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must operate as a bounty in favour of American manufactures, which are already in an advanced state, in certais parts of the Union. Great Britain must be sensible of this fact, and aware of the encouragement which the present export duty gives them, and of the consequences attending it. I should presume that there was not much cause to apprehend, that she would tax the export of her manufactures to the United States, to prevent their being sent thence to other countries. The sole effect of such a tax would be to secure to her own vessels the carriage of the articles, if indeed that were attainable. In both cases the manufactures of Great Britain would be the subject of the commerce. The supply of the great, the productive and increasing markets of the United States, must be a primary object of British policy, and Great Britain would doubtless be cautious not to hazard it for one comparatives ly of much less importance.
Art. 6. As this article was approved, I shall only observe, that I considered the reservation contained in it important, as it enabled the United States to counteract the British policy, in respect to the trade with the West Indies, which is the object of it, by means the most efficacious, whenever they should be resorted to. The trade of Great Britain with the United States is carried on principally by circuitous voyages, in which her vessels pass from the ports of the United States to the West Indies. By suspending the intercourse between the United States and her West Indies, in British vessels, the chain would be broken, and the whole commerce in such vessels be, in a great measure, suspended. The provision in the article obviously looks to such an object, and the time of carrying it into effect, unless the trade should be placed on satisfactory ground, would have depended altogether on the United States.
Having already noticed the subjects which are embraced by the following articles, I shall add but little more, on any of them, to what is said in our joint lelter of January 3d, 1807. The 7th was taken literally from the treaty of 1794. The 3th and 9th amended, as you allow, the articles in that treaty on the same subject. The 10th, relative to blockade, taken in connection with the British paper of December 31, 1806, placed, as I presumed, that interest on ground which would be satisfactory. The pre
amble cannot affect it unfavourably, as it does not alter the acknowledged law. The only effect which it could have, would be to admonish the courts to be cautious in admitting evidence of notice, on account of the distance of the United States from the blockaded ports. It was supposed to give the United States a claim to a more, favourable rule in respect to evidence, than was allowed to powers more contiguous to the theatre of action. The doctrine contained in Mr. Merry's note to you was not contested by the British commissioners. It is, on the contrary, maintained in their note to us of December 31st, 1806, in which it is asserted to be notorious “ that the king did not declare any ports to be in a state of blockade without allotting to that object a force sufficient to make the entrance into them manifestly dangerous." I quote the passage in their note to observe that the doctrine is not made conditional on any other part of it, but is laid down as the established law. It justifies the additional remark that the preamble was not intended and cannot be construed to alter the law. It follows that it cannot produce any other effect than that which is above imputed to it.
The 13th article relates to the search of merchant vessels, and differs from the 19th of the treaty of 1794, in the introductory sentence, which enjoins it on the commanders of ships of war and privateers, to observe in the course of the war, which may then exist, as much as possible, the acknowledged rules and principles of the law of nations ; and also in the penal sum (which it increases] to be given by the commanders of privateers before they receive their commissions, as a security for their good conduct under them. It was supposed that in this, as in the preceding case, the law remained untouched, and that the stipulation produced no other effect, than to enjoin it on the governments respectively, to be particularly attentive to the conduct of its officers in the respect alluded to.
The 13th article and the paper of the British commissioners of the 31st of December, 1306, obviously look to the Russian convention, as the standard of the acknowledged law respecting the search of merchant vessels and blockade. That instrument was held constantly in view on both sides, in every discussion on those subjects, and indeed on every other to which it extends, and its doctrine admitted, especially in those, to be the established law. We were extremely desirous, and used our best exertions, to introduce articles to the same effect, into our treaty, but it was utterly impossible to accomplish it. It must however be allowed, that if engagements of the kind alluded to, especially in regard to blockade, for which there was a special document, would not be observ. cd, that it would be useless to stipulate them by treaty.
On the subject of the 17th article, I have already made some remarks under another head. I cannot think that a stipulation to receive the ships of war of each party, hospitably into the ports of the other, restrains them from limiting the number of ships to be admitted at one time, or from designating the ports to which they shall be admitted. A stipulation to admit them settles only, as I presume, the principle, that they shall be admitted, and leaves open to arrangement the other points connected with it. This opinion is supported by a passage in the article itself, as to the ports which secures to vessels which might be driven by stress of weather, &c. into ports not open to them in ordinary cases, an hospitable reception in such ports. Had the right to designate the ports been given up by the general stipulation, there would have been no necessity for that contained in this passage. The remark iş equally applicable to the other case, that of the number to be admitted at one time. As that must be an affair of special and strict regulation, an exception which admitted more, by securing rights to them in case they entered, would necessarily defeat the limitation itself.
