1. Resolved, That the Governor be requested to communicate to this House, the reports heretofore made to the Executive by the Board of Public Works.
2. Resolved, That the Auditor of Public Accounts be requested to communicate to this House, the reports heretofore made to him by the Board of Fund Commissioners.
3. Resolved, That the Fund Commissioners be requested to inform this House, whether the three millions of dollars authorised to be borrowed by an act, entitled “An act to increase the Capital Stock of certain State banks, &c., and which is provided in said bill for the purpose of increasing the capital of the State Bank of Illinois, and of the Bank of Illinois, have been borrowed; and if so, whether any premium has been obtained on the sale of the State Bonds for the same: also, what amount of “Certificates of Illinois Internal Improvement Stock,” have been sold by them, in what sums, at what premiums, if any, and whether for cash or any other thing: also, what sums have been drawn for by the Board of Public Works, and by each one of the Commissioners of Public Works; and that they specify, as far as practicable, the amount drawn for each one of the several works of internal improvement: also, what is the amount of compensation received by each one of the Board, for their services since their appointment to office, including all contingent expenses, if any: also, what is the amount of clerks or other persons in the employ of the Board, and the compensation paid them.
4. Resolved, That the Board of Public Works be requested to report to this House, the progress and present condition of the several works of internal improvements committed to their charge, under the provisions of an act, entitled “An act to establish and maintain a general system of Internal Improvement;” what amount of work has been done on said works, specifying the amount as far as practicable done on each, and the amount of money expended on each of said works: also the number of miles let out on each of the railroads mentioned in said bill, and on the great western mail route,2 designating the points of said roads where said contracts have been let out: also, the probable cost of the work let out on each of said works, specifying the probable expense per mile of the railroads, and the great western mail route, so far as contracts have been made on the same: also, what is the ascertained length of each of said railroads, and of the great western mail route, specifying the distance between each of the points named in said bill: also the estimated expense of constructing each of the same, if any estimates have been made by the engineers: also, what amount has been drawn from the Fund Commissioners by each one of the Board,3 and what aggregate amount has been
<Page 2>expended by each one; that they designate for what purpose the money expended by them has been used, specifying the amount expended on each work, and the particular part of said work on which it was expended: also, what amount of railroad iron has been purchased, and its cost; what number of depots, offices, and other public buildings have been erected, or contracted to be built by them, and the cost or probably cost of each of the same, and where the same are situated: also, what number of boats, skiffs or other vessels have been built or purchased for the improvement of the navigation of the rivers named in said bill, and the cost of each of the same: also, what amount has been expended in the improvement of each of said rivers: also, what is the number and salary of the engineers, clerks and agents, now employed by the Board, and each one of the Commissioners, specifying how many are employed in each judicial district:4 also, what number of engineers, agents and clerks, have been employed by the Board, and each one of the Commissioners, since the creation of the system, their salaries and compensation: also, what number of engineering corps have been employed, and where employed: also, what is the amount of compensation received or claimed by each one of the Board for their services since their appointment to office: also, what is the aggregate amount of money paid or due to the commissioners, engineers, agents, and all other persons employed by the Board, and each one of the Commissioners, including the amounts paid for the outfit of the engineering corps, and all other expenses incurred in examining, surveying, and locating the railroads, and the great western mail route; and also the aggregate amount paid or due, as last aforesaid, in each one of the judicial circuits, and specifying the particular items for which the money has been expended:5 also, what is the amount of contingent expenses of the Board, and of each one of the Commissioners; and what items, if any, are embraced under the term of contingent expenses.6
1On December 5, 1838, John J. Hardin introduced the resolution in the House of Representatives. After some debate on December 8, the House amended the resolution by adding text, then adopted the resolution as amended.
Illinois House Journal. 1838. 11th G. A., 1st sess., 20-21, 49- 50.
2Section six of the 1837 internal improvement act appropriated $250,000 for a mail route from Vincennes, Indiana, to St. Louis, Missouri. Pursuant to the provisions of the act, the Board of Commissioners of Public Works commenced surveys on the Great Western Mail Route, which surveyors completed by the fall of 1837. In August 1837, Illinois entered into contracts with private firms to construct portions of the route, and construction commenced. By December 1838, the Board of Commissioners on Public Works had expended $94, 932.07 on the road, and by December 1840, the amount spent had increased to $244,547,43.
John H. Krenkel, Illinois Internal Improvements 1818-1848 (Cedar Rapids, IA: Torch, 1958), 80, 82, 130.
3The Internal Improvement Act provided for the establishment of a seven-member Board of Public Works to oversee the state’s public works projects at the local level as well as for a three-member Fund Commissioners’ Board made up of professional financiers to oversee the finances of the state’s public works projects.
4At this time, Illinois was divided into six judicial circuits.
5On December 8, 1838, the House amended the resolution by adding “Specifying the district in which each item of expense accrued, and in which each engineer, agent, clerk, or hand is employed, giving the comparative costs of the contracts on the different roads; and in answering each of these inquiries, designate districts: and also the amount of damages already recovered from the State for the “right of way” in the different districts’ together with the number of suits now instituted and undetermined against the State for “right of way;” also the number of members of this General Assembly who have been receiving a salary from said Board, designating the employment and the amount of the salary; also the quantity of land purchased for the State by said Board, and the cost of the same, including the depot lands, stating the location of the same, and the probable value at this time.”
6On December 8, 1838, the House amended the resolution by adding “Also what branch railroads have been ordered to be made by the Board, their length, the estimated cost of construction, and estimated cost of depots, cars, and appendages necessary for the same; also what number of acres of land have been entered by the Board for the State, their cost, including expenses of examination and survey; and also the estimated value of the same at this time.”
Printed Transcription, 2 page(s), Journal of the House of Representatives of the Eleventh General Assembly of the State of Illinois at their First Session (Vandalia, IL: William Walters, 1838), 20-21