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commerce, would also benefit hers, and thus nisters, but only permission for them to stay in BOOK XI. pave the way for that return of good will and Paris, where those insolent tyrants kept their confidence between the two nations, which should court.
Chap. I. add to the prosperity of both ; and when one was 2. “ The confidential friend and agent of Talfortunately made (that of 1794), France omitted leyrand in this business (whose information Tal 1811. no means to defeat it. And when foiled in this leyrand told Mr. Gerry was just, and might alattempt, and afterwards in the choice of a pre- ways he relied on), in addition to the douceur of sident (Mr. Adams, and not Mr. Jefferson, being 50,0001., earnestly pressed for a loan to the French elected), she let loose and gave greater scope to republic of many millions of dollars; to have her piratical cruisers, to fleece us of our property made which would have been a violation of our (as Joel Barlow said, and he was then in Paris) duty as a neutral nation: and urged various other to a sufficient degree to bring us to our feeling in unwarrantable and insolent demands of the the only nerve in which it was presumed our sen French government; enforcing them by threats sibility lay, which was our pecuniary interest.' of its vengeance on failure of their compliance. By bringing us to our feeling, Mr. Barlow Our envoys remaining firm and invincible, the meant inducing the submission of the government confidential agent said to them, Perhaps you of the United States to France, like many of the believe that in returning and exposing to your powers of Europe, whose cases he cited as ex countrymen the unreasonableness of the demands amples for us to follow. Fortunately the minds of this government, you will unite them in reof the great majority of the American people at sistance to those demands; you are mistaken: that time remained alive to national insults and you ought to know that the diplomatic skill of injuries. Resistance took place, instead of the France, and the means she possesses in your expected subinission.
country, are sufficient to enable her, with the aid * The French government was brought to its of the French party in America, to throw the senses, and abandoned its impudent pretensions blame which will atiend the rupture of the negoand claims. How this high and honorable ground ciations on the federalists, as you term yourselves, was lost to the United States may be the subject but on the British party, as France terms you; and of future observation. That season of dignity, you may assure yourselves this will be done.' spirit, and independence passed away; and that 3. “ The testimony of Fauchet, the minister of of submission followed, with all the evils we now
France to the United States, in his famous letter experience in its train.
of October 31, 1794, the time of the great in“ I have mentioned bribery as one of the means surrection in the western part of Pennsylvania, used by France to gain and establish an influence familiarly known by the name of the Whisky Inin the United States ; and I have done it on the surrection, referring to certain overtures which following grounds:
had been made to him by one of the exclusive 1. “ The notorious profligacy of the French patriots, (whom he named) and which he had government (to say nothing of what existed under before communicated to his government, Fauits former monarchy), evidenced by its uniforın chet says, · Thus, with some ihousands of dolconduct from an early period of the revolution. lars, the republic would have decided on civil war The official documents of our own government, or peace! . Thus the consciences of the pretended under the hands of our envoys, Pinckney, Mar- patriots of America have already their prices!' sball, and Gerry, attest that profligacy. Doubt 4. “ The notorious treachery of many officers, less there are some persons who, to gain an im- civil and military, of the countries which have portant point, would offer a bribe, who would dis been over-run by the arms of France, and whose dain to receive one. The government of France treason can be ascribed to no cause but the dishad no scruples of this sort
. The directory, by tribution of French gold, or the delusive protheir minister of corruption, Talleyrand, had the mises of elevation to higher employments and consummate baseness and impudence to demand dignities, as in the case of Godoy, the prince of of our envoys a douceur (in English, a bribe) peace, who betrayed Spain into the hands of Boof 50,0007. sterling, upward of 220,000 dol- naparte, or to both these causes. Accordingly, Jars, for the pockets of four of them: the fifth the opinion is general, that this sort of cordirector, Merlin, who had held the office of minis- ruption has been the efficient pioneer to the ter of justice, being paid by the owners of pri- French armies, and opened their way to convateers- (for being the minister of iniquity in di- quest. recting the decisions of the prize-courts, condemn 5. “ The open avowal of the fact by a French ing, American vessels and their cargoes.) And agent, at the time that Adet (the successor of this bribe they were informed was only the cus Fauchet) was the French minister in Philadeltomary tribute in diplomatic affairs ! And even phia. This agent was Mr. Letombe, the consulthis douceur was not to procure the acknowledg- general of the French republic; a person well
BOOK XI. to me. Letomhe had previously been French and the mines of Mexico and Peru have been
consul at Boston, had lived some years in the open to them. Eighteen months ago I received Chap. I. United States, and was doubtless much hetter satisfactory information, that the Frenchman wbo
informed concerning them than the minister was then Bonaparte's consul-general in Philadel1811.
