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Portland gazette and Maine advertiser. (Portland, Me.) 1805-1818, June 29, 1812, Image 2

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Persistent link: https://chroniclingamerica.loc.gov/lccn/sn83016082/1812-06-29/ed-1/seq-2/

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notes. Bat I believe the calculation
is, that Great-Britain (nmwithftand
ing the exceffively bad character wc
give her) will be very civil to us in
more fo than we represent her
to be in peace. I underftand that the
prohibitation of the importation oi
Britilh Goods is to be taken off—and
of courfe the Embargo- We are te
feed our enemy s armies in Spain and
Portugal, and receive Biitilli Goods
in return, by the fame circuitous rout,
and by the impofition cf Double Du
ties, to fill our Treafury, and defray
the expences of a war ! Such arc the
calculations of cur mil-rulers. The
joy diffufed abroad lately on an erro
neous report that the Senate had re
jected the war meafure, is a proof of
what would give general fatisfaGion
to the people.’*
** livening—The Rubicon is pal
fed-—thc Dtclaration puffed the Se
nate this day—19 to 13.
WAR ! WAR!! WAR!!!
Fmm the National luteUlgencrr, Extra.
4 o’clock P. M.
'If'aftingion, (Thursday) June 18, iSic.
The injunctiort of fecrecy was about
an hour ago removed from the fol
low iog Mefl'age and Act. The re
port or manifefto which preceded tlie
act is too long for prefent publication.
To the Senate and Hcuje of Reprefen.
tatives of the United Sta/et.
I communicate to Congrefs certain
documents, being a continuation of
thole heretofore laid before them on
the iubject of cur affairs with G. Bri
tain.
Without going ba ka beyond the
renewal in 1803, of the war in which
G. Britain is engaged, and omitting
unrepaired ivrongs of inferior magni
tude, the conduct of her government
prefects a feries of acts hoftiie to the
U. S. as an independent and neutral
nation.
Britifli cruifers have been in the
continued practice of violating the
American flag on the great highway
of nations, & of feizing and carrying
eff perfons failing under it ; not in
the exercife of a belligerent right,
founded on the law of nations againlt
an enemy, but of a ounicipai prerog
ative over Briffli fubjects. Brinlli
jurifdiction is thus extended to neu
tral vefleis in a fltuation where no
laws can operate but the law of na
tions and the laws of the country to
which the vcffels belong ; and a lelf
redrefs is affirmed, which, if Britifh
fubiects were wrongfully detained and
alone concerned, is that fubftitution
of force for a refort to the refponfi
blc fovereign, which falls within the
definition of war. Could the feizure
of Britiih fubjects, in fuch cafes, be
regarded as within the exercife of a
belligerent right, the acknowledged
laws of war, which forbid an article
of captured property to be adjudged,
without a regular mveihgation before
a competent tribunal, would imperi*
. oufly demand the faired trial where
the facred 1 ights of perfons were at
iffue. In place of fuch a trial, thefe
rights are fubjected to the will of ev
ery petty commander.
I he practice, hence, is !o far from
affecting Britilh fubjects alone, that
under the pretext ot fcarching for
thefe,thoufands of American citizens,
under the fafeguard of public law,
and of their national flag, have been
tornfrom their country and from ev
cry thing dear to them ; have been
dragged on boarJ Ibips of war of a
foreign nation, and expofed, under
the feverities of their difeipline, to
be exiled to the rood difiant and
deadly clinics, to i isle their lives in the
battles of their oppreffors, and to be
the melancholy inftruments of talcing
away thoi'e of their own brethren.
Againftthis crying enormity,which
G. Britain would be fo prompt to
avenge if committed againff herlelf,
the U. States have in vain exhaufted
remonffrances and exportations.
And that no proof might be wanting
of their conciliatory difpofitions, and
no pretext left for a continuance o*
the practice, the Hritilh government
was formally allured of the reiidincfs
of the U States to enter into arrange
ments, fuch as could not be rejected,
if the recovery of Britifh fubjects
were the real and the ib!e object.
The communication palled without
ctfe&.
