[Inclosure Numbers 1.] OFFICE OF THE SPECIAL AGENT OF THE U. S. TREASURY FOR THE PACIFIC COAST.
CHARLES JAMES, Esq.,
SIR; Your letter of July 19 was handed me by your messenger this afternoon. Your construction of the order of September 4, 1863, may be correct, but it does not so seem to me. The order of November 21, 1862, was intended to meet the peculiar circumstances of the country at that time. We were in the midst of rebellion, to the suppression of directed. We had not arms, ammunition, &c., to meet our wants, and the President very properly and very wisely prohibited the exportation of such as we had. Before the 4th of September 1863, we had imported largely on Government account, and were manufacturing to such an extent that there no longer existed any necessity for the first order, and it was then revoked, or, rather, modified, so as to allow arms to be re-exported to the place of original shipment. Before that time large quantities of arms had been imported on private account, for which there was no demand, and it was, I submit to reach such arms, rather than as a general limitation, that the word "heretofore" was prefixed to the word "imported" in that order. Surely there could be no reason why arms imported before that time should be allowed to be re-exported that would not apply with equal force to arms subsequently imported. There is a familiar maxim of the common law, "Cessante ratione legis, cessat ipsa lex. " The reason for the first order had ceased to exist, and I have no doubt that the arms in question if to be re-exported to the place of original shipment, are entitled to the full benefit of the second order. But I did not propose to discuss this matter with you. My object in this note is simply to correct an error into which you have inadvertently fallen. You say "You (I) informed me (you) that the arms were in fact intended for Mexico. " I made no such statement and gave you no such information.
[Inclosure Numbers 2.] SAN FRANCISCO, July 22, 1864.
Colonel CHARLES JAMES.
Collector of the Port, San Francisco, Cal.:
SIR: Your letter received last evening, though dated July 20, and in reply to mine delivered at your office in presence of M., consul of France, was anticipated in result. I had ceased before receiving it to expect any change in your intentions or sympathy with my views in this matter. I thoroughly appreciate your sensitive and conscientious moral scruples as to the false oath which the captain of the schooner would necessarily have to make in order to perfect the clearance of his vessel, though it might be considered a subject of philosophical discussion as to who was entitled to the most respect, he who committed a crime to save a Republic, or he who cannot be "bullied, wheedled, coaxed, or cajoled" into doing so.
I remain, your obedient servant,
E. F. BEALE.