Report of the Committee

"Report of the Committee appointed to inquire into the expediency of removing the Seat of Government," October 3, 1814

National Archives and Records Administration, Records of the U.S. House of Representatives

After the burning of Washington, Congress met in Blodget’s Hotel, which had escaped destruction. Soon after convening, northern congressmen proposed that the government move, at least temporarily, to Philadelphia, a more defensible location. A House committee took up the matter and wrote this resolution describing the idea as "inexpedient," but in the whole House, an amendment changing "inexpedient" to "expedient" passed 72 to 71. The bill was then defeated 83 to 74 and Washington, DC, remained the nation’s capital.