who may be dying for the want of space to live in.7 When Spain claimed title and possession to this vast tract of country under this doctrine, that the aborigines had no title in the soil, but only a temporary right to the use and occupancy thereof, such only as the buffalo enjoys, she was justified in such possession only by applying it to a better use. Three hundred years have passed, and neither herself nor those claiming under her have applied it to that better use, and she holds it without such ability so to apply it, to the exclusion of others who have, and whose necessities require it. England, France, or any other nation, whose population is greater than her means of subsistence, has a right, derived directly from the Maker of the earth, to occupy it with her redundant people; and it alone is a question of policy or power whether its present claimants or nearest neighbour will permit it. This era, so marked in the improvements of agriculture, machinery, and navigation - in the knowledge of geography, and the increased necessity of the case, will not allow a perversion of the use of this country. For many wise reasons, the United States should extend her settlements  over it; but should she, by a different policy, fail to do so, the all-seeing eye of Great Britain will not let slip such a golden opportunity in possessing herself of this desirable middle ground between home and her vast Eastern possessions. Besides, if the Oregon settlement is important to the United States, without a harbour sufficient for the entrance of her smallest vessels of war, the port of San Francisco, or some other port in the south, is absolutely necessary for her.
It may, however, well be questioned whether either Spain or the present government of Mexico has ever had any other than a nominal possession of this vast region; for only here and there, in a very few isolated spots, has she had a few people in real possession, and those few shut in by fortifications as protection against the aboriginal occupants. If, therefore, she has no power of absolutely possessing herself of this country, her declaration of ownership to it was arbitrary, and the act not justified by her means; and with the same propriety she might have claimed, to illimitable extent, that which she neither had the use of nor power of using, depriving millions of the earth's population of support and the proper uses thereof.
While I hold that it is both just and proper that any nation with an overgrown population may settle these vast wastes with her redundant people, I repeat again that it would be short-sighted policy in the United States to permit it. That nation, with  her twenty millions of people, in the ordinary course of events, in fifty years, will have eighty to provide for, and a large country will be necessary for so many within the lifetime of numbers now busy in the politics of that country. With such an acquisition, the United States would not be larger than Brazil with her six millions of people, and about one third of the size of the present British dominions. With such an acquisition, the United