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ly failed, and the treaty is therefore of no force. In the work of M. Du Pradt,” published this year at l'aris, we have a different history of the transaction, and at the same time, one little to the credit of either France or Spain. The transfer of Louisiana so far from being the chief object of the treaty, was but an appendage to a scheme of injustice, to be practised towards the princes of Parma, and the crown of Portugal. When I say an appendage, l do not mean that it was not regarded as a matter of importance, on the part of Spain at least, but that it had other ends to answer. The French directory had desired the destruction of the princes of Parma, whose vicinity was incompatible with the occupation of Turin. The care of the Spanish cabinet, during the administration of Urguijo, had shielded them from the impending danger. But on the accession of Bonaparte to the first consulate, the Spanish minister conceived it good policy to meet his views, by putting Parma in his power, in order that Austria might be weakened in Italy. The exchange for Etruria was therefore proposed, and agreed to by the treaty of Ildephonso. This exchange, had a still more tempting object. The princes of Parma were in the annual receipt of a pension from France and Spain, which since the revolution, had fallen upon the latter alone. In this arrangement, there was consequently, at once an augmentation of dignity to Spain, and a relief to her finances. From these facts it would appear, that the stipulation to cede Louisiana, was
* Memoires Historiques sur la revolution d'Espagne, (1816.)
not the sole object of this transaction, which redounds so little to the honour of the parties concerned. Further: Etruria was actually obtained, and the acquisition of Louisiana by France thus completed. Spain received the stipulated equivalent. But the king of Etruria, by the celebrated treaty of Fontainbleau, of 27th October, 1807, bartered away to France again, this equivalent—his kingdom, for another to be carved by France and Spain out of the kingdom of Portugal, in violation of every principle of justice and good faith. The king of Etruria foolishly relinquished the substance for the shadow, and was content to exchange his title for that of king of Northern Lusitania. The princes of Parma were to be defrauded, and the king of Portugal to be robbed; the disappointments which followed this iniquitous combination, ought surely never to be brought before the world as a subject of complaint. It requires no great sagacity to discover, that the whole consideration for the transfer of Louisiana, was not expressed in the treaty of Ildephonso. This may be inferred from the fact, that Louisiana had before been offered to the Directory without any comfiensation. The object as we have already hinted, of Spain, was to protect her Mexican possessions, by interposing a power sufficiently strong to arrest the progress of the American settlements to the westward. The various efforts of Spain to withdraw the western states from the union had failed; she was aware that a serious conflict with the United States, could not be long retarded, and should it take place, that the progress of the American arms would not be checked by the Mississippi. By the treaty, ten ships of the line were placed at the dis. posal of France; an army of twenty-five thousand men had been actually embarked in one of the ports of Holland, which, fortunately for the United States, at the moment when all was ready for sailing, was blockaded by a British fleet. Where was the necessity of so great a force to take possession of a feeble colony. The object was to close the navigation of the river to the Americans, by fortifying
some of its heights, and to break up the American confederation. Frustrated in this design, and standing in need of money, France made a bargain with the United States. It is here that we are to look for the disappointment, and mortification of Spain. The very lineans she had taken to keep us at a distance, eventuated in bringing us into contact with her, a catastrophe which she cannot for give, but which, whatever may be her efforts, she cannot remedy.
ELOQUENCE OF THE SENATE.
Sheech of Sir JAMEs MackINTosh on the Treaty of Peace with -America, delivered in the British House of Commons, Afril 11th, 1815. Sir James Mackintosh said, that he rose after his hon. relation, partly to express the pride as well as pleasure with which he had listened to his arguments, though he was obliged to controvert their justice. He would begin by avowing, however unfashionable such principles had now become, his partiality to America, because she was not only bound to us by the ties of common origin, but by the closer fellowship of civil and religious liberty. The spirit of liberty had given us an American empire: the spirit of domination had robbed us it. Peace with America he considered as one of the greatest of national advantages; for of all separate objects of our foreign policy, he thought friendship with America was the second. The strength and security of Holland he allowed to be the first. He had at all times equally lamented and reprobated those vulgar prejudices, and that insolent language against the people of America, which had been of late so prevalent in this country, and which had reached so extravagant a height, that men, respectable in character as well as station, had spoken in this House of the deposition of Mr. Madison as a justifiable object of war, and had treated a gentleman of English extraction and education with a scurrility which they must now be the first to regret, for no better reason than that we happened to be at war
with the great republic over which he presides. He did not, therefore, object so much to the treaty as to the address. He objected to it because the treaty was not concluded sooner, because the delay was unfavourable to its conditions, and, above all, because the negotiations were not conducted in the spirit most likely to render the peace permanent. The question before the house was twofold:— Whether any unnecessary delay had occurred in the negotiation; and whether that delay was culpably imputable to his majesty's ministers? He should venture to assume, that the negotiation would have been better conducted if it had been commenced in April or May, and closed in July, than as it was from August to December. Every thing during the first period was favourable to Great-Britain. That government in France, which America might consider as the check on British power, had just been overthrown. The allies were closely united; they were in possession of the French territory. The renown of their success subdued and overawed the minds of of all men. It was the moment for England to prove her sincerity in disclaiming views of American aggrandizement. The cause of war was removed. Peace