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thought it proper, and have, therefore, taken the liberty, to make this Communication directly to you. We have the honour to be,
J. D. HENLEY, Commanding Naval Forces of Amelia Island.
JAS. BANKHEAD, Major Ist Battalion Artillery, Southern Division, The Hon. James Monroe. Com. U, S. Troops on Amelia Island.
(7.)-Don Vicente Pazos to the Secretary of State.—(Translation.)
Washington, 8th January, 1818. Don Vicente Pazos, Commissioner of the Authorities lately established at Amelia Island, in the Province of the Floridas, has the honor to salute the Secretary of State, and to request him to have the goodness to lay the enclosed Papers before the President of The United States, and also to inform him of the Resolution that may be taken on the subject. The Hon. J. Q. Adams.
(8.)-General Aury to the President.--(Translation.)
Head Quarters, Fernandina, Most EXCELLENT SIR, 23rd Dec. 1817, and 8th of Independence.
On the 23d instant, I received a Communication from Commodore J. D. Henley, and Major J. Bankhead, commanding the Naval and Military Forces of The United States, informing me, that agreeably to the Orders of their Government, they were, without loss of time, to occupy the Island of Amelia, and the Harbor of Fervandina.
Being convinced, that resistance with the inferior Force under my command, would only be attended with the loss of many worthy Republicans, on both sides, I considered it my duty to sacrifice every consideration to this. I, therefore, answered the said Commanders, on the same day, that I should make no opposition; and on this day, the 23rd, the Mexican Flag was struck, and the Flag of The United States hoisted.
In consequence of this event, no less unpleasing than unexpected, and in order that the Government of The United States may be correctly informed of the grounds, on which this part of East Florida was dismembered from the Dominions of the King of Spain, by the arms of the Independent States of South America, I have appointed Citizen Don Vicente Pazos, to undertake the said duty, and at the same time to secure and demand reparation for, and place on a safe and sure footing, the injured rights of the said States. Of all which I have the honor to inform your Excellency.
God preserve you many years ! The Hon. James Monroe.
(9.)-Don Vicente Pazos to the President.-(Translation.)
Washington, 7th February, 1818. Don Vicente Pazos, commissioned by Don Luis de Aury, Captain in the Navy of the Independent States of Mexico and New Granada, Political and Military Chief of the Island of Amelia, and General in Chief of the Sea and Land Forces, destined to expel the Authorities of the King of Spain, from the Province of the Floridas, addresses the Chief Magistrate of the Republic of North America, to explain the grounds, on which that Island was taken possession of by the arms of the Independent Governments of South America; and to demand reparation for the violation of the Rights of the New Republics, by a Neutral Nation; and has the honor to offer the following ex. planation to his Excellency James Monroe, President of the United States of America, to wit:
That the Island of Amelia having been captured and occupied by force of arms, by the Forces of the Independent Repablics of South America, agreeably to the usages of Nations in a state of War, and consequently, dismembered from the Spanish Monarchy, a necessity has arisen to lay before bis Excellency, the violation of the rights of those Republics, to declare the injuries they have sustained, and to demand reparation. But, at the saine time, he has the satisfaction to assure his Excellency, that he has received very positive Orders, to testify the most profound respect for the great American Nation, and the Chief who so worthily presides over it. Penetrated with these sentiments, on commencing the execution of my Commission, I feel myself greatly embarrassed by the unfortunate circumstances which have taken place in that Island, the fatal consequences of which cannot fail to have a powerful influence on the New States in their present vicissitudes, and absolutely to paralyze the emancipation of the Floridas, still occupied by the Authorities of the King of Spain.
It is also my duty to express to your Excellency, the admiration and veneration felt by the Patriots of South America, for the Government of The United States, and their high respect for that illustrious People, who so nobly prepared, and is still preparing the way for the emancipation and the Liberties of the New World. Impressed and familiarized as they are with these ideas, they cannot fail to be sensibly affected by these unfortunate events, it being, in truth, impossible to recollect them, without great concern : nothing, however, shall influence my expressions, in stating the differences between People, who are brethren, being convinced that they are united by bonds, which nature itself has formed, and that these fraternal relations cannot but carry The United States to the highest pitch of glory and prosperity.
There are but few Persons, most Excellent Sir, who are ignorant of the unfortunate situation of the People of South America, during
the period they were subject to the Dominion of Spain, which debarred them of all communication with Foreign Nations. despotic and suspicious Government, jealous of every kind of knowledge and information, they were kept in the darkest ignorance, and by the rapacity of the sabaltern Agents sent from Spain, subjected with impunity to every degree of oppression, injustice, and vexation.
These sufferings, aggravated by the vicissitudes of the Spanish Monarchy in Europe, combined with the contempt for, and scandalous privation of the enjoyment and possession of their natural rights, gave rise in 1810, to their re-assumption, after being denied and usurped by their Tyrants during 3 Centuries; their Governments were immediately framed upon popular principles; and although this great work partook of the inconveniences common to all Revolutions, and to the sanguinary system adopted by the Spanish Government with a view to paralyze it, the efforts of the Patriots triumpbed, and their power and authority were established. By this political transformation, the People were inspired with vigor and enthusiasm, and the spirit of Independeuce which secured their general Liberty, was rapidly spread throughout the whole of the American Continent, that is in Mexico and Guatemala, New Granada and Venezuela, in Rio de la Plata and Chile, and in different parts of the Viceroyalty of Lima.
