Page images


Miscellaneous letters and addresses to the President and others, from-
No. 29. The Creoles of Guadalupe, (colored.)
No. 30. Americans at Nice.
No. 31. Democrats of Lyons.
No. 32. Paul Thouzery.
No. 33. Imbert.
No. 34. A sealed letter.

[ocr errors]

Mr. Hunter to Mr. Bigelow. No. 189.)


Washington, July 3, 1865. SIR: I enclose for your information a copy of a letter of the 22d ultimo,* addressed by the Secretary of the Navy to Rear-Admiral Goldsborough, upon the subject of the withdrawal from the insurgents of the character of belligerents, and the proceedings of the Navy Department in view thereof. I am, sir, your obedient servant,

W. HUNTER, Acting Secretary. John Bigelow, Esq., Sc., 8c., sc.

Mr. Seward to Mr. Bigelow. No. 190.)

Departmext of STATE,

Washington, July 5, 1865. Sir: I have received your despatch No. 118, of the 15th ultimo, enclosing a copy of your note of the 12th of May last to Mr. Drouyn de Lhuys, and of his reply of the 14th ultimo, in which he informs you that the minister of public works, with the minister of the interior, has issued an order which authorized Mr. Zumpstein to undertake operations at Havre for the engagement and transportation of emigrants, without material restrictions. I will thank you to convey to Mr. Drouyn de Lhuys an expression of the satisfaction of the President with the course of the French government in the matter. I am, sir, your obedient servant,

WILLIAM H. SEWARD. John Bigelow, Esq., &c., fr., &c.

Mr. Seward to Mr. Bigelow. No. 191.1


Washington, July 6, 1865. Sir: I have read with care the essay of the Count de Montalembert upon the victory of the north in the United States, transmitted with your despatch of the 31st of May, No. 110. While it is written with great candor, it gives abundant evidence of study, care, and scrupulous accuracy in regard to facts. At the same time it has a dignity of thought and a largeness of philosophy that entitle it to be classed with that remarkable work of de Tocqueville with which the whole world is acquainted. I am glad to see that the United States have found so great and generous a defender within the conservative ranks of France. The work must exert a great and favorable influence in Europe. I shall endeavor to have it reproduced here, for it contains matter very worthy of reflection by even those of us who have acted in the late political trials through which the country has passed. The venerable statesman's work has attracted the attention of the President, and he authorizes me to signify his approval of what I have tbus written upon the subject. It may

* See enclosure to instructions No. 1473 to Mr. Adams.



you to make these sentiments, thus approved, known to the Count. I am, sir, your obedient servant,

WILLIAM H. SEWARD. John Bigelow, Esq., Sc., 8c., &c.

Mr. Bigelow to Mr. Seward. No. 144.]


Paris, July 14, 1865. SIR : You will not fail to remark that the European press has been much occupied for the last few days with a report, put in circulation by a London print, that a new movement was on foot among the leading powers to bring about a European congress. A few days since I casually referred to this subject in a conversation with Mr. Drouyn de Lhuys, and asked if there was anything in it. He said, nothing at all—no more than in the report of the Anglo-French alliance against us. He, however, went on to say that he advised the Emperor originally to propose the congress, though he knew it would then be rejected. He thinks it will one day be accepted, and hopes that day may come as speedily as possible. France, however, he said, has not renewed and will not renew the proposal, but will wait till it comes from the other powers.

My impression is, that this discussion has been opened by parties desirous of sounding public opinion again upon the subject, and of leading it to a congress, which is coming to be regarded more and more as the only escape for most of the European states from impending bankruptcy and a general war, which would either precede or follow such a crisis.

La France, which passes for a sort of organ of the Foreign Office here, contradicted the report of the London paper, that M. Drouyn de Lhuys had been corresponding again on the subject of a congress, and last evening it published the following paragraph :

“The International, outbidding the Pall Mall, of London, the Cologne Gazette and the North German Gazette, pretends that Earl Russell would now be favorable to a congress, provided the United States would consent to send a delegate, and that the congress should sit in London.

« The information of the International is no more correct than that of the other journals above mentioned ; and we certify anew that there has not been recently any exchange of communications between the great powers in relation to a European congress.” I am, sir, with great respect, your very obedient servant,


Secretary of State.

