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Report of the Secretary of the Navy.

commanding officer of a squadron, or of a single
ship when not with a squadron, shall, on his re-
turn from a regular cruise, report to the Navy De-
partment, in the muster-roll of the men under his
command, a statement of the good or bad general
deportment of each man, with a special designa-
tion of those whose conduct has merited that de-
gree of approbation which shall entitle them to be
admitted into the Navy.

That this report be submitted by the Depart-
ment to the President, who shall thereupon issue
a general order to admit into the Navy the seamen
who have been distinguished in the report for good
conduct. And the President shall transmit with
this order to the commanding officer of the squad-
ron or ship a certificate to each seaman, written on
parchment and stamped with the signature of the
President himself, expressing his approbation of
his conduct and his permission to admit the sub-
of it into the Navy; which certificates shall be
delivered by the commanding officer of the squad-
ron or ship to the men entitled to them before they
are discharged from the ship. This delivery to be
made in the presence of the crews and with suit-
able formality to attract public notice.

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and has earned some three or four hundred dol-
lars. He has no home; often no friends but his
comrades. He knows no thrift, no saving econ-
omy: has no adviser. His only outlook is for
some pastime, and his idea of that is confined to
sensual enjoyment. Every one is familiar with
his history in his brief sojourn on shore. He is
a victim to that class of persons who pander to his
appetites and who plunder him of his earnings.
Necessity and inclination very soon drive him
back to the sea, where he finds his natural home
and the only friends who can understand his char-
acter and sympathize with it. It is very apparent
that a man so organized and circumstanced stands
very much in need of better culture than this course
of life affords. A discreet attention to his condi-
tion by the Government, with a few salutary regu-
lations that may teach him more thrift and furnish
him guidance and encouragement, will make him
more useful as a citizen, or at least more self-de-ject
pendent and respectable in his individual charac-
ter, and render him at the same time certainly not
less useful in his profession.

I propose, for the consideration of Congress, a plan for the reorganization of this portion of the Navy, which, if matured by such experience as the future practice of it may afford, will, I am confident, enhance the respectability and value of our seamen, and secure to the country a most efficient corps of men permanently devoted to the public service.

I think it cannot be doubted that the successful application of the Navy to the purposes for which it is designed would be better assured by the services of a well-disciplined and carefully-maintained body of seamen permanently attached to the public naval establishment and incorporated with it, than it ever has been, or is ever likely to be by the fluctuating and variable resource of frequent enlistment and discharge. The constant changes which this corps undergoes is unfavorable to the growth of that sentiment, so essential to the service, which makes a sailor proud of his flag. It is still more unfavorable to the acquirement of that peculiar adaptation of habit and training to the duties belonging to the employment of a manof-war, which all officers regard as the test and indispensable element of an efficient seaman in the Navy. In a large Navy like that of England, where all the seamen of the mercantile marine, in a certain sense, belong to the Government, the difference between the man-of-war's man and the seaman of civil employment is not so apparent or significant as it is in our service, in which the seamen bear so small a proportion to the whole body of mariners of the nation. Every English sailor has generally more or less service in the Navy, and passes so frequently from the private to the public employment as to give him to a great degree an actual incorporation in the national marine: the one service is so connected with the other that the seamen of both assimilate more in their training and education than the correspondent classes in this country. Our Navy, for obvious reasons connected with these considerations, is much more dependent upon a body of men nurtured by the Government and attached to the service than that of England. It is, therefore, a fundamental purpose in the plan which I submit to Congress to provide for the ultimate establishment of a permanent and recognized body of seamen, connected with the Navy by the strongest and most durable bonds of attachment and interest

Whilst providing for the gradual and eventual organization of such a body, my attention has been directed also to the procurement of men of the highest character in personal and professional quality, in whose good deportment and faithful service will be found the most satisfactory reasons for protecting by legal enactment their whole class against the form of punishment which has of late so much excited the sensibility of the nation. The successful accomplishment of such an object, I trust, will commend the plan to the regard of all who desire to preserve that exemption, and who have hoped to find it practice not incompatible with the highest efficiency of service on shipboard. The general outline of the plan may be exhibited in the following regulations:

With a view to the commencement of this system, and to organize a body of efficient seamen of the most meritorious class, I propose that every

3. No registered seaman of the Navy to be subject to any corporal or other punishment of a degrading character, and to such only as may be ordered by a court-martial on charges duly preferred and tried. This prohibition not to prevent the punishment without a court-martial of such minor delinquencies in conduct and discipline as may be corrected by withholding the usual indulgences of the service, stopping portions of the ration, or increasing ordinary duty,

4. Every registered seaman to be entitled after any term of three years' service to a furlough of such reasonable length as may enable him to make one or more voyages in the merchant marine, not extending, without special permission, to more than six months; such furlough to be granted by the commanding officer of the squadron, or the commandant of the navy-yard nearest to the port at which his cruise may terminate, and only to be granted in any case with an expressed reservation and notice that the seaman to whom it is given shall report for duty in the Navy when any public emergency shall render it necessary so to order him, the order for his return to duty to be issued by the Navy Department or by such officer as That each seaman to whom this certificate shall may be authorized by the Department to do so. be awarded shall, if he accept it, register his name A failure to report in accordance with this provisin a book to be provided for that purpose and kept ion to render him liable to be struck off the regison board of the ship, by which registry he shall try by the Secretary of the Navy. Every regisbecome a registered seaman of the Navy of the tered seaman reporting for duty within three United States, and be entitled to all the privileges months of his last cruise, and being thereupon and be bound to all the obligations of that charac-ordered to duty, to be entitled to pay from the ter. This registry book shall be transmitted to date of termination of his last cruis the Navy Department, where it shall be preserved; and the entries made in it copied into a general registry, alphabetically arranged, and kept in the Department.

