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I believe I am in your debt a letter or two, which is owing to my occupations in relation to the elections &c. These are now over in this state, but the result is not known. All depends upon Albany where both sides claim the victory. Our doubts will not be removed till the latter end of the month. I hope your expectations of Virginia have not diminished. Respecting the first volume of Publius...
Some days since I wrote to you, My Dear Sir, inclosing a letter from a Mr. V Der Kemp &c. I then mentioned to you that the question of a majority for or against the constitution would depend upon the County of Albany. By the latter accounts from that quarter I fear much that the issue there has been against us. As Clinton is truly the leader of his party, and is inflexibly obstinate I count...
I acknowlege my delinquency in not thanking you before for your obliging letter from Richmond. But the truth is that I have been so overwhelmed in avocations of one kind or another that I have scarcely had a moment to spare to a friend. You I trust will be the less disposed to be inexorable, as I hope you believe there is no one for whom I have more inclination than yourself—I mean of the male...
[ New York, May 21, 1788. On this date Hamilton submitted a bill to New York State. Document not found ]. ADS , sold by Samuel Freeman, November 18, 1924, lot 167.
That the persons intitled to lands by virtue of such warrants shall be at liberty to locate them on any part of the two tracts or districts of land reserved and set apart for the purpose of satisfying the military bounties due to the late army provided that each location be made either in contact with some point or part of the external boundary of the said tracts respectively or of some prior...
To the People of the State of New-York. WE proceed now to an examination of the judiciary department of the proposed government. In unfolding the defects of the existing confederation, the utility and necessity of a federal judicature have been clearly pointed out. It is the less necessary to recapitulate the considerations there urged; as the propriety of the institution in the abstract is...
To the People of the State of New-York. NEXT to permanency in office, nothing can contribute more to the independence of the judges than a fixed provision for their support. The remark made in relation to the president, is equally applicable here. In the general course of human nature, a power over a man’s subsistence amounts to a power over his will . And we can never hope to see realised in...
To the People of the State of New-York. TO judge with accuracy of the proper extent of the federal judicature, it will be necessary to consider in the first place what are its proper objects. It seems scarcely to admit of controversy that the judiciary authority of the union ought to extend to these several descriptions of causes. 1st. To all those which arise out of the laws of the United...
To the People of the State of New-York. LET us now return to the partition of the judiciary authority between different courts, and their relations to each other. “The judicial power of the United States is (by the plan of the convention) to be vested in one supreme court, and in such inferior courts as the congress may from time to time ordain and establish.” Article 3. Sec. 1. That there...
To the People of the State of New-York. THE erection of a new government, whatever care or wisdom may distinguish the work, cannot fail to originate questions of intricacy and nicety; and these may in a particular manner be expected to flow from the establishment of a constitution founded upon the total or partial incorporation of a number of distinct sovereignties. ’Tis time only that can...
To the People of the State of New-York. THE objection to the plan of the convention, which has met with most success in this state, and perhaps in several of the other states, is that relative to the want of a constitutional provision for the trial by jury in civil cases. The disingenuous form in which this objection is usually stated, has been repeatedly adverted to and exposed; but continues...
To the People of the State of New-York. IN the course of the foregoing review of the constitution I have taken notice of, and endeavoured to answer, most of the objections which have appeared against it. There however remain a few which either did not fall naturally under any particular head, or were forgotten in their proper places. These shall now be discussed; but as the subject has been...
To the People of the State of New-York. ACCORDING to the formal division of the subject of these papers, announced in my first number, there would appear still to remain for discussion, two points, “the analogy of the proposed government to your own state constitution,” and “the additional security, which its adoption will afford to republican government, to liberty and to property.” But these...
You will no doubt have understood that the Antifederal party has prevailed in this State by a large majority. It is therefore of the utmost importance that all external circumstances should be made use of to influence their conduct. This will suggest to you the great advantage of a speedy decision in your State, if you can be sure of the question, and a prompt communication of the event to us....
