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offices, they shall each, in the presence of all the others, make oath or affirmation, before the principal Magistrate residing, or acting, at the said city of Boston, that they will impartially examine and decide, according to the best of their skill and judgment, all points relating to their duties as Commissioners; and having done this, they shall then forthwith enter upon the discharge of their duties as hereinafter defined.
The line of boundary having been already ascertained and agreed upon from the mouth of the St. Croix River to its source, as marked by the monument placed there by the joint Commission appointed for that purpose by the two Governments, the Commissioners to be appointed according to the preceding Article I., shall proceed to explore those portions of the boundary between the United States of America and the British Dominions in North America, which are described as extending is from the source of the River St. Croix directly north to the north-west angle of Nova Scotia, thence along the said Highlands which diride those rivers that empty themselves into the River St. Lawrence from those which fall into the Atlantic Ocean, to the north-westernmost head of Connecticut River; thence down along the middle of that river to the 45th degree of north latitude; thence by a line due west on said latitude, until it strikes the
uois or Cataragul he duty hereby assigned of said boundary, as the
In the performance of the duty hereby assigned to them, they shall commence at such point to explore the several portions of said boundary, as two of the three American, and two of the three British, Commissioners shall determine; and in case of disagreement between them, then at such point as may be decided by lot.
The Commissioners, having made a general survey of the country along which the line of boundary is to run, shall proceed to lay that boundary down accurately on the surface of the earth, and to mark it by monuments and other landsmarks.
For this purpose they shall first proceed to lay down the line from the monument at the head of the St. Croix to the north-west angle of Nova Scotia : and from thence along the highlands described in the Treaty of 1783, to the north-westernmost head of Connecticut River; thence down the middle of that river to the 45th degree of north latitude; thence by a line due west on said latitude, until it strike the River Iroquois or Cataraguy."
The Commissioners shall make a report of their proceedings, and shall prepare a map of the Boundary Line, or of such parts thereof as they may have
eed upon : such report and map shall be prepared in duplicate, and shall be signed and sealed by the Commissioners; and one copy of the said report and map shall be transmitted to the Government of the United States, and the other copy to the British Government.
It shall be the duty of the Commissioners to explore and survey all such other parts of the disputed and contiguous territory, besides those mentioned in the preceding Article, as any two of the Commissioners on either side may think it would be useful to examine, in order the better to ascertain the true boundary intended by the Treaty of 1783.
Whenever two of the three British Commissioners and two of the three American Commissioners shall agree upon any point or matter, the unanimous opinion and decision of those Four shall be deemed and taken to be the opinion and decision of the Commission, and such opinion and decision shall be recorded, and shall be signed by the Four concurring Commissioners, and shall be reported by them to the two Governments; and it is hereby agreed between the Contracting Parties, that every opinion and decision so recorded and reported by the Commission shall be deemed final, and shall be held binding upon both the High Contracting Parties.
Each of the High Contracting Parties shall be at liberty to lay before the Commission, for its information, copies of any official documents, or of any maps or surveys which such Contracting Party may think calculated to throw light upon the matters which the Commission is appointed to investigate, or likely to assist the Commission in the performance of its duties. But no such maps or surveys shall be deemed by the Commissioners to be other than ex parte evidence, furnished in order to assist the Commission in its own investigations, unless such maps and surveys shall be acknowledged and signed by two Commisssioners on each side, as authentic evidence of the facts upon which they may bear..
Each of the High Contracting Parties will give to the other copies of .. any documents, maps, or surveys, which such Party may so lay before the Commission..
. It being the object, as it is the earnest desire, of the High Contracting Parties to effect a just and amicable settlement of the line of boundary in question, by the direct action of the joint Commission hereby established; or if that shall prove impracticable, to obtain authentic evidence of all material facts that are connected therewith for the better guidance of the future action of the High Contracting Parties upon the subject, it is agreed between them that it shall be the duty of the said Commissioners to collect as far as they may be able, to obtain the same, and carefully authenticate all such maps and surveys of the disputed and of the contiguous territory, and all official documents having relation to the premises, as will, in the opinion of the Commissioners, or of any two on either side, serve to elucidate the true intent and meaning of the parties to the Treaty of 1783 upon the point in question; and to this end, the High Contracting Parties further agree to furnish each other with authentic copies of all maps and surveys of the disputed and contiguous territory, and also with like copies of all official documents connected with the negotiation of the said Treaty which are to be found in the public archives of the respective. Governments, and which two of the said Commissioners on either side shall believe to have a bearing upon the subject under discussion.
