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Taking this for a text, the Diario Español indignantly asked if Mr Soulé feared for his personal safety, and mistrusted the honour of Spaniards. He would have no cause for such apprehension, the paper continued, 46 even if he had been wanting in the respect due to the nation, and had sought by every means to favour projects tending to deprive Spain of her most precious colony: even if it were certain that he had sought to profit by the days of degradation of the Spanish government (under Sartorius), and to take advantage of the insatiable voracity of high and low influences: even if it were certain that he had endeavoured to profane the sanctity of the revolution, and to sow discord amongst the people, seducing the unwary, engaging in a vile intrigue, giving money and promising arms to destroy the power of the honourable and patriotic men who now direct the destinies of Spain: even if he had succeeded in gaining over a few deluded persons who had failed to discern, through the cloud of his honeyed and flattering words, the latent idea of keeping up agitation and disorder in the Peninsula, and so of depriving Cuba of the succours the mothercountry might otherwise send thither: even though the people knew that he had attempted to take advantage of a moment of effervescence traitorously to excite its indignation, and to hurry it to revolt." This was pretty plain speaking. On the same day that the article appeared, Mr Soulé addressed an angry letter to the Diario Español, which did not publish it. The letter afterwards appeared in a French frontier newspaper. The following is a translation of its contents, as given in the Bayonne Messager of the 9th August:

"A Monsieur le Directeur du Diario Español.


Sir,-The tone and character of the article concerning me published in your sheet of this day, too plainly prove the influences that have inspired it for me not to honour it by a word of reply.

"I will never absent myself from any place through fear of being insulted or put in peril by those whom my presence may displease.

"I do not fear impertinence, nor even assassins.

"And especially, Sir, I do not fear the people.

"The people respects what deserves to be respected; it brands only the miserable men who flatter and deceive it. It fights-but it does not assas

"I leave Madrid because it pleases me to leave it, and because I have no account to render to anybody, either of my proceedings or of the motives that determine them.

sinate. "As to the perfidious insinuations of which your article is full, they are beneath my contempt.

"I leave to you the merit of the varnish with which you have covered them, and, to those who dictated them, the infamy of their invention.

"I am, Sir, your Servant,

"MADRID, 30th August, flowery and figurative paragraph had

not entirely passed away at that date, and that the writer of the letter to the dining committee thought it his duty, as the representative of Young America, to contribute his aid to that germination of regeneration which apathetic Spain showed herself tardy in promoting. At the same time, there certainly are not wanting evil-disposed persons, who affirm that Mr Soulé has so concentrated his vision on his adopt

The charges brought by the Diario Español, and to which the above characteristic epistle was the reply, were endorsed to a greater or less extent by public opinion in Madrid. On the 12th of August, Mr Soulé, unable to attend the banquet given by the Press, had addressed to the committee of management a letter, in which occurred the following passage: "The heart of Young America, doubt it not, will palpitate with joy and delight at the breath of the perfumed breeze that shall waft to it across the ocean the acclamations of liberated Spain. May I be permitted to say, that mine is intoxicated with felicity by the hope that Europe, apathetic though it seem, will not suffer those germs of regeneration, which the sublime sacrifice of some of her sons has just so miraculously caused to sprout, to become debilitated, and to die." It is charitably supposed, by those who credit the American minister's participation in the events of the 28th August, that the intoxication referred to in this

ed country, that he can scarcely discern any other; that he looks with contempt upon the herd of slaves who range about Europe, and that to him it would be matter of indifference to see the Old World perish, so that the New World prospered-and, with it, his ambition. It has further been said that, neither prudent nor scrupulous in the means he employed, he condescended assiduously to court that Dowager Queen whose whole life has been a contradiction to the principles he professes, and to admit the society of a yet more illegitimate influence at the Spanish court. It has been declared, and believed by many, that Mr Soulé, knowing that the government of Espartero and O'Donnell was not one that he could either intimidate or buy, and beholding in its character an insurmountable obstacle to the attainment of the great object of his desires, resolved to work for its downfall by every means in his power, and that, notwithstanding his fervent sympathy with the welfare and liberties of Spain, he would have preferred either anarchy or despotism to the triumph of a system which, whilst maintaining those liberties, rendered more and more remote the prospect of realisation of that cherished project, whose accomplishment would introduce a new star" into the celestial vault of Young America," and at the same time vastly add to the importance and popularity in the States of the American minister at Madrid. All these things have been said, and have found wide credence in this capital and elsewhere.

