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the stipulation, upon which the claim is founded, applied only to the ports of Louisiana, but the concessions to other nations, from which the claim originated, extended to all the ports of the Union. The demand is, therefore, broader than the stipulation upon which it rests. At any rate, taking the 8th article in its most literal and rigid sense, it is sufficient to say, that France is now on the footing of the most favoured nation in the ports of Louisiana. In other words, France possesses all the advantages and privileges, enjoys all the favours granted to any nation. If the vessels of England, the Netherlands, of Sweden and several of the Hans Towns are admitted on the same terms as American, shall it be said, the United States have granted favours to those vessels,-by no means; those vessels enjoy no favours, they exercise a right perfectly earned by conceding to American vessels similar privileges in their own ports. Reciprocity of duties is a bargain of which all nations can avail themselves. But the 8th article neither declares, nor can it be made to intimate, that France shall enjoy, as a free gift, that, which is granted to other nations, for a full equivalent. The amount of the demand is, therefore, in strict language, not to be treated as favourably, but more favourably than the nations France calls most favoured. To have ceded to France a perpetual privilege in the ports of Louisiana would have despoiled the United States, at least, of one portion of sovereignty,-the impossibility, hereafter, of making a commercial treaty with mutual advantages. The inalienable immunities of a foreign nation in our ports would, forever, have disabled the government from meeting all others on an equal footing; it is very little short, indeed, of a stipulation never to conclude a commercial convention with any other nation than France. Thus encumbered, the sovereignty is not full and perfect. And yet France professes in one arti cle of the treaty to cede the territory in full sovereignty, and in another to require that Louisiana shall be admitted as soon as possible into the family union ;-two arrangements entirely incompatible with the French construction of the 8th article. We have already shown that the sovereignty

is not full, and we need only refer again to the provision of the federal constitution, before quoted, to point out the impossibility of admitting Louisiana in the manner, either prescribed in that instrument or in the treaty of cession.

"That the Senate in 1803 did not formally object to the stipulations of these 7th and 8th articles must be ascribed to its never having entered into the imagination or conception of that body, that such a claim, as that now attempted to be raised from it by France, was either expressed in, or to be implied from them. Whether the special privileges, granted for twelve years to the ships of France and Spain in those ports, were compatible with the constitution of the United States, or with the other article of the treaty by which the inhabitants of the ceded territory were to be incorporated into the Union, and admitted, according to the principles of that constitution to the enjoyment of all the rights, advantages and immunities of citizens of the United States, might be and was a question to the Senate in deliberating upon the treaty. It was a question of construction upon a clause of the constitution, and that construction prevailed, with which the terms of the treaty were reconcilable to it, and to themselves. But whether the claim, now advanced by France, is reconcilable with the constitution of the United States is no question of construction or of impliction. It is directly repugnant to the express provision that the regulations of commerce and revenue in the ports of all the States of the Union shall be the same.

"The admission of the State of Louisiana, in the year 1812 on an equal footing with the original States in all respects whatsoever, does not impair the force of this reasoning. Although the admission of French and Spanish vessels into their ports for a short remnant of time upon different regulations of commerce and revenue, from those prescribed in the ports of all the other States in the Union, gave them a preference, not sanctioned by the constitution, and upon which the other States might, had they thought fit, delayed the act of admission, until the expiration of the twelve years, yet, as this was a condition, of which the other States might waive the benefit, for the sake of admitting Louisiana, sooner, even, than rigorous obligation would have required, to the full enjoyment of all the rights of American citizens, this consent of the only interested party, to anticipate the maturity of the adopted

child of the Union, can be considered in no other light, than a friendly grant in advance of that, which, in the lapse of three short years, might have been claimed as of undeniable right”- "if the admission of a part of those inhabitants did, in fact, by a short time precede the termination of the period, subject to the exclusive privileges of French and Spanish vessels in their ports, although the sentiment, cited by the Baron de Neuville be perfectly correct, that the constitution ought not to be violated for a single day, as no question appears to have arisen at the time of the admission of the State upon the application of this article, and as a privilege of French and Spanish vessels was never, in fact, denied them, during the term for which, they were entitled, by the article, to claim it, whatever transient and inadvertent departure, in favour of the inhabitants of Louisiana from the principle of the constitution, may have occurred, is, as the Baron de Neuville observes, a question of internal administration in this government, from which France has received no wrong, and of which, therefore, she can have no motive to complain.

