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0 / 75
THE NORTH - CAROLINA MINERVA
F A Y E TT E L L T I S E R.
, FJTF.TTEVIT.I.E :-"Published. every. SATURDAY by. HODGE and BOYLAN.
S AT U R I) A Y, November 4, 1 797.
"Tetter font Mr. Pickering, Secretary of 'State., to the
Chevalier De Truja, Envoy Extraordinary and Mini
jler Plenipotentiary of his Catholic Majtjiy, to the li
nked .Stain cf America. ' " - " -DEPARTMENT
' Philadelphia, Augult 8,1 757.
I DULY received your letter of the'nth of the
lail month, to which my other engagements, have
till this ti:ne prevented an anfwer.
' My additional, report to the Prcfident of the U
nited States on the 3d of July, in relation to SpanihY
of your writing to me on the itth. If, fir, I were
now to make the j 11 II remarks, and recriminations
which your letter ob vioully fuggefts," I am afraid yon
-would be ftiir more. offended, Tm not fure4fldeedr
t ha ttxa n poffiblc frame wan f wer that wil le fcape-
your diiplealure ; bat 1 (hall mdeavnur that it-be ex
pr.-fiVd not in a' ityle indecorous uiuifml, and unbe
co miner a .hplomstlr or-fpcl..-e, vvhili? jc con
raiss a fair expofion of fafts ard ary umtnte, in op.
polition to errors and aftual mifieprefer.tatiorrs. .
In lefpeCt to your fufpicions of an expedition pre
paring on the' kkes.by the Bri'ifh, for an attaek.upqn
Uppe'flJoiiifisna, .I have 'ft id- that you 'never rr.en-v
tinned a fiuglc fact or rcaforron which your fufpicions
were founded, lu'contradidion t this riTertion," you
hy that 'r In bur conference on the 27th of Februa
ry, you gaye me infotmatkui that a corps of i 50 men
had been r,ifed at M utreal, uhd marched towards the
lakes, where, after the eva; inMon of the American
polls, there was no oiteiifible objtcl.fbr them :"
That you knew tlvat the Britifh agents" had treated
with f.-me of th Indian nations in that country, con
cerning the intended expedition ; and that you. added,
that you had recem-d thofe advw:es from a perfon who
mightjje depended n7 who had feen thefe new I; vies
palling through JohVitcnvn onTtheii way 7 to the "ii-eli-'
ward"." To this, fir, I suff er, that I have nn the
flighetr recollection that you mentioned either c Y thefe
eirourtiflance9 v hat th fcietary of war happened to
camc into my office while we wvie con'verfing, at which
you exprefiedytiur fatisfaftiori, and ' tpctcd 'your
.fufpitfionsy-- and ne y5 you tlien .mentioned :n-y fact,
er rcafon as the ground thereof; ani that when I
mentioned the fitbje'ft to the Prefident, certainly with
in ten or twelve days after this conference, I perfectly
remember mating, to him this remark---That in your
letter of .March 2d, you fald you hid t'ree davs before"
declared to rrie thej.ift reafons "you had for fjfpccling
that the' Englifh were preparing the expedition in ques
tion"';' whereas ' you 'had 'offered me no r'e'afon at .all.
"Hence T arn ohBgH':tFoSihclu3e' that yot" might have
held fuch a converfation with ferine other '.perfon, and
by miftake1 have applied it to'mj.The liiglifti rail
ing 350 then 'archinfg them througli " Johriltown
& tamperingwjthejlfldi.aria to promote theesped
-vtre clrcumflahcc which appeared rkrfec'tTy new to.
