of MI'. Woodbury was transmitted to the Bank by the
Secretary of the Treasury, who stated that" from some expressIons
in his letter, it may be inferred that it is partly founded on a sup·
posed ap~lication of the influence of the Bank, with a view to politi.
cal eft"ect '-in consequence of which he deemed it his duty to pre'.ent it to the Bank, "with the viewl of the adminilltration in relation to it." At the same time, Mr. Isaac .Hill, acting as the Comptroller of the Treasury until rejected by the Senate, and now a Senator of the United States, sent a. memorial from the members of his
political PlLrtJ" in the Legislature of New HamJ?ll"i~e, requesting the
removal of Mr. Mason. In another commumcabon presente(i to
the Bank, he gave it as his opinion, that JlO measure short of Mr.
Mason's removal would tend" to reconcile the people 0[ New Hamp.hire to the Bank," and that the "friends of Gen. Jackson, in New
Hampshire, have had but too much reason to complain of the management of the lJranch at Portsmouth." Finally, tlie Secretary at War
ordered the transfer of the pension fund from the Braneli Bank at
Portsmouth to another Bank io Concord, an act so obviously in violation of the laws, that it wall first resisted by the Bank, and then
retracted by the Secretary.
It became then manifest to the Bank, that there was a combined
.Wort to render the IustitQtion subservient to political purposes;
and that it was necessary to come to some immmediate· and distinct understanding of its rights and duties. This was done ill the
correspondence of the President of the Bank with the Secretary of
the Treasuq-, of which the following passages will indicate the general purport:
, . .
"Presuming that we have rightly apprehended your views, and
fearful that the silence of the Bank might be hereafter misconstrued
into aR acquiescence in them, I deem it my duty togtate to YO\l in a
manner perfectly respectful to your official and persoQal character,
yet so dear as to leave no possibility of misconception, that the
Boar4 of Director. of the Bank of the United States, and. the Boards
of Dir~tol's ofthe Branches of the Bank of the United States, acknowteilge flot the lIlighte6t responsibility r/ any dellcription whatlloetJtr
to the Secretary oftke TreaaUJ'Y touching tll8 political conduct ojtheir
o,Qicer" that being a lIubject on which they never Co.nllult, and never de"re to kno'D the viewl of any admini8trat·ioll. "
Again :-" Accordingly the Act of Congress simply declares, 'that
for the management of the atTairs of the said Corporation, there shall
• lae twenty-five Directors.' When these are chosen, the whole administration of the Bank is committed to their exclusive care. Tlr.eir
r.onBibilityfor the management of it ill to Congre,'1, and. to CDn·
grellll alone: but no EzecUlive OJlicer of the Government, from the
Pruident 9/.the United Stute, downwardll, hall thellligMellt authority
to interfere ill it; ancl t"ere can be n8 more warranlf:Qrllugge,ting the
'View, ofthe at/ministration to tke Bank of the linited /:ltatell thim. to
the·Supreme Caurtofthe United States."
Finally:-" For tIle llank. wllich "as specific dutiell to perjorm, and
wMch belongs to t~c cmmtry and not to any party. there ill but one

couru oj honour or of 'aJBly. Whme"er it, dulie, come in conflict
with the spirit oj party, it ,kould not compromiae with it, nor capitulate to it, but rerial it-re,i,' it openly and jearle,aly. In thi, itB intereBl ClmeUr, with itB dutytfor it unlI befound at laBl, lUck iB tke /{ootl
.ense of the country, tkat 'lie beat mode oj ,atiafying all partie, II to
diBregard them alL" ,
These extracts reveal the whole secret of the hostility to the
Bank of tho8e, who, finding it impo88ible to bend it to their purposes,
have resolved to break it. For thi8 purp08e, all the poi80ned weapons of political warfare have, for the last foul' years, been unsparingly and unceasiD~ly employed again8t the In8titution. Thu8 far
theIr ~lforts have faded-they have ~n defeated befo~e Co'.'r88,
and dIscountenanced by the cODimumty. .But now, belD, relieved
from the pre8ence of Congre88, and ·the legal guardian '0"\'18 public
revenue bein~ removed, tney have ventured on this last act of vio.
To justify thi8 measure i8 the purpose of the paper 8igned, c. Andrew Jack80n." Of the J>Ilper it8elf, and of the individual who has
8igned it, the Committee find it difficult to 8peak with the plainness
by which alone 8uch a tlocument, from sU,ch a 8Ource, should be
described, without wounding their own self-respect, and violating
the consideration which all American citizens must feel for the chief
m~ltracy of·their country. Subduing, however, their feelings and
their lan~ down to that relpectful tone which is due to the office-they will proceed to examine the history of this measure, its
character and the pretexts olfered in palliation of it. Of these in their
order1st: It would appear from its contents and from other 80urces of
information, that tile President had a meeting of what is called the
Cabinet, on Wednesday the 18th Sept., anef there read this paper.
Finding that,it made nC) impre8sion on the majority of persons assemblea, the subject was po8tponed, and in the mean time this
document was- put into the new8papers. It was obviously published for two rea80ns. The fir8t was to influence the members
of the Cabinet by bringing to bear upon their immediate decision the first public impre8sion excited by misrepre8entations,
which the object8 of them could not refute in tIme-the 8econd was,
by the 8ame excitempnt, to alfect the apf.roaching elections in Pennsylvania, Maryland, and New Jersey. rhe first design is apparent
from the fate whiclt has befallen these counsellors. Whilst 80mething was hoped from their fears, it was expedient to flatter them,
keeping in reserve behind these blandishment8, the power to punish
disobedience. " By the terms of the Charter," the Pre!lident says,
" the public money is to be deposited in the Bank during the continuance 9f its Charter, unles8 the Secretary oJ Ihe Trea,ury 8hall
otherwise direct." "Unless, therefore, the Secretary of the TreaBUry first aclB, Congres8 have no power over the 8ubject, and conse'luentl, the public money must remain in that in8titution till the-Jast"
bour of its existence, unless the Secretary of the TrtaBtlrg shall remove it at an earlier day;" and apin, "the power of the Secretary
oj the TreaBury over the deposits IS unqualified."

Having thus argued the Secretary of tlie Treasury into an exclusive control of the deposits, the President proceeds to give his reaSOftS why the Secretary should remove them, concluding with this.
remark-u.Ear be it from him to expect or require tfUJI any member
of the Cabinet shoulil at his requut, order, or dictJllioll,pei/orm any
act which he believes unlawful, or in his consc~ence condemm." Yet
notwithstanding these expressions of humility, the moment the Secretary of the Treasury dares to resist this intrusion into his Department, and refuses to ao what" his conscience condemns," he is immediately dismissed from his office, aDd denounced in the official Gazette as a "refractory subordinate." The same official announces
to the other two oifendinf, ministers, "that however he may regret
the diiference of opinion, ' the President still thinks ,. that the mea" sure is one upon which the members may conscientiously dilfer
" from the President and from each other;" that is to say, that the}'
are not yet to be dismissed for expressing their opinions, the President bein~ appeased. by the sacrifice of the most contumacious of
the oppOSItion.
Its purpose to influence the election. is attested by the triumphant
exultation of the Official Gazette, that., We have received intelligence which authorizes the belief. that.
~'in the late election in Pennsylvania, the Leg!slature <if that State
" has undergone a change which will give tbe Jackson party a majo" rity of two-thirds, ana the same result has been accomplished in
"Maryland. We learn from sources to be relied on, that the suc" cess of the Jackson ticket in some of the Anti-Jackson counties
" i!l Maryland, was secured by the l~te eXP.osi?ODS o.f the corrup" tion" of the Bank, read by the PresIdent to hili Cabmet-and we
" have no doubt that it had its elfect on all the recent elections."
ide The indelicacy of the fOfm of these proceedings correlponds
well with the substance of them, which is equally in violation of the
rights of the Bank and the laws of the country.
The Bank of the United: States was chartered by Congress for
certain national purposes; and as it was thought expedient to obtain
the s~i.ll and vigilance of priyat~ interest i!\ man~ng ~he institution,
, the cItizens generally were lDvlted to uOlte their prIvate fortunes
with the public capital. The,. did 10, and the charter of the Bank
is in fact an .act of partnership between the' Government and the
Stockholders, specifying the rights and duties of each party. In the
charter of the first Banlt of the United States, there was on the part
of the Bank no payment of a bonus-no obligation to transfer the
public funds-no performance of the duties of the Loan Officewhile on the part of the governmcnUhere was no stipulat.ion to give
, the use of the deposits. This defeet was supplied in the charter of
the present Bank by positive agreement. Thus the Bank, in addi• tion to its arduous duty of restoring and sustaining the general currency. agreed by the 15th section, ., to give the pecessary facilities
" fot transferring the pUblic funds from place to place within the
'J United States or the territories thereof, and for distributing the
. II same in payment of the public creditors, without charging commil-


sion, or claiming allowance on account of difference of exchange J .
and shall al80 do and perform the several and respective duties of
the Commissioners of Loans for the several states, or of auy one
or more of them. whenever required by law."
And again. the 20tb secticlD declarea-" That in consideration of
" the exclusive privileges and benefits conferred by this act upon the
" said Bank, the Presi(ient, Directors~ and Company thereof, shall
" pay to the United States out of the corporate funds thereof; the sum
" of one million and five hundred thousand dollars."
" Such was the consideration to· be given by the Bank. The consideration to ~ given. by th~ Government, was "that the deposits of
" the money of the U. States in places in which the said Bank· and
" Branches thereof may be established, shall be made in skid Bank
" or Branches thereof, unless the Secretary of the Treuury shall
" otherwfse order and diret:tJ in which case the Secretary of the Trea" sury shall immediately lay before Congre88, if in session, and if
" not, immediately' after the commencement of the session. the rea" sons of such order and direction."
This contract was deemed so unfavourable to the citizens generally, that on the opening of the books, the subscription was not filled,
from a belief that the investment upon such terms could not be advantqeous-an anticipation too well realized by the fact that the
stocknolders have never yet received the legal rate of interelt on the
princi~l subscribed. But the only temptation by which they could be
mduced to unite with the' Government was, that while on the one hand
they paid in advance to the Government a million and a half of dol':
lars, and performed certain stip-ulated duties, they should have the
benefit of the deposit ofpublicJunds until they were wanted in the
public disbursements. These were the two essential stipulationsnay, they were in fact alwost the only ones. This was the opinion
of the Committee of Finance of the Senate, when on a proposition to
mak~ the Bank pay for the ulle of the De,POsits, they reported 01\ the
21st of April, 1828, that "the 16th sectlon directs thatthe de~sits
of the mone! of the United States shall be made in the Bank and its
branches. No change can be made therein without a direct violation
of the charter, ",!&ich the faith of the nation i, bound to ,ultain. No
view of that Tdnd could be contemplated b!J any per,on, and "one, it i.
pre,umed, hal been contemplated"-and they further declare their
opinion. that in the bonus and the services rendered by the Bank,
.. the United State, have bun amply paid for all the advantage, derived from the deporit. of their fund. in the Bank. and it, branches."
The same views are expressed ID another report of the Committee of
Finance of the Senate on the 20th of February, 1829. "The Com,
"mittee repeat their opinion that the charter gives to the Bank the
"use of the public deposits without any other remuneration.than .
" such as are distinctly authorised in that instrument-that the eK" action of any other w~uld. in the opinion of the Committee, be a d~" rect violation of the charter. The 16th section says distinatly,
" that the deposits of the money of the United States' shall be made
it. in the Bank of the United States and its Branches.'
This is posio:'


" tive and cannot b.t misunderstood. The iOth section iays 'that in
" consideration ofibe exclusive privileges and benefit' conferred by
" this aet upon the said Bank, the President, Directors, and Com"pany thereof, shalt pay to the United States 11,500.000.' . The
., Bank was to pay and has paid the million and a half of dollars.
" For wbat-? For the exclusive privileges and benefits conferred by
" this ad. What are the benefit" The Committee can perceive
-, none t:tcept the dtp08it, for wAich the Bank 11(1,' actually paid al-

"ready." .


The President him~lf, ill his manifesto, is obliged to allow that"
"the charter to the Bank is to be considered as a c9Dtract on the
"part oCthe Government~it is not now in tbe power of Congress to
"ais~rd its stipulations-and by the terms of that contract the
"public money is to be depoeited in the Bank during the continu"anee of it. charter, unless the Secretary of tbe Tr~asury .hall
"otherwise direct.
It is then admitted on all hands that this is a contract b1 which
the Bank was to pay a sum of money, and to perform certain senices, as a consideration for the use of the Government deposits, which
the Govet'nment stipulated should remain in the Bank, unless. otherwise directed by a ~rtieular oBiter, the Sec~ of the Treasury.
The purpose of givmg this power was obviously to prevent any loss
of the revenue, and it was designed exclusively to enable the Secretary to protect the iftterests of the Government if the Bank became
unsafe. This was the opinion of the Secretary of the Treasury, Mr.
Crawford, who, in one of his very first the Bank,
in March 17, 1817, declared" that, by the charter, the public money deposited in places wbere the ·Bank of the United States, or ita
Branches, are established, mull be dqlorited in them, except tehm
there are urgent re/U01U to the cor&tril:ry. ", This wa~ also the opinion
pronounced DY the Committee of Finance of the Senate, in their report of the iOth of February, 1829. After citing the 16th section,
they 8a1:" rhe Committee see, in tbe power given to the Secretary, a dis" creet precaution, and the words they-believe convey only the idea,
" that If, at any time, the Secretary shan be of opml0n that there
" will be a danger of 108S to the United States. by its money remain" ing in the vaults of the Bank. he may remove it for safety, and re" port his rea80ns to Congress. No otber construction can, in the
" opinion of the Committee, be given to that part or the 16th section."
This too was the opinion expressed by the President himself in his
Message to Con~ress on the fourth of December, 1832, in which he
recommends an mquiry, in order to aUay "the apprehension that it
is no longer a ,ale depository of the money of the people;" and in
. the Ame Message he adds:
" Sach measures as are within the reach of the Secretary of the
Treasury, have been taken to enable' him to judge whttler thepubUc
deporit' in lhat in,titution may be regarded as entirely lOfe J but as
'.his limited power may prove inadequate to this object, I recommend

,Ae lubjed to the attention oj CongrilJlJ, u~6f' tht firm belly tMt it
ilJ 1D0rthy

of lJeriotu inoutigation."

