Imágenes de páginas

from Don Juan de Langara, while they were together at Toulon, the knowledge of, and which he conceiled with the greatest care Island of Corsica, — an expedition which he undertook without

This same bad faith the English minister has suffered clearly ta appear by his silence upon the subject of all his negociations with other powers, particularly in the treaty concluded on the 19"' 1I0vcmber 1794, with the United Slates of America, without any regard to my rights, which were well known to him. 1 remarked it again in his repugnance to the adoption of my plans and ideas which might accelerate the termination of the war, and in the vague reply which Lord Grenville gave lo my ambassador, the marquis del Campo, when he demanded succours of him to continue it. He completely confirmed me in the certainty of his bad faith, by the injustice with which he appropriated the rich cargo of the Spanish ship le Sant-Iago, or l'Achille, at first taken by the French and afterwards retaken by the English squadron, and which ought to have been restored to me according to the convention made between my Secretary of State and Lord St Helens, ambassador from His Britannic Majesty; afterwards by the detention of all the ammunition which arrived in the Dutch ships for the supply of my squadrons, by affecting always different difficulties to put off the restitution of them. Finally, I could no longer entertain.a doubt of the bad faith of England, when 1 learnt the frequent landing from her ships upon the coast of Chili and Peru, in order to carry on a contraband trade, and to reconnoitre the shore under the pretence of fishing for whales, a privilege which she pretended to have granted her by the convention ol Nootka. Such were the proceedings of the British minister to cement the ties of friendship and reciprocal confidence, which he had engaged to maintain according to our convention of the 25lh may 1793.

Since I have made peace with the French Republic, not only have I had stronger motives for supposing an intention on the part of England to attack my possessions in America, but 1 have also received direct insults which persuade me that the English minister wishes to oblige me to adopt a part contrary to the interests of humanity, torn by the bloody war which ravages Europe, for the termination of which I have not ceased to offer my good offices, and to testify my constant solicitude.

In fact, England has developed her intentions, has clearly evinced her project of getting possession of my territories, by sending to the Antilles a considerable force, and particularly destined against St Domingo, as the proclamations of her general in that island clearly demonstrate. She has also made known her intentions by the establishments which her commercial companies have formed upon the banks of the Missouri, in South America, with the design of penetrating through those countries to the South Sea. Finally, by the conquest which she has made of the colony of Demerary belonging to the Dutch, and whose advantageous position puts her in a condition to get possession of posts still more important.

But there can no longer remain any doubt of the hostile nature of these projects, when I consider the frequent insults to my flag, the acts of violence committed in the Mediterranian by her fri. gates, which have carried away soldiers coming from Genoa to Barcelona, on board Spanish ships, to complete my armies; the piracies and vexations which the Corsicans and Anglo-Corsican corsairs, protected by the English government of that island, exercise against the Spanish trade in the Mediterranian, and even upon the coasts of Catalonia, and the detention of different Spanish ships laden with Spanish property, and carried to England, under the most frivolous pretences, and especially the rich cargo of the Spanish ship the Minerva, on which an embargo was laid in the most insulting manner to my flag, and the removal of which could not be obtained, though it was demonstrated before the competent tribunals that this rich cargo was Spanish property.

The attack committed upon my ambassador, Don Simon de las Casas, by a tribunal of London, which decreed his arrest, founded upon the demand of a very small sum, winch was claimed by the undertaker of an embarkation. Finally, the Spanish territory has been violated in an intolerable manner upon the coast of Galicia and Alicant by the English ships the Cameleon and the Kanguroo. Moreover, Captain George Vaughan, commodore of the Alarm, behaved in a manner equally insolent and scandalous in the island of Trinity, where he landed with drums beating and flags flying, to attack the French, and to avenge the injuries which he pretended to have received, disturbing, by the violation of the rights of my sovereingnty, the tranquillity of the inhabitants of the island.

By all these insults, equally deepand unparalleled, that nation has proved to the universe, that she recognizes no other laws than the aggrandisement of her commerce; and by their despotism, which has exhausted my patience and moderation, she has forced me, as well to support the honour of my crown, as to protect my people against her attacks, to declare war against the king of England, his kingdom and vassals, and to give orders and take the necessary measures for the defense of my domains and my subjects, and to repulse the enemy.

Signed by the king, and the Secretary of the Concil of War.

Done at the Palace of St Laurenzo, Oct. 5,1796.

On Saturday, the 8th of October, war was proclaimed at Madrid in the usual form.