In my last I think I informed you that the elections had turned out, beyond expectation, favourable to the Antifœderal party. They have a majority of two thirds in the Convention and according to the best estimate I can form of about four sevenths in the community. The views of the leaders in this City are pretty well ascertained to be turned towards a long adjournment say till next spring or...
Yesterday, My Dear Sir, The Convention made a house. That day and this have been spent in preliminary arrangements. Tomorrow we go into a Committee of the whole on the Constitution. There is every appearance that a full discussion will take place, which will keep us together at least a fortnight. It is not easy to conjecture what will be the result. Our adversaries greatly outnumber us. The...
I Various Interests Navigating and Non Navigating— Great and Small— Struggle for Commercial point two thirds Struggle for equal power— Some small states non navigating— Hence tendency to combination Necessity of accommodation— Oeconomy— Relate difficulties on this point As to the ratios of representation I Character of slaves mixed persons & property II In many states persons included in census...
The hon. Mr. Hamilton then rose. Mr. Chairman the honorable Member, who spoke yesterday, went into an explanation of a variety of circumstances to prove the expediency of a change in our national government, and the necessity of a firm union: At the same time he described the great advantages which this State, in particular, receives from the confederacy, and its peculiar weaknesses when...
The Gentleman who spoke yesterday has been treated as having dealt in the flowry Fields of Immagination I agree if this Governt. is dangerous to the Liberties of the People let us reject it— Tho no Considerations of Danger should induce us to adopt a Governmt. radically bad—yet it was prudent to weigh those Moti[v]es which might induce us to attend those Considerations which involve public...
The Govt. is to be rejected if bad. Not call reasoning, declamation. Radical defect of the Constitution is, that it operates upon individuals not on States. This proved from experience. In the war, patriotism operd. in the room of goverment— On record by Resolutions of both the principle admitted. Several States will be delinqt. at the same time, and therefore will not coerce. Suppose one...
I thank you My beloved for your letter by the Post. I have time only to tell you that I am well and to request to be remembered to your sister & to Mrs. Mitchell Adieu My beloved. ALS , Hamilton Papers, Library of Congress. Letter not found. Ann Venton Mitchell, H’s cousin, had been known to him during his boyhood on St. Croix in the West Indies.
I thank you for your letter of the 9th. instant and am glad to learn that you think the chance is in your favour. I hope no disagreeable change may happen. Yet I own I fear something from your indisposition. Our debate here began on the clause respecting the proportion of representation &c. which has taken up two days. Tomorrow I imagine we shall talk about the power over elections. The only...
Mr. Hamilton then reassumed his argument. When, said he, I had the honor to address the committee yesterday, I gave a history of the circumstances which attended the Convention, when forming the Plan before you. I endeavored to point out to you the principles of accommodation, on which this arrangement was made; and to shew that the contending interests of the States led them to establish the...
I endeavoured to Shew that the Contending Interests of the States produced that Compromise— That it would finally produce Safety— That all Attempts to vary that Clause will be useless— That it will finally from Circumstances & Cause produce a sufficient Represantation— I Contend that 65 & 24 will [be] sufficient for the Safety of the Country—the [number] will encrease—in 20 or 25 years be 200...
Mr. Hamilton. Agrees with me in the first principle of a broad basis. It resulted from compromise. secure at present. 3 years. fallacy—the body havg. a permt. Int. The Int. not for it. Public opinion governs ye people in France. The Argument from public opinion concludes to any thing. The numbers of the State will be diminishd. It may be the case accordy. to ye States. The State governments...
Mr. Hamilton   I do contend that this Constitution is a federal Republic. John McKesson MS Notes, New-York Historical Society, New York City. In the McKesson account of Melancton Smith’s second speech of June 21 this statement by H is included. It is preceded by the following statement by Smith: “When the People do chuse their Rulers—must not these rulers in a Republic be a complete...
