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OPPOSITE CABINET POLICY.
of his almost unfailing sagacity. This was the way
he had acted as a general, in his military councils, and he found the same plan efficacious in his cabinet. His confidence in Hamilton's talents, information, and integrity had led him to seek his counsels ; but his approbation of those counsels was bottomed on a careful investigation of them. It was the same in regard to the counsels of Jefferson ; they were received with great deference, but always deliberately and scrupulously weighed. The opposite policy of these rival statesmen brought them into incessant collision. “ Hamilton and myself,” writes Jefferson, “were daily pitted in the cabinet like two cocks.” The warmhearted Knox always sided with his old companion in arms ; whose talents he revered. He is often noticed with a disparaging sneer by Jefferson, in consequence. Randolph commonly adhered to the latter. Washington's calm and massive intellect overruled any occasional discord. His policy with regard to his constitutional advisers has been happily estimated by a modern statesman : “He sought no unit cabinet, according to the set phrase of succeeding times. He asked no suppression of sentiment, no concealment of opinion ; he exhibited no mean jealousy of high talent in others. He gathered around him the greatest public men of that day, and some of them to be ranked with the greatest of any day. He did not leave Jefferson and Hamilton without the cabinet, to shake, perhaps, the whole fabric of government in their fierce wars and rivalries, but he took them within, where he himself might arbitrate their disputes as they arose, and turn to the best account for the country their suggestions as they were made.” *
In the mean time two political parties were forming throughout the Union, under the adverse standards of these statesmen. Both had the good of the country at heart, but differed as to the policy by which it was to be secured. The Federalists, who looked up to Hamilton as their model, were in favor of strengthening the general government so as to give it weight and dignity abroad and efficiency at home; to guard it against the encroachments of the individual States and à general tendency to anarchy. The other party, known as republicans or democrats, and taking Mr. Jefferson's view of affairs, saw in all the measures advocated by the Federalists, an intention to convert the Federal into a great central or consolidated government, preparatory to a change from a republic to a monarchy.
The particulars of General Harmer's expedition against the Indiáns, when reported to Congress, gave great dissatisfaction. The conduct of the troops, in suffering themselves to be surprised, was for some time stigmatized as disgraceful. Further troubles in that quarter were apprehended, for the Miamis were said to be less disheartened by the ravage of their villages than exultant at the successful ambuscades of Little Turtle.
Three Seneca chiefs, Complanter, Half Town, and Great Tree, being at the seat of government on business of their own nation, offered to visit these belligerent tribes, and persuade them to bury the hatchet. Washington, in a set speech, encouraged them in the undertaking. "By this humane measure,” said he, ,
* Speech of R. M. T. Hunter, of Virginia.
WASHINGTON'S INDIAN POLICY.
you will render these mistaken people a great service, and probably prevent their being swept off of the face of the earth. The United States require only that these people should demean themselves peaceably. But they may be assured that the United States are able, and will most certainly punish them severely for all their robberies and murders."
Washington had always been earnest in his desire to civilize the savages, but had little faith in the expedient which had been pursued, of sending their young men to our colleges; the true means, he thought, was to introduce the arts and habits of husbandry among them. In concluding his speech to the Seneca chiefs, he observed, “When you return to your country, tell your nation that it is my desire to promote their prosperity by teaching them the use of domestic animals, and the manner that the white people plough and raise so much corn ; and if, upon consideration, it would be agreeable to the nation at large to learn those arts, I will find some means of teaching them at some places within their country as shall be agreed upon."
In the course of the present session, Congress received and granted the applications of Kentucky and Vermont for admission into the Union, the former after August, 1792 ; the latter immediately.
On the 3d of March the term of this first Congress expired. Washington, after reciting the various important measures that had been effected, testified to the great harmony and cordiality which had prevailed. In some few instances, he admitted, particularly in passing the law for higher duties on spirituous liquors, and more especially on the subject of the bank, “ the line between the southern and eastern interests had appeared more strongly marked than could be wished, the former against and the latter in favor of those measures, “but the debates," adds he, “were conducted with temper and candor.”
As the Indians on the north-west side of the Ohio still continued their hostilities, one of the last measures of Congress had been an act to augment the military establishment, and to place in the hands of the executive more ample means for the protection of the frontiers. A new expedition against the belligerent tribes had, in consequence, been projected. General St. Clair, actually governor of the territory west of the Ohio, was appointed commander-in-chief of the forces to be employed.
Washington had been deeply chagrined by the mortifying disasters of General Harmer's expedition to the Wabash, resulting from Indian ambushes. In taking leave of his old military comrade, St. Clair, he wished him success and honor, but gave him a solemn warning. “You have your instructions from the Secretary of War. I had a strict eye to them, and will add but one word-Beware of a surprise! You know how the Indians fight. I repeat it-Beware of a surprise !" With these warning words sounding in his ear, St. Clair departed. *
* Rush's Washington in Domestic Life, p. 67.
WASHINGTON'S TOUR THROUGH THE SOUTHERN STATES-LETTER TO LA
FAYETTE-GLOOMY PIOTURE OF FRENCH AFFAIRS BY GOUVERNEUR
MORRIS-HIS ALLUSION TO LAFAYETTE-LAFAYETTE DEPICTS THE TROUBLES OF A PATRIOT LEADER-WASHINGTON'S REPLY-JEFFERSON'S ARDENT VIEWS OF THE FRENCH REVOLUTION-DISTRUST OF JOHN ADAMS--HIS CONTRIBUTIONS TO FENNO'S GAZETTE-REPRINT OF PAINE'S RIGHTS OF MAN-FLIGHT AND RECAPTURE OF LOUIS XVI.--JEFFERSON COMMUNICATES THE NEWS TO WASHINGTON-HIS SATISFACTION WHEN THE KING ACCEPTS THE CONSTITUTION.
In the month of March Washington set out on a tour through the Southern States; travelling with one set of horses and making occasional halts. The route projected, and of which he had marked off the halting places, was by Fredericksburg, Richmond, Wilmington (N. C.), and Charleston to Savannah; thence to Augusta, Columbia, and the interior towns of North Carolina and Virginia, comprising a journey of eighteen hundred and eighty-seven miles; all which he accomplished without any interruption from sickness, bad weather, or any untoward accident. “Indeed," writes he, “ so highly were we favored that we arrived at each place where I proposed to make any halt, on the very day I fixed upon before we set out. The same horses performed the whole tour ; and, although much reduced in flesh, kept up their full spirits to the last day.”