The stipulation which relates to the good treatment of the officers of each party in the ports of the other, being reciprocal, contains no reflection on one, which is not applicable to the other; and I will venture to affirm that it is equally necessary in regard to Great Britain as to the United States. It is well known in respect to the latter, that the passions which were excited by the revolution, did not long survive the struggle ; that the sword was no sooner sheathed, than the calamities of the war were forgotten. The injured are always the first to forgive. It is, however, just to remark that time has essentially effaced, from the people of both nations, the hostilc impression which that arduous conflict produced.
The 23d article was thought to contain an useful stipulation by securing to the United States the advaniages in
navigation and commerce, which Great Britain might afterwards grant to any other nation. That stipulation was obviously founded on the right of the most favoured nation, and subject of course to the conditions incident to it. It amounts to this, that if Great Britain should concede any accommodation to another power in commerce with her East or West India colonies, or any other part of her dominions, gratuitously, the United States would be entitled to it on the same terms ; but if she made such accommodation, in consideration of certain equivalents to be given her in return, that the United States would not be entitled to those advantages without paying the equivalents. The doctrine is the same in its application to the United States. If they could grant any privileges in trade to France or Spain for admission into their West India colonies, Great Britain would be entitled to the same, provided she admitted the United States into her islands also, and not otherwise. I could not perceive therefore how it was possible that the United States should be injured by the stipulation contained in this article; while it was probable that they might derive some advantage from it. It could not restrain them from passing a navigation act to place them on an equal footing with Great Britain, especially if it was made general, or applied only to her and the other nations having such acts. The right to pass such an act was not taken away by any other stipulation in the treaty, and there was nothing in this article that had such a tendency. The terms “shall continue to be on the footing of the most favoured nation, &c.” refer to the principles established by the preceding articles, and not to the existing laws or regulations of either party. If the latter was the case, it would follow, that the tonnage duties, the discriminating duties, &c. would remain as they were. The preceding articles were intended, in the points 10 which they extended, to establish a standard of equality between the parties, to which the regulations of each, whether they exceeded or fell short of it, should be brought. It could not be doubted that the British export duty was of the first description, that it violated the principle of the most favoured nation. The British commissioners admitted the fact, and did not pretend to justify it on that ground. They urged in its favour only, that the same duty was mposed on exports to their own colonies in America, and
that if any change was made in it, to satisfy the claim of the United States on the principle of the right of the most favoured nation, it would be to raise it on the goods exported to other countries, not to reduce it on those sent to the United States. The principle, however, established by this article, being applicable to that duty, it was to be presumed that it might fairly be relied on to obtain a modi. fication of it, either by reducing the duty on exports to the United States, or raising it on those to other nations. There is nothing in this article to restrain the United States from adopting measures to counteract the British policy with respect to the West Indies. If that object had not been secured by a special article, from the possibility of being affected by the others, the principle established by the present one could not have affected it, otherwise than beneficially.
Having replied to your objections to the several articles of the treaty, and the papers connected with it, and given our view of them, I shall proceed to make some remarks on the whole subject to do justice to the conduct of the American commissioners in that transaction.
In every case which involved a question of neutral right, or even of commercial accommodation, Great Britaip was resolved to yield no ground which she could avoid, and was evidently prepared to hazard war, rather than yield much. There seemed to be no mode of compelling her to yield, than that of embarking in the war with the opposite belligerent, on which great question it belonged to the national councils to decide. We had pressed the claims of the United States in the negotiation, to the utmost limit that we could go, without provoking that issue. It is most certain that better ternis could not have been obtained at the time we'signed the treaty than it contains.
The state of the war in Europe suggested likewise the propriety of caution on our part. Russia was then on the side of England, and likely to continue so; and Austria, known to be in the same interest, was holding an equivocal attitude, and ready to take advantage of any favourable event that might occur. Prussia, lately powerful, had been defeated, but was not absolutely subdued; her king, the ally and friend of Alexander, kept the field with him, and made head against France. The emperor of France, far removed from his dominions, was making the bold and