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which the British commissioners claim the boundary line to be.

I consider it, therefore, indispensable to address to your exxellency
this protest against the assumption upon which the measures contemplated
by the American Government are grounded.

I have, &c.,


To his Excellency the Rt. Hon. C, R. Vaughan, 4'C.

3Ir. Van Buren to Mr. C. R. Vaughan.

Department of State,

Washington, May 11, 1829,

The undersigned, Secretary of State of the United States, has the honor
to acknowledge the receipt of the note which Mr. Vaughan, his Britannic
Majesty's envoy extraordinary and minister plenipotentiary, addressed
to him on the 10th of April, stating, upon the authority of a letter from
the Governor of New Brunswick, (whereof a copy came ^^nclosed in Mr.
Vaughan's note,) that it was apparently the intention of the Government
of the United States to carry the road now making through the State of
Maine, to Mars Hill, over that point, and to occupy Mars Hill as a mili-
tary station ; and protesting against such occupation, upon the ground that
the line drawn by the commissioners of boundary, under the treaty of Ghent,
due north from the monument which marks the source of the river St.
Croix, was not considered by them as correctly laid down, and that it yet
remains to be determined whether Mars Hill is eastward or westward of
the true line.

The undersigned deems it unnecessary, upon the present occasion, to en-
ter into an elaborate discussion of the point stated by Sir Howard Doug-
las, the Lieutenant Governor of New Brunswick, concerning the line re-
ferred to by him, inasmuch as the relative position of Mars Hill to that
line is already designated upon map A, and the line itself mutually agreed
to and sufficiently understood for all present purposes, though not defin
itively settled by the convention of London of the 29th of September, 1827

The undersigned will, therefore, merely state that he finds nothing in
the record of the proceedings of the commissioners under the 5th article
of the treaty of Ghent, to warrant the doubt suggested by the Lieutenant
Governor of New Brunswick, whether Mars Hill lies to the westward of
the line to be drawn due north from the monument, at the source of

\S I J)oc. Xo. 126.]

tiie St. Croix, to the highlands which divide the waters that empty into
the river St. Lawrence Irom those wiiicli enii)ty into tlic Athiiitic ocean ;
liiat the joint snrveys and explorations made nnder that conmiission
place the hill ahont a mile due wost ol'lhat line ; and that the agent of his
Britannic Majesty, lielbre t'le coimnissioners, so lar Irom intimating any
doubt on the point, m ide it one ground of argument that the true line,
when correctly laid down, would neij^'ssarily, on account of the ascertained
progressive westerly variation of the needle, fall still farther Avestward.

The undersigned cannot acquiesce in the supposition that, because the
agent of his Britannic Majesty thought proper, in the proceedings before
the conmiissioncrs, to lay claim to all that portion of the State of Maine
Miiich lies north of a line running westerly from Mars Hill, and desig-
nated as the limit or boundary of the British claim, thereby the Uni-
ted Slates, or the State of Maine, ceased to have jurisdiction in the
territory thus claimed. In the view of this Government, his Britannic
Majesty's agent might, with equal justice, have extended his claim to any
other undisputed part of the State, as to claim the portion of it which he
has drawn in question : nnd in such case, the Lieutenant Governor of New
Hnmswick could surely not have considered a continuance on the part of
tlie T'nitcd States and of the State of Maine to exercise their accustomed
jurisdiction and authority to be an encroachment. If so, in what light are
we to regard the continued acts of jurisdiction now exercised by liim in
\he Madawaska settlement ? More than twenty years ago, large tracts of
land lying westward of Mars Hill, and northward on the river Restook,
were granted by the State of Massachusetts, which tracts are held and
possessed under those grants to this day; and the United States and the
"States of Massachusetts and Maine, in succession, have never ceased to
v'xercise that jurisdiction which the unsettled condition of the country in
that region, and other circumstances, admitted and required.