"For the term of twelve years, therefore, from the time specified in the treaty, France and Spain enjoyed, by virtue of the seventh article, special favours and privileges in the ports of Louisi ana. But it was not certain at the time, when the treaty was concluded, that the inhabitants could, within twelve, or twenty, or even fifty years, according to the principles of the federal constitution, be entitled to claim admission into the Union as a State. After the expiration of the twelve years there might be an indefinite interval of time, during which, the special favours, conceded to France and Spain in the seventh article, might be transferred to other nations, and the eighth article was obviously intended to avert that contingency, by stipulating that, after the twelve years of special favour in the ports of Louisiana, the vessels of France should be on the footing of the most favoured nations in the ports aforementioned,-importing, by the proper meaning of the terms and without any ambiguous inferences of specialties from generalities"—"that no special favour in the ports of Louisiana should, after the twelve years, ever be conceded to any other nation to the exclusion of France. This is the plain and obvious meaning of the article ;-the only meaning, deducible from its letter, the only meaning, traceable to the intention of the par

ties, by its immediate connexion with the special and exclusive privilege of the article immediately preceding it, and of which it is the natural complement."

The last correspondence in regard to the 8th article took place in 1824,-our government had declined the preceding year to couple this discussion with the claims of American citizens, being elements, that could, by no means, enter into the same negotiation, but had expressed an entire willingness to proceed on a separate examination of the subject. This was declined by France. Having now completed an account of the negotiations with that country, with the exception of the subject of the claims, which we have reserved for a separate chapter, we have, in this place, only to remark, that, in February 1815, Albert Gallatin of Pennsylvania succeeded Mr. Crawford at that court, and the Baron de Mareuil, M. de Neuville in this country, both envoys extraordinary and ministers plenipotentiary. At present, France has only a chargé in the U. States, the Count de Menou, but our own government is represented there by a minister with full powers, James Brown of Louisiana, appointed in 1824.



Very perplexing though important subject-Difficulty began in 1778— French in 1793 captured American vessels-First class of claimsEmbargo at Bordeaux-Convention of 1800--Claims of two governments respectively renounced-United States responsible to their own citizens-Convention of 1803-Second class of claims-French credit very bad-Convention of 1803 defective on subject of claims-Livingston instructed to negotiate an additional one—. France declinesClaims amount to from 8 to 11,000,000 dollars-Continental system -Third class - History of those claims-French government have never answered statement of American government-Paid every body in Europe-Refuse even to liquidate-Seek to couple them with business of Louisiana-Nothing in fact done since 1816-Naples-Pinkney sent to that court in 1816-Discusses the claim with the Marquess di Circello-Long letter-Vindicating the principle of the demandCircello refuses the application-Denies that Naples is responsible— No other European government gone so far-Nothing more done.


THIS topic is exceedingly complicated and perplexing;— for its origin we must look back to the first treaty of 1778 with France;-the two succeeding conventions, containing express and, apparently, precise stipulations on the subject, have only added to the confusion and difficulty. And as the government (for reasons, which do not appear) has but lately disclosed the correspondence in relation to the claims, their history has for a long time remained unknown; nor is their amount even now ascertained. Still, a careful examination of this business is important and necessary, not only on account of the property, unjustly and for so long a time withheld, but it is the best illustration, we have, how little the condition of the world and the progress of this country were anticipated by the authors of the first European treaty ;

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