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are willing even to extend the same principle to the other objects in dispute between the two Nations; and, in proposing all the other Articles included in this Project, they wish to be distinctly understood, that they are ready to sign a Treaty, placing the two Countries, in respect to all the subjects of difference between them, in the same state they were in at the commencement of the present War; reserving to each Party all its Rights, and leaving whatever may remain of controversy between them, for future and pacifick negotiation.
The British Plenipotentiaries having, in their Note of the 4th of September, communicated the disposition of their Government to receive favourably a Proposition which should acknowledge the Boundary from the Lake of the Woods to the Mississippi, or to discuss any other Line of Boundary which might be submitted for consideration, the Undersigned answered, that as soon as the Proposition of Indian Boundary should be disposed of, they would have no objection, with the explanation given by the British Plenipotentiaries, to discuss the subject.
The Government of The United States had, prior to the acquisition of Louisiana, been disposed to agree to the Boundary from the Lake of the Woods to the Mississipi, from a wish not only to arrange that subject, but also to settle, in a definitive manner, the differences respecting the Boundary and Islands in the Bay of Passamaquoddy: and its assent to the proposed Stipulation of that Boundary was refused on account of the acquisition of Louisiana, the Boundaries of which might have been affected by it. The Undersigned cannot agree to fix the Boundary in that Quarter, unless that of Louisiana be also provided for in the arrangement. They accordingly submit for consideration the Article on that subject which appears to have been agreed on between the British and American Commissioners, in the Project of Convention of the Year 1807.
In respect to the intended revision of the other Boundaries between the British and American Territories, with the view to prevent future uncertainty and dispute, the Undersigned propose the reference of the whole subject to Commissioners: and they present accordingly 5 Articles, drawn on the principle formerly adopted by the two Powers for settling the Question respecting the River St. Croix.
The Article already agreed on, respecting the Indian pacification, is included in the Project of the Undersigned. In conformity with their former suggestions, they offer another, intended to restrain the hostilities, and to prevent the employment of the Savages in War, and one reciprocally granting a general Amnesty.
The only other subjects which had been presented by the Undersigned as suitable for discussion, were those respecting Seamen, Blockades, and Indemnities.
Keeping in view the declarations made by Lord Castlereagh, in his Note of the 29th of August, 1812, to Mr. Russell, and in his Letter
of the 4th November, 1813, to Mr. Monroe, the Undersigned propose only a temporary Article, intended, without affecting the rights or pretensions of either Country, to attempt to accomplish, by means less liable to vexation, the object for which Impressment has hitherto been thought necessary by Great Britain. The proposed Agreement being purely conditional, and limited in duration, each Party will be bound only so far, and so long, as the Other shall fulfil its conditions; and at the end of the term fixed for the duration of the Article, or whenever either Party may fail to perform his engagement, the rights of both will be as valid and entire as they were before the Agreement.
The Article respecting Blockades is believed to be in perfect conformity with the principles of the Law of Nations, as acknowledged by both Nations. The definition is borrowed from the Treaty of 1801, between Great Britain and Russia, and the residue of the Article, from the unratified Treaty of 1806, between Great Britain and The United States.
That relating to Indemnities, consists of two parts: the first for irregular seizures, captures, and condemnations of American Property, contrary to the established Laws and usages of Nations, previous to the commencement of the War; and the second for similar irregularities committed during the War, and contrary to the known and established usages of War, between Civilized Nations. The cases of the first apply exclusively to Claims of the Citizens of The United States, because the causes of such Claims were then confined, by the relative situation of the Parties, to one side. It is presumed, that the British Government will itself be sensible of the justice of making indemnity for injuries committed by its Officers, in violation of principles avowed and recognized by itself; particularly in the Letter from Lord Hawkesbury to Mr. King, of 11th April, 1801, and in that from Mr. Merry to Mr. Madison, of 12th April, 1804; and that the same justice will be admitted, in cases where the territorial jurisdiction of The United States was violated, and where the injury was occasioned by the retrospective effects of the British Orders in Council, of June, 1803, as to the return from Contraband Voyages, and of the Orders in Council, of January 7, 1807.
With regard to the Orders in Council, of November, 1807, and of April, 1809, the Undersigned will observe, that these Orders having been issued solely on the ground of retaliation against France, and their object having altogether ceased, it is just to indemnify the Citizens of The United States, for Losses experienced by the effect of Measures intended to operate against the Enemy of Great Britain, and which fell almost exclusively on a Country which was no Party to the War. The United States have never ceased, and at this time continue to demand, from France, Indemnity for the Losses they have experienced by
the effect of the Decrees of her Government, in violation of the Law of Nations.
The cases of the second part of this Article apply equally to both the Belligerent Parties. They have been, during the War, subjects of crimination on both sides. The American Government can give no stronger and more signal proof of its disapprobation of every departure, under colour of its authority, from the established usages of legitimate warfare between Civilized Nations, than by the offer of mutual reparation.
The Article fixing a limitation for Captures at Sea, does not seem to require any comment.
The Undersigned present their entire Project in this specific form, with the full expectation of receiving from the British Plenipotentiaries their explicit Answer respecting all the Articles embraced in it, and a Project also reduced to specific propositions, and embracing all the objects which they intend to bring forward.
The Undersigned renew, &c.
JOHN QUINCY ADAMS,
The Plenipotentiaries of His Britannick Majesty.
