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[Translation.]
LEGATION OF The NetherLANDS,

Washington, June 6, 1862. Sir : I have had the honor to receive your note dated yesterday, through which you have been pleased to inform me that the President deeply regiets the conflict which has occurred at New Orleans between the military authorities and the consul of the Netherlands. It is with a real satisfaction which accords fully with what I was to expect from the high sense of justice of the President and of the government of the United States—that I have seen, in the course of the note, that they view the conduct of the aforesaid authorities as a violation of the law of nations; that they disapprove of it; that they disapprove of the sanction which was given to it by Major General Butler.

After having thanked the President and the government of the United States therefor, I must permit myself to remark, Mr. Secretary of State, that a circumstance which, from the inception, the consul of the Netherlands is reproached with, must evidently be attributed to a want of clearness in the statement made by Major General Butler.

According to your note he says " that he had been informed that a very considerable sum belonging to insurgent enemies was secreted in a certain liquor store of the city ;" whereupon you observe “that he sent, very properly, a military guard to make searches at the place indicated.” But it appears to be proven that the money and articles in question were not by any means in this liquor store, but in a very different place in the city. If, therefore, Mr. Conturié was accosted in the aforesaid liquor store, his commercial establishment, ho might have said, with truth, that all that was in that store was his personal property. There would, therefore, be want of clearness on the part of Major General Butler in making the declaration of Mr. Conturié bear upon the kegs, &c. Upon other allegations of Major General Butler, differing (contrary to) from the allegations of the consul, I would not desire more than yourself, Mr. Secretary of State, to express an opinion. Major General Butler makes a very serious charge against the consul, which involves a proceeding deserving of removal from office of the one or the other—that of the consul, if he has in re

received “ with connivance," as Major General Butler pretends, (alleges,) a " fraudulent” deposit; that of Major General Butler, if he fail to prove that charge-for to take from one his honor is' no less culpable than to take from him his property, his life. Let the government of the United States, Mr. Secretary of State, in order to throw light upon its knowledge, or (information) have the affair examined and investigated, " investigate the transaction which has been detailed,”) before it pronounces between the accuser and the accused. This could not be impugned by me; but that I appoint some one to take partto assist–in this species of inquest, which by the proceedings themselves of the military authorities can no longer take place upon a state of things untouched, the kegs and the boxes having been carried off without any seals, having been, as it appears, opened by Major General Butler-his I could not do without granting in some measure a bill of indemnity to that which has occurred. It is what I could not take upon myself without receiving upon that point the instructions of the government of the King. There are, besides, in this affair circumstances which strike me. It seems to me that when the question relates to “ fraudulent deposit,” to “connivanco” in acts of high treason, one should not impute, as Major General Butler does ; one should rather accuse; one should not limit himself to seize upon the proofs. It would also be natural to make sure of the accused persons. And notwithstanding the consul to whom they impute so serious an act was under arrest but during a few hours-during the searches made in his vault—whilst the agent of the house of Hope & Co., who, if the consul be guilty, must be so, at least as much as he, has not been, to my knowledge, arrested. These are circumstances, Mr. Secretary of State, which seem to me of a nature to cause one to rather presume the innocence of the agent of the house of Hope & Co., and of the consul of the Netherlands, than to indicate that they are believed really guilty. You should not therefore be surprised that I recoil from the supposition of culpability, and that, as for myself, I could not consider the deposit otherwise than as legitimate until the contrary be proved. It is for Major General Butler to prove what he alleges. Ei incumbit probatio qui dicit, non qui negat, (the burden of the proof lies upon him who asserts, not upon him who denies,) say the Pandects. It is not for me, it is not for our consul, to prove that he is innocent. Prima facie the money delivered by the “ Citizens' Bank” to the agent of the house of Hope & Co., to be transmitted to that house, or to be deposited with the consul of the Netherlands, is a legitimate money legitimately transferred. I could not, without having received (obtained) the orders of the government of the King, participate in any manner in an investigation which would tend to inrestigate that which I could not put in doubt-the good faith of the agent of the house of Hope & Co., the moral impossibility that that honorable house should lend itself to any culpable underplot, the good faith of the consul of the Netherlands. Quilibet præsumiter justus, donec probitur contrarium, (every one is to be presumed honest until the contrary is proven,) saith the ancient universal rule of justice; and this rule is true, especially where it applies to persons such as those as are in question here.

