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a part of the National Debt, without the least infringement of Parliamentary faith.
It is most gratifying to Me that you should have been enabled, in consequence of this and of other Measures, to relieve my People from some of their burthens.
My Lords and Gentlemen,
The distress which has for some months past pervaded a considerable portion of Ireland, arising principally from the failure of that crop on which the great body of the Population depends for their subsistence, has deeply affected me.
The Measures which you have adopted for the relief of the Sufferers meet with My warmest approbation, and seconded as they have been by the spontaneous and generous efforts of My People, they have most materially contributed to alleviate the pressure of this severe calamity.
I have the satisfaction of knowing, that these exertions have been justly appreciated in Ireland; and I entertain a sincere belief that the benevolence and sympathy so conspicuously manifested upon the present occasion, will essentially promote the object which I have ever had at heart, that of cementing the connection which subsists between every part of the Empire, and of uniting in brotherly love and affection all classes and descriptions of My Subjects.
MESSAGE from the President of The United States, transmitting the information required by a Resolution of the House of Representatives of the 16th of February last, in relation to Claims set up by Foreign Governments to Territory of The United States upon the Pacifick Ocean, North of the 42d degree of Latitude, &c. &c.—15th April,
To the House of Representatives of The United States.
IN compliance with a Resolution of the House of Representatives of the 16th of February last, requesting the President of The United States "to communicate to that House, whether any Foreign Government has made Claim to any part of the Territory of The United States upon the Coast of the Pacifick Ocean, North of the 42d degree of Latitude, and to what extent; whether any Regulations have been made by Foreign Powers affecting the Trade on that Coast, and how far it affects the interests of this Republick; and whether any Communications have been made to this Government, by Foreign Powers, touching the contemplated occupation of Columbia River," I now transmit a Report
from the Secretary of State, containing the information embraced by that Resolution.
Washington, 15th April, 1822.
Report of the Secretary of State.
Department of State, Washington, 13th April, 1822.
THE Secretary of State, to whom has been referred the Resolution of the House of Representatives, of the 16th of February last, requesting the President of The United States "to communicate to that House, whether any Foreign Government has made Claim to any part of the Territory of The United States upon the Coast of the Pacifick Ocean, north of the 42d degree of Latitude, and to what extent; whether any Regulations have been made, by Foreign Powers, affecting the Trade on that Coast, and how far it affects the interests of this Republick; and whether any Communications have been made to this Government, by Foreign Powers, touching the contemplated occupation of the Columbia River," has the honour of submitting to the President sundry Papers, containing the information embraced by the Resolution.
At the time when the subject of the proposed occupation of the Columbia River was presented to the consideration of Congress, at their last Session, the Minister of Great Britain, at two several interviews with the Secretary of State, suggested that Great Britain had Claims on the North-west Coast of America, with which he conceived that such occupation on the part of The United States would conflict; and requested to be informed what were the intentions of the Government of The United States in this respect. The Secretary of State declined answering those inquiries, or discussing those Claims, otherwise than in writing. But no written Communication upon the subject has been received.
The President of The United States. JOHN QUINCY ADAMS.
.Fort George... 6th Oct. 1818.. 469
E. Note and Authorities relative to Columbia River.....
8. The Chevalier de Poletica to Mr. Adams...Washington....11th Feb. 1822.. 471 9. Edict of His Imperial Majesty, relative to
Trade on the Eastern Coast of Siberia, the
North-west Coast of America, and the
Aleutian, Kurile, and other Islands..... Kamenoy Ostroff 16th Sept.1821.. 472 10. Mr. Adams to the Chevalier de Poletica... Washington.... 25th Feb. 1822.. 482 11. The Chevalier de Poletica to Mr. Adams..Washington....28th Feb.1822.. 483 12. Mr. Adams to the Chevalier de Poletica..Washington....30th Mar. 1822.. 488 13. The Chevalier de Poletica to Mr. Adams. Washington.... 2d April, 1822.. 489
(1.)-Mr. Monroe to Mr. Baker.
Department of State, 18th July 1815. IT is represented that an Expedition which had been sent by your Government, against a Post of The United States established on Columbia River, had succeeded in taking possession of it. By the 1st Article of the Treaty of Peace it is stipulated, that all Territory, Places, and Possessions, whatsoever, taken by either Party from the other during the War, shall be restored without delay, with the exception only of the Islands in Passamaquoddy Bay, which should remain in the possession of the Party in whose occupation they then were, subject to the decision provided for in the 4th Article. As the Post on Columbia River was taken during the War, and is not within the exception stipulated, The United States are, of course, entitled to its restitution; measures, therefore, will be taken to reoccupy it without delay. It is probable that your Government may have given Orders for its restitution; to prevent, however, any difficulty on the subject, I have to request that you will have the goodness to furnish me with a Letter to the British Commander there to that effect.
I have the honour to be, &c.
Anthony St. John Baker, Esq.
Chargé d'Affaires from Great Britain.
(2.)—Mr. Baker to the Secretary of State.
