Imágenes de páginas
PDF
EPUB

secured beyond interruption to the great purposes for which they were estabiished.”

Mr. Cass, Sec. of State, to Lord Napier, Brit. min., Sept. 10, 1857, Corre

spondence in relation to the Proposed Interoceanic Canal (Washington,

1885), 153. Lord Napier's note, to which the foregoing is a reply, is given at the same

place.

June 26, 1862, General Herran, Colombian minister at Washington,

invoked the interposition of the United States for Action of Mr.

the protection of the Isthmus of Panama against the Seward.

revolutionary chief, Mosquera. Mr. Seward, in a note to Mr. Adams, then minister of the United States in London, July 11, 1862, said: “This Government has no interest in the matter different from that of other maritime powers. It is willing to interpose its aid in execution of its treaty and for the benefit of all nations." He therefore directed Mr. Adams, and also Mr. Dayton, minister to France, to confer with the governments to which they were respectively accredited, as to the action to be taken by the United States, either alone or jointly with those governments, “in guaranteeing the safety of the transit and the authority of the Granadian Confederation, or either of these objects."

Lord Russell, when Mr. Adams brought the subject to his notice, stated that, so far as his information went, no attempt had been made to obstruct the free transit of the Isthmus, but added that, on the happening of an actual derangement of communication, the British Government would readily cooperate with the United States in the measures that might be thought necessary to make good the privileges secured by the guarantee. Mr. Thouvenel replied, in behalf of the French Government, in a similar sense.

He also intimated an opinion that Gen. Herran did not represent the Government actually in power in Colombia.

Mr. Seward, Sec. of State, to Mr. Adams, min. to England, July 11, 1862, Cor.

in relation to the Proposed Interoceanic Canal (Washington, 1885), 6. The replies of Mr. Adams and Mr. Dayton, dated, respectively, Aug. 1 and

Aug. 29, 1862, are given in the same document, pp. 7–8. March 20, 1878, Mr. Lucien Napoleon Bonaparte Wyse obtained

from the Government of Colombia a concession for the The Wyse conces

construction of an interoceanic canal across Colombian sion.

territory. The concession was approved by the Colombian Congress, May 18, 1878. It was obtained in the name of the International Interoceanic Canal Association, of Paris. The grantees undertook, however, to form, under the imme:liate protection of the Colombian Government, a joint-stock company, which should take the name of The Universal Interoceanic Canal Association, and it was agreed that the enterprise should “always be kept free from political influence."

[ocr errors]

Correspondence in relation to the Proposed Interoceanic Canal (Washington,

1885), 86–93.
In April, 1879, Admiral Ammen, U. S. N., and Civil Engineer A. C. Meno-

cal, U. S. N., were appointed commissioners of the United States to
attend an international conference which was to assemble at Paris on
the 15th of the following month, under the auspices of the Geographical
Society of Paris, to consider various projects for a canal across the Ameri-
can Isthmus. They possessed, however, no official powers or diplomatic
functions, and were not authorized to state what would be the decision
of the United States on any of the points involved. The conference itself
was understood to be one, not of diplomatic representatives of the

respec-
tive governments, but of scientific men and public officers whose experi-
ence and research rendered it desirable that they should exchange views.
(Mr. Evarts, Sec. of State, to Admiral Ammen, April 19, 1879, 127 MS.
Dom. Let. 560.)

“By the treaty of 1846 the United States are guarantors of the neu

trality of any interoceanic canal through the Isthmus Views of Mr.

of Panama, and of the sovereignty of the Republic Evarts.

of Colombia over the territory through which it passes. If we are rightly informed, no other Government has been willing to come into any such treaty relations with Colombia, and to-day such a canal by whomsoever completed would need to rest upon this stipulated protection of the United States, and should the United States recognize their rights under this concession, both its projectors and the Government of Colombia would be authorized under certain contingencies to call upon and be wholly dependent upon this Government for the fulfillment of this obligation. Under such circumstances the United States would have considered it as the manifestation of a just and friendly spirit if the Government of Colombia had furnished us timely information of the proposed concession, and thus enabled us to judge whether the conditions under which our guarantee had been made had been preserved with due consideration both of the rights which that guarantee confers and the obligations which it imposes. ...