me when I leceiyed your letter of the iithinfl. I
remember alfo, thai the" confeVence ended by your fay-
? yu would write to trtjon the fuhje'i ; whic.t evident
niiter on the 19th of June, I believed the expedition
to be groundlefs." Bui. -after remarking that you
never mcntiohed a nglc fact or reafon to fupport youi
fufpicions 1 fay, " Yiotiiall theex'yling circumjlanccs 1
ever believed the fufnicion to be -groundlefs ". If
proofs had exilKd, you would ha-e produced, them ;
for although intrigues. zn&.cohftlracies for t lk' purpofe of
a militarv'expedition may long be concealed ; ytt the
preparations for an expedition (and fuch you fuggctt
were making)'mul be vifible to many ; efpecially ''on
the lakes," hete every moment for fuch a de!ign would
be unufual, and therefore attract the more attention
have been attainable ; .but .you produced none :,
- Ari other materia! eiretimftance- i -mttft-Tiotice
,That troops of the Ui !tcd States wen ilationcd at
io fi'tiatiQiis well calctila-U;U-
i to proftft our ten-itory, a veil a; y!ifL'oytr.-nd get
intormS.tion ot, any vjIiJf.e preparations 10 conlHtera
ble as fuch an expedijn would nq iir't. and that
the ufu eis rrirrimmuSurg on thofe fiaiiJii;; couidnot
have failed to communicate fuch difcoveries-ot infor
mation to the department -of var; yet no fuch com?
tnunications were made... ' ;.-r. .,-
But it was alfo, well krewn tliatil ey laid nut o.
the lakes a force adequate to. the -enterprise -in -quef-tion.
I confidertd alfo the great difTtcuIties that
would attend the transportation "of 'troops, equip
age, proviiMinf,. cannon,- and ftor.es,-- by cither of
the routes fuggeft'rd if either covld have been taken
without violating the territory 'of th United Mates.
.. Thefe were -ci-curnllances .abundantiy fuaeiito"
difcredit nahdfiti-iaS; 'and "the delavriion.of Mr.
LiHon'. ijii the note 4 the i.i: June, v; mentioned
only 'ilSitoilfSrtniitg the jiiO .'ivft 'of the opinion uhich
I had at fu ll lovnjed in Ms.ixU, and -uhich -l,tonli-iua;
to eh'lertaTn of yourTuFpic at
that early penod,M hc had
no knowledge of iych all expedition J, and his-entpii-.
rice of the govertior-gcncr.al of Canada and the B'Lilh
ice: ttat-y of Hate, have cnablrd him p'()'".',i-V'-ly to alurt,
i-rr the'' above" iu-le, that no fuch expedition was 'ver.
intruded. nnd this facl vt-jK-ls your i .i;;gci'li:ns '.hat
I had been " rei.ufs ' in -non doing for. two months
what, on my own principles, wa6 proper to have been
done: 'But y.u think 1 o"iight not 'to have' com numi
eattd your .fu.tnic-ipus 'of this 1. 1: pcclition to thc..B.ritifli
jfi'--- -hiVsriotiona-were to be .vatched."
V')iT thTnE on iht-canrtary
ly im plied that your written) reptefentation was to be
the balls. of any adt of' mire, 'or of the gpyernirient..
In that letter, fir, iT poiTelTed any grounds, 'for your
JfipiiCuifflSy youi.vj'ht-to4c4wt For' cor
trary to the opiiiioij yoti have ndw'ex plffecj," 1 "."have
no .He fit at ion in faying thatthe'goveninicnt of th'gjjr
nited States was tiotbound to take notice ?m ,the Vague
and Mnfupported Icfpicions of any miniiler; at.-leaft
not to incur cxpehXe, .by its military . arrangements, td
prevent an imaginary expedition f uch a w's 3 thfobjeft
of yours." Wlierr you mas" a fo: nVal ftatement ' of
your fiifpicioTis', but without any ficto fii'ew.that the
were1 founded '; when the govcrnmcit of .the'. United
States p.b'ffefred'-'tfd 'other itiibrmatioii,' r.6r tlie know-
- ledge of anv circumftances indicative of the expedi-
-tton ; and jvhen fft it felf it appeared diiHti:t? of even
the fhadoW of probability X" it was an act of compliu
fance to afitire you that it " would be anzcious to
tnarntain the riglrts of' t'neif rieutral ituatibn, and on
i;U-hfiona -,?d"npt ?nd pu'rftic tfiofe! meafurevMKy
lliould appear pproper and expedient tor that cnu.
. WhaFthefe meafui:esi ilionld be,; anu when to be taken,
the govt't nmt'Ht it frlf -.wimld jtid
LTf-.-'-"-' ' ltrgy.anabrrrth oil'
the aiit of -Apnf yoii renewed the declaration-or your
tint the Piefident fliOuld
have given fVii able"(trJers to Gr.. Wilk'eiifoh,"'or to
the commaricliiig )fScer of the military force on thofe
frontiers-;' but we hve'kept a pvrferfl filfic.ei towards
the Brit nil rIuve let thi'iu ocrgttthcit-eparatLons.
