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Sul de 27/12 0311
The Undersigned ought to confine himself to the preceding answer to the above mentioned Note of the Secretary of State, but he hastened tulinform his Government, whose instructions upon the subject he has demanded.✔
Hesprays Mr. Clay to accept, &c. 21
The Hon. H. Clay,
basserth $ 96 PA
THE CHEVALIER HUYGENS.
mod waita (3.)—Mr. Clay to the Chevalier Huygens.
SIR 1 Department of State, Washington, 24th Dec. 1825. I HAVE the honour to acknowledge the receipt of your Note of the 12th instant, which has been laid before the President. Some surprise is felt that you have no Instructions on the subject of the inequality of duties, against which Mr. Everett remonstrated both to Mr. Reinhold and his Predecessor. Considering the nature of that inequality, and the time which has elapsed since its injustice was clearly demonstrated by Mr. Everett, to the Government of His Majesty the King of The Netherlands, it was expected that you would have been fully authorized to give the requisite assurances of its being done away. Since you have no such authority, and have referred home for Instructions, the President, willing to give a new proof of his desire to cultivate the most amicable relations with the Government of The Netherlands, will refrain, until he receive an answer, from exercising the power with my former which he is invested by the Act of Congress referred to in Note. That Act leaving him no alternative, in the event of the persistance of your Government in maintaining the inequality alluded to, it is expected, after all that has occurred, that you will lose no time in obtaining, and communicating to this Department, information whether it be intended so to persist or not.
The Chevalier Huygens.
I pray you to accept, &c.
(4.) The Chevalier Huygens to the Secretary of State. Da Washington, 27th December, 1825. (Translation.) THE Undersigned, Envoy Extraordinary and Minister Plenipotentiary of His Majesty the King of The Netherlands, has the honour to acknowledge the receipt of the Note which Mr. Clay, Secretary of ommunicate State, addressed to him, on the 24th of this month, to to him the friendly intentions of the President, with regard to the expectation of an answer or decision of his Government, on the representations made by Mr. Everett, respecting an inequality of the duties" of tonnage borne by American ships, in comparison of those borne by Vessels of The Netherlands. The Undersigned returns his thanks for this communication, and for the desire which it expresses, of cultivating the most friendly relations with the Government of The Netherlands, and will hasten to transmit it, as he has not failed to do, with the pre
ceding Note of the Secretary of State, of the 10th of this month, upon the same subject; and sure of the reciprocal sentiments entertained by His Majesty the King of The Netherlands, for The United States, the Undersigned flatters himself that he will receive, with the least possible delay, the Instructions required.
The Hon. H. Clay.
C. D. E. J. BANGEMAN HUYGENS.
(5.)-Mr. Clay to Mr. Hughes.
Department of State, Washington, 27th April, 1826.
I HAVE received no assurance from Mr. Huygens that the inequality in the Ports of The Netherlands, between American and Dutch Vessels, which forms the topic of my Letter to him, under date of the 10th of December last, has been removed. You will again bring that subject before the Government of The Netherlands, and express the just expectation of the President, that it should be, forthwith, done away, if it yet continues in operation. Mr. Hughes, Chargé d'Affaires U. S.
(6.)-The Chevalier Huygens to the Secretary of State.-(Translation.) Sir, Washington, 15th September, 1826.
FURNISHED With Instructions relative to the demands which you did me the honour to address to me, on the 10th and 24th of December, 1825, in regard to an article in the Tariff of The Netherlands, of the 22d August, 1822, which grants a restitution of 10 per cent. on the duties of merchandise imported and exported under the National Flag, I am now authorized to explain to the Government of The United States, the system which governed that of The Netherlands in this matter.
When, in 1817, negotiations were commenced between the two Governments, to relieve the languishing and interrupted commerce between the two Nations, and to favour their relations, it was intended to obtain, by mutual concessions, reciprocal advantages. At this period, the Flag of The United States already enjoyed in The Netherlands all the advantages which flowed from the liberal system which was then predominant. This system preceded what The United States wished to obtain; for, by the legislation of The Netherlands, the Americans were permitted to import and export any productions, without exception of origin, upon paying the same duties as National Vessels, with the exception of only a few articles. The Americans were, besides, permitted to navigate to the Colonies of The Netherlands.
The Government of The Netherlands does not think new concessions necessary, to strengthen the existing grievances against the discriminating duties which press upon its commerce in America. It is also authorized to think, that the Report of the American Commissioners, upon the fruitless issue of the above-mentioned Conferences,
directed Congress in its deliberations, on the passage of the Act of 20th April, 1818.
This Act was considered in The Netherlands as a commencement of a system of reciprocity; and they flattered themselves, it is true, that the advantages granted by this Act to the National Flag, over the Flags of other Nations, would have a salutary effect upon the Navigation, and produced the hope that it would pave the way to the establishment of the ancient commercial relations between the two Countries.
But experience has proved, that the direct relations continue languishing, and that the American flag alone possessed the advantages which the liberal system in The Netherlands presented to it. It was observed that, during six years, no amelioration took place in the direct navigation of The Netherlands in The United States, and that, during this time, the Flag of The Netherlands had scarcely participated in it.