Mr. Seward to Mr. Bigelow. No. 202.)


Washington, July 17, 1865. Sir: Your despatch of the 27th ultimo, No. 132, and its twenty-three accom. paniments, have been received, in connexion with the similar papers transmitted with your No. 109, of the 31st of May. These manifestations of sympathy and condolence in our great national bereavement, and at the same time of congratulation upon the triumph of the great cause with which the late President was so fully identified, coming as they do from highly respectable and intelligent groups of the people of France, are gratefully accepted in this country, and are deserving each of a special and cordial acknowledgment. As it is found, how. ever, to be impossible to adopt that course, it is proposed, when all of such papers likely to be addressed to this government or this department shall have been received, to prepare a form of acknowledgment which will answer for all.

I have forwarded to Mrs. Lincoln and to the Masonic lodge those communications which were addressed, respectively, to them. I am, sir, your obedient servant,

WILLIAM H. SEWARD. John Bigelow, Esq., fc., 8c., &c.

[ocr errors]

Mr. Scward to Mr. Bigelow. No. 204.]

Department of State,

Washington, July 18, 1865. Sir: Referring to my despatch of the 17th instant, No. 202, in regard to the replies to be made to the expressions of condolence and sympathy on the part of associations and individuals in France with the government and people of the United States, which have been called forth by the assassination of our late President, I will thank you to convey to the proper party, in each case, in which the communication has been addressed to or intended for the President, this government, this department, or the people at large, the grateful acknowledg. ments of the government and people of the United States for the neighborly and fraternal spirit thus evinced, in such terms as your judgment may suggest. It is, however, considered that, out of proper deference to the government of France, you should submit a copy of your proposed reply to the minister for foreign affairs, and obtain his sanction to the proceeding before sending it out. I am, sir, your obedient servant,

WILLIAM H. SEWARD. John BIGELOW, Esq., 80., 80., 8c.

Mr. Hunter to Mr. Bigelow. No. 212.)


Washington, July 28, 1865. Sir: I enclose a copy of a letter of the 25th instant, from Mr. Alexander Henschel, of New York, relative to the duty levied by the French government on hops exported from American ports, which he states is higher than that levied on the article when exported from the ports of other countries. As this impost prevents American exporters from competing with those of other countries, it will discourage the exportation from this country of an article favorably received in the markets of France; and as the present tax is not conceived to be a benefit to his Majesty's revenue, or to the dealers in the commodity, either in France or in the United States, I will thank you to make such a representation of the matter to his Majesty's government as, in your opinion, will best convince it of the advantages to be derived from a modification of the present prohibitory impost. I am, sir, your obedient servant,

W. HUNTER, Acting Secretary. John Bigelow, Esq., Sc., fr., dr.


Mr, Henschel to Mr. Seward.


Nero York, July 25, 1865. SIR: I beg leave to call the attention of the department to a recent reduction in the impost duty on hops imported into France from German ports to 24 francs p: 100 kilo., (only about two-thirds of the former rate,) to the prejudice of American hops, which still continue to pay, when imported direct from here into French ports, a duty of 54 francs p. 100 kilo.

My attention has been directed to this great disproportion by one of the hop houses in France, accompanied by the remark that this is the only draw back to prevent American hops from coming more and more into favor in France. As this article, which I have been exporting for a series of years to various countries, is only in its infancy, both as regards cultivation here as well as introduction abroad, I feel it my duty to bring the subject under the notice of the department. I am, sir, your obedient servant,


Secretary of State, Washington, D. C. P. S.-I find, subsequently, that American hops are the only ones of all foreign hops imported into France which pay such high duty.

Mr. Hunter to Mr. Bigelow.

No. 217.]


Washington, July 31, 1865. Sir: Your despatch of the 14th instant, No. 144, relative to the movement alleged to have been on foot for the purpose of convening a European congress, has been received and read with interest. I am, sir, your obedient servant,

W. HUNTER, Acting Secretary. JOHN Bigelow, Esq., &c., 8c., c.

Mr. Bigelow to Mr. Seward. No. 153.)


