The predictions that were so confidently made of the ruin that would overspread the land, if the charter were not renewed, had their intended effect on some of the democratic members. But, after a full discussion, the bill was indefinitely postponed on the 24th of January, 1811, in the House of Representatives, by a vote of 65 to 64. The National Intelligence said, on recording the vote, that if the question had not been on the indefinite postponement, but “In the history of nations, as well as of individuals, there are to be found occasional moments of frenzy, in which every movement baffles the calculations of the politician, the moralist and the philosopher. To the distractions and derangement of our affairs with the European worm we are, with almost incredible folly, preparing, by allowing the charter of the Bank of the United States to expire, to add an awful scene of internal disorder and confusion, of private and public bankruptcy. I have gone over my calculations anew; sifted the facts on which my opinions are founded: turned them in every possible point of view, to discover errors if any there were. But the result of every examination has been an invariable conviction of the reality of the danger, the momentary frenzy of too many of my fellow-citizens, and the awful consequences of the prevailing apathy, if it should continue.” By the next session of Congress, Mr. Carey’s fears were in no degree abated, as will be seen by the following extract from another pamphlet, published December 15th, uni, and entitled “Nine Letters to Dr. Adam Seybert, Representative in Congress for the City of Philadelphia.” “Nevel have I addressed my fellow-citizens with more solicitude than I feel at present. The question at issue, respecting the renewal of the charter of the Bank of the United States, in its consequences upon the character of the country, and upon the prosperity and happiness of a large portion of its most valuable citizens, I conceive to be of more importance than anyone that has been agitated for twenty years.” He then intimates to members of Congress from parts of the country remote from the operations of Banking, “that they are liable to be be· wilder ed and led astray; to be instrumental in dashing the Bank of public credit upon rocks and quicksands, and producing an awful scene of destruction, the consequences or terminations of which elude the power of calculation. At such a crisis, it behaves every m:m whose experience in any degree qualifies him to shed light upon the subject, to step boldly forward, and use his endeavors to preserve so many vital interests as are at stake from the destruction which menaces them. In such a cause, indifference and guilt would perhaps be synonymous. Influenced by these motives, and unalterably convinced of the reality of the impending min, I resolved, at the risk of the abuse, the calumny, the malignity, and the persecution, to which every man is liable, who, on such occasions, takes an active part, to raise my feeble voice in décence of a good Callie. I fully resolved that, come the calamity when it might, I should be able to wash my hands from any participation in the guilt, evel1 by neutrality.”
on the passage of the bill, the majority would have been much greater. Another bill was brought before the Senate; but, on the 20th of February, the first section was struck out by the casting vote of the Vice President, George Clinton. The Senate gave this vote, which was equivalent to a rejection of the bill, only eleven dayg before the charter expired. The Bank made application in this interval for such an extension of its charter as would enable it to wind up its concerns. But the Committee of the House to whom the memorial was referred, reported, through their Chairman, Mr. Henry Clay, “that, holding the opinion, (as a majority df the Committee do,) that the Constitution did not authorize Congress originally to grant the charter, it follows as a necessary consequence of that opinion, than an extension of it, even under the restrictions contemplated by the stockholders, is equally repugnant to the Constitution.”* Trustees were then appointed, and they proceeded so rapidly in winding up the concerns of the Bank, that on the 1st of June, 1812, they paid over to the stockholders 70 per cent. of the capital stock, and 18 per cent. more on the 1st of October.
Necessary cookies are absolutely essential for the website to function properly. This category only includes cookies that ensures basic functionalities and security features of the website. These cookies do not store any personal information.
Any cookies that may not be particularly necessary for the website to function and is used specifically to collect user personal data via analytics, ads, other embedded contents are termed as non-necessary cookies. It is mandatory to procure user consent prior to running these cookies on your website.