Britifh cruizers have been in the
practice atfo of violating the rights
and the peace of our coafts. They
hover over and harrafs our entering
and departing commerce. To the
mbft infuitlng pretenfions they have
I added the moil lawlefs proceedings
in our very harbors; and have wan
tonly (p* %tnlrican blood within the
fanctuary or our territorial jurifdic
, tion. The principles and rules enfor
ced bv that nation, when a neutral
1 nation, againft armed vcflels of bellig
! erents hovering near her coalts, and
| difturbing her commerce are well
known. When called on.nbverthe
lefs, by the U. States to punilh the
greater offences committed by her
own veffels, her government has be
ftowed on their commanders addition
al marks of honor and confidence.
Under pretended blockades, with
out the preltnce of an adequate force,
and fometimes without the practica
bility of applying one, our commerce
has been plundered in every fea ; the
great ftap.es of our country have been
cut off fro 'heir legitimate markets;
and a <ir- *ive bU>vv aimed at our
aoncuf^.al ami maritime interefts.
in aggravation of thtfc predatory
mesfures, they have been conlidtrcd
as in force from the dates of their no
tification j a retrofpective effect being
thus added, as has been done in other
important cafes, to the unlawfulnefs
of the courfe purfued. And to ren*.
der the outrage the more iignal, thefe
mock blockades have been reiterated
and enforced in the face of official
communications from the Britiflf
government, declaring, as the true
definition of a legal blockade, “ that
particular ports muft oe actually in
velted, and previous warning given
to veffels bound to them not to enter.’’
Not content with thele occalional
expedients for laying wafte our neu
tral trade, the Cabinet of Great-Bri
tain reforted, at length, to the 1 weep
ing fyftem of blockades, under the
name of Orders in Council, which
i has been moulded and managed, as
might bell fuit its political views, its
commercial jealoulies, or the avidity
of Britifh cruilers.
To our remonllrances againft the
complicated & tranfeendant injuftice
of this innovation, the firlt reply was
that the orders were reluctantly adop
ted by Great-Britain as a neceiTary
retaliation on decrees of her enemy
proclaiming a general blockade of tae
Britifh dies, at a time when the navat
force of that enemy dared not to iifue
from his own porta. She was remin
ded, without effect that her own pri- j
or blockades, uniupporud by an ade
quate naval force actually applied and
continued, were a bar to this plea :
that executed edicts againlt millions
of our property could not be retalia
tion on edicts confelTedly impoffible
to be executed ; that retaliation, to
be jufl,fliould fall on the party letting j
the guilty example, not on an inno
cent party, which was not even char
geable with an acquiefcence in it.
When deprived of this flimfy veil
for a prohibition of our trade with
her enemy, by the repeal of his pro
hibition of our trade with Great
Britain, her cabinet, inflead of a cor
refpondiug repeal or a practical dif
continuance of its orders, formerly
avowed a determination to pertill in
them againfi the United States, until
the markers of her enemy lhould be
Ird open to Britifh products ; tlug
alferting an obligation on a neutral
power to require one belligerent'To
encourage, by it3 internal regulations,
the trade of another belligerent ;
contradicting her own practice to
wards all nations in paace as well as
in war ; and betraying the infincerity
of thole profeflious which inculcated
a belief that, having relorted to her
orders with regret, flic was anxious
to find an occafiou for putting an
end to them.
i
Abandoning (till more all reipect
for the neutral rights of the United
States, and tor its own contiftency,
the Britilh government now demands
as prercquilites to a repeal of its
orders, as they relate to rhe United
States, that a formality thould be I
obferved in the rej>eal of the French !
decrees nowife nectfi'ary to their |
determination, nor exemplified by !
Britifh ufage ; and that the French I
repeal, betides including that portion
of the decrees which operates within*
; a territorial jurifdiction as well as
J that which operates on the high teas
j againft the commerce of the United
! States, lhould not be a Tingle fpecial
repeal in relation to the b. States,
but lhould be extended to whatever
other neutral nations unconnected
with them may be affected by thole
decrees. And as an additional in
fult, they 3rc called on for a formal
dffavowal of conditions and preten
tions advanced by f c French gov
ernmenr, for which » -e U. States are
fo far from having made ihemfelves
refponfible, tnat, in official explana
tions, which have been publftlied to
the world, and in a correlpondence
of the American miffifter at London
with the Britifh Minifter lor foreign
t Affairs, fuch a refponfibility was ex
plicitly and emphatically declaimed.