Enough, however, on this branch of the subject. The sum of ten million dollars, demanded by Mr Pierce to make head against the possible contingency of a war with Spain, having been refused him by the American Senate, the probabilities of such a war occurring are greatly diminished, and the Spanish government entertains little apprehension on that score. Upon the other hand, notwithstanding Mr Pierce's declaration in his Message of the 1st August that the whole of the means which the constitution allows to the executive power should be employed to prevent the violation of law, treaties, and in ternational right, contemplated by certain citizens of the United States,

who, as the government was officially and positively informed, were fitting out an expedition for the invasion of Cuba - notwithstanding this assurance, I say, there appear grounds for fearing that, owing perhaps to the weakness of the executive arm in the States, the expedition in question will yet sail for the coveted shores of the Pearl of the Antilles. Whether, if attempted, it will meet the fate of that under Lopez, or whether it will succeed, not only in landing, but in holding its ground until it can receive those reinforcements which would probably flock to it from the Southern States, as soon as it became known there that it had occupied, and was maintaining, a position, is a matter of anxious uncertainty. The island is strongly garrisoned, but American riflemen are formidable opponents. The Spanish government feels confident of the result, and fully reckons on the fidelity and valour of the two or three and twenty thousand good troops now in Cuba. Where the Americans will be most deficient will doubtless be in cavalry and artillery. The Spaniards have a thousand dragoons, several batteries of field-artillery, and numerous large Paixhans guns garnishing the forts and batteries of the island. And although Spanish cavalry, judging from what we see here, is generally but indifferently mounted, it is abundantly able to cope with irregular infantry, and indeed would prove most formidable to the invaders, if they ventured forth from the shelter of forests and hedges, or from the broken ground favourable to sharp-shooters. As to the courage of the men, when well led, there is no doubt of that. Good leading, which they have rarely had, is all that Spaniards want to be as valiant troops as any in Europe. Only the other day, at Vicálvaro, with General Garrigo and other brave and determined officers at their head, regiments of dragoons repeatedly galloped up to the very mouths of batteries, which received them, at a few yards' distance, with volleys of grape. Men who would do this, would hardly flinch from charging irregular riflemen, however accurate and deadly their fire. The Spanish artillery is considered the best arm in the service; it is certainly the one with which the

most pains are taken, and which possesses the best-instructed officers. The infantry now in Cuba is about twenty thousand strong, well disciplined, in good condition, and accustomed to the climate. Were these forces, infantry, cavalry, and artillery, concentrated in the field against the American pirates, it is difficult to believe that the latter could succeed in getting together, or at least in landing, a force capable of resisting their attack. To speak positively on this point, however, it would be necessary to be somewhat in the confidence of the filibusteros, or at least to know more than is positively known of their resources, plans, and places of rendezvous. But even supposing that they muster more than we, in our imperfect information, think probable, it is to be borne in mind that the very best irregular troops, however formidable their valour and skill with their weapons may render them in small numbers, are far less to be feared when they act in large masses. Then the deficiency in discipline and drill tells heavily against them. I am far from underrating the indomitable pluck of the Americans, or their coolness or steadiness when in peril, and only desire to see those valuable qualities displayed in a better cause than the one to which we are assured they are shortly to be devoted. But in an open plain, or in the attack of a fortress, and when opposed to regular troops of average bravery, something more than pluck and coolness is required. Upon the other hand, it must not be forgotten, when we seek to strike the balance of chances, that the garrison of Cuba could not be brought entire into the field. Certain forts, and towns, and positions must be held, and although it is probable that many of these would be left to the keeping of the numerous volunteers that would take up arms the moment an invasion occurred, still portions of the garrison must be detached from the main body. An intelligent Spaniard, who has spent several years in Cuba, and but recently returned thence, gave it me as his opinion that from ten to twelve thousand men could be employed as the army of operation. He estimated the present garrison at rather under

