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RECOGNITION AND SLAVERY.
HON. ROBERT J. WALKER, M.A.
COUNSELLOR AT LAW IN THE SUPREME COURT OF THE UNITED STATES,
LATE LAW REP. MI., SENATOR OF THE UNITED STATES,
GOVERNOR OF KANSAS, ETC. ETC.
REPUDIATION, RECOGNITION, AND SLAVERY.
London, 10, Half Moon Street, Piccadilly,
July 1st, 1863. Soon after my arrival in London from New York, my attention was called, by some English, as well as American friends, to an article which had appeared more than a month previously in the London “ Times” of the 23rd of March last. In the Money Article of that date, is the following letter from the Hon. John Slidell, the Minister of Jefferson Davis at Paris. My dear Sir,
I have yours of yesterday. I am inclined to think the people of London confound Mr. Reuben Davis, whom I have always understood to have taken the lead on the question of repudiation, with President Jefferson Davis. I am not aware that the latter was in any way identified with that question. I am very confident that it was not agitated during his canvass for Governor, or during his administration. The Union bank bonds were issued in direct violation of an express constitutional provision. There is a wide difference between these bonds, and those of the Planters' bank, for the repudiation of which, neither excuse nor palliation can be offered. I feel confident that Jefferson Davis never approved or justified that repudiation. What may have been his private opinions of the refusal to consider the State of Mississippi bound to provide for the payment of the Union bank bonds, I do not know.
It is due to the Editor of the Times" here to state, that, in his money article of the 23rd March last, he refers to the controversy of that press
with Jefferson Davis on that question, in 1849, and, as regards the suggestion of Mr. Slidell, that it might have been Reuben Davis who was the repudiator in 1849, instead of Jefferson Davis, the Editor remarked, “it is to be feared that the proof in the other direction is too strong.”
Indeed, the Editor might well be astonished at the supposition, that Jefferson Davis, who subscribed the repudiation letter in question of the 25th May, 1849, as well as a still stronger communication of the 29th August, 1849, should have been confounded, during a period of near fourteen years, by the press of Europe and America, with Reuben Davis, and that the supposed mistake should just now be discovered, especially as Reuben Davis never was a Senator of the United States from Mississippi, or from any
I was asked if it really was Reuben or Jefferson Davis who was the author of the letter in question advocating the repudiation of the Union bank bonds of Mississippi, their recollection being, that it was the latter. I said that the repudiation letter in question of the 25 May, 1849, was subscribed and published at its date in the “Washington Union,” by Jefferson Davis as a Senator of the United States from Mississippi, which position he then held, that he was personally well known to me for nearly a fourth of a century, as was also Reuben Davis, and that the latter never had been a Senator of the