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means the destruction of an adjacent prosperity without gain to the prevalent party-a mutual, physical, and moral deterioration which ought to be abhorrent to patriots on both sides, and which, I am sure, no two men will exert themselves more to prevent than the parties to this unofficial correspondence.
As an intelligent observer of the current of popular sentiment in the United States, you cannot have failed to note that the disputed interpretation of the treaty of 1818, and the action of the Canadian officials towards American fishing vessels during the past season, has awakened a great deal of feeling. It behoves those who are charged with the safe conduct of the honour and interests of the respective countries by every means in their power sedulously to remove all causes of difference. The roundabout manner in which the correspondence on the fisheries has been necessarily (perhaps) conducted, has brought us into the new fishing season, and the period of possible friction is at hand, and this admonishes us that prompt action is needed.
I am prepared, therefore, to meet the authorised agents of Great Britain at this capital at the earliest possible day, and enter upon negotiations for a settlement of all differences. The magnitude of the interests involved, and the far-reaching and disastrous consequences of any irritating and unfriendly action, will, I trust, present themselves to those in whose jurisdiction the fisheries lie, and cause a wise abstention from vexatious enforcement of disputed powers. Awaiting your reply, I am, very truly yours,
T. F. BAYARD. SIR CHARLES TUPPER, ETC.,
On June 6th, 1887, I replied “personally and unofficially” to Mr. Bayard as follows:
June 6, 1887. MY DEAR MR. BAYARD,-I had great pleasure in receiving your letter of May 31st, evincing as it does the importance which you attach to an amicable adjustment of the fisheries question and the maintenance of the cordial commercial relations between the United States and Canada, under which such vast and mutually beneficially results have grown up. I entirely concur in your statement that we both seek to attain a just and permanent settlement, and that there is but one way to procure it—and that is by a straightforward treatment, on a liberal and statesmanlike plan, of the entire commercial relations of the two countries. I note particularly your suggestions that as the interests of Canada are so immediately concerned, Her Majesty's Government should be invited to depute a Canadian statesman to negotiate with you a
modus vivendi to meet present emergencies, and also a permanent plan to avoid all disputes," and I feel no doubt a negotiation thus undertaken would greatly increase the prospects of a satisfactory solution. I say this, not because I believe that there has been any disposition on the part of the British Government to postpone Canadian interests to its own, or to retard by needless delay a settlement desired by and advantageous to the people of Canada and of the United States, but because I have no doubt that direct personal communications will save valuable time and render each side
better able to comprehend the needs and the position of the other.
I am greatly flattered by your kind personal allusion to myself. The selection of the persons who might be deputed to act as Commissioners would, however, as you are aware, rest with Her Majesty's Government. Our experience has been to the effect that the selection has in most cases, as far as it concerned the choice of the representatives of the Dominion, been made with careful regard to public feeling in this country.
I have thought it my duty and also the most effectual manner of giving effect to your suggestion, to make known to Lord Lansdowne the purport of my correspondence with you. He is strongly desirous of facilitating a settlement, and will at once bring the matter before the Secretary of State, with an expression of his hope that no time will be lost in taking steps for establishing, by means of personal communication with your Government, a modus vivendi such as you have described, and also for arriving at an understanding in regard to a lasting adjustment of our commercial relations. In the earnest hope that your proposal for the settlement of this vexed question may result at an early day in a solution satisfactory and beneficial to both countries, I remain, yours faithfully,
CHARLES TUPPER. THE HON. T. F. BAYARD, ETC.,
Washington. Lord Lansdowne in turn communicated with the Colonial Office. The result was an arrangement for a conference at which all outstanding
questions between the two countries, including the Behring Sea seal fisheries, the Alaska boundary line, and the Atlantic fisheries, were to be discussed and, if possible, disposed of. I advised the Imperial Government to select Sir John Macdonald as fellowplenipotentiary to act with the Rt. Hon. Joseph Chamberlain. Sir John would not hear of this proposal, and insisted that I should go, so I was appointed one of the joint British plenipotentiaries to negotiate the proposed treaty. My other colleague was Sir Lionel Sackville West, British Minister in Washington.
My first intimation that I was likely to be sent as one of the British Commissioners was conveyed to me in the following letter from Mr. Chamberlain :
Highbury, Moor Green, Birmingham,
Sept. 4, 1887. DEAR SIR CHARLES TUPPER, I hear with great pleasure that there is some chance of your being associated with the work of the new Fishery Commission. In any case, I should be very glad of the opportunity of talking the subject over with you, as I know you have given special attention to it. Is there any hope that you could pay me a visit here any time this month ? If
If you could spare the time to run down for any Saturday and Sunday you would give me very great pleasure, and we could quietly discuss the policy to be adopted.—Believe me, yours very truly,
The Hon. Mr. Bayard, who afterwards served as American Ambassador at the Court of St. James,
Mr. (now Judge) Putnam, of Massachusetts, and Professor Angell, of Michigan, represented the United States.
Our instructions may be gathered from the following letters :
Colonial Office, Downing Street,
September 21, 1887. DEAR SIR CHARLES TUPPER,—Sir H. Holland wishes
to know that H.M. Government and the U.S. Government have nearly agreed upon the terms of reference on the Fishery Commission which run at present.
To consider and adjust all questions respecting rights of fishery in the seas adjacent to British North America and Newfoundland which are in dispute between the two Governments, and any other questions which may arise in the course of the negotiations and which they may be authorised by their respective Governments to consider and adjust.
I am now asking F.0. concurrence to telegraph to Lord Lansdowne to the above purport.—Yours, etc.
(Signed) JOHN BRAMSTON.
9 Victoria Chambers, London, S.W.,
September 22, 1887. DEAR MR. BRAMSTON,– I received last night your confidential note containing the memorandum on the proposed terms of reference to the Fishery Commission. I cannot but think that it would be very desirable that they should be so framed as to embrace the question of the seal fisheries in Behring's Sea as well as the fisheries on the Atlantic coast. As