(if any had " been making) and collect "their ar.-ny
on the lakes have let them inove ,VrvvardYui:l they
lliould enter i.pon th: teriitory of the United States ;
and" feerYig-the-Tr'ideat cauMijut ktio'w b.f fore Jiandx
whether they: would prefect. te their march by ; Fox
liver and Oaifconfion, 01 the Illonois," we may fup
pofe yoiir ideas cf 'the ' juiiable o-devs" to the 'mil!
tary to be that at'a great ?:pence the ' troops df-ttTe
United States fnould be drawn into that country and
divided ir.to corps.. i to he polle-d on thofe rivers, to have
fought the" Biitifh army, and thus hve "defeated their
after iiaving craireonneittnTerrcii 00
feme aft interc.ling to your own, you have then pre
fumed to dittate how it fiuruld be dope. . -
"' But (you fay ) 7011 iiever"- could have - imagined
th arl ; woli i d iJiave grvxn to th e B ritifii m in i fie r a" piece
pof advice, which might enable him-tb alter his plan,
1 .hv 1-ttin'r h''m knmv th At thf. frrr.r.r -fne wan dllf o-
! vcred." .' ivhat.jir, was lire plan of the Britijh to
defeat v hich yo;i defired the American government to'
ijfirfrfcii V AVhy, frceoiding to your. fulp!Cions,tit"wav
to march an army ihrotfuh the ttrntory or the United
I States' againfrUpper Louifiana.' ' If ticn the comiim-
Dication ot your luipjcions to Mr., iwlton wouw in
duce him V to altef-is plan" it .would by a vord or
J a letter, in.lead of ah army. defeat the expedition ;
.-Jiorlitw,aVotpoliblL' it- ftioirldof()rward except
two thei territory ot. the United States ; and conic
qiieTStly tlie communication, inftead of difa'ppointing,
vvauUl have pevfvfIy6eompIiiled what-yeqite-ite4.
On the 4th the inauguration of the fucceeding Prefi
dent a-edebrated The-th-of-March was ounday.
The five following days were not unoccupied ; and on
the 1 ith of March the anfwer to your-letter of the 2d
was given. 1 And although you attach fo much im
portance toi your fufpicians, the . details I have given
prove-that they were then deftitute of probability
that they were in faft unfounded ; and conlequently
of ncTimportance ; that as fuch I then juflly eoniidered
them ; and therefore needed no very pawcrfal" mo
tive to remain filent five davs ' - "
I 'cannot but regret that my reafoning ia fo often
the polls occupied by the' troops of Spain within the
tenitoi y of the' Uiiited;Slate6 had been evacuatecfi
and your antwer, that not having for fome months
heard from the Bartni-CaTandchoajitredepTwed""
,okmy 4mwmaua-tohiflg-he lteptakeiMor-tliere
cut km of the treaty" I put thefi; laft words between,
i-nyeited commas, not as' you fay, " in order to draw
attention" but becaufe they w ere an exaft quotation
from th.e ttaufi ;tion of your lttt-' And when I
added, iiv my report, ' neverthelefs he (the mini ftcf
of his Catliolic majelty) had previoufly informed t)c
Baron de Carondtlet of his f&.:-- a projeded
uirj:.: r.y... o,uui ; ' it was not to prove either
that the Baron had received your letters, or that you
had received his : but as that , very information was af
figned as a reaforr for Jtill retaining and reinforcing
the polts, the obvious concluilorr "Was that you wrote
and tranfmittcd'. to him the information with that
view : and hence, that initead of difclaiming all know
le'dge on the ful jedr, candour mould have induced. yoii':
to anfv.'er me, that although you had not received any
late letter? fiom the Baron, and therefore you could
oot fay what Heps had ac"tua)ly . been taken, for the
evacuation of the .polts, yet that oil account of the
fufpe'ttedT expeuion "fi'o
h ad informed the Baron, you p ref u med ( or-y bu ad v i f--edand
probably you did advifc) thathe yould Hill
hold p.otilffion of thein " to cover Louifiarta." This
"' logic" fir, I hope is inttlligiblj. and at any rate
not " extremely - .ilfe.-';' ." .' "' , '
I cannot omit noticing your obfervations on the
Cth par?grapbof my report. If, as you were obliging
titough to promifeyou had favoured me with eppiea
of the Baron' de Carondekt's two letters, (of which
,yp'.i undertook to give me an oral but literal trahfla- .
tion) -inlttad ot- t.heir iubitance,- 1 nijgiit nave
been more cor reft in recitirg his aflertion That Mir.
