Copyright
Andrew Dickson White.

Autobiography of Andrew Dickson White (Volume 2) online

. (page 1 of 54)
Online LibraryAndrew Dickson WhiteAutobiography of Andrew Dickson White (Volume 2) → online text (page 1 of 54)
Font size
QR-code for this ebook


A*




AUTOBIOGRAPHY

OF

ANDREW D. WHITE



VOLUME II




<Z7Ctza<i<0',
<7



AUTOBIOGRAPHY



OF



ANDREW DICKSON WHITE



WITH PORTRAITS



VOLUME II




NEW YORK

THE CENTURY CO.

1905






Copyright, 1904, 1905, by
THE CENTURY Co.



Published March, 1905



THE DE VINNE PRESS



TABLE OF CONTENTS



PART V IN THE DIPLOMATIC SERVICE (Continued)
CHAPTER XXXIII. As MINISTER TO RUSSIA 1892-1894

PAGE

Appointment by President Harrison. My stay in London. Lord Rothschild ;
his view of Russian treatment of the Jews. Sir Julian Goldschmidt ; impres-
sion made by him. Paris ; the Vicomte de Vogue" ; funeral of Renan ; the
Duke de la Rochefoucauld. Our Minister, William Walter Phelps, and others
at Berlin; talk with Count Shuvaloff. Arrival in St. Petersburg. Deaden-
ing influences ; paralysis of energy as seen on the railways ; little apparent
change in externals since my former visit ; change wrought by emancipation
of the serfs. Improvement in the surroundings of the Emperor. Visit to
the Foreign Office. Presentation to Alexander III ; his view of the Behring
Sea Question ; his acquiescence in the American view ; his allusion to the
Chicago Exposition. My conversation with the Archbishop of Warsaw. Con-
versation with the Empress; her reference to the Rev. Dr. Talmage. Im-
pression made upon me by the Emperor. My presentation to the heir to the
Throne, now the Emperor Nicholas II ; his evident limitations ; main cause
of these. Presentation to sundry Grand Dukes. A reminiscence of the Grand
Duke Michael. The Grand Dukes Vladimir and Alexis. The diplomatic
corps. General von Schweinitz. Sir Robert Morier; his victory over the
United States at the Paris Arbitration Tribunal ; its causes ; its lessons . , 3



CHAPTER XXXIV. INTERCOURSE WITH RUSSIAN
STATESMEN 1892-1894

Last days of Sir Robert Morier at St. Petersburg ; his last appearance at
Court. Count de Montebello. Husny Pasha. Maroehetti. Count Wolken-
stein. Van Stoetwegen and his views regarding peace in Europe. Pasitch,
the Servian Minister ; his two condemnations to death. Contrast between
the Chinese and Japanese representatives. Character of Russian statesmen ;
their good qualities ; their main defects. Rarity of first-class men among
them ; illustrations of this view from The Hague peace programme and from
Russian dealings with Finland and with the Baltic Provinces. M. de Giers ;
his love of peace ; strong impression made by him on me. Weakness and
worse of Russia in the Behring Sea matter. Finance Minister De Witte ; his
strength ; his early history. Difference in view between De Witte and his
predecessor Wischniegradsky. Pobedonostzeff. Dournovo. My experience



vi TABLE OF CONTENTS

PAGK

with the latter. The shirking of responsibility by leading Russian officials ;
their lack of enterprise. An exception ; Plehve. One good example set us
by Russia ; value placed on Russian, compared with the cheapening and
prostitution of American, citizenship 22