Paris, August 5, 1865. Sir : The letters from the Hon. Garnier Pagés, of which I have the honor to enclose copies and translations, explain themselves. Though simply an individual expression of opinion, the position which the venerable writer has occupied as one of the five executive officers under the provisional government of France in 1848, and the position which he now occupies as one of the liberal members of the Chamber of Deputies of the city of Paris, not to speak of his personal virtues and his cordial sympathy for our country and government during its recent struggles, seem to justify me in complying with his request to have his letter laid before you, which I do with his own explanation of motives addressed to myself.

I shall find an opportunity to explain to Mr. Pagés that our government has not yet returned to the elementary condition in which the French republic of 1848 found itself when it abolished capital punishment; and that the United States has no more power to abolish the death penalty than he has to abolish the constitution. The fact that such an appeal should be addressed to the President of the United States by a person so intelligent and generally well informed as Mr. Pagés, shows how imperfectly the mass, even of educated Europeans, comprehend what we have done and what we have not done during and since our great rebellion. The liberal press of Paris, without exception, I believe, shares Mr. Pagés's wishes and ignorance on this subject. I am, sir, with great respect, your very obedient servant,


Secretary of State.

Mr. Pagés to Mr. Bigelow.


DEAR MR. BIGELOW : It may seem indiscreet for any foreigner to intervene in the political acts of a nation. But I obey, without being able to define it, a sentiment which leads me to consider myself in some sort a member of the great American republic, and to associate myself with its destinies. 1 yield, doubtless, to that fraternal principle of common sympathy which unites all men and all peoples who have the same ideas and desire to attain ihe same end. I do not hesitate, therefore, to submit to you a letter dictated by my ardent desire to see the government of the United States succeed in a difficult position, and avoid the embar. rassments of the legal repression which frequently transforms criminals into martyrs, and thus gives results contrary to those which are sought to be obtained.

If this letter accords with the intuitions of your goverument, and you think its publication would be useful, please have it presented through the Hon. Mr. Seward to your President. But as I do not desire in any manner to increase the weight of the responsibility which now rests upon the eminent man at the head of your republic, I beg that you will pass this letter by in silence if it can only clash with their policy.

Have the kindness, in any case, to present to Mr. Seward my most affectionate compliments, and tell him how happy I have been at his recovery and at your successes. Yours, very devotedly,


(Enclosure No. 4.- Translation.]

Mr. Pagés to the President. Mr. PRESIDENT: When the French people resumed possession of their sovereignty, the 24th of February, 1848, when they proclaimed the republic, the mivister of the United States was the first representative of a friendly nation who bastened to the Hotel de Ville of Paris to convey the expressiou of bis fraternal sympathies. The minister, Mr. Rush, and the venerable president of the provisional government, M. Dupont, (de l'Eure,) in a holy embrace, tightened the bonds of alliance of the two great republics.

Thut very day the French people, through the medium of their improvised representatives, proclaimed the abolition of the death penalty in political matters. This act of regeneration, which consecrated an era in the progress of humanity, excited universal transports.

From that solemn day the words " revolution and republic," effacing the stain of bloodshed, signitied “clemency and fraternity.” The revolution and the republic had brokeu in pieces the political scaffold.

The poignant regrets of defeat, the anguish of a troubled spirit, the corroding memory of faults committed, and, if the necessities of legal repression require it, banishment to a foreign land and the sufferings of exile, seemed a sufficient punishment, an expiation sufficiently

You will, therefore, consider it as simply natural, Mr. President, and you will kindly permit us who bear in our hearts the great democratic traditions; who have never ceased to offer our ardent prayers for the triumph of the American Union, and who have so adinired it siuce it has proclaimed the abolition of slavery; who have felt a thrill of joy in learning the end of the civil war, and of sorrow in hearing of the cruel death of President Lincoln, to come in $ympathy to tell you with what livery satisfaction we should learn that the cry of buman conscience which issued from the Hotel de Ville of Paris in 1848 has found its echo at the White House of Washington in 1865.

Be pleased, Mr. President, to accept, with the expression of our fraternal regard for the great American people, the assurance of our distinguished regard for yourself. Yours, devotedly,

GARNIER PAGES. The PRESIDENT of the United States.


« PreviousContinue »