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now, therefore close, by respectfully recommending the adoption of the accompanying resolutions. By order of the Committee, CHARLES FRANCIS ADAMS,
- - * - * , Resolved, That the right of the United State, and of the State of Maine, to to require of Great Britain the literal and immediate execution of the terms of the Second Article of the Treaty of 1783, so far as they relate to the boundary from the source of the St. Croix River to the north-westernmost head of Connecticut River, remains, after the lapse of more than half a century, unimpaired by the passage of time, or by the interposition of multiplied objections.
Resolved, That although there is no cause to apprehend any immediate, col. lision between the two nations on account of the controversy respecting the said: boundary, it is nevertheless most earnestly to be desired that a speedy and effectual termination be put to a difference, which might even, by a remote possibility, produce consequences that humanity would deplore. . . . . . . . . to ! . . . ; to t , . . . . . Resolved, That the late Report made to the Government of Great Britains by their Commissioners of Survey, Messrs. Featherstonhaugh and Mudge, though not to be regarded as having yet received the sanction of that Government, is calculated to produce in every part of the United States where it is , examined, a state of the public mind highly unfavourable to that conciliatory + temper, and to that mutual confidence in the good intentions of each other, without which it is hopeless to expect a satisfactory result to controversies between nations. - - -
Resolved, That the interest and the honour of Massachusetts alike demand a perseverance, not the less determined because it is temperate, in maintaining the rights of Maine. And that we now cheerfully repeat our often-recorded response to her demand, that the justice which has been so long withheld should be speedily done to her; and that, whilst we extend to her our sympathy for her past wrongs, we again assure her of our unshaken resolution to sustain the territorial rights of the Union.
Resolved, That his Excellency the Governor be requested to transmit a copy of these resolves, and the accompanying Report, to the Executive of the United States, and of the several States; and to each of the Senators and Members of the House of Representatives from Massachusetts in the Congress . of the United States.
[These Resolves passed the House on the 11th of March; were concurred in by the Senate on the 12th, and were approved by the Governor on the 13th of March, 1841.]
Mr. For to Viscount Palmerston.—(Received May 3.)
My Lord, Washington, April 13, 1841. I PERCEIVE by the last intelligence from England, that some misapprehension prevailed, both in Parliament and with the public, respecting certain resolutions alleged to have been passed by the State Legislature of Maine, in relation to the affairs of the Disputed Territory, and to the removal of the detachment of Her Majesty's troops now stationed there. The fact is, as far as I can learn by the latest reports received from Maine, that no resolutions upon the above subject have yet been adopted or passed by the State Legislature. The Legislature is still sitting; two sets of resolutions have been proposed, and are still under discussion; but no decision has yet been come to. One set of resolutions, proposed in the Senate, is of the tenor reported in my despatch to your Lordship, of the 21st of February, namely, that the Executive Government of Maine shall be directed to call upon the General Government of the United States to take measures for procuring the removal of the British troops from the Lake Temiscouata, and from the Madawaska Settlements. Another set of resolutions has been subsequently introduced in the House of Representatives by a very violent and turbulent member, of the name of Delesdernier, authorizing the State Government itself to take immediate measures for the removal of the British troops. These last are the resolutions quoted in Parliament, and commented upon by the English newspapers. Neither of the above sets of resolutions had yet, according to the last accounts, received the concurrence of the two Houses of the Maine Legislature. The question upon them was still pending. The more moderate and peaceful of the two political parties has this }. a majority in the State Legislature of Maine; and I should, therefore, ave no doubt of the first mentioned, and least offensive, of the two sets of resolutions prevailing, if it were not for the consideration that the “Boundary Excitement,” as it is called in Maine, never fails to be strongly influenced by other and extraneous causes of agitation; and that the alarming dispute which has arisen out of the business of Mr. McLeod, may draw the Legislature of Maine into more violent counsels than would otherwise have been followed. - I have, &c., (Signed) H. S. FOX.
Mr. For to Viscount Palmerston.—(Received May 16.)
My Lord, Washington, April 26, 1841.
I HEREWITH inclose a printed copy of the Report of the joint Committee of the two Houses of the State fore of Maine upon the North-Eastern Boundary. This Report was presented by the Committee to the Legislature on the 30th of March. It reiterates the usual assertions of the claims of the State of Maine, and complains, in the same tone as heretofore, of the occupation of certain posts within the Disputed Territory by detachments of Her Majesty's troops. The Report, however, concludes with recommending the adoption of certain resolutions, which, it will be seen, only go to the extent of calling upon the General Government at Washington, to take measures for the removal of the British troops; it is not recommended that the State Government of Maine should take such measures upon its own responsibility; this distinction is clo of great importance. I am not yet informed whether the resolutions, as above recommended by the Committee, have been finally adopted by the State Legislature; but I think there is little doubt that they will have been adopted. . .
I have, &c.,
(Signed) . H. S. FOX.
Report of the Joint Committee of the Senate and House of Representatives of Maine, on the North-Eastern Boundary.