Adet. Washirgton was then President of the phia, had, in the course of one year, received United States: and probably Letonbe perceived about 1,000,000 of dollars, for which the French that the time had not arrived for France, by her government could have no legitimate use in the intrigues and bribery, to give an effectual ascen United States; because it then neither derived dancy in the councils of our nation. Letombe nor needed any supplies from the United States, accordingly mentioned the fact in a tone of com “ The evidences of corruption, of falsehood, of plaint and vexation. It was to a very intelligent hypocrisy, and deceit, in the men whose official or and respectable gentleman of my acquaintance, personal means and influence have for many years to whom Letombe said, that Mr. Adet had given a direction to the public sentiment, and mafoolishly thrown away a great deal of money in naged the affairs of the United States, it has been bribing members of congress, although they necessary to exhibit to the view of my fellow-ci(Letombe and the minister) were put to much tizens; because the only hope of political salvadifficulty in raising it; and that they had, at a tion rested on the public conviction, that those great loss to the French republic, in the nego meu did not deserve the confidence of the pation. ciation, procured 80 or 90,000 dollars at Boston.'
This exposure was anticipated with regret; beI quote from my memorandum, made at the cause (as I early remarked) in exposing them I time the information was given to me. Mr. Adet's should unavoidably expose the nakedness of my mission to the United States terminated near the country; when, if compatible with truth, I would close of the year 1796. Since that time the infinitely rather speak tbe praises of both. More French government has found less difficulty in remains to be told. procuring money. The plunder of the world,
* July 29.
Hostile Determinations of America.—The intended War unpopular. American Bill for Impon
tation of Goods from Great Britain.-Bill for protecting British Seamen.- Pacific Disposition of the British Government.-Madison's Message to Congress.---Petitions against the Orders in Council.–Official Note on the said Orders.-Captain Henry's Mission to the United States.
The American government evinced a hostile such as to demand war, as the only alternative to disposition towards Great Britain in the earliest obtain justice. Their situation was like a young proceedings of congress. On the 6th of Decem man establishing himself in society, who, if he ber, when Mr. Porter called up the consideration submitted to indignities in the outset, would have of the report of the committee of foreign relations, to incur a double
of time and labour to he briefly stated “ The objects and views which establish his lost character.
establish his lost character. On the carrying had governed the committee in their
report, which trade, the committee expressed no final opinion. he had submitted to the House. The orders in It was in their power to harass the resources of council were of themselves a sufficient cause of Britain, as well on the ocean as by land; to carwar with the committee; and which causes were ry on a war against her coast and colonies at aggravated by the miserable shifts of the British their own doors; and destroy her trade with the ministry, and their authority in that country. colonies, by the number of privateers which Any man not wilfully blind, could see that Bri would be fitted out for service.' They had it in tain had not acted towards them even in a man their power to make a conquest of Canada, which, ner which accorded with her own ideas of jus- to Britain, was of the utmost importance; and tice; she captured under a principle this week, from whence she had imported articles of the utwbich she did not avow the next; and if a doc most necessity last year, to the amount of trine so monstrous were sanctioned, she would 600,000,000 dollars, a great deal of which was next trample upon the necks of their citizens in for square timber for her navy. They held a the streets. It was the unanimous opinion of a sword over her resources which would cut her the Committee, that these encroachments were to the quick. It was, therefore, the determing
tion of the committee to RECOMMEND open
noar to ers.” Mr. N. accordingly reported a bill, authoris- BOOK XI. the utmost energies of the nation ; yet he hoped it ing the inportation of certain goods, wares, and would not be entered into prematurely, for the merchandize, under certain circumstances, from CHAP. II. howlings of newspapers. He knew that many of Great Britain, ber colonies, and dependencies.bis friends were for immediate war; he felt the The bill was referred to a committee of the whole,
1812, indignities of their situation as sensibly as any of which the following is a copy : man in the house, and he would go as far to “ A bill to authorise the importation of goods, redress them, when the preliminaries were set wares, and merchandize, under certain circumtled; but he did not wish to invite to the feast stances, from Great Britain, her colonies, or detill the cloth was laid-till the nation was put into pendencies. the attitude, and a war demanded by the crisis." « Sect. 1. Be it enacted, by the senate and