It iias become it deed lufliciently
certain that the commerce of the
United States is to be facrificed, not
! as interfering with the belligerent
| rights cf Great Britain, not as lup
! plying the wants of her eneaiier,
which (he herfclf fupplies ; but as
interfering with the monopoly which
file covets for her oivn commerce
i and navigation. She carries on a
! war againft the lawful commerce of
! a friend, that fhe may the better
carry on a commerce with an enemy,
a commerce polluted by the forgeries
and perjuries which are for the molt
part the only palTports by which it
* can fucceed.
Anxious to make every experi
ment fliortofthe I aft re fort of in
j jured nations, the United States have
j withheld from Great Britain, under
| fucceilive modifications, the benefits
! of a free intercourle with their
| market, the lots of which could not
j buf outweigh the profits accruing
from her rtftriftions of our com
merce with other nations. And to
entitle thefe experiments to the more
favorable confederation, they were fo
framed as to enable her to place het
adverfary under the exclufive opera
tion of them. To thefe appeals her
government has been equally inflex
ible, as if willing to make iacriftces
of every fort, rather than yield to the
claims of juftice or renounce the
errors of a falfe pride. Nay, fo far
were the attempts carried, to over
come the attachment of the Britifh
Cabinet to its unjuft eili&s, that it
received every encouragement, with
in the competency of the Executive
branch of our government, to expett
that a repeal of them would be fol
lowed by a war between t-he United
States and France, unlefs the French
edicts fhould alfo be repealed. Even
this communication, although si
lencing for ever the plea of a dilpoli
tion in the United States to acquiefce
in thole edicts, originally the lole
plea for them, received no attention.
If no other proof exifted of a pre
determination of the British govern
ment againft a repeal of its orders, it
might be found in the correlpon
dence of the Minifter Plenipotentia
ry of the United States at Condon,
and the Britilli Secretary for foreign
Affairs in 1810, on the queftion
whether the blockade of May 1806
was conftdered as in force as or not
in force. It had been afcertained that
the French government, which urg
ed tliic blockade as the ground of its
Berlin decree, was willing, in the e
vent of its removal,to repeal that de
cree j which being followed by alter
nate repeals of the other offenfive e
difts, might abolifti the whole fyf
teni on both Tides. This inviting
opportunity for accomplifhing an
object fo important to the United
States, and profefled fo often to be
be the defire of both the belligerents,
was made known to the Britifh gov
ernment. As that government ad
mits that an a&ual application of an
adequate force is necelfary to the ex
iftence of a legal blockade,and it was
notorious, that if fuch a force had
ever been applied, its long difeontin
uance nau annulled tnc blockade in
queltion, there could be no lufficient
objeiftion on the part of Great Britain
to a forma! revocation of it ; and no
imaginable obie&ioti to a declaration
of the fad that th* blockade did not
exitt. The declaration would have
been confident with her avowed
principles of blockade, and would
have enabled the ITnited States to
demand from France the pledged re
peal of her decrees ; either with fuc
cefs, in which cafe the way would
have been opened for a general re
peal of the belligerent edids •, or
without fuccefs, in which cafe the U.
States would have been jultihcd in
turning their meafures exclufively a
gainlt France. The Britilh govern
ment would,however,neither refeind
the blockade nor declare its non-ex
igence nor permit its non-exilfence
to be inferred and affirmed by the
American Plenipotentiary. On the
contrary by reprcleuting the block
ade to be coninreheiided in the or
ders in council, the U. States were
compelled io to regard it in their
; lublcquent proceedings,
There was a per.od when a favor
able change in the policy of the lirit
ilh cabinet was jultiy confidered as
dtablilhed. I he Minifter Plenipo
tentiary of His Britannic Majefty
here propoted an adjuitmenr of the
differences more immediately endan
gering the harmony of die two coun
tries. The proiwlition was accepted
with a promptitude and cordiality
correfponding with the invariable
profeflions of this government. A
ioundation appeared to be laid for a
fincere and lading reconciliation.—
The proipeft, however, quickly van
ifhed. The whole proceeding was
difavowed by the Britdh government
without any explanation which could
I at that time reprefs the belief, that
: the disavowal proceeded from a Ipir
it of hollilityto the commercial rights
and proiperity of the United States.
