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TO DON FRANCISCO DIONISIO VIVES
Department of State,
WASHINGTON, 25 September, 1821.
Your letter of the 23d of last month has been submitted to the consideration of the President of the United States. The question upon the construction of the second and seventh articles of the treaty of 22 February, 1819, will, as you propose, be referred to the fair and just consideration of your government.
That question is upon both the articles not only at first view the same, but no reason is perceived which could justify a difference of principle in its application. If it be admitted that the Spanish negotiator intended that the supply of provisions should be included in the stipulation for transportation, it is certain that this intention was not expressed, and you are well aware that whatever the intention of one party to a treaty may be, unless expressed, it can be binding upon the other only so far as upon a liberal principle of construction it is to be implied.
If it was natural that the Spanish negotiator should intend under a stipulation for conveyance, to include a supply of provisions, it was assuredly not less natural that the American government should intend, under an acquisition of fortifications, to include those defences without which they could not deserve the name; and the presumption is in the present case strongly corroborated by the fact that in the treaty no provision is made manifesting any intention on the part of the Spanish government for carrying away the artillery. Your observation, that the artillery to be left is of more value than the rations to be supplied, is of no
effect upon the principle. The application of the principle upon one article is in favor of Spain, upon the other in favor of the United States. The amount of value depending to the one or to the other upon the result can have no bearing upon the principle itself.
No imputation upon your candor was intended by the remarks in my letter of the 13th of August last, to which you have replied. No charge of using double meanings was made or insinuated against you. Although no express stipulation for a supply of provisions existed in the treaty, you requested that they might be furnished by the American government. You thought, and you still think, that the United States ought to furnish them. The American government assented to the construction of the article which you desired, in the full confidence that Spain would not hesitate to recognize the same principle in one article to the advantage of the United States, which she claimed in another for her own benefit. In this confidence it was deemed useless to anticipate by speaking to you of a question which it was expected would never be made; and which, if made, it was presumed you would have neither instructions nor authority to adjust, as by your communication now appears to be the fact. But as it was foreseen that possibly the question might be made, the instructions to General Jackson were given, a copy of which was communicated to you with my letter of the 13th of last month. The government of the United States wish for no undue advantage in the construction of the treaty; but they rely on the justice of yours to exercise the same liberality which it claims, and to acquiesce in the interpretation of one article by the same principle, upon which, in its behalf, you insist, as governing the fair construction of another.
With regard to the conduct of the governor and captain
general of the island of Cuba, relating to the execution of the treaty, the suitable representations will be made directly to your government, through the minister of the United States at Madrid.
pray you, etc.
MY DEAR SIR:
TO ROBERT WALSH, JR.
WASHINGTON, 26th October, 1821.
All that I am now at liberty to say to you concerning the recent events in Florida is, that I have seen no cause to alter my opinion and that the subject is in discussion here.1 You have taken in your paper what appears to be the correct course, viewing the conduct of General Jackson in the spirit of candor and not of electioneering hostility, and with regard to any particular acts of questionable character, waiting to ascertain facts before passing sentence of condemnation. If time and circumstances permit, I will write you more fully hereafter, when the snarl shall be more unravelled than it is yet.
You observe that the oration storm has lulled, but I perceive that "Plain Truth" and the "Friend to calm and temperate discussion" has had his dash at it. This gentleman, whom I think you have decisively shown to be identically the same without asserting it, must be edified at the public exposure you have made of his pretensions and motives. The bank and its able and honorable President 2 will suffer little from anything henceforth said under either of these two marks, and your article Tuesday last, in reply
1 Adams, Memoirs, October 23, 24, 25, 1821.
2 Langdon Cheves.
to the Philadelphia Gazette, appeals to principles so sure and so just with regard to the personalities of the press, that I hope it will not be without its effect, not only upon other editors but upon the public mind.1
I inclose in confidence a letter I have lately received from Stockholm, the perusal of which will I hope afford you half an hour's amusement. I will thank you to return it, as Hughes is one of my most pleasant correspondents, and I set more than a diplomatic value upon his letters. I remain, etc.
TO JOAQUIN DE ANDUAGA 2
DEPARTMENT OF STATE, WASHINGTON, 2 November, 1821.
Previous to your arrival in this country, I had the honor of receiving from Don Hilario de Rivas y Salmon, then chargé d'affaires from your government, a letter, dated the 6th of the last month, with sundry papers enclosed, exhibiting complaints against the governor of the territories of Florida, for certain proceedings in his judicial character against Col. Don José Callava.3 That letter was immediately submitted to the consideration of the President of the United States;
1 "My quarrels with the editors of newspapers are pursued by me, in nearly all instances, for the purpose of inculcating some broad principles of propriety and justice, in the observance of which there is a lamentable remissness in the management of the daily press. Real independence and rectitude of sentiment seem to Walsh to John Quincy Adams, October 30, 1821. Ms. Minister from Spain. See Adams, Memoirs, October 29, 1821. Printed in American State Papers, Foreign Relations, IV. 787.
be thought impossible."
'See Bassett, Life of Andrew Jackson, ch. XVI.
by whose directions, I have now the honor of addressing you in answer thereto.
The complaints in substance are,
1. That Col. Callava being a commissioner of his Catholic Majesty for delivering the province over to the United States, and entitled to the special protection of the laws of nations, his house was entered forcibly in the night time, and he himself, being then sick in bed, was under special circumstances of rigor and inhumanity, summoned and compelled to go before Governor Jackson to answer interrogations.
2. That the questions put to him, and his answers to them, were both falsely interpreted, he being ignorant of the language in which the interrogations were put.
3. That he was finally committed to prison and there detained for the space of a day before he was released.
4. That during the period of his detention his house, his property, and the papers of his government were left at the mercy of the soldiery; that he found on his return to his house the seals of his government upon certain boxes of papers broken, and some of the papers scattered about.
I am instructed by the President of the United States to assure you of his deep regret that in the completion of a transaction of such high importance to both nations, any circumstances to excite pain on either side should have occurred.
On the merits of the proceeding complained of, all the light necessary to the formation of a correct judgment has not been received. It would be improper, therefore, in the present state to pronounce definitively on the subject. In its intercourse with foreign powers the government of the United States is scrupulously observant of the rights of the representative character of persons charged by their governments with the performance of any duty incident to their