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(No. 4.

Hæc olim meminisse juvabit.-VIRGIL.

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Public Documents.

(Laid before congress on Monday, 1st of June-concluded from p. 238) Extract of a letter from Mr. Russell to the Secretary of State, dated London, January 14, 1812.

"I have the honor to acknowledge the receipt of your two letters of the 27th of November last.

"It would have afforded me the highest satisfaction to have been able to communicate to you, by the return of the Hornet, the revocation of the orders in council: hitherto, however, there has been exhibited here no disposition to repeal them."

Although the proof of the revocation of the French decrees contained in the letter of Mr. Bartow, is, when taken by itself, of no very conclusive character, yet it ought, when connected with that previously exhibited to this government, to be admitted as satisfactorily establishing that revocation; and in this view I have thought it to be my duty to present it here. I have the honor to be, &c.


JONA. RUSSELD [Enclosed in Mr. Russell's of February 9th, 1812.] Mr. Russell to the Marquis Wellesley. London, 8th February, 1812. MY LORD, I have the honor herewith to hand to your lordCopy of a letter from Mr. Russell to the Secretary of State, dated ship, a copy of a letter addressed to me, on the 29th of last month, Lendon,January 14, 1812. by Mr. Barlow, the American minister at Paris. SIR,-I lament that it is not in my power to announce to you, I have felt some hesitation in communicating this letter to your by the return of Mr. Tayloe, the adoption of a system here towards lordship. lest my motive might be mistaken, and an obligation ap the United States, more just and reasonable than that of which pear to be admitted on the part of the United States, to furnish we now complain. No intimation has been given to me of an in-more evidence of the revocation of the Berlin and Milan decrees tention to abandon the offending orders in council. I have not, than has already been furnished, or than has been necessary to their hitherto, made any representation in regard to these orders, and if own conviction. I trust, however, that my conduct on this octhey are to be persisted in, as Mr. Foster declares, not only until casion will be ascribed alone to an earnest desire to prevent theevils the Berlin and Milan decrees be entirely abrogated, but until we which a continued diversity of opinion on this subject, might, uncompel the French government to admit us in France with the happily, produce.

manufactures and produce of Great Britain and her colonies, it The case of the Acastus, necessarily implies that American ves must be useless to say any thing upon the subject. The revolting sels, captured by the cruisers of France, are adjudged by the French extravagance of these pretensions is too manifest to be subject of navigation laws only, and that the Berlin and Milan [decrees] make argument, and the very attempt to reason them down would ad-no part of these laws, the Acastus being acquitted, notwithstand ing the fact of her having been boarded by an English vessel of mit that they are not too absurd for refutation.

Should Mr. Barlow furnish me with any new evidence of the war.

discontinuance of the French edicts, so far as they were in deroga To the declaration of Mr. Barlow, that since his residence tion of our rights, I shall present it to this government, and once at Paris there had been uo instance of a vessel, under either more (however unnecessary it may appear) afford it an opportu- the Berlin or Milan decrees, being detained or molested by the nity of revoking its orders, which can no longer be pretended to French government, I beg leave to add that previous to his resi rest on our acquiescence in the decrees of its enemy, from the un-dence, and subsequent to the first of November 1810, these decres righteous operation of which we are specially exempted. were not executed in violation of the neutral or national rights of the United States. I have, &c. (Signed)


Mr. Russell to Mr. Monroe.

Whatever doubts might have originally been entertained of the efficient nature of the revocation of those decrees, on account of the form in which that measure was announced, those doubts London, January 23, 1812. ought surely now to yield to the uniform experience of fifteen SIR,-Yesterday Í understood the case of the Female, one of the months, during which period not a single fact has occurred to jusessels captured under the orders in council, came to trial before sir tify them. William Scott. He rejected a motion for time to produce evidence of I do not urge in confirmation of this revocation, the admission the revocation of the Berlin and Milan decrees in relation to theUnited of American vessels with cargoes arrived in the ports of France af States, and suggested that there would be a question of law, if such ter having touched in England, as stated by Mr. Barlow, and as aerevocation, when shewn, would be considered by the British go-cords with what occurred during my residence at Paris, because vernment as sufficient to require the repeal of the orders in coun- such admission is evidence only of the cessation of the municipal eil. At any rate, that he was bound to consider these orders to be operation of the decrees in relation to the United States, of in force until their repeal should be notified to him by this go which it cannot be presumed that the British government re verminent. The Female was condemned. quires an account.


