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Admiral David D. Porter, The Naval History of the Civil War., Chapter 7: the Trent affair. (search)
(when released) with the wildest enthusiasm. They both were too well posted not to know the tenacity with which the British people hold on to an idea, particularly the idea that when a man or a number of men seek the protection of the English flag, he or they cannot be taken from under its folds by force of arms on the high seas without a swift demand from the British Government for ample reparation. It is an idea that does honor to the British nation, and is one that her descendants in America have cherished since 1812, when the United States went to war with England, determined to resist the right of search which the English ships-of-war claimed the right to exercise over American vessels upon the high seas. Thoughtful people saw in the act of Captain Wilkes nothing to approve of. On the contrary, they could only see trouble ahead, unless the Federal Government should at once disavow the act of that officer, and restore Messrs. Mason and Slidell and the attaches to their libe