And the Secretary of the Treasury in his report to the same Congress, in 18SSl, mentioni cet'tain things which "have suggested an
lDquirv into the lJuurity of the Battk as the depository oC-the public


The subject of the safety of the deposita was thus an object of inquiry by the Secretary of the Treasury, and by Congress-and what
was the resula The Agent of the Treasury, after a full investigation, reported as follows:
"Thus far I consider my report as complying with that part of
your letter directing the investigation 'so as to ascertain the lJuurity
o.fthe public mo""1/. and the IJOlfJency of the Bank,' neither of which
in my opinion, admit of a doubt."
The House of ReJ)resentatives, after an investigation by the Committee of W!IoYs and Means, resolved by a vote of more than twothirds.
" That the Government depoBitlJ m(~,-, in the opinion of the HOUle

be Bcifety continued in the Btink of the United BtalelJ."
From these it is apparent that, in the opinion of the President,
the Secretary of the Treasury, and the Committee of Finance, the
question of removing the deposits was a question merely of their
That· t~e Government, through its proper channels. inquired into
th~ir safety:
And that through all these channels their sarety was made- manifest, and so declared by the highest authority.
But supposing this to be less evident tlian it is.....-&upposing that
causes other than the safety o~ the pu~lic funds w~uld JUltify their
removal from the Bank after It has paid a full rqulvalent for them,
still one thing ill manifest:
That the Secretar.v of the TrealJury. and the Secr,tarJJ of the Treaaur" alone. hatJ the power to remove them-that qfficer being Bpecially
designated to perform tMt IJpeciflc duty-and the PrelJident of tlU
United State, benag. by the clearest impiicatiotl,forbidden to interfere.
The whole structure of the Treasury shows, that the design of
Congress was to make the Secretary all independent as possible of
the President. The other Secretaries are merely executive officers;
but the Secretary of the Treasury, the guardian of the public revenue, comell into more immediate sympatlly with the representatives
of the people who pay that revenue; and although accordin~ to the
general sclieme of a{»pointment he is nominated by the Presli:lent to
the Senate, yet he IS in fact the officer of Congress, not the officer
of the President. Thus:
Bv the aet of CongreslI, of 1789, it was provided, that
" There shan be an E:euutioe Department. to ~ denominated the
Department of War; and there shall be a principal officer therein to
be called the Secretary for the Department of War, who IJhU perform'

Digitized by


mad ~zecute aueA dutiell (JII JuJI from n.e to lime be et;oit&ed em, iw
entruBted to, him by the Prerident cifthe Unitell Statu."
By the same act it was provided, that
" There shall be an &ecutive Department, to be denominated the
Department of Foreign Affairs, [afterwards changed by the act of
.September 15,.1789, to the Department of State] !cith 11&e lIamll IW"Virionll (JII to the principal officer."
By the act of 50th Of April, 1798, it was declared, that
"There shall. be an Ezecutive Department, \lnder the denomination of the Department of the Navy, the chief officer of which shall
be called the Secretary of the Navy, whose duty it shall he to il:UMe mch orderll (JII he IIhall receive fnm& the Prerident of the Unit~d

The bill introduced into the Congrell8 of 1789, provided for the
establishment of the three Departments-thoae of War, State and
1.'reasury-under the name of Ezecutive Departments. But Congress made a distinction between theln. On the 2d of July. 1789, as
the Journals of Congress show, " An engrossed bill 'for establishing'
an Executive Depa.rtment, to be denominated the Treasury Depo.rt~ent,' was read the third time, and the blanks therein tilled up.
"Resolved, That the said bill do'ru' and the title be an Act to

utabliBh the TrelUUry Depa.rtment.'


The same distinction pervades the whole organization of the several Departments. The Secretary of the Navy, of State, and of War,
are to execute the orders of the President-but the Secretary of the
.Treasury is not enjoined to execute the orders of the President.
Not a single word IS there of performing the orders of the President.
On the contrary, the act of COngress (Jeclares, that it shall be his
duty "to make report and ~ve information to either Branch of the
LegilliQIure,in peraOfl. or an writing, Cas he may be required) respecting all matters referred to him by thE: Senate or House of Representatives, Or which shan appertain to his office." And the act of .
May 10th. 1800, directs hlm to make his annual report, not to the
President, but to Congress.
This independence of the Secretar, of the Treasury-if it be true
in general-is more especially true.lD regard to the Bank. It wu
jn fact the leading principle in organizing the Bank, that the President should be excluded from all control of it. The question which
most divided the House of Representatives was whether there should
be any Government Directors at all-and althou~h this was finally
adopted, yet its tendency to creat~ an executive mftuence over the
Bank was qualified bv two restrictions-tirst, that no mOl'e than
three Directors should be appointed from anyone State-and second,
that the President of the Bank should not be, as was originally designed by the Secretarv of the Treasury, chosen from among the Government Directors. Accordingly, by the charter, the Secreta~ of
the Treasury is every thing-the President comparatively nothmg.
The Secretary hal the excfusive supervision of all the relations. of
the Bank with the Government. Thus:
. By the 15th articl~ of the 11th section, the 'Officer at the head of
the Treasury Department of the United States, .shall be furnished from

time to time, as oCten as he may require, not exceeding once a week,
with statements of the. amount of the capital stock, &c. &C.
By the 15th aectiOll, .. Whenever. required by the Secretary of the
'!'reasury., the said ~rporatiy. shall give the neceuary facilitiel for
transferrmg the pubbc funds, &C. &C.
By the 16th sectidn, the deposits of the money of the United Statel
shall be made in the Bank and its Branches, .. unless the Secretary of
the Treasury shall at any time otherwise order and direct."
All these the Secretary may do-but from the beginning of the
charter to the end of it, there is not one single power over the admi:'
nlstration of the Bank assigned to the President, except in the last
aecHon, where it is declared that, "whenever any COmmittee of Con. gress shall find and report, or the President of the Uaited Statea eIaall
ka1te muon to bel-. that .tM ,eluJrter 1uu been molo.ted; it may be
lawful for Congress to direct, or the Preeident to order, a ,ci,.eJacia
to be sued out of the Circuit Colirt for the District of Pennsylvaaia.,
calling upon the Corporation to' show cause wherefore the charter
hereby granted shall not be declll.1'ed forfeited." The whole functiOil
then delegated to the President isa power, concurrently with a Committee of Congress, to issue a scire facias, by which the Court is to
try whether his btolieC that the Bank has violated its charter is well
founded. Yet this slender authority is made the pretext for usurping
the whole power of the Secretary, and for doing that which the Secretary alone was authorized to do, and which be tbe President was not
merely not au~horized to do, but substantially prohibited from doing.
For it iS,manifest tbat this removal of the deposits is not made by
the order of tbe Secretary of the Treasury. It is a perversion oflanauage so to describe it. On tbe contrary., the reverse is openly avowed. The Secretary of the Treasury refused to remove them, believing, as his published letter declares,tbat tbe removal was "unnecessary, unwise, trindidi'De, arbitrary and unjust." He wu
then dismissed because be would not remove tbem, .and ano·
ther was appointed because he would remove them. Now thil
i. a palpable violation of the charter. Tho Bank and Congress agree
upon certain terms, wbicb no one can change but a palticlllar officer;
who, although necessarily nominated to the Senate by the President,
was designated by the Bank Rnd Congress as the umpire between
them. Both Congress and the Bank have a right to tbe free, and honeat, and impartial judgment of that Officer, whoever he may be-the
Bank, because the remonl may injure its interests-the Congress,
because tbe removal may greatly inc0mmode and distress their constituents. In this cas~ they are deprived of it by the unlawful inter.
ference of the President, wbo "assumes the responsibility." which, .
being interpreted, means, usurps the power of the Secretary. To
make this usurpation more evident, bis own language contradicts the
very power, which be asserts:
" The po\fer tiftAe Secreta,." says he, over the deposita, is unqua.

" lijied."
"The President cannot refrain from pressing upon the Sec,.eta,.,


"I1&e ~ hi. view of tho consideration. wbich impel to imnae.
"diate action."
ADd yet these phrues have scarcely escaped him, ",hen he ends by
dedaring that he" begs his cabinet to consider the proposed measure
"a Au oum." "I,. relPD1Uiflility U auurMd," &c. &c.
Finally, it was announced in the Official Gazette, that" We 1motD
t1&efact, that if Mr. Van Buren and every personal friend of the Prelident, had united in recommending that the deposits should not be
removed, t1&e Pruident .,ould haN 1C11ren mefUIII'A to retJlODe tAem
The Bank then, has a right to complain:
1st. That after paying amply for the use of the deposits, they have
been suddenly drawn from it.
2d. That this has been done without the ~lightest suspicion of thei.r .
insecurity, tbe only ground on which the removal could be justifiable


Sd. That it has been done, not hy the officer to whose judgment it
had agreed to submit, but by another officer who had not the .lightest
right to interfere.
But the wrong done to the pecuniary interests of the Bank, sinb
into entire insignificance when compal'ed with tbe deeper injury inflicted on the country by thi. usurpation of all the powera of the Government.
By the ar.t of Congress chartering tbe Bank, certain specified
powers in regard to it are delegated to particular officers.
By the 16th section, and by the 15th rule of the 11th section, tbe
Secretary of the Treasury has a constant supervision of its atrairs,
and the power of placing the public revenue elsewhere, subject to an
·immediate and direct responsibility to Congress.
By the 22d section, Congress itself has the power of investigation, to
ascertain if there be sufficient ground to justify an appeal to the courts
of the United States, to try if it has violated its charter.
Finally, by the same section, whenever ~e President of the United
States shall have "reason to believe that the cllarter has been violated," he ., may order a scire facias to be sued out of the Circuit
Court of the District of Pennsylvania, calling on the said Corporation
to show cause wherefore the charter hereby granted shall not be declared forfeited."
This is the whole power of the President. ill relation to the Bank_
He may, if ho thinks that the charter has been violated, bring the
Bank before the court for trial. Now, in this manifesto, he distinctly
declares that the Bank bas acted" in direct violation of one of the
most important provisions of the charter." If 10, it was his duty to
issue the scire facias-to appeal to the Courts and Juries. That was
the only legitimate action which belonged to him. Bat a judicial investigation of his charges is precisely what be "dreaded. The Rlore
summary and illegal invasion of the powers of others, seems to have
more attraction than the legitimate exercise of his own. And, making
.himseif accuser and judge--disregarding the vote of Congress, 'the
authority of the Courts and Juries, and'the exclusive power of the Se-


cretary of the Treasury, he substitute. at ODee his own arbitrary will•.
Certainly since the foundation of thiljl Government, nothing has ever
been done which more deeply wounds the spirit of our free institutions.
It, in fact, resolves itself into this-that whenever the law. prescribe
certain duties to an officer, if that officer, acting under the sanctionl of
his official oath and his private cbaracter, refuses to violate that law,
the President of the United Statel may dismiss him and appoint another; and if he too should prove to be a "refractory subordinate," to
eontinue his removals until he at last diBcovera in the descending
lOale of degradation some irresponsible individual fit to be _ tool of
his designs. Unhappily, there are never wanting men who will think
u their superiors wish them to think-men who regard more the compensation than the duties of their office-men to whom daily bread il
sufficient consolation for daily shame.
The present state of this question is a fearful illuatration of the
danger of it. At this moment the whole revenue of this country, is
at the disposal-the absolute. uncontrolled disposai-of the President
ofthe United States. The laws declare that the public -funds shall be
placed in the Bank of the United States, unless -the Secretary of the
Treasury forbids it. The Secretary of the Treasury willl)ot forbid it.
The President dismisses him and appoints somebody who will. So
the laws declare that no money shall be drawn from the Treasury, except on warrants for appropriations made by law. If the Treasurer
refuses to draw his warrant for any disbursement, the President may
dismiss him and appoint some more flexible agent, who will not hesitate to gratify his patron. The text is in the official Gazette, announcing the fate of the dismissed Secretary to all who follow him.
" The Agent cannot cor&Bt:ientiOUll, perform the service and refuses to
co-operate, and deBire. to remain to thwart the President's measures.
To put an end to this difficulty between the head and the hands of ~e
Executive Department, the Constitution arms the Chief Magistrate
with authority to remove the refrac~ subordinate." The theory
thus avowed, and the recent practice under it, convert the whole free
institutions of this country into the mere absolute will of a single individual. They break down all the restraints which the framers of the
Government hoped they had imposed -on arbitrary power, and place
the whole revenue of the United States in the hands of the President.
The power, too, is asserted in a tone fitter for the East, than for
any country claiming to be governed by laws. The President de.
elares that, "in Iris opinion, the near approach of the termintltion oj

the charter, and the public conBiderations heretofort' mentioned, Are if
themsel"es amply suJlicient to j usti!.y the removal
I/,e deposita,
toithout rejerenc. to ,he conduct of the Bank, or their la{t!ly in it,


The only "public considerations heretofore mentioned," are his
own re-election, and his belief that the charter would nof be renewed.
So that the President here avows that although the last Congress passed a bill rechartering this very Bank-altbough the same Convess, a
few months ago, at bis own invitation, declared that the public deposits might be safely continued in this Bank-although a new Congreu,

many of wbose membere are ehosen by the people since his own election, is about to meet in ninety 4ays, and will continue in existence
for two yeara-although at the end of those two years a new Coogre.,
fresb from the people, will meet before tbe charter expires-yet
notwithstanding all this, be, the President declares, on his own re.
sponsibility, that the deposits shall be removed; no matter whether
the conduct of the .Bank has been good or bad, and DO matter whether
tbe deposits are safe or un,a{e; and, accordingly he dismiBSes the offi.
cer who refusel to remove tbem, and appoints another who will remove
At this moment the process of evading the law is in full practice.
By. the Constitution of the United States, (Sec. 9,) "no money shall
be drawn from the Treasury but in consequence or an appropn.tioo
made by law."
By the act of Sept. 1,1789, establishing the Treasury Department,
the Secretary of the Treasury i. authorized to" grant all warrants for
" moneys to be issued from the Treasury in pur811tJnce f!f appropna.
" tiona by law;" and. the same act furtber declares, that it shall be
tbe duty of the Treasurer to receive and keep the moneys of the
United States and to disburse the same, upon warrants drawn by the
Secretary 'of the Treasury, counterBipeel bg the CorRptroiler', recorded
by the Register, and ROt otlfNise/'
But there has been a usage of transferring funds from one branch of
the Bank of the U. S. to another, or one State Bank to another, when
the public service required disbursement'! at remote places. This IraM.
fer draft, intended to require an actual transfer! has been converted mto a mere check_ warrant in fact, though not in formand has been applied to the purpose of taking the funds out of
the place to which they are assigned by law, and transferring them to
the opposite side of the street. As it was never presumed that such a
power would be thus abused, tbe transfer draft bas fewer checks
tban the warrant for disbursement, the signature of the Comptroller,
who is the law officer of the Treasury not being usual; and accordingly by a strange anomaly, although the Treasurer's warrant to pay one
hundred dollars to an honest creditor of the Government must go
through a great variety of forms, the transfer draft for a million has
fewer formalities. By means of these transfer drafts, as will he seen by
the annexed correspondence, large sums of money have been withdrawn
from the Bank of the United States, and placed in State Banks in the
same city, without the slight~st referenC?e to the public disbursemeD~
and no less than two millions three bundred thousand dollars of the
public revenue have been placed at the discretion oftbe officers of the
State Banks by transfer drafts privately issued, and without the notice
to the Bank of the United Statef, which the Treasury had promised
'to give, and had hitherto always given of filimilar demands on the Bank.
The Committee willingly leave to the Congress of the United States
the assertion of their own constitutional power, and the vindication of
the principles of our Government, against the most violent assault they
have ever yet encountered; and will now confine themselves to tbe