Consequently, while awaiting the orders of the government of the King, I reserve all the rights and all the demands (claims) which may be based, either by the royal government or by the Netherlands consul, or by individuals, upon the seizure of values, titles, or papers deposited at the consulate of the Netherlands at New Orleans, and more especially upon the reprehensible censured manner in which this seizure has been made. But if, on the other hand, Mr. Secretary of State, I must reserve in their entireness all the demands which the government of the King, the consul of the Netherlands, and the persons interested might hereafter have to sustain, I am happy to give you the assurance that the government of the King, upon an eventual representation on your part against the conduct of the consul at New Orleans, will receive it with all the consideration, and will right it with all the promptness, which the excellent relations which for so many years exist between the two countries may lead to expect from the government of the august sovereign who maintains, and will ever maintain, the motto, Justicia regnorum fundamentum.” (Justice is the foundation of kingdoms.)

I have the honor, Mr. Secretary of State, to request you to be pleased, at an early day, to acknowledge the receipt of this note from me, and I avail myself of this new opportunity to reiterate to you the assurances of my high consideration.

ROEST VAN LIMBURG. Hon. Mr. SEWARD,

Secretary of State of the United States of America.

Mr. Van Limburg to Mr. Seward.

[Translation.]
LEGATION OF THE NETHERLANDS,

Washington, June 7, 1862. SIR: In my note of yesterday, of the 6th of this month, I have had the honor to offer you my thanks for the ample and decided manner in which the President and the government of the United States have censured the proceedings of Major General Butler towards our consul at New Orleans at the time of the scizure of the values and papers deposited at the consulate of the Netherlands. I afterwards corrected a want of clearness made by Major General Butler, upon which you based a reproach to the consul.

In reference to the decision of the government of the United States to throw light upon its information as to what has occurred at the consulate, and upon the allegations of Major General Butler respecting the nature of the deposit, I have stated the motives which prevent me from participating in the species of inquiry which the government of the United States is immediately to cause to be instituted at New Orleans, in order to be enabled afterwards, without delay, to return the values to the consul, or to the house of Hope & Co., should it appear that they belong to that house; or, in other words, to dispose of them according to the law of nations and justice, with a view to a disposal of the same according to international law and justice."

The sincerity of this intention, and the real desire of the President, and of the government of the United States, to terminate, not only in the most just but in the most prompt manner, this affair, highly interesting to all the nations having relations with the United States this sincerity, and the reality of this desire, could not be, in my view, subject to the slightest doubt. I am convinced of it, and it is this conviction which causes me, Mr. Secretary of State, to ask you now to communicate to me the proofs which Major General Butler pretends to have had in his hands to accuse the consul of the Netherlands and to seize the deposit as unlawful; for it is upon proofs existing at the time of the seizure, and solely upon these proofs, upon which Major General Butler must rely; ex post factum there will be nothing to allege.

You could not, I think, have any difficulty in according to my request, be. cause it can only be upon the proofs which Major General Butler has pretended to have that you retain in your possession the articles taken from the consul, who, being then in possession, had in his favor the legal presumption of a just title.

I pray you, then, sir, to be pleased, by communicating the papers which I have the honor of asking of you, to enable me to enlighten the government of the King as soon as possible upon this subject; and I avail myself of this oppor. tunity to renew to you the assurances of my high consideratiou.

ROEST VAN LIMBURG. Hon. Mr. SEWARD,

Secretary of State of the United States of America.

Mr. Van Limburg to Mr. Seward.

[Translation.]
LEGATION OF THE NETHERLANDS,

Washington, June 7, 1862. From the first interview which I had the honor to have with you in regard to the lamentable events which took place in the course of last month at the consulate of the Netherlands at New Orleans, you have evinced a spirit of conciliation the extent of which I take pleasure in acknowledging. You have assured me that all which I could reasonably ask of you would be accorded to me.