The obligations incurred by every seaman who signs the register shall be those of faithful service and due performance of all seamanlike duty under the flag of the United States, good moral deportment, and prompt obedience to all orders that may be issued by his lawful superiors so long as he shall continue to be a member of the Navy.

The privileges attached to this registry shall be:

1. For every five years of actual duty on board a public vessel an increase of one dollar a month over and above the established rates of ordinary pay; that is to say, for the first five years of such service one dollar per month; for a second term of five years of such service an additional dollar per month; for a third term of five years another dollar; and for a fourth term of five years-making a total of twenty years service another dollar; amounting in all for such twenty years service to four dollars a month; after which no further increase to be made. This additional monthly pay, so earned by service, to be paid to each man so long as he may continue to be a registered seaman of the Navy; and, after twenty years of service, to be paid whether he continues a registered sea

man or not.

The right to this additional pay to be liable to forfeiture at any time within the twenty years actual service by the resignation of any seaman on the registry, or by his being struck off the list of registered seamen; which may be done at any time; and shall only be done by the order of the Secretary of the Navy, or by the sentence of a naval court-martial, upon charges of misconduct; in either of which events-resignation or discharge by sentence of the Secretary of the Navy or of a court-martial-he shall cease to belong to the Navy, and shall lose all the privileges of such a character.


2. Every registered seaman to be entitled to resign his post in the Navy at any time after three years' service, if not engaged on a cruise. When engaged on a cruise and absent from the ports of the United States, he shall not resign without the consent of the commanding officer of his ship. A record of all resignations to be duly kept and reported to the Department.

A registered seaman of more than twenty years' service continuing in the Navy, only to forfeit his additional pay when such forfeiture shall be adjudged. by a court-martial as a punishment for grossly immoral or insubordinate conduct. By such sentence also for such offenses, his additional pay may be suspended by a court for such time as they may adjudge.

All furloughs to be regularly reported and noted at the Navy Department.

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5. Every registered seaman to be entitled to wear on his dress some appropriate badge by which he may be distinguished and known in the Navy, which badge will be designated and provided by the Navy Department.

6. The petty officers of each ship to be selected, as far as convenient, from the class of registered seamen, and the appointment always to be regarded as dependent upon the merit and good character of the person selected, to be held on good behavior, during the term of a cruise.

7. A record to be kept, under the direction of every commanding officer of a squadron or ship, of the actual amount of sea service performed by each registered seaman whilst under his command. This record to be returned to the Department at the end of every cruise, and to be transferred to the general registry of seamen. Upon the evidence of this general registry the additional pay to be granted."

8. Every seaman to be admonished to give his true name, age, and place of birth, upon signing the registry, and to be required to engage not to ship in merchant or other vessels, whilst on furlough, by any other name. His being convicted of violating this engagement to render him liable to be struck from the list of registered seamen upon the order of the Secretary of the Navy.

9. In every case of dismissal from the service, as a registered seaman, the party so dismissed to receive whatever moneys may be due to him, unless the same shall have been forfeited by the sentence of a court-martial imposed as a punishment for an offense committed by him. A seaman dismissed from the registry not to be entitled to be restored but upon the permission of the head of the Navy Department, granted in consideration of the meritorious character of the applicant.

10. Seamen, ordinary seamen, and landsmen in the service, not belonging to the registry, to be subject to such discipline, duty, and penalties as Congress may provide in a code of regulations adapted to their government, under such restrictions or modifications as the Department may think proper to make.

11. A printed book or circular to be made by the Department, containing all the regulations and conditions relating to the establishment of registered seamen, giving a full description of the obligations to be contracted by them, and of the privileges to which they may be entitled. Copies of this book or circulars to be furnished to every squadron or single vessel in commission, of which copies, one shall be given to every seaman, in order that he may be fully informed of the nature of the engagements to be incurred by him on entering the service of the United States. These

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32D CONG.....2D SESS.

Report of the Secretary of the Navy.

tection of but two frigates and two sloops-of-war,
composing a squadron whose utmost activity can
but half perform the duty assigned to it. Our
new relations with Asia and the intermediate
islands, which are constantly multiplying the
resources of trade, and with them the hazards of
collision, and the consequent increase of numbers
drawn from the population of every country to
the competitions of this theater, all indicate the
commencement of an era of great political signifi-
cance, which will henceforth exact from the Gov-
ernment more than its accustomed vigilance in
noting the progress of events, and more than its
usual energy in the duty of guarding our citizens
who may be connected with them. It is, there-
fore, more necessary than ever that we should
have a respectable force always accessible to our
countrymen in this field of action, and capable of
giving them protection against the perils of war
and popular outbreak and revolutionary commo-
tion, which in future, even more than in the past,
may be expected to characterize many of the
States and communities to which their business
invites them. A steamer of a large class, adapted
to the general duties of a cruise, and a smaller one
to be kept at hand at San Francisco, for use in
California and Oregon, I regard as almost indis-
pensable additions to the squadron assigned to that


regulations to be read and explained to the several crews, and as far as may be necessary to every seaman before he signs the registry.

12. The Department to be authorized to make, alter, and modify all rules and regulations, so far as it may be found expedient for the due establishment and support of this purpose of creating a corps of registered seamen, in accordance with the general objects intended to be promoted in the above plan, and for the supplying of any defect which experience may show to exist in it.

The term seamen, as used throughout this plan, is to be understood to embrace every class of mariners on board a public vessel, whether denominated seamen, ordinary seamen, or landsmen.

13. A limited number of boys to be received into the Navy upon obligations contracted according to law, to serve until they arrive at the age of twenty-one years. Their number, the quota to be allowed to each vessel, and all needful and proper rules for their government and duties to be regulated by the orders of the Navy Department.