more limited purpose ofshowing that the re88GBS assigned for this mea..
sure are as unfounded 88 the object itself is illegal.
The main purpose in fact of this manifesto, appears to be to prove
that the Bank was unfriendly to bis own election, and he endeavours to
trace this opposition to him and his meuUleS,
lat. In the .pplication to Congreaa for a renewal of the Charter.
2d. In the extension of the loans of the Bank in 18S1 and 1832.
Sd. In the claim for damages on the French Bill.
4th. In the circulation of documents vindicating the Bank from the
imputations which had been cast upon it.
All these assertions it ill proposed briefly to disprove.
1st. He first complainll that the Bank applied to CongrellS for a deeision in regard to its charter. He says" that there are strongre880nll
for believing that the motive of the Bank for 88king Cor a recharter at
tbat seaaion, W88 to make it a leading question in the election of a President olthe United States the ensuing November, and all steps were
deemed neceasarl to procure from the people a reversal of the President's decision;' and again-" the object avowed by manr. of the advocates of the Bank W88 to put the President to the test;' and moreover, "it W88 to compel the Prellident to take hill stand that the question W88 brougbt forward at that particular time." Now tbe fact is
that 80 far from prematurely butening discullsion on the part of tbe
Bank, it W88 lie Ai~lf wAG brouglt tAU"", quaftOII before Congre.., and rendered its discu88i~n inevitable. Thus,
In his MessBRe of December 8, 18~9, he said
"The Charter of the Bank of the United States expirell in 1836, and
its Stockholders will most probably apply for a renewal of their privileges. In order to avoid the evilll resulting from precipitancy in a
me88ure involving such important principles and such deep pecuniary
interests, I feel tbat I camwt, in juatice to tlle fJiJ.rtiu interuted, toe
aoon pruent it to the deliberate consideration of the Legislature and the
In bis Mesaage of December l1tb, 1880, he lIay.
"The importance oCtile principles involved in the inquiry whether
it be proper to re.cbarter the Bank of the United States, requires that
I Bhould 4Sain call the attention ofeongress to the subject."
In his Message of December 6, 18S1, he says,
" Entertaining the opinions heretofore expressed in relation to tbe
Bank oCthe United States,88 at present organized, I felt it my duty,
in my former Messages frankly to disclose them, in order that the attention of the legislature and the people sbould be IetUOMbly directed
to that important subject, and that it might be considered and finally
disposed of in a manner best calculated to promote tbe ends of the
Constitution, and 8ubserve the public interest. Having thu. consci.
entiously discharged a conlltitutional duty, I deem it proper, on tAitl
occ88ion, without a more particular reference to the views of the sub.
ject then expressed, to leatJe it at prelent to tAe in"utigation of an en·
ligltened people and tAeir repreBe1ltati~,."
It was under these distinct and repeated invitations by the Presj·


dent himself, that the Bank felt itself obliged not to decline his call
upon Congreaa, and accordingly the subject was brought before that

Both Houses of Conps passed the bill renewing the charter.
This result was unexpected to him, and althouarh he had declared in
the Meaaage just quoted, that he meant to "leave it at present to

the inve.tigatioA oJ an enlightened people and their repruentative."
-yet the moment the enlightened people and their representatives
dilfered from him in opinion, he treated them just as he"has recentl,r
done the conscience of the Secretary of the Treasury. He refused
his signature to the bill on the 14th of July, 1852, declaring that
"haa the executive been called upon to furnish the project of such
an institution, the duty would have been cheerfully performed." As
however no such .call was made he concluded that "tJB the charter
had yet fOur year. to run, a.nd aB a renlJfDal now WaB not neceIBary
te the mcce.Bjid pro.ecution of it. bu.inuB, it was £0 have been expected" &c. &c.
Here then the President begins in 1829, when the Bank bad
nearly .wen yea" to run, by telling Congress that to avoid precipitancy he could not too .oon present the subject of the re-charter to
their consideration. The next year, when the Bank had nearl,. Biz
yea" to run, he repeated to Congress that the importance of the
subject of the re-charter required tliat he .houid again call the attention of Congress to jt. The next year when the Ban k had Jive yta"
to run, he reiterated to Congress tbat he thought the attention of
Congress should be .easonabl!/ directed to this important SUbJectand then when Congress at hiS request proceeded to consider It and
renewed the charter, he sent it back with a declaration, that as the
charter had yet four yea" to run, there was no necessity for being
in haste about it.
And now in the face of all these testimonials of his urging Congress, ,.ear after year, to decide the question, as they decided
against him, he asserts that the Bank must have brought it before
Congress to defeat his election•
. His second proof is scarcely less extraordinary. He says that in
order to carry the election against him "although th ... charter was
approaching its termination, and the Bank was aware that it was the
intention of the Government to use the public deposit as fast as it
accrued in the payment of the public debt, yet did it extend its
loans from January 1851, to May 1852, from 842,402,504 S!4 to
870,428,070 72, beiJlg an increase of 828,025,766 48 in sixteen
months. It is confidently believed that the leading object of thil
immense extension of its Joans was'to bring as I~e a portion of the
people as possible under its power and inftuence.'
The errors here are as follows:1st. That the fact in regard to the increase of the loans il mis- .
ltated-and that the motives of them are wholly perverted.
The truth ii, that the loana at the periods mentIoned stood thus:-

January, 1851.
Loans to Individuals
855,575,403 45
Loan to Government
8,674,681 06
Domestic Bills
S52,706,758 39

May 1851.
847,575,078 !O
25,052,972 52
870,428,050 72
52,706,738 39
817,721,312 33

Baring, Bra. & Co. Cr. 2,587,5:n 19
Dr. 1,878,122 29.
I'romthis it is manifest that between those two periods the Bank
had received from GMernment the reimbursement .of
88,674,681 06

It had ,drawn for its (oreign funds 82,587,551 19
And drawn on its foreign correspondents for an additional
sum ,of
' .
1,878,122 29
Making a total of
4,~65,45S 48
Thus furnishing additional means of discounting
to the amount of
812,940,15:4 54
Yet its actual loans-its actual discounts, were
increased only
5,124,995 71
The Damestic· Bills of Exchange purchased for the transferring of
the funds of the Government or I}f individuals, make a separate and
independent business, dependant on the demand for the intetior
eommerce of the country. But ta~ing the increase of those bills into
consideration, it wiU be seen that the increase of loans ill
. .
85,124,.995 71
And the increase of Bills of Exchange
12,596,518 62
Making a tptal increase of

817,721,512 53

instead of 2S millions as asserted by the signer of the patJ&r. That
is to say, in the year 1851, thel'e being a most active foretgn and interior trade, requiring unusual facilities for its operations, the Bank
baving received from the Govt'rnment the reimbursement of it sloan
to Government, amounting to more than eight millions; and having
call,ed in its funds in Europe, and employed its credit there to the
amount of four millions, possessing thus additional means of loaning, to the amount of nearly thirteen millions, actually increased its
loans to the amount of seventeen millions, making in fact a mere increase of its investments not equal to five millions, of which increase
the new Branch Bank of- Natchez, established within that period,
alone contributed nearly three millions.
There are several circumstances which make this mis-statement~.
caliarly improper. He reproaches the Bank with this increase, although "the Bank was aware of the intention of the Government to




the public deposit as fast as it accrued, in the payment of the
public debt." Now the fact is, that this public deposit wu used as
we have just seen, in p'!!fing off the public debt. owned by the 8ank
it'elf-so that instead of lDcreasing its lOans in such a way as to interfere with the payment of the public debt to others, this very public debt was actually paid to the Bank itself, and furnished the very
means of increasin~ tlie loans.
What makes it stdl worse is, that this very public debt UHU in fact
"aid to t1&e Bank on tke ,olicitation of the Trealury it,elf,bifore the
• JJ.nIt UHU howad to receive it. On the 29th day of September, 1851,
the Secretary wrote to the President of the Bank. _
"The oWer made bl you this day, on behalf of the Bank or the
United States, for the Immediate reimbursement at ~ of the following stock. receivetl by that institution, is accepted, viz: .
91,188 92 of 4! per cents of 26th May, 1824.
5,260,475 99 of 4! per cents of 24~h May, 1824.

15,551,664 91


"The department fully appreciate,. thediBpOBition which the
Board of. Director, have mimi/Nted by thi' arrangtment, to co-aperate in tlas accompliBhment of it, deBire for the di,charge of the public debt as early as the means ofthe Treasury will permit."
It hu been thus seen, first, that the actual amount of increased
investment was less' by ten millions th~ is here asserted-second,
that the public debt whieh the Bank i. charged with not preparing
to PIlY, was actually paid to tbe Bank itself, and not merelY'paid to
the Bank, but paid before it was due, in order to accommodate the
Government. In regB:rd to this-increase, too, the points of com.,.·
rison are wbolly fallacious. From the I)ature of the business of the
country, the loans are necessarily larger in May than January, because the southern crop, with all. its business, enlarges the Spring
operatiom of tbe Bank-and no more just result ~an be had by comparing May and January, than by comparing .the thermometers of the •
two sea80n8. The true comparisons must be between January and
Januar,}' or between May and May. Now the fact is, that the in·
crease fnlm May to May of the .sllcces8ive years is comparatively
amall. The loaDS at the8e successive periods were as follow8:To

May,' l827,
" 1829,
" 1852,
" ]83S,
Nov. 1855,


58,118,707 46
57.555,T17 92
42, 894,587 90
45,206,694 12
55,582,067 75
70,428,070 72
64,519,900 7S
57,210,604 58


paid oft:








From ,,\aich it appears that this enlargement was gradual-that it
occurred when the wants of the country required the aid of this expansive -r.1wer, 80 valuable in the Institution, and that the increa..
has subSIded when. no longer required.
Supposin~ all this,. howeye~, to have been exactly as it has been
stated, that 18, supposlng·thls lDcreue of loans to bave been twentyei~t millioDs, what does it proveP Why that the Bank enlarged ita
business to meet the commercial wants of the country, and when
those want .. were supplied, the bUliness of the Bank of course subsided.' But the Prelident. can ascribe this increase to no other
cause than his own election. Accordingly. he saVl that the Bank,
in January. 1851, began to prepare for liil eleciion, which wal to
take place nearly two yean afterwards, by lending i8 millions It .
is somewbat hostile to. this theo.ry, that thil wliole increase had
reached its beipt in May, 18Si. Now, in December, J851, the Secretaryof the "'treasury, with th~ full approbation of the Prelident,
had spoken in the most favorable terms of the Bank. and he did not
sign liis veto. mes~ againlt it until Julr, 1852, up to which period,
it was doubtful whether be would veto It, and of course it was unknown whether the Bank would have the least reason to be op~sed
to bis election-and these whole 28 millions might have been uselessly lavished: 80 that the Bank increased its loans while it had no. interest in hill election. and did no.t inerease them ,-,hen he luppoaea
it bad. Truly this mode o.f " briDf,ng al large a portion of the pe0ple under its power and inluence, , seems singularly ill-timed.
3d. In recurrence to his own election. he next proceeds to declare that "whatever may be the o.pinion of o.thers, the President considers his re-electio.n as a decision of the people againlt the
Bank." Now, it is difficult fo.r anyone to believe this, since it
is that Rlany of the most decided friends of the Bank were
his zealous supporters. Toos Pennsylvania was the most efficient.
of them all; yet that same PennlylvaDla, with extraordinary unanimity, in February, 18S1, passed ttie following resolution: .
',' That the constitution o.f the United States authorizes, and near
~, half a c.entury's experience sa~ctions. jl Bank of the United States,
" as necessary and proper to regulate the value of money, and pre" vent paper currency of unequal and depreciated value. t'
And again, with equal unanimity in February. 18Si, the follow-

ing:"That the Senators from this State in the Congress of the Uni"ted States be instructed. and the Representatives requested, to.
" use their exertions to obtain a renewal of the charter of the Bank
" of the United States during the present lession of Co.ngress, with
" such alterations (if any be necessary) as may secure tlie righta of
" the States. .,
Sitch a belief, moreover, is oJ)posed by his own declaration in
the Veto Message, that H a new Congress, elected in the midst of
luch discussion. and furnishing an equal representation of the people according to the last census. will bear to the Capitol the verilict
of public opinion, and, I doubt not, bring this question to a aatiaf'acto.r.! result."
Now, that Congre88 to which he referred the decisio.n of theques-

tion, had not yet assembled. In some parts of the country the members bad not been even el'ected at the time of signing this manifesto;
and yet, he now asserts, that he " considers it as conclusively settled that the charter of the Bank of the United, States will not be
renewed, and he has no reasonable ground to believe that any sub,stitute will be established. Being bound to regulate his course
by the laws as they exillt, and not to anticipate the interference
of the Legislative power for the purpose of framing new syst~m8,
it is proper for him .eaBonably to consider the means by which. the
services rendered by the Bank ot the United States, are to be
performed after its charter shall expire ,. This seems to involve an inconsistency•. There was a Congress. about to meet in
ninety days, to which very Congress he had referred the -question of
the Bank. There was a new Congress to meet in December, 1855,
before the expiration of the charter. Yet does he now declare that.
since the people elected him and he was opposed to the Bank, he
revokes all he· said about the Congress of 1855, disregards the
Congress of 1855, and chooses to consider it settled without any
'''interference of the Legislative power."
The- next head of complaint is the postponement of a portion of
the three per cents. by the Government in April, 1852; and of another portion by the Bank in December, .1852. Now, it is very remarkable that both these subjects were fully examined-the first by
the Committee of Investigatiol,l of 1852-, anil the second by the Committee of Ways and Means of 18SS-and both reports are in decided
contradiction to the (lBlleftions of the President. For instance, he
complains of the first postponement, which he imputes to the Bank,
whereas the Committee of Investigation themselves declare, "t~
are fully oj opinion that the Bank neither lOught ff'r nor .requeBted a
po.tponement of the payment by tile Government." He complains of
• the second postponement, yet the Committee of Ways and Means
report, that the nominal postponement had, in' fact, cI()sed the'pa1ment sooner than if no postponement had been 'made; alld that" thIS
question seems no longer to present an] important or practical object of inquiry, or to call for or admit oJ any action of CongreBII ilpon it."
This would .seem to be perfectly satisfactory; yet, lest the revival
of these charges may mislead the unsuspectmg, it may be well to
refute them again, as they have been often refuted before; and fi.~t
of the postponement in October. He savs of it:
"ConscIous that at the end of that quinter the Bank would not be
able to pay over the dep,osits, and that further indulgence was not to
be expected of the Government, an agent was despatched to England
secretly, to negociate with the holders of the public debt in Europe,
and induce them by the offer of an eq\1al or blgher interest ~han that
paid by the Government, to hold back theil' claims for one year, during which the Bank expected thus to retain the use of 85,000,000
of public money, whicli the Government sho1,l1d set apart for the
payment of that debt. The agent made an arrangement on terms, in
part, which were in direct violation of the charter of the Bank; and

when some incidents connected with this secret n~ciation accidenta1l1 came to the knowledg~ of the public and.·th~ Goyernment, then
and not before so much of It as was palpably 10 VIolation of the charter was disavowed!"
. If there be anyone matter in regard to which the Bank is more
beneficialthan ·any other matter, it is. precisely this agency in paying
off the public debt; and if there be any cases in the course of that
agency more useful than any other cases, they are precisely these
two cases which are here made the subjects of reproach.
The whole collection of the revenue is based on the system, that
funds are nevet' accumulated in the Treasury. for a long period.• but
are principally lent out to the community, and only called for as
they are needed for the public service. Whenever, therefore, large
payments are made by' the Government, as·it is necessary to withdraw from the use of·the community considerable sums, this process
requires some delicacy in recalling" from distant parts of the United
States as much as may answer the immediate exigency, :yet not enough
to press disadvantageousl:r on the community. ThIS IS the especial
function of the Bank. How well it has succeeded may be inferred
from the testimonials of the successive Secretaries of the Treasury.
Thus, Mr. Rush, in his Treasury Report of the 1$th of December,
1828, says:
. "In this manner, beavy payments of the debt are in effect, made
gradually, instead of the whole mass being thrown at once upon tna
money market, which might produce injurious shocks. So prudently in
this and other respect. doe. the Bar,k aid the operation 'oj paying ojfthe
debt, that the cCJmmunity hardly haB a cOnCiOUB1le8B that it is goirag on."
And Mr. Ingham~ in like manner, on the] lth of July, 1829, says: .
" I take the occasion to express the great satisfaction of the Treasu.
ry Department at the manner in which the President and Directors of
the parent Bank have discharged their trusts in all their. immediate reo
lations to the Government, so far as their transactions have come under
my notice, and especially in the facilities afforded in transferring the
funds of the Government, and in the preparationfor the hea'D1l payme1It oj the public debt, on the firM inMant, which haB been e.lfected by
means of the prudent arrangements of your Board, .at a time of seyere
depreSSIon on all the producti ve employments of the country, without
causing any sensible additiQns ~o the pressure, or even visible effect
upon the ordinary operations of the State Banks.",
Finally, the President himself, in his Message to Congress.of De.
cember, 1829, says:
"It was apprehended that the withdrawal of so large a sum from
the Banks in which it was deposited, at a time of unusual pressure on
the money market, migb'\: cause much injury to the interests depen.
dant on bank accommodations. But this evil was wholly averted by
an early anticipation of it at the Treasury, aided by the judicious ar.
rangeme1lts of the oJIicers oj the Bank of the. United States."
It had thus become the habitual policy of the Bank at the approach
of any large payment, to begin its preparations for a long period in