I have the honor, &c. &c.


Hon. James Monroe, &c.
Extract of a letter from Mr. Russell to the Secretary of State, dated
London, January 25, 1812.
"Since I had the honor to address you on the 14th inst. by the
Hornet, I have received no communication, either from Washing
ton or Pais.

"The Hornet did not leave Cowes until the 18th, owing, I presume to the indisposition of the captain, whoin I understand to have been very ill. I dismissed Mr. Tayloe here on the 14th."

Extract of a letter from Mr. Russell to Mr. Monroe, dated
London, February 3, 1812.

I cannot forbear to persuade myself that the proof now added to the mass which was already before your lordship, will satisfactorily establish, in the judgment of his Britannic majesty's government, the revocation of the decrees in question, and lead to such a repeal of the orders in council in regard to the United States, as will restore the friendly relations and commercial inter course between the two countries. I have the honor to be, &c.


JONA. RUSSELL. [Enclosed in Mr. Russell's of February 9th 1812.] Mr. Barlow to Mr. Russell.

Paris, 29th January, 1812. SIR-The ship Agastus, captain Cottle, from Norfolk bound to "Since I had the honor to address you, on the 5th ultimo, I have Tonningen, with tobacco, had been boarded by an English fri received your communications of the 20th December, through the gate and was taken by a French privateer and brought into Fe good offices of Mr. Foster. camp for the fact of having been so boarded. This was in Noven. While I lament the necessity, as I most sincerely do, of the ber last. On the second of December I stated the facts to the duke course inlicated by the proceedings of congress; yet it is gratify- of Bassano; and in a few days after, the ship and cargo were or ing to learn that it will be pursued with vigor and unanimity.dered by the emperor to be restored to the owners on condition Lam persuaded that this government has presumed much on our that she had not violated the French navigation laws, which lat weakness and divisions, and that it continues to believe that we have ter question was sent to the council of prizes to determine. The not energy and union enough to make efficient war. council determined that no such violation had taken place, and the "I have this moment learnt that the Hornet has returned from slip and cargo were definitively restored to esprain Cottie. Cherbourg to Cowes, and I understand by a letter from the consul To the above fact, I can add that since my residence here, sever there, that there is a Mr. Porter on board with despatches from ral American vessels and cargoes have arrived and been admitted Mr. Barlow for this legation; but he has not yet made his appear in the ports of France, after having touched in England, the ance here. I am obliged to close this letter without waiting for fact being declared; and there is no instance within that perit d, of him, as I understand the next post may not arrive at Liverpool in vessel in either of the cases of the Berlin and Milan decreta be Season for the Orbit." ing detained or molested by the Fretich government. I have the honor to be, &c.

Copy of a letter from Mr. Russell to the Secretary of State, dated] London, 9th February 1312. SIR-I have the honor to transmit to you enclosed, a copy of a letter, dated 29th ult. from Mr. Barlow, and a copy of the note in which I yesterday communicated that letter to the marquis Well lesley.




M. Russell to Mr. Monroe.
Lonion, 21st February, 1812.
SIR,- regret that in announcing to you the cessation of the
brestrictions on the reg ney here, I cannot, at the zaune time, ap.

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prise you of the adoption of a more just and enlightened policy, in favor of the United States than has hitherto prevailed.

The partial changes in the ministry will probably produce no change of its character, or lead to an abandonment of the existing system in relation to us.

1 have the honor to be. &c.


(Signed) The hon.James Monroe, secretary of state of U.S.

Mr. Russell to Mr. Monroe.