CHAPTEE XXXV. "ALL SOKTS AND CONDITIONS OF
MEN" IN RUSSIA 1892-1894

The " Minister of Public Enlightenment," Delyanoff ; his theory and system.
Hostility of sundry Russians to the Russian-Germans ; evident folly of this.
Woronzoff-Daschkoff and General Annenkoff. The Caucasian railways and
the annexation of Bokhara. Galkin Wraskoy and the prison system. Orloff
Davidoff ; " the funniest thing he saw in America." Professor Demetrieff's
account of the murder of Peter III and of the relation of Catherine II to it.
Prince Serge Wolkonsky ; his ability and versatility ; his tour de force at the
farewell dinner given me at St. Petersburg ; his lectures in the United States.
Russian scientific men. Woeikoff. Admiral Makharoff. Senator SemenofC
and Prince Gregory Galitzin. Mendel&eff. Two salons. Other attractions.
General Ignatieff. Princess Ourousoff and her answer to Alexander III.
Princess Radzivill. The copy-book used by Louis XIV when a child, pre-
served in the Imperial Library; its historical importance. The American
colony at St. Petersburg. Mr. Prince ; his reminiscences of sundry American
ministers. Mr. Buchanan's satire on spies, in the Embassy Archives. Diffi-
culties of the American Representative arising from his want of a habitation.
Diplomatic questions between the two countries The Behring Sea Fisher-
ies. My dealings with the Commandant of the Russian Pacific Islands. Suc-
cess of Sir Robert Morier ; how gained. Worldly wisdom of Great Britain.
Difficulties regarding Israelites ; my long despatch on the subject to Secretary
Gresham. Adventurous Americans. Efforts to prostitute American citizen-
ship. Difficulties arising from the complicated law of the Empire. Viola-
tions of the Buchanan Treaty. Cholera at St. Petersburg ; thorough mea-
sures taken by the Government ; death of Tschaikovsky ; difficulty in imposing
sanitary regulations upon the peasantry . . , , .... 41



CHAPTER XXXVI. MY RECOLLECTIONS OF POBEDO-
NOSTZEFF 1892-1894

My desire to know Pobedonostzeff ; his history; his power. Public business
which led to our meeting ; his characteristics ; reasons for his course ; his
view of the relations of the Russo-Greek Church to the Empire ; his frank-
ness in speaking of the Church. His hostility to Western civilization. His
discussion of revolutionary efforts in Russia. His theory of Russian public
instruction. His ultra-reactionary views. His mingled feelings regarding
Tolstoi. His love for American literature ; his paradoxical admiration for
Emerson ; his translation of Emerson's "Essays " ; his literary gift. Feeling *
toward him in Russian society. His religious character. His esthetic char-
acter. Charles A. Dana's impression of him. Our discussion of possible
relations between the Russian and English Churches ; his talks upon intro-
ducing the " Holy Orthodox Church" into the United States. His treatment
of hostile articles in the English Reviews. His professorial friends. His
statements regarding Father Ivan ; miracles by the latter ; proofs of their
legendary character ; PobedonostzefTs testimony on the subject 55



TABLE OF CONTENTS vii

CHAPTER XXXVII. WALKS AND TALKS WITH TOLSTOI
MAECH, 1894

PAGE

Moscow revisited. Little change for the better. First visit to Tolstoi
Curious arrangement of his household. Our first discussions ; condition of
the peasants; his view of Quakers; their "want of logic." His view of
Russian religious and general thought. Socrates as a saint in the Kremlin.
His views of the Jews ; of Russian treatment of prisoners. His interest in
American questions. Our visit to the Moscow Museum ; his remark on the
pictures for the Cathedral of Kieff ; his love for realistic religious pictures ;
his depreciation of landscape painting; deep feeling shown by him before
sundry genre pictures. His estimate of Peter the Great. His acknowledg-
ment of human progress. His view of the agency of the Czar in maintain-
ing peace. His ideas regarding French literature ; of Maupassant ; of Balzac.
His views of American literature and the source of its strength ; his discus-
sion of various American authors and leaders in philanthropic movements ;
his amazing answer to my question as to the greatest of American writers.
Our walks together; his indiscriminate almsgiving; discussion thereupon.
His view of travel. The cause of his main defects. Lack of interchange of
thought in Russia ; general result of this. Our visit to the Kremlin. His
views of religion ; questions regarding American women ; unfavorable view
of feminine character. Our attendance at a funeral ; strange scenes. Fur-
ther discussion upon religion. Visit to an "Old Believer"; beauty of his
house and its adornments ; his religious fanaticism ; its effects on Tolstoi.
His views as to the duty of educated young men in Russia. Further discus-
sion of American literature. His hope for Russian progress. His manual
labor. His view of Napoleon. His easy-going theory of warlike operations.
Our farewell. Estimate of him. His great qualities. His sincerity. Cause
of his limitations. Personal characteristics related to these. Evident evolu-
tion of his ideas. Effect of Russian civilization on sundry strong men ... 72