.advance, io as to cpllect its relOurcel gradually, and to distribute it.
diabursements over astwide a sphere as possible.
In tbe year 1832, the country wu he:lVily indebted to Europe for
the large importations of the year 1831; and it was particularly desirable to give to the community leisure to pay that debt out of their
annual earnings, and to prevent any addition to tbe foreign demand
in 1832. Now there were more than twenty-five mi1lionl and a balf
of the principal and interest of that debt payab~e in the year 1832from Dec. 31, 1831, to Jan. 1, 1833-0r which more than fifteen mil~
lions were to be 'paid in nine months, and between eight and nine of
it to foreigners. The Bank was fully prepared to make the first payment on the lst of October, 1832.
,The State Banks of Philadelphia, New York
and Boston, owed to this Bank,
... 8,200,000
Its specie at these places alone wu
Its funds ill Europe were Making of cuh in band, or its equivalents,
- 88,462,000
With an open credit in Europe, on which to .
draw. for
. ,
Besides not less than twenty milIions of debts, to be used for this
purpose-while the whole public debt to be paid on the first of October, wils 88,634,988 37.
In this state the Bank,bad it considered only its own interest,
would have been perfectly passive, since it was perfectly at ease.
:But it bad other and higher interests to (lonsult. From the communication with the Treasury iQ July, it was probable that the funds of
the Government might be insufficient to pay th~ debt advertised .to be
paid---and that even if these funds. were adequate, the operation would
exhaust all tbe means of the GOJ'ernment, and require that the community should repay the whole amount of tbe public funds distributed
among them. It was furtber manifest that the ability. of the Government to meet its engQgements, depended entirely on the punctual payment of the revenUe in the commercial cities, from July to' January,
which was estimated at about twelve millions of dollars.
That resource was threatened' with the greatest danger by the rq»pearance of the Cholela, which had already begun its ravages in New
York and Philadelphia, with every indication of pervading tbe whole
country., Had it continued as it began, and all the appearances in July
warranted the beJief of its continuance, there can be no doubt it would
have prostrated all commercial credit, and seriously endangered the
public revenue, as in New York and Philadelphia alone, the demand
on account of the foreign three per cents was about five millions.
The Bank, therefore, made an arrangement with the foreign owners
of tbis stock, to the amount of 84,175,373 92 to leave their money
in the country Cor another year, the Bank assuming to pay the interest instead of the Government.' Having settled tbis, the Bank resumed its ullual facilities of business to the community. Of the wbole
four millions postponed, the interest on them has ceased, and at this
moment the only certificatt's not yet actually returned, are tbose in the
name of two persoos, amounting to 842,375 94 aod it is remarkable,

that while .of the whole amount of 84,17,S7S 91 purchased alld
postponed, there remain unpaid only two owners, holding 842.375 94;the amount of the unpO£\tponed threes still outstanding is five or ten
times as much. So that in fact as was anticipated in the report of the
Committee of Way. and Means, tbe poatpoaement bas actually hasten.
ed ita payment.
AU these things were fully explailled by the Committee of Ways
and Means, to whom that part of the President's Me88age was referred,
and that Committee accordingly leported as fellows!"The arrangement made by the Bank for a temporary postponement,
with the consent of the holders of the payment of five millions of the
three per cent. debt, being now substantially closed by the surrender
to the Government, of the certificates of stock, except for a' small
'amount, and the whole debt itself, as far as respects the Government,
at an earlier period than it is probable it would otherwise have been,
this question ,mJU no ~er to pre,wany i;nporlant or practical ob.

ject of inquiry, or to callJor, or admit any aetion of CongruBupon it."

Thill ought to be satisfactory, yet is the subject now revived with
the addition of two distinct errors in point of fact. The first is that
the Bank ~, was conscious that at the end of the quarter it would not be
able to pay over the depoeita"-whereas tbe state of the Bank, as
above explained, proved its entire ability to make this payment, and
that its interposition wu exclusively dictated by the desire to avert an
additional trouble at a season of pestilence. The second is, that the
part bC tbe amngement made with the agent of the Bank was not dis.
avowed until" some iDci~ents connected with this secret, negoeiation,
accidentally came to the knowledge of the public and the Govern·
ment." The fact is, that as soon as that part of the arrangement which
seemed to contlict with the charter, was received, the determination
was made to decline executing it before any.publication of any sort
was seeR or known in regard to it.
The evidence of this is so clear and 80 short, that it deserves to be
cited as an example of the geoeraJ inaccuracy of this manifesto. The
Committee of EXchange, in their report to Congre88 of January 29,
18SS, declare as follows!
" But when the contract itself reached the Bank, on the 12th of
"October, and it appeared from the communication of Messrs. Ba.
" ring, Brothers & Co., that the stock was to be purchased on account
"of the Bank, they were immediately instructed, on the' 15th of Oc·
" tober, that the Bank had no authority to become owners pf the
" stock," .&c. &e.
When two of the members of that Committee were examined on
oath before the Committee of Ways and ,Means, they confirmed the
statement as follows:
Question. Had the President or Exchange Committee, any iDten·
tion to disavow GeneralCadwaJader's authority to make the contract
he did, 8ntil after the appearance in the New Yerk papers of the
11th or lith October last, of the circular of the Baringa to the foreign
• n-ber 0, IUS.

Now only arre ptncm. holdlDr 8fiI'{¥7'


holders of the U. S. S per cent. stocks, . announcing to them, that
they had the authority of the Bank to purchase or negotiate a postponement of the stocks held by them.
Answer of Mr. Manuel E1re. I can .allre, poritively. 1 recolkct it perjertl'll rcell. When I first read thiS letter, I said it was not
proper and disavowed it.
Jlnsl.Der of Mr. Matthew L. Bevan.· 1 never did see myself, the
notice r(erred to in the New York ~ers, but well. recollect the
moment the letter was received ~ving information of the proceedings in relation to that negociatlon, the Prerident of the Bank, with
the approbation of the Exchange Committee, immediately wrote,
disavowing the nature that arrangement, it 1&aving been made under a misapprehension.'
The complaint in regard to the pOstponement by the Government
in April, 18S2, is of the same character. He says, that" after this
negotiation had commenced, the Secretary of the Treasury informed
the Bank that it was bis intention to pay oft· one-balf' of the three per
cents on the first of the succeeding July, which amounted to about
86,500,000. The President of tbe Bank. althougb the Committee of
investigation was then looking into its affairs at -Philadelphia, came
immediately to Washington, and upon representing that the Bank
was desirous of accommodating tlie importing merchants at New
York, (which it failed to do)anu undertaking to pay the interest itself, procured the consent of the Secretary, after consultation with·
the President, to postpone the payment until the succeeding ficst of
The impression here intended to be conveyed is, that the President of the Bank, in order to relieve the Institution from a demand
which it could not sustain, asked an indulgence which was conceded
by the Government. Now the truth is, tliat the Government wisbed
to make the postponement, but could not do it without the aid of
the Bank. Mr. M'Duflie, Chairman of the Committee of Ways and
Means, and Mr. Cambreleng, Chairman of the Committee or Commerce, who were then membets of the Committee of Investigation at
Philadelphia, wrote letters to the Secretary of the Treasury dissuading the Government from makin~ the payment. The only difficulty in doing it was, that the Commissioners of the Sinking Fund had
no authonty to pQstpone the J!llyment, as they would be obliged to
pay the quarter's interest dunng !he three month's delay-and this
difficulty was removed by the PreSIdent of the. Bank, who agreed to
pay the interest as the money would remain in the hands .of the
Bank. The letter, ju.t mentioned mere accordingly submitted to the
Prerident, who never saw the Secretary oj the Treasury on the subject,
as that $entleman was rick, and who 7&imBel/ decided on th, po.tponemen! aJ'er .ering the recommendation of Mr. M'DldJie and Mr. Cambrelertg. Much stress is also laid on t1ievisit of tlie Presitlent of the
Bank to Washington, while the Committee of lnvestigation were in
Philadelphia. The truth was. the letter of the acting Secretary was
received so immediately before the period fixed for iS9uingthe notice
of payment, that if any thing were to be done at all, it was to be



done only by personal communication with the Secretary, as there
was no ·tlme for corresJ!Ondence. The gentlemen of the Committee wer.e aware of his gomg, and two of its members wrote letters to
promote his object. Besides, his leaving the Committee of Investigation in full possession of the Bank and all its papers, 10 far from
being a subject of reproach or suspicion, is the flU rest mark of his
entire reliance that tllere was nothmg in the concerns of the Bank
wbich.theymight not examine at.leisure during his absence, and was
tbe beat proof of his confidence in them as well as himself. The
wbole subject was before the Committee of Investigation of 1832,
and that Committee aclmowledgtd, as will be seen from the following
extract from their report, that thu postponement waI not the. fDork
of the Bank. The Committee 8&YU They made a caU upon the President of the Bank for the corre8pQndence in relation to the postponement of thatlayment, in the
folrowing words: .. Will you pleue give a copy 0 the correspondence connected with your application in March last, re9.ue,tinlS a
suspen8ion by the Government of the payment of a portion of Its
debt intended to have been made on the first of Jury next, or a
statement of the arraJ.lgement made in relation to ili8.t subject."
Which correspondence was communicated by the President of the
Bank with the following remarks:
"I have made no application to the Government, nor bave I requested any suspension of the payment of any portion of the public
"The inquiry, I suppose, relates to this circumstance; 'I received a letter from the acting Secretary of the Trearury, dated the
24th March, 1832, informing me that Government was about to issue
a notice nn the 1st of April, of their intention to pay, on the lst of
July 1Iext, one-half of the three per cent. stock, a.nd to do it by paying to each stockholder one-half of the amount of his certificate.'"
He added,
'If any objection occurs to you either as to the 11mount or mode
of payment, I wiil thank you to suggest it.'
"Thus invited by the Government in a communication marked
'confidential,' to ~ve my opinions on a measure contemplated by
the Government, I felt it Diy duty to express my views of Its probable operation: in my repll therefore, dated 29th of March, I stated
'that so far a'l the Bank IS concerned, no objection occurs to me, it
being sufficient that the Government has the necessary amount of
funds in the Bank to make the contemplated paJ!llents.' I then
proceeded to observe, that in the present situation of the commercial
community, and with a very large amount of revenue, (amounting to
nine millions,) to be paid before the 1st of July, the debtors of the
Government would require all the forbearance and all the aid that
could be given them; and that the payment proposed, by creating a
c!emand for the remittance of sevel'lll millions of dollars to EuroJl8an
stockholders, would tend to diminish the usual facilities aWorded to
the debtors of the Government, and might endanger the punctual
4 •

payment of the revenue. For this reason t tbought it for the interest of the Government, to postpone the payment till the next quarter. I further stated, tbat the plan of paying to each stockholder
only one-balf of his. loan, would not be so acceptable as if his whole
loan were> repaid at once.
" Having thus performed my duty in giving the opinion asked, I
left it, of course, to the Government to decide. On tbe part of the
Bank, [ sought nothing, 1 requested nothing. After weighing the
circumstances, the Government were desirous of adopting the mealure, but the difficulty I understood to be this, that the sinking fund
would lose the quarter's interest, from July to October,of the sum
intended to be paid in July; and that the Government did not feel
itself justified in making the postponement unless that interest could
be saved, but that it would be ma(Je, provided the Bank would make
the sinking fund whole on the lst of October. To this I said, that
as the Banlt would haYe the use of the fund, during the three months,
it would consent to save the sinking fund harmless, by paying the
three months interest itself; as the matter stands.
"Now, it will be seen, that the Bank, in all this, has had not the
least agency, except to offer its opinion, wben it was asked, in re~rd to a measure proposed by the Government; and then toolTer
Its aid in carrying that measure into operation.~' "The Committee
are fully of opinion that though the Bank neither" sought" for, nor
" requested" a 'Postponement of the payment by the Government, as
stated in the declaration of the President, yet if such postponement
had not been made, the Bank would not, on the 1st of July, have
possessed the ablity to have met the demand, without causing a scene
of great distress in the commercial community."
The next evidence adduced of the Bank's opposition to him, i. it.
claims for damages. Of this he gives the following account: " .
"The BaRk became the purchaser of a bill drawn by our Govern" ment on that of France for about 900,000 dollars, being the first in.
" stalment of the French indemnity. The purchase money was left
" in the use of the Bank, being simply added to the Treasury depo"site. The Bank sold the Bill in England, and the holder sent it to
"France for collection, and arrangements not having been made by
" the French Government for its payment, it was taken up by the
'.' agents of the" Bank in Paris, with the funds of the Bank in their
"hands. Under these circumstances it has, through its organs, open" ly assailed the credit of the Government, and has actually made and
" persists in a demand of fifteen per cent. or 8158,842 77 as dama.
" gee, when no damage, or none beyond some trifling expense has in
" fact been sustained, and when the Bank had in its own possession
" on deposit, several millions of the public money which it was then
" using for its own profit. Is a fiscal agent to the Government, which
" thus seeks to enrich itself at the expense of the public, worthy of
" further trust1"
First. It is not corred to state thattke Bank Wtu the" .fiacal agent"
of the G""ernment in this matter. On tAecontrarg, the focal agency

