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trict went in person to execute these processes. In the course of his duty he was actually fired upon, on the high road, by a body of armed men. Shortly after, other bodies of armed men (in the last instance amounting to several hundred persons) repeatedly attacked the house of the inspector of the revenue, with the declared intention of compelling him to renounce his office, and of obstructing the execution of the laws. One of these bodies of armed men made prisoner the marshal of the district, put him in jeopardy of his life, and did not release him till, for safety and to obtain his liberty, be engaged to forbear the further execution of the processes with which he was charged. In consequence of further requisitions and menaces of the insurgents, the marshal, together with the inspector of the revenue, have been since under the necessity of flying, secretly and by a circuitous route, from the scene of these transactions, towards the seat of government. An associate justice, pursuant to the provisions of the laws for that purpose, has, in the manner already stated, officially notified the President of the existence of combinations, in two of the counties of this State, to obstruct the execution of the laws, too powerful to be suppressed by the judiciary authority, or by the powers of the marshal.
Thus, then, is it unequivocally and in due form ascertained, in reference to the government of the United States, that the judiciary authority, after a fair and full experiment, has proved incompetent to enforce obedience to, or to punish infractions of, the laws; that the strength and audacity of certain lawless combinations have baffled and destroyed the efforts of the judiciary authority to recover penalties or inflict punishment; and that this authority, by a regular notification of this state of things, has, in the last resort, as an auxiliary of the civil authority, claimed the intervention of the military power of the United States. It results, from these facts, that the case exists whenaccording to the positions advanced by your excellency, in reference to the State government—when the military power may, with due regard to all the requisite cautions, be rightfully interposed; and that the interposition of this power is called for, not only by principles of a firm and energetic conduct on the part of the general government, but by the indispensable duty which the Constitution and the laws prescribe to the Executive of the United States. In this conclusion, your excellency's discernment, on mature reflection, cannot, it is presumed, fail to acquiesce; nor can it refuse its concurrence in the opinion which the President entertains, that he may reasonably expect, when called for, the zealous co-operation of the militia of Pennsylvania; that as citizens, friends to law and order, they may comply with the call, without any thing that can properly be denominated "a passive obedience to the mandates of government;" and that, as freemen, judging rightly of the cause and nature of the service proposed to them, they will feel themselves under the most sacred of obligations to accept and to perform it with alacrity. The theory of our political institutions knows no difference between the obligations of our citizens, in such a case, whether it relate to the government of this Union or of a State ; and it is hoped and confided, that a difference will be as little known to their affections or opinions.
Your excellency, it is also presumed, will as little doubt, on the like mature reflection, that in such a case the President could not, without an abdication of the undoubted rights and authorities of the United States, and of his duty, postpone the measures for which the laws of the United States provide, to a previous experiment of the plan, which is delineated in your letter.
The people of the United States have established a government for the management of their general interests; they have instituted executive organs for administering that government; and their representatives have established the rules by which these organs are to act. When their authority in that of their government is attacked, by lawless combinations of the citizens of part of a State, they could never be expected to approve that the care of vindicating their authority, of enforcing their laws, should be transferred from the officers of their own government to those of a State, and this to wait the issue of a process so undeterminate in its duration as that which it is proposed to pursue; comprehending a further and full experiment of the judiciary authority of the State, a proclamation “to declare the sentiments of its government, announce a determination to prosecute and punish offenders, and to exhort the citizens at large to pursue a peaceable and patriotic conduct;" the sending of commissioners “to address those who have embarked in the present combinations upon the lawless nature and ruinous tendency of their proceedings; to inculcate the necessity of an immediate return to the duty which they owe their country; and to promise, as far as the State is concerned, forgiveness of their past transactions, upon receiving a satisfactory assurance that, in future, they will submit to the laws;" and, finally, a call of the legislature of Pennsylvania, “ that the ultimate means of subduing the spirit of insurrection, and of restoring tranquillity and order, may be prescribed by their wisdom and authority.”