The resolutions were all carried in a committee house of representatives of the United States of of the whole, except the second, in wbich the America, in congress assembled, that all goods, words ten thousand" were struck out, with a wares, and merchandize, being the growth, proview to insert a larger number, which there ap- duce, and manufacture of Great Britain, her copeared to be some difficulty in fixing on; the Jonies, or dependencies, which were purchased or lowest proposition was 12,000, and the highest actually contracted for in Great Britain, her conot exceeding 50,000; it was, however, agreed lonies, or dependencies, anterior to the Ist day of to let it remain, so that when the bill was re February, 1811, shall be, and the same is bereby ported, the house could fill as they saw proper; authorised to be, imported into the United States, more time would elapse, and they would be better or the territories thereof, and may be admitted to informed on the subject. (10,000 was an idea entry, provided the satisfactory proof be exhiquite out of order to mention; they were quitė bited conformable to such regulations and inup to the war mark.)
structions as shall, from time to time, be given by The resolutions were afterwards taken
io the secretary of the treasury to the respective colthe house, and the first carried by Ayes and lectors of the customs, that the goods, wares, and Noes, 117 to 11.
merchandize imported into the United States or The second resolution was then proposed by the territories thereof, by virtue of this act, were the speaker.-A plea for time was put in by purchased or actually contracted for anterior to Mr. Randolph and Mr. Goldsborough, who said, the 1st of February, 1811, and that such goods, “ if they were to be dragged into a war, it was but wares, or merchandize are the bona fide property reasonable to give them one night more to reflect of a citizen or citizens of the United States, or the on it." The house then adjourned till the 7th, territories thereof. at eleven, when it sat but a very little time, “ Sect. 2. And be it farther enacted, that the and adjourned on the motion of Mr. Randolph, as following addition be inserted after the passage of the committee of investigation wished to have this act, to the oath or affirmation taken by im. this day for the examination of persons agreeably porters, consignees, or agents, at the time of ento their powers: unless time was given, as the tering goods imported into the United States, or duty was arduous, it would be putting a veto on the territories thereof, viz :—I do also swear (or their proceedings.
affirm) that there are not, to the best of my knowThe house of representatives determined to re- ledge and belief, amongst the goods, wares, or. cognize formally the independence of South merchandize now offered to be entered, any goods, America.
wares, or merchandize other than such as are perThough the president's enmity against Great mitted by virtue of the provisions of this act to be Britain was supported by congress, the intended imported into the United States, or the territories war was far from being popular in the United thereof; and I do farther swear (or affirm) that if States: the clamour for it subsided rapidly; pe- I shall hereafter discover any such goods, wares, or titions were presented against it, and on the 7th merchandize, amongst the said goods, wares, and of January, 1812, Mr. Newton observed,“ that the merchandize imported in manner and form aforecommittee of commerce and manufactures had said, I will immediately, and without delay, rebeen for some time hesitating what report to port ihe same to the collector of this district make on the various petitions of merchants pray “ Sect. 3. And be it farther enacted, that the ing permission to import British goods purchased following additions shall be inserted after the paspreviously to the 2d of February last." The de sage of this act to the oath or affirmation taken lay of the committee had been owing to a wish to by the masters or persons having the charge or ascertain the course that congress would pursue :
command of any ship or vessel arriving at any and as the national legislature had determined to post within the United States, or the territories assume a manly attitude with regard to Great thereof, to wit:--I further swear (or affirm) that Britain, the committee, (he said,) had instructed there are not, to the best of my knowledge and kim to report a bill for the relief of the petition. belief, on-board (the denomination and name of
BOOK XI. the vessel) any goods, wares, or merchandize, but merable would be the blessings which would en
such as are authorised by the provisions of this sue to this country; but, if a war with America Char. 11. áct to be imported into ibe United States or the was resolved on, the greatest evils must be ex
territories thereof; and I do farther swear, (or pected. It was very well in us to talk of chas1812.
