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be come to between you, on the part of Her Majesty's Government, and Mr. Forsyth, on the part of the Government of the United States, purporting that two Commissioners should be appointed, one by each Government, who should have charge of maintaining order in the Disputed Territory, during the interval of time which might elapse before the question of Boundary should be finally settled.
I then pointed out the means which I considered best adapted to carry this object into effect by the employment, under the directions of the abovementioned Commissioners, of a civil force in the capacity of constables, to consist of an equal number of British subjects and of American citizens.. .
With reference to that instruction, I now transmit to you a copy of a despatch marked Confidential, dated the 27th of June last, froin the Governor: General of British North America, to the Secretary of State for the Colonial Department, stating his views with respect to the negotiation of a provisional agreement respecting the exercise of jurisdiction in the Disputed Territory, pending the settlement of the general question. .
It appears from this despatch, that Mr. Thomson is of opinion, and his reasoning thereupon seems conclusive, that it would be much better that the force to be employed for these purposes should be composed of regular troops of the British and United States Governments, than that the duties should be done by civil posse on either side.
I have consequently to instruct you to negotiate upon this matter with the United States' Government in accordance with the views stated in Mr. Thomson's despatch.
I am, &c., (Signed) PALMERSTON.
. No. 8. .. . .. .
: Mr. Fox to Viscount Palmerston.—(Received September 1.), My Lord,
; Washington, July 30, 1840. of', 'I HAVE had the honour to receive your Lordship's despatch of the 4th of this month, acquainting me, for communication to the Government of the United States, that Lieutenant-Colonel Mudge and Mr. Featherstonhaugh, the Commissioners appointed last year to explore and survey the Disputed Territory, having been prevented by want of time, and by the advanced period of the season, from completing their examination and survey of a portion of the Boundary Line claimed by the United States, lying north of the River St. John and in the
determined that such examination and survey should now be completed, Lieutenant Broughton, of the Royal Engineers, and Mr. James D. Featherstonhaugh, have been selected as joint surveyors for that service.
I have the honour herewith to inclose the copy of a letter which I have addressed to the Secretary of State of the United States, officially communicating to him the above information.
I have, &c., (Signed) H. S. FOX
Inclosure in No. 8.''
: Mr. Fox to Mr. Forsyth. r. ... a ' .
Washington, July 28, 1840. I HAVE been directed by Her Majesty's Government to acquaint you, for the information of the Government of the United States, that Lieutenant-Colonel
Mudge 'and Mr. G. W. Featherstonhaugh, the Commissioners appointed last year to explore and survey the territory in dispute between Great Britain and the United States, having been prevented by want of time and by the advanced period of the season, from then completing their examination and survey of a certain portion of the Boundary Line claimed by the United States lying north of the River St. John' and in the vicinity of the River St. Lawrence; and Her Majesty's Government having determined that such examination and survey shall now bé completed, Lieutenant Broughton of the Royal Engineers, and Mr. James D. Featherston haugh, have been selected as joint surveyors for 'that service. These gentlemen have arrived from England at Halifax, on board the steam-ship “ Britannia ;' and they will immediately proceed to execute the objects of their Commission. . I avail myself, &c.
(Signed) H. S. FOX.
Mr. Fox to Viscount Palmerston.—(Received September 1.)
Washington, July 30, 1840. . IN my despatch of the 5th of this month, I had the honour to inclose a printed copy of the President's Message to Congress of the 27th of June, in which, after transmitting the last correspondence between the United States' Secretary of State and myself upon the subject of the Boundary Negotiation, and referring to the report of the British Commissioners Colonel Mudge and Mr. Featherstonhaugh, which had been communicated by me to the United States' Government, the President called upon Congress to enable the Executive to effect a new preparatory survey, by American Commissioners, of those parts of the Disputed Territory which are especially treated of in the Report of the British Commissioners.
An Act was accordingly passed by the two Houses of Congress, shortly before their adjournment on the 21st of this month, appropriating the sum of 25,000 dollars for the purpose required.
The nomination of the American Commissioners has been made without delay; and they will commence their labours early in the month of August. ... I have the honour to inclose the copy of an official letter addressed to me by the Secretary of State, acquainting me with the appointment of the American Commissioners, and informing me of the mode in which it is intended they should prosecute their investigations. I likewise inclose the copy of my reply to Mr. Forsyth's letter. I transmit copies of this correspondence to his Excellency the Governor-General, and to the Lieutenant-Governor of New Brunswick.
I have, &c., .. (Signed) H.'S. FOX.
Inclosure 1 in No. 9.
