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from each sovereign state participating in the treaty,
who shall hold office until their successors are appointed
by the same body."

Secondly, the tribunal to meet for organization not
later than six months after the treaty shall have been
ratified by nine powers; to organize itself as a perma-
nent court, with such officers as may be found neces-


sary, and to fix its own place of session and rules of

The third article provides that "the contracting nations
will mutually agree to submit to the international tri-
bunal all questions of disagreement between them, ex-
cepting such as may relate to or involve their political
independence or territorial integrity."

The fifth article runs as follows: "A bench of judges
for each particular case shall consist of not fewer than
three nor more than seven, as may be deemed expedient,
appointed by the unanimous consent of the tribunal, and
shall not include any member who is either a native, sub-
ject, or citizen of the state whose interests are in litiga-
tion in the case."

The sixth article provides that the general expenses
of the tribunal be divided equally among the adherent
powers ; but that those arising from each particular case
be provided for as may be directed by the tribunal ; also
that non-adherent states may bring their cases before it,
on condition of the mutual agreement that the state
against which judgment shall be found shall pay, in ad-
dition to the judgment, the expenses of the adjudication.

The seventh article makes provision for an appeal,
within three months after the notification of the decision,
upon presentation of evidence that the judgment contains
a substantial error of fact or law.

The eighth and final article provides that the treaty
shall become operative when nine sovereign states, where-
of at least six shall have taken part in the conference of
The Hague, shall have ratified its provisions.

It turns out that ours is the only delegation which has
anything like a full and carefully adjusted plan for a
court of arbitration. The English delegation, though
evidently exceedingly desirous that a system of arbitra-
tion be adopted, has come without anything definitely
drawn. The Russians have a scheme ; but, so far as can
be learned, there is no provision in it for a permanent


In the evening there was a general assemblage of the
members of the conference at a reception given by Jonk-
heer van Karnebeek, formerly Dutch minister of foreign
affairs, and now first delegate from the Netherlands to
the conference. It was very brilliant, and I made many
interesting acquaintances ; but, probably, since the world
began, never has so large a body come together in a spirit
of more hopeless skepticism as to any good result. Though
no one gives loud utterance to this feeling, it is none the
less deep. Of course, among all these delegates acquainted
with public men and measures in Europe, there is con-
siderable distrust of the intentions of Russia; and, nat-
urally, the weakness of the Russian Emperor is well un-
derstood, though all are reticent regarding it. The only
open utterances are those attributed to one or two of the
older European diplomatists, who lament being sent on an
errand which they fear is to be fruitless. One of these
is said to have bewailed this mission as a sad ending
to his public services, and to have declared that as he
liad led a long life of devotion to his country and to its
sovereign, his family might well look upon his career as
honorable ; but that now he is probably doomed to crown
it with an open failure.

May 18.

At two o'clock in the afternoon the conference held its
open session at the * * House in the Wood. ' ' The building
is most interesting, presenting as it does the art and
general ideas of two hundred and fifty years ago; it
is full of historical associations, and the groves and gar-
dens about it are delightful. The walls and dome of the
great central hall are covered with immense paintings
in the style of Rubens, mainly by his pupils ; and, of these,
one over the front entrance represents Peace descend-
ing from heaven, bearing various symbols and, appa-
rently, entering the hall. To this M. de Beaufort, our
honorary president, the Netherlands minister of foreign
affairs, made a graceful allusion in his opening speech,


expressing the hope that Peace, having entered the hall,
would go forth bearing blessings to the world. Another
representation, which covers one immense wall, is a glori-
fication of various princes of Orange : it is in full front of
me, as I sit, the Peace fresco being visible at my left, and
a lovely view of the gardens, and of the water beyond,
through the windows at my right.

