Herewith I inclose to you a copy of the material part of sasid letter of Mr. Kavangh. I do not suppose that you could have said, as he intimates, that "you would certainly interfere as soon as he exercised any authority emanating from civil law. " There is no doubt some mistake about this. The instructions of General Wright, dated the 9th of March last, said:
You can say to the American settlers on the portion of the island under the jurisdiction of the United States that they will not be interfered with by the military authorities in any manner whatever. The civil authorities, if duly appointed or elected under the laws governing the Territory of Washington, will be permitted to exercise their legitimate functions.
The only modification of these instructions you have received is Special Orders, No. 129, of 29th of May, 1863, from department headquarters, giving up authority in extraordinary cases to expel American citizens who are disturbes of the peace from the island of San Juan, the exercise of the power to be "reserved for occasions where the preservation of the peace and good order of the island imperatively demand it. " It is plain that the sheriff has exaggerated ideas of the assistance you can give the civil authorities. General Wright desires you not to interfere with the civil authorities. If an offender directed to be arrested by competent civil authority should resist the arrest the sheriff should first call out the usual posse comitatus, and if that fails your assistance could be invoked. As to the collection of taxes upon American citizens I suppose there will be no attempt to levy a tax on the land. As to whether taxes can be lieved on personal property on the disputed island, that is a matter I should leave entirely to the civil and judicial authorities. I take for granted your have never interfered with any voting or voting precinct. I send the sheriff a copy of Special Orders, No. 129, and of General Wright's instructions of the 9th of Mve to request that you will please acknowledge the reception of this letter; also inform me if you received my letter of the 9th of June last. I desire a repot from you on the subject-matter of Mr. Kavanagh's letter; also please state if here is a justice of the peace on the island. There is no objection to there being one if does not himself become a disturber of the peace, as Mr. Hamblet did. As General Wright confides the matters connected with San Juan to me, I have to request full and prompt reports of everything of public interest which may occur. I have no doubt that you have in the very delicate and responsible position in which you have been placed been actuated by a constant desire to preserve the peace. It is to be hoped that the anomals states of things on the disputed territory will cease as soon as possible, but while the Government is so occupied with the civil war which now rages, it is probable that the negiotation will continue to be postponed.
I am, sir very respectfully, your obedient servant,
Brigadier-General, U. S. Volunteers, Commanding District.
HEADQUARTERS DISTRICT OF OREGON, Fort Vancouver, Wash. Ter., September 26, 1863.
Sheriff of Whatcom County, Bellingham Bay, Wash. Ter.:
SIR: Brigadier General George Wright, commanding the Department of the Pacific, San Francisco, has forwarded to me your letter of the 3d