The Hon. Mr. Hamilton . Mr. Chairman I rise to take notice of the observations of the hon. member from Ulster. I imagine the objections he has stated, are susceptible of a complete and satisfactory refutation. But before I proceed to this, I shall attend to the arguments advanced by the gentlemen from Albany and Dutchess. These arguments have been frequently urged, and much confidence has been...
Under the present Confederation 26 Men may do every thing that the proposed Governmt. may do—and 18 of these may form a Majority— Under the new Governmt. the proportionate Streng[t]h in the Legislature is gain[e]d because the Vote per Capite— —Members will attend as their State Constitutents will require it—As to the Albany Member The Representation ought to be small because you will more...
Mr. Hamilton . I only rise to observe that the gentleman has misunderstood me. What I meant to express was this; that if we argued from possibilities only; if we reasoned from chances, or an ungovernable propensity to evil, instead of taking into view the controul, which the nature of things, or the form of the constitution provided; the argument would lead us to withdraw all confidence from...
The honorable Mr. Hamilton . It is not my design, Mr. Chairman, to extend this debate by any new arguments on the general subject. I have delivered my sentiments so fully on what has been advanced by the gentlemen this morning, that any further reasonings from me will be easily dispensed with. I only rise to state a fact, with respect to the motives which operated in the general convention. I...
It is true the great object of the Smaller States was an equal Suffrage in Senate—but some of them also wished to retain what advantages in Suffrage the[y] Could in the other House. I was absent 10 days—found on Return the plan as it now is—A Motion was made to encrease the Numbers—It was declared that the Number was the Effect of Compromise—New Hampshire & the South declared the difficulty of...
Mr. Hamilton . I recollect well the alteration which the gentleman alludes to; but, it by no means militates against my idea of the principles on which the convention acted at the time the report of the committee was under deliberation. This alteration did not take place till the convention was near rising, and the business compleated; when his excellency the president expressing a wish that...
Lansing … mode of appointment duration in office means of controul— Chancellor— Senators equally interested in preserving the residuary powers— Senate intended as representation of the sovereignties of the states— Therefore ought to be dependent. { States have never exercised power of rotation— Rotation in Congress has been valuable— Parties have been extinguished— Will not have less...
Honorable Mr. Hamilton . I am persuaded, Mr. Chairman, that I in my turn, shall be indulged, in addressing the committee. We all, with equal sincerity, profess to be anxious for the establishment of a republican government, on a safe and solid basis. It is the object of the wishes of every honest man in the United States, and I presume I shall not be disbelieved, when I declare, that it is an...
We all Aim at the best Govt. We should mix the Happy Ingredients, and not go into Extremes or we shall build Utopia upon Utopia— It was a time of Jealo[u]sy—We seemed to have attended only to tie the Representat Another Prin. To have in our Govt. some Stable Body that will pursue a System— Guard agt. Innovations and know and direct public Affairs— The People of every Country desire the...
The mind at ye Revolution run into extremes—the extreme was, we consulted nothing but to tie the Representative to ye people. A Stable body wh. oppurtunty. to know guard ags. instability The people of every country desire its prosperity but want information. Frequently misled by artful Men. Concilliate two objects. One Body who shall be closely united to the people, this in the Representative....
I am very sorry to find by your letter of the 13th that your prospects are so critical. Our chance of success here is infinitely slender, and none at all if you go wrong. The leaders of the Antifederalists finding their part seems somewhat squeamish about rejection, are obliged at present to recur to the project of conditional amendments. We are going on very deliberately in the discussion and...
The Hon. Mr. Hamilton . Mr. Chairman, in debates of this kind it is extremely easy, on either side, to say a great number of plausible things. It is to be acknowledged, that there is even a certain degree of truth in the reasonings on both sides. In this situation, it is the province of judgment and good sense to determine their force and application, and how far the arguments advanced on one...
