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blishment thereof; nevertheless, the act contains a proviso restraining its operation until each of the other States shall have passed laws in full conformity with the whole of the revenue system aforesaid. The committee further find, that the State of Rhode Island has passed an act on this subject, but so different from the plan recommended, and so wholly insufficient, that it cannot be considered as a compliance with any part of the system submitted for their adoption; that the State of Maryland passed an act in 1782, and a supplement thereto in 1784, complying with the recommendation of Congress of the 3d of February, 1781, which re. commendation is not compatible with, and was relinquished by, the re. solves of Congress of the 18th of April, 1783; but that neither the State of Maryland, New York, nor Georgia, has passed any act in pur. suance of the system of the 18th of April, 1783.

“From this statement it appears that seven States-viz: New Hamp. shire, Massachusetts, Connecticut, New Jersey, Virginia, North Caro. lina, and South Carolina-have granted the impost in such manner that, if the other six States had made similar grants, the plan of the general impost might immediately begin to operate; that two other Statesan viz: Pennsylvania and Delaware-have also granted the impost, but have connected their grants with provisoes, which will suspend their operation until all the other States shall have passed laws in full conformity with the whole of the revenue system aforesaid ; that two only of these nine States-viz : Delaware and North Carolina—have fully acceded to that system in all its parts; and that the four other States-viz: Rhode Island, New York, Maryland, and Georgia—have not decided in favor of any part of the system of revenue aforesaid, so long since and so repeatedly presented by Congress for their adoption.

“The committee have thought it their duty candidly to examine the principles of this system, and to discover, if possible, the reasons which have prevented its adoption. They cannot learn that any member of the Confederacy has stated or brought forward any objections against it ; and the result of their impartial inquiries into the nature and operation of the plan, has been a clear and decided opinion that the system itself is more free from well-founded exceptions, and is better calculated to receive the approbation of the several States, than any other that the wisdom of Congress can devise.

“In the course of this inquiry, it most clearly appeared that the requisitions of Congress, for eight years past, have been so irregular in their operation, so uncertain in their collection, and so evidently unpro. ductive, that a reliance on them in future, as a source from whence money's

are to be drawn to discharge the engagements of the Confederacy, defi. nite as they are in time and amount, would be not less dishonorable to the understandings of those who entertain such confidence, than it would be dangerous to the welfare and peace of the Union. The committee are therefore seriously impressed with the indispensable obligation that Congress are under representing to the immediate and impartial consideration of the several States the utter impossibility of maintaining and preserving the faith of the Federal Government by temporary requi. sitions on the States, and the consequent necessity of an early and complete accession of all the States to the revenue system of the 18th of April, 1783.

“Although, in a business of this magnitude and importance to the respective States, it was natural to expect a due degree of caution, and a thorough investigation of the system recommended, yet the committee cannot forbear to remark that this plan has been under reference for neurly three years; that, during that period, numerous changes have taken place in the delegations of every State, but that this system has received the repeated approbation of each successive Congress, and that the urgency of the public engagements at this time renders it the un. questionable duty of the several States to adopt, without further delay, those measures which alone, in the judgment of the committee, can pre serve the sacred faith of the Confederacy."

“Thus it is evident that the sum of 2,457,987 25-90ths dollars only was received in the space of more than four years, when the requisitions, in the most forcible manner, pressed on the States the payment of much larger sums, and for purposes of the highest national importance. It should be here observed, that the receipts of the last fourteen months of the above period amount only to 432,897 81-90ths dollars, which is at the rate of 371,052 dollars per annum-a sum short of what is essentially necessary for the bare maintenance of the Federal Government on the most economical establishment, and in time of profound peace.

• The committee observe, with great concern, that the security of the navigation and commerce of the citizens of these States from the Bar. bary powers, the protection of the frontier inhabitants from the savages, the immediate establishment of military inagazines in different parts of the Union, rendered indispensable by the principles of public safety, the maintenance of the Federal Government at home, and the support of the public servants abroad, each and all, depend upon the contributions of the States under the annual requisitions of Congress. The moneys essentially necessary for these important objects will so far exceed the sums formerly collected from the States by taxes, that no hope can be

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indulged of being able, from that source, to make any remittances for the discharge of foreign engagements.

“ Thus circumstanced, after the most solemn deliberation, and under the fullest conviction that the public embarrassments are such as above represented, and that they are daily increasing, the committee are of the opinion that it has become the duty of Congress to declare, most ex. plicitly, that the crisis has arrived when the people of these United States, by whose will and for whose benefit the Federal Government was insti. tuted, must decide whether they will support their rank as a nation, by maintaining the public faith at home and abroad, or whether, for want of a timely exertion in establishing a general revenue, and thereby giving strength to the Confederacy, they will hazard not only the existence of the Union, but of those great and invaluable privileges for which they have so arduously and so honorably contended."

Resolved, That Congress agree to the said report.