Loulon, 22d February, 1812. SIR,-I have the honor to hand you enclosed, a copy of a letter to of me, from the earl of Liverpool, relating to a person by the name Bowman, said to be a British subject, and forcibly detained on board the United States' ship Hornet, together with copies of the deposition of Elizabeth Eleanor Bowman, which accompanied it, and of my reply. I have the honor to be, &c. (Signed) The hon. James Monroe, &c. &c.


Extract of a letter from Mr. Russell to Mr. Monroe, dated London, March 4th, 1812. "Many American vessels which had for a considerable time been wind-bound in the ports of this country, were at length released on the 29th ultimo, by an easterly wind, and took their departure for the United States. By some of those vessels, particularly 'the Friends,' you will have received many letters from me; and you will have learnt, as nearly as it was in my power to inform you, what in your letter of the 18th of January you desire to knownamely," the precise situation of our affairs with England." "Since my letters of the 19th and 22d ultimo, which, I trust, will have extinguished all expectation of any change here, the motion of lord Lansdowne, on the 28th of February, and that of Mr. Brougham, yesterday, have been severally debated in the respective houses of parliament. I attended the dis cussions on both, and if any thing was wanting to prove the inflexible determination of the present ministry to persevere in the orders in council without modification or relaxation, the declarations of the leading members of administration on these ocea sions, must place it beyond the possibility of doubt. In both houses these leaders express a disposition to forbear to canvass, in the present state of our relations, the conduct of the United States towards England, as it could not be done without reproachSIR-I have the honor to transmit to you the copy of an affida-ing her in a manner to increase the actual irritation, and to do vit, sworn at Portsmouth, by Elizabeth Eleanor Bowman, stating away what lord Bathurst stated to be the feeble hopes of preventing herself to be the wite of William Bowman, one of his majesty's war. subjects, now detained against his will on board the United States' "In the house of commons, Mr. Rose virtually confessed that sloop Hornet, at present in Cowes' road. the orders in council were maintained to promote the trade of You cannot but be aware of the urgent necessity of putting the England at the expense of neutrals, and as a measure of cotrimerfacts, alleged in this document, into an immediate train of inves-cial rivalry with the United States. When Mr. Canning inveightigation; and I am to request that you will communicate withouted against this new (he must have meant newly acknowledged) loss of time, with the commanding officer of the Hornet, in order ground of defending these orders, and contended that they could that he may afford you all the information in his power, and that be justified only on the principle of retaliation, on which they the vessel may not put to sea before the result of the enquiry shall were avowedly instituted, and that they were intended to produce be ascertained, in a manner satisfactory to yourself and to this go the effects of an actual blockade, and fiable to all the incidents of such blockade-that is, that they were meant only to distress the You must likewise be aware, that this government has no power enemy-and that Great Britain had no right to defeat this operato prevent the issuing of a writ of habeas corpus by the friends of tion by an intercourse with that enemy which she denied to neuBowman; and that, in that case, it would be impossible to impede trals, Mr. Percival replied, "that the orders were still supported or delay its execution, and the consequent removal of this ques-on the principle of retaliation, but that this very principle involv tion out of the hands of the two governments, into those of the leed the license trade; for as France, by her decrees, had said that, gai force and authorities of this country. no nation should trade with her which traded with England


The Earl of Liverpool to Mr. Russell

Foreign Office, 20th February, 1812.

Anxious to prevent any such proceeding, the inconveniences of England retorted, that no country should trade with France but which, even if they did not involve the possibility of a forcible ex-through England. He asserted, that not even the partial, nor even ecution of the legal process, might yet be considerable, I request the total repeal of the Berlin and Milan decrees, as they related to your immediate attention to this communication, and I confidently America, or to any other nation, or all other nations, could form hope that you will, by affording the means of an amicable investi- any claim on the British government, while the continental sysgation, supercede the necessity, in which the friends of Bowman tem, so called, continued in operation. He denied that this system may otherwise feel themselves, of taking the course to which I or any part of the Berlin and Milan decrees were merely munihave before alluded.


I have the honor to be, &c.