From Rotterdam, where, formerly, the commerce with America had been very active, not a single Vessel under the National Flag had been despatched; from Amsterdam and Antwerp, the number was confined to a few. On the contrary, these Ports had been visited by a number of American Ships.
These, therefore, have alone derived the advantages of the equality of duties, whilst the Ships of The Netherlands have obtained, if I may so speak, no benefit from the Act of 20th April, 1818; and if this Act was not sufficient to encourage new speculations, and to excite emulation in the Flag of The Netherlands, it ought to be still less expected from that of the 7th January, 1824. This Act, instead of fulfilling the concession which might, in justice, be expected, diminishes the advantages stipulated by the former. This general measure, granting to almost all the commercial Nations of Europe, rights which had been granted, lately, to The Netherlands alone, by generalizing them, dispelled the illusion, if I may so speak, of the advantages which the Act of the 20th April, 1818, had produced.
In this state of affairs, the Government of The Netherlands did not expect a renewal of the representations against the 10th Article of the Law of 26th August, 1822. It flattered itself that the Government of The United States had admitted the explanation, " that, by the Tariff of The Netherlands, the duties of entry and clearance are, in general, the same for all Foreign, and the National, Flags, and that the reimbursement of the 10 per cent. only aimed at the encouragement of maritime building, and can only be considered as a premium, or gratification."
In effect, this 10 per cent. is not a diminution of the duties of navigation, properly speaking, because it is not calculated by the capaciousness of the Ships, but is granted upon the duties of entry for merchandize loaded on National Ships, and is, consequently, entirely
conformable with the duties of the Tariff; the amount of reimburse ment depending upon the nature of the objects of which the cargo is composed; so that it may be more considerable for a small Vessel than for a large Ship, according as the merchandize loaded thereon is liable to pay more or less duties. It is not, then, in reality, from the duty of tonnage, on which, in the first instance, the reciprocity is applicable, that the representations of The United States can draw the question. Upon consideration, the Government of The Netherlands cannot help thinking, that they have demonstrated, that the representations of the Chargé d'Affaires of The United States, in 1823 and 1824, were not based upon a system of reciprocity; and it is probable that, if Mr. Everett had not gone away during the deliberations on a new Report, which was about to be made upon this matter, he would have understood that there were no reasons for granting the reimbursement of 10 per cent. of the duties of entry and clearance to American Ships, which he claimed.
These were the circumstances, Sir, when the Notes, which you did me the honour to address me on the 10th and 24th December last, arrived in Holland, and they caused the matter to be taken into consideration anew.
In order to understand, with certainty, if the state of the navigation between the Kingdom and The United States, could actually admit of a more favourable reception of the above-mentioned representations than in 1823 and 1824, the state of the Ships and their cargoes, which sailed between The Netherlands and The United States in the 3 last years, was taken.
It is evident, from this Table, that there were entered, in the Ports of The Netherlands, under the American Flag,
This disproportion, in the number of American and National Ships engaged in the commerce between the two Countries, is too striking
not to recognize in it the inequality of advantages which exist in the reciprocal relations, and ought to convince the Government of The Netherlands that the legislative provisions of The United States in favour of its Flag, had produced no benefit to it.
The cause of this difference in the navigation of the two Nations, ought to be principally attributed to the tendency of the Tariffs of duties in the two Countries, by which, although the Ships of The Netherlands, and their cargoes, are treated in the American Ports on the same footing as the National Vessels, they are still in a worse condition than the American Ships, and their cargoes, in the Ports of The Netherlands, even if they were considered only as Foreign Vessels.
And how could the Ships of The Netherlands transport their merchandize to The United States, when they find there the principal productions of the Kingdom, as, for example, geneva, sail cloth, cheese, and many other articles, charged so high, as to pay, calculated from the original price, from 50 to 100 per cent. of the value. These articles, justly including a part of the provisions and necessaries of the Crews, with which it may be useful, sometimes, for the Captains to part with, or which they are often obliged to sell, the impost upon them presses essentially upon the navigation, as, also, the dues of pilotage, upon the footing of Foreign Ships, as they have been demanded and paid, even recently, at Norfolk, by the Brig Mary, Captain James Almeida. But another disadvantage to the Ships of The Netherlands, in the Ports of The United States, is found in the facility of desertion, and the power which the Tribunals claim in the differences between the Crews, without admitting the claims of the Consuls on this subject, or acknowledging their right of decision. In fine, in the limitation of the cargoes which the Ships of The Netherlands are permitted to bring to America, to duties equal with the Americans.
It is easy to conclude, from hence, on one side, that the reciprocity of duties of navigation for the Ships of The Netherlands, to an equality with those of The United States in American Ports, is of little or no utility to the former, because the Merchants of the Kingdom can find no profit to charge upon the merchandize entering into their commerce, and more especially the products of the National industry, on account of the excessive duties imposed upon them; and that the Owners or Captains cannot be tempted to offer facilities in the freight. On the other hand, it is evident that, in consequence of the liberal stipulations of the Tariff of The Netherlands, especially in regard to the products of The United States, and the equality of the duties of tonnage, the American Ships may bring, continually, their merchandize, with advantage to The Netherlands, although some articles, as coffee, sugar, &c. are subjected to a heavier duty than National Vessels pay, and although they do not receive a restitution of 10 per cent. To this it