to pass out by way of the sea, making use of vessels running the blockade, which is dangerous and also very expensive.
The legation of the Emperor, desiring to come to the aid of these French subjects, is disposed, if the Government of the United States sees no objection to it, to send one or two ships of war to one of the Southern ports to receive them and to transfer them to New York. Admiral Reynaud, having been consulted on the question of ways and means, has indicated the port of Charleston as the most proper for this operation in a maritime point of view, Savannah and Wilmington not having water enough for his ships, and he is ready to dispatch one, or two at need, to that port as soon as he shall have received official advice of the assent of the Government of the United States.
[Inclosure Numbers 2. - Translation.]
LEGATION OF FRANCE TO THE UNITED STATES,
Washington, D. C., October 10, 1864.
Honorable WILLIAM H. SEWARD, & c.:
SIR: I receive a fresh letter, an extract from which I hasten to place before your eyes, and which, in picturing to me the distress in which many of the Emperor's subjects find themselves at the South, makes it my duty to press the verbal note I had the honor to address to you on the 3rd of this month, the reception of which Your Excellency acknowledged on the 7th, and in which I suggested to you the sending to Charleston of one or two of His Majesty's ships of war to receive those unfortunates with their families.
There is in this a duty to humanity to fulfill, which accords also, I think, with good policy. I therefore do not doubt that the Government of the United States will give its assent.
I will only take the liberty to observe to Your Excellency that the circumstances are pressing to those poor people. Admiral Reynaud, on his part, would desire not to lose time. Therefore I pray Your Excellency to be so good as to issue for me, with the least delay, the needful orders; and in any case it would be very gratifying to me that you would give me this morning the formal assurance that I would transmit to Paris by the mail of to-day.
Accept, sir, the assurance of my high consideration.
L. DE GEOFROY.
[Sub-inclosure. - Translation.]
Mr. Lanen, vice-consul at Charleston, to the consul-general at New York.
Monsieur the CONSUL-GENERAL:
* * * * * * *
You have, without doubt, seen in the journals that the Governor of Georgia published, toward the close of last month, a proclamation which placed all foreigners in the alternative of enrolling themselves or leaving the State within ten days" time. I went to Milledgeville, but could not obtain from Governor Brown an extension of time in special cases.
Most of the French driven out of Georgia call aloud to get away from the Confederation. Mr. Benjamin and the Confederate Secretary of War reply that they can only pass through the blockade (which costs $ 300 or $ 400 in gold) or to embark in a French ship of war. But none arrives. Why, I know not.