This system of providing for a more effective marine I respectfully submit to your consideration. There already exists power in the Executive to adopt nearly the whole of its details. It may be proper, however, to submit it to the approval of Congress, with a view to obtain for it a legislative recognition, and especially to procure such enactments as may be necessary to give the sanction of law to the establishment of the registry, which constitutes the ground-work of the plan."

Looking to the Atlantic, we find motives equally strong for the increase of our naval armaments, and particularly for the enlargement of the number of our steamships.


Whilst I am fully aware that the power of the In the activity and diversity of enterprise which United States happily consists more in their ability the busy spirit of this time has exacted from the to provide for the contingencies of invasion than Navy, it, has now become manifest that the in- in the actual exhibition of an equipped force, and crease of the naval establishment of the country that we may dispense with much that is deemed is not only recommended by the most urgent pub-requisite in the relations of European Powers, lic considerations, but is also forced upon the at- still we cannot fail to recognize the fact, that the tention of Congress as an absolute necessity. The respect due to the interests of our people requires the habitual and familiar presence of our flag in every region of commerce, sustained by such an amount of force, and of such a quality, as may give some significant token of the resources we command at home. A salutary conviction on this point is, to a great extent, inspired by the excellence of our armaments when brought into comparison with those of other nations. We cannot afford to lose or impair our reputation for producing the best ships and the best disciplined crews that navigate the ocean, however we may afford to exhibit them in smaller numbers.

honor as well as the successful venture of the nation, and I might even say the indispensable obligation of national defense, and the constantly-recurring need for the exhibition of the national power, all combine to present this question to Congress as one of the first magnitude. During the past year this Department has been impelled, by a due regard for the great public interests committed to its charge, to put in requisition nearly the whole disposable force of the Navy: The details of this report will show that constant and various employment has been demanded of officers, ships, and crews. I trust that Congress will see in these requisitions how much the demands of necessary service engross the means provided to accomplish it, and will deduce from this fact an argument in favor of enlarging the naval resources for still larger naval operations.

Whilst other great maritime Powers are strengthening and extending their capabilities for aggression and defense, and are bestowing a sedulous labor upon the creation of steam navies of singular efficiency, they have imposed upon us a new obligation, if not to track their progress with equal steps, in an effort to bring ourselves abreast with them in their advance, at least to maintain that position of relative strength which it has been our policy heretofore to assume.

The principal maritime nations are now dili gently intent upon the effort to build up powerful steam navies. Most of them are already far ahead of us in this species of force; and it is very obvious, from the urgency with which the new marine of Europe is pressed to assume this character, that there is a deep and earnest conviction of an impending necessity in which the improved force will be mainly relied on as the efficient element of war. Are we so far removed from the occasion or the scene of apprehended conflict as to warrant any indifference on our part to the possible issues of a collision? Are our affairs so little exposed abroad, or so concentrated at home, as to exempt us from all necessity to consider the effects which may follow the recent changes in the naval organization of Europe?

The actual exigencies of our own service, so conspicuously multiplied by the rapid extension These considerations, and others which they of our domain and the settlement of new marts of suggest, induce me to ask the attention of Contrade, and the establishment of new lines of com- gress to the recommendations of the Bureau of merce on the Pacific, cannot but present to every Construction accompanying this report, and to citizen of the United States an altogether irresistible invite them, with the most earnest solicitude, to argument to persuade the nation to a much larger provide for the building of three first-class screw provision of ships and men than we have hereto-propeller frigates, and the same number of profore kept in commission. The Pacific, during the peller sloops-of-war. To these might be added next ten years, is likely to become the theater of with advantage a few smaller steamers adapted to the most interesting events of our time. A nation quick dispatch and coast navigation. is growing up upon its shores, which will both attract and supply an amount of commercial enterprise in the rapid growth and activity of which the world has yet had no parallel. The discovery of America did not give such an impulse to this spirit as we now witness in the energy and occupations of these recent settlements.

At this moment we are without a public steamship in that ocean. Our various commerce scattered along the whole coast from Oregon to Chili, and our citizens who are found in every port throughout that extended line, are left to the pro

Our navy-yards are abundantly supplied with
large quantities of the best timber, in the best con-
dition, which could not be better appropriated than
to this object. There are two frigates, the Santee
and the Sabine, which have been housed on the

stocks in Portsmouth and New York for the last
ten years. These might be launched and fitted
for service, and their places might be occupied as
well as the sheds now vacant in other yards by
the new steamships proposed to be built.

In connection with this subject, I would call the
attention of Congress to the necessity of authoriz-


ing the establishment of one or more factories for the construction of all the machinery necessary to the complete equipment of the largest class of steamers. The great importance of such estab lishments to the Government is felt by this Department in the daily conviction that only by the command of such a resource may the Navy be promptly and surely supplied with the best machinery for the public vessels. The inspection and control of the work whilst it is in progress, the assurance of the best material, and the punctual compliance with the demands of the service, are advantages that may only be efficiently secured by having the workshop under the command of the Government. The experience of the past will also fully demonstrate that this mode of supplying the machinery of our public vessels must be, in its general result, more economical than any other, and will certainly secure much the most reliable kind of work. The plans would be more uniform, failure of machinery less frequent, and the improvement of the models of construction more certain.

The mail contract law of 1847 contains a provision which authorizes the Government to appropriate any of the vessels built under it to the naval service. I would recommend that one of these, of the first class, be selected and equipped with the proper armament. I make this suggestion from a persuasion that it is a matter of importance to the Government practically to determine, by experi ment, a question upon which much doubt is enter tained, and which it is necessary to solve, whether these steamers are really adequate to the demands of the naval service, and may be usefully converted into ships of war. The determination of this question may settle a point of great moment touching the reliance to be placed upon these ships in any sudden emergency-a point much more safely to be settled in a time of peace than in moments of excitement and pressure, when no other resource may be at hand to meet the consequences of a failure.