Eljicott had not given him notice of his arrival at the
Natchez as the commifioner of the United States for
running the. boundary line. Whether this was a com-
plsiiit, or an obfervation," af you choofe to call it,
every reader of yonr letter wjll fee to be of no conle
quence, But whether the affettion was founded or un
founded, was' material 5 feeing, in the fame-letter, Mr,fc
far as to attfiirpt to get pofitfiion of the Natchez; by
ftfrjjtie V and an : alfertiori follows, that -Governor
Gayofo fays he has in his power documents which
prove 'evit-ently -thg intention of thisfempt
This accufation againll Mr. - Ellicott I cov.fidered as
injurious, not to him only but the government ; for
which1 in the character of commiffioner he was appoint
ecW t-acli1-1 f--liwcfm-ftaiteefl'hdiwcd-mtr-tev-dmjbt
its correclhefs, the other complaint or ' obfer
vation," which I kneA' to. be unfounded, coiild'nbt
but increafe my, doubts. It was important, therefore,
and my duty, to prcfent them togethej: to the Ttefi- .
dent's notice. I have not zv entirely milHken"' this
matter. In my . report "to the : Prefiderit7 I-"did .not
undertake to reeite-whatr.yba.-" mentionedbtit-wltat-
governmeht to refolve on, and to commnnicate to your
' what you are pleaftd to allow to .be fi ; Ldetermi"natc
p. difpdfition olTthis poiht' " ' - - "v-;"""::-"""
,,.1 1 . .In tlie next,fentence (as in many others) you mif-;'-;
feprefent my espreiSpns and'mJfyndcrlland my mean
v Jng.- I do noVhy that fron yonr-riot having given'
..... .-tm; .iiaaiKa monnauoii:.xcipy.CTiny tpe ggpcuitmn, g,iia
irora Uie anlwetyvhich. I received from the Britiih mi-
T iiat -you. connacr- as airotncf cmimeir or otuyt nae
althoirgh on the:2d bf "March ymrw
cions, and three day before you mentioned them, ver
ballyi yet on the 9th, I had nb laid the matter before
the rVeTtdemV I will take the trouble to ffibw with;
ho-vv little reafon you have made this remark.' The zd
of March was the day next preceding the difTolutioh of
Congrtfi; and at the clofe of the feffionthe Prefident
13 QVC;Tvhi-lrnf d vtith bnfmf-f!; fhfit C?PPOt poftpned..
'.1 . 1 . - . 1 t 1 . . -r rr ' ' f
Dn the jd the thea Freflderit's term o"f office expired,
you tfanflated from the BaroU de Carondelet's letters:
y.ou repeated the charge in queftion ; -.and it was not
ti'K then I handed you the copies of the Baroh's and
Mr. Ellicott's correfponiience me wing the. repugnance
of f aft to affert'id'fl arid it) was then that you blufhed;
as I had before been-allonilhed. - And your rem ark
afterwardrwas 'what 1 have ftated in my Tepett,
" That you fuppofed the Baron did not cor.fider Mr.
JEUicotV8j'ctteraofficial.',---Yott-thcni made no diflinc--tion
between . a cornplaint and an ' obfervation,?' nor
ufqd thc phrafe in the' rigouf," nor any" other cjuali-
tlier. evidence of Enitott' appointment -than his letter ,
iirtil they ffiould meet for ;the .purpbfe of-conmenc--ing
the bufmefs of their appointments when of
courfc they wowld-mutually exhibit their cbmmifiiohs.
And frbm thb Barort's anfweTbf : thj l
is plain that he cxpefted no other notice : for he the re
in recognizes Mr. Ellicott as the commiffioner of the
la the lafi.fentence of your paragraph on this fub-
' : - . - ... - . ... . ','-' ' ' ' ' ' ' " ' " '' " "' ' " '"'-" . -. -
.. ' '" . ... . .- . --. . . . ' - mmmmmmgm II I I
;: j --
' ' M.