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Relations with Great Britain.
planatory of the motives which induced the by a hope might be fostered by this Governinent President and Senate to decline ratifying the fifth ibat we should become a party to the present war article. As the affair had become by that cir- on its side. If circumstances permitted, it would cumstance in some degree a delicate one, and as be agreeable to me, as in that case I should preit was in its nature intricate, I thought it im- sume on the approbation of the President, to inproper to let the explanation which I had given timate the willingness of our Government to reresi on the memory of a single individual. By ceive, in the proposed negotiation, the good offices committing it to paper, it might be better under- of friendly Powers. Such intimation would make stood by Lord Harrowby and by the Cabinet, 10 it less likely to view with jealousy the aid we whom he will doubtless submit it. As I send may receive, should that be the case, from France. you a copy of that paper, it is useless to detail in making the suggestion, I should observe, that ihe substance of what passed between us on the I did it from the knowledge I had of the pleasure subject of it. I sent him at the same time an with which the President would avail hiinself of abstract of the impressments, which Mr. Erving opportunities to render good offices to the Powers had furnished me, which had taken place since with whom the United States were in amity. If my communication to Lord Hawkesbury: As our business here is closed satisfactorily, I should Mr. Erving gives you regular and correct infor- think myself at liberty to give such an intimation on that head, I do not annex it to this mation. communication.
" While we were conferring on these subjects Before I left Lord Harrowby I informed him generally, Lord Harrowby noticed the conduct that, independent of the interesting nature of the of Captain Bradley, of the Cambrian, which he subject of our conference, on which I should be said his Government had disapproved and cenhappy to be enabled to communicate something sured by his removal from the command, and orthat would be satisfactory to our Government, i dering him home to account for it. He said that had another motive for wishing an early answer as this step had been taken before any complaint from him respecting it; that I had lately received had been received from our Government, it could instructions from you to repair to Madrid in the not be viewed otherwise than as a strong proof of character of Envoy Extraordinary, to join Mr. the desire of His Majesty to cultivate the friendPinckney in the adjustment of some points which ship of the United Siates; to which I readily asgrew out of the cession of Louisiana by France sented. 10 the United States. He asked me if these did of the prospect of success in the points denot respect our boundaries; to which I replied in pending here, it is impossible for me to give any the affirmative. We had some conversation on satisfactory opinion. The business has, however, that point, in which I communicated a general bow reached a stage to promise an early concluidea of the ground on which our Government sion. Stili it is of too much importance for me had concluded that West Florida was comprised to precipitate it. I shall wait some days longer in the cession. He seemed to have entertained a in patience before I call for au answer, as I deem different one, but to hear with attention and can- it important, be the event what it may, 10 condor the statement which I gave of the question.clude the negotiation so far as respects my deI told him that my absence would be short; that portment, in a manner equally respectful to the I should leave Mr. Purviance, the Secretary of Government as that in which it commenced. the Legation, in the charge of our affairs in my
You will receive within a copy of the project absence, with which he seemed to be well satis- as I presented it to Lord Hawkesbury: You will fied, and assured me that an accommodation find that I have omitted in it the fourth, fifth, with the views of the President in the proposed pinth, tenth, eleventh, and twelfth articles of that mission would be a motive for giving me an early which you seni me. I omitted the fourth because answer to the subjects depending here; by which, it brought into view the question of contraband, however, I understood only that he would en- and exposed us to the revival of the claim of this deavor as much as he could to prevent their Government respecting provisions, which I saw, proving a cause of my detention. I thought it by what had taken place with Sweden, was proper at that time to communicate the fact of likely to be insisted on; the fifth, because the my mission to Spain, and of my desire to set out present practice of the court conforms with it; sooó in discharge of it, that he and his Govern- the ninth, tenth, eleventh, and twelfth because, ment might clearly see that it was a measure or being intended as accommodations to them, it dered by the President, and had relation to the would be in time to introduce them when asked concerns of the United States only. I told him for, when it would be more seasonable to seek that the President had taken this measure from some equivalent in return; though, indeed, it is motives of friendship for Spain, with whom the not likely that they care much about them, espeUnited States were desirous and expected to cially at this moment. I was the more confirmed preserve that relation forever. I made this re- in the idea of omitting the fourth article, from a mark to preclude the possibility of any improper knowledge that the abandonment by treaty of the use being made of what had been said, on the principle that free ships make free goods, would presumption (which might inspire a disposition produce an ill effect with France. I had this into make such use of it) that a disagreement be- formation from authority the most direct, that is, tween the United States and Spain, much less a that she would be likely to consider it, being in rupture, could result from the negotiation, where- / war, an unfriendly act. By presenting it in the
Relations with Great Britain.