It is further necessary to make provision for an increase of seamen. The present limit of seven thousand five hundred men is insufficient even for the necessities of the service in its existing condition. If the full complement of men appropriated by the regulations of the Navy were now on board of the vessels in commission, more than the whole number allowed would be required. I think it therefore indispensable to the proper efficiency of the service that an addition of not less than fifteen hundred be authorized to be made to the establishment, and that a correspondent addition be made to the yearly estimates of naval pay. It is equally necessary that provision be made for an increase of wages, either in monthly pay or in the shape of a bounty, to be given after enlistment. The amount of this increase should be regulated by some reference to the wages given in the merchant service, which are now so much higher than the naval pay as to increase the difficulty, to which I have heretofore alluded, in the procurement of the best men.

A reference to the report of the Bureau of Medicine will inform Congress of the condition of the medical service of the Navy and the pressing necessity that exists for an increase of officers in that department. Great relief would be afforded by an authority to appoint a number, not exceeding twenty assistant surgeons, and to make a correspondent promotion of an equal number, or of so many as by proper length of service may be qualified for it, into the upper grades.

I beg leave also to call the attention of Congress to the report of the commanding officer of the Marine Corps, which will show how inadequate is the present limitation of that corps to the ordinary demands of the service. The opinion of General Henderson upon this point, of itself entitled to great weight, is reënforced by that of many of the most experienced officers of the Navy, as will be seen in the correspondence accompanying the report, to which I invite a careful attention. In conformity with these opinions, respectfully recommend to Congress the passage of a law to authorize the enlargement of the corps by the addition of eighty sergeants, eighty corporals, thirty drummers and fifers, and one thousand privates, and that the four captains, four first and four second lieutenants, conditionally allowed to the service by the proviso to the naval appropria

Report of the Secretary of the Navy.

reaus of this Department will make Congress acquainted with the details of the naval service in each branch of its administration. I respectfully ask their attention to the many valuable suggestions these reports contain for the better government of the Navy. Amongst these, I select for a more special notice the recommendations of the Bureau of Provisions and Clothing, touching the mode of making contracts, in respect to which it is proposed that some discretion should be lodged in the bureau to authorize its rejection of a contract when offered by a bidder who has on any previous occasion failed to comply with his engagement.

I particularly commend to the notice of Congress the representations of the Bureau of Yards and Docks in reference to the several navy-yards under its care. The yard at New York requires early consideration. A large portion of the land belonging to it has not yet been placed under the exclusive jurisdiction of the United States, and is consequently subjected to onerous assessments for improvements by the city of Brooklyn, and exposed to the very inconvenient demands of that city in the opening of streets leading to the channel of the Wallabout, which, if opened, would seriously affect the security of the yard, and greatly incommode its operations. So important is it to the Government that this difficulty should be removed, that I think it would even be advisable to transfer the works of this yard to some other convenient location, unless the jurisdiction over the land be fully conceded to the United States. Efforts have been made, and are still making, to obtain this cession from the Legislature, and I trust will now be successful. If they should not, there is reason to believe a better site may be obtained for the yard, free from the present inconveniences; and that the expense of the new establishment might be defrayed by the sale of the old.

The floating dry-dock in California, contracted for in obedience to the several acts of Congress heretofore passed, has been completed, and delivered at San Francisco. No appropriation was made for the basin and railway, without which the dock cannot be safely or usefully employed. I submit it to the decision of Congress whether these structures should not be made without delay.

32D CONG.....2d Sess.

tion bill of March 3, 1849, be retained permanently in the corps.

The same necessity which has led to this representation of the embarrassments of the service in those branches to which I have just alluded, compels me to ask for some addition to the corps of pursers. This important division of the naval organization is found to stand in need of more aid than the present allowance affords. The corps scarcely furnishes that proper rotation in service which the peculiar duties of the purser demands. It is necessary after every cruise to allow this officer a sufficient time on shore to settle his accounts-a period which will not always place him at the disposal of the Department for an early return to sea, if it were even proper to compel these officers to a repetition of duty without some time for such refreshment on shore as every officer requires.

If Congress should think proper, in consideration of this condition of the corps, to sanction an increase of its members, I would earnestly recommend the establishment of a grade of assistant pursers, to which only the new appointments should be made; that these assistants should undergo an examination as to their physical and mental abilities previous to their appointment; that the age of admission should be regulated by the Navy Department; and that no applicant should be nominated for the corps without a satisfactory conformity to the preliminary condition. Promotion and pay should be regulated by law, and no promotion should be made but upon full evidence of the capability of the individual to comply with all the demands of service; this evidence to be obtained by such course of examination as the Department may prescribe. With such conditions, I would recommend that Congress should at present authorize the appointment of twenty assistant pursers to be attached to the corps.


As a subject of great interest to the efficiency of the Navy, I beg leave to renew the recommendations heretofore made by this Department for the gradual reduction of the number of officers who are incapable of useful service, by the adoption of some suitable plan for retiring all of this character from the sphere of ordinary duty. A well-organized naval system requires that the officers charged with its administration should, as far as possible, be maintained in a condition for whatever employment may be demanded of them, and should always exhibit the utmost alacrity in their obedience to orders. There is no better test of the spirit of the corps, nor no more commendable sign of a good officer, than his readiness to accept every call of his profession. This high character can only be maintained in the Navy by exempting from command all who obstruct the path of duty. Those whose disability has been the result of long and faithful toil in the national service should be provided with an honorable retreat, in which old age and infirmity may find repose. They who, with- The Naval Observatory continues to pursue its out service to plead for their incapacity, only stand | appropriate labors, with its usual good results, and in the way of more willing and more capable men, is found to contribute the most important facilities should be consigned to a retirement on smaller pay, to the improvement of navigation. I cannot better by the operation of a law which should render'commend it to the regard of Congress than by a their retirement compulsory. reference to the letter of Lieutenant Maury, which accompanies this report.