THE Joint Select Committee upon the state of the North-Eastern Boundary, to whom were referred so much of the Governor's Address as relates to that subject, and also the Message from the late Governor, communicating his correspondence with the Lieutenant-Governor of New Brunswick and the President of the United States, together with certain Resolutions of the General Assembly of the State of Indiana, transmitted by the late Governor to the Legislature, at the late adjourned session, and certain Resolutions of the General Assembly of the State of Alabama, and certain Resolutions of the Legislature of Maryland just transmitted by the Governor at the present session, and also certain Resolves, originating in the House of Representatives and in Senate respectively, for repelling foreign invasion and providing for the protection of the State, and certain other Resolves from the Senate, respecting purposes of defence, have had the same under consideration, and now ask leave to submit the following Report:
When Maine assumed her place in the Union, and became an independent State, she adopted the Pole Star as her ensign. This well known point adorned. her crest; and it appropriately surmounted her shield. It signified that she intended to be true to the Constitution and the country; and that she determined, more than all, to be true to herself. From that direction she has not consciously departed. To that determination she will always be faithful. She does not mean to swerve from her path. She has frequently had occasion to express her Resolves; and circumstances have arisen to test the firmness of her principles and purposes. She is now called upon to do so again; and she is obliged to meet the emergency. We have come this year to one of those larger cycles of time, at which the State is called, by the forms of the Constitution, to fulfil some of its most vital organic functions; and among them returns the more frequent concern. of attending to the grave subject of its long unsettled boundary. The line which divided the ancient Commonwealth of Massachusetts from what once belonged to her by her original charter, east of the St. Croix, was one drawn due north. That river had been considered as the eastern boundary, ever since the Peace of Ryswick; and this line would have gone, as it was extended upon Mitchell’s Map, to the St. Lawrence, if it had not been for the terms of the Treaty of 1783, which were the same, in that respect, as those of the Proclamation of 1763. Those were “the highlands that divide the rivers that empty themselves into the St. Lawrence from those that fall into the Atlantic Ocean,” or Sea. That highland descriptive boundary was, at that time, o well known and established, geographically, historically, and politically. Geography, history, the public records of the acts of the Crown and Parliament of Great Britain, still standing among her chronicles, all alike attest the truth and verity of the description; which, it may be observed, subsequent, and even recent, explorations of the face of nature, in that region, with the perhaps superfluous aids and lights of modern science, have only served to illustrate and confirm. The cotemporaneous Acts of the British Crown, in 1763, establishing the Governments of Quebec and Nova Scotia, formed that abutment, then created for the first time, called the North-west Angle of Nova Scotia, which was adopted and fixed by the Treaty of 1783, as the first bound to begin at, of the United States. This point was considered so clear, in the words of the Treaty, as to prevent all dispute. #. Bay of Chaleurs and the River Restigouche, or one of its branches," (which are merely sources of that bay) has always been regarded as the pract tical line of demarcation and jurisdiction between the two contiguous Provinces of New Brunswick and Lower Canada. The north-west angle of Nova Scotia had not been definitely ascertained. Wherever a point of highland could be found upon the meridian North of St. John, properly parting waters that went into the St. Lawrence and the Atlantic, there might be ground for tracing and applying that term. Some doubt was expressed, for the first time, on the part of the British Commissioners, in the negotiations which took place previous to the Treaty of Ghent, whether that small portion of unsettled country, which interrupted the communication between Quebec and Halifax, did not already belong to Great Britain. This doubt was only raised, at a late moment, for the purpose apparently of soliciting a cession (for which an equivalent had been previously tendered and declined) of at least that portion of unoccupied territory. Long before this time, after the Peace of 1783, there had been a settlement formed upon the banks of the River Madawaska, by some Acadian fugitives, who had been expelled from the Province of Nova Scotia, and again routed from their next place of refuge in New Brunswick, to this then sequetered spot, where they were joined by a few French Canadians, far, as they supposed, from further touble and molestation. The point respecting the source of the St. Croix was determined under the Treaty Convention of 1794, which finally provided for the surrender of all posts held after the peace. Previous to this period, before that point was determined, the Commonwealth of Massachusetts caused the survey and running of a line of a large tract of its territory, commencing from the Schoodic Lakes, and extending, upon the onagnetic north, across the St. John, above its junction with the Madawaska. This was an undertaking of great arduousness, and was attended with extreme suffering to the party employed, who came near perishing in the woods. The eastern line ran about 150 miles, and went as much as fifteen miles over the north side of the St. John. The surveying party, there much exhausted, turned aside to the first highlands they found towards the west, mistaking the tributary streams of the River Madawaska and its lakes for rivers emptying into the St. Lawrence. The proceeding was begun in 1792, and the plan on which this survey is exhibited, by Park Holland, was executed as early as 1793 or 1794. The right of crossing the St. John was recognized and con'firmed, after completing the Convention of 1794, respecting the St. Croix, by the British Minister residing in the United States, to whose advice the operation of it was referred, and who regarded it as a theme of congratulation, that thereby, in consequence of the arrangement which he recommended, the line would cross the St. John above the Grand