The undersigned, therefore, cannot discover, in the facts and circum-
TStances of the case, any just principles upon wliich Sir Howard Douglas
'':^ould predicate his protest. He has, however, submitted the note which
he had the honor to receive from Mr. Vaughan to the President of the
United States, and is by him directed to say, in reply, th;it, although this
Ciovernment could feel no difliculty in the exercise of what it deems au
UDqnestionable right, and could not allow itself to be restrained by the
prt^test of the Lieutenant Governor of New Brunswick, yet, as a further
proof of the spirit of amity, forbearance, and conciliation, which the Pres-
ident is desirous of cultivating between the two Governments, he has de-
'•iided to ))ostpone, for th.e ])resent, the exercise of the authority vested in
Him by the Congress of the United States, to cause to be surveyed -uid
^aid out a military ro;id, to 1)C continued Irom Mars Hill, or such other
point on the military road laid out in the State of Maine as he may think
projK-r, to the mouth of the river Madawaska ; and to add, that the Lieu-
Icuunt Governor of New Brimswick is under a misapprehension as to the
■tj^ign of this (Jovernment to occupy Mars Hill as a military station ; no
such inteDtion beini,' entertained by the I^resident, norhnve any measures
ix'cn taken by this Governmenl with an ulterior view to that object.

The undiTsiLMied indnlgtjs the hoj)(> that Mr. Vaughan will i)erceive,in

^hc maimer in uhic h ihe President, discriminating between tlie rights of

»ius Government and iheir present exercise, has used the discretion con-

>&rrcd upon hirn, an additional evidence of the desire which he sincerely

[ J3oo. No. 126. ] 19

entertains, and which he hay hcretorore caused to h(! counaaiiicated to
Mr. Vaughan, lliat both Govcrnnicnts slioiild, as far as ])racfical)le, abstain
from all acts of authority over the territory in dis])Uti;, whicli are not of
immediate and indispensable necessity, and whicli would serve lo create
or increase excitement whilst the matter is in course of arbitration ; and
he feels well persuaded that Mr. Vaughan will not fail to inculcate the same
spirit, and to recommend, in the strongest terms, the observance of the
same course on the part of the provincial Govermneut of New Brunswick.

The undersigned offers to Mr. Vaughan the renewed assurances of his
high consideration.


To the Right Hon. Ciiaui.es R. Vaighan, S,-c.

Mr. Vavghan to Mr. Fan Bureii.

Washington, May 14, 1829.

The undersigned, his Britannic Majesty's envoy extraordinary and
minister plenipotentiary, has the honor to acknowledge the receipt of Mr.
Van Buren's note dated 11th instant, and he derives great satisfaction
from being able to communicate to his Majesty's Government the assu-
rances which it contains, that the Government of the United States has
never entertained the design of occupying Mars Hill; and that the Presi-
dent, in the spirit of amity, forbearance, and conciliation, which he is de-
sirous of cultivating between the two Governments, has decided to post-
pone, for the present, the exercise of the authority vested in him hy the
Congress of the United States, to cause to be surveyed and laid out a mili-
tary road, to be continued from Mars Hill to the river Madawaska.

The undersigned will transmit immediately a copy of Mr. Van Buren's
note to his Majesty's Government: and he forbears, therefore, from ta-
king notice of the observations which it contains relative to the exact po-
sition of Mars Hill, and to the exercise of jurisdiction in the district on
the northwest of it.

The undersigned begs leave to renew to Mr. Van Buren the assurances
of his highest consideration.


Hon. Martin Van Buren, 4'C.

Mr. Vaughan to Mr. Van Buren.

Washington, June 8, 1829.
The undersigned, his Britamiic Majesty's envoy extraordinary and
minister plenipotentiary, had the honor on the 7th March last to lay be-
fore the Government of the United States a letter from Sir Howard
Douglas, his Majesty's Lieutenant Governor of New Brunswick, in ex-
planation of trespasses alleged by the Governor of the State of JNIassa-
chusetts to have been committed by British subjects in the disputed terri-
tory within that Province. The Lieutenant Governor announced 'his
intention, in that letter, of sending a magistrate into the district where the
proceedii-igs complained of had taken place, to ascertain the nature and

20 [ Doc. No. 126. ]

extent oi the alleged tivspasse.«, and alU'iwards to make a report to his

The report of the magistrate having been received by Mr. Black, who
has been commissioned by his Majesty to administer the Government of
New BrnnsNvick dnring the temporary absence of Sir Howard Douglas.
a copy of it has been transmitted to the undersigned, and he begs leave
to submit it to the consideration of the Secretary of State of the United
.States, together with an extract of the letter of Mr. Black which accom-
panied it.