form it bears, to which I was prompted by iưffor- of Pittsburg. The adjustment of the boundary mation recently obtained, and which could not of the territory between the two Powers in this have reached you, I hoped to secure the great ob- quarter, was the result of another war, and anojects which you had in view without hazarding ther treaty. any inconvenience whatever. It was also mate- By the fourth article of the Treaty of 1763, rial to know that no case had then occurred (nor France ceded to Great Britain, Canada, Nora indeed has there since) in which the Admiralty Scotia, &c., in the north; and, by the seventh arhave denied the right to our citizens to acquire ticle, the bay and port of Mobile, and all the merchandise, the growth of an enemy's country, territory which she possessed to the left of the and transport it as their own. There was, of Mississippi, except the town and island of New course, no motive for securing it, especially at Orleans. any expense.
By the seventh article it was also stipulated, I am, with great respect and esteeru, your most that a line to be drawn along the middle of the obedient and very humble servant,
Mississippi, from its source to the river Iberville, JAMES MONROE. and thence along the middle of that river, and P. S. I find that there is a case of the kind ad- the Lakes Maurepas and Pontchartrain, to the verted to above now depending before the Admi- sea, should be the boundary between the British ralty. The vessel, the Missouri, touched here on
territory to the eastward, and Louisiana to the its way from Batavia, as is supposed, to Holland. west. At that time it was understood, as it has I think it best to take this up on its own merits, sippi took its source in some mountain at least
been ever since, till very lately, that the Missisthe reasons above mentioned, which I trust will as high north as the forty-ninth degree of north
latitude. be approved by the President.
By the Treaty of 1783, between the United
States and Great Britain, ihe boundary between Paper respecting the boundary of the United fixed by a line which is to run along the St.
these States, and Nova Scotia and Canada, is States, delivered to Lord Harrowby, September Croix and highlands, bounding the southern wa5, 1804.
ters of the Si. Lawrence, the forty-fifth degree of By the tenth article of the Treaty of Utrecht, latitude to the water communication between the it is agreed "that France shall restore to Great Lakes, and along that communication to the Lake Britain the Bay and Straits of Hudson, together of the Woods, and through that Lake to the with all lands, seas, seacoasts, rivers, and places. northwestern point thereof; thence, a due west situate in the said bay and straits which belong course, to the Mississippi. The line follows afterthereunto,” &c.
ward the course of the Mississippi to the thirtyIt is also agreed, "that Commissaries shall be first degree of north latitude. forth with appointed by each Power to determine, By Mitchell's map, by which the Treaty of within a year, the limits between the said Bay of 1783 was formed, it was evident that the northHudson and the places appertaining to the western point of the Lake of the Woods was at French; and also to describe and settle, in like least as high north as the latitude of 49 deg. By manner, the boundaries between the other British the observations of Mr. Thompson, astronomer to and French 'colonies in those parts.”
