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FIRST BRITISH STATEMENT.
With a view to the full comprehension of the causes which have given Prefatory Hisrise to the present reference to foreign arbitration of the differences which exist torical Expobetween Great Britain and the United States, relative to that portion of the boundaries of their respective territories, which lies between the British Provinces of Lower Canada and New Brunswick, and the United States, it will be expedient, before the substance of those differences is entered upon, to give a brief historical sketch of the proceedings which have already taken place between the parties themselves respecting them.
Without such preliminary explanation, the references to many portions of those proceedings, which will be occasionally made in the course of this statement, would be scarcely intelligible.
In 1783 Great Britain recognized the independence of the thirteen United States, by a formal Treaty, in one article of which the boundaries of the whole country so recognized were intended and believed to be accurately described and defined.
In the course of the execution of that article, however, the definition of boundaries therein contained was found, in some essential parts, to be imperfect, and differences accordingly arose as to the real intent of some of the terms employed in it.
Some of these differences were adjusted by means of a subsequent Treaty concluded between the two Powers in 1794 ; and some at other times. Those respecting the Boundary from the source of the River St. Croix to the intersection of the parallel of 45° north latitude with the River St. Lawrence, were still unsettled at the period of the breaking out of the war between Great Britain and the United States in 1812.
By the Treaty of peace which terminated that war in 1814, new provisions respecting the disputed Boundaries were agreed upon between the parties. By one of those provisions it was stipulated that Commissioners should be respectively appointed by the Contracting Parties, for the purpose of ascertaining, surveying and finally determining that part of the Boundary above described ; and the decision of those Commissioners thereupon, when given, was to be taken as final and conclusive.
In case, however, they were unable to come to such decision between themselves, it was further provided, that they should make reports, either joint
separate, of their proceedings to the two Governments; and that those reports should be referred to the arbitration of some friendly Sovereign or State.
Prefatory His- Commissioners were accordingly conjointly appointed by the two Powers in torical Expo- 1815-16, who proceeded during several years to survey the disputed country,
and to endeavour to arrange the business entrusted to them. Finding themselves, however, after long discussion and consideration of the case, unable to agree upon many essential points, they made, in 1822, separate reports of their proceedings to both Governments, as enjoined by the Treaty.
Those reports, together with the papers appended to them, being found so voluminous and involved as to afford but little prospect of arriving at a satisfactory issue, if submitted in their actual shape to an arbiter, a new arrangement was entered into by the two Powers, and sanctioned by a Convention concluded between them on the 29th of September 1827, for regulating that reference to arbitration.
By that Convention it was agreed to substitute for the existing reports of the Commissioners fresh respective statements of the entire case, and to annex to those statements such of the existing documents or portions thereof, written or topographical, as each party might think fit; and also to adduce such new
evidence as was by the said Convention mutually agreed upon. Appendix, The Convention in question is hereto annexed.*
Having thus premised in brief historical outline the general circumstances which, from 1783 down to the present period, have marked the progress of this question, the question itself may now be entered upon.
No. 1, p. 1.
In stating the matters of difference between Great Britain and the United Provisions of States, which form the subject of the present reference to arbitration, it will be
advisable, in the outset, to recite all those portions of Treaties on which the points for reference hang, or to which they have immediate relation.
The Treaty of 1783 being the ground-work of the whole question, the Appendix, preamble together with the 1st and 2nd articles of that Treaty claim the first No. 2, p. 4. mention.
They run and provide as follows:
“ It having pleased the Divine Providence to dispose the hearts of the Most “Serene and Most Potent Prince George III, by the Grace of God, King of Great “ Britain, France, and Ireland, Defender of the Faith, Duke of Brunswick and
Lunenburgh, Arch-Treasurer and Prince Elector of the Holy Roman Empire, &c., and of the United States of America, to forget all past misunder
standings and differences that have unhappily interrupted the good correspond“ence and friendship which they mutually wish to restore; and to establish such "a beneficial and satisfactory intercourse between the two countries, upon the
ground of reciprocal advantages and mutual convenience, as may promote and secure to both perpetual peace and harmony; and having for this desirable end
already laid the foundation of peace and reconciliation, by the Provisional “Articles signed at Paris, on the 30th of November, 1782, by the Commissioners
empowered on each part ; which articles were agreed to be inserted in, and to “constitute, the Treaty of Peace, proposed to be concluded between the Crown of
* N. B. In addition to the two Maps, namely the Map A, and Mitchell's Map, officially annexed to the Convention, a separate and detailed transcript of the Map A. (marked Aa) accurately compiled from the surveys made by order of the Commissioners, under the 5th Article of the Treaty of Ghent, iš annexed hereto on the part of Great Britain, for purposes of general illustration of the subjects treated of in the British Statements.