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Robert Underwood Johnson, Clarence Clough Buell, Battles and Leaders of the Civil War: Volume 2., Captain Wilkes's seizure of Mason and Slidell. (search)
ard said: If I decide this case in favor of my own Government, I must disavow its most cherished principles, and reverse and forever abandon its essential policy. The country cannot afford the sacrifice. If I maintain those principles, and adhere to that policy, I must surrender the case itself. It will be seen, therefore, that this Government could not deny the justice of the claim presented to us in this respect upon its merits. We are asked to do the British nation just what we have always insisted all nations ought to do to us. Accordingly, on the 1st of January, 1862, the commissioners and their secretaries were placed on board the English vessel Rinaldo, at Province-town, Mass., which had been designated by Lord Lyons to receive them. After a voyage of unusual rigor, during which they were compelled by storms to alter the first plan of going by way of Halifax and to run to Bermuda, the commissioners arrived at Southampton, England, on the 29th of January.--Editors.