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[Translation.-Note.]

The second paragraph of the communication of the Secretary of State of the United States to the minister of the Netherlands, dated the 5th of June last, is thus conceived: “The statements,” &c., &c.

In his letter of the 9th of June the minister, referring to this passage, says to the consul, “I invite you to write to me about it."

A few lines are sufficient to explain all.

Mr. Conturié is a wine and liquor merchant. His store and counting-room are at No. 33 Pavier street. The Netherlands consulate, where the silver and all the articles seized and carried off by order of General Butler were found, was on the premises No. 109 Canal street. The localities are distinct, and the distance which separates the two establishments is near about equal to that between the White House and Willards' Hotel, at Washington.

On the 10th of May last, at about two o'clock in the afternoon, Mr. Conturió was at the consulate; hitherto he had no idea or suspicion of the lamentable acts which were going soon to blaze out. Hearing a voice in the office say that a federal officer liad come to see Mr. Conturié, le stepped forward, saying that lie was Mr. Conturié, consul of the Netherlands. The federal officer exhibited 110 order from General Butler; he put no question concerning the articles which might be found in the keeping of the consul; he asked no information or erplanations on any subject, but confined himself to saying and doing what has been stated in the report of the consul.

These are the preliminary facts plainly reported; the rest are stated in the consular report. Mr. Conturié asserts that, if information of the character of that spoken of in the communication of the Secretary of State had been asked of him, in the name of General Butler or on the part of any other established authority, he would have hastened to furnish it, because no reason or cause can be imagined for refusing it, since acts of deposit were recorded in the books of the consulate. Mr. Conturié would have done, assuredly, with an earnestness at least equal, before the very lamentable occurrence of the 10th of May, what he did a few days afterwards of his own motion,

These preliminary facts being thus set forth in relief, there necessarily flows therefrom the conclusion that Mr. Couturie has not incurred the slightest blame of having exaggerated to himself the privileges and immunities of the Netherlandish consul and consulate. And if any mention has not hitherto been made of the absence of previous demand for information, on the part of General Butler, concerning the articles deposited in the consulate, it is because a report is, naturally, only a narrative of facts which have actually taken place. Negatire facts cannot find a place in it sometimes, except by way of explanation, clucidation, or justification.

New ORLEANS, August 11, 1862.

Mr. Scward to Mr. Van Limburg.

DEPARTMENT OF STATE,

Washington, September 4, 1862. Sir: I have had the honor of receiving your excellency's note of the 30th of August, in which you designate Amedec Conturié, of New Orleans, as the person who shall receive the eight hundred thousand dollars of coin which was taken from that person by direction of Major General Butler, and which, it has now been decided by this government, was a lawful deposit with him, made by the agent of, and for the account of, Messrs. Hope & Company, of Amsterdam.

I have the honor, further, to state that instructions will be immediately given by this government to Major General Butler, or General Shepley, military governor at New Orleans, or other authority there having possession of the coin, to deliver the same to the said Amedee Conturié, and take his acknowledgment for the same.

I regret that I do not find in your note a designation of any person to receive other articles which were taken from Mr. Conturié by direction of Major General Butler, and which this government has decided shall be delivered to such person as you shall designate, as you were informed by a note written by me to your excellency on the 20th day of August last.

Having submitted your note to the President, I am authorized to say that he accepts, with entire satisfaction, the explanation of the sense in which the word "outrage” was used in your previous communication of the 28th of July, and that your remarks upon that subject are entirely liberal and generous.

In regard to the transfer of the administration of civil affairs at New Orleans from Major General Butler to Governor Shepley, you admit that I wrote you, on the 5th of June last, that the President has made a military governor of the State of Louisiana, who has been instructed to pay due respect to all consular rights and privileges. You then call my attention to the fact that certain news. papers, among which is the New York Times, so late as the 26th of last month, published letters and other documents showing that Major General Butler was still exercising civil functions at New Orleans so late as the 14th and the 16th of August, and you ask me to state whether these facts are authentic.