The Naval Asylum at Philadelphia is well conducted, and is found a valuable refuge to the infirm and disabled seamen who have been admitted into it. I concur in the opinion expressed by the head of the Bureau of Yards and Docks, that its position is not the best adapted to its effective usefulness in the Navy; and as the property is believed to be very valuable, it may be worthy of consideration whether it would not be good policy to dispose of it, and reëstablish this institution either at Annapolis or Norfolk, where its inmates would be removed from the temptations to disorder which the proximity to a large city throws in their way.

The first volume of the Nautical Almanac, in charge of Lieutenant Davis, is now in press, and will be given to the public. His report will explain the progress and condition of his work.

It may be worth the consideration of Congress to make permanent provision for these two classes of officers. This might be advantageously accomplished, perhaps, by a law which should confer upon the first class a rate of retired pay, graduated from half pay up to that allowed to leave of absence, according to the amount of sea service they may have performed, and adding to this an honorary promotion of one degree in rank, and which should dispose of the second class by retiring them on half of leave of absence pay.

The details necessary to such a system may be easily regulated whenever Congress shall find occasion to take the subject into their deliberations.

I repeat also my concurrence in the views presented by my predecessor in his report of November, 1850, on the propriety of "recognizing by law the office of Commodore, and the creation of at least two officers of the rank of Rear Admiral." I can add nothing to the satisfactory arguments with which that recommendation is enforced, and therefore content myself with a reference to the report, and an earnest invocation to Congress to give it a favorable consideration.


The reports from the chiefs of the several bu

Lieutenant Gilliss, who for more than three years past has been employed, in pursuance of the directions of Congress, in conducting in Chili the observations recommended to be made by the American Philosophical Society and the Academy of Arts and Sciences, has recently returned to the United States, bringing with him a rich contribution to science, in a series of observations amounting to nearly forty thousand, and embracing a most extensive catalogue of stars. He deserves great praise for his assiduity in this labor, which, in conjunction with similar observations in other quarters of the globe, will supply important aid towards the determination of the solar parallax, a problem of great interest to navigation and science. Upon the conclusion of his work at Santiago, he was enabled to make a judicious sale of his observatory and its apparatus to the Chilian Government, which has manifested a most friendly interest in his service, and afforded him much useful assistance.


His full report will be made to this Department, and as soon as received will be transmitted to Congress.

Professor Espy during the past year has been, as in the years before it, busy in the pursuit of his meteorological observations and his theory of storms, prosecuting his researches without abatement of zeal or assiduity. He promises soon to give the world another volume of facts and deductions, by which he hopes to bring the laws of the wind and the tempest into the category of an "exact science." His letter appended to this report will explain his progress, and commend his industry to the friendly recognition of Congress.

By the enactment of the naval appropriation bill of August 31, 1852, this Department was authorized and directed "to select a site for a navy-yard and naval depôt in the bay of San Francisco, in California, or neighboring waters.


The board of officers who were dispatched to make the necessary examinations for the selection of this site have performed the task intrusted to them, and have returned to this city. They have not yet entirely completed their report. It will be put in the possession of this Department in a few days, when I shall make it the subject of a special communication to Congress.

I renew the recommendations heretofore made, and now again referred to in the report of the Bureau of Provisions and Clothing, in favor of such discretionary change in the Navy ration as recent scientific research has proved to be useful, through the process by which vegetables may be preserved for consumption at sea. And I also adopt, and respectfully beg leave to urge upon the attention of the Legislature, the suggestions of the head of that bureau in reference to a prescribed limit on the commutation for stopped rations in money.

Congress having at its last session made a retrospective provision for an increase of pay to the officers, petty officers, seamen, and marines of the Navy, and to the officers and men of the revenue service, who served in the Pacific ocean, on the coast of California and Mexico, since the 28th of September, 1850, it would seem to be but an equitable act, and strictly in accordance with the liberal design of this provision, to extend its operations so far back in point of time as to embrace the case of those who served on that coast from the origin of the war. Indeed, every consideration which could recommend the policy of the appropriation that was made will be found to apply with increased cogency to those to whom I have alluded. Their service is more severe, their hazards greater, and the expenses to which they were subject in that quarter, when the country was more unprovided than in the subsequent period, were still more onerous. An appropriation in their behalf of a similar character to that which was made in favor of their successors would be an acceptable and just tribute to a corps which has proved itself worthy of the high appreciation of the Government.

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Leaves for the support of the Navy and Marine Corps.

7.469,671 69

It is proper to remark, that the large increase in some of the estimates made for the coming year over the actual amounts appropriated for the service of the last two or three years, which it will be found are required for the improvement of yards and docks, construction, equipment, and repair of vessels, the expenses of ordnance, and the encouragement and support of the mail service, has become necessary by the reduction which Congress has hitherto thought proper to make from the estimates submitted for the expenditures which were thought essential to the public service in most of these branches of the naval administration. The appropriations now asked for may, therefore, be regarded as the necessary consequence of such a subtraction from what was deemed but an adequate annual provision for the completion of works of indispensable use. And being viewed in the

32D CONG.....2D SESS.

light of arrears due to the public wants, they furnish no index of what may be the future necessities of the Department provided for as they arise.

The estimate for the mail service also, being one with which the naval establishment has no proper connection, should not be brought into the account of the expenditures of the Navy.

The total amount drawn from the Treasury during the fiscal year ending June 30, 1852, as shown by the statement of appropriations for the naval service prepared by the Second Comptroller of the Treasury, is.. .$9,726,251 42 Deduct repayments. 813,132 70 Which shows the sum of.... .$8,913,118 72 as the total expenditure on all objects under the control of the Navy Department, but of which amount there was expended for special objects the sum of $2,656,066 84, leaving as the true expenditure for the support of the Navy and Marine Corps $6,257,051 88 for the fiscal year ending June 30, 1852.


