indultados por S. M. el pilato de la Georgiana, Mr. Graffan, y los demas individuos que se hallaban comprendidas en la misma causa aprehendidos en Contoy, á consecuencia de haber interpuesto su recomendacion en favor de estos desgraciados el respectable Secretario de Estado de los Estados Unidos, Mr. Daniel Webster.

La orden de indulto fué transmitida á la isla de Cuba el mismo dia 13; el 25 llegaron á Vigo el pilato Graffan y otros dos marinos condemnados por el tribunal de marino de la Habaña á los presidios de la peninsula, y el primero del corriente se comunicó la mismo orden de indulto a los autoridades de Vigo, para que se pusiese en libertad a los perados. De suerte que á estas horas es de creer hayan esperimentado ya los efectos de la clemencia de S. M y del deseo que anima á su Gobierno de ser agradable al de los Estados Unidos.

Lo que me apresaro á participar á V. S. aprovechando esta ocasion para réiterarla las seguridades de mi mas distinguida consideracion. B. L. M. de V. S. su atento y seguro servidor,



Mr. Barringer to Mr. Pidal.


Madrid, November 8, 1850. Sir: I have the honor to acknowledge the receipt of the note of your excellency, of the 6th instant, in answer to mine of the previous day, informing me that Mr. Graffan, the pilot of the Georgiana, and the remaining prisoners taken at Contoy, and embraced in the same cause, have been pardoned by her Catholic Majesty, and that an order has also been issued to the authorities at Vigo, where three of the said prisoners had arrived on the 25th ultimo, by which they may be placed in liberty.

I shall have great satisfaction in communicating to the government of the United States intelligence of the discharge of these prisoners, and am assured that my government will fully appreciate the desire which has animated that of her Catholic Majesty to be agreeable to the former.

It would have been a source of much gratification on my part to have had earlier information of the important fact contained in the note of your excellency, that I might have been enabled sooner to communicate the same to the government of the United States, and to take such other measures in regard to these prisoners as the nature of the case may have required. I take this occasion to renew, &c., &c., &c.


Minister of State.

Mr. Barringer to Mr. Webster..



· Madrid, November 21, 1858. Sir: I have the satisfaction to inform you that Rusus Benson, Joseph A. Graffan, and Thomas G. Hale, late captain and two mates of the ves. sels “Georgiana” and “ Susan Loud," the only remaining American prisoners taken at Contoy, were, on the 16th instant, placed as passengers on board of the British brig the “ Boundary,” Stephen Sylvester master, then at Cadiz, and bound for Philadelphia.

These persons, after being sentenced, as you have been heretofore ad. vised, left Havana, on board her Majesty's packet-ship “Correo No. 3," on the 10th September, and arrived at Vigo on the 16th ultimo, where they were in quarantine fifteen days. When they were released froin quarantine, the captain of the port of Vigo went on board, and, having read them the "indulto” or pardon from her Majesty, told them they were at liberty. The captain of the “Correo No. 3" gave them a passage to Cadiz, where they arrived on the 14th instant, and were received, in pursuance of previous instructions from me, by our consul at that port, who relieved their wants, and secured, at the expense of the United States, their passage to Philadelphia, as above mentioned, on board of the brig “Boundary,” which lefi Cadiz on the 16th instant.

I have deemed it my duty to apprize you of these facts, derived chiefly from my consular correspondence, with the view to enable you, if deemed desirable, to take any further proceedings, on their arrival in the United States, which the nature of their case may require from the govern. ment.

The Cadiz list of arrivals at that port on the 10th instant from Havana, Vigo, &c., states the entry of the Spanish transport of war “Georgiana,” Don Jose Gutz Lopez lieutenant commanding, with ship timber for the arsenal.

Having understood that among the prisoners on board the “Correo No. 3,” from Havana, there was an American named Wilcox, sentenced at Havana by the Spanish authorities, I called the attention of Mr. Bur. ton, our consul at Cadiz, to his case, and directed him to have an inter. view, if possible, with the prisoner, and inform me fully as to the facts of his imprisonment, detention, and sentence. You will learn from the enclosed copy of a note from the consul the history of this case, related hy Wilcox himself. I will merely add, that I have also heard that his trial at Havana was by the military,and not the "naval courts;'' that he was arrested by the authorities on board of the schooner which took him off the small island near Cardenas; that, on the arrival of this schooner at Havana, he was reported to the authorities by the captain, and that, on his trial, he resused to answer questions except in the presence of the American consul, whom he never saw.

I deem it my duty to present his case to your consideration, for such instructions as you may direct. I have seen no mention of the trial or sentence of Wilcox in the official publication of proceedings at Havana.

In the mean time, I will keep myself advised of the condition of the prisoner.

I have the honor to be, with the highest consideration, sir, your obedient servant,

D. M. BARRINGER. To DANIEL Webster, Esq.,

Secretary of State.