The "House in the Wood" was built early in the seven-
teenth century by a princess of the house of Orange,
the grandmother of William III of England. The central
hall under the dome, above referred to, is now filled up
with seats and desks, covered with green cloth, very neat
and practical, and mainly arranged like those in an Eng-
lish college chapel. Good fortune has given me one of the
two best seats in the house ; it being directly in front of the
secretaries, who are arranged in a semicircle just below
the desk of the president ; at my left are the other mem-
bers of our delegation, and facing me, across the central
aisle, is Count Miinster, at the head of the German dele-
gation. This piece of good luck comes from the fact that
we are seated in the alphabetical order of our countries,
beginning with Allemagne, continuing with Amerique,
and so on down the alphabet.

The other large rooms on the main floor are exceedingly
handsome, with superb Japanese and Chinese hangings,
wrought about the middle of the last century to fit the
spaces they occupy; on all sides are the most perfect
specimens of Japanese and Chinese bronzes, ivory carv-
ings, lacquer-work, and the like: these rooms are given
up to the committees into which the whole body is divided.
Up-stairs is a dining-hall in which the Dutch Govern-
ment serves, every working-day, a most bounteous lunch
to us all, and at this there is much opportunity for in-
formal discussion. Near the main hall is a sumptuous
saloon, hung round with interesting portraits, one of them
being an admirable likeness of Motley the historian, who
was a great favorite of the late Queen, and frequently her
guest in this palace.

II. 17


Our first session was very interesting; the speech by
the honorary president, M. de Beaufort, above referred
to, was in every way admirable, and that by the presi-
dent, M. de Staal, thoroughly good. The latter is the
Russian ambassador to London; I had already met him
in St. Petersburg, and found him interesting and agree-
able. He is, no doubt, one of the foremost diplomatists of
this epoch; but he is evidently without much knowledge
of parliamentary procedure. Congratulatory telegrams
were received from the Emperor of Russia and the Queen
of the Netherlands and duly answered.

May 19.

At eleven in the morning, in one of the large rooms of
the hotel, the presidents of delegations met to decide on
a plan of organization and work ; and, sitting among them,
I first began to have some hopes of a good result. Still,
at the outset, the prospect was much beclouded. Though
a very considerable number of the foremost statesmen
in Europe were present, our deliberations appeared, for
a time, a hopeless chaos : the unf amiliarity of our presi-
dent, Baron de Staal, with parliamentary usages seemed
likely to become embarrassing; but sundry statesmen,
more experienced in such matters, began drawing toge-
ther, and were soon elaborating a scheme to be presented
to the entire conference. It divided all the subjects named
in the Mouravieff circular among three great commit-
tees, the most important being that on "Arbitration."
The choice of representatives on these from our dele-
gation was made, and an ex-officio membership of all
three falls to me.

In the course of the day I met and talked with various
interesting men, among them Count Nigra, formerly Ca-
vour's private secretary and ambassador at the court of
Napoleon III, where he accomplished so much for Italian
unity; Sir Julian Pauncefote, the British ambassador at
Washington; and M. Bernaert, president of the Belgian
Chamber. In the evening, at a reception given by the


minister of foreign affairs, M. de Beaufort, I made fur-
ther acquaintances and had instructive conversations.

In addition to the strict duties of the conference, there
is, of course, a mass of social business, with no end of
visits, calls, and special meetings, to say nothing of social
functions, on a large scale, at the houses of sundry min-
isters and officials ; but these, of course, have their prac-
tical uses.

The Dutch Government is showing itself princely in
various ways, making every provision for our comfort
and enjoyment.

