Imágenes de páginas
PDF
EPUB

also of the messages of the President and reports of Heads of Departments, and all applications for office. Ordinarily one clerk was to perform the duties, but another was to assist when the publishing and distributing of the laws was in progress, and for the present in arranging and putting in complete order the archives and papers.

6. Bureau of pardons, and remissions and copyrights and of the care of the Library. One clerk was to perform the duties, preparing the pardons for signature, receiving all copyrights directed by law to be deposited in the Department, collecting the statutes of the different states and caring for the Library.

7. Disbursing and Superintending Bureau. One clerk was to perform the duties of making purchases, keeping the accounts, and paying out the appropriations, and keeping the seal of the United States and of the Department.

8. Translating and Miscellaneous Bureau. It was to translate “all letters, papers, and documents of every description whatsoever relating to the business and duties of the Department.” It was also to enter upon the mail books all communications received at the Department; to make out and record personal and special passports, and write the letters on that subject, correspond with the dispatch agent, file miscellaneous letters. One clerk was to perform the d::ties.

Beside this definite arrangement two clerks in the Secretary's office were to copy generally and render such assistance to the other clerks as might be rendered necessary from time to time.

One unassigned clerk was to temporarily assist in Bureau No. 4.

The arrangement of clerks in the Patent Office was to remain unaltered for the present.

Notwithstanding the arrangement set forth the Secretary was to be free to direct any clerk to perform such duties as he saw fit.

The hours of business were to be from ten A. M. to three P. M., during which hours no clerk was to be absent, without special permission.

All business was to be treated as strictly confidential. munications, except as to matters of accounts, to and from the Secretary, with the gentlemen employed in the Department, were to be

All com

made through the chief clerk, unless otherwise invited by the Secretary

“A particular and minute Register ” was ordered to be kept, under the direction of the chief clerk, of the receipt of letters and communications and of their daily disposition, and of the Department's action.

A similar register was to be kept by each bureau.

All business referred to the respective bureaus was to be finally acted upon and disposed of on the day of reference, unless imprac. ticable for good cause," so that the business of one day shall not be left to accumulate for another."

Copies of papers on file were in no case to be furnished to individuals having an interest in them; “and no copy of any letter relating to the Diplomatic or Consular Bureau shall be at any time furnished to any one, without express direction of the President of the United States, or of the Secretary of State."

No one was to write any letters relative to Department business without the Secretary's approbation.

Leave of absence for a longer period of time than twenty-four hours must be requested of the Secretary in writing. 3

John Forsyth, who succeeded McLane the following year, modified the distribution of duties, his order taking effect October 31, 1834.

The Home Bureau was enlarged. One division was to register the returns of passengers from foreign ports, the abstracts of registered seamen and prepare the annual statements thereof for Congress; also to record the domestic and miscellaneous correspondence; and to have custody of treaties and foreign presents permitted to be shown to visitors. Under another clerk was all the domestic correspondence of the Department not pertaining to any other bureau, the making out and recording of commissions, preparing statements of vacancies occurring and of expiring commissions, the making out and recording of exequaturs, the receiving and filing of applications for office, the preparing of certificates to be authenticated under the seal of the Department and the custody of the seals of the United

35

35 Papers from the President, 1833 to 1836, Dept. of State, MSS.

States and of the Department. Another clerk had charge of the petitions for pardons and remissions of sentence and passports and correspondence relative thereto, and kept a daily register of all letters received other than Diplomatic; of their disposition, and of the action of the Department thereon. To make the proper entries in this register each bureau, except the Diplomatic, was required to send to the Home Bureau the purport of all answers to letters as soon as prepared, or if no answer was to be given, must state the disposition made of the letter. The register was to be submitted daily to the Secretary. Another clerk was to file and preserve the returns of copyrights and register the copyrighted books, and prepare the letters relating thereto; also to record reports to the President and two Houses of Congress and assist in recording and copying generally. What had been the Bureau of Archives, Laws and Commissions was abolished and the office of the Keeper of the Archives took its place, with one clerk who was to have charge of the Archives of the Department, other than Diplomatic and Consular, and their arrangement and the correspondence relative thereto. Ile also had in his care the rolls of the laws and their recording, publication, and distribution and the distribution of public documents.

