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The Editor of THE DUBLIN UNIVERSITY MAGAZINE begs to notify that he will not undertake to return, or to be accountable for, any manuscripts forwarded to him for perusal.
On the 15th of last month it was that parpose. I consequently encloso here. announced in London by magnetic with the passport given in such cases. telegraph, that the mail steamer I avail myself of this opportunity to renew Canada had arrived in the Mersey
to you, sir, the assurance of my respectful
consideration. from New York, bringing a number
W. L. MARcy. of passengers, amongst whom was Mr. John Fiennes Crampton, late
John F. Crampton, Esq., &c. Envoy Extraordinary and Minister
We learn, then, from these des Plenipotentiary of Her Majesty with patches, and from the arrival of Mr. the United States of America.
Crampton in England, that the minIn the journal which made this ister of Her Britannic Majesty with announcement appeared two des- the United States has been dismissed patches, which explained the cause from that country, as “unfit for the of Mr. Crampton's absence from the position he held,' and unworthy of scene of his mission, and his presence that confidence and consideration on British ground. Both were writ- which the representative of a friendly ten by Mr. Marcy, the American
power ought to command with the secretary of state-one to Mr. Dallas,
government to which he is accredited. the American minister in London ; It may not be thought amiss, on the other to Mr. Crampton himself. the occurrence of so strange and The latter was as follows:
startling an event, to enter upon a brief summary of the circumstances
which have led to this result. The Department of State, Washington, public mind, we are aware, has been
May 28th, 1856. for some time much occupied with SIR,_ The President of the United States
the question; and the public journals has directed me to announce to you the de
have entered, over and over again, termination to discontinue further intercourse into the details, presenting the matter with you as her Majesty's representative to under every conceivable aspect: still, the government of the United States. The notwithstanding all this—or rather, reasons which have compelled him to take because a constant and perplexing this step at this time have been communicated iteration of details may possibly have to your government.
interfered with and prevented a just I avail myself of this occasion to add that
view of the whole question, we are due attention will be cheerfully given to any communications addressed to this department
disposed to hope that we may supply
a want at this moment felt by some from her Majesty's government affecting the relations between Great Britain and the
of our readers, by giving, though at United States, which may be forwarded to
the risk of repetition, from authentic this government through any other channel. sources, and as plainly as we can, an Should it be your pleasure to retire from
historical resume of the double conthe United States, the President directs me troversy which has of late been ento furnish you with the usual facilities for gaging the attention and taxing the
VOL. XLVIII.-NQ. CCLXXXIII.
MB. MARCY TO MR. CRAMPTOX.
diplomatic intelligence of the two go- poration of new states into the vernments.
American Union, a western sea-board It is scarcely necessary to say that was obtained; and when a dependeney of the twofold difficulty in question, of Great Britain, almost equal to a one part relates to our possessions continent, and lying beyond the barand rights in Central America, and rier of the western world, had disthe other to the attempt made during closed a sudden store of wealth and the late war to procure recruits from invited the enterprize and cupidity of amongst the inhabitants of the United Englishmen to its shores, what had States. Upon each of these questions -been until then deemed a worthless a “ Blue Book” has been published. pass between the northern and southThe controversies, which raged for ern empires of America rose at once some time simultaneously, are thus into importance, as forming the kept separate, though their separa- line of communication between the tion in the parliamentary documents civilization of the two great dividoes not so completely isolate them sions of the British family and the from each other, as not to render a distant treasures of the Pacific. Cencomparison valuable for the purpose tral America, for the first time, of illustrating the characters of the became the centre of American inparties and the real objects they had terests. Every eye was turned upon in view. We propose to take up the her ; she began to be the focus of the Central American question first, both because it arose considerably earlier As a highway, use was made of her than the other, and because the lat- at once.