In general, I am considerably encouraged. The skep-
tical feeling with which we came together seems now
passing away; the recent speech of the Emperor Wil-
liam at Wiesbaden has aroused new hopes of a fairly
good chance for arbitration, and it looks as if the promise
made me just before I left Berlin by Baron von Billow,
that the German delegation should cooperate thoroughly
with our own, is to be redeemed. That delegation assures
us that it is instructed to stand by us as far as possible
on all the principal questions. It forms a really fine body,
its head being Count Minister, whom I have already found
very agreeable at Berlin and Paris, and its main author-
ity in the law of nations being Professor Zorn, of the
University of Konigsberg; but, curiously enough, as if
by a whim, the next man on its list is Professor Baron
von Stengel of Munich, who has written a book against
arbitration ; and next to him comes Colonel Schwartzhoff,
said to be a man of remarkable ability in military mat-
ters, but strongly prejudiced against the Russian pro-

As to arbitration, we cannot make it compulsory, as so
many very good people wish ; it is clear that no power here
would agree to that ; but even to provide regular machin-
ery for arbitration, constantly in the sight of all nations,
and always ready for use, would be a great gain.

As to disarmament, it is clear that nothing effective can
be done at present. The Geneva rules for the better care


of the wounded on land will certainly be improved and
extended to warfare on sea, and the laws of war will
doubtless be improved and given stronger sanction.

Whether we can get our proposals as to private prop-
erty on the high seas before the conference is uncertain ;
but I think we can. Our hopes are based upon the fact
that they seem admissible under one heading of the Mou-
ravieff circular. There is, of course, a determination
on the part of leading members to exclude rigorously
everything not provided for in the original programme,
and this is only right ; for, otherwise, we might spend years
in fruitless discussion. The Armenians, for example, are
pressing us to make a strong declaration in their behalf.
Poland is also here with proposals even more inflam-
matory ; so are the Finlanders ; and so are the South Af-
rican Boers. Their proposals, if admitted, would simply
be bombshells sure to blow all the leading nations of
Europe out of the conference and bring everything to
naught. Already pessimists outside are prophesying that
on account of these questions we are doomed to utter

The peace people of all nations, including our own, are
here in great force. I have accepted an invitation from
one of them to lunch with a party of like mind, including
Baroness von Suttner, who has written a brilliant book,
"Die Waffen Nieder," of which the moral is that all
nations shall immediately throw down their arms. Mr.
Stead is also here, vigorous as usual, full of curious
information, and abounding in suggestions.

There was a report, on our arriving, that the Triple
Alliance representatives are instructed to do everything
to bring the conference into discredit, but this is now
denied. It is said that their programme is changed, and
things look like it. On the whole, though no one is san-
guine, there is more hope.

May 21.

In the morning went with Dr. Holls to a Whitsunday
service at the great old church here. There was a crowd,


impressive chorals, and a sermon at least an hour long.
At our request, we were given admirable places in the
organ-loft, and sat at the side of the organist as he man-
aged that noble instrument. It was sublime. After the
closing voluntary Holls played remarkably well.

To me the most striking feature in the service was
a very earnest prayer made by the clergyman for the
conference. During the afternoon we also visited the old
prison near the Vijver, where the De Witts and other
eminent prisoners of state were confined, and in front
of which the former were torn in pieces by the mob.
Sadly interesting was a collection of instruments of tor-
ture, which had the effect of making me better satisfied
with our own times than I sometimes am.

In the evening, with our minister, Mr. Newel, and the
Dean of Ely, his guest, to an exceedingly pleasant "tea"
at the house of Baroness Gravensteen, and met a number
of interesting people, among them a kindly old gentle-
man who began diplomatic life as a British attache at
Washington in the days of Webster and Clay, and gave
me interesting accounts of them.

The queer letters and crankish proposals which come
in every day are amazing. I have just added to my col-
lection of diplomatic curiosities a letter from the editor
of a Democratic paper in southern Illinois, addressed to
me as ambassador at Mayence, which he evidently takes
to be the capital of Germany, asking me to look after a
great party of Western newspaper men who are to go
up the Rhine this summer and make a brief stay in the
above-named capital of the empire. I also receive very
many letters of introduction, which of course make large
demands upon my time. The number of epistles, also,
which come in from public meetings in large and small
American towns is very great, some evidently repre-
senting no persons other than the writers. As I write the
above, I open mechanically a letter from a peace meeting
assembled in Ledyard, Connecticut, composed of * ' Roger-
ine Quakers"; but what a "Rogerine Quaker" is I know
not. Some of these letters are touching, and some have


a comic side. A very good one comes from May Wright
Sewall; would that all the others were as thoughtful!

