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[231] brought into port. Many others were ransomed, and some were burned at sea.

Prescribed limits will not permit me to follow out in detail the past history of the United States as a neutral power. It must suffice to recall the memory of readers to a few significant facts in our more recent history:

The recognition of the independence of Greece in her struggle with Turkey, and the voluntary contributions of money and men sent to her; the recognition of the independence of the Spanish provinces of South America, and the war vessels equipped and sent from the ports of the United States to Brazil during the struggle with Spain for independence; the ships sold to Russia during her war with England, France, and Turkey; the arms and munitions of war manufactured at New Haven, Connecticut, and Providence, Rhode Island, sold and shipped to Turkey to aid her in her late struggle with Russia.

The reader will observe the promptitude with which the government of the United States not only accorded belligerent rights, but, even more, recognized the independence of nations struggling for deliverance from oppressive rulers. The instances of Greece and the South American republic are well known, and that of Texas must be familiar to everyone. One could scarcely believe, therefore, that the chief act of hostility, or rather, the great crime of the government of Great Britain in the eyes of the government of the United States, was the recognition by the latter of the Confederate States as a belligerent power, and that a state of war existed between them and the United States. This was the constantly repeated charge against the British government in the dispatches of the United States government from the commencement of the war down nearly to the session of the Geneva Conference in 1872. In the correspondence of the Secretary, in 1867, he says:

What is alleged on the part of the United States is, that the Queen's proclamation, which, by conceding belligerent rights to the insurgents, lifted them up for the purpose of insurrection to an equality with the nation which they were attempting to overthrow, was premature because it was unnecessary, and that it was, in its operation, unfriendly because it was premature.

Again he says, and, if sincerely, shows himself to be utterly ignorant of the real condition of our affairs:

Before the Queen's proclamation of neutrality, the disturbance in the United States was merely a local insurrection. It wanted the name of war to enable it to be a civil war and to live, endowed as such, with maritime and other belligerent rights. Without the authorized name, it might die, and was expected not to live and be a flagrant civil war, but to perish a mere insurrection.

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