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with which she is at war, as an act of hostility. 8th, That, by instructions from the President of the United States, the American citizens who ranged themselves under the banners of France, have been prosecuted and arrested; a crime against liberty unheard of, of which a virtuous and popular jury avenged with eclat the defenders of the best of causes. 9th, That incompetent tribunals were suffered to take cognizance of facts relative to prizes which treaties interdict them expressly from doing: that, on their acknowledgment of their incompetency, this property, acquired by the right of war, was taken from us, that it was thought ill of, that our consuls protested against these arbitrary acts, and that, as a reward for his devotion to his duty, the one at Boston was imprisoned as a malefactor. 10th, That the President of the United States took on himself to give to our treaties arbitrary interpretations, absolutely contrary to their true sense, and that, by a series of decisions which they would have us receive as laws, he left no other indemnification to France for the blood she spilt, for the treasure she dissipated in fighting for the independence of the United States, but the illusory advantage of bringing into their ports the prizes made on their enemies, without being able to sell them. 11th, That no answer is yet given to the notification of the decree of the National Convention for opening our ports in the two worlds to the American citizens, and granting the same favors to them as to the French citizens — advantages which will cease if there be a continuance to treat us with the same injustice. 12th, That he [Washington] has deferred, in spite of my respectful insinuations, to convoke Congress immediately, in order to take the true sentiments of the people, to fix the political system of the United States, and to decide whether they will break, suspend, or tighten their bands with France — an honest measure, which would have avoided to the General Government much contradiction and subterfuge, to me much pain and disgust, to the local governments, embarrassments so much the greater, as they found themselves placed between treaties, which are laws, and decisions of the Federal Government, which are not: in fine, to the tribunals, duties so much the more painful to fulfil, as they have been often under the necessity of giving judgments contrary to the intentions of the government. It results from all these facts, sir, that I could not but be profoundly affected with the conduct of the Federal Government towards my country.”
By letters of the 9th of November, 1793, President Washington requested Isaac Shelby, Governor of Kentucky, and Arthur St. Clair, Governor of the Territory of the United States northwest of the river Ohio, to “take all the measures in the course of the law," and, “ if necessary, to use effectual military force” for the prevention of any hostile enterprise against the possessions of Spain on the Mississippi. Governor St. Clair immediately published a proclamation in his territory informing the citizens of the contemplated invasion, and warning them of the dangerous consequences of participating in it. The Governor of Kentucky, on the 13th of January, 1794, wrote to Mr. Jefferson, Secretary of State of the United States, a letter which contained the following passage: “I have great doubts, even if they [the agents and officers of Genet] do attempt to carry their plan into execution, (provided they manage their business with prudence,) whether there is any legal authority to restrain or punish them, at least before they have actually accomplished it: for, if it is lawful for any one citizen of this state to leave it, it is equally so for any number of them to do it. It is also lawful for them to carry with them any quantity of provisions, arms, and ammunition ; and, if the act is lawful in itself, there is nothing but the particular intention with which it is done that can possibly make it unlawful; but I know of no law which inflicts a punishment on intention, only, or a criterion by which to decide what would be sufficient evidence of that intention, if it was a proper subject of legal censure. I shall, upon all occasions, be averse to the exercise of any power which I do not consider myself as being and brethren, in favor of a man whom I view as an enemy and a tyrant. I shall also feel but little inclination to take an active part in punishing or restraining any of my fellow citizens for a supposed intention, only to gratify or remove the fears of the minister to a prince, who openly withholds from us an invaluable right, and who secretly instigates against us a most savage and cruel enemy. But, whatever may be my private opinion as a man, as a friend to liberty, an American citizen, and an inhabitant of the western waters, I shall, at all times, hold it as my duty to perform whatever may be constitutionally required of me, as Governor of Kentucky, by the President of the United States." *
early and explicitly invested with; much less would I assume a power to exercise it against men who I consider as friends
* Am. State Papers--- Foreign Relations, i. 172.
