Martin van Buren photo

Special Message

January 17, 1839

To the Senate and House of Representatives:

I herewith communicate to Congress a letter from the Secretary of the Treasury, in respect to the Florida claims under the treaty of 1819 and the subsequent acts of Congress passed to enforce it.

The propriety of some additional legislation on this subject seems obvious. The period when the evidence on the claims shall be closed ought, in my opinion, to be limited, as they are already of long standing, and, as a general consequence, the proof of their justice every day becoming more and more unsatisfactory.

It seems also that the task of making the final examination into the justice of the awards might advantageously be devolved upon some other officer or tribunal than the Secretary of the Treasury, considering the other responsible, laborious, and numerous duties imposed on him at the present juncture.


Martin van Buren, Special Message Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project

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