Perley's Reminiscences of Sixty Years in the National Metropolis - Vol. 1

By Ben: Perley Poore | Go to book overview

CHAPTER VII.
THE KITCHEN CABINET.

JACKSON'S FIRST ANNUAL MESSAGE--THE KITCHEN CABINET--BLAIR, OF
THE GLOBE--WASHINGTON NEWSPAPERS AND NEWS--THE FIRST LADY-
BIRD OF THE PRESS--NATHANIEL P. WILLIS--PETER FORCE--SOCIAL
ENJOYMENTS--MRS. TROLLOPE ON WASHINGTON SOCIETY--ATTEMPT
TO OUST A VETERAN FROM OFFICE--PAYMENT OF THE CLAIMS ON
FRANCE.

WHEN the Twenty-first Congress assembled, on the 7th of December, 1829, General Jackson sent in his first annual message, which naturally attracted some attention. Meeting his old and intimate friend, General Armstrong, the next day, the President said, "Well, Bob, what do the people say of my message?""They say," replied General Armstrong, "that it is first-rate, but nobody believes that you wrote it.""Well," good-naturedly replied Old Hickory, "don't I deserve just as much credit for picking out the man who could write it?" Although the words of this and of the subsequent messages were not General Jackson's, the ideas were, and he always insisted on having them clearly expressed. It was in his first message, by the way, that he invited the attention of Congress to the fact that the charter of the United States Bank would expire in 1836, and asserted that it had "failed in the great end of establishing a uniform and sound currency." This was the beginning of that fierce political

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