Report of the Secretary of the Interior.

DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR, December 4, 1852. SIR: In anticipation of the approaching session of Congress, I respectfully submit the following report of the operations of the Department of the Interior.

The general nature of the duties of this Department has been fully explained in my former reports, and, without repeating what has been said, I will proceed to exhibit, under appropriate heads, a condensed view of its condition and wants.

Department proper.

Land service....

Indian affairs.

Report of the Secretary of the Interior.

sion of the Capitol, for which object no estimate
was made for the present year. The residue of
the excess is for other new objects in the city of
Washington, which will be fully explained in the
report of the Commissioner of Public Buildings.

The unexpended balances of appropriations for the naval service, marine corps, and special objects under the control of the Navy Department was, on the 30th of June, 1852, $3,119,644 50, alt of which will be required to meet the outstanding obligations due from the appropriations to complete the objects as provided for by the appropriations for that year, in addition to the estimates for the fiscal years ending 30th June, 1853 and 1854. Accompanying the reports and documents willing be found the abstract or compendium of the reports of the chiefs of the bureaus required by the resolution of the Senate of the 26th August, 1852. I have the honor to be, very respectfully, your obedient servant, JOHN P. KENNEDY.


To enable you to make a comparison of the estimates for the next fiscal year with those for the present, I submit the following tabular state


$35,827 50
.1,284,916 47
.1,343,276 36
..1,566,040 00
672,033 00
418,504 71

Pension office.

Expenses of U. States courts...

Public buildings..

Penitentiary of the District of Co


Agricultural statistics.

Insane paupers....

Mexican Boundary Survey..

9,210 00 5,500 00 10,000 00 150,000 00 200,000 00


$35,230 00 1,077,060 55 1,015,735 50 985,846 66 672,900 00 1,107,663 00 8,890 00 7,700 00 10,000 00

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The expenses of the Penitentiary have been again reduced, under the judicious management of the present inspectors and warden.

Large balances of the appropriations for pensions will remain unexpended at the close of the present fiscal year. The amount estimated for that service during the next year is, therefore, less by $580,193 34 than for the present. The estimate for public buildings exceeds that of the present year $689,158 29. This is caused by the introduction of an item of $600,000 for the extenNW SERIES.-No. 2.

The estimate for agricultural statistics has been increased $2,200. This consists of two items, viz: for salary of a librarian $1,200, and for the purchase of additional books $1,000. No estimates have been submitted for the Census or Mexican boundary survey, because the sums which may be required will depend upon the action of Congress on the recommendations contained in other parts of this report.


The report of the Commissioner of the General Land Office exhibits much diligence and activity in that branch of the public service, and contains important recommendations suggested by experience, to all of which I invite your attention.

The northern boundary of the State of Iowa has been run and marked with unprecedented dispatch, and a full report of the survey will be submitted at an early period of the session of Congress.

The quantity of land sold during the last fiscal year is 1,553,071 acres, being 293,776 acres less than the preceding year. The quantity located with bounty land warrants is 3,201,314 acres,

an increase on the previous year of 747,314 acres. The quantity reported under the swampland grants is 5,219,188, and that selected for railroads, &c., is 3,025,920 acres. The aggregate of all the public lands disposed of during the last fiscal year is 13,115,175 acres, being an increase over the previous year of 3,342,372 acres. In consequence of the more advantageous terms upon which lands can be located with bounty land warrants, the sales for cash have been diminished; the quantity sold during the first quarter of the present fiscal year being but little over one half. the quantity sold during the corresponding quarter of the present year.

In the first quarter of the present fiscal year there were sold for cash. 243,255 acres. Located with bounty land war

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1,387,116 "

Located with other certificates....
Reported under swamp-land grants 2,485,233
Making the aggregate quantity dis-


posed of during the quarter.... 4,131,253 "
If the appropriations by means of sale, locations
of bounty land warrants, and selections of swamp
lands, and for railroad purposes, &c., should con-
tinue in the same proportion during the remaining
three quarters, the aggregate quantity of land dis-
posed of during the present year will be sixteen
and a half millions of acres.

The whole number of bounty land warrants
issued under the acts of February 11, 1847, Sep-
tember 28, 1850, and 22d March, 1852, is 223,007,
and the quantity of land called for by them is
22,428,400 acres. Of these warrants 121,026 have
been located, covering 14,802,040 acres, and there
are yet outstanding 101,981 warrants, which will
cover the further quantity of 7,626,360 acres.

A table accompanying the Commissioner's report presents a comprehensive view of the condition of the public lands in the several States.


In consequence of the allegations made in the year 1837 of errors and imperfections of the public surveys in the Greenburg district, in the State of Louisiana, the land office for that district has been virtually closed since that period. Many of the resurveys authorized by the act of 29th of August, 1842, having been completed, the necessary steps have been recently taken to bring these lands into market at as early a day as practicable.

Sufficient progress having been made in the be-public surveys in California and Oregon, I respect fully recommend the extension of the present land system over the agricultural lands, and the estab lishment of land offices for their disposal. With regard to the mineral lands in California, I beg leave to repeat the recommendations contained in my last annual report, with the modification that the privilege of mining be restricted to citizens of the United States, or those persons who may have declared their intention to become such.

It shows the entire area in square miles of each State, the quantity of land surveyed, and the quantity which remains yet to be surveyed; the number of acres which have been offered for sale; the number sold; the quantity embraced in donations; grants for schools, universities, asylums for the deaf and dumb; for internal improvements; to individuals and companies; for seats of government and public buildings; for military services; the quantity reserved for salines; for the benefit of Indians; for individuals, companies, and corporations; the area covered by confirmed private claims; the amount of swamp lands granted to each State; the quantity granted for railroad purposes; and the total area remaining unsold and unappropriated. The report of Dr. D. D. Owen, on the geology of Wisconsin, Iowa, and Minnesota, is now in press, in accordance with the directions of Congress, and a large number of copies will be delivered early in the session. It is believed that the


work itself, and the style of its publication, will be satisfactory to the public.

