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Mr. Marsh to Mr. Seward.

(Extract.] No. 53.]


. Turin, October 20, 1862. Sir: The retirement of Mr. Thouvenel from the ministry, though generally regarded as very strong evidence of the settled hostility of the Emperor to the unity of Italy, has not produced so great a sense of disappointment in the Italian people as might have been expected from the sanguine character of their previous hopes of a speedy and satisfactory solution of the Roman question. The tone of La France which, in spite of all disclaimers, is here believed to derive its information from the Tuilleries, had prepared the Italian public for the fall of Thouvenel, and few now doubt that the dynastic ambition of the Emperor, the superstitions of the Empress, and, as many suppose, the resentment of the Rothschilds, have concurred in dictating the return of France to the policy of Villa Franca, which it must now be supposed it is the fixed determination of the Emperor to carry out.

It is, however, too late to obtain the assent of the people of Italy to any proposal of partition or confederation. The sense of nationality is as thoroughly developed and as consciously felt as in any European race; and though Naples and Sicily may probably for a time be lost to the house of Savoy, I think no man who knows the Italian people can question their resolution or their ultimate ability to accomplish at last that unity which, as a counterpoise to the too great weight of the French and Germanic elements in Europe, will be as great a blessing to the general interests of the continent as to themselves.

The overthrow of Garibaldi is a great temporary check to the spirit of progress, for it leaves the liberalists without a leader around whom to rally. The probability, I fear, is against his recovering from the wound in the foot; but even in case of his restoration, the failure of his late expedition will have greatly lessened the prestige of his name. I am, sir, your obedient servant,

GEORGE P. MARSH. Hon. WILLIAM H. SEWARD, Secretary of State.

Mr. Seward to Mr. Marsh.

No. 58.]


Washington, November 10, 1862. SIR: Your despatch of the 20th of October (No. 53) has been submitted to the President, and he authorizes me to communicate to you his thanks for the clear exposition it gives of Italian politics in the present interesting crisis.

It is easy to see that European interests and passions are beginning to engage some of that attention which during the last year European statesmen have so unprofitably for both continents bestowed upon the unhappy affairs of the American people. I am, sir, your obedient servant,

WILLIAM H. SEWARD. George P. Marsh, Esq., &c., 8c., fc.


Mr. Seward to Mr. Harvey.

No. 60.]


Washington, July 9, 1862. Sir: Your despatch of June 5 (No. 123) was received. I think the Portuguese government and nation are to be congratulated upon the solution of the educational question which the French Emperor has so quietly and promptly effected.

How much the old European nations suffer from the immobility of classes i and masses which this new nation needs! We could receive and employ all the conscientious teachers of Europe without fear of danger from their imputed heresies in politics or in religion. France, Belgium, and England are agitated and excited to make war against and destroy us by classes of persons thrown out of employment, who, if they should make their way here, would find abundant and harmless occupation, with large rewards. Indeed, some of them might become founders of States which would, at no distant day, become as great as those which are disordered by reason of their wants. Let us hope that the European mind may be sagacious enough to discern that the cure for all the social evils in both hemispheres is migration of surplus population to regions where population is deficient. If it does not like us of the United States, why should Spanish America be longer left to languish for want of the invigoration which European emigration would afford. I am, sir, your obedient servant,

WILLIAM H. SEWARD. James E. Harvey, Esq., &c., &c., &c., Lisbon. ,

Mr. Seward to Mr. Harvey.

No. 61.] ·


Washington, July 9, 1862. SIR: Your despatch of May 30 was duly received, and the information it gives us of the improving condition of public sentiment in Portugal is very gratifying

Three cardinal points in our military operations have been attained, namely: the establishment of the blockade, the deliverance of the Mississippi and its tributaries, and the restoration of internal and foreign trade upon these great channels of commerce, and the establishment of the national authority in the border States, as they are named, of Missouri, Kentucky, and Tennessee. We have been baffled in our present demonstration against Richmond. But we are renewing our armies and increasing our navy with a view to a speedy and complete termination of the war;.

Irresponsible persons in Europe seem to be persevering in their efforts to bring foreign nations into this conflict. I am not aware that anything more can be done to counteract their efforts than has already been done, unless it is to authorize all our representatives, as I certainly can with perfect justice instruct them to say, that at no time in the history of this country would any form of foreign intervention be more certain to encounter stern and determined resistance. The insurrection lives only on the hope of foreign aid. An attempt to give that aid would rapidly heal our dissensions and restore the unity of the American people. I am, sir, your obedient servant,

WILLIAM H. SEWARD. JAMES E. HARVEY, Esq., &c., &c., &c., Lisbon.

Mr. Seward to Mr. Harvey.

No. 63.]


Washington, August 4, 1862. Sır: Your despatch of June 29 has been received.

The erection of a monument in Lisbon to the memory of the immortal poet of Portugal was not merely an act of national justice and a proper manifestation of national pride. It illustrated the eclectic, conservative faculty of nations, by which they rescue and save whatever is great, good, useful, and humane from the wrecks of time, leaving what is worthless, vicious, or pernicious to pass into oblivion.

