War of the Rebellion: Serial 116 Page 0496 PRISONERS OF WAR AND STATE, ETC.

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[Sub-inclosure Numbers 14.]

DEPARTMENT OF STATE, Washington, February 4, 1862.

HORATIO J. PERRY, Esq., Madrid.

SIR: Your dispatch of January 8 (Numbers 21) has been received.

you will express to Mr. Calderon Collantes the satisfaction with which the President has learned that the American citizens carried as despoiled and plundered captives into the port of Cadiz by the insurgent pirates were restored to the protection of our flag.

I suspend further instructions concerning the admission of the Sumter into Cadiz until the final decision of the Government concerning her demand to be allowed to repair shall be known. Meantime I trust Mr. Calderon Collantes will not think it unreasonable on my part when I ask the Spanish Government to consider whether the toleration shown to the insurgents as a belligerent has not already been proved as injurious to the general interest of commerce and of civilization as it was unnecessary.

Why should we be obliged to send ships of war to protect our commerce in European waters against insurgents who have neither possessionof nor control over a single outlet from our own coast?

Would Spain think hersel justly treated if we should harbor buccaneers escaped from Havana or Porto Rico?

This toleration of pirates, sufficinetly unreasonable when extended by other powers, seems of all others most unnatural on the part of Spain. Whose commrce suffers but that of the American people? Why does it suffer this outrage? Because the American people refused their sanction to the attempts of those who now are the insurgents to divest Spain of her island colonies in the Caribeean Sea. If this insurrection could prevail and become an independent maritime power how of the rapacity which we have rebuked at the cost of attempted revolution? Why shall not Spain, emulous of a new and beneficent and glorious career, seize the pre-eminence of being the first of the maritime power to retrace the hasty step of last June and close her ports against those who are exasperated against their own Government because it will not lend itself to their own evil aggressive designs against Spain and their war against human nature?

I am, sir, your obedient servant,

WILLIAM H. SEWARD.

[Sub-inclosure Numbers 15.]

CONSULATE OF THE UNITED STATES,

Gibraltar, February 7, 1862

The POLICE MAGISTRATE, Gibraltar.

SIR: The accompanying two seamen have just called at this consulate claiming the protection of the United States Government and stating that they do not wish to return on board the Sumter to which vessel they belonged. They will relate their own tales to you and I beg respectfully to solicit for these men all the privileges which a neutral port can afford them.

I am, sir, your obedient servant,

HORATIO J. SPRAGUE.

U. S. Consul.