applaud or to condemn the conduct of the New England States in this period of 1808-15; the purpose is simply to recount what happened. The States interposed, and to a very large extent, they succeeded in obtaining the ends which they, as States, deemed so vitally important to their own interests: They undertook to nullify the whole series of acts relating to non-intercourse, non-importation, and embargo. Taking a strict construction of the constitutional provision relating to calling forth the militia, they succeeded in challenging national authority throughout the whole of the war. Their interposition was influential in defeating a conscription bill they regarded as unconstitutional; and when a corollary bill actually was approved, relating to the enlistment of minors, they effectively nullified it with State laws of their own. Until the day that news was received in Washington of Jackson's victory and the Treaty of Ghent, they were well on their way to achieving two of the most important objects sought by the Hartford Convention. Throughout this period, the interposing States repeatedly asserted, in the strongest and most unequivocal terms, their view of the Union as a confederacy in which the sovereignty and the broad reserved rights of the States must be respected. They did not hesitate to term actions of the Federal government "unconstitutional and void," and they laid down, as a deliberate and considered public policy, a program of steadfast resistance to what they deemed encroachments upon their powers.
The Bank of the United States
SOME of the greatest embarrassments of the Madison administration during the War of 1812 stemmed from the inability of the government efficiently to finance its operations. The charter of the first Bank of the United States expired in 1811, and a hostile