to the public creditors, and to settle conflicting questions and interpretations of the laws by virtue of which such obligations have been contracted, it is hereby provided and declared that the faith of the United States is solemnly pledged to the payment in coin or its equivalent of all the obligations of the United States not bearing interest, known as United States notes, and of all the interest-bearing obligations of the United States, except in cases where the law authorizing the issue of any such obligation has expressly provided that the same may be paid in lawful money or other currency than gold and silver. But none of said interest-bearing obligations not already due shall be redeemed or paid before maturity unless at such time United States notes shall be convertible into coin at the option of the holder, or unless at such time bonds of the United States bearing a lower rate of interest than the bonds to be redeemed can be sold at par in coin. And the United States also solemnly pledges its faith to make provision at the earliest practicable period for the redemption of the United States notes in coin.
APPROVED, March 18, 1869.
March 18, 1869
A BILL to give equal political rights, regardless of color, to persons in the District of Columbia, passed the Senate July 17, 1867, and the House July 18, but was not acted on by the President. The same bill again passed the Senate December 5, and the House December 9, and was again left without action. A third bill, in the words of the act following, passed the Senate February 11, 1869, and the House March 2, but failed under a "pocket" veto. The same bill was again introduced in the Senate, March 6, by Sumner, and on the 8th passed by a vote of 31 to 27. The House passed the bill without amendment on the 15th, the vote being 111 to 46, 39 not voting, and on the 18th the act was approved.
REFERENCES. -- Text in U.S. Statutes at Large, XVI, 3. For the proceedings see the House and Senate Journals, 41st Cong., 1st Sess., and the Cong. Globe. The important debates took place on the earlier bills.