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Falkland Islands : - Grant to Governor Vernet-Capture of Amer
ican Sealers — Lexington sent for their Protection - Settlement at Falkland Islands broken up — Piratica' attuck of Malays on Ship Friendship — Frigate Potomac despatched to punish themTown and Forts destroyed - Claims upon Naples -- An Envoy appointed to demand satisfaction - Demonsiration of Naval Force-Claims adjusted by Treaty.–Negotiation with MexicoTreaty concerning Limits Treaty of Commerce and Navigation.
The management of the rela- between the United States and tions between the United States Buenos Ayres. and other powers did not mani- Lying amid the stormy seas fest the same want of character surrounding Cape Horn, and aland capacity, that characterized most within the antartic circle, the negotiations with the British they had been long deserted by government.
man, and afforded only a shelter Towards all other nations the to the seals, which were there tone of the government was mod- found in great abundance. In erate but firm, and the honor and the adventurous voyages of the interest of the country were
fisherinen of the eastern states, maintained in a manner indica- who left no sea unvexed with tive both of spirit and ability. their enterprise, these islands conAmong the questions, that arose sequently had not been overlookduring the year was one relating ed. The number of vessels reto the Falkland Islands, so often sorting there, induced the governthe fruitsul source of controversy ment of Buenos Ayres to supbetween civilized nations.
pose the islands to be valuable as These islands .which, in the possessions ; and in 1829 measdeserts of the ocean, had almost ures were taken, upon the appliescaped human notice, and which cation of a foreigner by the name if they had not happened to make of Don Louis Vernet, to assert its a seamark, had perhaps never title. A lease was given to him had a name;' after having brought of the exclusive right of fishing England and Spain to the verge at those islands and the coast of war, as if they could never be adjacent to Cape Horn, and he mentioned except as the cause of was at the same time appointed discord, now produced a collision Governor of Falkland Islands. After various attempts to induce government of 1830, would subthe sealers to take out licenses to mit as tamely to depredations and fish under his authority, he began insults as that of 1806. He acto enforce his monopoly by cap- cordingly commenced asserting turing three American vessels, his title, by arresting the captains taking care however not to molest and boats' crews of the American the English vessels, that were on fisherman while on shore, unsusthe same fishing ground. It is picious of danger, and then deswell known to all familiar with patching an armed force to take the history of the last century, possession of the vessels and that the title of Spain to these bring them into port. One of islands has always been disputed. these, the Superior, after taking After the controversy between out her cargo, he sent into the England and Spain had been ad- Pacific upon a sealing voyage; justed, by putting the former in the Harriet was sent to Buenos possession, the British govern- Ayres for condemnation; and the ment deliberately
deliberately abandoned third, the Breakwater, escaped them in 1774, leaving there the from her captors and arrived in usual emblems of sovereignty.
the United States. In this deserted condition they These outrages were not sufremained, the fishery being open fered to pass unpunished. The to the whole world; until Bue- President with a promptitude, nos Ayres lately undertook to which has always characterized claim possession as succeeding to bis movements, whenever it was the title of Spain. How that re- necessary to act in vindication of public entitled itself to that prerog- the rights of the nation against ative of the Spanish crown and foreign aggression, immediately became as it were its residuary despatched a competent force to legatee instead of Chili, Para- protect our sealers in the neighguay, Colombia or the Banda borhood of Cape Horn. Part Oriental, it would be difficult to of the crew of the Superior havtell ; and even if it were so, less of ing been left on Staten Island, on arrogance would have been more a sealing expedition, and Goverbecoming in asserting a claim, nor Vernet having by the capture which had been once before suc- of their vessel deprived them of cessfully resisted by England, and the means of departure, Captain which had not been subsequently Duncan sailed in the ship of war strengthened by the coinplete Lexington from Buenos Ayres abandonment of the islands by all for their relief. parties, until the enterprise of our On bis arrival December (28th, citizens had shown that even the 1831,) at the Falkland Islands, he ultima thule of the Southern took the necessary measures to Ocean could be made to minister break up the establishment of to the wants of the human race. Governor Vernet by spiking the
Moderation did not however cannon ; depriving those who suit Don L. Vernet, who was gov- were concerned in the capture of erned solely by a spirit of cupid- the sealers of their arms; restority, and who thought the federal ing the captured property to its
owners; and transporting seven The next morning at an early of the most proininent actors to hour, a detachment of two hundred Buenos Ayres for trial.
and sixty men were despatched The nuisance was thus prompt- under Lieutenant Shubrick, to ly abated, and although the gov- storm the forts, which were five in ernment of Buenos Ayres pro- number. They landed undisfessed great indignation at the covered, and dividing their forces, unceremonious manner, in which they proceeded to attack the a settlement under the protection town. Upon approaching the of its flag had been treated ; a les- gate of the northernmost fort, the son (and not the first) had been sailors were fired upon, but they afforded it of the danger of lend- tore down the palisades, and ing that flag, as a cover to acts too soon drove the Malays from the nearly bordering upon piracy, to fort, leaving twelve dead upon
the be easily distinguished.
spot among whom was (Poona
Mahamei) one of the rajahs enChastisement equally prompt gaged in the capture of the and signal was inflicted on the Friendship. The other forts Malays of Quallah Battoo for a were carried in the same manner, píratical attack on the ship Friend- after a short resistance by the ship of Salem. These tribes, Malays, of whom between eighty who were always regarded as the and one hundred were killed, and pirates of the East, had frequently a larger nuniber wounded. The before captured American ves- town was then fired and the foris sels, trading on that coast, by sud- destroyed. The contest lasted den attacks on the crews.