D-i~itiZ~d by Coog Ie


- -.


of th Bank tDCI8 qfered tDit1aota any CW6e to tke Gooermnent, and
declined. The Bank did not wish to purchase this Bill at all, but
proposed to' collect it, paying the money only after it had been reo
ceived by the agents of the Bank in France. Thus when tlie Secretary
of the Treasury wrote to the Bank about this bill, the President of
the Bank in his answer dll,ted November 5, 1852, said
" 7ie Bank lao., dready in Pari, 0. larger IUm tlao.n it laGS any immediate we for, yet it is not indisposed to increase it because it may
hereafter have occasion for the funds, and because it is believed that
if the terms can be made acceptable, the purchase of the whole by the
Bank, would be tke be" operation for tke-Gooernmentj"-and again in
the same letter" In regard to the rate, you are the most competent judge of its fit·
ness, and I wUI merely add, that the Bank not wanting funds in Paris,
and belie,ing that they will be lower hereafter, would not make a Ii.
milar purcbase from any other quarter, and i, ilflluenced ea:clflBi1rely hi
tke belief tlaat any other arrangement would be leu adM~ to the



So in his letter of the 11th of February, 1833," The purchase of the
bill is not in the leu desirable to tke Bank, nor would the rate now ale
lowed be given to any other drawer than the Government, for we shall
lend by the same conveyance which carriea your bill, Ii large amount of
bills purchased at 5.45, being nearly I i per cent. leu than the price
actually given to the Treasury."
The Bank then did not wish to purchase the bill. But the Bank
offered its agency to collect it on the following terma, on the 6th No. vember, 1852.
"Should you prefer not fixing a rate at prelent, but to take the
chances of a higher rate hereafter, tke Bank on recei'Ding your bill,
would place the amount of it to the credit of tke Government on tile 2d of
March, at the current rate of exchange of the best billa on that day in
Here then was a distinct proposal to collect the bill just as the Bank
collects bills for individuals, 80 that ifthe bill had, in Nov. 1832, been
sent to the Bank, it would have been forwarded to Europej' 'aDd if on
the 2d of Feb~ 1835, when it was payable in Paris, it had not been
paid, the Bank would have been apprised of that fact, and would not
have made the payment on the 2d of March, and the whole transaction
would have been closed. This course, however, the Government did
not adopt--but after considering the offers for the bill made from
other quarters, decided to sell it to the Bank.
Secondly. It is not the fact that this money" was left in the use of
the Bank, being simply added to the Treasury Deposits."
Suppose that it had been, it would not in the slightest degree affect
the question of damages. When a party sells a bill, and is paid for it,
that is, has the funds placed to his credit to be drawn whenever he
chooses without further notice, the party is as much paid-the fund.
belongs as little to the Bank-as if the party had actually withdrawn
the whole sum in specie. But not only was the fund in this case drawn

from the general resources of tbe Bank, and placed to the credit ot
the Treasury, but immediately after tbat was done Congre8S passed a
law to lend the money, and the Secretary of the Treasury issued a
notice that this money was to be fortbwitb lent out. to capitalists, tbat
is to say to be immediately withdrawll. Tbe credit given to the
Treasurer was on the lltb of February, 183S. The notice of the
Secretary dated tbe 6tb of Marcb, offered to lend out this money after
the 20tb of March-of course the Bank could make no use of iton tbe contrary, as it would probably be withdrawn immediately, it
became Dot merely useless as a deposit, but rffiJuired tbe Bank to
Ibape its loans to others, 80 as to provide for the immediate payment.
Nor is tbis all. Not only was this SUID passed to the credit of tbe
Treasure~not only was the early witbdrawal of it from tbe Bank an·
nounced by the Secretary, but tllt identical proceeds of ·this identical
.French MU, t«re a tually ulled by tle Gtmernmentfor the payment ofits



The account of tbe Treasurer at tbe Bank stood thus:February 11,
S717,264 22
1,735,460 40
(in consequence of the payment for the Frencb bill,)
iSl,842,658 14
February 25,
March 4,
1,620,699 89
1,551,627 97
1,560,783 63.
1,496,907 45
1,052,862 10
April 8,
1,082,560 88
918,816 61
. 746,615 61
826,070 90
May 6,
814,046 61
774,630 47
431,560 43
When tbe money was repaid.
It will thus be seen, that tbere was at tbe credit of tbe Treasurer on
the 18th of February, the sum of $1,735,460 40, of wbich 8903,565
89 wer~ the proceeds of the Frencb bill, and as in the month of April
there was to his credit only $746,613 61, the difference between these
two sums, that is to say $156,952 28 had been drawn for out of that
fund of 8903,565 89.
Accordingly when the Treasurer came to repay the money, he had
not enough of it remaining_but was obliged to draw on funds elsewhere, 80 that in acknowledging the receipt of hill draft on the 11th of
May, 1833, the Cashier ofthe Bank added,
", Your transfer check for t700,OOO on the office of the Bank of the
United States at New York will appear at tbe credit of your account
this day, and will thUB pre1'ent the OfJerdrafl tcAich the charge now

ad"iaed would otherwm ha'De occasioned."

In the United States then the Bank had paid the amount of the hill
in its least convenient form. But when it WllS protested in Paris the
agents of the Bank finding a bill with its name upon it protested, came
forward and paid it on account of the Bank-so that the Bank had actually paid for this bill twice over--()nce in Philadelphia and once in
Pari~that is, it had of course a credit (or tbe proceeds of the sale oC
the bill in London, but its actual disbursements on account of the bill
were 'upwards of $1,800,000.
What makes the case stron~r is this-that on the ftd of March,
the day when the protested bill came back to the Bank, the whole,
amount at the credlt of the Treasury throughout the whole U. States,
with the exception of the Danish indemnity money, was 81,827,048
88 cts. Now the Bank had advanced 8903,565 89 in Philadelphia,
and 8921.590 18 in Paris, making 31,825,156 07, so that although it
had credit in England for the bill sold there, the Bank had actually
advanced on account of this bill a sum equal within less than
two thousand doll an, of the whole funds of the Government in the
When the bill returned protested, the Bank, as the endorser, called upon the Government to pay the principal and the damages. It
did this as a matter of course. It did it as a matter of the clearest
duty the Government, because if the Government had any right
at all to draw the bill, it had a right to make France pay the (Jamages fer its breach of contract, and it had no mode of claiming
agamst France, unless in the first instance it paid the damages to
the Bank, which it might the more readily do, as being one-fifth
partner of the Bank. its own share of the $158,000 would be
But whether the French Government pays these damages or not,
it is manifest that the American Government must pay tbem-and
this upon the simple 'plinciples, not of equity, but of ordinary honesty.
From the foundation of the Government to the present day. whenver the Government has purchased a bill from a private· citizen, and
that bill has fl"om whatever cause returned protested, no matter how
hard the case may be, no maUer what circumstances of excuse or
mitigation may be olrered by the citizen, no matter whether ~m~es
were actuallv sustained or not. the Government has rigorously enforcell its claim (or damages. It has not merely forced a solvent merchant
to pay, but has insisted that its claim for damages should have its
Jegal precedence over all the just rights of the otlier creditors of an
i!lsolvent; and now whim the case is changed, when the'Government
sells its own bill to its own citizens, and that bill returns protested,
with what propriety, nay with what pretensions to common honesty,
can the Government presume to deny the same justice to its own
citizens. The books.of the Treasurv are crowded with cases of damages exacted by the Government from American citizens-and
one i~ now selected m'erely from its peculiar aptness to the present


Some years ~, Mr. Stephen Girard 1014 to the Treasury fou.r
bills, two of whIch returned protested owing to the insolvency of his
correspondenUIl London; WRen the two others became due they
Wllre paid for the honour of Mr. Girard by the Messrs. Barings, who
also agreed to pay the two first in London, as of the day on which
they were payable. Mr•. Girard applied to Congress for exoneration
from the claim of twenty per cent. damages, alleging.
"That from the said sum of £22.500 sterling, due on the 18th
August last, being passed by Sir Francis Baring lit Co., to the credit
of the Secr~tary of the Treasur,r of the United States,' as on the
day the same became due' no reO.llou or damage can accrue to the
United States from the said bills being returned under protest."
Congress rejected the claim, and Mr. Girard paid the damages of
twenty per cent.
On that occasion, the Committee of Claims called on the Secretary
of the Treasury, M.r. Gallatin; and in his answer, which makes part
of their report, he says that he had rejected Mr. Girard's claim for
four reasons, of which the two most essential are:
"lst. Because, considering the large amount of bills (more than
two millions of dollars,) annually purchased on account of Government, it appearM absOlutely nece88ary never to give up the damages
whenever a legal right to them /,ad accrued, and because that r~ht
/'aB .in every instance, without regard to person, or c-ircumstances,
been ertforced.
"2d. Because, if abandoned in this instance and for that reason,
every drawer who was solvent might by making a remittance to the
banlCer' in Europe, after ~ills protested Jor non-paY'!'e1}l had been re·
turned to tIle Treasury, induce them to make a slmtlar offer, and
evade the payment of damages.
.The lapse of years at last reversed the..s~te of the parties. • Mr.
Girard becomes the largest stockholder 111 a corporation called the
Bank of the United States, and he and his partners, in the cOQrse of
their business, purchase a bill from this same officer, the Secretary
of the Treasury, which comes back {»rotested after having been twice
paid for. Mr. Girard's heirs and hiS associates appl,r to the Secretary~not even for the same amount which Mr. Girard formerly paid
-not tor twenty pel" cent. the damages in Pennsylvania-but for
fifteen per cent. the l\amages i~ Washington; and the only answel'
vouchsafed by the Treasury D~partment is, that the claim" has no
foundation in law or equitY"-to which the President now adds, that
it is an attempt to. "impair the credit of the Government, and
tarni8h the honour of the country." Such. a course tends to an
utter confusion of all ideas of jus~i~e; nor is it a thing tolera~!e by
the AmerIcan people, that an mdlVldual shall go among the cItizens
purchasing bills and exacting damages, and when his own bill, sold
to these Sll-me citizen~, returns prQtested, he shall wrap himself up in
his official immunity, and refuse to do to his fellow-citizens what he
has compelled them to do to him.
. But supI?osi~~ all t~is to be direc.tly. the. reverse of 'Yhat it .really
IIl-SUpposlDg the claim to be questionable lDstead of bemg eqUitable,

is there any thing in it which can at all justify this denunciation of'
the Bankr Here is a claim made b'y certain Americall citiuns for
damages on a bill of exchanl5e, which they have ~hased of the
Government. The question IS a legal one.· The Jodicial tribunals
are to decide it. Yet while the Hank is quietly waiting the action o.f the lllws. the .President of thel!nited States prejudges the
questJon-denounces the Bank ,for bavlOg presumed to make the
claim-and gives that to the country as a reason why he should instantly remove a, Secretary of the Treasury, in order to subject the
whole public revenue of tlie United States to his own dis{108iil.
In further illustration of the o}?position of the Bank to hIS election,
he next proceeds to treat of certaID acts of the Board of Directors.The annunciation of these is prefaced by remarks on the m~itude
and importance of the facts, their recent disclosure and theIr great
enormity; and the whole is concluded by a complaint of the. "hundreds of thousands and even millions" which may be employed in
subverting the liberties of the country and in disparaging tlie Executive. How little foundation in fact there is for all this will be
readily seen by examining the allegations in the order in which they
are presented.
First. He says, that "although the charter and tbe rules of the
Bank both declare that' not less than seven directors' shall be necessary to the transaction of business, ye.t the most important business,
even that, of granting discounts to any extent, is entrusted to a committeeotfive members who do not report to the Board."
No,w, the charter does not require seven directors to make discounts.
Nor do the rules of the Bank require seven directors.
Nor is it true that any. committee of five have this power to discount.
Nor does any committee discount without reporting to the Board.
The charter says that "nC?t less than. seven directors shall. consti- "'
tute a Board for tne transactIon of buslOess." But the busIDess of
the Board is not exclusively nor primml,. to make loans:-its business is to govern the whole Institution. If the charter required seven Directors to make a discount, it would have said 80 of the Boards
of Directors of the Branches. whose more exclusive business it is to
discount. But it places no such restrlctionon the Branches. where
by far the greater iliscounts are made. The business of the Board is
to prescribe how the details of the operations of the Bank are to be '
made-it may: delegate a portion of its power of makin~ loans to
Committees; for in truth to re9uire a Board of seven DIrectors to
meet before any bill could be discounted, would entirely destroy the
most useful operations of the Bank-and accordingly the Exchange
Committee meet every day for the purchase of burs, and their purchases are submitted to the Board at their next meeting. It would
be supposed from the mllnner in which it is stated, tnat this was
some recent innovation. So far from it, the discounting of bills of
exchange was formerly done by a smaller number than at present.
On the 13th of February, 1821, during th4' administration of Mr.

Cheves,' and before the time of the present officers, a rule was adopted that- ~
" In the abaence of the Exchange Committee, the President and
Cashier sball be authorized to purchase exchange which may be offered for Bale, if an immediate answer be desired, and report such
purchases to the Exchange Committee at its next meeting thereaf.




Thus giying the power here complained of to only a single Director
of the Bank. Yet no one ever imagined that it was a viofation of the
charter. In truth it is a power exercised very generally by the officei'll
of Banks throughout the United States.
The second is-" To cut oft' all means of communication with the
Government in relation to its most important acts, at the commencement of the present year, not one of the Government Directors wu
plaeed on anyone Committee. And although, since, by an unusual
remodelling of those bodies some of those Directors have been placed
Ifil some of the Committees, they are yet entirely excluded from the
Committee of Exchange, througb whicb the greatest and most objec.
tionable loans have been made."
Tbere are two things remarkable in tbis paragraph-first, the strange.
ness of the confession; arid next; the fallacy of the statement. It is
here li88erted that not to have the Government Directors on Commit·
tees is to "cut off' all means of communication with the Government
in relation to its most important acts ;" that, i, to say, that the confidential opinions and the unreserved expressions used by their colleagues on a Committtee are to be communicated to the Government.
It is precisely this fact, thus officially announced, which would make
these Directors unsafe depositories of the confidence of their colleagues.
" At the commencement of the present year," he proceeds, " not one
of the Government Directors was placed on anyone Committee." Now
of tbese Directors, who could then be appointed, there were hut two residents of Philadelphia-the third not baving yet been appointed.
,Why these two Directors, one of whom had just come, for the first
time, into a banking institution, were not named on the Committees, .
in the place of old' and valued Directors, it would be more invidious
than difficult to decide; but that there was no studied exclusion was
obvious from the fact that at the very Hext quarterly appointment, two
out of the three Government Directors were placed on Committees.
Nor is there any foundation for tbe assertion tbat an " unusual remodelling" of these Committees has taken place., On the contrary, the
Committees were appointed quarterly, as tbey have (01' years been appointed, and not the slightest remodelling of them~ usual or unusual,
has taken place. As to the Exchange Committees, who are charged
with the arrangement of the Foreign and Domestic Exchanges of the
Bank, requiring commercial experience and knowledge of the busi- .
ness and the credit of individuals, tbose wbo are presumed most qualified are most naturally chosen. These Directors bave no claim to
the slightest distinction- above their colleagues, and they must take
their chance with the other members in the formation of Committees.