Borough of Portsmouth, in the

county of Southampton.


cipal. They had not been adopted in time of peace with a view to internal regulation, but in a time of war with a hostile purpose towards England. Every clause and particle of them were to be considered of a nature entirely belligerent, and as such requiring resistance, and authorising retaliation on the part of Great Britain. Elizabeth Eleanor Bowman, of Kingston, near Portsmouth, in the acting on the principle of retaliation in these times, to return exIt was idle and absurd to suppose that Great Britain was bound, in said county, maketh oath, that she was married to William Bow-actly, and in form, like for like, and to choose the object and fash man, late of Portsmouth, shipwright, about six years ago; that he on, the mode of executing it, precisely by the measures of the en was employed in the dock-yard there, which he quitted about three emy. In adopting these measures, France had broken through years ago, and sailed from hence in the Edward Fork, a transport, all the restraints imposed by the laws of nations, and trodden unwhich was wrecked on the island of Cuba. That she was inform der foot the great conventional code received by the civilized world ed by her husband that he got from Cuba to New-York, in an Ame as prescribing rules for its conduct in war as well as in peace.-la rigan ship, and about the fourth of June last, having got in liquor, this state of things, Englandwas not bound any longer to shackle her he found himself in the Americau rendezvous there, and that he self with this code, and by so doing become the uuresisting victim of was compelled, against his inclination, to go on board the Hornet, the violence of her enemy,but she was herself released from the laws an American sloop of war, being conducted on board her by a file of nations and left at liberty to resort to any means within her power of soldiers; that the Hornet having arrived lately at Cowes,she re to injure and distress that enemy and to bring it to an observance ceived a letter from her husband, requesting her to come on board of the jus gentium which it had so egregiously and wantonly vio to see him; that she accordingly went on board her, but was kept lated. Nor was England to be restricted any more in the extent along-side the sloop about half an hour before the officer would than in the form of retaliation; but she had a right, both as to the admit her on board; that the permission to remain on board was quantity and manner, to inflict upon the enemy, all the evil in her for half an hour, but the officers would not afterwards permit her to quit the ship until the following Friday.That her husband power, until this enemy should retrace its steps, and renounce, not told her that the officer threatened to punish him for having in and every other of its belligerent measures incompatible with the only verbally, but practically, its decrees, its continental system, formed her where he was; and he also told her there were a great old acknowledged laws of nations. Whatever neutrals might sufmany English on board, several of whom would be glad to quit fer from the retaliatory measures of England, was purely incidenther; also, that some men on board much wished her away from al, and as no injustice was intended to them, they had a right to this country, but that she does not know the names of any of the complain of none. And he rejoiced to observe that no charge of parties. That the said William Bowman, who passed on board the such injustice had that night been brought forward in the house. Hornet by the name of William Elby, is now detained on board As England was contending for the defence of her maritime rights. her against his will, and is very anxious to quit the American sloop and for the preservation of her national existence, which essen Hornet, and to return to his native country.

The mark of


Sworn at Portsmouth, in the said county, ou the 25th day of January, 1812, before me the same having been first read, and she having set her mark thereto in my presence. (Signed)


tially depended on the maintenance of those rights, she could not he expected, in the prosecution of this great and primary interest, to arrest or vary her course to listen to the pretensions of neutral which the imperious policy of the times indirectly and uninter nations, or to remove the evils, however they might be regretted, tionally extended to them,

"As the newspapers of this morning give but a very imperfect report of this speech of Mr. Percival, I have thought it to be my One of his majesty's justices of the peace for the duty to present you with a more particular account of the doctrines county of Southampton. which were maintained in it, and which so vitally affect the rightand interests of the United States.

Mr. Russell to the Earl of Liverpool.

London, 21st February, 1812.

"I no longer entertain a hope that we can honorably avoid war."

MY LORD-I have the honor to inform your lordship that the United States' sloop Hornet left Cowes on the 13th of this month. Extract of a letter from Mr. Russell to the Secretary of State. The statement of this fact, does away. I presume, the necessity of a more particular reply to your lordship's note of yesterday, concerning William Bowman, a seaman on board that ship. I have the honor, &c. &c.