The Translator and Librarian was to make the translations and perform the duties of Librarian. Instead of the Disbursing and Superintending Bureau was substituted the Disbursing Agent who was to have charge of all the disbursements and purchases, under the control of the President and Secretary of State. 36

The work of the Department was thus elaborately subdivided. It remains to follow the changes and developments of the divisions.

GAILLARD HUNT.

[The next section will be devoted to a further consideration of the Subdivisions of the Department.]

36 1 Circulars, 54.

THE SLAVE-TRADE IN THE SPANISH COLONIES OF

AMERICA: THE ASSIENTO 1

INTRODUCTION: TIE

PACT COLONIAL

AND THE ASSIENTO

President Monroe in his famous message to Congress, December 2, 1823, aimed both at the attempts at colonization which Europe might be led to make upon American soil, and the efforts which Spain might make to place its emancipated colonies again under her yoke. Europe saw

Europe saw with displeasure that the watch-word “America for the Americans,” by which phrase they briefly and incompletely condensed the purport of the message, had a double significance, political above all for the United States, but one almost exclusively economic for the countries of Latin-America, which adopted it with enthusiasm.

The policy of Spain with regard to her colonies, although it no longer, since Charles III, sanctioned the system of ruthless exploitation which had been in force during two centuries, was incapable of adapting itself to the modern necessities of the life of nations. The colonies had been ruined by a régime of exaggerated exclusivism and of unbounded deception, the latter continuing when they tried to abandon the former. It would be difficult in our day to imagine what the Spanish colonial system was in its beginning. Claiming by right of conquest the possession of the New World which they had discovered, and which Columbus had given them without knowing it, the Spaniards were the first to invent the absurd system known by the name of “ pact colonial” or of reciprocal exclusiveness. The “ pact colonial ” consisted in its essence of the following: all the products of the colonies must be carried to the mother-country, upon Peninsula vessels, and bought hy merchants from the Peninsula, who were invested with a second monopoly which was the counterpart of the first; to provide the colonies with all manufactured products

1 This article was translated from the French of Professor Scelle by Mrs. Edna K. Hoyt, of the Department of State, Washington, D. C.

which might be necessary to them. The results were fatal; the products of the colonies were bought excessively cheap, as they were in superabundance and had but a single market; on the other hand, the manufactured products of the mother-country reached exorbitant prices, being more insufficient to the demand as the colonies became more extended and more populous.

Lastly, the colonists, deprived of a merchant marine and condemned not to engage in manufactures, vegetated in a state of civilization as stagnant as it was precarious. When they wished to react, it was too late, they did not know how to go about it, and besides, one can not with impunity condemn human societies to ignore progress without lessening the social value of the individuals.

The disastrous effects of this system were felt more in the Spanish colonies than anywhere else, because it was a whole world which Spain proposed to place under this withering régime, and because, by the decay of her industries, the mother-country was less able than any other to satisfy the needs of her colonists and subjects beyond the seas. The results, therefore, of this lamentable policy were still felt at the period of the emancipation of the countries of Latin-America, of which they were one of the hidden but certain

One might wonder even how the New World could live under a régime so contrary to the nature of things, if one did not remember that illicit trade, or as they termed it then, colonial “interloping," was raised there to the dignity of an institution. The colonies established in the Antilles by England, France, Holland, Denmark, Brazil itself in the hands of the Portuguese, and by the colony of the Sacrement, served as warehouses for the merchandise of Europe. The Spanish officials, better posted with regard to the needs of the colonists than the Government of Madrid, closed their eyes to the clandestine traffic, which besides was most lucrative to them, for when they did not carry it on themselves, they charged dearly for their toleration. That is the way that America was able to live.

One of the most important factors of this illicit trade was the slave-trade, and the importance which the traffic in slaves took on on this head for maritime nations, rivals of Spain, came exclusively

causes.

[ocr errors]
« AnteriorContinuar »