The Principles laid down on both Sides may be true to a certain Extent— Each appears plausible and have a certain degree of force We must then determine where one principle must give way to another— We Should combine the Principles which will [give] Stability on one Side—and Safety to the Interests of the People on the other Side The Argumts. applied here to the Senate should be applied to the...
Mr. Hamilton—The Genl. Intent of the Clause is Suppose what is expressed in the Resolution proposed— Mr. Hamilton   If that is the opinion of the Committee—there will be no debate on the Question— John McKesson MS Notes, New-York Historical Society, New York City. There is no record of these statements by H in any of the other accounts of the debates of June 25. H’s statements followed these...
Mr Hamilton—This matter was fully debated in the Convention and left ⟨–⟩. It will not be strenuously insisted on either side. John McKesson MS Notes, New-York Historical Society, New York City. There is no record of this statement by H in any of the other accounts of the debates of June 26. H’s statement followed these remarks by John Lansing, Jr.: “It appears that this Clause was intended to...
A day or two ago General Schuyler at my request sent forward to you an express with an account of the adoption of the Constitution by New Hampshire. We eagerly wait for further intelligence from you, as our only chance of success depends on you. There are some slight symptoms of relaxation in some of the leaders; which authorises a gleam of hope, if you do well; but certainly I think not...
Mel Smith Powers ought to be precisely defined— Peculiarly so in a government of the particular kind. Ought to rest as well for operation as organisation— Harmony . Money necessary to existence of both— Interference or clashing of power— And one must fall a sacrifice to the other. No limitation to discretion of legislature— State Governments & G Government have concurrent jurisdiction in all...
The hon. Mr. Hamilton . This is one of those subjects, Mr. Chairman, on which objections very naturally arise, and assume the most plausible shape. Its address is to the passions, and its first impressions create a prejudice, before cool examination has an opportunity for exertion. It is more easy for the human mind to calculate the evils, than the advantages of a measure; and vastly more...
It is more natural to the Mind of man to examine the Powers by which money is to be taken from him—than the necessity or reasons of those powers— In Regard to the Safety and Liberty of the People you are to constitute it to preserve Liberty with Power to preserve it self and with sufficient Checks— 1. This Govt. has represents elected only for two years—this the peoples Govt. 2d. A Senate for...
It is natural to suspect such a power—of money—more than necessity of govt. Men predjudiced. Have read govt.—wrong Ideas—his Ideas to give a safe and equal repr—no danger to entrust rulers in Republics. Owes it origin to the present times. This a Republic Govt— One part to be chosen by ye. people for two years. The next chosen for 6 years by peoples Repre. The presid. chosen imediately by ye...
The hon. Mr. Hamilton . Mr. Chairman, in the course of these debates, it has been suggested, that the state of New-York has sustained peculiar misfortunes, from the mode of raising revenues by requisitions. I believe we shall now be able to prove, that this state, in the course of the late revolution, suffered the extremes of distress on account of this delusive system. To establish these...
Mr. Hamilton—Requests several Resolutions & reports from the Journal of the Senate be read— 7 Septr. 1780—part of the Governors message— 9 Septr. part of the Answer of the Senate 10 Octr. Resolution of assembly page 33 5th Feby 1781—and a Letter from Rivingtons Paper 19 March 29 March 1781 21 Novr 1781 20 July 1782 Resolutions John McKesson MS Notes, New-York Historical Society, New York City....
Mr. Hamilton . We shall make the same reservation. By the indisputable construction of these resolutions, we shall prove that this state was once on the verge of destruction, for want of an energetic government. To this point we shall confine ourselves. Childs, Debates and Proceedings of the Convention of the State of New-York The Debates and Proceedings of the State of New-York, Assembled at...
Mr. Hamilton . The honorable gentleman from Ulster has given a turn to the introduction of those papers, which was never in our contemplation. He seems to insinuate that they were brought forward, with a view of shewing an inconsistency in the conduct of some gentlemen—perhaps of himself. Sir, the exhibition of them had a very different object. It was to prove that this state once experienced...