(Signed) The most noble the Earl of Liverpoot


London, 20th March; 1812.

"I had the honor to address you on the 4th instant, giving a brief account of the debate in the house of commons on the preceding evening; since then no change in relation to us has taken place There."

Extract of a letter from Mr. Russell to the Secretary of State. French decrees are officially declared to remain in London, 28th March, 1812.

Since I had the honor to address you a few days since, nothing has occurred here to induce a hope of any change in our favor.” Extract of a letter from Mr. Russell to the Secretary of State. Londen, 9th April, 1812. “Since my last respects to you, nothing of importance to us has

-occurred here."

State Papers.

(Laid before Congress on Friday the 5th inst.) To the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States. I transmit for the information of congress, co pies of a correspondence of the minister plenipoten tiary of Great Britain, with the secretary of state. JAMES MADISON.

June 4th, 1812.


force against all nations not subscribing to the new maritime code promulgated in those decrees, and America with regard to her understanding as to the also without something more explicit on the part of conditions annexed by France to the repeal of those decrees. For, after what has passed, unless a full and satisfactory explanation be made on both these points, Great Britain cannot relinquish her retaliatory system against France, without implying her consent to the admissibility of the conditions in question:

These observations will, I am sure, appear sufficiently obvious to you, sir, on perusing the inclosed paper.

It will be at once acknowledged that this paper is a re-publication of the Berlin and Milan decrees, in a more aggravated form, accompanied as it is with an extension of all the obnoxious doctrines which Washington, May 30, 1812. attend those decrees, inflamed by a declaration that SIR-Notwithstanding the discouraging nature Bonaparte has annexed to France every independ of the conversation which I had the honor to have ent state in his neighborhood which had eluded with you a few days since at your office, and the cir-them; and that he was proceeding against all other cumstance of your continued silence in regard to maritime ports of Europe on the pretence that his two letters from me furnishing additional proof of system could not be permanent and complete, so the existence of the French decrees, nevertheless long as they retained their liberty with regard to there does now appear such clear and convincing it. evidence in the report of the duke of Bassano, dated

The outrageous principle here avowed, connects the 10th of March of the present year, of those de- itself obviously with the proposition too much councrees having not only never been rescinded, but of tenanced by America, that the continental system their being recently extended and aggravated in the of Bonaparte, as far as it operates to the confiscare-publication of them contained in that instru- tion of neutral property on shore, on the ground of ment, that I cannot but imagine it will seem most such property being British produce or manufac important to the president that it should be com- ture, is a mere municipal regulation which neutral municated to congress without delay, in the pre- or belligerent nations have no right to resent, besent interesting crisis of their deliberations, and cause it does not violate any principle of the law of therefore hasten to fulfill the instructions of my government in laying before the government of the United States, the enclosed Moniteur of the 16th of last March, in which is contained that report as it was made to the ruler of France and communicated to the conservative senate.

nations. It is unnecessary to recur to the various arguments by which it has been shewn that this system does not partake of the character of municipal regulation, which neutral or belligerent nations have no right to resent, because it does not violate any principle of the law of nations; but that it is a This report confirms, if any thing were wanting mere war measure, directed with the most hostile to confirm, in the most unequivocal manner, the spirit against Great Britain; and in order to extend repeated assertions of Great Britain that the Berlin this system on the principal of municipal regulation, and Milan decrees have never been revoked, how all the rights of independent neutral nations are to ever some partial and insidious relaxations of them be violated, their territories to be seized without may have been in a few instances as an encou- any other cause of war whatever, but that they may ragement to America to adopt a system benefi- be incorporated with the French nation, and thence cial to France and injurious to Great Britain, while becoming subject to her rights of dominion, re. the conditions on which alone it has been declared that those decrees will ever be revoked are here explained and amplified in a manner to leave us no hope of Bonaparte having any disposition to renounce the system of injustice which he has pursu ed so as to make it possible for Great Britain to give up the defensive measures she has been obliged to resort to.

ceive the continental system as a municipal regulation of France, and thus the mere possibility of none compliance with the whole of the system is made the ground for the occupation or invasion, the incorporation or extension of every state where the French arms can reach.