affirm) that if I shall hereafter discover or know tising America, of crushing and annihilating her; of any such goods, wares, or merchandize on but, in his opinion, our greatest efforts could not board said vessel, or which shall have been im- accomplish the one or the other. The news ported in the same, I will immediately and with which had lately arrived made it important that out delay make report thereof to the collector of the house should be in the possession of every inthe port of this district.'
formation. The effects of the bill now agitated " Sec. 4. And be it farther enacted, That if in congress would, if passed, give great umbrage any person or persons shall falsely make oath or to France, after what had occurred in the course affirmation to any of the matters herein required of their negociations ; he therefore thought that to be verified, such person or persons shall suffer we should watch for and seize this opportunity of the like pains and penalties as shall be incurred amicably adjusting the differences. He concluded by persons committing wilful and corrupt perjury.” by moving
Å bill of a most extraordinary nature was also “ That an humble address be presented to his brought forward in the house of représentatives in royal-highness the prince-regent, that he will be America, for the purpose, as it was termed, of pleased to direct, that there be laid before the protecting American seamen. It was read a first house copies of the correspondence between the and second time, and committed. The principal secretary of state for foreign affairs, and the Ameprovisions were, that if any foreigner should be rican charge d'affaires, from Jan. 1, 1810, to the guilty of impressing any American citizen on latest period; together with copies of the corresboard of a foreign ship or vessel, if he should be pondence between Mr. Foster and Mr. Monroe, arrested, he should be tried and convicted as a and of the documents referred to therein." pirate, and suffer death; and the American so im Mr. Stephen said, considering as he did the impressed, on his return to his country, should be portance of the question, he would content bimentitled to thirty dollars per month during the time self with saying, generally, that never was there of his detention, and might recover it by a suit of any thing more unfounded than the assertion, that foreign attachment, against the debtor of any Bri- the conduct of this country to America was unjust. tish creditor; and what he should recover, and the Nothing but a wish to conciliate, could justify his costs, should be so much payment of the debt. majesty's ministers in the persevering and almost
The proceedings of ihe imperial parliament bumiliating line of conduct which they had adoptfully demonstrated the pacific disposition of the ed, for the purpose of avoiding a rupture with British goverriment towards the United States. America. The question was not, whether we The subject was introduced by Mr. Whitbread, were to go to war with America, but whether Feb. 13, who said “ All parties profess that they America was to go to war with us? deprecate the idea of a war with America-all Mr. Curwen said, the state of the country called parties profess that such an event is but too pro- seriously on ministers to retrace their steps. Amehable. Those who conducted the affairs of Ame- rica had a right to dispose of her commerce ak rica and of this country had uniformly declared, she pleased, and no country should have the that each was actuated by the most conciliatory power to call that right in question. Whatever dispositions; it had, however, unfortunately turn- might be the pertinacity of the chancellor of the ed out, that, notwithstanding this most friendly exchequer on this head, he sincerely hoped that disposition on our side, the breach had widened he would not be long in a situation to retain it from day to day. It might be seen from the with any effect.-(At this time a change in minisspeech of the president, that war was the inevit-try was expected.) able consequence of the pernicious system which The chancellor of the exchequer would mainGreat Britaiu had adopted. The case was be tain that the language of the British government, fore the world, with the exception of the two with respect to conciliation, bad been always sinhouses of parliament of the British empire; every cere, while at the same time it was anxious not to one who read the papers knew the case, but the give up rights, which, if great Britain relinBritish parliament knew it not. The great ques- quished, would degrade her from the rank which tion which they had to decide was, whether they she held among the nations of the world. With should or should not go to war with America ? the remark that the prosperity of America was that and unlesss information was officially and tech- of Great Britain, he perfectly agreed. (Hear!) nically communicated to the house, which might A decided common advantage would be obtained be referred to as documents on the table, they by peace, and lost by a state of war, and, as far could not form any decision. If the markets of as was consistent with the rights of Great Brithe western world were open to our trade, innu- tain, should be preserved. It was impossible,
however, to consent to the production of the papers United States, notwithstanding the wrongs sus- BOOK XI. without seeing many points into which it might tained by them, cease not to observe the laws of
CRAP. II. be inexpedient to enter. An honorable gentle, peace and neutrality towards Great Britain, and man had expressed a hope that this negociation in the midst of amicable professions and nego
1812. might soon be in other bands ; but he was inclined ciations on the part of the British government to believe that the honorable gentleman's conso- there, and its public minister here, a secret agent latory views would not open upon him so soon as of that government was employed in certain be imagined; por 'if the conduct recommended states, more especially at the seat of government, by that honorable gentleman should be adopted Massachusetts, in fomenting dissaffection to the should he wish to be the minister who was to carry constituted authorities of the nation, and in init into execution.