The final report of Messrs. Foster and Whitney on the geology of the Lake Superior region will probably be submitted to Congress during its ses


No progress has yet been made by the Department in the execution of the act of Congress of the last session providing for the redemption of Virginia land warrants with the United States scrip, receivable in payment for the public lands, the State of Virginia not having yet executed the deed of relinquishment, &c., required by the law. Shortly after the passage of the act I addressed the Governor of Virginia on the subject, and in reply was informed that it would be brought to the attention of the Legislature, which is now in session. As soon as the Department shall have been officially advised that the State of Virginia has complied with the terms of the law, prompt measures will be taken for its execution.


The report of the Commissioner of Pensions contains full and exact information in regard to the transactions of that office, with many valuable suggestions of amendments of the laws, which deserve the serious consideration of the Legislative Department of the Government.

This bureau has charge of the bounties conferred by Congress on those who have been engaged in the military service of the country, whether given in land or money.

Pensions or pecuniary bounties have been granted to six classes of persons.

First, to soldiers of the revolutionary war; second, to widows of revolutionary soldiers; third, to invalid soldiers; fourth, to widows and orphans of soldiers in the Mexican war; fifth, to certain classes of persons in the naval service; sixth, Vir ginia half pay and commutation claimants.

The whole number of pensioners now on the rolls exclusive of Navy pensioners, is 18,868, being 743 less than the number reported in 1851.

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The deaths of 823 pensioners of various classes have been reported within the last year.


The expenditure on account of pensions since the last report, as far as it can be ascertained from the Treasury Department, is about $1,500,000, embracing many claims allowed before the close of the last but paid within the present year,

The expense of the system continues nearly the same as in former years, nor is it likely to be diminished until Congress shall by further legislation apply the corrective to many of its abuses.

In my last report I called your attention to the propriety of amending the law so as to confine the benefits of the pension laws to those who rendered the service, and to the widows and minor children of such as were dead; and also to the necessity of adopting more efficient measures to prevent frauds under the various pension laws. As nothing was done by Congress in reference to either of these subjects, 1 respectfully present them again to your


There certainly can be no sufficient reason for giving to adult children or collateral relatives of a

Report of the Secretary of the Interior.

ceive $101,490, and 48 orphans, who receive

The half-pay claims examined and allowed un-
der the act of 5th July, 1832, since the date of the
last report, amount to $15,964 73. It is supposed
that few valid claims of this character are now
outstanding. Some, however, have been pre-
sented, which, for various causes, have been sus-

All claims for commutation pay continue suspended by my order until the further pleasure of Congress shall be made known on the subject. This order by its terms will remain in force until the close of the next session of Congress. If, in the mean time, no action shall be taken by Congress, it may become the duty of the Department to make such disposition of them as justice may seem to require.

32D CONG.....2D SESS.

deceased soldier a bounty for his military services. The policy of the law should be to assume, to some extent, the natural obligations of the deceased soldier to support his wife and minor children in the event of his death in the public service; but there can be no valid claim on the justice or bounty of the Government to go further and make provision for those whom he was under no obligation to support.

The enactment of more stringent laws to prevent the perpetration of frauds on the Government also demands the prompt and serious attention of Congress. Scarcely a month elapses without the detection and exposure of the basest attempts at imposition by fraud, perjury, and forgery.

In some parts of the country the business has been reduced to a system, and bodies of men have confederated for the purpose of carrying into effect their nefarious schemes, by means so artful as to render detection almost impossible.

No effort has been spared by the Department and the Pension Office to discover and frustrate the purposes of these miscreants, but in consequence of the defects in the law it is not always possible to bring them to justice.


In my last report I stated that the whole number of persons who had been pensioned under the act of 18th March, 1818, was 20,485, of whom 1,383 remained on the rolls. Since that date no new pensioners have been added under that law, and the number now remaining on the list is 1,046, showing a reduction of 337 within the year, and of those whose names still continue on it only 339 have received pensions during the first and second quarters of the current fiscal year.

Under the act of 15th May, 1828, which was passed for the benefit of officers and soldiers of the Continental army who served to the end of the war, only 1,168 were pensioned; of that number 128 are still on the rolls, but 42 only have been paid during the first and second quarters of the present year.

The system of revolutionary pensions was greatly extended by the act of 7th June, 1832. At the date of my last report 32,986 persons had received the benefits of that act, of whom 4,813 then continued on the rolls.

Since that date 80 new pensioners have been added, making the aggregate number of persons who had been pensioned under that law 33,066. Of these 4,328 remain on the rolls, but only 1,495 have received payment in the first and second quarters of the year, from which it may be fairly inferred that a large number have died within the year.

WIDOWS OF REVOLUTIONARY SOLDIERS. Under the law of 4th July, 1836, 5,163 persons have been pensioned, of whom 978 remain on the rolls. The act of 7th July, 1838, extended the pension laws to widows of revolutionay soldiers who were married prior to 1794. Under it 11,400 have from time to time been enrolled, but only 162 have been paid during the 1st and 2d quarters of the year.


The whole number of pensions granted under the various acts for the benefit of the widows and orphans of soldiers who were killed in battle, or died from disease contracted in the Mexican war, is 1,890, and the number now on the rolls is 1,123, being 627 less than at the date of my last report.


During the year ending 25th October, 1852, land
warrants have issued on account of revolutionary
claims, as follows:

3 for lieutenants, of 200 acres each.. 600 acres.
12 for non-commissioned officers and


A detailed statement of the Navy pensions accompanies the Commissioner's report, from which it will appear that there are now on the rolls 726 invalids, who receive annually $45,049 96.

