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of the efforts of the Commissioners of the so-called “ Confederate States” to obtain recognition of the European Powers.

He informed me that no application had been made to him in this view, nor would it now be entertained if made. The revolution would receive no sanction by any act of Belgium. A small State, he continued, whose property depended on the full exercise of the industrial pursuits of its people, they did not mingle in foreign politics, their policy being not to imperil their interests by stepping beyond the limits of strict neutrality in their intercourse with other States. They should, therefore, remain “neutral," as he expressed it, in respect to this question. They had not even yet recognized the Italian Government, he added. We desired, I told him, not to be subjected to any interference in the settlement of our domestic affairs, whether in the form of recognition of political existence or of belligerent rights of those who were in open rebellion to the Government and laws of The United States. It was an issue between order and anarchy which we were fully able to cope with, and all Europe was interested that its settlement be in the most prompt and effective manner, as least liable to cause permanent derangement to commerce.

In reply to my inquiry, he said he had received no official information of the blockade of our southern ports, proclaimed by the President, although he had late advices from the Belgian Minister at Washington. He had only knowledge of it, he said, as printed in the papers. In answer to his inquiry, I said I thought it would not injuriousiy affect the supply of cotton, as the crop of the past year had mostly gone forward; and, moreover, that while the blockade would be rigorously enforced with regard to supplies, or vessels bearing the “ Confederate” flag, I presumed, although I had no instructions on the subject, that the vessels now loading, or under engagements to load in those ports, would be allowed reasonable time to leave; that there was every desire to make this condition of things, which was but temporary, as little embarrassing as possible to foreign commerce. The Minister expressed great satisfaction at this, and said, that the possibility of failure of the cotton supply, growing out of these troubles in our Southern States, was causing great anxiety.

M. de Vrière then spoke of the new tariff with a great deal of feeling ; said that it was highly prejudicial to their interests, instancing in point, that 40 furnaces for the manufacture of window glass bad been stopped in consequence, and expressed his surprise that, in this age of progress, when Europe was abandoning the exploded system, as he expressed himself, of differential duties, The United States should

Their own expe. rience as a manufacturing people had convinced them of the bad policy of such a system for the interests of the manufacturers themselves. I replied, that I presumed the general interruptions of trade consequent upon apprehended war in The United States was, quite as much as the new tariff, a cause for suspension of the traffic he referred to. The tariff had been augmented by the last Congress to produce more revenue; if it failed to produce such result, it would probably be changed. It was a matter dependent on the will of Congress, and he was aware we had had several changes in the past few years, none of which had apparently given satisfaction to the manufacturing States of Europe which desired to supply our markets; still, it was our main source of revenue, and the system of raising means for the expenses of the Government by a duty on importations would probably long continue.

pursue such

a course.

I took my leave of M. de Vrière with the repeated assurance that no countenance would be given, in any form, to the rebellion in our southern States.


Mr. Sanford to Mr. Seward. (Extract.)

Brussels, June 22, 1861. As M. de Vrière is out of town, I directed the attention of M. Saluremont, the Secretary-General, who is charged with the affairs of the department in the absence of the Minister, in an interview with him to-day, as to the propriety of a proclamation warning Belgians from taking service under those in rebellion to the Federal Government, furnishing them “aid and comfort,” and especially closing the ports of Belgium to their “privateers”-declared by the President to be pirates—or permitting them to be fitted out in her ports. I said that while the assurances I had received from M. de Vrière, soon after my arrival, of the attitude of his Government had been satisfactory, I hoped it would now give public expression to them, both as due to a friendly Power, and as a warning to their own citizens of the perils of such enterprises.

M. Saluremont replied that the matter had been under consideration; that the position which England and France had taken had not seemed to be satisfactory to the Government of The United States, and they had delayed, in consequence, taking any formal steps; but not, he begged me to be assured, from any want of friendly spirit or desire to do all the occasion called for at their hands.

I replied that he was correct in his views of our sentiments as to the course which England and France had seen fit to pursue. We could not look upon the recognition of belligerent rights to those who, under our law's, were rebels, and before we had attempted to employ forcible means of coercion, as evincing the friendly spirit we had a right to expect ; that these people would be treated none the less as rebels on the land, as pirates on the seas—they or those of whatever nationality who joined them; and we counted, on the part of Belgium, upon no such qualification of our citizens in rebellion, whom we were engaged in submitting to the action of our laws.

He said their legislation provided generally for the cases I had instanced, but that attention would be immediately given to the subject, and he thought we need not have any reason to be dissatisfied with the action they would take in the premises.

He then told me that our new tariff law was a subject of great complaint in Belgium, and great distress in some branches of industry which it had destroyed, referring specially to glass and some kinds of woollen goods.

I again explained our system of revenue, which all manufacturing States this side the Atlantic insist upon believing to be disadvantageous to their interests.



Mr. Sanford to Mr. Seward. (Extract.)