CHAPTER XXXVIII. OFFICIAL LIFE IN ST. PETERSBURG
1892-1894

Difficulty in securing accurate information in Russia ; the censorship of
newspapers and books ; difficulty in ascertaining the truth on any question ;
growth of myth and legend in the Russian atmosphere of secrecy and repres-
sion. Difficulties of the American Minister arising from too great proneness
of Americans to believe Russian stories ; typical examples. American adven-
turers ; a musical apostle ; his Russian career. Relation of the Legation to
the Chicago Exposition ; crankish requests from queer people connected with
it ; danger of their bringing the Exposition into disrepute ; their final suppres-
sion. Able and gifted men and women scattered through Russian society.
Russian hospitality. Brilliant festivities at the Winter Palace ; the Blessing
of the Waters; the "palm balls"; comparison of the Russian with the Ger-
man Court. Visit of Prince Victor Napoleon to St. Petersburg ; its curious
characteristics. Visit of the Ameer of Bokhara ; singular doings of his son
and heir. Marriage of the Grand Duchess Xenia ; kindness, at the Peterhof
Palace, of an American " Nubian." Funeral of the Grand Duchess Catherine ;
beginnings of the Emperor's last illness then evident. Midnight mass on
Easter eve ; beauty of the music. The opera. Midnight excursions in the
northern twilight. Finland and Helsingfors. Moscow revisited. Visit to the
Scandinavian countries. Confidence reposed in me by President Cleveland.
My resignation 101



viii TABLE OF CONTENTS

CHAPTER XXXIX. As MEMBER OF THE VENEZUELAN
COMMISSION 1895-1896

PAGE

The Venezuelan Commission ; curious circumstances of my nomination to it
by President Cleveland. Nature of the question to be decided ; its previous
evolution. Mr. Cleveland's message. Attacks upon him; his firmness.
Sessions of the Commission ; initial difficulties ; solution of them. The old
question between the Netherlands and Spain. Material at our command.
Discreditable features of the first British Blue Book on the subject ; British
" fair play " in this and in the Bearing Sea question. Distribution of duties
in the Commission. My increased respect for Lord Aberdeen ; boundary line
accepted by him ; striking confirmation of his justice and wisdom by the Ar-
bitration Tribunal at Paris. Triumph of President Cleveland and Secretary
Olney. Men whom I met in Washington. Lord Pauncefote. Secretary
Carlisle ; striking tribute to Tiim by an eminent Republican ; his characteris-
tics. Vice-President Stevenson ; his powers as a raconteur. Senator Gray
and Mr. Olney. Visit with the American Geographical Society to Monticello ;
curious evidences there of Jefferson's peculiarities; beauty of the place.
Visit to the University of Virginia. My increasing respect for the qualities
of Mr. Cleveland . 117



CHAPTER XL. As AMBASSADOR TO GERMANY 1897-1903

Nomination by President McKinley. Light thrown upon his methods by
appointments of second secretary and military attache. Secretary Sherman ;
his reference to President Johnson's impeachment. Judge Harlan's refer-
ence to Dr. Burchard's alliteration. Discussions with the German ambassa-
dor and others. Change of the American legation into an embassy ; its ad-
vantages and disadvantages. First interview with Emperor William II ;
subjects discussed. His reference to Frederick the Great's musical powers.
The Empress ; happy change in the attitude of the people toward her. The
Chancellor of the Empire ; Prince Hohenlohe ; his peculiarities ; his refer-
ences to Bismarck ; his opinion of Germans. Count von Billow, Minister of
Foreign Affairs ; resemblances between him and his father ; his characteristics
as minister and as parliamentary leader. Ambassadorial receptions ; difficul-
ties ; mistaken policy of our government regarding residences for its repre-
sentatives. Change in German public opinion toward the United States since
my ministerial days ; its causes ; evidences of it during Spanish War. Mis-
representations in German and American papers, and their effects; our own
culpability as shown in the Fessenden case. International questions ; Hai-
tian theory of the Monroe Doctrine. The Samoan question ; furor consularis;
missionary squabbles; reasonableness of Minister von Billow. Attendance
at Parliament ; its characteristics ; notes on sundry members ; Posadowski ;
Richter; Bebel; Barth. The German Parliament House compared with the
New York State Capitol 131