If it should happen that upon any points or matters which may come under the consideration of the Commission within the scope of its duties, four of the Commissioners aforesaid, that is to say, two on each side, should be unable to come to an united opinion or decision, the Commissioners shall draw up, either jointly or separately, a report or reports, stating and explaining in detail the points on which they differ, and the grounds upon which their respective opinions have been formed.
The reports of the Commissioners on both sides shall be prepared in duplicate, and one original copy of eachi, together with copies of all documents or maps annexed thereto, shall be transmitted by the British Commissioners to the British Government, and the other copy shall be transmitted by the American Commissioners to the Government of the United States.
If the two Governments should not be able, upon a review of the statements. of the Commissioners, to come to an understanding upon the points about which the Commissioners shall have so differed, such points shall, at the desire of either of the two Governments, be referred for decision to a Commission of Arbitration, consisting of three persons eminent for their scientific attainments, and not being citizens of the United States or subjects of Great Britain.
The President of the United States and Her Britannic Majesty engage to choose three friendly Sovereigns or States, each of whom shall be invited by the High Contracting Parties to name and appoint one of the aforesaid three Commissioners; and in order to prevent unnecessary delay, the two Governments shall at once proceed to take steps for establishing this Commission of Arbitration.
The map called Mitchell's Map, hitherto admitted to have regulated the joint and official proceeding of the framers of the Treaty of 1783, shall be considered as evidence mutually acknowledged by the Contracting Parties as bearing upon the question to be decided.
As soon as the Members of the Commission of Arbitration shall have been named and appointed, they shall meet at [Frankfort on the Maine ?]
. They shall, in the presence of each other, be sworn, impartially, and, to the best of their judgment, to examine and decide, according to the evidence laid before them, all matters which may be referred to them by the Governments of the United States and Great Britain, jointly. • They shall have power to adjourn, from time to time, and from place to place, and to appoint a secretary and clerks, who shall not be citizens of the United States or subjects of Great Britain.
The documents to be submitted to the Commission of Arbitration by the Governments of the United States and of Great Britain, shall be Reports made to those Governments by the Commissioners of Exploration and Survey, of points about which those Commissioners have differed, and of the points about which they have agreed, together with any observations which either Government may choose to make upon the statements and reports of the Commissioners of Exploration and Survey on the matters about which those Commissioners may have differed ; and if the Commission of Arbitration should need any further topographical information to enable them to decide any of the points so submitted to them, they shall apply to the two Governments, who shall thereupon direct the Commission of Exploration to supply them with such information, in order to its being transmitted by the said Governments to the Commission of Arbitration.
The decision of a majority of the Commission of Arbitration shall, upon being communicated to the two Governments signed and sealed by the Commissioners, be held by the American and British Governments to be final and binding as to the points which such decisions may determine.
The salaries of the said Commissioners of Exploration and Survey, to be appointed according to the preceding Article I., shall be defrayed by their respective Governments; but all other expences attending the Commission shall be defrayed in equal portions by the two High Contracting Parties.
In case of the death, resignation, or disability, from any cause, of any Commissioner, the Government by which he was appointed shall name a successor with the least possible delay; and each new Commissioner shall be bound to take the same oath or affirmation, and to perform the same duties as his predecessor.
The salaries and all expences of the Commission of Arbitration to be appointed according to the preceding Article IX., shall be defrayed in equal portions by the Governments of the United States and of Great Britain, upon accounts to be rendered periodically to each Government by the said Commission.
It being possible, and, if so, highly desirable, that a Conventional Line may · be agreed upon which will be satisfactory to all the parties in interest, and the necessity of a final umpirage of their conflicting claims be thereby superseded, it is with that view agreed by the immediate parties to this Convention, that it shall, be at the option of the State of Maine to appoint, in such manner as her Legislature shall direct, two Commissioners who shall be associated with the Board, of Commissioners of Exploration hereby established, for the purpose of making, receiving, discussing, and settling, in conjunction with the said Board, propositions for the establishment of a Conventional Line, upon the territory in dispute between the United States and Her Majesty's Colonies, but for no other purpose.
It is further provided, that if the Commissioners appointed under this Convention, shall be able, in conjunction with those appointed by the State of Maine, to agree on a line upon the territory hereinbefore described, which shall be satisfactory to the Governments of the United States and Great Britain, and also to the State of Maine, and her assent to the same be given in such manner as her Legislature shall direct, at any time before a final decision is made in the matter by the Umpires hereby created, that then and in such case the Governments of the United States and Her Britannic Majesty will carry such agreement into full effect, and solemnly and finally ratify the same.