, July 2, 1861. REFERRING to a conversation detailed in my despatch I have the honour to inclose a notice published in the official journal (the " Moniteur”) of the 25th ultimo, in which, basing its action upon the stipulations of the declaration of the Congress of Paris of April 16, 1856, it is announced that instructions have been addressed to the judicial, maritime, and military authorities to inform them that privateers of no nation or flag, alone or with their prizes, will be permitted, save in cases of extreme danger by stress of weather, to enter the ports of Belgium ; enjoining upon them to recognize no commission or letter of marque as having validity; and warning all subject to the Belgian laws, that in taking part or service in any privateers they incur the risk of being treated as pirates abroad, and of being prosecuted with the utmost rigour of the laws at home. In thanking the acting Minister for this prompt response to my request, I observed that, while this was sufficient, in so far as it went, for the occasion that called it forth—as we had, and expected to have, no privateers upon the sea at this time-still, so long as we were not a party to the declaration of Paris, the employment of privateers by The United States was undoubtedly as much a belligerent right as the employment of militia on land; and, in the event of a foreign war, we should expect, on the part of friendly Powers, no such impediment to its exercise by any injurious distinction between it and the other arms of the public service.


(Translation.) Belgium has given its adhesion to the principles laid down in the declaration of the Congress of Paris of April 16, 1856.* This adhesion was published, together with the said Declaration [6 June, 18567]. in the Belgian “ Moniteur" of June 8, 1856.

The commercial public is notified that instructions on this subject have been given to the judicial, maritime, and military authorities, warning them that privateers, under whatever flag or commission, or letters of marque, are not to be allowed to enter our ports except in case of imminent perils of the sea. The aforesaid authorities are charged, consequently, to keep a strict watch upon all such privateers and their prizes, and to compel them to put to sea again as soon as practicable.

The same authorities have been charged not to recognize the validity of any commission or letter of marque whatsoever.

All persons subject to the laws of Belgium, who shall fit ont or take any part in any privateering expedition, will therefore expose themselves to the danger, on the one hand, of being treated as pirates abroad, and, on the other, to prosecution before Belgian tribunals with all the rigour of the laws.


Mr. Jones to Mr. Seward. (Extract.)

Vienna, April 15, 1861. I have the honour to acknowledge the receipt of your circular, dated the 9th of March, 1861.

I presented the copy of the inaugural address of the President to Count Rechberg, on the 8th of April, and at the same time verbally communicated, in accordance with the instructions contained in said despatch, the views and opinions of my Government on the present disturbed condition of its domestic atfairs, and the aspect in which it wished them to be regarded by the Government of Austria.

He replied that Austria hoped to see us re-united. That she was not inclined to recognize de facto Governments anywhere; her opinions had been made, however, and her Minister and Consuls in America instructed fully on the subject; that no application bad yet been made to Austria for recognition as an independent sovereignty, by any portion of the Confederacy of the United States, and he was of opinion that, as the views of Austria would soon be known on the subject, no such application would be made. Should it be otherwise, however, he would notify this legation, and the subject could be resumed.


• Vol. XLVI. Page 26.

+ Vol. XLVIII. Page 136.

Mr. Jones to Mr. Seward. SIR,

Vienna, July 20, 1861. A Few days since Count Rechberg, the Imperial Royal Minister of Foreign Affairs, was interrogated in the House of Deputies of the Austrian Empire on the subject of the course pursued, or about to be persued, by the Imperial Royal Government in relation to American affairs in the present complication. The report of his remarks is as follows:

Count Rechberg rose to answer the question, “What measures has the Government taken to protect its commercial relations with The United States of North America, under the warlike condition of things now existing there,” put by Mr. Putzer and his associates. He said: “The Minister of Foreign Affairs has, in connexion with the Ministers of Trade and the Navy, caused information to be obtained through the Imperial Minister resident at Washington as to the measures which other Governments have taken for the same reason. The answer received was, that England and France, as well as Holland, had strengthened their squadrons in the American waters, and had endeavoured to bring the belligerent powers to the recognition of those principles, especially relating to the protection of private property, which were agreed upon at the Congress of Paris in 1856. The Imperial Government has, for the present, abstained from sending ships-of-war, and has directed the Minister resident to obtain from the belligerent powers the recognition of the following points established by the said Congress :

"1. The neutral flag covers enemy's goods, with the exception of contraband of war.

“2. Neutral goods, with the exception of contraband of war, are not liable to capture under enemy's flag.

“3. Blockades, in order to be binding, must be effective ; that is to say, maintained by a force sufficient really to prevent access to the coast of the enemy.

The Government hopes, on account of the friendly relations which bave existed between it and the American States for years, to obtain the recognition of these three points on the part of the belligerents."

In an interview with Count Rechberg a day or two ago, he expressed to me a hope that the answer might be deemed satisfactory to my Government, as it was his wish to make it so. I replied that, so far as I was advised, no exception could be taken to his language, but that I should transmit to my Government both the question and answer, and if they had anything to say they would make it known to him through their Minister here. He repeated his strong desire to see the integrity of the Union preserved in America, and said Austria was anxious to cultivate the most friendly relations

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