Page images
PDF
EPUB

Haro can be received as a channel wlich intrinsically answers to the channel of the treaty, but that, on the contrary, it is my firm and most conscientious conviction, with the same unfettered exercise of judgment, that the channel called the Rosario Strait is the only one that does intrinsically answer to the channel described in the treaty, and that, therefore, the boundary line should be carried through that channel, if the words of the treaty be strictly and literally adhered to.

'6. This being my firm conviction, it is not likely that I could accede to your views that the boundary line should be carried through the Canal de Haro, and as you remained firm in your conviction that it should be carried through that channel, it was very evident that we were never likely to fulfil the duties for which we were commissioned so long as each a lhered to his own opinion. Following out what appeared to me the only course left, and what seemed the clear path of duty if I wished to execute the trust reposed in me, I voluntarily offered to recede somewhat from my position, if youl would do the same, and suggested that a line of boundary should be run about midway between the two disputed channels. This proposition you refused to entertain. I, therefore, had no alternative left me but to propose a reference of the whole matter to our respective Governments, which proposition I brought forward at our last meeting.

7. Having thus, I trust, satisfactorily shown you that I have been hampered by no instructions which deprived me in the slightest of the full and entire exercise of my own judgment, I beg you will allow me to subscribe myself, with the highest esteem and consideration, your most obedient and humble servant,

" JAMES C. PREVOST, “ Her Britannic Majesty's First Commissioner for

“ determining the before-mentioned Boundary Line. " Archibald Campbell, Esq.,

“United States Commissioner North-west Boundary, &c."

K

Mr. Campbell rejoined in the following letter :(').

" United States North-west Boundary Commission,

“Fort Townshend, December 12, 1857. “SIR,-I have the honour to acknowledge the receipt this day of your letter of the 8th instant, in reply to mine of the 4th instant.

“ I regret that, instead of an extract from your commission, you did not furnislı me with a full copy of that instrument, as well as of other instructions by which you were governed in the performance of your duty as Joint Commissioner for carrying into effect that part of the first article of the treaty which relates to the water boundary line between the United States and the British possessions. As I am desirous of being placed upon an equal footing with yourself as regards a full knowledge of the instructions severally given to us by our respective Governments, I would respectfully request that you transmit to me copies of all instructions which have had any bearing upon the course adopted by you in our official intercourse as Commissioner on the part of the British Government for the determination of the boundary line.

“ If you desire it, I will cheerfully furnish you with a copy of my commission.

commission. You already have a copy of all the instructions I have received from my Government for the performance of my duty as Commissioner on the part of the United States.

“ With the highest respect and consideration, I have the honour to be, very respectfully, your most obedient servant,

" ARCHIBALD CAMPBELL, “ Commissioner on the part of the United States for

“ determining the North-west Boundary Line. Captain James C. Prevost, R.N., “ British Commissioner North-west Boundary, &c. &c."

(1) American State Papers, p. 94.

This was followed by another letter from Mr. Campbell to Captain Prevost, which was as follows: (1)

“ United States North-west Boundary Commission,

“ Fort Townshend, December 15, 1857. “SIR, – In order that you may be fully informed as to the powers and instructions which have governed me in my action as Commissioner on the part of the United States to carry into effect the first article of the treaty of June 15, 1846, I have concluded, without further delay, to furnish you with a copy of my commission, and have the honour to transmit the same herewith.

“With the highest respect and consileration, I have the honour to be your most obedient servant,

" ARCHIBALD CAMPBELL, “ Commissioner on the part of the United States for

“ determining the North-west Boundary Line. Captain James Prevost, R.N.,

“ British Commissioner, North-west Boundary Survey.”

The commission and instructions referred to in this letter have been already set out. It may be noticed that the instructions are thus described :

:()

“Mr. Campbell's instructions, so far as they relate to the determination of the Boundary Line."

It is to be inferred that the statement furnished by Mr. Campbell to Captain Prevost is an extract from the documents addressed to him by his Government.

Captain Prevost, in answer, wrote the following letter, enclosing therewith a copy of his commission, and a copy of his first letter of instructions, which have been given above :(3)—

(2) Idem, p. 96,

(1) American State Papers, p. 95.

(3) Ante, pp. 59, 61.

“ Her Britannic Majesty's Ship Satellite, Esquimault,

Vancouver's Island, December 22, 1857.(") “SIR,--I have the honour to acknowledge the receipt of your two letters, dated Fort Townshend, December 12th and December 15th.

“2. In reply to that of the former date, wherein you express your regret that I did not furnish you with a full copy of Her Majesty's commission, as well as of all other instructions by which I was governed in the performance of my duty as Joint Commissioner for carrying into effect that part of the first article of the treaty of 15th June, 1816, which relates to the water boundary between the United States and the British possessions, I must be permitted to express my regret—if not my surprise—that the very full and direct reply I made on the 8th instant to the inquiries contained in your letter of the 4th instant did not convey to you the meaning which I candidly, though most respectfully, conceive it ought to have done. Considering that at our first meeting our powers were mutually cxamined and found to be in due form and sufficient; considering that Her Majesty's commission was again placed in your hands, and again examined by you, when Captain Richards was introduced to you as Her Majesty's second commissioner; and considering the stage at which we had arrived in the duties assigned to us, I must say that when I received your letter of the 4th instant, it did appear to me to be somewhat out of order that you should, at this period, make a written application to me as to the nature of my powers, and should attempt to cast a doubt upon their scope being equal to your own, so far as the water boundary may be concerned. I, however, refrained from making any comment upon the act, but I readily and directly gave you the full information you asked for. In affording you that information I asserted, in the most straightforward and unmistakable manner, that I was governed by no instructions which would interfere with the full and entire exercise of my own judgment in the determination of the water boundary line, as established by the treaty. I

(") American State Papers, p. 97.

repeated what is to be found constantly affirmed in all my previous correspondence, that I could never conscientiously agree to your views as to the Canal de Arro being the boundary channel, nor conscientiously admit that it was a channel which answered to the channel determined by the treaty. I know not in what more positive and satisfactory manner I could answer the question you put to me, and could show you that I have not been governed by any prohibitory instructions in my proceedings, and that I have been acting entirely on my own conscientious convictions and on my own free judgment. In your letter of the 4th instant you asked me a simple question as to whether you were correct in your inference that I had been governed by instructions which prevented me from adopting the Canal de Arro as the boundary channel. In reply, I not only informed you that the inference was erroneous, but, being most anxious to satisfy you of the freedom of my action, I went beyond what you requested, for I furnished you with an extract from Her Majesty's commission, which was sufficient to show that, so long as I was acting as commissioner under that commission, I could not be governed by any instructions which would restrict the exercise of my judgment in the course of my proceedings. Such being the case, you must pardon me for feeling somewhat more than surprise, when I received your letter of the 12th instant, for it appears to me that notwithstanding all this evidence, and notwithstanding these assurances, you would still endeavour to insinuate that I have not been acting, to say the least, independently, in my official intercourse with you. Under such circumstances I respectfully conceive that, having a due regard to my own position, I. should be adopting no more than a natural course, and I should be committing no discourteous act, were I to decline to enter further into the subject; but as I am really desirous to disabuse your mind of any doubts you may have conceived as to my powers being equal to your own, and as I am unwilling to take any step, however much it might be warranted, which would in the least appear as if I wished to avoid furnishing

« ՆախորդըՇարունակել »