the Northwestern Company, it appears to be in Commissaries were accordingly appointed by latitude 49 deg. 37 min. By joining, then, the each Power, who executed the stipulations of the western boundary of Canada to its northern in treaty in establishing the boundaries proposed by the Lake of the Woods, and closing both there, it it. They fixed the northern boundary of Canada follows that it was the obvious intention of the and Louisiana by a line beginning on the Atlan- Ministers who negotiated the treaty, and of their tic, at a cape or promontory in 58 deg. 30 min. respective Governments, that the United States north latitude; thence, south westwardly, to the should possess all the territory lying between the Lake Mistasin; thence, further southwest, to the Lakes and the Mississippi, south of the parallel of latitude 49 deg. north from the Equator, and along the forty.ninth degree of north latitude. This is that line indefinitely.
confirmed by the courses which are afterward At the time this treaty was formed France pos- pursued by the treaty, since they are precisely sessed Canada and Louisiana, which she connect- ihose which had been established between Great ed by a chain of forts extended from the mouth Britain and France in former treaties. By runof the Mississippi, on all its' waters, and on the ning due west from the northern point of the Lakes along the St. Lawrence to Montreal. Her Lake of the Woods to the Mississippi, it must encroachments eastward on the territory of the have been intended, according to the lights before present United States, then British provioces, them, to take the parallel of the forty-ninth deextended to the foot of the Alleghany mountain. gree of latitude as established under the Treaty It is well known that, on the Ohio, at a point of Utrecht; and by pursuing thence the course formed by the confluence of the Alleghany and of the Mississippi to the thirty-first degree of latiMonopgahela branches, below which
the stream tude, the whole extent of the western boundary takes the name of Ohio, that the French had of the United States, the boundary which had built a fort which was called Duquesne; a fort been established by the Treaty of 1763 was actuwhich has been better known since by the name l ally adopted. This conclusion is further sup
Relations with Great Britain.
ported by the liberal spirit which terminated the na, as she had received it of Spain. This treaty war of our Revolution; it having been manifest- took place on the 30th of April, 1803, twelve days ly the intention of the parties to heal, as far as only before the convention between Great Britain could be done, the wounds which it had inflicted. and the United States was signed, and some days Nor is it essentially weakened by the circum- before the adoption of such a treaty was known stance, that the Mississippi is called for by the to the Plenipotentiaries who negotiated and sigawestern course from the Lake of the Woods, 'ored the convention. that its navigation is stipulated in favor of both Under such circumstances, it is impossible that Powers. Westward of the Mississippi, to the apy right which the United States derived under south of the forty-Dinth degree of north latitude, that treaty could be conveyed by this convention Great Britain held then no territory ; that river to Great Britain, or that the Ministers who formwas her western boundary. In running west, and ed the convention could have contemplated such ceding the territory to the river, it was impossible an effect by it. Thus the stipulation which is not to call for it; and, on the supposition that it contained in the fifth article of the convention has took its source within the limits of the Hudson become, by the cession made by the treaty, perBay Company, it was natural that it should stip- fectly nugatory; for, as Great Britain holds do ulate the free navigation of the river; but, in so territory southward of the forty-ninth degree of doing, it is presumed that her government re- north latitude, and the United States the whole spected more a delicate sense of what it might be of it, the line proposed by that article would run supposed to owe to the interest of that company, through a country which now belongs exclusivethan any strong motive of policy, founded on the ly to the latter. interests of Canada or its other possessions in that quarter. As Great Britain ceded at the
No. 30. same time the Floridas to Spain, the navigation
Mr. Monroe to Mr. Madison. of the Mississippi by her subjects, if it took place, being under a foreign jurisdiction, could not fail