CHAPTER XLI. AMERICA, GERMANY, AND THE SPANISH
WAR 1897-1903

The Chinese question ; German part in it ; my duties regarding it ; course of
President McKinley and Secretary Hay. The exclusion of American insur-
ance companies ; difficulties. American sugar duties : our wavering policy.
The "meat question"; American illustration of defective German policy.



TABLE OF CONTENTS ix

PAGE

The "fruit question" and its adjustment. The Spanish- American War;
attitude of the German press ; my course under instructions ; importance of
delaying the war ; conference in Paris with Ambassador Porter and Minister
Woodford ; the destruction of the Maine and its effect ; conversation with
the Emperor regarding it ; his view of it. My relations with the Spanish
ambassador. Visit to Dresden to present the President's congratulations to
the Saxon king; curious contretemps; festivities. Change in character of
European monarchs since Jefferson's letter to Langdon. The King of Wiir-
temberg and Grand Duke of Baden. Notes on sundry pretenders to Euro-
pean thrones. Course of German Government during our Spanish War;
arrest of Spanish vessel at Hamburg. Good news at the Leipsic Fourth of
July celebration. Difficulties arising in Germany as the war progressed.
The protection of American citizens abroad ; prostitution of American citi-
zenship ; examples ; strengthening of the rules against pretended Americans ;
baseless praise of Great Britain at the expense of the United States. Duty
of the embassy toward American students ; admission of women to the Ger-
man universities. Efforts of various compatriots to reach the Emperor;
psychological curiosities. Changes in Berlin since my former official resi-
dence ; disappearance of many strong men ; characteristics of sundry survi-
vors ; Mommsen ; Harnack 157



CHAPTER XLIL AMERICA, GERMANY, AND THE CHINESE
WAR 1899-1902

Ex-President Harrison visits Berlin ; attention shown him by the .Emperor
and others ; change in him since his Washington days. Difficulty regarding
embassy quarters ; moral. Bicentenary of the Royal Academy of Sciences ;
pomp and ceremony; picturesque appearance of delegates; conversation
with the Emperor on the subject ; his jocose statement of his theory of the
monarchy. Coming of age of the heir to the throne ; reception of the Em-
peror of Austria-Hungary ; gala opera and opinion of the Chinese minister
regarding it ; banquet ; speeches of the two Emperors. Characteristics of
the Emperor Franz Josef; conversation with him; his views of American
questions; prospects of his Empire. Visit from the German- American
Kriegerverein. Outbreak of the revolution in China ; American policy ;
commendation of it from foreign source ; my duties relating to it. Fourth
of July speech at Leipsic in 1900. Visit to America ; torrid heat at Washing-
ton ; new revelation of President McKinley's qualities ; his discussion of
public affairs. Two-hundredth anniversary of the Prussian kingdom ; cele-
bration ; my official speech ; religious ceremonies ; gala opera ; remark upon
it by the French ambassador. A personal bereavement. Vacation studies
on Fra Paolo Sarpi. Death of the Empress Frederick ; her kindness to me
and mine ; conversations ; her reminiscences of Queen Victoria's relations to
American affairs ; her funeral 181



CHAPTER XLIII. CLOSING YEARS OF MY EMBASSY.