In default of other means ter will be dealt with more naturally of transit, men scrambled over her in connection with the concluding por- mountains, and forded or swam her tion of the present paper.
lakes and rivers, in order to get the Up to the period at which the dis- shortest way across from sea to sea. covery of gold in California took
This spontaneous selection of a route place, those vast regions of America pointed out its importance. The inwhich lie between Mexico on the terests of the world seemed to denorth, and New Granada on the mand that it should be opened up. south, had been little valued and Such was the state of things which very imperfectly explored. The an- originated the CLAYTON-BULWER tiquarian researches of Mr. Stephens, TREATY. indeed, had invested portions of theni The history of this treaty is shortly with a mysterious interest; but the as follows. In the year 1849 a prointerest which utility alone can pro- posal was discussed between the mi. duce had not been felt-it was not nisters of the two governments, Great any one's business to explore them. Britain and America, for guaranteeThis whole region had been originallying the safety of a company of capicolonized by Spain; and remained talists, to whom a charter should be under the dominion of that country granted by the republic of Nicarauntil the year 1821, when the pro- gua for the execution and mainvinces of which it was composed tenance of a ship-canal across a certhrew off the Spanish yoke, and con- tain portion of Central America, stituted themselves into a republic, principally if not altogether lying which they named Central America. within the territory of that state. In a few years this republic fell to This canal was to pass from the pieces, and was reformed into separate Caribbean Sea at San Juan del Norte states, which took their divisions in westward, following the course of the main from the boundaries of the the river San Juan until it reached old provinces. These republics are Lake Nicaragua, whence it was to (beginning from thenorth) Guatemala, pass into Lake Managua, having its Honduras, San Salvador, Nicaragua, outlet either at the port of Realejo and Costa Rica. From an early period or at the Bay of Fonseca on the England had formed settlements on Pacific. This vast undertaking had the eastern shores of this region already been taken up by a company undisputed, whatever had been the of capitalists, and was deemed of original title to them-by the repub- sufficient importance to the inlics they bordered on.
terests of both nations to call for As soon, however, as by the incor- their formal protection, to guarantee
which was accordingly, as we have said, the object of the proposed convention. Sir Henry Lytton Bulwer was at that time the British Minister at Washington, with Mr. Crampton attached to the Legation; and Mr. Clayton was the Secretary of State of the United States. Numerous communications took place, both between these parties and between Mr. Abbott Lawrence, the American Minister in London, and Lord Palmerston, then Minister for Foreign Affairs. The points under discussion principally related to a claim by the British of a protectorate over the territory of the king—or, as he is sometimes termed, Chief of the Mosquito Indians, and to the occupation by the English, under a title derived from that nation, or tribe, of the town of San Juan del Norte, by them called Greytown, which commanded the eastern mouth of the proposed canal. A glance at a good map (such as that prefixed to the 1st volume of Squiers' "Nicaragua") will shew that the maintenance of either the one or the other claim by England might possibly have been fairly considered by America as giving her undue power over one of the outlets of the contemplated canal; for even the Mosquito protectorate would, according to her most recent pretensions, have embraced the north shore of the San Juan for a considerable part of its course. These points were assumed to be all that were likely to be in dispute at least they were all that concerned the subject-matter of the treaty; and as there was no intention or intimation of including in it any matter not immediately bearing upon its avowed object, nothing else brought under discussion. Incidentally, indeed, Mr. Lawrence informed Lord Palmerston that his government considered "that no great maritime nation ought to desire or be permitted to have an exclusive foothold on the Isthmus;" but this remark produced no comment, and led to no further discussion; and it may fairly be assumed that the intention of all parties was understood to be to deal in the proposed convention with the canal question, and with the canal question only. That this was the meaning of both the negociators before the treaty was ratified, is shewn by the words Sir Henry Bulwer uses
inwriting to Lord Pa Imerston on the 18th of February, 1850:-"Both of us (Mr. Clayton and myself) deemed that at the present time the treaty in question did all that was necessary by settling a basis on which the canal could be constructed and protected."
England having at last intimated her willingness to satisfy America on the points she had raised, namely, as to the Mosquito protectorate and the occupancy of Greytown, the project of a convention was drawn up. This, after much discussion and some modification, was finally embodied in formal Articles, which were signed by Sir Henry Bulwer on the part of England, and by Mr. Clayton on that of America, on the 19th day of April, 1850, both parties being fully empowered by their respective governments for the purpose.
Of this convention it will be necessary to quote one sentence, forming part of Árticle I. It runs thus:-
The Governments of Great Britain and the United States hereby declare that neither the one nor the other will ever obtain or maintain for itself any exclusive control over the said Ship-Canal; agreeing that neither will ever erect or maintain any fortifications commanding the same, or in the vicinity thereof, or occupy, or fortify, or colonize, or assume or exercise any dominion over Nicaragua, Costa Rica, the Mosquito Coast, or any part of Central America.