LONDON, October 3, 1804.. to draw from her own territories the resources Sir: Some days after Lord Harrowby return. which properly belonged to them. and therefore ed from Weymouth, I received from him a note could not be viewed in the light of a national ad- of the 26th, expressing his regret that he had been vantage. After the Treaty of 1783, and at the so engaged since his return, that he had not been time ihe convention in contemplation was enter- able to see me, and that he could not even fix a ed into, the state of things was as is above stated. time for the purpose. This note concluded with The territory which Great Britain held westward an invitation to dinner on the 29th at his house of the Lake of the Woods, was bounded south by in the country. On an attentive consideration of the forty-ninth degree of north latitude; that the note, and all preceding circumstances, I was which lay between the Lake of the Woods and of opinion that his object by it was either to give the Mississippi, southward of that parallel, be- me to understand, in a conciliating manner, that langed to the United States; and that which lay he could not conclude with me at present the buto the west of the Mississippi, to Spain. It being, siness in which we were engaged, and wished it however, understood, by more recent observations, postponed, or that he sought an opportunity of that the source of the Mississippi did not extend conferring with me in retirement more freely on so high north as had been supposed, and Great the subject of it than he could do at his office. In Britain having shown a desire to have the bound- either view, I thought it incumbent on me to acary of the United States modified in such manner cept the invitation. I had, however, some doubt as to strike that river, an article to that effect was as to the mode; I hesitaied at first whether I inserted in the late convention; but, in so doing, ought not to meet him in an expression of regret it was not the intention of the American Minister, at the delay to which I was subjected, but I could or of the British Minister, to do more than simply not well connect such a sentiment with an acto define the American boundary. It was not ceptance of the invitation; and there was the less contemplated by either of them, that America reason so to do, as that was to take effect so soon ; should convey to Great Britain any right to the I therefore thought it best to let his measure have territory lying westward of that line, since not a its course, to see the result of it, and then adopt foot of it belonged to her; it was intended to such a one as might appear most advisable at the leave it to Great Britain to settle the point as to time. With this view, I confined my reply altosuch territory, or such portion of it as she might gether to the invitation, which I accepted. The want, with Spain, or rather with France, to whom dinner party was small, yet so composed as evi. it then belonged. At this period, however, cer- dently to preclude the idea of an interesting potain measures respecting the Mississippi, and litical conversation with me having been intended movements in that quarter, took place, which by it. Not a word was said on the subject; so seemed to menace the great interests of America that I returned with that material fact only added that were dependent on that river. These excited to the data on which I had to deliberate. 'In dea sensibility, acute and universal, of which, in ciding the part it now became me to take, I saw equal degree, her history furnishes but few exam-distinctly that the motive first above mentioned ples. They led to a discussion which terminated had dictated the note to me of the 26th ; that in a treaty with France, by which that Power Lord. Harrowby actually wished me to infer from ceded to the United States the whole of Louisia-Iit
, that he could not now proceed in the business
Relations with Great Britain.
in which we were engaged, with the hope of an afterward, on a view of all circumstances, as it early conclusion of it, and was also desirous that might deem most advisable, unfeltered by any the intimation should not affect the friendly rela- compromitment of mine. 6th. By keeping the tions subsisting between the two Powers. I re- negotiation open, it was in our power to renew it solved at once not to press the affair further at at pleasure ; and it was probable, by preserving this time, from a belief that such pressure, instead our neutrality, and profiting of the credit attached of promoting the object desired, was more likely to it, that our attitude in it would every day beto increase the indisposition of this Government come more imposing. Under these considerations, to any arrangement by treaty, as it seemed to lead I resolved to pursue the latter course; to meet the direcily from the safe ground on which I stood, friendly sentiments expressed in Lord Harrowby's to a vexatious and irritating controversy. I re- letter of the 26th, with a like one on our part; to solved also to hasten my departure for Spain, with regret the delay, but to admit that the state of as much despatch as the explanations incident to things might impose it on him; to state the nesuch a measure, under existing circumstances, cessity of my departure for Spain, but declare the would permit. There seemed, however, to be pleasure with which I should return to resume the some considerable degree of delicacy and import- negotiation. His Lordship's reply, which is also ance attached to the manner in which this decis enclosed, breathed the same sentiments ; so that ion should be communicated to his Lordship. the affair rests precisely on that ground. The Two modes occurred, essentially different in char- negotiation is suspended by mutual consent to be acter. The first supposed the negotiation at an revived on my return