BERLIN, YALE, OXFORD, AND ST. ANDREWS 1901-1903

Assassination of President McKinley; its effect on German feeling. My
peculiar relations with the Chinese minister at Berlin ; our discussions ; my
advice to China through him ; visits from and to Prince Chun, on his expia-
tory errand. Visit to Mr. Andrew Carnegie at Skibo Castle ; evidences of
kindly British feeling regarding the death of President McKinley seen during



TABLE OF CONTENTS

PAGE

this English and Scotch journey ; life at Skibo. America revisited ; Bicen-
tenary at Yale. Am chosen to honorary membership in the Royal Academy
of Sciences at Berlin. Interview with the Emperor on my return from
America ; characteristics of his conversation ; his request to President Roose-
velt on New Year's day, 1902. Emperor's dinner to the American Embassy ;
departure of Prince Henry for the United States; the Emperor's remarks
upon the purpose of it. The American " open door " policy ; my duties regard-
ing it. Duties regarding St. Louis Exposition ; difficulties. Short vacation in
Italy ; my sixth visit to Venice and new researches regarding Father Paul ;
Dr. Alexander Robertson. Return to Berlin ; visit of the Shah of Persia and
the Crown Prince of Siam. Am presented by the Emperor to the Crown Prin-
cess of Saxony; her charming manner and later escapade. Work with President
Gilman in behalf of the Carnegie Institution for Research, at Washington.
Death of King Albert of Saxony ; attendance, under instructions, at his fu-
neral ; impressive ceremonial, and long sermon. The new King ; impres-
sion made by his conversation. The Dusseldorf Exposition. Attendance as
representative of Yale at the Bodleian Tercentenary at Oxford ; reception of
D.C.L. degree; peculiar feature of it; banquet in Christ Church Hall;
failure of my speech. Visit to the University of St. Andrews ; Mr. Carnegie's
Rectoral address ; curious but vain attempts by audience to throw him off his
guard ; his skill in dealing with them ; reception of LL.D. degree. My seven-
tieth birthday ; kindness of friends at Berlin and elsewhere ; letters from
President Roosevelt, Mr. Hay, Secretary of State, and Chancellor von Billow.
My resignation at this time in accordance with resolution made years before.
Final reception by the Emperor. Farewell celebration with the American
Colony and departure. Stay at Alassio ; visits to Elba and Corsica ; relics of
Napoleon : curious monument of the vendetta between the Pozzo di Borgo
and Bonaparte families 197



CHAPTEE XLIV. MY RECOLLECTIONS OF WILLIAM II
1879-1903

My first knowledge of him ; his speech as a student at Dusseldorf ; talk with
his father and mother regarding it. His appearance at court ; characteristics.
His wedding and my first conversation with him. Opinion regarding him in
Berlin. Growth of opinions, favorable and unfavorable, in America. His
dismissal of Bismarck ; effect on public opinion and on my own view. Effect
of some of his speeches. The '"Caligula " pamphlet. Sundry epigrams. Con-
versation at my first interview with him as Ambassador. His qualities as a
conversationist. His artistic gifts ; his love of music ; his dealings with dra-
matic art. Position of the theater in Germany. His interest in archaeologi-
cal investigation ; in education ; in city improvements ; in improvements
throughout the Empire ; sundry talks with him on these subjects. His feel-
ing for literature ; extent of his reading ; testimony of those nearest him.
His freedom from fads. His gifts as a statesman ; his public and private dis-
cussions of state and international questions ; his thoroughness in dealing
with army and navy questions ; his interest in various navies. His broader
work ; his ability in selecting men and his strength in standing by them ;
his relation to the legislative bodies ; his acquaintance with men and things
in all parts of the Empire and outside the Empire. His devotion to work.
His clearness of vision in international questions as shown in sundry con-
versations ; union of breadth and minuteness in his views ; his large ac-
quaintance with men. His independence of thought ; his view of the Maine
catastrophe. His impulsiveness ; good sense beneath it ; results of some sup-