“But it cannot be overlooked that by the 35th article of the treaty of 1846 the United States has not only, ‘in order to secure to themselves the tranquil and constant enjoyment' of the advantages of that treaty, undertaken to‘guarantee positively and efficaciously to New Granada' 'the perfect neutrality of the before-mentioned Isthmus,' but they have further obliged themselves to .also guarantee in the same manner the rights of sovereignty and property which New Granada has and possesses over the said territory.' While, therefore, the United States have perfect confidence in these representations, as well as in the strong friendship of the French Government, it can scarcely be denied that such a concession to foreign subjects would introduce new questions of relative rights and interests affecting both the sovereign and proprietary rights of the Government of Colombia and such as would seriously enlarge the responsibilities of our treaty guarantee; and this Govern

[ocr errors]

ment feels that it is not unreasonable in expecting that any concession involving such consequences should be a subject of joint consideration by, and that its details can scarcely be settled without a preliminary agreement between, the Governments of Colombia and the United States as to their effect upon existing treaty stipulations. .

The interest of the United States in the opening of a ship-canal on the Isthmus is peculiarly great. "Our Pacific coast is so situated that, with our railroad connections, time (in case of war) would always be allowed to prepare for its defense. But with canal through the Isthmus the same advantage would be given to a hostile fleet which would be given to friendly commerce; its line of operations and the time in which warlike demonstration could be made, would be enormously shortened. All the treaties of neutrality in the world might fail to be a safeguard in a time of great conflict. ...

“This Government cannot consider itself excluded, by any arrangements between other powers or individual to which it is not a party, from a direct interest, and if necessary a positive supervision and interposition in the execution of any project which, by completing an interoceanic connection through the Isthmus, would materially affect its commercial interests, change the territorial relations of its own sovereignty, and impose upon it the necessity of a foreign policy, which, whether in its feature of warlike preparation or entangling alliance, has been hitherto sedulously avoided."

Mr. Evarts, Sec. of State, to Mr. Dichman, min. to Colombia, April 19, 1880,

MS. Inst. Colombia, XVII. 154, 157, 160, 163.
See the following documents:
Steps taken by the United States to promote the construction of an inter-

oceanic canal, President's message, June 13, 1879, H. Ex. Doc. 10, 46

Cong. 1 sess.
Trade between Atlantic and Pacific coasts, report of Treasury Department,

March 15, 1880, H. Ex. Doc. 61, 46 Cong. 2 sess.
Further letter from the Treasury on the same subject, May 15, 1880, H. Ex.

Doc. 86, 46 Cong. 2 sess.
Testimony taken before select committee in regard to the selection of a

suitable route, Feb. 25, 1881. H. Mis. Doc. 16, 46 Cong. 3 sess.
The Monroe Doctrine, report of Com. on Foreign Affairs, Feb. 14, 1881, H.

Report 224, 46 Cong. 3 sess.; minority report, March 4, 1881, id., part 2. Report of the select committee on the interoceanic ship-canal, declaring

that the United States will assert and maintain their right to possess and control any such canal, no matter what the nationality of its corporators or the source of their capital may be, Mar. 3, 1881, H. Report

390, 46 Cong. 3 sess. Resolution declaring that the consent of the United States is a necessary

condition precedent to the execution of any canal, Feb. 16, 1881, Senate

Mis. Doc. 42, 46 Cong. 3 sess.
Resolution, April 27, 1881, S. Mis. Doc. 18, 47 Cong., special sess.
Mr. Burnside, Com. on For. Rel., May 16, 1881, reporting favorably a reso-

lution declaring that the United States will insist that its consent is a
necessary condition precedent to the execution of any way for the
transit of ships, and to the adoption of rules and regulations under

which other nations may use it in time of peace or of war, S. Rep. 1,

47 Cong. special sess. Senate resolution asking for information as to whether the Government

had taken any action for the protection of United States interests in the projected canal, introduced Oct. 13, and passed Oct. 14, 1881, Cong.

Record, 47 Cong. special sess. 522. “It is, however, deemed prudent to instruct you, with all needful reserve and discretion, to intimate to the Colombian Government that any concession to Great Britain or any other foreign power, looking to the surveillance and possible strategic control of a highway of whose neutrality we are the guarantors, would be looked upon by the Government of the United States as introducing interests not compatible with the treaty relations which we maintain with Colombia.”