Great Britain cannot believe that America will not feel a just indignation at the full developement of I need not remind you, sir, how often it has in such a system-a system which indeed Bonaparte vain been urged by Great Britain that a copy of the has partially opened before, and has in the instances instrument should be produced by which the de-of the Hanseatic towns, of Portugal and other coun. crees of Bonaparte were said to be repealed, and tries, carried into complete execution, but which how much it has been desired that America should he has never completely unfolded in all its extent explicitly state that she did not adopt the conditions until the present moment; and in what an insulton which the repeal was offered. ing and preposterous shape does he now attempt to

It is now manifest that there was never more than bring forward and promulgate this code which he a conditional offer of repeal made by France which is to force upon all nations? He assumes the treaty we had a right to complain that America should of Utrecht to be in force, and to be a law binding have asked us to recognize as absolute, and which if upon all nations; because it suits his convenience, accepted in its extent by America, would only have at this moment when the navy of France is driven formed fresh matter of complaint and a new ground from the ocean to revive the doctrine of "free ships for declining her demands." making free goods," he has recourse to a treaty no America must feel that it is impossible for Great longer in force, in which such astipulation existed Britain to rescind her orders in council, whilst the—a treaty which, by his own express refusal at

Amiens to renew any of the ancient treaties, was her the ground upon which she has taken a hostile not then revived as even binding on Great Britain attitude against Great Britain, since the repeal of and France, between whom alone as parties to it, our orders in council, and even the renunciation of and only while they where at peace with each other our rights of blockade, would no longer suffice to could it ever have had any legal effect; yet even obtain a repeal of the Berlin and Milan decrees. this treaty is too narrow a basis for his present pre- His majesty's government cannot but hope that tensions, since he cannot find in it his rule for limit-America, considering all the extravagant pretensions ing maritime blockades to fortresses actually invest-set forth by the ruler of France, in the duke of ed, besieged and likely to be taken; no provision Bassano's report, and at the same time the resolu of any description having been made in that treaty tion to march his armies into all states, into the ports either for defining or regulating blockades.

Surely at such an instant, America will not urge Great Britain to abandon or to soften any precau tionary, any retaliatory rights against such a power. The British government not only feels itself impe riously bound to defend them, as they respect Great Britain, with all vigor, but to call upon every nation to resist such exorbitant pretensions.

If Great Britain, at such a moment, were to relax her orders in council against France, would not all other nations have reason to complain that the

of which the English flag is admitted, will acknowledge, that this doctrine and resolution constitute a complete annihilation of neutrality, and that she is bound as a neutral state to disavow and resist them. Every state that acquiesces in this report, must act upon the principle, that neutral and enemy are to be considered henceforward as the same in the lan guage of the French law of nations, and Great Britain has a right to consider that every nation who refuses to admit her flag upon the principle assumed, admits and recognises the doctrine of the report.

common cause was abandoned? America must feel that Bonaparte is not acting, I will not now trouble you, sir, with many obas indeed he never has acted, with any view of esservations relative to the blockade of May 1806, as tablishing principles of real freedom, with respect the legality of that blockade, assuming the blockad to navigation; but is merely endeavoring to cloaking force to have been sufficient to enforce it, has his determination, if possible, to ruin Great Blatterly not been questioned by you.