IIi truth, men will cboose their associates on committees, as in evert
thing else, from confidence in tbeir capacity or their personal qlitlh.
ties; and not to be cbosen to places,of trust implie!l only that others
are more trusted.
The tbird is--" It has long been known that the President of the
Bank, by his single will, originates and executes many of the most
important measures connected with the management of the credit of
the Bank; and that the Committee, as well as the Board of Directors,
are left in entire ~gnorance of ma~y acts done, and -correspondence
carried on in their names lind apparently under their authority."
An assertion so general can only be met by as general a denial;
at the llame time, the Committee deem it their duty to declare,
that this allegation, so positively made, as of a known and acknowledged fact, while it charges the Board of DirElCtors witb ..
dereliction of their duty, and a surrender of their trust, does ,the
greatest and most flagrant wrong to the officer who presIdes over this
Institution. This 08i.cer has devoted eleven years of the best portion
of his life, and all his time and all his talents during that period, to
the service of the Bank: he has, at all ~imes, consulted freely with the
Directors, and has never sought to make his" single will" the law of
the Bank. The proofs of the ability arid integrity of his administra·
tion, are to be read in the prosperity and strength of the Institution;
in the reiterated approbation of t,he stockholders; and in the unwavering confidence of the !luccessive Boards of Directors, who have been
the witnesses of his labors. Arid the' Committee confidently believes
that such proofs can never be obliterated by such sweeping declarations, let them emanate from what source they may.
. The fourth is in the following passage:
"The expenditures purporting to have been made under authori.
" tyof these resolutions, during the years 1831 and 1852, were about
" 80,000 dollars."
This, too, is another mis-statement. The expenditures purporting
to be made under these resolutions during the years 18S1 and 18S2
were, as will be explained in this report, exactly $48,287 90.
The fifth is, "That publications have been prepared and extensively
circulated containing the grossest invectives against the officers of the
Government; and the money which belongs to the stockholders and
to the public. has been freely applied in efforts to degrade. in public estimation, those who were supposed to he instrumental in resist·
ing the wishes of tbis grasping and dangerous Institution." "
"The fact has been recently disclosed, that an unlimited discretion
has been, and is now, vested in the,President of the Bank to expend
its funds in payment for preparing and circulating articles, and purchasing pamphlets and newspapers,wcalculated by their contents to
operate on elections and secure a renewal of its charter."
Here ate two mistakes: It is not true that- any "publications have been prepared and extensively circulated containing the
grossest invectives against the officers of the Government." Nor is
it true that any power is vested in the President" for preparing and
circulating articles, and purchasing pamphlets and newspapers, calcu.

lated by their contents to operate on elections and secure a renewal of
itlPcharter." No such, power is given, and no such power is exercised.
The power actually given which has been exercised, and wHl cootinue to be exercised; is for the defence, of the Bank against the calum~
nies with which for fopr years, the institution has been pursued.
The sixth is,
"The fact that the Bank controls, and iii some cases substantially
'owns-and by its money supports. some of the leading presses of the
country, is now more dearly understood."
This whole allegation is denied. '
The Bank does not now control, and never did control any
press whatever-the Bank does not own, and never did own
any press-the Bank does not now support, nor did it ever support,
by its money, any press. ' Created for the purpose of ~viJlg aid to
every bran eli of industry, it has not presumed to proscnb~ the conductors of the press from their share of the accommodation due to
their capital and industry~ Of'the extent and the security of these
loans the Directors claim the exclusive privilege of judging.
The course of this inquiry has now brought the Committee to the
second paper referred to them by the Board sill'ned by the Government Directors. It appears from their report ti:at the President of
the United States addt'essed a letter to them, "directing them to
examine and report upon the expense account of the Bank of the
United States for the Ijst two years." II-nd particularly "that portion which embraced e~enditures calculated to operate on the election"-which examination they state "undoubtedly present' circumstances which in our opinion warrant the belief you have been
le~ to entertain." This assertion of a right in the President of the
United States to inquire into the expenses of the Bank, with a view
to ascertain whether any money was expended which might directly
or, indirectly interfere with his own personal election, is alike novel
and untenable. His authority. as we have seen, is limited to the
power of issuing a scire facias. Buf in no part of the charter of the
Bank. in no law of this country is there found any power in the
President to interfere in the internal concerns of the institution, or
to direct secret investigations. But that which they regard with
surprise and regret is. tllat these Directors. having such a commission to execute from the President, never communicated the fact to
their colleagues nor to the Officen of the Bank; and while these
Officers were giving to them the freest and most unreserved accells·
to all the books and papers of the Bank, and while their colleagues
were sitting in perfect confidence by their sides. neither those Officers
, nor the Directors had the remotest suspicion of this official investigation into th~ir conduct, begun ntarty two months before under orders
• of the Presidellt.:...until the] read it in the newspapers. When at the
meeting of th& Board, after Jts publication. the subject was introduced,
one of the Government Directors iii eWect acknowledged that they had
purposely concealed their object, lest if their colleagues had been
aware or it, they would not have permitted it. What the Committee

deem therefore a subject of just complaint, is the want of candour
in thus trying their colleagues, witbout apprising them that they
were on triaf, or giving them any chance of knowing or answerinl
the charges madeagaiust them by the President.
The report itselrbears manifest evidence of the haste with which
it was prepared. Thus" we proceeded," say they, "to look into
such of the vouchers on wbich they are founded as we had time and
opportunity to do." They state that they would have sent copies'of
these vouchers, but, "the time and labour necessary for this mode
would bave prevented our resoi'tin~ to it at pre,ent." When the
truth'is, that a few hours of tranquIl industry would have enabled
them to copy every word of these vouchers.
~in tlie! say, "we were obliged to depend on our otDn partial
in9ulries." The errors oC this hasty and partial enquiry the Co.
mittee will now proceed to notice.
lst. The first impression attempted to be made is that, whatever
is here stated 'are discoveries of things hitherto concealed, and which
now see the light in consequence of their exertioDs. Thus they
'speak of the expenditures .. diBcovered by UB," and of their "mve,ltgations," that they requested a fl8.rticular statement from the
Board, which ., request was not complied with," and that they were
"obliged to depend on their own partial inquiries." And, finally,
they say with an air of despondency h we must inf~r from the' course
pursued by tbe Board when our resolutions were submitted to them,
that a more exact statement can only be obtained by an agent directly
authorised by the Executive-" Nothing can be more erl'oneOUI than
luch an impression. No one concealed-no one desired to concealno one could conceal this whole matter. The resolutions of the Board
were on the minutes-the expenses under them were all recorded in
a book, the vouchers aU referred to by number in that book; and all
of them-minutes-expense book and vouchers were always to be
seen and examined by the Directors,-so that the whole process of
discovery was to ask for the books and vouchel'S, and to receive them.
In the same spirit, they remark that, .. the expense account, as made
up in the book which was submitted to ·us, contained very little information relative to the particularB of this expenditure, and we were
obliged, in order to obtalb them, to reBort
an inBpection of the
'Douchers." What did these Directors expect in an expense book ~
This book contains the name of the party, the sum paid, and tbe
number of the voucher which supports it; and the vouclier is at hand
to verify it. If they meant that each item of each. account should be
copied into this expense book! they mean that which no expense account eyer did contain, Ot ever ou~ht to contain; and the objection
shows only tbe spirit in which the mquiry was conducted.
2d. Another effort is to make it agpear that these expenditurel were
exclu8ively at the Bank in Philadef'phia, leaving of course the inference open, that the Elxpenditures at the Branches might be in the
same proportion. " All expenditures of this kind, say the Committee,
introduced into tbe expense 'lecount, and discovered by us, we found
to be, 80 far as regards the. inBtitution in thiB city, embraced under the
head of ltationary and printing."


Now tbe truth is, tbat tbese expenses were not confined to Phil.del·
pbia, but embraced all the United States. Tbe expense book showed,
and the vouchers proved, tbat these expenditures were made in various
and remote parts of tbe Union-a fact too appareilt to escape immediate ohservation.
Sd. The next misrepresen~ation is this. After quoting the resolutions, they proceed-" In purllUance, it is preaumed, of theae relJO.
lutioru, the item of stationary and printing was increased, during the
'first half of the year 1881; to the enonnoau sum of $29,979 92."
Now it appears on the very face of tbe expense account, tbat t~e increase to this ~ sum, so far from having been occasioned by
these resolutions, was caused by tbe purchase of large quantities of
paper alId engravings for bank notes, and by the supply of common
stationlU'Y for, the Bank.
The enormous sum in question was
This consisted of th~ following itemsCommon Stationary,
11080 82
'448 76,
Printing blank forms and rules,
267 68
179 91
4178 37
Engraving bank notes,
300 00
2886 67
Silk for making paper,
1421 94
Sheeting for do.
2121 64
Silks for
788 13
Silks for
do.' .
Subscription to the Cotree House,
$13,678 42,
Printing and circulating- Mr. Gal$3941 23
latin's book on Banking,
Do. Smith aod M'Duffie,
2512 06
Reviews and Address to legislatures,
'9848 21
and miscellaneous items,
---$16,501 50
So that this enormous increase was occasioned in a great degree by
having a new se,t of bank notes prepared and engraved, amounting to
$11,696 75-and moreover, nearly one half of this enormous increase
has no relation to the expenses to which it is meant to ascribe it.
4th. The next is, that among the expenditures noted, is one of
$1447 75, for printing" agreeably to order and letter from John Sergeant, Esq." The gratuitous introduction of the name of this gentle:man is obviously designed to connect his agency with some political
purpose. But there is not the slightest foundation for it.
The fact itself. was known to the Committee of Investigation in 1852, Rnd although urged to make the same use of it 88 is
now attempted, they had too much 'flanse of justice to employ it.
The truth is this. Early in the year 1831, while Mr. Sergeant was a
member oftbe Board of Directors, he received a letter from Mr. Wilson,

a respectable printer, in Steubenville, proposing to .reprint the reports
of Me~sr8. Smith and M'Duilie, about the Bank. Mr. Sergeant pre.
sented the letter to the officer of the Bank, who was cbarged by the
Board with the multiplication of these reporta, and was requested by
bim to apprize Mr. Wilson, that he might print a certain number of
copies. He did so. In sending his account, as he had not communicated with any officer of the Balik, he referred to his authority to do
the work, as having come through Mr. Sergeant, and thus the receipt
stands. So that the whole agency of Mr. Sergeant was to answer an
application to him as a Director, from a printer, to print some reports of
committees of Congress, 'and otber documents on tbe conc~rns of the
5th. The next is, the effort to make it appear that air the expenses
reported, had been to inftuenc.e public elections. This is not
expressly asserted, but' it is so stated as inevitably to convey that im·
pression. Tbus they say, .. We deemed it expedient at present to
confine our investigations to that portion which embraced ezpenditure8
calculated to qperate on the electionB. All u:pendituru of thia kind,
. introduced into the expense account and discovered by us, we found to
~, W 'far as regards the Institution in this city, embraced under the
head of stationary and printing. To it, therefolre, we chiefly directed," &e. &c.
Then follows a list of expense8 all of which it is intended to repre·
sent as. calculated to influence elections. Thus in the case just cited,
they proclaim the enormous sum of '29,979 92, which they pre8ume
to have been expended in pu~suance of the resolutions, and of course as
baving a bearing on elections. Now we have just seen, that of this whole
~9,OOO, more than 'IS,OOO were for bank' notes and miscellaneous
stationary; that 'S,941 23 was for Mr. Gallatin's book on currency,
which could have no possible connection with elections; that '2,500
were for reprinting Mr. M'Duffie's and General Smith's reports, which
Congress itself had reprinted in unusual numbers, and that of'tbe
whole remaining sum of'lO,OOO for miscellaneous expenses, none
could be spent on elections, from the simple fact that in this first half
year of 18S1, no elections of any kind in which the Bank could, by
any possibility, have. an interest, were impending for eighteen months
to come, or even in remote agitation; yet this report would convey, to
the majority of readers. the belief that the whole of the '29,000 were
lavished upon elections.
But the most signal error is reserved for the last.
They say" it appears by the expense account of the Bank for the
years 18S1 and 1832, that upwards of 880,000 were expended and
charged under the head of stationary and printing during that period, and that a large pruportion of this was paid to the proprietors
of newspapers and periodical journals; and for the printing, distribution and postage of immense numbers of pamphlets and newspapers," &c. Now it is true that the eXJlense of printing and stationary for those two years was upwards of '80,000, but by u8in~ tile
vague phrases of a "large portion" and " immense number8,'. the
impression conveyed to the mind is, thllt the whole, or nearly the

. whole. of this amount must bave ~en dillbuned for the object to
which the President objects; and accordingly the President, in biB
paper, states in so many words, that" the expenditures }lufllOrting'
to have been made under authority of these resolutions, aunng the
years 18S1 and 1852, were about $80,000," and thus the mi,-statement insinuated in the report, becomes declared in the manifesto.
Now these Directors must havejerceived that of these tso,OOO,
There were paid for making an printing bank notes $24,591 96
For printing blank forms ana other necesury papers,
1,848 08
For books and stationary,
6,055 88
655 25
For vari~us miscellaneous expense.,


Making a tOtal of
ts5.59S 76
So that at once more than thirty-three thousand dollars of the eighty
thousand are shown. to have no connection whatever with the matter of this reproach.
It is moreover to be obse"ed that the Committee of investigation'
of 18S2, exa.Dined the subject-had this very expense. book 6efore
them-remark in meir report the increase of the expense of printing,
but it may be presumed that neither they. nor any other authority.
till no!, thought su~h a subjeCt worthy of being pursued..
.Havmg thus exposed the era:ors of thiS report. the CommIttee will
briefly state the facts in regard to these disbursements.
The course adopted by the Bank has been simple, plain, and
avowed. It is this:
The Bank of the United States, like every other Bank, derives
much of its advantqes (rom its credit, and its general reputation for
solvency; and the Directors are, therefore, bound by official as well
. as personal considerations to remove unfounded prejudices, and to
repel injurious calumnies on the Institution entrusted to their care .
5Ioon after the first message to Congress, issued by the signer of
the present paper, it became necessary to counteract the schemes
for the destruction of the Bank by the ditrusion of intelligence
among the people. Acc?rdingly, the following resolutions have been
adopted by the Board.
On the 50th of November, 1850. "The President submitted to
the Board a copy of an article on Banks and Currency, just published in the American Quarterly Review of this city. containing a
favourable notice of this Institution, and suggested the expediency of
making the views of the author more extenSively known to the public than they can be by means of the subscription list-whereupon
. it was on motion.
" Resolved, That the President be authorized to take such measures
in regard to the circulation of the contents' of the said article, either
in the whole or in part, as he may deem most for the interest of the
On the 11th of March, 1851, "The President stated to the Board,
that in consequence of the general desire expressed by the Directors
at one of theil- meetings of the last year, subsequent to the adjournment of Congress, and a verbal understanding with the Board.