Department of State, Washington, July 25, 1840. I HAVE the honour to acquaint you for the information of the Government of Her Britannic Majesty and of the Authorities of the North American British Provinces, that the President of the United States, in accordance with the provisions of a recent Act of Congress, has appointed Mr. James Renwick, Mr. Parker Cleveland, and Captain Andrew Talcott, accompanied by a proper number of assistants, to proceed to the territory in dispute between the United States and Great Britain on the north-eastern frontier of this Republic, for the purpose of making, during the present summer, a topographical survey of various parts of that and the adjoining regions for the use and information of the American Government. This step, it is proper to state, has been taken in consequence of the execution of a similar measure on the part of Her Majesty's Government, the results of which were lately communicated by yourself; the Commissioners abovenamed are instructed to meet at Portland, in the State of Maine, early in August next, and will thence proceed forthwith to the performance of the duties which have been assigned to them respectively. With a view to the prompt discharge of this service, the President has deemed it expedient to separate the Commission into three several field parties, and to direct that their operations be prosecuted simultaneously in different parts of the disputed and adjoining territory. The Commissioners will subsequently meet together at some convenient place, and make a joint report to this department of the result of their labours.
I avail myself, &c.,
(Signed) JOHN FORSYTH.
Inclosure 2 in No. 9.
Mr. Fox to Mr. Forsyth. Sir,
Washington, July 28, 1840. I HAVE the honour to acknowledge the receipt of your letter of the 25th instant, in which you acquaint me, for the information of Her Majesty's Government, that, in accordance with the provisions of a recent Act of Congress, the President has appointed Mr. James Renwick, Mr. Parker Cleveland, and Captain Andrew Talcott, accompanied by other persons as assistants, to proceed to the territory in dispute between Great Britain and the United States on the northeastern frontier of the United States, for the purpose of making during the present summer a topographical survey of various parts of that and the adjoining regions, for the use and information of the American Government.
I shall not fail duly to make known the above communication, and the information which you also convey to me of the method of proceeding which the American Commissioners are directed to adopt, both to Her Majesty's Government in England, and to Her Majesty's Colonial Authorities in North America.
I avail myself, &c. (Signed) H. S. FOX.
Mr. Fox to Viscount Palmerston.—(Received September 1.) (Extract.)
Washington, July 30, 1840. I HAD the honour to receive, by the Messenger Crotch, your Lordship’s despatch of the 30th of June, conveying to me the Draft of a Convention prepared by Her Majesty's Government for acceptance by the Government of the United States, for the appointment of two Commissioners, the one to explore and survey the disputed Line of Boundary between the British possessions in North America and the Republic of the United States on the North-Eastern Frontier of the United States, and to lay down that Line of Boundary in conformity with the Treaty of 1783; the other, to arbitrate on those points with respect to which the first Commission may be unable to come to a decision.
I have officially transmitted the Draft of Convention to the United States' Government, and in making that communication I have addressed the inclosed note to the Secretary of State, embodying the instructions and the substance of the principal observations contained in your Lordship’s despatch. . I cannot, of course, as yet pretend to say what will be the result of this just and pacific offer on the part of Her Majesty's Government.
. No formal answer will probably be returned until consultation shall have been had between the President's Governmenti and the State of Maine; possibly not until after the State of Maine shall have given its vote for the Presidential election in the beginning of next November. The position of things is undoubtedly at this moment more favourable to a satisfactory settlement of the Boundary Question, than it has been for the last few years preceding. The people of Maine, from several causes, have been made to stand aside, and to leave the Boundary negotiation in the hands of the National Government; and what is the most important, the restored tranquillity of Canada and the pacification of the Canadian Frontier, have for the present rendered the Question of the NorthEastern Boundary an isolated question, and therefore comparatively uninteresting and unimportant to the rest of the United States excepting Maine.
Although I think it probable, as is above stated, that no definite or formal answer will for some weeks, or perhaps months to come, be returned by the United States Government to the Draft of Convention now offered by Great Britain, yet I shall hope shortly to obtain, informally, some knowledge of the President's own wishes and opinions upon the subject. Congress adjourned on the 21st of this month, to meet again on the 4th of next December. The correspondence which is now passing between the two Governments will consequently not be made public in the United States until that period.
(Signed) H. S. FOX
Inclosure in No. 10.
Mr. Fox to Mr. Forsyth.
Washington, July 28, 1840. THE Undersigned, Her Britannic Majesty's Envoy Extraordinary and Minister Plenipotentiary, has the honour herewith, by direction of Her Majesty's Government, to convey to the Secretary of State of the United States the Draft of a Convention between the two Governments, for the appointment of two Commissions : the one, to explore and survey the line of Boundary between the British provinces of New Brunswick and Canada and the United States, and to determine and lay down that Boundary in conformity with the Treaty of 1783; the other Commission to arbitrate on those matters with respect to which the first Commission may be unable to come to a decision.
