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will meet on Thursday, February 1st, at half past 7 o'clock, p. m., in the rooms of the Hon. Mr. Witte, at the National Hotel.
The presence of an authorized representation of the Board, during the investigation of the matters referred to the committee, would aid us in the performance of the duty imposed by the order of the House of Representatives. Very respectfully, yours,
CHARLES W. UPHAM,
Chairman. Professor Joseph HENRY,
Secretary of the Smithsonian Institution.
JANUARY 27, 1855. SIR: I have the honor to inform you that your communication in behalf of the Special Committee of the House of Representatives, stating that “the presence of an authorized representation of the Board during the investigation of the matters referred to the committee would aid you “in the performance of the duty imposed by the order of the House of Representatives," was duly received and laid before the Board of Regents of the Smithsonian Institution at their meeting today.
Whereupon on motion, it was resolved that a committee of five members of the Board should be appointed to confer with the Special Committee of the House of Representatives.
Messrs. James A. Pearce, James M. Mason, Richard Rush, A. D. Bache, and Joseph Henry, were appointed that committee. I have the honor to remain, very respectfully, your obedient servant,
Secretary Smithsonian Institution. Hon. C. W. UPHAM, Chairman Committee of the House of Representatives
on the Smithsonian Institution, sc.
HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES,
Washington City, January 29, 1855. Sir: The Select Committee of the House of Representatives, instructed to inquire into the administration of the Smithsonian Institution, respectfully request your presence at a meeting of the committee, to be held on Thursday evening, February 1, at half past seven o'clock, at the rooms of the Hon. Mr. Witte, in the National Hotel, of this city, and at all subsequent meetings for the investigation of said subject.
Yours, very respectfully,
CHARLES W. UPHAM, Chairman. Hon. STEPHEN A. DOUGLAS,
United States Senatc. Copies of the above letter were also addressed to Hon. James Meacham, Hon. Wm. H. English, Hon. David Stuart, and Jobn T. Towers, esq., mayor of Washington city.
HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES,
Washington City, January 30, 1855. Sir: I herewith transmit to you “Mis. Doc., No. 18, House of Representatives, 33d Congress, 2d session."
The committee have commenced the discharge of their duty, under the order of the House. Any communication you may think proper to make, touching the subject of inquiry committed to us, in your letter of the 13th, addressed to the President of the Senate and the Speaker of the House of Representatives, and in the resolution of the House of the 17th of January, will be respectfully considered by the committee.
Your obedient servant,
CHARLES W. UPHAM, Chairman. Hon. Rufus CHOATE, Boston, Massachusetts.
HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES,
Washington City, February 2, 1855. SIR: Al a meeting of the Select Committee of the House of Representatives on the Smithsonian Institution, held last evening, it was voted, on motion of the Hon. Mr. Witte, “ that the Hon. Mr. Meacham, the offerer of the resolution on which the committee was appointed, be requested to furnish the committee with specifications of the particulars in which be thinks the Smithsonian Institution has been managed, and its funds expended not in accordance with the law establishing said Institution."
The committee appearing, in behalf of the majority in the Board of Regents, requested that such specifications should be presented.
Please to enclose the specifications you may prepare to my address, at as early a moment as may be compatible with your convenience. Yours respectfully,
CHARLES W. UPHAM. Hon. JAMES MEACHAM.
HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES,
Washington City, February 15, 1855. DEAR SIR: I have just received a letter, of which the following is a copy:
“HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES, February 15, 1855. “SIR: I ask that Professor J. Henry present to your committee, at their next meeting, the paper of Professor C. C. Jewett, which was presented to the Committee of the Regents, at their request; and I ask also, that the secretary be required to indicate to your committee the offensive parts of said paper that were the cause of removing Professor Jewett from the Institution. “ Your obedient servant,
J. MEACHAM. “ Hon. C. W. UPHAM,
“Chairman of Select Committee on Smithsonian Institution.” I communicate it that you may be prepared to bring with you tomorrow evening the document called for, for the purpose mentioned by Mr. Meacham. Your obedient servant,
CHARLES W. UPHAM. Professor HENRY.
JOURNAL OF THE COMMITTEE. In pursuance of the foregoing resolution, a meeting of the committee named was notified in the room of the Committee on Post Offices and Post Roads of the House of Representatives, on Saturday, the 20th day of January, 1855, when the following members appeared : Hon. c. w. Upham, Hon. D. Wells, jr., and Hon. R. C. Puryear. Without transactig any business the committee adjourned to meet at the same place on Monday morning, the 22d instant, at 104 o'clock, a. m.
MONDAY, JANUARY 22, 1855. Committee met pursuant to adjournment. Present: Messrs. Upham, Wells, Puryear, and Taylor. After transacting some further preliminary business the meeting adjourned to the room of Hon. C. 'W. Upham at 7} o'clock, p. m.
Committee met pursuant to adjournment. Present: Messrs. Upham, Wells, Puryear, and Witte. The will of Smithson and the act of Congress establishing the Smithsonian Institution were read by the chairman. After various discussions as to the powers and duties of the committee, the clerk was directed to enclose copies of the resolution of the House of Representatives ordering a committee to investigate the affairs of the Smithsonian Institution, adopted in the House of Representatives on the 17th January, 1855, to Professor Joseph Henry, secretary of the Institution, and to the Hon. James Meacham, and request their attendance before the committee at the room of the Committee on Post Offices and Post Roads of the House of Representatives, on Thursday evening, the 25th instant, at half past seven o'clock. The committee then adjourned to meet at the place and time above designated.