Mr. Burton, U. S. consul at Cadiz, to Mr. Barringer.


Cadiz, November 17, 1850. Sır: Having received from the governor of this province a note, as ser copy herewith, I this morning saw William Wilcox in the prison, in robust health and excellent spirits, free from shackle, which was taken off when he landed here from the ship “ Correo No. 3." His statement agrees in substance with what I have already written to you.

He says his age is 22—born in New York, which place he left when quite young, and removed with his father and family to Eastport, Maine, where he believes he has eight or nine brothers; that he shipped at New Orleans, about the 1st of May last, on board of the steamer · Creole," as fireman, at $20 per month, for Chagres. When at Contoy, finding the vessel was bound elsewhere, there was a disturbance on board, and an offer was made by some one in command to those who were dissatisfied to return to the United States. He, (Wilcox,) with others, went aft, and asked permission to go back, but they were refused, and told that none of the crew of the “ Creole” could be spared, as they were required for the service of said vessel. That, when entering the harbor of Cardenas at night, and before any person landed from the Crcole,he jumped overbourd, and swam to a small island close at hand, where he concealed himself from Saturday night to Monday afternoon, among the mangrove bushes, without water, and subsisting on shellfish-after whichi, observing a Spanish schooner beating out of the harbor, he got up a tree, and made a signal with his handkerchief. They sent a boat and took him on board, when he told them his story. On arrival at Havana, he was taken on shore and examined, and afterwards sent to the 74.gun ship, where he remained eight days, with a shackle on one ankle; was again taken on shore at Havana, without shackle, and confined in a room by himself for one month and a half, during which period he was examined three or four times, through an interpreter, before some Spanish officers, and then sent to the Moro Castle for fifteen days. That, five days before embarking in the mail packet-ship “No. 3,” his sentence was read to him, being "ten years of presidio at Ceuta,”' and the shackle was replaced, but taken off about nine days after leaving.Havana; and he continued to do duty with the crew of the ship "Correo No. 3,” and lived like them, until arrival at Vigo, where the shackle was again put on his ankle, and so continued till he landed at this port, but that it was not at any time of much inconvenience to him; and further, that he was well treated by the captain of the "Correo." I am, &c., &c.,


Minis er, 8c., &c., 8c., Madrid,

Mr. Barrinyer to Mr. Webster.


[No. 44.)


Madrid, December 12, Sır: By a note received from our consul at Cadiz, I learn that Wm. Wilcox, the prisoner referred to in my despatch No. 41, was, on the 28th ultimo, sent from the prison at Cadiz to Algeciras, on his way to Ceuta, in Africa, to complete the term of ten years of “presidio” to which he was sen. tenced at Havana.

I have the honor to be, with the highest respect, sir, your obedient serVant,


Secretary of State.

Mr. Webster to Mr. Barringer.

[No. 37.]


Washington, February 5, 1851. SIR: Shortly after the receipt of your despatch No. 39, of the 8th No. vember last, in which you say "that, if it be the purpose of our government to take any further step in reference to the case of the Contoy pris. oners, or that of the two vessels taken at the same time and condemned and sold by order of the Spanish courts, I will await your instructions on that subject," I had an interview with Mr. Loud, one of the owners of the “Susan Loud," on the subject of their claim against the Spanish government for indemnification for losses occasioned by the seizure of that vessel. I acquainted Mr. Loud with all that had been done, and with the instructions of this department; and I stated to him that the matter would have been followed up, and the claims originating in the capture of that vessel and of the “ Georgiana,” off Contoy, would have been reasserted and forcibly urged upon the Spanish government, if the department had been fully furnished by the parties interested with the necessary documents and evidence to explain the nature of their claims, and to substantiate the amount of indemnification due them for the losses incurred by the outrage. He was told it was desirable that all the claims connected with this business should be submitted together to the Spanish government, and was requested to transmit, as early as possible, to the

department, the required documents and evidence, and to desire his fellowsufferers, the owners of the “Georgiana,” to do the same with regard to their claim for losses and injury springing from the same cause. Indeed, I had hoped, ere this, to have been enabled to furnish for your use the necessary materials, with instructions to renew your application to her Catholie Majesty's government for the early acknowledgment of the equity of these claims—an act of sheer justice, which, however, cannot fail to promote the friendly relations of the two countries.

I feel that it is due to you, in closing this letter, to express my entire approbation of the manner in which these claims have been maintained by you in your correspondence with the Marquis de Pidal. Spain must be made to understand that the Executive of the United States will not submit to behold an injury done to persons or property under the flag of the Union, without holding to a strict responsibility the government by whose officers such an injury may have been inflicted. I am, sir, respectfully, your obedient servant,


f'c., foc., fc., Madrid.

S'Shout holding done co xecuti

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