Her Majesty's Government are persuaded that the Draft of Convention now offered will be received as a fresh proof of the earnest desire of Her Majesty's Government to bring the long-pending question of disputed boundary to a just and satisfactory conclusion.
It will be recollected that the Government of the United States made a proposal to Great Britain in the year 1833, that a Commission of Survey should be appointed by the two Governments, to search for the highlands of the Treaty of 1783. Her Majesty's Government accepted that proposal in substance, but suggested certain modifications in its details. The most important of those modifications were assented to by the United States; and Her Majesty's Government prepared the Draft of a Convention, of which the preamble recited the agreement that had been come to by the two Governments, and of which the articles were so framed as in the opinion of Her Majesty's Government to secure the just execution of that agreement.
But when the Draft of Convention, so prepared, was received at Washington, the Government of the United States appeared materially to have changed its views; and, without assigning at the time any specific reason for not abiding by an agreement which had been come to with respect to a proposal first originating with itself, the Government of the United States transmitted to England in reply a Draft of Convention differing essentially from that in which the British Government thought they had embodied the result of an agreement previously negotiated.
The chief motive assigned, or rather implied at the time, by the Government of the United States for rejecting the British Draft of Convention, and which motive has since been more distinctly expressed in a recent note from the Secretary of State to the Undersigned, was, that in the actual state of things it had become inexpedient for the two Governments to take any new measure in the negotiation of the Boundary Question which should not carry within itself the certainty of leading to a final settlement. Her Majesty's Government entirely concur in that opinion: and they think the Draft of Convention which they proposed last year will be found, upon examination, to have contained provisions which must necessarily have led to a final adjustment.
The British Draft did not, indeed, contain any provision for referring to arbitration those points whereon the members of the Commission, and the two Governments who were to appoint them, might be unable to agree; and it is undoubtedly true that such a provision is the best calculated, in questions like the present, to ensure a final settlement. But the chief cause why the British Draft of Convention did not contain a provision for the final adjustment of disputed points through the arbitration of friendly Sovereigns or States, was, that no such provision had been then definitely proposed by the Government of the United States; but that, on the contrary, it was understood that the State of Maine distinctly refused its consent to any further arbitration by a foreign Power.
The American Counter-Draft of Convention, transmitted to England in the summer of last year, contains a definite provision for arbitration; and Her Majesty's Government, earnestly desiring to see the question of Boundary finally settled, and aware that there is little prospect of its ever being so settled without the introduction, in some shape or other, of the principle of arbitration, now willingly agree to adopt that principle.
The Draft of Convention, therefore, now offered by Her Majesty's Government, contains a provision for establishing a Commission of Arbitration.
The American Counter-Draft has appeared to Her Majesty's Government, in other respects, and in many of its details, to be open to serious objections.
While Her Majesty's Government consent, as is above stated, to adopt the principle of arbitration, and are willing also to assent to the particular mode proposed by the President of the United States for constituting the arbitrating authority, Her Majesty's Government are, at the same time, of opinion that there will be no advantage in carrying beyond the limits of necessity the employment and application of the arbitrating Power.
The provisions of the American Draft appear to Her Majesty's Government to carry the application of the arbitrating Power beyond what the necessity of the case requires.
: It is proposed in that Draft to stipulate, that if the Joint Commission to be appointed by the two Governments shall not be able to agree as to the whole Boundary, then the determination of the whole of the Boundary is to be referred to the Commission of Arbitration, who are to decide the entire line from the Monument at the head of the River St. Croix to the point where the 45th degree of north latitude strikes the River St. Lawrence. . Now it may happen that the arbitrating Commission may be obliged to decide and determine the whole of the line in question; in the event, that is to say, of the Commission of Survey being unable to agree upon any part of it. But it appears needless to assume that such will be the case : and Her Majesty's Government are of opinion that the preferable course will be, to provide that the Commissioners of Survey shall decide finally all points upon which they can agree; and that it shall be those points only upon which the Commission of Survey cannot agree, that the Commission of Arbitration shall be called upon to determine..
"It is further proposed in the American Draft, that each Government shall make out a statement to be laid before the Commission of Arbitration. Her Majesty's Government are of opinion that it will be much better that the docu- . ments to be laid before the Commission of Arbitration shall be the Reports of the Commission of Survey, accompanied by any observations which each Government may think fit to make thereupon.
The American Draft of Convention proposes that the Commission of Arbi. tration shall be empowered to appoint surveyors to make surveys, and that the two Governments shall bind themselves to adopt, as conclusive, the Reports of these irresponsible surveyors. Such a proposal appears to Her Majesty's Government to be wholly inadmissible: and instead thereof, the Draft now offered provides, that any topographical information wanted by the Commission of Arbitration shall be obtained, through the two Governments, from the Commission of Survey.