Falls, where it would be less prejudicial in any respect, and more beneficial, on the whole, to the interest of Great Britain, and the integrity of her dominions. Previous to this period the Provincial Government of New Brunswick had undertaken, probably without being aware of any wrong, to make grants of confirmations to French settlers at Madawaska. But it was also at the same time necessarily and indeed actually acknowledged by the official authorities of New Brunswick, that the North-western Boundary of that province extended across the St. John, and was claimed to the Southern highland Boundary of Quebec. - Massachusetts, it is well known, continued after this period, in the tundoubted exercise of her eminent domain, to extend her grants and surveys into this region, on both sides of the Aroostook, and thus into the proper valley of the St. John. This went on until the work of settlement and improvement, "impeded in some measure by disadvantages of distance, and want of convenient approach and communication, was interrupted, and suspended, by the break‘ing out of the war in 1812. The delay to have the true line drawn between the two Governments of the United States and Great Britain was one cause among those which operated materially to retard the growth of Maine, and the prosperity of Massachusetts, in that direction. Conventional agreements, for this purpose, were negotiated between the two National Governments, by their public diplomatic agents, one in 1803, and the other in 1806. The first was rejected by the Senate, and the other by the President, on account of matters with which they were connected, having nothing to do with this ‘subject. : : bj From this period, and from this * state of things upon that border, 2
may be dated, with propriety, that usurpation which the British Provincial authorities began, progressively, to exercise in that quarter, rendered more easy and accessible to them by the avenue of the St. John, over the peaceful and unresisting population of Madawaska. For these purposes the point was more approachable by the authorities upon the side of New Brunswick, although the absurdity of such a pretension was apparent, even as between that Province and Lower Canada, and was manifested by a map of the territory published by authority of Parliament in 1827, as well as by other subsequent British maps. The privilege which was enjoyed, of a more direct communication than they were entitled to, by this route, across the corner of our territory, was one never, denied, or even objected to, and drawn into controversy, until it was first challenged as a sort of acquired right, and arrogated as an absolute pretension. Its germ first developed itself in the ambiguous and circuitous forms of expression, by which the British negotiators went about to accomplish some point of this kind at Ghent. Maine entered the Union in 1819, without any apprehension, or even suspicion, that her material rights, as an independent State, entitled to certain limits, and that her title especially to a large part of her territory, derived from the Treaty of Independence, if of no prior origin, and as released and confirmed to her, upon her separation, by Massachusetts, were called into question, or were capable of being drawn into controversy. . The first census of the United States, taken after our admission into the Union, in 1820, embraced the settlement of Madawaska; and one of the first Acts passed by the Legislature of this State, in the same year, was a Resolve, earnestly calling the attention of the National Government to this subject, not then brought to a close, as it was understood, by any definite proceeding of the Commission established under the provision of the Treaty of Ghent. It was some time afterwards discovered that, by some singular oversight, or obliquity, or, if it may more properly be so deemed, mistake, on the part of those who were employed in this business on behalf of the United States, some change or transmutation of the subject was permitted to take place, and thenceforward fatally perplex all future proceedings under that Commission. The agents, on both sides, were unquestionably most respectable and accomplished persons, who devoted themselves with eminent zeal to the interests of their respective Governments, as those interests presented themselves to their minds. But it may be deemed to have been among the misfortunes attending the devious course of proceeding adopted since the Treaty of Ghent, that the agents on the part othe respective Governments were composed on one side entirely, of natives of this country who had adhered to the cause of Great Britain at the Revolution, and that no citizen of the section principally concerned, namely, of Massachusetts, was employed by the United States. The consequence of this inadvertence was, that the agents of Great Britain were permitted to stop and assume a position at Mars Hill, a solitary and isolated projection, rising to a height uncalled for by the Treaty, unaccompanied by any of the circumstances of the description, and destitute of a single feature of it—even to that solitary pre-eminence which is so entirely unlike a general highland conformation. Without inquiring how this happened, or undertaking to say what the American agents ought to have done under these circumstances, and whether they ought not to have refused to proceed, and to have protested at once against the total departure from the rule of proceeding required by the Treaty, it is not too much to say that all further labour after this was worse than lost, and thrown away. The whole of this proceeding was, thenceforward, conducted and carried on to its unfortunate termination, without any privity or knowledge on the part of Massachusetts or any of her authorities; and by a sequel, which was, hardly, perhaps, contemplated as a consequence of this solecism, (allowing the stoppage at Mars Hill,) an enormous and sudden expansion afterwards took place of what assumed the specious form, and obtained the factitious denomination of the British claim to about one-third of the territory of Maine—a tract which thereby acquired the designation, too easily allowed to pass into use, of Disputed Territory; and it is needless to say that this circumstance has since proved to be pregnant with the utmost mischief to the State, and to have been the prolific source of almost every variety of evil to its peace and prosperity. It turns out, by the recent brilliant scientific exploration of Major Graham, as was insisted at the time when the pretence