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United States, has the honour, by the direction of the President, to communicate to Mr Fox, Her Britannic Majesty's Envoy Extraordinary, and Minister Plenipotentiary, the result of the application of the General Government to the State of Maine on the subject of the North-eastern Boundary Line, and the resolution which the President has formed upon a careful consideration thereof. By the accompanying papers, received from the Executive of Maine, Mr. Fox will perceive that Maine declines to give a consent to the negociation for a conventional boundary; is disinclined to the reference of the points in dispute to a new arbitration; but is yet firmly persuaded that the line described in the Treaty of 1783 can be found and traced whenever the Governments of the United States and Great Britain shall proceed to make the requisite investigations, with a predisposition to effect that very desirable object. Confidently relying, as the President does, upon the assurances frequently repeated by the British Government of the earnest desire to reach that result, if it is practicable, he has instructed the undersigned to announce to Mr. Fox the willingness of this Government to enter into an arrangement with Great Britain for the establishment of a joint commission of survey and exploration upon the basis of the original proposition, and the modifications offered by Her Majesty's Government.
“ The Secretary of State is therefore authorized to invite Mr. Fox to a conference upon the subject
at as early a day as his convenience will permit; and the undersigned will be immediately furnished with a requisite full power, by the President, to conclude a convention embracing that object, if Her Majesty's Minister is duly empowered to proceed to the negociation of it on the part of Great Britain.
“ The undersigned avails himself of this occasion to renew to Mr. Fox the expression of his distinguished consideration.
" JOHN FORSYTH. Henry S. Fox, Esq. &c. &c.”
To this Note the following answer was transmitted by Mr. Fox :
“Washington May 1st, 1838. “SIR, I have the honour to acknowledge the receipt of
your official note of the 26th ultimo, in which you enclose to me a communication received by the Federal Government from the Executive of Maine, upon the subject of the North-eastern Boundary line; and in which you inform me that the President is willing to enter into an arrangement with Her Majesty's Government for the establishment of a joint commission of survey and exploration, upon the basis of the original American proposition, and of the modification offered by Her Majesty's Government, as communicated to you in my note of the 10th of January last ; and you invite me to a
conference, for the purpose of negociating a convention that shall embrace the above object, if I am duly empowered by my Government to proceed to such negociation.
“I have the honour to state to you, in reply, that my actual instructions were fulfilled by the delivery of the communication which I addressed to you on the 10th of January ; and that I am not at present provided with full powers for negociating the proposed convention. I will forthwith, however, transmit to Her Majesty's Government the note which I have had the honour to receive from you ; in order that such fresh instructions may be furnished to me, or such other steps taken, as the present situation of the question may appear to Her Majesty's Government to require. I avail myself of this occasion to renew to you the assurances of my high respect and consideration.
“ H. S. FOX. “ The Hon, John Forsyth, &c.”
This is the last act on the part of either Government relating to this matter, which has been rendered public.
Thus, after more than half a century from the period of the making of the Treaty of 1783, the greatest portion of which time has been occupied in unavailing negociations, the two nations are brought back to the point from which they originally set out. If the facts and reasonings contained in the foregoing paper be true, then the highlands described in the Treaty of 1783 ought to be sought for, and will be found, at the extremity of a line run due north from the source of the St. Croix—that is, from the head spring of its westernmost waters. A cause abundantly adequate to account for the impossibility of adapting the terms of the Treaty to any line proceeding from the head of the Cheputnaticook is found in the fact that the source of the Cheputnaticook is not the source of the St. Croix, and is distant from the source of the St. Croix fifteen or twenty miles in latitude, about forty miles in longitude, and is to the north-east of the source of the St. Croix and of the dividing ridge, and below that ridge. The compromise whereby the source of the Cheputnaticook was substituted in place of the source of the St. Croix, operated possibly a surrender of the territory to the southward of the meridian of latitude of the source of the Cheputnaticook, but had no further effect. And the boundary then will in point of fact be found to be from the mouth of the St. Croix to the point of confluence of the St. Croix and the Cheputnaticook, thence
up the Cheputnaticook to its most easternmost source, thence by the shortest and most direct line to the highlands which divide the rivers which empty themselves into the Atlantic Ocean from those which empty themselves into the River St. Lawrence, to the north-westernmost head of the Connecticut River. These conclusions, so far from being impaired, are corroborated by the statements made by the American Negociators in relation to the proposal of Mr. Livingston, and by the proposal itself, which statements on that account have been given with so much detail in the previous number
of this paper.
If the views which have been herein attempted to be developed be found to be correct, the subjects and citizens of the two countries may look forward to a speedy adjustment of this matter, and to an end being put to one of the few questions which