There are also 514 widows, who annually re

soldiers, of 100 acres each........ 1,200 acres.
135 warrants of 160 acres each, is-
sued under the acts of Congress,
of December 24th, 1811, and Jan-
uary, 1812....

..21,600 acres.

And 7 warrants of 320 acres each, is-
sued under act of Congress of De-
cember 10, 1814, equal to....... 2,240 acres.
There have been issued in the same period 39
new certificates of right to locate land warrants of
160 acres each, which issued under acts of 24th
December, 1811, and 11th January, 1812, but for
which no patents have been granted, 6,240 acres.
Also, two new certificates of right to locate land
warrants of 320 acres each, under act of December
10, 1814, upon which no patent had issued, 640


The aggregate of warrants thus issued for revolutionary service, and service in the war of 1812, is 32,520 acres.

The number pensioned under the act of 2d January, 1848, is 6,000; and under the act of 29th July, 1848, which extended the period of marriage to the year 1800, the number pensioned was 975. There are now on the rolls under both these acts 5,230 pensioners, of whom 4,209 were paid during the first and second quarters of the year.

At the date of my last report the number on the rolls was 5,254. If, therefore, we assume the pay-by ments during the year as the basis for estimating the number who survive, it has been reduced to the extent of 1,045.

The amendments to the treaties with the Sioux Indians in Minnesota, which were proposed by the Senate, have been submitted to the proper authorities of the tribes and acceded to by them, and their title to a valuable district of country has thereby been extinguished.

amount to.....

Filed for scrip in lieu of land bounty.

MEXICAN WAR BOUNTY LAND ACT. The claims under the act of 11th February, 1847, known as the Mexican land bounty law, which were filed prior to the 31st October last, In consequence of the rejection of all the treaties ..89,377, which had been negotiated with the Indian tribes 4,347 resident in California and Oregon, our relations with them are of a very unsettled and precarious 93,724 character. It is believed that those treaties were rejected, not so much on account of objections to their details as to the leading principles embraced in them, which secured particular districts of country for the exclusive occupancy of the Indians. Until the Senate shall have announced some line of policy to be pursued on that subject, it would be worse than useless to attempt further negotiations. If the Indians are to be removed out of California and Oregon, it will be for Congress to say so, and to provide for them some place of refuge. Or if any particular districts of country within their limits, more remote from the settlements of the whites, are to be set apart for them, it is proper that Congress, which is alone invested with the power of disposing of the public domain, should make the necessary provisions on the subject.

Number of land warrants issued...83,08
Issued for money and scrip....... 3,234

Warrants issued for land..
Warrants for scrip or money.

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Leaving suspended, for various reasons.. 7,402
The operations during the year under the same
act are as follows, viz:
Applications for land.
For scrip or money.

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2,368 Suspended claims... 1,207 The number of appropriations under the act of 11th February, 1847, has increased in consequence of the repeal of the last proviso of the 9th section, the passage of the act of 22d March, 1852. BOUNTY LAND LAWS OF 28TH SEPTEMBER,

1850, AND 22D MARCH, 1852.


The execution of these laws have been steadily
progressing. Up to the present time the number
of cases received and registered amounts to about

Of which there have been admitted....140,058
Now on the files for examination.
Suspended for future proof... .. . . . .55,111
Warrants are issued daily for all admitted cases.
The number of new applications amounts to about
one hundred per day.

The quantity of land required to satisfy the war-
rants issued up to the 1st of November, 1832,
amounts to 9,935,320 acres, which, at the mini-

mum price of $1 25 per acre, would be worth $12.419,150.

Under the act of 224 March, 1852, there have been received and registered 7,655 cases, of which there have been admitted 2,341, leaving still to be acted on 5,314. To satisfy the claims issued under this act, 143,600 acres of land will be required.

The report of the Commissioner contains some important suggestions in regard to proposed changes in the laws relating to pensions. In addition to those already alluded to, I would invite your particular attention to the propriety of reenacting a provision requiring biennial examinations, by competent medical officers, of all invalid pensioners, and a report as to the condition of their health. The law of 1819 contained a provision of this kind which was found to work well in practice, but it was incautiously repealed by the act of 4th July, 1832. Some such measure is indispensable to protect the Government against imposition.

No material reduction has been made in the clerical force of the Pension Office since the date of my last report; but as the bounty land cases will soon be disposed of, the services of many of the clerks can be dispensed with at an early day.


For detailed information in regard to the condition of our Indian relations I respectfully refer to the report of the Commissioner of Indian Affairs. In my last annual communication I explained somewhat at large my views of the policy which should regulate our intercourse with the Indian tribes. It was in substance that our efforts should be directed to their civilization, and the amelioration of their condition, rather than to measures of coercion. It is not only more just and humane, but more economical, to win them by kindness, and to encourage them to engage in pastoral and agricultural pursuits and relinquish their nomadic and predatory life, than to subdue and restrain them by military force. I still adhere to these opinions, and respectfully refer to my last report for a more detailed exposition of them.

The Department has endeavored assiduously to conciliate the Indians by kindness, and to prevent those hostilities which we had just cause to apprehend. So far these efforts have been in a great measure successful. There is reason to fear, howdeclare by law what is to be the extent of the rights ever, that if measures are not speedily adopted to of the Indians, and to protect them from aggression, collisions and bloodshed will ensue.

The removal of the remnant of the tribe of the Seminole Indians has long been a cherished object of the Government, and the Department has spared no pains to accomplish it. Admonished by experience of the cost of blood and treasure which must attend the repetition of the attempt to expel them by military force, it was thought to be more consistent with humanity and sound policy to try the effect of peaceful measures. A special agent was therefore employed to go among them and endeavor to induce them to emigrate volun

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