And, to the end that Congress may remain wholly acquitted from every imputation of a want of atte to the interest and welfare of those whom they represent,

Resolved, That the requisitions of Congress of the 27th of April, 1784, and the 27th of September, 1785, cannot be considered as the esta. blishment of a system of general revenue, in opposition to that recommended to the several States by the resolves of Congress of the 18th of April, 1783.

Resolved, That the resolves of Congress of the 18th of April, 1783, recommending a system of general revenue, be again presented to the consideration of the legislatures of the several States which have not fully complied with the same. That it be earnestly recommended to the Legislatures of New Hampshire, Massachusetts, Connecticut, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Virginia, and South Carolina, which have complied only in part with the said system, completely to adopt the same, and to the Legislatures of the States of Rhode Island, New York, Ma. ryland, and Georgia, which have not adopted the said system, either in whole or in part, to pass laws, without further delay, in full conformity with the same. But, as it is highly necessary that every possible aid should, in the most expeditious manner, be obtained to the revenue of the United States, it is therefore recommended to the several States, that, in adopting the said system, they enable the United States in Congress assembled, to carry into effect that part which relates to the im. post, so soon as it shall be acceded to.

Resolved, That, whilst Congress are denied the means of satisfying those engagements which they have constitutionally entered into for the common benefit of the Union, they hold it ther duty to warn their con. stituents that the most fatal evils will inevitably flow from a breach of public faith, pledged by solemn contract, and a violation of those principles of justice which are the only solid basis of the honor and prosperity of nations.


FRIDAY, MARCH 3, 1786. The committee, consisting of Mr. Kean, Mr. Gorham, Mr. Pinckney, Mr. Smith, and Mr. Grayson, to whom were recommitted sundry papers and documents relative to commerce, and the acts passed by the States in consequence of the recommendations of Congress of the 30th April, 1784, report

That, in examining the laws passed by the States in consequence of the act of 30th April, 1784, they find that four States—namely, Mas. sachusetts, New York, New Jersey, and Virginia—have enacted laws conformable to the recommendations contained in the act, but have re. strained their operation until the other States shall have substantially complied.

That three States-namely, Connecticut, Pennsylvania, and Mary. land—have passed laws conforming to the same, but have determined the time from which they are to commence—the first from the time of passing their act, in May, 1785; and the two latter from the 30th April, 1784.

That New Hampshire, by an act passed the 230 June, 1785, has granted full powers to regulate their trade, by restrictions or duties, for fifteen years, with a proviso that the law shall be suspended until the other States have substantially done the same.

That Rhode Island, by acts passed in February and October, 1785, has granted power for the term of twenty-five years to regulate trade between the respective States, and of prohibiting, restraining, or regu. lating, the importation only of all foreign goods in any ships or vessels other than those owned by citizens of the United States, and navigated by a certain proportion of citizens; and also with a proviso restrictive of its operation until the other States shall have substantially complied.

That North Carolina, by an act passed the 2d June, 1784, has granted powers similar to those granted by Rhode Island, relative to foreign commerce, but unresirained in duration, and clogged with a clause that when all the States shall have substantially complied therewith, it shall become an article of confederation and perpetual union.

That they cannot find that the three other States-namely, Delaware, South Carolina, and Georgia-have passed any laws in consequence of the recommendations.

The result is, that four States have fully complied; three others have also complied, but have determined the time of commencement, so that there will be a dissimilarity in the duration of the power granted; that three other States have passed laws in pursuance of the recommendations, but so inconsonant to them, both in letter and spirit, that they cannot be deemed compliances; and that three other States have passed no acts whatever.

That, although the powers to be vested by the recommendations do not embrace every object which may be necessary in a well-formed system, yet, as many beneficial effects may be expected from them, the committee think it the duty of Congress again to call the attention of the States to this subject, the longer delay of which must be attended with very great evils. Whereupon,

Resolved, That the recommendations of the 30th April, 1784, be again presented to the view of the States of Delaware, South Carolina, and Georgia, and that they be most earnestly called upon to grant powers conformable thereto.

Resolved, That the States of New Hampshire, Rhode Island, and North Carolina, be solicited to reconsider their acts, and to make them agreeable to the recommendations of the 30th April, 1784.

Resolved, That the time for which the power under the recommendations of the 30th April, 1784, is to continue, ought to commence on the day that Congress shall begin to exercise it; and that it be recommended to the States of Pennsylvania, Connecticut, and Maryland, to amend their acts accordingly.



MONDAY, OCTOBER 23, 1786. The committee, consisting of Mr. Pinckney, Mr. Smith, and Mr. Henry, to whom was referred an act of the Legislature of the State of Georgia, passed in consequence of the resolutions of the 30th April, 1784, respecting commerce, and the subject of the said recommendation, having reported—

“That it appears, by the said resolutions, the United States in Congress assembled recommended to the legislatures of the several States to vest them, for the term of fifteen years, with powers to prohibit any goods, wares, or merchandise, from being imported into, or exported

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