trigue with the disaffected, for the purpose of Mr. Baring was apprehensive that, from the bringing about resistance to the laws, and evenfeelings of the country, a war could hardly be tually in concert with a British force destroying avoided. If discussions were actually, pending the union, and forming the eastern part thereof betwixt the two governments, the production of into a political connection with Great Britaip : in the papers might be inexpedient.
addition to the effect which the discovery of such Mr. Hutchinson said, if he were called on to a procedure ought to have on the public councils, give his vote on the differences between this coun it will not fail to render more dear to the hearts of try and America, he should give his vote for all good citizens that happy union of the states, America, and against bis own country. He had which, under Divine Providence, is the guarantee no confidence in ministers.---A laugh. )-He bad of our liberties, their safety, their tranquillity, and no confidence in the plunderers of America, and their prosperity. the authors of the accursed cry of “no popery.'
(Signed) JAMES MADISON, They did not merit the confidence of parliament, “ March 19, 1812." nor the confidence of the country,
Mr. Lester contended, that ministers carried This message was accompanied with several on affairs well, and were entitled to the gratitude documents upon wbich it was founded. They of the country.
contained the correspondence of the Earl of Li· The house divided for the motion, 36.- verpool and Sir James Craig, late governor of Against it, 123.-Majority against the notion, 87. Canada, with a certain Captain John Henry, who
Mr. Lockhart made a motion respecting the was the secret agent spoken of, and who had claims of the American loyalists, and went into himself made the disclosure to the government, some statements respecting their origin and na and given them the document, alleging, as the ture. They complained that they were injured reason, that the British government had refused by government taking a sum nearly one-third less to give him his reward. The documents were than what would provide a just compensation for transmitted by Mr. Henry to Mr. Monroe, the their losses, and the object of bis motion was, that American secretary, in a letter, dated Philadela committee should be appointed, to whom the phia, 20th of Feb. 1812, in which he said, that his petition of these claimants might be referred, who great object in making the disclosure, was to should examine into these claims, and report upon produce unanimity among all parties in America. them.
No. 2. contained the general instructions from The cbancellor of the exchequer said, that the Sir James Craig to Mr. Henry, dated on the 6th question would be found to resolve itself into this, of Feb. 1809, respecting his secret mission. The that government having done all it could to en- following was the most material part of them :force these claims without actually going to war “ It has been supposed, that if the federalists of about them, and having obtained from the Ame the eastern states should be successful in obtainrican government all it could obtain, whether it ing that decided influence which may enable was now bound to make good a deficiency to so them to direct the public opinion, it is not improgreat an amount as was claimed. He apprehend. bable, tbat rather than submit to a continuance of ed the petitioners had no right to expect compen
the difficulties and distress to which they are now sation from that house for what was due to them subject, they will exert that influence to bring from the American government.-Leave was about a separation from the general union. The given to appoint the committee.
earliest information on this subject may be of great On the 19th of March, the president, Mr. Ma consequence to our government, as it may also dison, sent the following message to both houses be, that it should be informed how far, in such an of congress, to the senate and house of represen event, they would look up to England for assisttatives.
ance, or be disposed to enter into a connection “ I lay before congress copies of certain docu
with us. ments which remain in the department of state; Although it would be highly inexpedient that