WAR DEPARTMENT, November 28, 1864.
Referred to Major General Irvin McDowell, commanding the Department of the Pacific, with directions to take all necessary precautions to prevent the arming or fitting of vessels of war intended to be used in depredations on Frenh commerce.
By order of the Secretary of War:
C. A. DANA.
Assistant Secretary of War.
[Inclosure. - Translation.] LEGATION OF FRANCE TO THE UNITED STATES New York, November 12, 1864.
Honorable WILLIAM H. SEWARD, Secretary of State:
SIR: It would appear, agreeably to the information which has reached the Government of the Emperor from varous quarters, that ex-President Juarez has not abandoned the project of issuing letters of marque against our commerce, and that there are being constructed in the ports of the United States, especially at New Orleans, and San Francisco, vessels destined to cruise for his account. I bring this fact to the knowledge of Your Excellency not supposing, however, that the Federal Government, and it learned it from another source, would not have immediately taken measures to prevent the departure of these vessels, which is announced as very near t hand. If, however, the good faith of the authorities of the United States being overreached, these vessels should take the sea, I must inform you that the Government of His Majesty could not in any case recognize in them the character of privateer. Mr. Juarez cannot hereafter be seriously considered a chief of a government. The supreme authority in Mexico has no longer at this time, and for those who are the least impartial, any other real representative than the sovereign called by events to the head of that country. Mr. Juarez, whatever may have been his former position, has therefore to-day neither the title nor the character to issue letters of marque. Those with which he should attempt to supply American or other vessels being henceforth without value would expose those vessels and their crews to be treated purely and simply as pirates. In instructing me to make this declaration to Your Excellency, the Government of His Majesty has, nevertheless, no other intention than that of enabling that of the United States, to give this notice again in due season to those of its citizens who may have entertained, or who are ready to entertain, propositions of Juarez or those of his agents.
Accept, sir, the assurances of my high consideration.
L. DE GEOFFROY.
OFFICE ACTING ASSISTANT PROVOST-MARSHAL-GENERAL.
OF CALIFORNIA AND NEVADA TERRITORY,
San Francisco, Cal., November 25, 1864
Lieutenant Colonel R. C. DRUM. Assistant Adjutant-General:
SIR: The major-general commanding department having referred to me a communication from Senor Placido Vega* with reference to the seizure of arms, &c., on board the schooner Haze and from different points in this city, that I may report to him with reference to such
*See Vega to McDowell, November 2, p. 1038.