It goes without saying that the Quakers are out in full
force. We have been answering by cable some of the
most important communications sent us from America;
the others we shall try to acknowledge by mail, though
they are so numerous that I begin to despair of this.
If these good people only knew how all this distracts us
from the work which we have at heart as much as they,
we should get considerably more time to think upon the
problems before us.

May 22.

In the afternoon came M. de Bloch, the great publicist,
who has written four enormous volumes on war in mod-
ern times, summaries of which, in the newspapers, are
said to have converted the young Emperor Nicholas to
peace ideas, and to have been the real cause of his call-
ing the conference together. I found him interesting, full
of ideas, and devoted most earnestly to a theory that
militarism is gradually impoverishing all modern states,
and that the next European war will pauperize most of

Just afterward Count Welsersheimb, president of the
Austrian delegation, called, and was very anxious to
know the line we are to take. I told him frankly that
we are instructed to present a plan of arbitration, and
to urge a resolution in favor of exempting private prop-
erty, not contraband of war, from seizure on the high
seas; that we are ready to go to the full length in im-
proving the laws of war, and in extending the Geneva
rules to maritime warfare ; but that we look on the ques-
tion of reducing armaments as relating wholly to Europe,
no part of it being applicable to the United States.

As he seemed strongly in favor of our contention re-
garding private property on the high seas, but fearful
that Russia and England, under a strict construction of
the rules, would not permit the subject to be introduced,


I pointed out to him certain clauses in the Mouravieff
circular which showed that it was entirely admissible.

May 23.

In the morning came a meeting of the American dele-
gation on the subject of telegraphing Washington for
further instructions. We find that some of the details
in our present instructions are likely to wreck our pro-
posals, and there is a fear among us that, by following
too closely the plan laid down for us at Washington, we
may run full in the face of the Monroe Doctrine. It is,
indeed, a question whether our people will be willing
to have matters of difference between South American
States, or between the United States and a South Ameri-
can State, or between European and South American
States, submitted to an arbitration in which a majority of
the judges are subjects of European powers. Various
drafts of a telegram were made, but the whole matter
went over.

At ten the heads of delegations met and considered a
plan of organizing the various committees, and the list
was read. Each of the three great committees to which
the subjects mentioned in the Mouravieff circular are as-
signed was given a president, vice-president, and two hon-
orary presidents. The first of these committees is to
take charge of the preliminary discussion of those articles
in the Mouravieff circular concerning the non-augmen-
tation of armies and the limitation in the use of new
explosives and of especially destructive weapons. The
second committee has for its subject the discussion of hu-
manitarian reforms namely, the adaptation of the stipu-
lations of the Convention of Geneva of 1864 to maritime
warfare, the neutralization of vessels charged with saving
the wounded during maritime combats, and the revision
of the declaration concerning customs of war elaborated
in 1874 by the Conference of Brussels, which has never
yet been ratified. The third committee has charge of
the subject of arbitration, mediation, and the like.


The president of the first committee is M. Bernaert, a
leading statesman of Belgium, who has made a most ex-
cellent impression on me from the first ; and the two hon-
orary presidents are Count Miinster, German ambassador
at Paris, and myself.

The president of the second committee is M. de Martens,
the eminent Russian authority on international law ; and
the two honorary presidents, Count Welsersheimb of Aus-
tria-Hungary, and the Duke of Tetuan from Spain.

The third committee receives as its president M. Leon
Bourgeois, who has held various eminent positions in
France ; the honorary presidents being Count Nigra, the
Italian ambassador at Vienna, and Sir Julian Paunce-
fote, the British ambassador at Washington.

