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bord Wellesley to Mr. Pinkney. Foreign Office, March
14, 1310. SIR,-The letter which I had the honour to receive from you, under date of the 2d of January, together with the additional paragraph received on the 24th of January, has been laid before the king.
The several conferences which I have held with you respecting the transactions to which your letter refers, have, I trust, satisfied you, that it is the sincere desire of his majesty's government, on the present occasion, to avoid any discussion which might obstruct the renewal of amicable intercourse between the two countries.
The correspondence between Mr. Jackson and Mr. Smith has been submitted to his majesty's consideration.
His majesty has commanded me to express his concern that the official communication, between his majesty's minister in America and the government of the United States, should have been interrupted before it was possible for his majesty, by any interposition of his authority, to manifest his invariable disposition to maintain the relations of amity with the United States.
I am commanded by his majesty to inform you, that I have received from Mr. Jackson the most positive assurances, that it was not his purpose to give offence to the government of the United States, by any expression contained in his letters, or by any part of his conduct.
The expressions and conduct of his majesty's minister in America having, however, appeared to the government of the United States to be exceptionable, the usual course in such cases would have been to convey, in the first instance, to his majesty, a formal complaint against his minister, and to desire such redress as might be deemed suitable to the nature of the alleged offence.
This course of proceeding would have enabled his majesty to have made such arrangements, or to have offered such seasonable explanations, as might have precluded the inconvenience, which must always arise from the suspension of official communication between friendly powers.
His majesty, however, is always disposed to pay the utmost attention to the wishes and sentiments of states in
amity with him, and he has therefore been pleased to direct the return of Mr. Jackson to England.
But his majesty has not marked, with any expression of his displeasure, the conduct of Mr. Jackson, whose integrity, zeal, and ability, have long been distinguished in his majesty's service, and who does not appear, on the present occasion, to have committed any intentional offence against the government of the United States.
I am commanded to inform you that Mr. Jackson is ordered to deliver over the charge of his majesty's affairs in America, to a person properly qualified to carry on the ordinary intercourse between the two governments, which his majesty is sincerely desirous of cultivating on the most friendly terms.
As an additional testimony of this disposition, I am authorized to assure you, that his majesty is ready to receive, with sentiments of undiminished amity and good will, any communication which the government of the United States may deem beneficial to the mutual interests of both countries, through any channel of negotiation which may appear advantageous to that government.
I request you will accept the assurances of the high consideration with which I have the honour to be, &c.
Mr. Pinkney to Lord Wellesley. Great Cumberland Place,
1810. MY LORD, -I have had the honour to receive your lordship's letter of the 14th inst. in reply to mine of the 2d of January; and will lose no time in transmitting it to my government, I have the honour to be, &c.
WM. PINKNEY. Lord Wellesley, &c. &c. &c.
Extract of a Letter from Mr. Pinkney to Mr. Smith. Lon
don, March 27, 1810. “I have the honour to enclose a copy of lord Wellesley's reply to my letter of the 7th inst. respecting the British blockades of France before the Berlin decree.
"I do not think it of such a nature as to justify an ex: pectation, that general Armstrong will be able to make any use of it at Paris; but I shall, nevertheless, convey to him the substance of it without delay.”
Lord Wellesley to Mr. Pinkney. Foreign Office, March
26, 1810. SIR-I have the honour to acknowledge the receipt of your letter of the 7th instant, requesting a further explanation of my letter of the 2d, concerning the blockades of France, instituted by Great Britain during the present war, before the 1st day of January, 1807.
The blockade, notified by Great Britain in May, 1806, has never been formally withdrawn. It cannot, therefore, be accurately stated, that the restrictions which it established, rest altogether on the order of council of the 7th of January, 1807: they are comprehended under the more extensive restrictions of that order. No other blockade of the ports of France was instituted by Great Britain, between the 16th of May, 1806, and the 7th of January, 1807, excepting the blockade of Venice, instituted on the 27th of July, 1806, which is still in force.
I beg you to accept the assurances of high consideration, with which I have the honour to be, &c.
Mr. Pinkney to Mr. Smith. London, April 8, 1810.
Sir,- In a short letter of the 2d instant, by Mr. John Wallace in the British packet, I had the honour to acknowledge the receipt, on the 31st of last month, (by Dr. Logan) of your letters of the 20th of January and the 16th of February, and to inform you that I had, in consequence, an appointment to meet lord Wellesley on the third.
At the interview which took place in pursuance of that appointment, I explained to lord Wellesley the nature of the powers now confided to me, and, as far as was necessary, the subjects to which they related. The result of the conversation which ensued was an understanding that we should begin with an attempt to settle the affair of the Chesapeake, and, that attempt being successful, that we
should proceed to consider next the subject of the orders in council, and lastly, the commercial and other concerns embraced by the commission of 1806 to Mr. Monroe and myself.
In conformity with this understanding, it was agreed that I should immediately follow up the conference with a note stating my authority to adjust with the British government the case of the Chesapeake; and I have accordingly prepared and sent to lord Wellesley the letter of which a copy is enclosed. I have not since heard from his lordship, to whom of course it now belongs to make proposals.
It will not I trust be thought that my letter, which is simply an official notification in civil terms of my power to receive and act upon such overtures as this government may choose to make, goes too far. I have the honour to be, &c.
P.S. April 9th. I have just received from lord Wel. lesley a note of which a copy is enclosed, inviting me to a conference on Thursday next, (the 12th,) doubtless on the affair of the Chesapeake. I have the honour to be, &c.
Mr. Pinkney to Lord Wellesley. Great Cumberland Place.
(Without date.) MY LORD,—I have the honour to state to your lordship in conformity with my verbal explanations in a recent conference, that I am authorized to adjust with his majesty's government the case of the attack on the American frigate Chesapeake, in the month of June, 1807, by the British ship the Leopard.
It will give me sincere pleasure to communicate with your lordship on this interesting subject, in such manner as shall be thought best calculated to lead to a fair and honourable arrangement of it, preparatory to the restoration of kindness and beneficial intercourse between the two countries. I have the honour to be, &c.
Lord Wellesley to Mr. Pinkney. Foreign Office, April
9, 1810. The marquis Wellesley presents his compliments to Mr. Pinkney, and will be happy to have the honour of seeing him at the foreign office Thursday next, at two P. M. if that hour should suit his convenience.
Mr. Pinkney to Mr. Smith. London, April 9, 1810.
Sir,-I have, upon full reflection, thought it necessary to prepare a letter to lord Wellesley, reciting the French minister's official statement to general Armstrong, of the conditions on which the Berlin decree would be recalled, and inquiring whether there exists any objection on the part of the British government to a revocation (or to a precise declaration that they are no longer in force) of the blockade of May, 1806, and of that of Venice, especially the former. As the answer to this letter (upon which I wish to converse with lord Wellesley before I deliver it) will not probably be very prompt, I have in the mean time sent Mr. Lee to Paris with two letters to general Armstrong, of which copies are enclosed. I have the honour to be, &c.
Mr. Pinkney to General Armstrong. London, April 6,
1810. DEAR SIR,—I do not know whether the statement contained in my letter of the 27th of last month, will enable you to obtain the recall of the Berlin decree. Certainly the inference from that statement is, that the blockade of 1806, is virtually at an end, being merged and comprehended in an order in council, issued after the date of the edict of Berlin. I am, however, about to try to obtain a formal revocation of that blockade (and of that of Venice) or at least a precise declaration that they are not in force. As it will not be possible to obtain either the one or the other very soon of indeed they can be obtained at all. I will not detain Mr. Lee, but will send you another messenger