Articles Of Capitulation for the surrender of the Island Of Trinidad, between his Excellency Sir Ralph Abercromby, K. B., Commander-in-Chief of his Britannic Majesty's Land Forces, Henry Harvey, Esquire, Rear-Admiral of the Red, and Commander-in-Chief of his Britannic Majesty's Ships and Vessels of War, and His Excellency Don Joseph Maria Chacon, knight of the Order of Calatrava, Brigadier of the Royal Navy, Governor and Commander-in-Chief of the Island of Trinidad and its Dependencies, Inspector-General of the Troops of its Garrison, etc., etc.

Art. 1. — The officers and troops of his Catholic Majesty and his allies in the island of Trinidad, are to surrender themselves prisoners of war, and are to deliver up the territory, forts, buildings, arms, ammunition, money, effects, plans and stores, with exact inventories thereof, belonging to his Catholic Majesty; and they are thereby transferred to his Britannic Majesty in the same manner and possession as has been held heretofore by his said Catholic Majesty.

Art. 2. — The troops of his Catholic Majesty are to march out with the honours of war, and to lay down their arms at the distance of 300 paces from the forts they occupy, al five o'clock this evening, the 18th of February.

Art. 3. — All the officers and troops aforesaid of his Catholic Majesty are allowed to keep their private effects, and the officers are allowed to wear their swords.

Akt. 4. — Admiral Don Sebastian Ruiz de Apodaca, being on shore in the island, after having burnt and abandoned his ships, be, with the officers and men belonging to the squadron under his command, are included in this capitulation, under the same terms as are granted to his Catholic Majesty's troops.

Art. 5. — As soon as ships can be conveniently provided for the purpose, the prisoners are to be conveyed to Old Spain, they remaining prisoners of war until exchanged by a cartel between the two nations, or until peace, it being clearly understood that they shall not serve against Great Britain or her allies until exchanged.

Art. 0. — There being some officers among his Catholic Majesty's troops, whose private affairs require their presence at different places of the continent of America, such officers are permitted to go upon their parole to the said places for six months, moie or less, after which period they are to return to Europe; but as the number receiving this indulgence must be limited, his Excellency Don Chacon will previously deliver to the British commanders a list of their names, ranks, and places which they are going to.

Art. 7. — The officers of the royal administration, upon the delivery of stores with which they are charged to such officers as may be appointed by the British commanders, will receive receipts, according to the custom in like cases, from the officers so appointed to receive the stores.

Art. 8. —All the private property of the inhabitants, as well Spaniards as such as may have been naturalized, is preserved tothem.

Art. 9. — All public records are to be preserved in such courts or offices as they are now in; and all contracts and purchases between individuals, which have been done according to the laws of Spain, are to be held binding and valid by the British government.

Art. 10. — The Spanish officers of administration who are possessed of landed property in Trinidad, are allowed to remain in the island, they taking the oaths of allegiance to his Britannic Majesty, and they are further allowed, should they please, to sell or dispose of their property, and to retire elsewhere.

Art. 11. — The free exercise of their religion is allowed to the inhabitants.

Art. 12. — The free coloured people who have been acknowledged as such by the laws of Spain, shall be protected in their liberty, persons and property, like other inhabitants, they taking the oath of allegiance, and demeaning themselves as become good and peaceable subjects of his Britannic Majesty.

Art. 13. — The sailors and soldiers of his Catholic Majesty are, from the time of their laying down their arms, to be fed by the British government, leaving the expence to be regulated by the cartel between the two nations.

Art. 14. — The sick of the Spanish troops will be taken care of, but to be attended and to be under the inspection of their own surgeons.

Art. 13. — All the inhabitants of Trinidad shall, within thirty days from the date hereof, take the oath of allegiance to his Britannic Majesty to demean themselves quietly and faithfully to his government, upon pain, in case of non compliance, of being sent away from the island.

Done at Port d'Espagne, in the island of Trinidad, the 18th day

of February, 1797.

Ralph Abercromby.

Henry Harvey.

Josef Maria CtfACON.

Official Letter from Rear-Admiral Henry Harvey, Commanderin-Chief of his Majesty's Ships and Vessels at Barbados and the Leeward Islands. Dated ofî Port d'Espagne, in the Gulph of Paria, February 21, 1797, to Mr Napean.

Sir, I have the honour to acquaint you, for the information of their lordships, that it having been determined an attack should

« AnteriorContinuar »