There was much discussion and considerable difference
of opinion on many points, but the main breeze sprang
up regarding the publicity of our doings. An admirable
speech was made by Baron de Bildt, who is a son of my
former Swedish colleague at Berlin, has held various
important positions at Washington and elsewhere, has
written an admirable history of Queen Christina of Swe-
den, and is now minister plenipotentiary at Rome. He
spoke earnestly in favor of considerable latitude in com-
munications to the press from the authorities of the con-
ference; but the prevailing opinion, especially of the
older men, even of those from constitutional states,
seemed to second the idea of Russia, that communica-
tions to the press should be reduced to a minimum, com-
prising merely the external affairs of the conference. I
am persuaded that this view will get us into trouble ; but
it cannot be helped at present.

Nay 24.

As was to be expected, there has begun some reaction
from the hopes indulged shortly after the conference
came together. At our arrival there was general skep-
ticism; shortly afterward, and especially when the or-
ganization of the arbitration committee was seen to be


so good, there came a great growth of hope; now conies
the usual falling back of many. But I trust that this will
not be permanent. Yesterday there was some talk which,
though quiet, was none the less bitter, to the effect that
the purpose of Russia in calling the conference is only
to secure time for strengthening her armaments ; that she
was never increasing her forces at a greater rate, es-
pecially in the southwestern part of the empire and in
the Caucasus, and never intriguing more vigorously in
all directions. To one who stated this to me my answer
simply was that bad faith to this extent on the part of
Russia is most unlikely, if not impossible; that it would
hand down the Emperor and his advisers to the eternal
execration and contempt of mankind; and that, in any
case, our duty is clear : to go on and do the best we can ;
to perfect plans for a permanent tribunal of arbitration ;
and to take measures for diminishing cruelty and suffer-
ing in war.

Meeting Count Minister, who, after M. de Staal, is very
generally considered the most important personage here,
we discussed the subject of arbitration. To my great re-
gret, I found him entirely opposed to it, or, at least, en-
tirely opposed to any well-developed plan. He did not
say that he would oppose a moderate plan for voluntary
arbitration, but he insisted that arbitration must be in-
jurious to Germany; that Germany is prepared for war
as no other country is or can be; that she can mobilize
her army in ten days ; and that neither France, Russia,
nor any other power can do this. Arbitration, he said,
would simply give rival powers time to put themselves in
readiness, and would therefore be a great disadvantage
to Germany.

Later came another disappointment. M. de Martens,
having read the memorandum which I left with him yes-
terday on the subject of exempting private property, not
contraband of war, from seizure upon the high seas,
called, and insisted that it would be impossible, under any
just construction of the Mouravieff programme, to bring


the subject before the second committee as we had hoped
to do; that Russia would feel obliged to oppose its in-
troduction ; and that Great Britain, France, and Italy, to
say nothing of other powers, would do the same. This
was rather trying, for I had especially desired to press
this long-desired improvement in international law; and
I showed him how persistent the United States had been
as regards this subject throughout our whole history,
how earnest the President and his cabinet are in press-
ing it now, and how our delegation are bound, under our
instructions, to bring it before the conference. I insisted
that we should at least have the opportunity to present
it, even if it were afterward declared out of order. To
this he demurred, saying that he feared it would arouse
unpleasant debate. I then suggested that the paper be
publicly submitted to our whole body for special reference
to a future conference, and this he took into consideration.
Under other circumstances, I would have made a struggle
in the committee and, indeed, in the open session of the
full conference ; but it is clear that what we are sent here
for is, above all, to devise some scheme of arbitration, and
that anything which comes in the way of this, by provok-
ing ill-feeling or prolonging discussion on other points,
will diminish our chances of obtaining what the whole
world so earnestly desires.

During the day our American delegation held two ses-
sions ; and, as a result, a telegram of considerable length
to the State Department was elaborated, asking per-
mission to substitute a new section in our original in-
structions regarding an arbitration tribunal, and to be
allowed liberty to make changes in minor points, as the
development of opinion in the conference may demand.
The substitute which we suggested referred especially to

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