The population of the New Republic amounts to near 18,000,000 of souls, and their territory extends from Bahia de San Francisco, in 34° north latidude, to Cape Horn, forming an extent of 88° of latilude, and including Countries of every climate-the torrid and temperate zones—the best climes producing the most precious and richest fruits, superior in quality and variety to those of all other parts of the World. Its Coasts are washed on one side by the great Pacific Ocean, and on the other by the Atlantic, forming an Isthmus, where the waters of both seas mingle, by means of rivers easily rendered navigable. A Country, in fine, intersected and fertilized by the greatest rivers in the World, that may be navigated for hundreds of miles,
Countries so favored, and abounding with a numerous population, could no longer remain under the Spanish yoke, confined to the pitiful and exclusive trade of Cadiz. Their interests loudly called for an intercourse with all Nations, through the medium of a free and unrestricted Commerce. Besides, the friendship of a People possessing such rich and varied productions cannot be viewed with indifference by any Commercial Nation; and their efforts to open the sources of their riches to the industry of all civilized Communities must doubtless excite a general interest in their favor, and procure them the countenance and support of all Nations.
In their determination to throw off the Spanish yoke, the South
Americans were not influenced by the apprehension or anticipation of future evils. Their lot was notorious, and consigned to the page of history: their sufferings and miseries, while they called on Heaven for vengeance, displayed the debasement and degradation of the hu
The most wretched of Mankind would not exchange his lot with an American, subject to the King of Spain,-deprived as he is of his natural rights, of the protection of Law, and of all justice and equity.
Such was the state of the Spanish Colonies, when a spark from the flame of the altar of Liberty, whose temple is in North America, flashed forth, and rapidly spread to the South, to cheer the fainting hopes of its inhabitants. But as a People may be enslaved a longer or a shorter time, by the machinations and arts of arbitrary power, and their minds benighted by ignorance and the shackles forged by despotism to enchain its victims, a length of time was necessary to ascertain the true means of guiding them in the path of that liberty, the passion for which is never extinguished in the human breast.
The abuses of the Spanish Government increasing with the misfortunes of the Monarchy in Europe, the South Americans then determined to manifest their sentiments on the amelioration of their lot, and to enter into the possession of the right of self-Government, holding up The United States as their model, who, by their noble courage, had burst their chains asunder. From them were taken the forms of Government, both as to the frame of their Constitution and the details of their interior administration. Impressed with the belief that to follow their example was the sure presage of the attainment of their liberties, they felt the conviction, that from this great People have been derived those enlightened principles of legislation, which secure to man the enjoyment of his property and social rights, of opinion and liberty, with the free exercise of his intellectual faculties.
Constitutions were soon promulgated, formed on similar models, with certain incidental changes, as was the case in The United States during the period of their Revolution ; but they never occasioned any change or fluctuation in the principles previously recognised: they served, on the contrary, to modify them by the aid of experience; it being notorious that in the deliberations of the New Governments one of their first resolutions was, to select and appoint certain Citizens, of fair and respectable characters, to proceed to The United States, for the purpose of informing the President of the change in their political system, and of the universal desire of opening the channels of an amicable intercourse. Thus Deputies were despatched to North America, at different times, by the Provinces of Venezuela, New Granada, Rio de la Plata, and Mexico : and as early as 1811, that of Venezuela solicited the acknowledgement of its Government, as
sovereign and independent: but, although this measure doubtless would have tended to accelerate the liberty of that interesting portion of the New World, and stopped the effusion of blood, still so lavishly shed in this sacred cause, The United States did not think fit to take a decisive step in this matter.
In retracing these events, it is not my intention to dilate on the general rights of the Parties in a state of insurrection in America, nor on the motives which influenced the course pursued by the Cabinet (Ministerio,) nor is it the wish of my Constituents; but I conceive that I may, without impropriety, he permitted to remark, that if the Deputies had been received privately and informally, which was all they pretended to, it would not have been repngnant to cordiality, and the promotion of ulterior Communications. The Government of The United States would thus have acquired correct information, as these Deputies, while they were enjoined to pay the greatest respect to the policy and counsels of The United States, were, at the same time, instructed to communicate fully the views of their Governments, by stating their real situation and those unquestionable points of contact which offered the basis of a mutual and sincere amity and good understanding. This view is taken, I repeat it, not for the purpose of censuring the conduct of this Government, but of explaining a truth which, by its internal evidence, naturally presented itself, and which, it might be anticipated, would not escape the attention of those abroad; because these Public Agents would have afforded certain means of forming a more accurate judgment than any Persons sent thither for that purpose. A knowledge of the habits and moral and physical capacity of the People; of the hopes of their Chiefs; of the state of public opinion ; and finally, of the genius and ability of their Rulers to undertake and execute their plans, could only be acquired by a familiar intercourse, cultivated during a long residence ; obstacles, if not impossible, at least very difficult to be overcome by a stranger, from the difference of manners, customs, and opinions, local prejudices, religious distinctions, difference of religion, and, not unfrequently, by the very character of an observer, in which he appears, and which destroys all confidence.
The uninterrupted communication with the Agents of the New Governments, should have satisfied the Government of The United States, that the object and plan of occupying a part of the Floridas, in possession of the Spanish Authorities, were acts which could never have been fundertaken without due authority; and the want of this profitable (exchange of ideas could never appear more palpable than by adverting to the fact, that its advantages were vot fully attained, although the same Agents communicated freely and unreservedly their measures and plans to the most respectable Citizens of these