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TREATY OF GHENT OF 1814 WITH GREAT BRITAIN.
Little settled by Jay's treaty—Mr. King, minister to England-Made no treaty-Succeeded by Mr. Monroe-Proposes a convention to Lord Hawkesbury-Rule of '56-Account of it-Injurious to American commerce-Special mission of Messrs. Monroe and Pinkney— Convention with Lords Holland and Auckland-Most favourable ever made-President rejects it without consulting Senate-Impressment-Account of it-Opinions of Foster, Mansfield and Chatham -Convention with Lord St. Vincent—Chesapeake-England offered reparation-Refused to consider the affair in connexion with other topics in discussion-Mr. Rose-Mission ineffectual-Orders in council-Great sensation-Erskine arrangement-UnsuccessfulErskine withdrawn-Mr. Jackson-His correspondence with government-Dismissed-England expresses no mark of displeasure-Antedated decree-England refuses to repeal orders-Declaration of 1812-War-Remarks on neutrality-Mediation of Russia-Not successful-Peace of Ghent-No disputed point settled-PeacePolicy of America-War of 1812, good effect on national character.
We shall give, in this chapter, an account of the different negotiations that led to the war of 1812 with Great Britain, We propose and finally terminated in the peace of Ghent.
to divide this period into two parts;-the first relating to events immediately preceding the orders in council of 1807, and the other, comprehending the portion of time from that event to the peace above mentioned.
We have remarked in a preceding chapter that the treaty of 1794 in reality settled but few of the important points in discussion. If Europe had relapsed into its original condition of peace and quietness, this circumstance would have presented itself to the mind with little relief; but subsequent events gave to those questions an importance, no one could have anticipated. As the power of France increased on the land, that of England seemed, with corresponding industry and activity, to magnify itself on the ocean ;-fresh conquests led to new blockades, and retaliation became a pretext for renewed and aggravated outrages on neutral rights. They were repeated and enforced every year with increased severity and an alarming augmentation of power, till a place of refuge or safety could be found for the neutral, neither on the ocean, nor in any part of the continent of Europe. The peace, or rather truce of Amiens, afforded a momentary respite, but with that slight exception, it must be considered that the two belligerents actually waged a maritime war upon America from the year 1792 to 1812. Rufus King, of New-York, was appointed in May '96 minister plenipotentiary to the court of St. James, and remained till 1803, in that country.* He discussed in a full and satisfactory manner the principal provisions of maritime
* We shall give in this note a continuation, from the last chapter, of the hostile acts of Great Britain :
Horatio Nelson declared Cadiz to be in a state of
"1799, March 22. All the ports of Holland declared in a state of rigid blockade.
1799, Nov. 27.
The blockade of March suspended.
1803, June 24. Instructions issued, not to interrupt the direct trade between neutrals and the colonies of enemies, unless, upon the outward passage, contraband articles had been furnished by the neutrals.
"1804, January 5. Certain ports of Martinique and Guadaloupe declared in blockade. The siege of Curacoa converted into blockade. "1804, August 9. A rigorous blockade established at the entrances of the ports of Fecamp, St. Valiery, and other places on the French coast."