If there were no other objection to a transfer of this kind, the very important difference which is supposed to exist in the nature and consequences of the offences that have been committed, in the contemplation of the laws of the United States and those of Pennsylvania, would alone be a very serious obstacle. The paramount considerations which forbid an acquiescence in this course of proceeding, render it unnecessary to discuss the probability of its success; else it might have been proper to test the considerations which have been mentioned as a ground of hope, by the inquiry, what was the precise extent of the success of past experiments, and especially whether the execution of the revenue laws of Pennsylvania within the scene in question was truly and effectually accomplished by them, or whether they did not rather terminate in a tacit compromise, by which appearances only were saved ?
You are already, sir, advised that the President, yielding to the impressions which have been stated, has determined to take measures for calling forth the militia; and that these measures contemplate the assembling of a body of between twelve and thirteen thousand men, from Pennsylvania and the neighboring States of Virginia, Maryland, and New Jersey. The recourse thus early to the militia of the neighboring States, prevails from a probability
of the insufficiency of that of Pennsylvania alone to accomplish the object; your excellency having, in your conference with the President, confirmed the conclusion which was deducible from the known local and other circumstances of the State, by the frank and express declaration which you made of your conviction of that insufficiency in reference to the number which could be expected to be drawn forth for the purpose.
But, while the President has conceived himself to be under an indispensable obligation to prepare for that eventual resort, he has still consulted the sentiment of regret which he expressed to you, at the possible necessity of an appeal to arms; and to avert it, if practicable, as well as to manifest his attention to the principle, that "a firm and energetic conduct does not preclude the exercise of a prudent and humane policy," he has (as you have been also advised) concluded upon the measure of sending himself commissioners to the discontented counties, to make one more experiment of a conciliatory appeal to the reason, virtue and patriotism of their inhabitants; and has also signified to you how agreeable would be to him your co-operation in the same expedient, which you have been pleased to afford. It can scarcely be requisite to add, that there is nothing he has more at heart than that the issue of this experiment, by establishing the authority of the laws, may preclude the always calamitous necessity of an appeal to arms. It would plant a thorn in the remainder of his path through life, to have been obliged to employ force against fellow-citizens, for giving solidity and permanency to blessings which it has been his greatest happiness to co-operate with them in procuring for a much-loved country.
The President receives with much pleasure the assurance you have repeated to him, that whatever requisition he may make, whatever duty he may impose, in pursuance of his constitutional and legal powers, will; on your part, be promptly undertaken and faithfully discharged; and acknowledging, as an earnest of this, and even more, the measures of co-operation which you are pursuing, he assures you, in return, that he relies fully on the most cordial aid and support from you in every way which the Constitutions of the United States and of Pennsylvania shall authorize, and present or future exigencies may require.
And he requests that you will construe, with a reference to this assurance of his confidence, whatever remarks may have been made in the course of this reply to your letter, if it shall have happened that any of them have erred from a misconception of the sentiments and views which you may have meant to communicate. With perfect respect and esteem, I have the honer to be, &c.,
Secretary of State.
HAMILTON TO WASHINGTON.
August 12, 1794. The Secretary of the Treasury presents his respects to the President, and sends him two letters which were received last night from Pittsburgh.
Would it not be advisable to put the garrison of Fort Franklin in the power of Major Butler, so that if he deems it advisable he may draw a part of it to his aid?
An attack from the Indians appears at present improbable, and an attack from the insurgents probable enough.
The bearer of the letters waits orders to return. Will the President suggest any thing?
WASHINGTON TO HAMILTON.
GERMANTOWN, August 12, 1794. To the Secretary of the Treasury (acting for the Secretary of War).
Your letter of the 12th did not get to my hands until my return from Philadelphia about an hour ago.
The letters from Majors Butler and Baif, make it necessary in my opinion, to vest discretionary orders with the former, to