And it has ilnce come into.proof,
that at the very moment when the
' public Minifter was holding the lan
guage of friendlhip, and infpiring
' confidence in the iincerity of the ne
I gociation with which he was charg
I ed, a ftcret agent of his government
was employed in intrigues, having
foi their objtd a fubvetlion of our
' government, and a difmemjerinent
of our happy union.
In reviewing the conduct or ureat
Britain towards the U. States, our
| attention is neceffarily drawn to the
| warfare juft renewed by the favages
■ on one of our exunfive frontiers ; a
warfare which is known to fpare nei
ther age nor fex, and to be diftm
guiflied by features peculiarly Block
ing to humanity. It is difficult to
account fof the activity and combina
tions which have for fometime been
developing themlelves among the
tribes in conftant intercourse with
Britifli traders and garrifons, with
out conne&ing their hoftiilty with
that influence ; and without recol
lecting the authenticated examples of
fuch interpolations heretofore fur
niffied by the officers and agents of
that government.
Such is the fpedtacle of injuries &
indignities which have been heaped
on our country; and fuch the ends
which its unexampled forbearance &
conciliatory efforts have not been a
ble to avert. It might at lead have
been expected, that an enlightened
nation, if lei’s urged by moral obliga
tions, or invited by friendly difpoli
tions on the part of the United
States, would have found in its true
intereft alone a diffident motive to
refpeCt their rights and their tran
quility oa the high leas ; that an en
larged policy would have favored that
free and general circulation of com
merce, in which the Britilh nation
is at all times interefled, and which
in times of war is the belt alleviation
of its calamities to herfelf, as well as
to other belligerents; and more es
pecially that the Britiffi Cabinet
would not, for the fake of a precari
ous & furreptitious intercourie with
liqflile markets, have perfevereJ in a
courfe of meafures which necelTarily
put at hazard the invaluable market
of a great and growing country, dil
pofed to cultivate the mutual advan
tages of an aCfive commerce.
Other councils have prevailed. Our
moderation and conciliation have had
no other effect than to encourage
perfeverance, and to enlarge preten
fions. We behold our feafaring citi
zens ftill the daily victims of tawlefs
violence committed on the great com
mon and highway of nations, even
within fight of the country which
owes them protection. We behold
veffels freighted with the products of
our foil and induflry, or returning
with the honelf proceeds of them,
wrefted from their lawful deflina
tions, confilcated by prize courts, no
longer the organs of public law, but
the inftruments of arbitrary edicts ;
arid their unfortunate crews difperfed
and loft,or forced or inveigled in Brit
ifti ports into Britilh fleets: whilft
arguments are employed, in fupport
d thele aggreffions, which have no
foundation but in a principle equally
lupporting a claim to regulate our ex
ternal commerce in all cafes whatlo
evef.
We behold, in fine, on the fide of
Great Britain, a ftate of war againfl
the United States; and on the fide of
the United States a fiate of peace to
wards Gaeat Britain.
Whether the United States fhall
continue paflive under thefe progref
five ufurpations, and thele accumu
lating wrongs ; or, oppofing force to
force in defence of their neutral rights,
fhall commit a jull caule into the
hands of the Almighty Difpofer of
events \ avoiding mi
Which might entangle je in
tdh or views of other po.
prderving a comhnt readme?,
concur in an honorable re-eft*^
narnt of peace and frlcnUflll *
f?k.mn queftiun, which the ConftJl
non VVl<cly confides to the Leciflm "
I Vpartmeut of the government r*
recommending it to their rarlv dcliL
erations, 1 am happy it, the a<rUr,r,
that the decifion wdl he worthy
enlightened & patriotic council/^
virtuous, a free, & a powerful r***
Having prefented this view 0f ff
relations of the United States Wl ‘
G. Britain and of the io!emn aw*
five growing out of them, 1 pro
to remark that the community
tail made to Con nd* on the fuJ**
of our relations with France
have fhown that, llnce tlir revocation
of her decrees as they violated thc
neutral rights ot the United Sra'cs !