tain by novel demands and rejected theories of ma- I will merely remark that it was impossible Great ritime law; and America must see, that Bonaparte's Britain should receive otherwise than with the ut object is to exclude British commerce from every most jealousy, the unexpected demand made by Acoast and port of the continent; and that in pursuit merica for the repeal of the blockade as well as of the of this object, trampling on the rights of indepen orders in council, when it appeared to be made dent states, he insultingly proclaims his determina-subsequent to, if not in consequence of, one of the tion to effect it by direct invasion of those indepen-conditions in Bonaparte's pretended repeal of his dent states, which he as insultingly terms a gauran- decrees, which condition was our renouncing what tee, thus making the most solemn and sacred term he calls "our new principles of blockade;" that in the law of nations synonimous with usurpation the demand on the part of America was additional of territory and extinction of independence. Ame- and new, is sufficiently proved by reference to the rica must see, that as all the states hitherto in his overture of Mr. Pinkney, as well as from the terms power have been seized on to guarantee his system, on which Mr. Erskine had arranged the dispute he is now proceeding to destroy whatever remains with America relative to the orders in council. In of independence in other neutral states, to make that arrangement nothing was brought forward that guarantee complete. From his want of power with regard to this blockade. America would have to pass the Atlantic with his armies (a want of pow been contented at that time without any reference er for which the United States are indebted to the to it. It certainly is not more a grievance or an innaval superiority of Great Britain,) his system of a justice now than it was then. Why then is the guaranteeing force may fail as to America, but as renunciation of that blockade insisted upon now, if he cannot hope to shut American ports against Great Britain by occupancy and invasion, he hopes to effect his purpose by management and fraud, and to accomplish that by insidious relaxation which he cannot accomplish by power.

it was not necessary to insist upon it then? It is difficult to find any answer but by reference to subsequent communications between France and America, and a disposition in America to countenance France in requiring the disavowal of this Great Britain he feels is only to be rained by ex blockade and the principles upon which it rested, cluding her from every port in the world; he hopes as the condition sine qua non of the repeal of the therefore to shut every port in Europe by force, and Berlin and Milan decrees. It seems to have beevery port in America by management; he pretends come an object with America only because it was to conciliate America by applause of her conduct, prescribed as a condition by France. and a partial relaxation of his system in her favor. On this blockade and the principles and rights He accompanies the promise of repealing his de-jupon which it was founded, Bonaparte appears to crees with conditions, which he trusts America will rest the justification of all his measures for abolishnot disavow, and which he knows Great Britaining neutrality, and for the invasion of every state must reject; knowing at the same time that the re- which is not ready with him to wage a war of exlaxation of his decree will be of little use to Ameri- termination against the commerce of Great Britain. ea, without a corresponding relaxation by Great America, therefore, no doubt, saw the necessity Britain, he throws every obstacle against conces- of demanding its renunciation, but she will now see sion to America by Great Britain, making her per- that it is in reality vain either for America or Great severance in her retaliatory system more than ever Britain to expect an actual repeal of the French essential to her honor and existence, And surely decrees until Great Britain renounces: First, the it will not escape the notice, or fail to excite the in basis, viz. the blockade of 1809, on which Bonadignation of the American government, that the parte has been pleased to found them; next, the ruler of France, by taking the new ground right of retaliation as subsequently acted upon in • now assumed, has retracted the concession which the orders in council; further, till she is ready to America supposed him to have made. He has in-receive the treaty of Utrecht, interpreted and apconsistently and contemptuously withdrawn from plied by the duke of Bassano's report, as the uni

versal law of nations; and finally, till she abjures, mit without retaliation that the mere fact of comall the principles of maritime law which support mercial intercourse with British ports and subjects her established rights now more than ever essential should be made a crime in all nations, and that the to her existence as a nation. armies and decrees of France should be directed to Great Britain feels confident that America never enforce a principle so new and unheard of in war. can maintain or ultimately sanction such preten Great Britain feels that to relinquish her just sions, and his royal highness the prince regent measures of self defence and retaliation, would be to entertains the strongest hope that this last proceed-surrender the best means of her own preservation ing of France will strip her measures of every remand rights, and with them the rights of other nanant of disguise, and that America in justice to tions, so long as France maintains and acts upon what she owes to the law of nations and to her own such principles. honor as a neutral state, will instantly withdraw her countenance from the outrageous system of the French government, and cease to support by hos tile measures against British commerce the enor mous fabric of usurpation and tyranny, which France has endeavoured to exhibit to the world as

the law of nations.