measures had been taken by him in the course of that year, for
printing numerous copies of the Reports of General Smith and Mr.
M'Duffie, on the subject of this Bank, and for widely disseminating
their contents through the United States; and that he had since, by
virtue of the authority given him by a resolution of this Board, moAted on the 30th day of November last, caused a large edition of M'r.
Gallatin's Essay on Banks and CurrencI' to be published and circulated in like manner, at the expense 0 the Bank. He suggested,
at the same time, the expediency and propriety of extending still more
widely a knowledge of the concerns of this Institution, by means of
the rep,ublication of other. valuable articles, which had issued from
the dady and periodical press.
" Whereu..P'!n, it was, on motion,
"Resolved, That the Presidentis hereby authorised to cause to be
prepareCl and circulated, such documents and papers as may com-

municate to the tJ.eorJle in/ormation in regard to the nature anaoperations of the BaM.'~

AI).d finally on the 16th of August, 1833, the following resolution:

"Resolved, That the Board have confidence in the wisdom and
integrity of the President, and in the propriety of the resolutions of
the 30th of November, 1830, and 11th of March, 1831-and entertain a full conviction of the necessity of a renewed attention to the
objects of the resolutions; and that the President be authorised and
requested to continue his exertions for the promotion of said objects."
The resolutions of 1830 and 1831, were passed openly and unanimously by the Board, the two Government Directors who attended
concurring in them; and they have been carried into effect without
the least reserve or secrecy. The form of the resolution was the
same as that adopted on a Iandred subject-the arrest of counterf~t­
ers-a. short time previous, on the 25th of October, 1830.
,. Resolved, That the President of this Bank be authorized to take
whatever measures he may think proper for the discovery and arrest
of counterfeiters of the notes and drafts, and to incur such expenses
from time to time in effecting that object as he may deem useful o\'

The expenses incurred, as stated in the expense account, in executing these resolutions, from December 1829, when the first assault
was made on the Bank by the President, to the present time, running
through the years 1829, 1830, 1831, 1832 and 1833, amount to
858,265 05, inaking an average for the last four years of814,583 76
a year.
During that period, the total expenses under the head of printing and
statlOnary, amounted to
8105,057 73
Of which, the proportion for the defence of the Bank
858,265 04
And for the miscellaneous expenses of
books and stationary,
46,792 69
- - - 8105,057 73


This Will be seen more perspicuously in the following statement:




Speechel in Conr;:ss,
Printing and circulating and other miscel e·
ous publications.
Reports to Congrefl&

S5,085 67
2,650 97
4,S95 63
SI2,132 27

S 2,291


Books and

S 6,704


So, that the general result is, that within four years past the Bank.
has been obliged to incur an expense of S58,000 to defend itself
against injurious misrepresentations.
This has been done with regret that it should be necessary,
but witb the strongest conviction of ita propriety, and without the
slightest wish either to disavow or to conceal it. On the contrary,
the Bank asserts its clear,right to defend itself equally against those
wbo circulate false statements, and those who circulate false Dotes.
Its sole object, in eitber case, is self· defence. It cannot suffer itself
to be calumniated down, and the interests confided to its care sacrificed by falsehoods. A war of unexampled violence has been waged
against tbe Bank. The Institution defends itself. Its assailants are
wnat are called politicians; and when statements which they cannot
answer, are presented. to the country, they reproach the Bank with
interfering in politics. "As these assaults, too, are .made at the period of public elections, the answers of the Bank must of course follow at the same time;~nd thus, because these politicians assail the
Bank on the eve of elections, unless the Iostitutlon stands mute, it is
charged with interfering in politics, and inft.uencing elections. The
Banlt has never interfered in tbe slightest degree in politics, and
never inft.uenced or sought to inft.uence elections; but it will not be
deterred by the menaces or clamors of politicians, from executing its
duty in defending itself. Of the time and manner and degree and
expense connectea with tbis service, the Board of Directors claim
to be the sole and exclusive judges. Whether the defence is too costl.r. is for the Stockholders, whose interests are sustained by it, to deCide; but certainly, the assailants thems.elves have no rigtit to complain of the expenses they have occasioned. Their own duty in the
full proportion which may be needed for defending the Institution
entrusted to them, the Board of Directors will cheerfully anlo! zeal·
ously perform.
The Committee conclude this examination by offering, a~ the result of their reft.ections, the following resolution:-

Re8olved, That the removal of the public funds from the Bank of
the United States, under. the circumstances, and in the manner in
which it has been effected, is a violation of the contract between the
Government and the Bank-and that the President be instructed to
present a memorial to Congress, requesting that l'edres8 should be
aWorded for the wrong which has been done to the Institution.



NOVBKBBB 5, 1833.

Permit me to IiSk your particular attention to a draft for S500,OOO, in favor
of the Cashier of the Girard Bank, which has been brought into your account
transmitted by this day's mail.
The uniform practice has been for the Treasurer to. transmit to the Bank a
weekly statement of the drafts drawn by hin1 on the Bank and its Offices. This
statement in its terms purports to be, and has always been deemed to be, a
complete list of all the drafts on the Bank,-so well understood was this, that
when an omissidn was brought to yllbl' notice by my predecessor.. you answered on the 15th August 1829, explaining that the omission was accidental, and
adding "I now beg leave to enclose a statement of the transfers referred to,
" and will cause you fo be properly notified of such as may be directed here" after." Nevertheless, a draft' for glOO,OOO on the Office of this Bank in
;Baltimore in favor of the Union Bank of Maryland, and a draft on this Bank,
also in favor of :the Union Bank of Maryland. for a like sum of $100,000, of
which drafts no mention was made in the lists transmitted to the Blink, have
been presented and paid.-On Satul'filay the 2d inst. this draft for Z50O,OOO
in favor of the Cashier of the Girard Bank, was presented, although since the
date of this draft nearly a month had elapsed, and we have l'Cceived from you
five lists of drafts in which this was .not mentioned, yet it has been paid from a
desire to doall honor to any thing which bears your signature. But the appearance in succession of these large drafts withont being notified jn your l~ts
which embrace the minutest sums, makes it necessary for the security of the
Bank, to rece,ive your instructions in regard to them. Will you therefore have
the goodness to inform me whether it is your desire that these lists shan serve
as a. guide to the Bank, to be treated as letters of advice of the d.·afts, and a security against the payment of those not recognized by you, or whether
you authorise the payment of drafts bearing your signature, although you do
not advise the Bank of their having been issued' I am, 8tc.
S. JAUDON, Cashier.
JOHN CAKPBBLL, Esq., TrtlUUrer of the United Statu, ·Washington.

NOVItlllDXB 8th, .1833.

I have received your letter of the 5th inst. calling my attentioll to the fact of
certain Treasury drafts having been paid at the Bank of the United States and
its Office at Baltimore, the issuing of which had not been notifi ed to the Bank
in the weekly statement.
The general practice in the Office of furnishing to the Bank, at the close of
each week, a statement of the drafts and warrants on it and its Offices, issued
during the week, is readily acknowledged, a pl"actice which I found in operation when I entered the Treasury, and adopted by ,the department, I presume,
as a mere matter of convenience to the Hank in settling its account with its
branches, and with this Office, and not of security to the Bank as YOll have sup-


posed. Deeiroul to atrord every facility to the Bank in ita transactiOlll with
thiI Office, which it had received from my predecessor, I had no heai.tation in
saying, upon being informed that the transfer drafts had heen omitted in the
weekly statements, that the former practice should be continued. The drafts
in que.uon however were not of the usual kind, and did not properly belong
to the us\Ull weekly statement. They were issued by direction of the Secretary of the Treasury, to be used in the event of certain contingenciea, upon failure of which they'were to be returned to the Treasury and cancelled. Had
they been inserted in the Weekly Statement, they would have led at once to a
dechtction from the Treasu~r'saccount, when it was hoped and expected that
the occasion might not"arise for presenting them for payment. Upon presenting them for this purpose, the Banka, in whose favour they 'were drawn, were
instructed to give immediate notice to this office, in order that they might be
inserted in the weekly statements. This you will find was accordingly done,
by referring to the statement of the 12th ultimo. At what time the practice
of furnishin~ the weekly statements originated, I am not able to say, but the
only use which appeared to be ~de of them was to enable the Bank to keep
up its aggregate account, with the Treasurer and the Branches as before stated.
That they could not have been intendeCl .. to serve as letters of advice of the
drafts, or as forming a atmf'i'y to the Bank, against those not recognised by the
Treasurer,:' jl evident from the fact (ai\(lng others) thatthe drafts reported in
it. being issued on any day in the week, and the statement not seJlt until the
close of the business em Saturday, must in most cases have been presented and
paid before the statement came to hand. It was nev.ertheless not intended to
take the Bank by surprise. The holders as I understand were requested to ap.
prise the Bank of their having contingent drafts upon it, and have in fact been
m communication with the Banlt on the subject. From tbis statement you will
readily perceive, that there was no disposition to Withhold from the Bank any
information that had been usual, or was considered necessary for the convenience of the Bank. The infonnation was not considered necessary as notice to
the Bank at the time the drafts were issued, and the oftice had provided the
means, and was in tlie course of furnishing the information in time to answer
the only purpose for which it was believed to have been used. The only dni.fts
now out. of the contingeut character above atated, and which have not been
introduced into the weekly statement&, are three drafts for 1S500,OOO each, on
the Branch in New York in favour of the Bank of America, Meclumica Bank and
the Manhattan Company, all of York. In the course of next week, I shall be
able to inform you whether they are intended to be used, or to be returned to
this office. If they are presented by the proper officer of the respective Banks
above stated, they will, I hope be honoured, and if they are returned I shall
immediately advise you of it. The occasion which was supposed to make drafts
of this description proper having now passed, I am instructed by the Secretary
of the Treasury to mform you, that no drafts will be issued but such as are intended to be presented and paid. These will be included in the weekly statements as usual. Whether the drafts which may be presented are genuine or
not. or payment demanded by the person lawfully authorized to receive it, you
.must on all occasions as heretofore decide for yourself, on your own responsibility. I am, very respectfully sir, your obediel,lt servant,
JOHN CAMPBELL, Treasurer United States.
S. .JAUItOlf, Esq., Cashier BankUnited States.


Non.... 15th, 1833.

I have had the pleasure of' rc:ceivingyour letter of the 8th instant. in
which you inform me that the drafts were issued bYlou without the accustomed notice to the Bank, becaule they .. were not 0 the usual kind," and

were co issued by the direction of the Secretary of the TreaSury, to be uHd in
.. the event of certain continrnclet."
Without feeling myself disposed or authorized to ..y any thing as to the
general character of these drat'ta, 1 am constrained to recur to the lubject for
the purpose of apprizing 'ou that IUch draf'tI are 10 entirely at nrianc:e with •
the present inltructions 0 the TreaIury, that it hal becbme neceuary, as well
for the Treasury as·for the Bank, either to discontinue the practice of drawing
without notice, or else to make the inltructions conform to It.
In my letter of the 5th instant 1 brought-to your notice the fact of the omillioll of the draf\s on the weekly .tatementl, because the drat'ti being drawn on
diltant parta of the eltablishment, cDuld only be known to the Bank at Philadelphia by your weekly ltatementl, and because the supprelllion from these
weekly lists of drafts outstanding for many weeki seem to require that lOme
explanation mould be requested. Your reply tha~ it Was not neceaary to
notice these as a matter of security to the Bank, because the drafta draWl) in
the course of the week might be presented before the list sent at the end of the
week could reach the Bank, is undoubtedly true. The weckly listl are for the
general information or the Bank. but you are perfectly aware that, in order to
supply this very deCect in the weekly ltatementa, and for the very e~resl Pm.'"
pOle of giving a notice cotemporaneoUi with the draft itself, you furnIsh tJ dtdIy
&1 to the Bank, and to every Branch drawn upon,
the drafts drawn upon
them respectively on tAaI _, and this with the. avowed specified object of
auarding the Bank against frauds. Your circular and" confidential" letter to
the Calhier of the Bank, and to the Calhiel'l of all the Branche., i. in these
.. Tretutwy of til, United SlIlte., Junt 234, 1829.
" SIll
"In compllance with instructions of the Secretary of the Treasury un. '
der date of the 22d inatant, I have the honour to inform you that tJ daily lill,
to commence with the 26th instant, will be tl"lUlsmitted to you by this office of
the warrants that may be directed during the day to your institution for payment. B;Itt beI#ml tlurl tTail metJIUJ'e u i:akulatid to pre1HMI frauda uJIOfI tM
Btmla; and tJ8 (J pneautitm agaiml ill falling into improper 1uirub, the list will
not be accompllDied by any letter or explanatory remark, but will merely contain the number of the warrant, whether on account ufthe Treasury, War, or
Navy Department, the runne of the party in whose favour it is drawn, and the
amount. I am. veryrespectCully, your obedient servant, ,
Tretuurer of the United Statu."
YOII will readily perceive that according to this letter the Treasury, in order
to prevent buda upon the Bank, gives a daily list of drafts daily drawn, and for
fear this very daily list mi~ht be perverted, it was framed in a particular man.
ner, 10 as not to be intelll$1ble if it fell into improper hands.
The officel'l to whom thIS letter was addressed naturally presumed that thia,
daily and confidentially communicated, was to serve as a guide and check on
the drafts themselves, and the Treasury ....JUI apprised that no drafts should be
paid unless they were on these lists. Of this fact the files of the Treasury furnish this illustration. The Cashier of the Branch at New York wrote to the
Secretary of the Treasury on the 12th of April, 1830.
"I beg leave to call ~-our attention to the advice of drafts from the Treasury
.. on this Branch. The following were presented lOme days since, and payment
" refused for want of advice, viz:
.. War: 586,
John Riddle
7,S7'1 S6
do. ,
752 12
do. ,
" .~n those advised on the 7th· and 8th instant are without the names of the


"partie, to whom they were given, and no discrimination as to army or navy.
" I shall in future refuse to pay in every case where advice is not given.
. I have the honour to be, your o\ledient servant,
M. ROBINSON, Cuhier.
, .. Hon. S. D. INGHAM, 8eeretory o/the TI'tIUfJf"!/, WaMi.nguml'
This letter was referred to YOll by the Secretary, and in your ans\\'er, dated
the 17th of April, 1830, you say_CO Your refusal to pay the Warrants is conli•• dered quite proper.
The inconvenience which the parties may have
.. incurred from it is indeed much to be regretted, but a payment without
." advice would be upon tlle responsibility of the Bank."
You cannot fail to perceive the embal'1'll88lllent to which the relations be-tween the Treasury and the Bank are now subjected-and the example of the
Branch at New York is worthy of special attention. YOIl have been sending to
that Branch a daily list professing to give a description of every draft drawn
upon the Branch on that day. The Cashier receives this and confides in it.
He has already refused to pay drafts not on that list and ,the Treasury has directed him to refuse in future, Yet it now appears that while his rlaily list contains the most trifling sums, there are drawn upon him three checks of S500,OOO,
-each without any, the least notice of them on either the daily list or the weekly
list.. The consequence is that had they been presented a week ago, the payment of them would necessarily have been refused and the Treasury draft have
been dishonoured in consequence of the Treasury instructions. They would
be dishonored now, but that in order to give every facility to the business of
the Treasury, the Cashier was by me apprised of them' and authorized to pay
them after the receipt of your letter. You further state that "the holders of
.. the drafts were requested to apprise the Bank of their having contingent
u drafts "pon it-and' have in fact been in communication with the Bank upon
.. the subJect;" and you add, that "from this statement you will readily peru ceive that there was no disposition to withhold from tile Bank any informa•• tion that bad been usual, or w~ considered necessary for the convenience ~f
" the Bank.'~
. I am perfectly satisfied that you would never consent to any thing calculated
to mislead or to deceive the Bank, and yet you cannot, T think, fail to perceive
to how many difficulties this statement is exposed. YOIl observe that" there
was no disposition to withhold from the Bank any information that had been
usual." Yet the weekly lists were usual-the daily lists were not only usualbut were declared by the Treasury itself indispensable. Yet these were withheld. You furtliel' remark that the holders of the drafts were requested to
apprize the Bank of their existence. If so, the Treasury must have thought it .
necessary that the Bank should be informed of it, and the question naturallyoccurs, why should not that information have been given in the usual and regular
way, rather than leave it to the uncertain compliance with a request by the
holder ot the drafts, for it appears by the report of the Cashier of the Branch in
New York, that he has received no notice ofthe existence of these outstand·
ing drafts except through me.
I am the less' surprised at their omission, since even with the disposition
which you have yourselfmarlifested to communicate accurate information to
the Bank, one of these very drafts seems to have escapt't\ your own notice.
Thus in your letter of the 8th inst. you state that" the only drafts now out of
.. the contingent character above st.'1ted, and which have not been introduced
.. into the \lCeekly statements, Ilre three drafts for ~500.000 each on the
"Branch, in New York." Now on the 4th inst. a draft for $100,000 on the
Branch in Baltimore was paid, bearing date the 4th of October. Of this drl\ft
no advice has ever yet been received from you in the weekly list. Allow me
then to repeat my request that if these daily anu'weckly statements are to be
continued, they may be rendered, what they profess to be-acclIrate accounts
on which the Bank may rely in the arrsngements of its business, .
Very respectfully, your obedient sPrvant,
S. JAUDON, Cashier.
JOIl:a' CAXPlIJ:LL, Esq., Treasurer United States, Washington.