her government b * authorized hW
captures, by its pr »rc,» and public
fh.ps, and that v outrages have
been practiced On ,Jr
citizen?. It will h o, 0 fm alf
that no indemnity ..,t oeen proved
or fatisfactorily pie ged, tor the
tenfive fpoliaticns 3m nitted unchr
the violent and r, :ofpective order*
of the French gov> mi nt againd the
property of our c; /.en, feized within
the jurifdiction of France. I ab<h;n
at this time from recommending to
the conlideration of Congrefs, d Vu
tive meafures w,th refpect to that ni
tion, in the expectation, that the re
full of unclofed difrufilans between
our Minifter Fieri.porenrian at Pam
and the Fr nch government will fpCe
dily enable Congrefs to decide, with
greater advantage, on the couri'e die
to the rights, the interefts, and thi
honor of our country.
JAMES MADISON.
Waffnngton, June iity U i 2.
DECLARATION OK WAR. L
AN ACT J
j Declaring Jf lir between the Unitt&M
Kingdom eif Great Britain and JrjM
land and the dependencies thereof,\ ,7irfj[]
the United States of American aoi p
their Territories. V
BE it enacted by the Senate Is* Houjt I
oj Representatives cf the Unittd I
States of America in Cuigrefs affembUL 1
I hat WAR be and the fame »s here- J
by declared to exitt between the Uni. I
ted Kingdom of Great-Britain and I
Ireland, and the dependencies there
of, and the United States of Ameri
ca, and their territories ; and that
the Prefident of the TTnited States be
and he is hereby authorized to life
the whole land and naval forces of the
United States to carry the fame into
effect, and to illue to private armed
veil els of the United States coimrif
lions or letters of marcpie and general
reprilal in fuch form as he flnli think
proper, and und^r the leal cf the lT
States, againll the veiTels goods, and
effects of the government of the lame
United Kingdom of GreatBritain and
Ireland, and of the fuhjects thereof.
June 18, 1812.—approved,
JAMES MADISON.
fly the President of the United States of
America,
A Proclamation.
WHERE AS the Congress of the United
States, by virtue of the Constituted Author
ity vested in them, have declared by their act
bearing date the eighteenth Jay ot the pre*
sent month, that * War exists between the
United Kingdom off rcat Britain nr.) Ire
land, and the dependencies thereof, and the
United Slates of America and their territo
nes ; Now therefore, I, JAMES MADI
SON, hereby proclaim the same to all wlu ot*
»t may concern : and l do 5p**ciaily enjoin
on all nersons holding offices, civil or m.litu
rv, under the authority oi die United Stat**..
, that they be vigilant and zealous, in d>»
[charging the duties respectively incident
thereto : And 1 do moreover exhort all the
good people of the United States, as they
love their country ; as they value the pre
cious heritage derived from the virtue and
1 valor of th®ir fathers; as they feel the
! wrongs which have forced on them the 1»**?
j resort ot injured nations ; and as they cuO
j suit the best means, under the l U s*mg *
j Divine Providence, of abridging its calami*
i ties ; that they exert themselves in preserv
ing order, in promoting concord, in main*
taming the authority and the efficacy of the
ltws, and in supporting and invigorating all
the measures which may be adopted by the
Constituted Authorities, for obtaining a
speedy, a just, and an honorable peace.
In resiiMONV whereof, 1 have
hereunto set mv hand, and caused
the seal of the United Slates to be
affixed to these presents.
(Sail.)
Done at the city of Waahtr.glon, ti e
nineteen h day of June one thou
sand C’ght humhed and twelve,
and ot the Independence of the U
State* the tiiirty.aitih.
(Signed) JAMES MADISON*
E, the Preiident
\S.gned)
'James munro ,
Secret sr) of State
t

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