Mr. Evarts,' Sec. of State, to Mr. Dichman, min. to Colombia, July 31,

1880, MS. Inst. Colombia, XVII. 181, in relation to a rumor that the British Government had been examining the Island of Gonzales, on the Pacific Coast of the Isthmus, with a view to establishing a naval station there,

"The relations between this government and that of the United

States of Colombia have engaged public attention Message of Presi

during the past year, mainly by reason of the project dent Hayes, 1880.

of an interoceanic canal across the Isthmus of Panama, to be built by private capital under a concession from the Colombian Government for that purpose. The treaty obligations subsisting between the United States and Colombia, by which we guarantee the neutrality of the transit and the sovereignty and property of Colombia in the isthmus, make it necessary that the conditions under which so stupendous a change in the region embraced in this guarantee should be effected-transforming, as it would, this isthmus, from a barrier between the Atlantic and Pacific oceans, into a gateway and thoroughfare between them for the navies and the merchant ships of the world-should receive the approval of this government, as being compatible with the discharge of these obligations on our part, and consistent with our interests as the principal commercial power of the Western Hemisphere. The views which I expressed in a special message to Congress in March last, in relation to this project, I deem it my duty again to press upon your attention. Subsequent consideration has but confirmed the opinion that it is the right and duty of the United States to assert and maintain such supervision and authority over any interoceanic canal across the isthmus that connects North and South America as will protect our national interests.'

President Hayes, annual message, Dec. 6, 1880. (For. Rel. xii.)
For the special message of March 8, 1880, above mentioned, and the report

of Mr. Evarts, as Secretary of State, see S. Ex. Doc. 112, 46 Cong. 2 sess. See, also, President Haves' annual message. Dec. 1, 1879, as to a projected

treaty between the United States and Colombia.

ܕܕ ܕ

For the Wyse concession of March, 1878, for the construction of a canal

across the Isthmus of Panama, see Correspondence in relation to the

Proposed Interoceanic Canal (Washington, 1885), 86.
See Mr. Foster, Sec. of State, to Mr. Coughlin, Dec. 22, 1892, and to Mr.

Abbott, Feb. 8, 1893, MS. Inst. Colombia, XVIII. 348, 359, concerning
the extension or substitution of the Panama Canal concession.

“The United States recognizes a proper guarantee of neutrality as

essential to the construction and successful operation Circular of Mr.

of any highway across the Isthmus of Pamana, and Blaine.

in the last generation every step was taken by this government that is deemed requisite in the premises. The necessity was foreseen and abundantly provided for, long in advance of any possible call for the actual exercise of power.

“In 1816 a memorable and important treaty was negotiated and signed between the United States of America and the Republic of New Granada, now the United States of Colombia. By the thirty-fifth article of that treaty, in exchange for certian concessions made to the United States we guaranteed positively and efficaciously'the perfect neutrality of the isthmus and of any interoceanic communications that might be constructed upon or over it for the maintenance of free transit from sea to sea; and we also guaranteed the rights of sovereignty and property of the United States of Colombia over the territory of the isthmus as included within the borders of the State of Panama.

“In the judgment of the President this guarantee, given by the United States of America, does not require re-inforcement, or accession, or assent from any other power. In more than one instance this government has been called upon to vindicate the neutrality thus guaranteed, and there is no contingency now foreseen or apprehended in which such vindication would not be within the power of this nation. ..

“The great European powers have repeatedly united in agreements such as guarantees of neutrality touching the political condition of states like Luxembourg, Belgium, Switzerland, and parts of the Orient, where the localities were adjacent or where the interests involved concerned them nearly and deeply. Recognizing these facts the United States has never offered to take part in such agreements or to make any agreements supplementary to them.

While thus observing the strictest neutrality with respect to complications abroad, it is the long-settled conviction of this government that any extension to our shores of the political system by which the great powers have controlled and determined events in Europe would be attended with danger to the peace and welfare of this nation.”

Mr. Blaine, Sec. of State, to Mr. Lowell, June 24, 1881, For. Rel. 1881, 537.
Mr. Lowell was instructed to take an early opportunity to confer with

Earl Granville and to read to him the foregoing instruction, and, if he

should desire it, leave with him a copy of it. (Mr. Blaine, Sec. of H. Doc. 551--vol 3—2

« AnteriorContinuar »