The Confederate flag in Havana.
A vessel from a Florida port came in the other day with the Confederate
flag flying as her nationality.
The boat of the Captain-General
immediately came alongside, and required that it should be at once lowered, as it represented no known nation, and the master, who had an American flag ready at hand, hoisted that in place.
He then went to the Vice-Consul
, Mr. Savage
, acting since the departure of Major Helmn
, and presented a register from the Confederated States
The Consul replied he could recognize no such papers: but on the captain representing that he was innocent in the matter, having taken command at the last moment, and the register having been taken out in the name of a previous master, the consul said that if he would make oath that the vessel was owned wholly by citizens of the United States
he would give him a sea-letter, which would enable him to return to any port in the United States
, but that he should retain his register and forward it to Washington
The case was an anomalous one; the owners might be really loyal citizens, but forced in absence of regular United States
officers, to take out Confederate States
papers, and in the absence of any instructions from Washington
, Mr. Savage
hardly felt willing to take the responsibility of entirely refusing to have any thing to do with the vessel, after she had hoisted the United States
flag, and thus of condemning her to lie here, unable to leave, an indefinite time.
Perhaps it would have been better to have assumed the responsibility, and have declined any connection with a vessel that could not prove her right to fly the United States
flag, by her papers.
But for a Vice-Consul
, and so near home, and so easily within reach of instructions, to assume to decide in so grave a case, is a thing that could hardly be expected.
It would certainly seem, however, as if it were very desirable that immediate instructions should be given
by our Government, in regard to such cases.--N. Y. Express, April 27