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After the consumption of so much time upon mere preliminary discussion, when we accepted the Articles, we thought it proper to ask for their Projet of a Treaty, offering immediately afterwards to deliver them ours in return. By their last Note, dated on the 21st and delivered to us on the 22d instant, they not only evade that request, but after having repeatedly disclaimed any views to the acquisition of Territory to Great Britain, they now propose to treat upon the Basis of uti-possidetis. And this proposition is made immediately after receiving the accounts of the capture of Washington, and of their having taken possession of all that part of the State of Massachusetts beyond Penobscot river. As we had already declared that we would subscribe no Article importing a cession of Territory they must have been aware that we should reject this Basis, and can have brought it forward for no other purpose than that of wasting time. In our answer to this Note which was sent yesterday, we have endevoured to bring them to a point, not only by explicitly rejecting the Basis of uti-possidetis, but by reminding them of its inconsistency with their own professions hitherto, and by stating to them that the utility of continuing the negotiation must depend upon their adherence to their principles avowed by those professions. We also renewed the request for an exchange of Projets, and as they intimated the idea that there might be an advantage in receiving instead of giving the first draft of a Treaty, we have offered to exchange the respective drafts at the same time.
It is now the general opinion that the Congress at Vienna will terminate in a settlement of the general affairs in Europe, if not to the satisfaction of all the great powers, at least without opposition from any of them. Such is the opinion that I have myself uniformly entertained. All the principal Governments, and all the great Nations except France, are most anxiously desirous of Peace, and as there is little else to arrange between them, besides a distribution of spoils, each one however eager to grasp at the most it can get, will finally content itself with what it can obtain. In France itself the warlike Spirit, appears to be gradually subsiding, and will in all probability yield itself to the continual and increasing influence and authority of the Government. There is therefore little prospect that any thing occurring in Europe will inspire the British Ministry with a pacific disposition towards America. They are in fact continuing to embark troops and to send reinforcements of all kinds for another campaign. It is not for me to judge what may be the effect of the Events now so rapidly succeeding one another in our own Hemisphere; but our Country cannot be too profoundly impressed with the Sentiment that it is, under God, upon her own native energies alone that she must rely for Peace, Union and Independence. I am with the highest Respect,
Sir, Your very humble and obed't Serv't.
The British to the American Plenipotentiaries.'
GHENT, October 31st, 1814.
The undersigned are authorized to state distinctly that the article as to the pacification and rights of the Indian nations having been accepted, they have brought forward in their note of the 21st instant all the propositions which they have to offer. *
The undersigned trust, therefore, that the American plenipotentiaries will no longer hesitate to bring forward in the form o articles, or otherwise, as they may prefer, those specific propositions upon which they are empowered to sign a treaty of peace between the two countries.
The point of the Duke of Wellington's quitting Paris being decided, I confess I feel most anxious, under all the circumstances, that he should accept the command in America. There is no other person we can send there really equal to the situation except Lord Niddry. Bathurst had a communication with him. He
American State Papers, Foreign Relations, Vol. III, p. 726. 2Yonge's “Life and Administration of Robert Banks, Second Earl of Liverpool," Vol. II, p. 59.
Formerly Sir J. Hope. (Appearing in original text.]
would be willing to go if his health and wounds would permit, but his surgeons give no hopes of his being able to undertake the service for some months, and they doubt if they would suffer him to go even then.
The Duke of Wellington would restore confidence to the army, place the military operations upon a proper footing, and give us the best chance of peace. I know he is very anxious for the restoration of peace with America, if it can be made on terms at all honorable. It is a material consideration likewise, that if we shall be disposed, for the sake of peace, to give up something of our just pretensions, we can do this more creditably through him than through any other person.
I wish very much we could have had a communication with you before we came to this decision, but from the nature of the case delay was impossible. It was quite essential to remove him from Paris, and it was not less so to decide on the ground on which that removal was to take place. Besides, if we are to have the advantages of his services in America, the sooner it is known and the sooner he can go the better. This appointment will in itself be sufficient to obviate many difficulties and much embarrassment at home.
The American to the British Plenipotentiaries'.
GHENT, November 10th, 1814. The undersigned have the honor to acknowledge the receipt of the note addressed to them by His Britannic Majesty's Plenipotentiaries on the 31st ultimo. The undersigned have the honor to enclose herewith a projet of a treaty, accompanied with some observations upon several of the articles, which may more fully elucidate their objects in proposing them.
The article already agreed on respecting the Indian pacification is included in the projet of the undersigned. In conformity with their former suggestions, they offer another, intended to restrain the hostilities, and to prevent the employment of the savages in war, and one reciprocally granting a general amnesty.
1 American State Papers, Foreign Relations, Vol. III, p. 733.
EXHIBIT 148. Projet of a treaty submitted by the American plenipotentiaries on
the roth day of November, 1814, and the alterations and propositions made by the British plenipotentiaries in the margin thereof.
Article 9. The United States of America engage to put an end immediately after the ratification of the present treaty to hostilities with all the tribes or nations of Indians with whom they may be at war at the time of such ratification, and forthwith to restore to such tribes or nations respectively all the possessions, rights and privileges, which they may have enjoyed or been entitled to in 1811 previous to such hostilities.
Provided, always, That such tribes or nations shall agree to desist from all hostilities against the United States of America, their citizens and subjects, upon the ratification of the present treaty being notified to such tribes or nations, and shall so desist accordingly.
And His Britannic Majesty engages on his part to put an end immediately after the ratification of the present treaty to hostilities with all the tribes or nations of Indians with whom he may be at war at the time of such ratification, and forthwith to restore to such tribes or nations respectively all the possessions, rights, and privileges, which they may have enjoyed or been entitled to in 1811, previous to such hostilities.
Provided, always, That such tribes or nations shall agree to desist from all hostilities against His Britannic Majesty and his subjects upon the ratification of the present treaty being notified to such tribes or nations, and shall so desist accordingly.
1 American State Papers, Foreign Relations, Vol. III, p. 735.
(The word "approved," written by the British plenipotentiaries, opposite this article.)
Article 10. His Britannic Majesty and the United States shall, by all the means in their power, restrain the Indians living within their respective dominions from committing hostilities against the territory, citizens, or subjects of the other party. And both Powers also agree, and mutually pledge themselves, if at any time war should unhappily break out between them, not to employ any Indians nor to admit of their aid and co-operation in the prosecution of the war against the other party.
(The word “inadmissible” was written by the British plenipotentiaries opposite this article.)
Article 14. It is also agreed that no person or persons residing within the dominions of one of the parties who may have taken part with the other party in the war between Great Britain and the United States, shall, on that account, be prosecuted, molested, or annoyed, either in his person or property, and that all such persons disposed to remove into the dominions of the other party, shall be allowed the term ofmonths freely to sell their property of every nature and description whatever, and to remove accordingly.
(The word “inadmissible” was written by the British plenipotentiaries opposite this article.)
The command in America would give general satisfaction here, and would appear at Paris sufficient to account for your not returning. It would not be necessary that you should leave this
Yonge's “Life and Administration of Robert Banks, Second Earl of Liverpool,” Vol. II, p. 60.