was in substance, if not in form, made with France. No maritime war existed. All questions respecting the right of impressment, or any other right of a maritime belligerent, were become matters of pure speculation. The subject in dispute was vanished. Cadit questio. “Shall we continue at war for a theoretical principle of public law?” was the language openly held by the Amelican negotiators on their arrival in London in April. To go still further back, he could not discover why ministers had rejected the mediation of Russia. A mediator is a common friend, who counsels both parties with a weight proportioned to their belief in his integrity, and their respect for his power. But he is not an arbitrator to whose decision they submit their differences, and whose award is binding on them. Russia, at the moment of the proposal, was the most hearty ally of England. No two states were ever joined by stronger bands of common interest. Russia had, by the convention of 1801, renounced the principles of the armed neutrality. She had, indeed, renewed them when she fell under the influence of Napoleon. But as soon as she was emancipated from that yoke, she must have disclaimed all the doctrines that she was then forced to profess. She must have supported our general maritime rights; and it would have required extraordinary disinterestedness for her, at that moment, to have been even impartial respecting the single right in dispute between America (from whom she had nothing to hope or to fear), and England, her most effective and indispensable ally. Ages might elapse before such an opportunity of pledging Russia in savour of our maritime rights would again occur. But at least, why was not the congress opened in April? Will it be said, that the American ministers had not then received instructions adapted to the success of the allies, and the new state of Europe? But enough must have been known in America in January to dispose
that government to terminate a war which had no longer any object, in which they could no longer hope for aid or diversion, and in which their enemy was the ally of all Europe. The battle of Leipzic, the passage of the Rhine, the occupation of a third of France, the conqueror of Europe reduced to a doubtful and perilous defence of his capital, were surely motives enough for putting an end to a contest about the laws of naval war, at a moment when all war was about to close. And how could the English ministers then know the instiuctions given by the American government? It is perfectly ridiculous to urge these instructions now, and to say, as his hon. friend (Mr. Grant) had in substance said, that the ministers had prophesied truly by chance, and were right, though they did not know it. Men cannot be justified by instructions, of which they did not know the existence at the moment of action. It was impossible to explain this delay from the convention with monsieur in April, or the treaty of Paris in May, unless on the miserable policy of protracting war for the sake of striking a blow against America. The disgrace of the naval war, of balanced success between the British navy and the new-born marine of America, was to be redeemed by protracted warfare, and by pouring our victorious armies upon the American continent. That opportunity, fatally for us, arose. If the congress had opened in June, it was impossible that we should have sent out orders for the attack on Washington. We should have been saved from that success, which he considered as a thousand times more disgraceful and disastrous than the worst deseayThis success he charged on
2 the delay of the negotiation. It
was a success which made our naval power hateful and alarming to all Europe. It was a success which gave the hearts of the American people to every enemy who might rise against England. It was an enterprise which most exasperated a people, and least weakened a government, of any recorded in the annals of war. , For every justifiable purpose of present warfare it was almost impotent. To every wise object of prospective policy it was hostile. It was an attack, not against the strength or the resources of a state, but against the national honour and public affections of a people. After twenty-five years of the fiercest warfare, in which every great capital of the European continent had been spared, he had almost said, respected by enemies, it was reserved for England to violate all that decent courtesy towards the seats of national dignity, which, in the midst of enmity, manifests the respect of nations for each other, by an expedition deliberately and principally directed against palaces of government, halls of legislation, tribunals of justice, repositories of the muniments of property, and of the records of history—objects among civilized nations exempted from the ravages of war, and secured, as far as possible, even from its accidental operation, because they contribute nothing to the means of hostility, but are consecrated to purposes of peace, and minister to the common and perpetual interest of all human society. It seemed to him an aggravation of this atrocious measure, that ministers had attempted to justify the destruction of a distinguished capital, as a retaliation for some violences of inferior
American officers, unauthorised and disavowed by their government, against he knew not what village in Upper Canada. To make such retaliation just, there must always be clear proof of the outrage; in general also, sufficient evidence that the adverse government refused to make due reparation for it, and at last some proportion of the punishment to the offence. Here there was very imperfect evidence of the outrage— no proof of refusal to repair—and demonstration of the excessive and monstrous iniquity of what was falsely called retaliation. The value of a capital is not to be estimated by its houses, and warehouses, and shops. It consisted chiefly in what could be neither numbered nor weighed. It was not even by the elegance or grandeur of its monuments, that it was most dear to a generous people. They looked upon it with af. fection and pride as the seat of legislation, as the sanctuary of public justice, often as linked with the memory of past times, sometimes still more as connected with their fondest and proudest hopes of greatness to come. To put all these respectable feelings of a great people, sanctified by the illustrious name of Washington, on a level with half a dozen wooden sheds in the temporary seat of a provincial government, was an act of intolerable insolence, and implied as much contempt for the feelings of America, as for the common sense of mankind. On the right of searching foreign ships for English seamen, he mentioned a remarkable instance of its ancient and general acknowledgment, which he had lately found in the manuscript memoirs of king James II. That prince, being in Holland in 1657, was desi*