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CONSIDERATIONS

ON THE

BANK OF NORTH AMERICA.

PUBLISHED IN THE YEAR 1785.

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CONSIDERATIONS, &c. a

AN attack is made on the credit and institution of the Bank of North America. Whether this attack is justified by the principles of law and sound policy, is a natural sube ject of inquiry. The inquiry is as necessary and interesting, as it is natural: for, though some people represent the bank as injurious and dangerous, while others consider it as salutary and beneficial to the community, all view it as an object of high importance; deserving and demanding the publick attention.

In the investigation of this subject, it will be requisite to discuss some great and leading questions concerning the constitution of the United States, and the relation which subsists between them and each particular state in

a The publication of these considerations was occasioned by a bill, introduced into the legislature of Pennsylvania, to repeal an act of assembly passed in the year 1782, by which a charter of incorporation had been granted to the Bank of North America. The bill was passed into a law, in September 1785. Ed.

the Union. Perhaps it is to be wished that this discussion nad not been rendered necessary; and that those questions had rested some time longer among the arcana imperii: but they are now presented to the publick ; and the publick should view them with firmness, with impartiality, and with all the solicitude befitting such a momentous occasion,

A gentleman, who had the best opportunities of observing, and who possesses the best talents for judging on the subject, informs his fellow citizens officially, that “it may be not only asserted, but demonstrated, that, “ without the establishment of the national bank, the busi“ness of the department of finance could not have been “performed” in the late war.

The millennium is not yet come. War, with all the horrours and miseries in his train, may revisit us. The finances may again be deranged: “publick credit may,

again, be at an end: no means may be afforded adequate "to the publick expenses.” Is it wise or politick to deprive our country, in such a situation, of a resource, which happy experience has shown to be of such essential importance? Will the citizens of the United States be encouraged to embark their fortunes on a similar bottom in a future war, by seeing the vessel, which carried us so successfully through the last, thrown aside, like a useless hulk, upon the return of peace ?

* It will not be improper to recal to our remembrance the origin, the establishment, and the proceedings of the Bank of North America.

to Vide the preface to the statement of the accounts of the Unitet States.

In May, 1781, the superintendant of finance laid before congress a plan of a bank. On the 26th of that month, congress passed the following resolution con. cerning it.

“ Resolved, That congress do approve of the plan for establishing a national bank in these United States, submitted to their consideration by Mr. Robert Morris, the 17th May, 1781, and that they will promote and support the same by such ways and means, from time to time, as may appear necessary for the institution, and consistent with the publick good.

“ That the subscribers to the said bank shall be incorporated, agreeably to the principles and terms of the plan, under the name of "The President, Directors, and Company of the Bank of North America,” iso soon as the subscription shall be filled, the directors and president chosen, and application made to congress for that purpose, by the president and directors elected.

“Resolved, That it be recommended to the several States, by proper laws for that purpose, to provide that no other bank or bankers shall be established or permitted within the said states respectively during the war.

“Resolved, That the notes hereafter to be issued by the said bank, payable on demand, shall be receivable in payment of all taxes, duties, and debts, due or that

may become due or payable to the United States.

“ Resolved, that congress will recommend to the several legislatures to pass laws, making it felony without benefit of clergy, for any person to counterfeit bank

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