I find not the least difficulty in answering this inquiry. The commission to General Shepley as military governor of Louisiana had already been issued and forwarded to him at New Orleans when I communicated this fact to you on the 5th of June last. Postal and commercial communications with New Orleans had been entirely cut off by the civil war for a year previous to the capture of that city by Major General Butler, and they had not been at all restored when my letter to you was written. There was a considerable and unavoidable delay of the commission on its way to Governor Shepley. When it reached him, at New Orleans, he thought it necessary, in view of the military situation existing there, to come to this capital for conference with the government, and for other purposes, before assuming the functions to which he was invited. Having done so, he returned to New Orleans and assumed the trust to which he had been appointed, at a day later than the 16th of August, and he is now exercising the

I need not say that these delays unavoidably resulted from a novel situation of affairs, and were not looked for nor even foreseen by the President.

After this explanation, it does not seem important that I should remark, at present, on the other topics discussed in your note. I shall, however, cheerfully recur to them if it shall

seem necessary, when you shall have favored me with the respected views of your government concerning the general subject embraced in our correspondence, as it is affected by the communication I had the honor to make to you on the 20th day of August last.

I avail myself of this opportunity to renew to you, sir, the assurance of my high consideration.

WILLIAM H. SEWARD. Mr. ROEST Van LIMBURG.

same.

Mr. Van Limburg to Mr. Seward.

[Translation.)

New York, September 10, 1862. Sir: I have had the honor to receive the letter, under date of the 4th of this month, through which you have been pleased to inform me that instructions would be given immediately to return to Mr. Amédeé Conturié the eight handred thousand dollars in coin. With respect to the question of ascertaining to whom the other articles seized at his house should be restored, I have the honor to request you, sir, to be pleased to cause them also to be returned to Mr. Conturié, whom I have invited to receive them, as well as the $800,000.

I beg you, sir, to be pleased to accept my thanks for the explanations which you have been pleased to give me with respect to the protraction of the civil functions of Major General Butler in New Orleans, and from them I am inspired with the hope that the justice of the President and government of the United States will hereafter exempt the foreign consuls from official relations with him. I would be happy to be enabled to thank you for it, and to find in it a new bond for the maintenance of the relations for so long a period sincerely friendly between our two countries.

I have already communicated your last letter to the government of the King, from whom I await further instructions, which, meeting with favorable dispositions on the part of the government of the United States, will enable us, I trust, to terminate this deplorable affair in such a manner as we both had hoped we should at our first interview upon this subject. I have the honor, sir, to renew to you the assurances of my high consideration.

ROEST VAN LIMBURG. Hon. William H. SEWARD,

Secretary of State of the U. S. of America.

Mr. Seward to Mr. Van Limburg.

DEPARTMENT OF STATE,

Washington, September 13, 1862. Sir: I have the honor to acknowledge the receipt of your note of the 10th instant, in which, after referring to the restoration of eight hundred thousand dollars in coin to Mr. Amédeé Conturié, you request me to cause the other articles seized at his house also to be restored to him, and to state, in reply, that the Secretary of War will accordingly be asked to give directions in the proper quarter to that effect.

I avail myself of this opportunity to renew to you, sir, the assurance of my high consideration.

WILLIAM H. SEWARD. Mr. RoesT VAN LIMBURG, &c., &c., &c.

Mr. Van Limburg to Mr. Seward.
[Received September 29, 1862.]

[Translation.] The undersigned, envoy cxtraordinary and minister plenipotentiary of his Majesty the King of the Netherlands, has the honor to submit herewith to the honorable Mr. Seward, Secretary of State of the United States of America, a letter from the consul of the Netherlands at Philadelphia, showing that the American authorities have enrolled him for military duty, notwithstanding his affidavit as consul of the Netherlands for the States of Pennsylvania and Delaware.

If the undersigned had to demonstrate the illegality of this proceeding, be would begin by citing to the Secretary of State the letter of Attorney General Cushing to Mr. Marcy, Secretary of State, under date of the 4th of November, 1854, in which, speaking of consuls, it is said: “They are privileged from political or military service.” But the undersigned thinks it will be sufficient to bring the fact to the knowledge of the Secretary of State to justify an expectation that the government of the United States will be pleased to give the necessary orders that consular prerogatives shall be respected in the various States of the United States.