I HAVE had the honour to receive your Letter of the 18th instant, acquainting me that it had been represented to the American Government, that a British Force, sent for that purpose, had succeeded in taking possession of The United States Establishment on Columbia River, and claiming its restoration under the words of the 1st Article of the Treaty, upon the ground of its having been captured during the War; stating, likewise, that His Majesty's Government may have given orders for its restitution, but requesting, with a view to prevent any difficulty on the subject, that I would furnish a Letter to that effect to the British Commander there.
As I have received no Communication from His Majesty's Government on the subject of these Orders, you will readily, I am convinced,
perceive the impracticability of my furnishing a Letter of this nature; and, although it is believed that the Post in question has been captured, of which, however, the American Government does not appear to have any certain information, on which to ground the claim of restitution, yet another point, equally essential, remains in great uncertainty, viz: whether any Persons whatsoever were left to retain possession of it. My impression is, that the Establishment was broken up, and the Persons found there brought away. Vice-Admiral Dixon, however, the Commander-in-Chief of His Majesty's Naval Forces on the Brazil Station, within whose command the Pacifick Ocean is included, is no doubt in possession of every necessary information in relation to this Post, and will be able to communicate on the subject with any authorized Agent on the part of The United States.
Having observed, that you have stated, in two Letters which I have lately had the honour of receiving from you, that I had been particularly charged with the execution of the Treaty of Peace, I avail myself of this opportunity of noticing the circumstance, simply with a view of preventing any possible misapprehension, which might be produced by it. You will perceive, on a reference to the two Credentials, empowering me to exchange the Ratifications, and to act as His Majesty's Chargé d'Affaires, that no such particular authority was vested in me, although the general powers of the above Character would undoubtedly enable me to promote, and, in some respects, accomplish this object. I have the honour to be, &c.
The Hon. James Monroe.
ANTHONY ST. JNO. BAKER.
(3.)-Mr. Bagot to the Secretary of State. Washington, 26th November, 1817. FROM the conversation which you did me the honour to hold with me 2 days ago, upon the occasion of the inquiry which I thought it my duty to make, relative to the reported destination of The United States' Sloop of War Ontario, I am, I presume, warranted in inferring, that the information, which I had previously received upon that subject, is essentially correct, and that one of the objects of the Voyage of the Ontario is to establish a Settlement in the neighbourhood of the Columbia River, on the North-west Coast of America.
It will be remembered, that, some months after the exchange of the Ratifications of the Treaty of Peace, an application was made to Mr. Baker, then His Majesty's Chargé d'Affaires in this Country, claiming the restitution of a Post, which had been held by The United States upon the Columbia River, and which was alleged to have been captured during the War; and Mr. Baker was requested to take steps for the purpose of facilitating its restoration.
Mr. Baker having, in his reply, pointed out the insufficiency of the evidence, on which the Claim of Restitution appeared to be founded, and having represented his want of authentic information and Instruc
tions upon the subject, referred the Secretary of State to the British Admiral, within whose command he conceived the Pacifick Ocean to be included.
In consequence of this Correspondence, an application was soon afterwards made by Mr. Baker, to the Governor-General of Canada, in the expectation that he perhaps might be enabled to furnish some information upon the subject, in the event of the question being again brought into discussion.
From the Reports then made by him, it appeared that the Post in question had not been captured during the late War, but that the Americans had retired from it, under an agreement made with the Northwest Company, who had purchased their effects, and who had, ever since, retained peaceable possession of the Coast.
As it thus appears that no Claim for the Restitution of this Post can be grounded upon the 1st Article of the Treaty of Ghent, and as the Territory itself was early taken possession of in His Majesty's name, and has been since considered as forming a part of His Majesty's Dominions, I have to request, that you will do me the honour to furnish me with such explanation, as you may judge proper, of the object of the voyage of the Ontario, so far as it may relate to Establishments upon the Territory to which I refer, in order that I may be enabled to represent to His Majesty's Government, in its just point of view, a measure, in which His Majesty's rights and interests appear to be so materially involved. I have, &c.
The Hon. J. Q. Adams.
(4.)-Mr. Rush to the Secretary of State.
I AM now to have the honour of stating all that passed in the Conversation with Lord Castlereagh, on the first of this month.
His Lorship introduced, in the last place, assuaging, as much as possible, by his manner, the essential character of his remarks, the affair of the Establishment at the mouth of the River Columbia. A Dispatch from Mr. Bagot, he observed, had acquainted the Government here with the steps lately taken by the Government of The United States, to repossess itself of that Post; and he had to express to me the regret which had been felt at the measure. It was to have been wished, he intimated, that, before the Ontario sailed, notice had been given to the British Minister at Washington of the intention to dispatch her, with a communication of the objects of her destination, Great Britain having a claim of dominion over the Territory in question. He went on to inform me that Mr. Bagot had sent in a remonstrance upon the occasion, to which, at the last dates, an Answer had not been returned. His Lordship closed by saying, that it was the desire of this Government to submit to the Government of The United States a pro