In the state of Kentucky, the friends of the Republic of France continued their efforts to raise an army for the invasion of Louisiana. They enlisted men, purchased boats, provisions, arms, and ammunition, and fixed the place of rendezvous at the falls of the river Ohio, from which point they expected to move, with two thousand men, on the 15th of April, 1794. At this time, while the foreign and domestic affairs of the American government were in a critical condition, the fact that the sympathy of a very large portion of the people of the United States was strongly enlisted in the cause of France, did not escape the jealous vigilance of the governments of Great Britain and Spain. Hence, at Quebec, on the 10th of February, 1794, Lord Dorchester told a number of Indian chiefs " that he should not be surprised if Great Britain and the United States were at war in the course of the year.” Soon after this declaration was made Lieutenant Governor Simcoe was ordered to establish a British military post at the foot of the Rapids of the river Maumee, in the heart of the Indian country; and, early in the spring of 1794, a messenger from the Spaniards west of the Mississippi, arrived among the Indians, who were assembled at the Rapids of the Maumee. This messenger was “charged with a war speech, offering assistance from the Spanish settlements about the Mississippi." +
* Am. State Papers-Foreign Relations, i, 456. t Stone's Life of Brant, ii. 375.
In the month of February, 1794, Mr. Fauchet arrived in the United States, and was received as the accredited minister of the French Republic, in the place of Mr. Genet. The new minister condemned the conduct of his predecessor, and, for a brief period of time “used all the means in his power to prevent (French) armaments in the United States." *
On the 24th of March, 1794, President Washington published the following proclamation :-“Whereas I have received information that certain persons, in violation of the laws, have presumed, under color of a foreign authority, to enlist citizens of the United States and others, within the state of Kentucky, and have there assembled an armed force, for the purpose of invading and plundering the territories of a nation at peace with the United States: And, whereas, such unwarrantable measures, being contrary to the laws of nations, and to the duties incumbent on every citizen of the United States, tend to disturb the tranquillity of the same, and to involve them in the calamities of war: And, whereas, it is the duty of the Executive to take care that such criminal proceedings should be suppressed, the offenders brought to justice, and all good citizens cautioned against measures likely to prove so pernicious to their country and themselves, should they be seduced into similar infractions of the laws. I have, therefore, thought proper to issue this proclamation, hereby solemnly warning every person not authorized by the laws, against enlisting any citizen or citizens of the United States, or levying troops, or assembling any persons within the United States for the purposes aforesaid, or proceeding in any manner to the execution thereof, as they will answer the same at their peril: And I do, also, admonish and require all citizens to refrain from enlisting, enrolling, or assembling themselves for such unlawful purposes; and from being in any way concerned, aiding, or abetting therein, as they tender their own welfare; inasmuch as all lawful means will be strictly put in execution for securing obedience to the laws, and for punishing such daring and danger
Am. State Papers--Foreign Relations, i. 598.
ous violations. And I do, moreover, charge and require all courts, magistrates, and other officers whom it may concern, according to their respective duties, to exert the powers in them severally vested, to prevent and suppress all such unlawful assemblages and proceedings, and to bring to condign punishment those who may have been guilty thereof, as they regard the due authority of government, and the peace and welfare of the United States. In testimony whereof I have caused the seal of the United States of America to be affixed to these presents, and signed the same with my hand. Done at Phila. delphia, the 21th day of March, 1794, and of the independence of the United States of America, the eighteenth.
Go. WASHINGTON.” On the 31st of March, seven days after the publication of the foregoing proclamation, Washington despatched orders and instructions to General Wayne, requiring that officer to send a “detachment to take post at Fort Massac;* and to erect a strong redoubt and blockhouse, with some suitable cannon from Fort Washington." In obedience to this requisition, General Wayne ordered Major Thomas Doyle, with a small detachment consisting of infantry and artillery, to move from Fort Washington down the river Ohio, and fortify the site of old Fort Massac. Major Doyle was furnished with the following instructions, which were marked “secret and confidential.” —“It has not been unknown to you, that a number of lawless people, residing on the waters of the Ohio, in defiance of the national authority, have entertained the daring design of invading the territories of Spain. The atrocity of this measure, and its probable effects, are pointed out in the proclamation of the President of the United States, herewith delivered to you. If this design should be persisted in, or hereafter revived, and any such parties should make their appearance in the neighborhood of your garrison, and you should be well in
* Fort Massac, or “the old Cherokee fort," stood on the northern bank of the Ohio, about eight miles below the mouth of the Tennessee river. It is said that the name of this place had its origin in the massacre of a small number of Frenchmen who made an attempt in the early part of the 18th century, to establish a trading post at this point.