The undersigned has the honor to renew to the honorable Mr. Seward the assurances of his high consideration.

ROEST VAN LIMBURG. Hon. Mr. SEWARD,

Secretary of State of the U.S. of America, &c., &c., dc.

Mr. Zeigler to Mr. Burlage.

CONSULATE OF THE NETHERLANDS,

Philadelphia, September 26, 1862. Dear Sir: 'Your communications of the 24th instant are to hand; also the copy of the tariff and shipping trade laws of his Majesty's government.

T'he State and United States authorities here have enrolled me liable for military draft, notwithstanding my affidavit as consul of his Majesty the King of the Netherlands for the States of Pennsylvania and Delaware, claiming exemption therefrom.

The commissioners have decided that as I am a citizen of the United States I am liable for military duty. Will you bring this subject before his excellency our minister at Washington, or shall I do it? I certainly cannot perform my functions as consul, and give protection to his Majesty's subjects, (and which, at this moment, is very necessary) if I am compelled to serve in the militia of this State or in that of the United States. The decision of the commissioners I consider uncourteous, and does not accord with the tenor of the exequatur of the President of the United States, granting me all privileges granted to consuls of the most favored nations. Your early answer as to what course I am to pursue will be thankfully received.

I will be much pleased and grateful if you will bring this matter before his excellency our minister at Washington. I am, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

GEO. H. ZEIGLER, Consul. R. C. BURLAGE,

Consul General, Nero York.

Mr. Van Limburg to Mr. Seward.

[Translation.]

New YORK, September 27, 1862. SIR: I have the honor to submit to you herewith a report from the consul general at New York, accompanied by a document drawn up by Charles Edwards, a lawyer, showing that the court of general sessions at New York has improperly interfered in a dispute between the captain of the Netherlandish vessel the Jan Van Galen and her carpenter, named Herman Nepping. There was a dispute between the captain and the carpenter in regard to the engagement of the latter, and, according to Netherlandish law, it was for the consul of the Netherlands to decide the question. The court of general sessions, to which the carpenter applied, has taken the liberty of interfering in this question of internal order, and, because the Netherlandish engagement was not in accordance with the rules of American engagements, has thought proper to discharge the carpenter from his obligations, and thus to deprive the captain of services to which he was entitled, unless the consul judged otherwise.

It is generally the practice, and admitted, that the local authorities are not to interfere in a dispute between the captain of a foreign vessel and the persons forming her crew, as regards the execution of contracts which have been entered into between them, unless the captain requests it. This is clearly cxpressed, among other things, in Article VIII of the consular convention between the United States and France, bearing date the 23d of February, 1853, in which it is said :

“The respective consuls general, consuls, vice-consuls, or consular agents, shall have exclusive charge of the internal order of the merchant vessels of their nation, and shall alone take cognizance of differences which may arise, either at sea or in port, between the captain, officers, and crew, without exception, particularly in reference to the adjustment of wages and execution of contracts. The local authorities shall not, on any pretext, interfere in these differences, but shall lend forcible aid to the consuls, when they may ask it, to arrest and imprison all persons composing the crew whom they may deem it necessary to contine.”

Now, this rule has also always been applied to Netherlandish vessels and consuls. The President, in his exequatur, accords the same privileges to the consuls of the Netherlands that he does to the consuls of the most favored nation. It is an excess of authority, therefore, which the above-mentioned court has exercised towards the Netherlandish vessel the Jan Van Galen, and an infraction of the prerogatives of the consul general of the Netherlands, to whom the decision of the question should be left.

I have the honor, Mr. Secretary of State, to invoke your good offices to the end that the government of the United States may be pleased to reprimand the court of general sessions of New York; to issue the necessary orders that courts or judges of the United States will henceforth refrain from interfering in dispates of that kind; and to grant to the captain of the vessel the Jan Van Galen, for the damage he has sustained, an indemnification the determination of which I willingly leave to the generosity of the government of the United States.

I embrace this new opportunity, sir, 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, &c., fr., gr.

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