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The history of those treaties and the consequences of noncompliance with them by the Government are so clearly set forth in this statement that I deem it better to communicate it in full than to ask the necessary appropriation in a shorter statement of the reasons for it. I earnestly desire that if an Indian war becomes inevitable the Government of the United States at least should not be responsible for it. Pains will be taken, and force used if necessary, to prevent the departure of the expeditions referred to by the Secretary of the Interior.


WASHINGTON, March 1o, 1870. To the Senate of the United States:

In answer to the resolution of the Senate of the 4th instant, in relation. to the “Transcontinental, Memphis, El Paso and Pacific Railroad Company," I transmit reports from the Secretary of State and the Secretary of the Interior, with accompanying papers.


WASHINGTON, March 10, 1870., To the Senate of the United States:

I transmit to the Senate, in answer to their resolution of the 28th ultimo, a report * from the Secretary of State, with accompanying documents.



Washington, D. C., March 14, 1870. To the Senate of the United States:

In reply to your resolution of the 14th of February, requesting to be informed whether I desire that any of the Indian treaties now pending before you be considered confidentially, I have to inform you that there are none of them which I object to having discussed in open session.


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Washington, D. C., March 14, 1870. To the Senate of the United States:

I would respectfully call your attention to a treaty now before you for the acquisition of the Republic of St. Domingo, entered into between the agents of the two Governments on the 29th of November, 1869, and by its terms to be finally acted upon by the people of St. Domingo and the Senate of the United States within four months from the date of signing

* Relating to legislation necessary to insure the administration of justice and the protection of American interests in China and Japan,

the treaty. The time for action expires on the 29th instant, a fact to which I desire expressly to call your attention. I would also direct your notice to the fact that the Government of St. Domingo has no agent in the United States who is authorized to extend the time for further deliberation upon its merits.

The people of St. Domingo have already, so far as their action can go, ratified the treaty, and I express the earnest wish that you will not permit it to expire by limitation. I also entertain the sincere hope that your action may be favorable to the ratification of the treaty.


WASHINGTON, March 15, 1870. To the Senate of the United States:

I transmit a report from the Secretary of State, in answer to a resolution of the Senate of the 3d instant, asking to be informed what States have ratified the amendment known as the fifteenth amendment to the Constitution of the United States, so far as official notice thereof has been transmitted to the Department of State, and that information from time to time may be communicated to that body, as soon as practicable, of such ratification hereafter by any State.



Washington, D. C., March 23, 1870. To the Senate and House of Representatives:

In the Executive message of December 6, 1869, to Congress the importance of taking steps to revive our drooping merchant marine was urged, and a special message promised at a future day during the present session, recommending more specifically plans to accomplish this result. Now that the committee of the House of Representatives intrusted with the labor of ascertaining “the cause of the decline of American commerce" has completed its work and submitted its report to the legislative branch of the Government, I deem this a fitting time to execute that promise.

The very able, calm, and exhaustive report of the committee points out the grave wrongs which have produced the decline in our commerce. It is a national humiliation that we are now compelled to pay from twenty to thirty million dollars annually (exclusive of passage money, which we should share with vessels of other nation's) to foreigners for doing the work which should be done by American vessels, American built, American owned, and American manned. This is a direct drain upon the resources of the country of just so much money, equal to casting it into the sea, so far as this nation is concerned.

A nation of the vast and ever-increasing interior resources of the


United States, extending, as it does, from one to the other of the great oceans of the world, with an industrious, intelligent, energetic population, must one day possess its full share of the commerce of these oceans, no matter what the cost. Delay will only increase this cost and enhance the difficulty of attaining the result.

I therefore put in an earnest plea for early action in this matter, in a way to secure the desired increase of American commerce. The advanced period of the year and the fact that no contracts for shipbuilding will probably be entered into until this question is settled by Congress, and the further fact that if there should be much delay all large vessels contracted for this year will fail of completion before winter sets in, and will therefore be carried over for another year, induces me to request your early consideration of this subject.

I regard it of such grave importance, affecting every interest of the country to so great an extent, that any method which will gain the end will secure a rich national blessing. Building ships and navigating them utilizes vast capital at home; it employs thousands of workmen in their construction and manning; it creates a home market for the products of the farm and the shop; it diminishes the balance of trade against us precisely to the extent of freights and passage money paid to American vessels, and gives us a supremacy upon the seas of inestimable value in case of foreign war.

Our Navy at the commencement of the late war consisted of less than 100 vessels, of about 150,000 tons and a force of about 8,000 men. We drew from the merchant marine, which had cost the Government nothing, but which had been a source of national wealth, 600 vessels, exceeding 1,000,000 tons, and about 70,000 men, to aid in the suppression of the rebellion.

This statement demonstrates the value of the merchant marine as a means of national defense in time of need.

The Committee on the Causes of the Reduction of American Tonnage, after tracing the causes of its decline, submit two bills, which, if adopted, they believe will restore to the nation its maritime power. Their report shows with great minuteness the actual and comparative American tonnage at the time of its greatest prosperity; the actual and comparative decline since, together with the causes; and exhibits all other statistics of material interest in reference to the subject. As the report is before Congress, I will not recapitulate any of its statistics, but refer only to the methods recommended by the committee to give back to us our lost commerce.

As a general rule, when it can be adopted, I believe a direct money subsidy is less liable to abuse than an indirect aid given to the same enterprise. In this case, however, my opinion is that subsidies, while they may be given to specified lines of steamers or other vessels, should not be exclusively adopted, but, in addition to subsidizing very desirable

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Cuba has played a large and interesting part in our history from the very earliest days. The article “Cuba," in the Encyclopedic Index, succinctly presents the salient facts regarding her natural resources, her history and her present condition. She was a bone of contention in our domestic politics. The South, represented by the Democratic party, was bent on annexing her; proffers were made of money to insolvent Spain, only to be spurned; if gold will not buy, force of arms must conquer, was the motto. With the encouragement of the South, filibustering expeditions were fitted out, and with the connivance of traitorous Southern agents of the Federal Government, escaped the vigilance of our cruisers only to be snapped up by the watchful Spaniards. Such violations of our treaties were likely to bring on war; far from dreading such a result, the South would have welcomed it with glee, for then the doctrine of "manifest destiny" with which they sought to palliate our unjust war on Mexico, would cloak the robbing of Cuba from Spain. Why did the South want Cuba? Simply because if annexed two or three new slave states could be created, four or six new slave Senators be elected, and their vanishing domination in Congress be restored. The illustrations are contemporary and truthful representations of scenes in the Cuban insurrection of 1868–1877. The post-bellum view of Cuban affairs will be found by consulting the discussions of the matter by the Presidents from Grant to McKinley, on the pages cited by the index under the heading “ Cuba." On page 2701 President Fillmore states the reasons against annexation, and on page 3041 President Buchanan recommends it.

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