by the French or Imperialists when Brownsville and most of the Rio Grande was held by the rebels. If it was found that rebels had been able to cross and recross the Mexican frontiers at will and go into Matamoras and get whatever they needed, then existing instructions might authorize a corresponding course on our part toward the Liberals. In fact, I do not suppose there is any regulation which prevents either Imperialist of Liberal from crossing the Texas frontier or going into Brownsville to make purchases. If recruiting has been allowed by officers in command, it has been without authority. But American emigration has been invited to Mexico by the Imperialists and I am not aware of any law or order preventing it. As the Liberal Government of Mexico is acknowledged by the United States, no objection can be urged to as many of our citizens as choose going to that country and taking whichever side they like. Whilst the United States hold their present attitude toward Mexican affairs, however, military commanders should not allow either party to recruit soldiers upon our territory. I will give instructions in accordance with these views, if approved of. The second complaint is that "about the end of July last Cortina attacked the steamer Senorita on the river, loaded with cotton taken on board at Camargo and destined for Matamoras. The attack occurred on Texas ground and the captured vessel was made fast to the Texan shore, where she has Remained in possession of the dissenters since the 27th of July. In the course of the same month a convoy of goods was to start for Monterey. Cortina was in Brownsville, heard of it and enlisted men openly to attack it. His armed troops crossed the river, &c. " If this was allowed it was entirely inexcusable on the part of the commander at Brownsville. The whole of these complaints will be referred to Major-General Sheridan, commanding Military Division of the Gulf, with suitable instructions and directions to report the facts as to what has previously passed. I will state, however, that we have a long frontier on the Rio Grande where no U. S. troops are stationed. Either of the belligerents might easily make war upon the other from U. S. soil without it being known to U. S. authority in time to prevent it. I would beg leave to differ with M. de Montholon where he says "it would be difficult for neutrality to be more openly violated," &c. In my opinion, he would not have to go off the Rio Grande nor beyond the events of the last two years to find instances of more flagrant violations of neutrality and where material aid has been given to the rebellion and against the United States.
U. S. GRANT,
WASHINGTON, November 7, 1865.
Major General P. H. SHERIDAN,
Commanding Military Division of the Gulf:
Inclosed I send You a copy of protest sent by M. Montholon, French minister, against alleged violations of neutrality of the Rio Grande and my indorsement thereon. * I wish You would have this matter investigated and report how far these statements are true, and at the same time report such violations of neutrality on the part of French troops as can be substantiated. In this part of the investigation You can go back as far as You please.
U. S. GRANT,
*October 19, p. 1241, and next ante.