The Presidential Inaugural Address of Woodrow Wilson [March 4, 1913]
Jackson's Second Message-
Dec 7, 1830
The importance of the principles involved in the inquiry, whether it will be proper to re charter the Bank of the United States, requires that I should again call the attention of Congress to the subject. Nothing has occurred to lessen, in any degree, the dangers which many of our citizens apprehend from that institution, as at present organized. In the spirit of improvement and compromise which distinguishes our country and its institutions, it becomes us to inquire, whether it be not possible to secure the advantages afforded by the present bank, through the agency of a Bank of the United States, so modified in its principles and structure as to obviate constitutional and other objections.
It is thought practicable to organize such a bank, with the necessary officers, as a branch of the Treasury Department, based on the public and individual deposited without power to make loans or purchase property, which shall remit the funds of the Government, and the expense of which may be paid, if thought advisable, by allowing its officers to sell bills of exchange to private individuals at a moderate premium. Not being a corporate body, having no stockholders, debtors, or property, and but few officers. it would not be obnoxious to the constitutional objections which are urged against the present bank; and having no means to operate on the hopes, fears, or interests, of large masses of the community, it would be shorn of the influence which makes that bank formidable. The States would be strengthened by having in their hands the means of furnishing the local paper currency through their own banks; while the Bank of the United States, though issuing no paper, would check the issues of the State banks by taking their notes in deposit, and for exchange, only so long as they continue to be redeemed with specie. In times of public emergency, the capacities of such an institution might be enlarged by legislative provisions.
These suggestions are made, not so much as a recommendation, as with a view of calling the attention of Congress to the possible modifications of a system which can not continue to exist in its present form without occasional collisions with the local authorities, and perpetual apprehensions and discontent on the part of the States and the people.