nearly three hours, and the loss In this instance a large portion of the Americans was three killed of the crew of the Friendship was and ten wounded. massacred, and it was deemed This chastisement left a salunecessary to punish the offenders tary impression on the minds of in a summary manner.
these piratical tribes, and the The frigate Potomac, Captain neighboring rajahs sent deputaDownes, was accordingly ordered tions to Captain Downes assuring to proceed to Sumatra for that_bim of their friendly disposition purpose, with the second mate of towards the United States, and the Friendship on board to point expressing their desire to obtain out the offending tribe.
the friendship of the Americans. She arrived there the 5th of February, 1832, and being dis- Similar success attended the guised as a merchant vessel, a efforts of the executive 10 obtain boat was sent off as if for the redress from the government of purpose of trading with the Ma- Naples, for the sequestration and lays. Such strong indications of plunder of American property hostility were manifested, that it during the ephemeral reign of was not deemed prudent to land, Joachim Murat. These claims and after observing the situation of arose from the seizure between the harbor, forts, and town, they the years 1809 and 1812, of sevreturned to the ship.
eral vessels with their cargoes, all
belonging to the citizens of the Maryland was appointed minister United States, without any pre- at Naples, with the rank of tence of their having violated any Charge d'Affairs in October, 1831, law either municipal or national. and was directed to require an They had been invited into the explicit answer from the NeapolNeapolitan ports by the minister itan government. Knowing the of foreign affairs, and when en- effect, that a suitable demonstraticed in that manner into the tion of force would produce on power of Murat, they were seiz- that government, the vessels of ed under the Berlin and Milan war belonging to the United States decrees. The cargoes were sold then in the Mediterranean, were and the vessels also, (except some ordered to assemble in the harbor which were taken into the royal of Naples; leaving it to the imservice,) and the proceeds put into agination of the royal advisers, to the public Treasury. The prop- divine with what motive a powerer return for this violation of our ful Aleet was concentrated near national fag, after a suitable de- their capital at the critical momand of redress would have been ment, when a demand of redress reprisals or a bombardment of the for. spoliations upon American Neapolitan capital, but yielding to commerce was renewed for the the councils of timidity, no decis- third and last time. The ordinaive steps were taken by the ry objections, which had been beAmerican government to enforcefore urged against their allowance, these claims, until after the con- would no longer answer. Denclusion of the treaty, for the ad- mark and France had admitted justment of similar claims upon the validity of claims similarly France. An ill conceived at- situated against their respective tempt was indeed made at nego- governments; and treaties had tiation by Mr Pinckney in 1816, been concluded, by their stipulaas he was hurrying to St Peters- ting to pay specified sums as inburgh; but it was feebly followed demnities to the United States. up, and the American envoy was Naples was therefore obliged to diverted from his purpose by the choose between the admission of finesse of the Neapolitan Court, these claims, or the enmity of the and the mission proved a complete United States, whose fleet was abortion. A demand too was then in a situation to inflict ample made during the administration of vengeance on her capital, for the Mr Adams by Mr Appleton, who unatoned insult to the American was sent as agent to Naples for flag. that purpose, but it was not fol- With these considerations full lowed with any results.
in their minds, and the ominous After Mr Livingston became name of Nelson (a
name Secretary of State, he thought it fraught with recollections of bomadvisable to renew the negotiation barded capitals and exacted infor the adjustment of these claims, demnities) — at the end of each and arrangements were made to despatch, the Neapolitan ministers demand satisfaction in an impos- hesitated to assume the responsiing manner. John Nelson of bility of rejecting the demands of the American minister, and the This spirit displayed itself not negotiation progressed rapidly only in threats against the Amertowards a favorable conclusion. ican minister, but also in an unSome difficulty indeed occurred willingness to enter into any treaty as to the amount to be paid with the United States. the United States, and at one mo- The ratification of the treaty ment the negotiation seemed to adjusting the boundary line bebe at an end ; - the American tween the United States and Mexminister having demanded his ico, which had been agreed upon passport, and made his arrange- in 1828, was thus delayed for ments to go on board the fleet; several years after it had been but the Neapolitan cabinet finally signed by the plenipotentiaries of concluded to yield that point, and the parties. By that treaty the the negotiation was resumed, and same boundary was established, the sum of $ 1,720,000, or that was described in the treaty 2,115,00C ducats was inserted in between the United States and the treaty, as the indemnity to be Spain, concluded February 22, paid by Naples to the United 1819; but the difficulties above States for her spoliations upon alluded to, prevented its ratificaAmerican commerce, in nine tion. equal instalments with interest at In order to remove the obstafour per cent from the ratifica- cles arising from the unfounded tion of the treaty.
prejudices entertained against the
American minister, the President Equal success attended the ef- concluded to substitute one of forts of the administration in the inferior rank. Under his auspices negotiation with Mexico.
the treaty was ratified. For several years past, that A treaty of commerce and navrepublic had regarded the United igation was also concluded for States with great jealousy, which, eight years, and thence until one although unfounded, had never- of the parties should give one theless proved an insurmountable year's notice of its intention to obstacle to the conclusion of any terminate the same.
By this satisfactory treaty.
treaty, the commercial intercourse Two parties, originating in a between the two countries is masonic feud, had distracted the placed upon the same footing of Mexican capital for many years; liberality and reciprocity, that is and from the circumstance, that observed in all the commercial the American Minister had pro- treaties with the United States. cured the charter of one of the A better understanding was lodges from the United States, thus produced between this counhe was identified by the other try and Mexico, and an opportuparty with the Yorkinos, whose nity afforded to the people of that charter he had procured. A country to ascertain, by experilocal prejudice was thus excited ence, how groundless were their against him, which the agents of suspicions of the feeling and polGreat Britain were not unwilling icy of the American government to foster, with the view of pro- towards them. moting their own rival interests.