(Inclosure.)-Project of a Treaty of Peace, submitted by the American to the British Plenipotentiaries, at Ghent, on the 10th day of November, 1814. [See Page 536.]
The British to the American Plenipotentiaries. Ghent, 26th November, 1814. THE Undersigned have had the honour to receive the Note and Projet of a Treaty of Peace, presented by the American Plenipotentiaries on the 10th instant.
The Undersigned are of opinion that the most convenient course for them to adopt will be to return this Projet with their marginal alterations and suggestions on the several Articles of which it is composed. The existing differences between the two Governments will thus be brought more immediately in view, and it is hoped that, by confining the discussions to one Projet, the Negotiations may sooner be brought to a favourable conclusion. The first part of the Xth Article appears to be unnecessary, and the Stipulation contained in the whole of it altogether inadmissible. Though His Majesty's Government sincerely hopes that a renewal of the War between His Majesty and The United States may be far distant, yet the Undersigned cannot consent to enter into any Engagement as to what shall be the conduct of their Government, if such a War should unfortunately occur.
With respect to the XIth and XIIth Articles, His Majesty's Government has strongly manifested its sincere disposition to the speedy restoration of Peace, by agreeing, under all the present circumstances, to conclude the Treaty without any Stipulation on the points to which those Articles relate. No advantage can arise from entering into discussions, upon a successful result of which the American Plenipotentiaries have stated, more than once, that they will not make the conclusion of the Peace at all to depend.
With respect to the XIIIth Article, the Indemnifications proposed by it, as applied to the actual circumstances of the War, are so unprecedented and objectionable, that any further perseverance of the American Plenipotentiaries in requiring them, is not anticipated by the Undersigned: if, however, contrary to expectation, Indemnifications of this kind should still be required, all hope of bringing the Negotiations to a favourable issue must prove abortive. The Undersigned are instructed explicitly to declare, that as their Government makes no claim on account of losses sustained by British Subjects arising out of a War declared by The United States, so neither can their Government agree to make compensation for losses sustained in such a War by the American People.
The Undersigned are, however, willing to agree to a Stipulation by which it shall be provided, that the Courts of Justice in each Country shall be open to the just demands of the respective People, and that no obstruction be thrown in the way of their recovery of the rights, claims, or debts, of any kind respectively due or belonging to them.
With respect to the XIVth Article, the Undersigned do not concur in the necessity for any such Stipulation as is there proposed.
The Undersigned think proper to add, that, with respect to particular alterations suggested by them, in various Articles of the Projet, they are ready to enter into such explanations as may be required of them, with the sincere desire of endeavouring to reconcile the pretensions brought forward on the part of the respective Governments.
The Undersigned have forborne to insist upon the basis of uti possidetis, to the advantage of which they consider their Country fully entitled. But should this Negotiation terminate in a way contrary to their hopes and just expectations, they must protest against any claim or demand being urged by the American Government in any future Negotiation, in consequence of the facilities which His Majesty's Government have now shown themselves willing to afford to the speedy restoration of Peace.
The Undersigned avail themselves, &c.
The American Plenipotentiaries.
HENRY GOULBURN, WILLIAM ADAMS.
(Inclosure.)-American Project of a Treaty, as returned by
Treaty of Peace and Amity between His Britannick Majesty and The
His Britannick Majesty and the United States of America, desirous of terminating the War which has unhappily subsisted between the two Countries, and of restoring, upon principles of perfect reciprocity, peace, friendship, and good understanding, between them, have, for that purpose, appointed their respective Plenipotentiaries, that is to say, His Britannick Majesty on his part has appointed the Right Honourable James Lord Gambier, Admiral of the White Squadron of His Majesty's Fleet, Henry Goulburn, Esq. a Member of the Imperial Parliament, and Under Secretary of State, and William Adams, Esq. Doctor of Civil Laws; and the President of The United States, by and with the advice and consent of the Senate thereof, has appointed John Quincy Adams, James A. Bayard, Henry Clay, Jonathan Russell, and Albert Gallatin, Citizens of The United States, who, after a reciprocal communication of their respective Full Powers, have agreed upon the following Articles:
ART. I. There shall be a firm and universal Peace between His Britannick Majesty and The United States, and between their respective Countries, Territories, Cities, Towns, and People, of every degree, without exception of (1) Persons or Places. All Hostilities, both by sea and land, shall immediately cease. (2) All Prisoners on both sides shall be set at liberty.* All Territory, Places, and Possessions, without exception, taken by (3) either Party from (4) the other during the War, or which may be taken after the signing of this Treaty, shall be restored without delay, and without causing any destruction, or carrying away any (5) artillery or other public property, or any Slaves or other private property; (6) and all archives, records, deeds, and papers, either of a public nature or belonging to private Persons, which, in the course of the War, may have fallen into the hands of the Officers of either Party, shall (7) be forthwith restored, and delivered to the proper Authorities and Persons to whom they respectively belong.
The following marginal Remarks and Alterations were made and proposed by the British Plenipotentiaries.
Note. It is proposed to omit altogether the words that are underlined (in Italicks.) (1) Places or.
(2) After the exchange of the Ratifications as hereinafter mentioned.
*It is thought more advisable that the provision respecting Prisoners of War should be the subject of a Separate Article: the Draft of an Article on this subject is subjoined.
(3) Belonging to.
(4) And taken by.
(5) of the.
(6) Originally captured in the said Forts or Places, and which shall remain
therein upon the Exchange of the Ratifications of this Treaty.
(7) As far as may be practicable.