from Spain, or whenever end; the second as suspended only. To the first the President shall otherwise provide for the were opposed several strong objections, which same. were counterbalanced by no single advantage that I took occasion, in my letter to Lord Harrowcould reasonably be hoped from it. 1st. A de- by, to state the route I should pursue to Madrid, claration by me to Lord Harrowby, that I consid- through Holland and France, to scout the degraered the negotiation at an end, thereby implying ding suspicions which too often attach to such that it had failed in its ohject, might appear to movements in such times-suspicions which are form a species of rupture between the two coun- generally created by the artifices which are used tries, especially when taken in connexion with my to hide the movements, since they are considered, immediate departure from this, with intention to and perhaps properly, as proofs of guilt. pass through France. 20. A measure of such tone I thought proper to notify to Lord Harrow by, was not invited by, nor did it necessarily result at the same time, that Mr. Purviance would be from, his Lordship's note of the 26th, which left in charge of our affairs here, and that I should sought only delay, and in a conciliating manner. be happy in having an opportunity to present him The circumstances of the country might induce to his lordship in that character; which was arhim to expect an accommodation in that respect ranged on the following day. I have committed from a friendly Power; and to fail in giving it, this trust to Mr. Purviance, in full confidence that create a deep impression of resentment in the he will discharge it with perfect integrity, and a mind of the Ministry, and perhaps of the nation, diligence and capacity to merit the approbation of against our Government and country. 3d. Such the President. His compensation, which has a measure, with the implication incident to it, proved totally inadequate to his station as secrewas not justified by fact, or the true interest of iary, becomes, of course, much more so to his the United States. The negotiation had not fail- present one, which will unavoidably expose him ed in its great objects, our commerce was never to many heavy additional expenses.' I have taken so much favored in time of war, nor was there ever the liberty to instruct our bankers to advance him less cause of complaint furnished by impressment. the sum of one thousand dollars, which is necesThe state of Europe is upsettled; the events of say for his immediate accommodation, and trust war are uncertain; the United States are pros- that the President will make him such an allowperous beyond the example of any other nation, ance as may be suitable to his situation. and more might be lost at home and abroad by an In the interview which I had with Lord Harappearance of hostility with any Power than rowby, we had much general conversation on the could be expected from a formal concession of topics depending between us, which, as it corthe points contended for. 4th. Such a declaration responded with what has passed before, and comwould also be contrary to the spirit in which the municated to you, it is unnecessary to repeat. He negotiation had been commenced, and carried to appeared to agree with me, with great sincerity, the present stage. It would lose the credit which in the advantage to be derived to both countries our moderation had merited; expose to hazard from the preservation of their present amicable fortunes that were secure; and even with less relations, and to be quite satisfied with the state hope of advantage, in any view, than might be in which the negotiation was left, assuring me entertained from a continuance of the same sys- that he would not fail to take it up on my return, tem of moderation. 5th. My instructions did not with an earnest desire to conclude it to the satisauthorize a measure so hazardous; they seemed faction of both parties, though he intimated that to require only that I should make a fair experi- there was great difficulty attending certain branchment of the disposition of this Government, 10 es of it. He suggested that, as I was forced to go arrange these points amicably, and submit the to Spain, he hoped that the suspension would result to the wisdom of our Government, to act. prove equally convenient to us boib; to which I
Relations with Great Britain.
assented. He thought it unnecessary for me to expedient, in pursuing our just rights, to profit of go to Weymouth to take leave of the King, as he time and circumstances, and, in the interim, unkept no regular Court there, and my absence would less they be secured by a fair and equal treaty, to be short. He promised, however, to communi- act with moderation till the occasion invites to a cate to His Majesty my request to be presented to more decisive and hazardous policy, the state of him there, as of his undertaking to prevent it; things permits it; or, if it should be deemed more with which view, he desired to address him a spe- advisable to adopt the latter course at present, the cial note to that effect, to be submitted to the opportunity is fair for such a measure. The situKing; a copy of which is enclosed.
