p.2 The Senate of the United States have refused to entertain a claim of Messrs. William & James Crooks, then of Niagara, U.C., for an illegal seizure of a schooner of theirs in 1812. The following account of the matter is given in a Philadelphia paper:-
This was the case of the vessel called the Lord Nelson, captured by Lieutenant Woolsey, on Lake Ontario, in 1812, for an alleged violation of the embargo laws. The vessel and cargo were sold, and the proceeds paid into Court. The claimants finally obtained a decree in their favour, and received - not their money - but an order on the Clerk of the Southern District from the money arising from the sales of the vessels and cargo. No money was ever paid on the order, and Theron Rudd, the Clerk, with whom the money was deposited, became a bankrupt and a defaulter in a large amount. The Government was applied to through the British Minister, for redress, but nothing was done in relation to it, and the claimants came to Congress, where a Bill for their relief has this day been rejected. The principle assumed is, that the Government is not responsible for its own officers. It is an important decision in reference to cases which are likely to be of frequent occurrence. A draft upon a Sub Treasurer, for instance, may be protested - the Sub may be steaming it across the Atlantic, and the Government declare it is not responsible for the defalcation of its officers.