twenty thousand men effective for the field, which is somewhat less than the government estimate. The European Spaniards in the island he believed to be about fifty thousand, a large proportion Basques and Catalans, and who would readily enrol themselves as volunteers in case of peril, would prove formidable antagonists, and fight desperately for their homes and property. As to the native Cubans, many of them would be likely to join the Americans, if these were strong, and gained advantages at first starting; but if the invaders were worsted, the Cubans would fly to arms and vaunt their fidelity to Spain. The negroes, who have no wish to exchange Spanish for American masters, and who are aware of the many disadvantages under which even a free man of colour labours in the States, would all be ready to fight, if arms were given to them. The negro mode of fighting, as described to me by persons who are well acquainted with it, is peculiar and dangerous. They fire a volley, receive the enemy's fire, throw away their muskets, and rush in with cutlass or poniard.

The long narrow shape of the island of Cuba, which bears a strong resemblance to a lizard with the head looking eastward, is favourable to its defenders, since it facilitates the cutting off of the invading force. It will be a great advantage if General Concha's arrival takes place previously to any attack. He is the very man to command under such circumstances. Quick of eye and ready of resource, he will inspire the troops with confidence, and raise the courage of the Cubans. Amongst these he has, what no captain-general of Cuba in our time has had, a strong party-persons who are attached to him, like his mode of administration, prefer him to any other captain-general, and will stand by him to the utmost with all the influence and power they may possess. This is a principal reason why he readily and gladly accepted the destination towards which he is now steaming,—if indeed he has not arrived there, since his departure from Corunna took place upwards of a fortnight ago. The Spanish government and indeed Spaniards generally, as far as my

means of observation extend-entertain a sanguine belief that, with the troops at his command, and with the moral and physical support of the majority of the dwellers on the island, Concha will so handle the intruding annexionists as to make them heartily repent their unprovoked and unjustifiable aggression.

from Spain. To these I suppose we may safely add, as partisans of Cuba's becoming a State of the Union, all the Anglo-Americans resident in the island. Beyond this, I am in possession of no trustworthy evidence; and when I say that only a small portion of the Creoles or native whites are disaffected to the Spanish government, I state it, as you will observe, on Spanish authority, but, at the same time, on the authority of Spaniards long resident in the island, particularly capable, by their position and intelligence, of forming a correct judgment, and the sole drawback to the value of whose opinion is the admissible supposition that it may be biassed by their natural wishes on the subject.

Supposing that, in the autumn of 1854, an American expedition, starting from Florida, or from one of the small islands in the Bahama channel, made a descent upon Cuba, were entirely worsted, and cut off or compelled to re-embark. How long a time would elapse before a third expedition were got ready? Would not the interval probably be shorter than the one between the Lopez expedition and the present date? The dogged tenacity of a certain class of Americans, when bent upon acquisition, is well known. And is it not probable that each expedition would exceed the preceding one in strength, until one went forth strong enough to triumph? The passage of the island from the feeble hands of bankrupt decrepid Spain into the strong ones of the young and vigorous Union, is a mere question of time, unless other nations interfere. Are any prepared to do so? England and France are of course the only powers to which Spain might look for aid to prevent her being robbed of her last valuable colony. And would she not look to them in vain, at least under present circumstances? I do not believe that the Spaniards reckon on such assistance. The reflecting portion of the nation-those who think upon the subject at all-seem convinced that the island must sooner or later pass from them. Some would be disposed to sell it, whilst it still has value, before the Americans feel so certain of getting it by other means that they will no longer feel disposed