• The present Convention shall be ratified, and the ratifications shall be exchanged in
, within a period of In witness whereof, the respective Plenipotentiaries have signed the same and have affixed thereto the seals of their arms. Done at Washington, the
, in the year of our Lord one thousand eight hundred and forty
Mr. Fox to Viscount Palmerston.—(Received September 18.) My Lord,
Washington, August 29, 1840. I FORWARD by the present packet a duplicate of my despatch, of the 15th of this month, in which I had the honour to inclose the copy of a second CounterDraft of Convention for the establishment of the North-Eastern Boundary Commissions, offered by the United States' Government in place of the British Draft of Convention transmitted to me in your Lordship's despatch, of the 30th of June; and the copy of a letter from Mr. Forsyth, dated the 13th of this month, communicating to me the said new American Counter-Draft, and con-. taining various observations upon the points of difference between the present proposals of the two Governments.
I now further inclose the copy of a letter which I addressed to Mr. Forsyth on the 17th instant, in reply to his communication of the 13th. I have in the reply declined entering into a full discussion of the articles of the new American Draft, until they shall have been submitted to the consideration of Her Majesty's Government."
. It will be seen that the present American Draft differs from the British Draft in the Preamble, and in Articles II., III., IV., VII., and X. ;, and that it contains two additional Articles, XVI. and, XVII., embracing new matter, and providing fór an entirely new object. I refer here, of course, to the Articles as numbered in the American Draft.
The new Preamble proposed by the United States' Government does not, in substance, materially differ from the Preamble of the British Draft: and it is far less objectionable than the Preamble of the former American Draft. But it begins by reciting the points at issue between the two countries from the Treaty of Ghent of 1814, instead of recurring to the original description of the Boundary in the Treaty of 1783, which original description it will be the business of the Commissioners' now to be appointed to reconcile with the natural face of the country if they' can. I am also surprised to find, upon referring to the Treaty of Ghent, that the text of the Vth Article of that Treaty, which the New American Preamble professes to quote, is incorrectly quoted The text is not actually altered, but it is curtailed in such manner as to draw attention more pointedly to the north-west angle of Nova Scotia, and to lead an unwary reader to the inference, that the north-western angle of Nova Scotia, so pointed out, is a known and acknow. ledged position. With regard, however, to the final wording of the Preamble, if the differences now existing cannot be reconciled, it will perhaps be sufficient to adopt a still shorter and less pointed description of the Boundary in dispute, recording merely," that the line of frontier between the two countries, according to the Treaty of 1783, has not yet been defined and ascertained to the satisfaction of both parties," or words to that effect. If, on the contrary, Her Majesty's Government do not object to the recital of the points at issue from the Treaty of Ghent, it is hardly to be supposed that the Government of the United States can find fault with having the Vth Article of that Treaty accurately and textually recited, instead of partially and.cursorily.
In the IInd Article it is proposed that the Commissioners shall meet at Boston, instead of at Quebec. This change has been proposed apparently with a view to second and support a more important and objectionable change, contained in the next succeeding Article, the Ilird, where the former proposal of beginning to mark the line of boundary from the eastern extremity, rather than from the western, is renewed. If the meeting of the Commissioners at Boston, rather than at Quebec, were insisted upon by the American Government merely as a point of etiquette, without any view of ulterior advantage, Her Majesty's Government might perhaps consent to the point being decided between the Com. missioners themselves by lot,
In the IIIrd Article there is repeated, in the first paragraph, the same curtailed recital from the text of the Treaty of Ghent, which I have before had occasion to observe upon in treating of the Preamble. It is next proposed, in the second paragraph of the IIIrd Article, with regard to the point of departure to be taken by the Commissioners (namely, whether they shall commence their labours, as provided for in the IIIrd Article of the British Draft, at the head of the Connecticut River, or whether, as is desired by the United States' Government, at the source of the River St. Croix,) that this important question shall be decided by the Commissioners themselves, if a majority of two out of three on both sides can agree; and if they cannot agree, that it shall then be decided by lot. From the observations upon this point which are contained in Mr. Forsyth's letter to me of the 13th instant, as well as from what he has stated to me verbally, I am inclined to think that it will be very difficult, if not impracticable, to bring the United States' Government to a nearer approach to the British proposal than what is now offered, namely, to have the point decided by lot. It might perhaps be proposed withi advantage, that the preliminary question now raised, namely, the point of departure of the Commissioners of Survey, should be decided, not by lot, but by reference to the Commissioners of Arbitration, if those Commissioners be named and selected before the Commissioners of Survey commence their labours. In. whichever way the question may be decided, provision is equally made in the IVth