ation in which our Government will find itself In the course of this conversation, Lord Har- on receiving this communication is a very differrow by expressed concern to find the United States ent one from that in which I have stood throughopposed to Great Britain on certain great neutral out. If the latter course is preferred, it cannot be questions in favor of the doctrines of the modern doubted that the moderation which' has been so law, which he termed novelties. I replied that, far observed, will strengthen the Government in in adhering to our principles, the President had any the most vigorous measures which may be endeavored to arrange thein in a friendly manner thought necessary. A virtuous and free people with his Government; that he had takén no step will be more united in support of such measures, of an opposite character; that he had sought however strong they may be, when they see, by no concert with the neutral Powers in support of the clearest evidence, that the cause is not only them, as he had supposed that a satisfactory ar- just, but that their Government has done every; rangement to both Governments might be made thing in its power which the national honor and by direct communication between them, which he interest would permit, to avoid such an extremity. preferred. He observed that, although while the I shall apprize our Consuls that Mr. Purviance
negotiation was suspended, his Government would is left in charge of our affairs during my absence; bi
adhere to its principles, yet that it would act in and have only to add, that I expect to sail to-mor
what concerned us with moderation in the prac- row or next day, in a vessel bound to Rotterdam, Ptice of them.
(my baggage being already on board,) on my way I informed you, in my letter of the 8th of Sep-io Madrid, whither I shall proceed with all the lember, that a case had occurred of an American despatch that may be practicable. vessel, engaged in commerce between Batavia I am, sir, with greai respect and esteem, your and Holland, as was inferred by her having a Eu- very obedient servant, ropean destination, being brought into port and
JAMES MONROE. subjected to trial. The case is not yet decided, though, in his remarks while the cause was in
Extract.—Mr. Madison to Mr. Monroe. hearing before the court, the judge maintained the British doctrine; it was postponed to give
DEPARTMENT OF STATE, I time to ascertain what the regulations of the Gov
March 6, 1805. ernment of Holland were, in peace, respecting our Sır: The experience of every day shows more commerce with that colony. He did not say, if and more the obligation on both sides to enter sethey prohibited the trade, that he would condemn riously on the means of guarding the harmony the vessel. It is probable she may be acquitted of the two countries against the dangers with on some other point in the cause, without impugn- which it is threatened, by a perseverance of Great ing that principle. It is understood that several Britain in her irregularities on the high seas, and other vessels engaged in the same trade, which particularly in the impressments from American
were stopped and examined at the Texel by the vessels. The extent in which these have taken | British cruisers, were permitted to prosecute their place since the commencement of the war will be
voyage; hence, it is presumable that orders were seen by the enclosed report, required from this
given to that effect by the Government. It is Department by a vote of the House of RepresentI certain that, on no principle or pretext whatever, atives; and the call for it, whilst negotiations on
has more than one of our vessels been condemned, the subject were understood to be in train, is itself on which judgment there is an appeal.
a proof of the public sensibility to those aggresThe whole subject is now before the President; sions on the security of our citizens and the rights on which I have to remark that, in discharging of our flag. A further proof will be seen in the this trust, I have endeavored, in every stage, to motion, also enclosed, which was made by Mr. give full effect to the feelings and sentiments of Crowninshield, and which will probably be revimy country in respect to the objects in question, ved at the next session. This motion, with his especially the
unwarrantable practice of impress remarks upon it, appear very generally in the ment, without taking any step which should com- newspapers, with comments proceeding from a promit our Government in the part it should take coincidence of the sensibility out of doors with when the result was submitted to it. In that state that within. A still stronger proof of impatience the affair now is; for, after the expiration of a under this evil will be found in the proceedings few months, it is perfectly consistent with it to authorized by an act of Congress just passed, and
revive the negotiation in such form as the Presi- which is likewise enclosed, againsi British officers Ideat may deem advisable. The proceeding here committing on the high seas trespasses or torts
lays a foundation for any course which the public on board American vessels, offences manifestly bónor and interest may dictate. If it is deemed including cases of impressment.
10th Con. Ist Sess.-76