TUESDAY MORNING, JANUARY 23, 1855. Notified Hon. James Meacham and Professor Henry to attend meeting.
THURSDAY EVENING, JANUARY 25, 1855. Committee met pursuant to adjournment.
Present: Messrs. Upham, Puryear, Wells, and Witte. Professor Henry and Mr. Meacham appeared before the committee.
Professor Henry.-Has the official journal from the establishment of the institution. Came in charge, as secretary, end of 1846. The “establishment” met once during the administration of General Taylor, and not again until President Pierce came into office. No action by the establishment in reference to Institution during Taylor's administration. There have been several meetings since General Pierce's term commenced. Doings are published in the report of the Institution.
Mr. Choate's letter read. Also, resolution appointing the committee.
Mr. Meacham stated that he had no new matter to communicate. Has made a report, which is published in the report of the Institution.
Professor Henry stated that ihe regents would meet Saturday, (27th,)
and would probably appoint a committee to wait on this committee. The clerk was directed to notify the regents of the next meeting of the committee, and that they would be pleased to have the Board represented before them. Adjourned to meet at the room of the Hon. W. H. Witte at the National hotel, on Monday evening, January 29, at 7} o'clock.
THURSDAY EVENING, FEBRUARY 1, 1855.
On motion of Mr. Wells, the committee resolved to meet on Saturday, Monday, and Thursday next, at 74 o'clock, at the National Hotel.
On motion, the memorial of Lorin Blodgett was referred to Mr. Well; and Mr. Puryear.
On motion of Mr. Witte, in pursuance of a suggestion of Senator Mason, it was voted that Hon. James Meacham, the offerer of the resolution under which this committee was appointed, be requested to furnish this committee with specifications of the particulars in which he thinks the Smithsonian Institution has been managed and its funds expended not in accordance with the law establishing it, and that the clerk furnish the Board of Regents with a copy of the same.
Adjourned to Saturday evening, February 3, at 73, p. m.
SATURDAY EVENING, FEBRUARY 3, 1855.
In answer to questions by chairman, Professor Henry stated as follows: Keeps the records of the “establishment." There have been four or five meetings. First meeting was during the administration of General Taylor. There was no meeting during Mr. Fillmore's administration. The Board of Regents was appointed in August, 1846. There has been a decision that the Institution cannot be sued. There have been four meetings of the establishment since General Pierce's administration. They have never taken any distinct action in reference to the Institution. Have a code of by-laws. Chief Justice of the United States and the Vice President are members of the establishment. Have stated meetings of the establishment. By-laws provide for stated meetings. Money of the Institution is still in the hands of the government. (Witness exhibited first record of the meeting of the regents of the Institution.] Have a treasurer of the Board who disburses without pay. All the proceedings of the Board of Regents have been published. Board of Regents usually meet about every fortnight during the sessions of Congress. Vice President Dallas remained chancellor during his administration. Since then Chief Justice Taney. The Executive Committee has the chief management of the Institution. The building was erected under the direction of Building Committee. The provision requiring every author of copy-right to
deposit one copy with Institution has not fully been complied with. Section sixth of the act has not been complied with. Congress has not yet imposed it on the Institution. The Commissioner of Patents has at present control of the matter.
After some remarks from Messrs. 'Taylor, Witte, and the chairman, adjourned, on motion of Mr. Taylor, to Monday evening, at the same time and place.
MONDAY EVENING, FEBRUARY 5, 1855.
Committee met pursuant to adjournment.
Witnesses : Henry and Meacham, and Senators Pierce and Mason appeared in behalf of the Institution.
Hon. James Meacham submitted specifications, as requested by resolution of the committee :
WASHINGTON, February 4, 1855. Dear Sir: As chairman of a Select Committee of the House of Representatives to inquire into the administration of the Smithsonian Institution, you ask of me specifications of departure from the existing law, and of the necessity of additional legislation. In compliance with your request, I give you the following, and am your obedient servant,
J. MEACHAM. Hon. CHARLES W. UPHAM.
Departure from existing law.
1. Congress established the Smithsonian Institution for the faithful execution of Smithson's trust, “ according to the will of the donor," by a certain act approved August 10, 1846.
In this act, Congress directed a manner (as in the act of July 1, 1836, it had promised to do) in which the funds should be applied."
By this act, a majority of the funds were to be appropriated to the library. This is proved
1. By the evident design of the Congress that passed the law. They refused to limit the maximum sum to be devoted to that object at a less sum than $25,000, though repeated efforts were made for a less sum.
2. By the terms of the law itself, that fixes the sum at ar. average of $25,000, and shows the intent that such, or near that sum, should be expended on the library. They certainly were not sporting with an imaginary sum.
3. By the decision of the Board of Regents, who, on December 4. 1846, voted that $20,000 be appropriated for the library - for the present.” This showed their understanding of the act.—(See 1st Report, page 12.)
4. By the compromise which divided the income equally between the library and the museum on the one hand, and publications and re