NovE.BBB 25, 1833.
• Sla,
Your letter of the 15th instant, in reply to mine of the 8th, in relation to
certain Transfer Drafts, which were issued, as I had informed you, in compliance with the instructions of the Secretary of the Treasury, f received in due
A desire that the transactions of this Office with the Bank may be correctly
understood, and that certain communications of mine to which your letter has
had reference, may be more fully explained, which I perceive have been en- •
tirely misapprehended, induce me to trouble you with this reply. You inform
me that "such drafts are, ao entirely at variance with the pTeaent ifUltructi(JIUJ
.. of the Treasury, tbat it has Become necessary, as well for the Treasury as for
"the Bank, either to discontinue the practice of drawing without notice, or else
.. to make the instructions conform to it:" and rou refer me to a letter of mine
of the 23d of June, 1829, communicating certain mstNctions of the Secretary
of the Treasury, requiring daily lists of the" w A.BBAlJTS directed to the Bank for
payment during the day, as the instructions of the Treasury which have not
been complied with by not furnishing a,list of certain TaA.lJ8ua D'aUTS. A
ref~rence to those instructions cannot fail to disclose to you that you have entirely misunderstood them. What are they 1 They are that "a daily list will
" be transmitted to you by this office, of the w A.aaA. NTS that may be directed
"during the day to your Institution for payment." Nothing is said in these instructions of furnishing a daily list ofTaA.]Js1'Ba DRAI!TS~
It surely is not necessal'y for me to point out to you the manifest difference
between a warrant with the, Treasurer's order, annexed to it, directed to the
Bank fOD payment of money out of the Treasury, and a transfer draft issued by
the order of the' Secretary to transfer public, funds from one Bank to another.
There never have been any imtructi(JIUJ from the Treasury requiring me to furnish daily lists of tTamfer draft., they never have been included in a Bingle ifl1IttJ.nU, in ,the daily lists of warTantB, that have been directed during the day for
The Transfer Drafts are included in the weekly statements, not to guard the
Bank against fi-auds, as you have supposed, but for the pw-pose of geneml information in regulating the Treasurer's aggregate account with the Bank and
its branches. You proceed to state however, that I must be "perfectly aware
.. that to supply this defect in the weekly statement, and for the e:I:pnB8 pUTpose
" of giving a notice contemporaneous with the draft itself, a daily list is furnish"ed to the Bank and every Branch drawn on, of the drafts drawn upon them
" respectively on that day, and that with the avowed specified purpose of guard&< ing the Bank against frauds."
How can the daily list of WaTTanU be intended
for lIuch a purpose ill relation to transfer drafts, when the transfer drafts are
nuver included in it, and when no daily lists of transfel' drafts have ever been
The drafts alluded to were not included in the usual weekly statements, for
the reasons stated in my last letter. It was not known certainly whether they
would be presented and paid, or returned to the Department and cancelled.
It was therefore lJItught the most correct course, not to include them in
the amount drawn for during the week by this office, until it was known
they were to be paid: and the holders were directed to give the proper informati(\n to the Treasury, if the draft~ were intended to be used. If they
had been included in the amount drawn for during the week, and not paid, an
erroneous exliibition of the Treasurer's Account would have been the consequence.
It was satisfactorily shown in my letter of the 8th, that the practice of furnishing week/.v reports to the Bank, of the drafts drawn on it and its Btanches
during the week, being anterior to my entrance into the Treasury, was continued as a matter of convenience to the Bank, for general informat~on, and not

as required -by any Treasury instruction., IU1d that the modriD which the con·
tingent drafts were intended to be reported in theae stattmlent., 11'81 auitable to

tbe character and object of these statements. The queltion therefore 11011'

remaining, seems only to be, wh\,ther it 11'81 usual, or wu required by the
Treasury inltructiom, for the Treuurer to give daily or contemporaneoul DOtice of the Tranlfer Drafts t9 the Bank or Branche. on which they were
To this quem!)n the negative can be confidently affirmedIn the circuJar letter frOm this oftice of 23d June 1829, written by direction
of the Secretary of the Treasury, and quoted by you at lenfil\, the Bank. are
informed, that a daily list will be" transmitted to them oft,4e lftI7'NJFIU tAatmay
" be direded to them duri~ Me day fur paYIMllt," which list to prevent its being
used in case it should fallmto improper hand., .. will merely contain the num.. ber of the warrant, whether on account of $e Treasurr., War, or Navy
.. Department, the name of the party in whose favour It is drawn, and
.. the amount." It was on Warrants designated as War Warrants that
the Branch at New York refuted to make payment without advice,
and not Transfer Drafts, and the refusal to pay the warrant, I of courae approved, as the Dotice in such case was required by the regulation. of the Treasury. If any ~oubt remained upon thilsuhject, the history of these Warrants
willlufticiently shew the practice of the office in this respect, and the perfect
underatanding of. it on the part of the Branch Bank at New York, for on
the day that the Cllllhier refused to pay the warrant for want of notice, he
paid Transfe. Draft No. 9' for !200,ooo, without notice, and three days after Transfer Draft No. 96 for 100,000 dollara without notice.
I need scarce add that the failure to report draft No. 541, tor 100,000 dollar&, on,the Baltimore Office, in the Statement of the 9th inst., was,an omission
of the Clerk. It was nevertbeleSSl not" outstanding" at the time my letter wu
written, baving been paid on the 40th, and doubtless immediately reported to
The charter of the Bank of the United States hu given to the Secretary of
the Treasury the ·sole power of ordering trflft8fer. of th~ public funds from
place to flaee, for the convenience of the public service, and he of course must
judge 0 their necelllity and legality. It would therefore be out of place in me
to offer any observations as to the character of the drafts to which some allusion has been made. He is responsible to the nation for the proper exercise of
this power, and of courae cannot be controlled in it by any officer of the Treasury 01' of the Bank, as I conceive. The charter of the Bank provides "that
" whenetJer required by the 8et:retary of the Tretmsry, the ssid corporation shall
.. give the necessary facilities for tranlferring the public funds from p/aa to .
, .. place within the United States 01' th~ Territories thereof, and for distribut.. ing the same in payment of the public creditora." The form in which this
power, thus confided to the Secretary, is to be carried into effect, he has prescribed in his'instrulltions to th~ Bank of May 28th, 1829, and were accordingly
communicated to all the Banks in wbich there were public funds. These in.
structions are as follow:
" When transfera are to be made of public funds &om one bank to another,
.. the Treasurer will issue a transfer draft upon the banll'Wl which the funds
" may be at his credit in favor of the Bank to which they .are to be transf~rred,
I I for the amount required, stating that it i, to be placed to his credit in s!Jch
"Bank. This draft will be recorded by the Register, who will alithpnticate
" the record by his signature upon the draft, and will finally receive the writ" len ,anction of the Suretory oJ'the T_ry."
TIle Transfel' Draft signed by the Treasurer, Register and Secretary in pursuance of these inm"Uctions. is the form prescribed by the Secretary for carrying
into effect the power confided to his discretion of. ordering transfers of-the
public funds from place to place. It was adopted to give authenticity to the
order, and to enable the Treasurer to render an accurate' accolmt of the state

Digrtized by


of the public fwlis ilol the Bank and its Branches, and not in consequeilCe of
AU _iflK ooy dilcretion or r.tmJroI_ tAe.IUld«t. Be-bas therefore rigidly
and strictly conformed to all the- instructioml given by the Secretary of the
Treasury on this 8Ubje~ and whenever he shall direct that daily notices of
Tramler Draft. as well as of WtJrf'tIftt8, shall be transmitted to the Banks by
this Office, diose instructions .ba1l with great pleasure be complied with on
my part, but until such instructions are given, the practice of this OtJice will be
continued as heretofore.
When disbursements of money are to be made out of the Treasury, the law
bas pointed out the duties of the Treasurer. Such. disbursements are to be
made alone upon theeWarrant of the Secretary of the Treasury, countersigned
by the Comptroller, and recorded and authenticated by the signature of the
Refister; and by the rerIations of the .Treasury of the 28th of May, 1829,
wIlich were also communicated to all the Banks in which there were public deposits, the Treasurer is required to write
order for the payment of the money upon the Warrant. And by another regulation the Treasurer is required
to transmit to the Bank a daily liIIt of the WtJrf't1ftt8 thus directed during the
day. to the Bank for payment. These regulation. have been~ and will continue to be uniformly complied with.
I am very respectfully. sir, your obedient servant.
Treasurer of the United States.
S •. J.U1DOlll". Esq,.
CQlllaier of tl&e Banlc of tke United BIDIu,


DBCB• • B. 9th, 1833.


lIy absence from Philadelphia when your favor of the 25th ult. reached
there, and much occupation since my return. have prevented an early re~ly to
it. This I shall now make as briefly as pOlSible. You account for the 01lllll8ion
• to give daily notice of what you have called the "Contingent Drafts," for
12,300,000. by saying that you had agreed to give notice only oi'warrants, and
not of transfer drafts. Now it canRot fail I think to occur to you, that these
"Contingent Drafts" are nol in their nature at all Transfer Drafts in the sense
hitherto understood, \lut are in fact mere warrants.'
The Transfer Drafts, as you justly state, arise under that provision of the
Charter which obliges the. Bank, whenever required by the Secretary of the
Treaiury, to give the rw:u.IfJr1I fJJCilitia for tf'fJfIIJ/erring tl&e public funds from
pl4t:e to place, within the United States or the ~tories thereof, and for distrihuting the same in payment of the public creditors, witlwul Marging commis·
or claiming allouJame on IMlCOUfIt of dif~ of t:I:Clumge. AcC?ordingly
the Transfer Draft was designed to direct the Bank to make transfers. Its very
name imports it-its very words order it. It runs:
[of.. Pay to - - or order S - to fHI plactd to my credit in tlaat .. fice or Bank," as the case may be) that is, it directs the Bank to place a credit
in favor of the Treasurer in such another place-1Ithether it be a Branch of this
Bank, or a State Bank.
The Contingent Draft, although it is in the same form as the Transfer Draft,
bas not one of its qualities. It is called a Transfer Drat\-yet it directs nothing
to be transferred-it is issued under a provision that tile Bank shall trarlfer
the public moner from place to place, without charging for the rate of exchange, yet it Is 181Ued in favor of a Bank in the same pliu:e. not distant one
hundred yards, and where. no difFerence of exchange was p08S1Dle. The arrangement of 1819. stipulates that a certain time shall be allowed for making
transfers from place to place. But this Contingent Draft i. immediate and pe-


'remptory, and admite of ao dela,y. H~w near., it ~l~e ordiRal')' warrt"t may be se,n froa their respeQ.tive forms. rile warrant runs thus:
.. Pay to A. B. or order, out of the approp~on named in the margin
This Transfer Draft nins:
.. Pay to A. B. CaShier of - - w order t - to be placed to my credit in that Bank." .
This Transfer Draft like the Warrant is endorsed in blank just as an ordinary chee~-it is in point oCfact neither more nor leas than a" warrant at sight.
Ti;le very aame of a Contingent nrai'l is a financial noveltJ'o-nd so ~ as is
telligible in this case, it describes an order for two millions three hundred thousand dollars on the Bank, not merely without notice of its existenee-but with
the stron$'est prelumption againlt its existence, and dependent for its immeditte
presentation on contingencies which the Bank did not know, and the Treasury could not control. ThtlS you state tha't the holders of the!e drafts, .. were
directed to give the proper information tothe Treasury if the drafts were inten·
ded to be u~' yet in fact the holders could not themselves know wbother
they meant to present them an hour before the actual presentation. What I
ventured therefore to state was, that wbile you professed to give notice,
of all the smallest demands on' the Bank, you avoid giving notice of de·
mands for between two and three millions of dollars, of precisely the
same character, and the existence of which it was far mote necessary for
the Bank to know. But supposing all this to be exactly as you view itsupposing this Transfer Draft not to be in faM a warrant, and therefore not ~e­
cessarily to be included in the daily list, one thint\" becomes inevitable. If this
Transfer Draft is not a warrant, it cannot be dented that it is a Transfer Draft.
Then, if it be not a warrant which must be put on the daily list, it must be a
draft to be put on the weekly list. Now it was ridt put upon either. Neither
the daily list which you sent for the purpose of protecting the Bank against
frauds, nor the weekly list, which YOIl considered as a matter of Gonvenien~ to
the Bank for general information, and on which you have always placed the
Transfer Drafts, contained any notice whatever of these drafts. If it be true
that you never put a Transfer Draft on the daily list, it is equally true, that.
until now you have never designedly omitted one from the weeklr li~t. So that
by whatever names the drafts on the lists be called, the result IS the samethat orders from the Treasury for the immediate payment by the Bank, of two
millions, three hundred thousand dollars, have been issued without the habitual
notice which has heretofore been always given of similar demands upon the
Bank. Having thus for the sake of a clear understanding between the Bank
and the Treasury, re·stated my views of the subject, I will only add, that I
am, very respectfully, you'r obedient, humble servant,
S. JAUDON, Cashier.
J. CAlIlPBELr., ElICI,., Treasurer of the United 'States, Washington, D. C.