It seems to have struck Lord Palmerston at the last moment, just as he was sending out the ratification of the Treaty, that some ambiguity might possibly lurk under the words. They might be wrested so as to include the British Honduras, and be interpreted retrospectively, so as to involve a relinquishment by England of that settlement and its dependencies. Accordingly, on the 8th of June, he directed Sir Henry Bulwer to make a formal declaration, on the exchange of ratifications, to the effect that her Majesty's government did not understand the engagements of the convention as applying to her Majesty's settlement at Honduras, or to its dependencies. Sir Henry Bulwer did so; which drew from Mr. Clayton, on the 4th of July, the following letter:
Department of State, Washington,
July 4, 1850.
I have received the declaration you were
instructed by your Gorernment to make to occupy “any part of Central Ameme respecting Honduras and its dependencies, rica," therefore she was to give up the a copy of which is herewith subjoined. territories in which she was settled. The language of Article I. of the Conven
She was not to “colonize," so she was tion concluded on the 19th day of April last,
to abandon the islands of Ruatan, between the United States and Great Britain,
Bonacca, and others, which, under describing the country not to be occupied, &c., by either of the parties, was, as you
the idea that they were dependencies know, twice approved by your Government,
of Honduras, she had recently constiand it was neither understood by them, nor
tuted into a separate colony. She by either of us (the negotiators), to include was not to protect the Mosquito the British Settlement in Honduras, com. coast, for that was to exercise domimonly called British Honduras, as distinct nion in contravention of the treaty. from the State of Honduras, nor the small In other words, for the chance of a islands in the neighbourhood of that Settle- canal across the Isthmus, she was to ment, which may be known as its dependen- evacuate the whole of what had been cies. To this Settlement and these islauds
hitherto hers in that part of the world. the Trcaty we have negotiated was not
The arguments on the American side intended by either of us to apply. The title to them it is now, and has been my intention
professed to be grounded on the throughout the whole negotiation, to leave,
wording of the instrument itself, and as the Treaty leaves it, without denying,
on the reason of the thing. As to affirming, or in any way meddling with the
the first, they asserted that " Central same, just as it stood previously.
America” was a geographical term, inThe Chairman of the Committee on cluding the whole of the tract we Foreign Relations of the Senate, the Hon. have described, between Mexico and William R. King, informs nie that “tho New Granada. Let us examine this Senate perfectly understood that the Treaty assertion. In point of fact, the term did not include British Honduras.” It was
Central America, which is modern, intended to apply to and does include all the
never having been heard of before Central American States of Guatemala, Hon.
1821, was applied originally as a poliduras, San Salvador, Nicaragua, and Costa Rica, with their just limits and proper de
tical designation, and described a rependencies.
public exclusive of the British pos
sessions in its neighbourhood, to Upon receiving this letter, Sir which no claim whatever was set Henry Bulwer at once exchanged the up; and the term was made use of ratifications; and the Treaty was con- in a geographical sense only by cluded.
geographers, being found conveniNow it was scarcely possible to ently and appropriately to describe anticipate that out of words thus pen- the region we have indicated, lying ned, and thus explained, there should between those Northern and Southern be extracted the grounds of a claim limits. We challenge the supporters upon England for a cession and of the American interpretation of the abandonment of those valuable pos- Clayton-Bulwer Treaty to adduce a sessions on the coast of Central Ame- single instance in which the term rica, for which no advantage contem- “ Central America” has been emplated by the treaty could compen- ployed in any political transaction, sate hor, and which therefore could with the meaning sought to be atnot possibly have been voluntarily re- tached to it in this : and on the other linquished by her. Yet the treaty had hand, the instances are numerous in not been three years in existence, when which the designation has been formcertain individuals in the American Se- ally recognized as applying to the old nate, amongst whom was General Cass, republic of that name, and subsebegan to suggest an interpretation of quently to the cluster of states formed theirown, regardless of that of the Con- out of its fragments, and of which tracting Parties as signified by the for- the boundaries, unsettled though they mal statements of their ministers, and be, do not ass:ime to include the Brigrounded on the ambiguous meaning tish settlements. But the American of one term employed therein interpretation, however forced, would namely, Central America.
have been inoperative, had not a fururged in the first place, that the ther violence been done to the lanwording was clear--England was guage of the Treaty. It was necessary, “not to occupy,” therefore she was to
according to the views of General withdraw from her occupation--not to Cass and his friends, not only to