I am commanded to represent to the government of America, that Great Britain feels herself entitled to expect from them an unreserved and candid disclaimer of the right of France to impose on her and on the world the maritime code which has beenthus promulgated, and to the penalties of which America is hersel; declared to be liable if she fails to subAmerica cannot now contend that the orders in mit herself to its exactions; America, cannot, for council exceed in spirit of retaliation what is de her own character, any longer temporise on this manded by the decrees, the principles, or the usur-subject, or delay coming to a distinct explanation pations of Bonaparte. The United States govern with France as well as with Great Britain, if she ment must at last be convinced that the partial rewishes to clear herself from the imputation of being laxations of those decrees in favor of America have an abettor of such injustice.

been insidiously adopted by France for the mere America, as the case now stands, has not a prepurpose of inducing her to close her ports against tence for claiming from Great Britain a repeal of Great Britain, which France cannot effect herself her orders in council. She must recollect that the by force, and she must admit that if Great Britain British government never for a moment counte were now to repeal her orders in council against nanced the idea that the repeal of those orders could France, it would be gratuitously allowing to France depend upon any partial or conditional repeal of the the commerce of America and all the benefits de decrees of France. What she always avowed was rivable from her flag as an additional instrument for her readiness to rescind her orders in council as the annoyance of Great Britain, and that at a mo soon as France rescinded absolutely and uncondiment when every state is threatened with destructionally her decrees. She could not enter into any tion or really destroyed for merely supporting other engagement without the grossest injustice to their own right to trade with Great Britain. her allies as well as the neutral nations in general,

I am commanded, sir, to express on the part of much less could she do so if any special exception his royal highness the prince regent, that while was to be granted by France upon conditions uthis royal highness entertains the most sincere de-terly subversive of the most important and indisput sire to conciliate America, he yet can never conable maritime rights of the British empire. cede that the blockade of May 1806, could justly America has now a proceeding forced upon her be made the foundation, as it avowedly has been, for by France, on which, without surrendering any of the decrees of Bonaparte; and further, that the those principles which she may deem it necessary British government must ever consider the princi- for her own honor and security to maintain, she ples on which that blockade rested (accompanied may separate herself from the violence and injustice as it was, by an adequate blockaking force) to have of the enemy. She owes not only to herself to do been strictly consonan to the established law of na- so; but she is entitled to resent that course of contions, and a legitimate instance of the practice which it recognises.

duct on the part of France which is the only impe diment to her obtaining what she desires at the hands of Great Britain, namely, the repeal of the orders in council.

Secondly, that Great Britain must coutinue to reject the other spurious doctrines promulgated by France in the duke of Bassano's report, as binding I am authorised to renew to the American goupon all nations. She cannot admit as a true de vernment the assurance of his royal highness' anxiclaration of public law, that free ships make free ous desire to meet the wishes of America upon this goods, nor the enverse of that proposition, that ene point, whenever the conduct of the enemy will justi my's ships destroy the character of neutral property fy him in so doing, in the cargo-she cannot consent by the adoption of Whilst America could persuade herself, however such a principle to deliver absolutely the commerce erroneously, that the Berlin and Milan deerees had of France from the pressure of the naval power of been actually and totally repealed, and that the exeGreat Britain, and by the abuse of the neutral flag cution of the engagement made on that condition by to allow her enemy to obtain, without the expense the British government had been declined she might of sustaining a navy, for the trade and property of deem it justifiable as a consequence of such a persuaFrench subjects, a degree of freedom and security sion, to treat the interest and commerce of France which even the commerce of her own subjects can with preference and friendship, and those of Greas not find under the protection of the British navy. Britain with hostility; hut this delusion is at an end; She cannot admit as a principle of public law, America now finds the French deerees not only in that a maritime blockade can alone be legally ap fall force, but pointed with augmented hostility plied to fortresses actually invested by land as well against G. Britain. Will the government of the D. S. as by sea, which is the plain meaning or conse-declare that the measure now taken by France is that quence of the duke of Bassano's definition. repeal of the obnoxious decrees which America exShe cannot admit as a principle of public law that pected would lead to the repeal of the British orders ams and military stores are alone contraband of in council? Will the American government, unless war, and that ship timber and naval stores are ex-upon the principle of denying our retaliatory right cluded from that description. Nether can she ad of blockade, under any imaginable circumstances,

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