TABLE OF CONTENTS xi

PAOK

posed exceptions. His ability as a speaker; characteristics. His religious
views ; comparison of them with those of Frederick the Great and Frederick
William I ; his peculiar breadth of view shown in the Delitzsch affair ; also in
his dealings with his Roman Catholic subjects ; treatment of the Strasburg
and Metz Bishopric questions ; his skill shown in the Jerusalem church matter.
His theory of monarchy ; peculiar reasons for it ; sundry criticisms of him in
this respect. Feeling of the German people regarding attacks on the monarch.
The whole subject as viewed from the American Democratic standpoint;
Thomas Jefferson's letter to John Adams. The Emperor's feeling toward
Parliamentary government ; strength he has given it by sundry appoint-
ments. His alleged violations of the German Constitution ; doubts regard-
ing them. His alleged hostility to the United States during the Spanish War
and at other times ; facts regarding this charge. Sundry other charges
against him ; his dealings with the Venezuela question ; excellent reasons for
it. His feeling toward the United States. Summary of his position in con-
temporary history 218

CHAPTEE XLV. As PKESIDENT OF THE AMERICAN DELE-
GATION AT THE PEACE CONFERENCE OF THE HAGUE : I

1899

Proposal of a Conference by Nicholas II. Reasons why the Netherlands were
preferred to Switzerland as its place of meeting. General misunderstanding
as to the Emperor's proposal. My own skepticism. Resultant feeling re-
garding the Conference. My acceptance of the nomination to it. Condition
of things on our arrival at The Hague. First meeting of the American Dele-
gation. Am chosen its president. General character of our instructions
from Washington. American plan of arbitration. Preliminary meetings of
delegates. The opening session. The " House in the Wood"; its remarka-
ble characteristics. Proceedings. General skepticism at first. Baron de
Staal as President of the Conference. Count Nigra. Lord Pauncefote and
others. Public spirit of the Dutch Government. Growth of hope as to a
good result. Difficulties as to disarmament. The peace lobby. Queer letters
and crankish proposals. Better ideas. M. de Bloch and his views. Count
Welsersheimb and others. Organization of the Conference. First decision
regarding the publication of our proceedings. Rumors. Attitude of Count
Miinster, President of the German Delegation. Attitude of Russia and
sundry other powers regarding the American proposal for exempting private
property from seizure on the high seas. New instructions sought by us from
Washington. First presentation of the Presidents of Delegations to the
Queen; her conversation. My talk with the British Admiral, Sir John
Fisher. Real and imaginary interviews published in sundry European papers 250

CHAPTER XL VI. As PRESIDENT OF THE AMERICAN DELE-
GATION AT THE PEACE CONFERENCE OF THE HAGUE: II
1899

Apparent wavering of Russia regarding an arbitration scheme. Count Miin-
ster's view of the Russian proposals. Social gatherings. Influx of people
with notions, nostrums, and whimsies. First meeting of the great com-
mittee on arbitration. Presentation of the Russian plan ; its serious defects.
Successful effort of Sir Julian Pauncefote to provide for a proper court. Ex-
cellent spirit shown by the Russian delegates. Final character of the Ameri-
can project for an arbitration plan. Festival given to the Conference by the
Burgomaster and City Council of The Hague. I revisit Delft after an ab-



xii TABLE OF CONTENTS

PAGE

sence of thirty years ; deep impression made upon me by the tombs of
William the Silent and Grotius. Amalgamation of the Russian, British,
and American plans for arbitration. A day in London. Henry Irving in
Sardou's "Robespierre"; good and evil characteristics of the piece, its un-
historical features. Return to The Hague. The American plan of " Special
Mediation" and "Seconding Powers" favorably received by the Conference.
Characteristics of the amalgamated plan for the Arbitration Tribunal ; its re-
sults. Visit from Count Miinster; interesting stories of his life as Ambassa-
dor at St. Petersburg; the young German savant rescued from Siberia;
Miinster's quarrel with Gortchakoff ; his quotation from the old Grand Duke
Michael. Questions in the Conference regarding asphyxiating bombs, etc.
Attitude of the American delegates. Question of the exemption of private



Online LibraryAndrew Dickson WhiteAutobiography of Andrew Dickson White (Volume 2) → online text (page 1 of 54)