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was not George Washington writing from Mount Vernon, but the President, who represented the whole country, pointing out to the people of Boston that the day of small things and of local considerations had gone by. This letter served also as a model for many others. The Boston address had a multitude of successors, and they were all answered in the same strain. Washington was not a man to underrate popular feeling, for he knew that the strongest bulwark of the government was in sound public opinion. On the other hand he was one of the rare men who could distinguish between a temporary excitement, no matter how universal, and an abiding sentiment. In this case he quietly resisted the noisy popular demand, believing that the sober second thought of the people would surely be with him; but at the same time the outcry against the treaty, while it could not make him waver in his determination to do what he believed to be right, caused him deep anxiety. The day after he sent his answer to Boston he wrote to Randolph: —

“I view the opposition which the treaty is receiving from the meetings in different parts of the Union in a very serious light; not because there is more weight in any of the objections which are made to it than was foreseen at first, for there is none in some of them, and gross misrepresentations in others; nor as it respects myself personally, for this shall have no influence on my conduct, plainly perceiving, and I am accordingly preparing my mind for it, the obloquy which disappointment and malice are collecting to heap upon me. But I am alarmed at the effect it may have on, and the advantage the French government may be disposed to make of, the spirit which is at work to cherish a belief in them that the treaty is calculated to favor Great Britain at their expense. . . . To sum the whole up in a few words I have never, since I have been in the administration of the government, seen a crisis which, in my judgment, has been so pregnant with interesting events, nor one from which more is to be apprehended, whether viewed on one side or the other.”

He already felt that it might be necessary for him to return to Philadelphia at any moment; and, writing to Randolph to this effect two days later. he said:—

“To be wise and temperate, as well as firm, the present crisis most eminently calls for. There is too much reason to believe, from the pains which have been taken before, at, and since the advice of the Senate respecting the treaty, that the prejudices against it are more extensive than is generally imagined. This I have lately understood to be the case in this quarter from men who are of no party, but well-disposed to the present administration. Nor should it be otherwise, when no stone has been left unturned that could impress on the minds of the people the most arrant misrepresentation of facts; that their rights have not only been neglected, but absolutely sold j that there are no reciprocal advantages in the treaty; that the benefits are all on the side of Great Britain; and, what seems to have had more weight with them than all the rest, and to have been most pressed, that the treaty is made with the design to oppress the French, in open violation of our treaty with that nation, and contrary, too, to every principle of gratitude and sound policy. In time, when passion shall have yielded to sober reason, the current may possibly turn; but, in the meanwhile, this government, in relation to France and England, may be compared to a ship between the rocks of Scylla and Charybdis. If the treaty is ratified, partisans of the French, or rather of war and confusion, will excite them to hostile measures, or at least to unfriendly sentiments; if it is not, there is no foreseeing all the consequences which may follow, as it respects Great Britain. “It is not to be inferred from hence that I am disposed to quit the ground I have taken, unless circumstances more imperious than have yet come to my knowledge should compel it; for there is but one straight course, and that is to seek truth, and pursue it steadily. But these things are mentioned to show that a close investigation of the subject is more than ever necessary, and that there are strong evidences of the necessity of the most circumspect conduct in carrying the determination of government into effect, with prudence, as it respects our own people, and with every exertion to produce a change for the better from Great Britain. “The memorial seems well designed to answer the end proposed, and by the time it is revised and newdressed, you will probably (either in the resolutions which are or will be handed to me, or in the newspaper publications, which you promise to be attentive to) have seen all the objections against the treaty which have any real force in them, and which may be fit subjects for representation in a memorial, or in the instructions, or both. But how much longer the presentation of the memorial can be delayed without exciting unpleasant sensations here, or involving serious evils elsewhere, you, who are at the scene of information and action, can decide better than I. In a matter, however, so interesting and pregnant with consequences as this treaty, there ought to be no precipitation; but on the contrary, every step should be explored before it is taken, and every word weighed before it is uttered or delivered in writing. “The form of the ratification requires more diplomatic experience and legal knowledge than I possess, or have the means of acquiring at this place, and therefore I shall say nothing about it.”

Three days later, on August 3d, he wrote again to Randolph to say that the mails had been delayed, and that he had not received the Baltimore resolutions. He then continued: —

“The like may be expected from Richmond, a meeting having been had there also, at which Mr. Wythe, it is said, was seated as moderator; by chance more than design, it is added. A queer chance this for the chancellor of the state.

“All these things do not shake my determination with respect to the proposed ratifications, nor will they, unless something more imperious and unknown to me should, in the judgment of yourself and the gentlemen with you, make it advisable for me to pause.”

A few days later Washington was recalled by a letter from Randolph, and also by a private note from Pickering, which said, mysteriously, that there was a “special reason” for his immediate return. He had been expecting to be recalled at any moment, and he now hastened to Philadelphia, reaching there on August 11th. He little dreamed, however, of what had led his two secretaries, one ignorantly and the other wittingly, to hasten his return. On the very day when he dated his letter to the selectmen of Boston as from the United States, the British minister placed in the hands of Mr. Wolcott, the Secretary of the Treasury, an intercepted letter from Fauchet, the French minis, ter, to his own government. This despatch, bear, ing the number 10, had come into the possession of Mr. Hammond by a series of accidents; but the British government and its representatives were quick to perceive that the chances of the sea had thrown into their hands a prize of much more value than many French merchantmen. The despatch thus rescued from the water, where its bearer had cast it, was filled with a long and somewhat imagi, native dissertation on political parties in the United States, and with an account of the whiskey rebellion. It also gave the substance of some conversations held by the writer with the Secretary of State. This is not the place, nor would space serve, to examine the details of this famous despatch, with reference to the American statesman whom it incriminated. On its face it showed that Randolph had held conversations with the French minister which no American Secretary of State ought to have held with any representative of a foreign government, and it appeared further that the most obvious interpretation of certain sentences, in view of the readiness of man to think ill of his neighbor,

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