The incident seems doubtless the more pleasing to us because it occurs at this conjuncture when we are engaged in combatting, in its full development, a gigantic error which Portugal, in the age of Camoens, brought into this continent. I am, sir, your obedient servant,

WILLIAM H. SEWARD. JAMES E. HARVEY, Esq., &c., 8c., fr., Lisbon.

Mr. Seward to Mr. Harvey.

No. 77.]


Washington, October 13, 1862. Sir: Your despatch of September 16 (No. 155) has been submitted to the President. I am authorized to express his high satisfaction with the loyalty and zeal which pervade the paper, and to assure you that your suggestions concerning the conduct of the administration in the very important crisis which is upon us will receive the most deliberate consideration. I am, sir, your obedient servant,

WILLIAM H. SEWARD. JAMES E. HARVEY, Esq., &c., 8c., &c., Lisbon.

Mr. Harvey to Mr. Seward. No. 129.]


Lisbon, June 29, 1862. Sīr: In compliance with an invitation addressed to the diplomatic corps, I attended a ceremony yesterday at which the corner-stone of a monument to Camoens, the celebrated author of the Lusiad, and the great poet of Portugal, was laid.

His Majesty the King officiated on the occasion, assisted by his Majesty Don Fernando, the chief personages of the court, the chambers of peers and deputies, the municipal chambers, and other official bodies. Thousands of the people also voluntarily attested, by their presence and applause, interest in the event.

The whole spectacle was imposing and beautiful, and, under a bright and benignant sky, a grateful country, after a lapse of three centuries, rendered its homage to the genius of one who had already erected for himself a monument more enduring than brass. I am, sir, very respectfully, your obedient servant,


Secretary of State.

Mr. Harvey to Mr. Seward. No. 140.7


Lisbon, August 11, 1862. SIR: I have had the honor to receive your despatches Nos. 60 and 61, both dated the 9th of July.

It became my duty, after receiving full intelligence of the result of the first demonstration of the national army before Richmond, to state, in a formal manner, and in other ways, substantially the views set forth in your No. 61, for the purpose of correcting the erroneous opinions which had gained currency in official circles, and which were also gradually impressing the public mind here. I have reason to know that those representations produced effect in influential quarters where, it is proper to say, the great cause in which our government is now engaged has always been regarded with generous interest and with the friendship which is an integral part of the good relations existing between the two countries.

Portugal herself passed through a long and severe probation of civil war, and the public men who were actors in those eventful and trying periods cau neither be indifferent nor unsympathizing spectators of a struggle, the chief and, in fact, the only aim of which is to assert the authority of law and order, and to restore peace and prosperity to a people a portion of whom have been misled by designing and despotic demagogues into false and pernicious courses.

In all my official intercourse I have endeavored to preserve the idea intact, and to maintain it becomingly in practice, that our government, as a great political organization, is unchanged in any of its parts; that it is now what it has always been since entering into the family of nations; and that the disturbing elements which, for a year past, have deranged its accustomed order, are local and transitory events, to be remedied in our own way and at our own time, and with which foreign powers have no proper right to interfere. The assertion of this principle positively and decorously at the outset has served the purpose of preventing controversy and saved the necessity of discussions which, if encouraged, would be attended by no good result.

Having simplified my duty in its political aspects by this plain course, it has not been necessary for me to report fluctuations of opinion in regard to the question which, of all others, engrosses the interest, the anxiety, and the devotion of every true American citizen. Nor have I felt called upon to harass the department with elaborate essays on the changing phases of affairs at home, with speculations as to their issue, or with suggestions of supposed remedies which must naturally occur to these charged with the grave responsibility of administering the government at this critical juneture. The best patriots may honestly differ as to the policy which should be pursued towards the insurgent communities, arising out of a domestic relation wbich not only affects them but others also, with equal directness, which have loyally and faithfully observed their obligations under the Constitution; but they cannot differ at all in regard to the necessity of upholding the Union at any and at every cost. Birth, education, and peculiar habits of thought create such differences of opinion as have been referred to, bat they involve no necessary estrangement between the parties holding them, nor any departure from the main purpose which it is to be hoped animates both—the purpose of preserving the Union in its entire integrity. Our system of government is the wise result of compromise, and the men of this day who, in the excess of their zeal, seem to claim an exclusive inspiration, might learn from the example of the fathers of the republic, who gave us free institutions and the instruction of their sacrifices, wisdom, and virtues, that moderation is as much needed now to preserve, as it was in the early times to prepare, the noble work of which the American Constitution and the Union are the beneficent results. I am, sir, very respectfully, your obedient servant,


Secretary of State.

Mr. Harvey to Mr. Seward.

No. 141.]


Lisbon, August 13, 1862. Sir: Your "circular" despatch of the 14th of July, containing the copy of an important bill which the President had submitted to Congress, has been received and placed among the archives of this legation as a document expressing tbe views of the Executive upon a question of grave policy in connexion with the war.

The whole course of the President has been so frank, fair, and conciliatory, and so patriotically devoted to the great objects avowed in his inaugural address, that even those who may differ with him in regard to particular points of policy must see in this last proposition nothing more than a new effort in the same direction to terminate the strife which so unhappily disturbs the peace of the Union, and deranges its commerce and relations with other countries. I am, sir, very respectfully, your obedient servant,


Secretary of State.

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