There are other points to be taken into consideration when we discuss the probable issue of the anticipated conflict. One of these, on which such conflicting testimony has been given that it is scarcely possible to form a decided opinion with respect to it, is the amount of support the Americans would find in the island itself. The Spaniards, as I have above intimated, think it would be unimportant. Ask a Yankee annexionist, and he will tell you that the whole island, with the exception of the European Spaniards resident in it, pines for release from the intolerable yoke of Spain, longs to hoist the Stripes and Stars, and to cling to the proud neck of the American eagle. I have been told by Americans of the numbers of letters received from inhabitants of Cuba, expressive of these sentiments, and imploring sympathy and assistance. But it must be observed that a few malcontents, or American settlers in the island, would suffice to circulate an immense number of such complaints and prayers. One may imagine, for instance, the consignees of the Black Warrior, after inditing their submissive and penitent letters to the governor-general, and their petition to the Queen of Spain for the remission of the fine, dipping their sharpest iron pen into the ink-bottle, and relieving their afflicted souls by throwing off screaming despatches to their friends in New York and New Orleans, inveighing against the tyranny of Spanish rule, and longing for the day when Cuba should join the Union. By those to whom such letters were welcome, they would naturally be made the most of; they would be handed about, talked of, and their contents verbally repeated, until it would seem as if a hundred letters had arrived instead of one. The Spaniards themselves admit that a art of the Creole population would ad to see the island detached


to disburse. Others, on the contrary, are for holding it to the last, burning the last cartridge before giving in, and, as a last desperate resource, emancipating the slaves. The most rational and profitable of the two courses would doubtless be the sale. And yet, owing to the ignorance and national conceit of a large number of Spaniards - who believe that the valour of Spanish troops must always suffice to guard Cuba, and who have not sufficient knowledge of the past and present history of the world to see that in the course of nature they must lose it-it would be difficult for any ministry to brave the storm of indignation that would here be raised by the sale of the island. It could, of course, under the present regime, be done only with the sanction of the Cortes; and perhaps the wisest thing the Espartero ministry could do would be to bring forward the subject when that body meets in November. To give advice to Spain is, I am aware, a delicate thing for foreign governments to do, but the men at present at the head of affairs here are not likely to mistake the motive, or to take offence at a well-intended counsel. If England and France be quite decided to take no steps towards the preservation of Cuba to Spain, and if the government of this country be not already perfectly aware of that decision, it would be but right to give it the information, so that it might fairly and fully appreciate its position and chances, and not delude itself with vain hopes, never to be realised, of ultimate succour from powerful allies. Assuredly no Spanish government was ever more in want than is the present one of the pecuniary supplies which the sale of Cuba would place at its disposal. The state of the finances of the country is lamentable, and ministers are the more to be pitied, since their embarrassed position is the consequence of no fault of theirs, but of the scandalous misrule and malversation of several preceding governments, and especially of that of Sartorius. The Spanish and English newspapers have already supplied many details on this head. I will content myself with throwing together a few of the principal and most striking facts. When the present

government assumed office, it found an empty treasury, and, even worse than that, the resources on which it might have reckoned for advances were already anticipated. There was no money anywhere. The SartoriusDomenech-Collantes ministry had made a clean sweep of everything. The forced loan decreed on the 19th May, and which was to be paid during the months of June and July, had not flowed in with that gratifying rapidity announced by the organs of the Polaco cabinet; but nevertheless about four hundred and seventy thousand pounds sterling had been collected, out of nearly two millions, which it was estimated that it should yield. Of the £470,000, about £140, or thirteen thousand reals, remained in the treasury. The confusion in the public accounts rendered necessary the appointment of commissioners to investigate them, and to report the real state of the finances. The labours of these commissioners brought to light a whole system of iniquity and of downright robbery. The most shameful jobs had been perpetrated; funds set apart for particular purposes, and which could not legally be otherwise employed, had been misappropriated; enormous amounts had been expended in secret-service money, of which no account was to be found; everything the government had to pay was in arrears, and all they had to receive was in advance. The result of the examination was to exhibit a balance against the treasury amounting to seven millions sterling, of two and a-half millions of which the payment was urgent. To meet this heavy deficiency, equal to half a year's revenue, the new ministry had literally nothing but their good intentions and recognised honestyexcellent things, but not always convertible into specie. The consequences of the revolution added to their embarrassments. Nothing was to be obtained from the provincial treasuries, which were found to be nearly all empty, some of them having been drained to the last real by the departed ministers; whilst in other cases there is reason to conclude that the local juntas, formed during the revolution, had spent the money. During the latter all of

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