I submitted to you the information and reports which I had received. These were sufficient to induce you to take the initiative in the reparation which at first seemed to you to be due. But, from the note which, to this end, you were pleased to address to me day before yesterday, and from the answer which I made to it on the day following, it appears that you cannot at present decide as to the allegation of Major General Butler; whilst I, until the contrary is proved, must consider our consul as acting entirely in good faith, and as being perfectly in the right to receive from the hands of the agent of the firm of Hope & Co., of Amsterdam, a deposit for that firm. There was not, according to the law of nations and universally received usages, any obligation on the part of the government of the United States to verify the contents of the kegs, which the agent of the house of Hope & Co. had declared to him to contain eight hundred thousand Mexican dollars.

In this state of affairs, which your sense of justice will hasten, as you have assured me, to put an end to as soon as possible, our consul would find himself, without some new proof of conciliation and equity on your part, in a false position. Your note of the 5th says that his consular commission and the exequatur of the President (improperly taken out of his possession by Major General Butler) will be returned to him immediately, and that he will he " permitted" to resume his functions. I have no reason to suppose, sir, that you have used this term with any positive intention; therefore I flatter myself that, while reserving to yourself any ulterior action against the consul, you will not object to considering him as I do, and as justice considers every man against whom nothing has been proved, as honorable and as acting in good faith; and that, consequently, you will not refuse to “invite” him, through my interposition, to resume his functions, while adding that you cannot consider him otherwise than as acting in good faith, and as honorable, until the contrary be proved; and while waiting for the report of the commissioner whom you are going to send to New Orleans, I have the honor, Mr. Secretary of State, to request you to be pleased, also, as soon as possible, to honor me with your reply in this regard; and I profit by this new opportunity to reiterate to you the assurances of my high consideration.

ROEST VAN LIMBURG. Hon. Mr. SEWARD,

Secrctary of State of the United States of America, &c., &c., dc.

Mr. Seward to Mr. Van Limburg.

DEPARTMENT OF STATE;

Washington, June 7, 1862. Sir: I have the honor to acknowledge the receipt of your notes of yesterday and of this date on the subject of the proceedings of Major General Butler with reference to the consul of the Netherlands at New Orleans. The first of these communications presents several points which merit special notice, but I prefer to reserve a reply to them in detail until I shall have received information in regard to the instructions upon the subject which you expect from your government.

In answer to your note of this date, I have to remark that, in conformity

with that conciliatory disposition which it has been my purpose to show, and which you very liberally acknowledge, I have no objection to your writing to the consul that it is the President's expectation that he will resuine and continue in the discharge of his official functions until there shall be further occasion for him to relinquish them.

I avail myself of this occasion, sir, to offer to you a renewed assurance of my very high consideration.

WILLIAM H. SEWARD. Mr. ROEST VAN LIMBURO, &c., &c., c.

Mr. Seward to Mr. Van Limburg.

DEPARTMENT OF STATE,

IVashington, June 7, 1862. Sir: In answer to your second note of this date, in which you request the proof apon which Major General Butler based his proceedings against the consul of the Netherlands at New Orleans, I have to inform you, with entire frankness, that

my communications to you upon the subject have been drawn from the report of that officer with reference to his proceedings in that city, generally, up to the 16th of last month, the date of the report. That document not being accompanied by any proof of the allegations against the consul, it is quite beyond my power, at this time, to comply with your request. I offer to you, sir, a renewed assurance of my very high consideration.

WILLIAM H. SEWARD. Mr. Roest VAN LIMBURG, f., fr., fc.

Mr. Van Limburg to Mr. Seward.

[Translation.]

LEGATION OF The Netherlands,

Washington, June 9, 1862. SIR: I have the honor to acknowledge the receipt of your note of the 7th of this month, in which you do me the honor to say to me, among other things, that you have no objection that I should write to the consul of the Netherlands at New Orleans “that it is the President's expectation that he will resume and continue in the discharge of his official functions, until there shall be further occasion for him to relinquish them.”

I regret, sir, not to be able to accept that formula without submitting it to the judgment of the government of the King, and I have the honor to renew to you the assurances of my high consideration.

ROEST VAN LIMBURG. Hon. Mr. SEWARD,

Secretary of State of the United States.

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