As it appears by the report of Mr. Maclauchlan, the magistrate, that
some American citizens settled on the disputed territory arc implicated in
the trespasses which have been committed, Mr. lilack, the President and
Comiuissioner-in-chief of the Government of New Brunswick, suggests the
propriety of an officer being appointed by the Government of the United
States to act in concert with the British magistrate, in preventing further

The undersigned has received from Mr. Black the most satisfactory as-
surances that it will be his earnest study to adhere scrupulously to the
good feeling and conciliatory conduct towards the United States, whick
has been observed by Sir Howard Douglas.

The undersigned seizes this opportunity to renew to Mr. Van Buren..
the assurances of his distinguished consideration.


Hon. Maktix ^'A^' Buren, S,'c.

Extract of a lettei' from William Black, Esq., President and Com-

77\issioncr-i)i-cliieffor administering the Government of Neio Brims-

ivick, dated

Frederickton, (New Brunswick,) May 11, 1S29.

Having just obtained, through the commissioner of Crown lands, the
report of Mr. Maclauchlan, the magistrate appointed by Sir Howard
Douglas to go and inipiire into the alleged trespasses on the disputed ter-
ritory, I have the honor herewith to enclose the same for your information.
From what that ollicer states respecting the proceedings of a Mr. Dennis
Fairbanks and others, including Baker, and the conniving conduct of the
land agents for Massachusetts and Maine, I am induced to submit to your
excellency's consideration the propriety of an officer being appointed by
the General Government of the United States, to act in concert with Mr.
Maclauchlan, in unarding against further depredations and the infraction
of the existing understanding between the two Governments, until the
pending question shall be decided.

I have, &c.


To thr KiL'ht linn. C. K. Vauguan, <Sr.

Dki'Ahi'.mkni' or ( itoww Lands and Forests,

Frcdvricklon, May 11, 1829.
Siu : I luive the honor to transmit, for your honor's hiformation, a copy
of a report received by me from J. A. JMaciuuclilan, Esq., on the subject

[ Doc. No. 126. ] 21

of trespasses committed on the territory in dispute between the Govern-
ment of his Majesty and that of the United States of America,
I have the honor, &c.

Commissioner Crown Lands.
His Honor William Black, Esq.,

President and Coinmissiona'-in-chief, S^'c.

Parish of Kent, York County,

April A, 1829.

Sir : In comphance with the instructions received through your office
from his excellency the Lieutenant Governor, bearing date the 13th
February last, I have now the honor to acquaint you of my having, agreea-
bly to those instructions, proceeded to the parish of Kent, on the river St.
John : and, after chooshig a suitable residence for myself a few miles
below the Restook and Fohique rivers, I proceeded to inspect the territory
in dispute between the Governments of Great Britain and the United
States, for the purpose of ascertaining the extent of an alleged trespass by
British subjects in erecting mills and cutting pine timber, as stated in a
memorandum of Mr. Coffin, the land agent for Massachusetts, and for-
warded to his Majesty's minister at Washington.

In order, therefore, to obtain the most correct information on this head,
I deemed it of importance to trace that part of the north or exploring line
between the road leading from the Woodstock settlement to Houlton, and
where the said line intersects the river St, John, three miles above the
Grand falls ; being convinced, by such an arrangement, that I must detect
any trespass made on that portion of the territory, excepting any settle-
ment which might have been established on the tributary streams.

Having then traced the line as described, for a distance of upwards of
sixty miles, and which I beg to assure you I had great difficulty in effect-
ing, owing to the very imperfect manner in which it has been extended,
not having been sufficiently blazed, or underbushed, (so termed by sur-
veyors;) and from which circumstance I found it absolutely necessary to
have it reblazed the greater part of the distance, for the future guid-
ance of the public, as well as myself, during the pending negotiation ;
the only trespasses I detected were those communicated to you on the
1.3th and 23d ultimo, of Henry Morehouse and Charles McMullen: the
former having cut and hauled into the acknowledged territory, above the
Restook, 45 trees of white pine, making probably one hundred tons of
timber, and leaving unhaided (by my orders) within the disputed territory
150 trees, making 400 tons.

The latter trespass, by McMullen, is 19 trees of white pine, about 50
tons, which were cut above the river Des Chutes, not far from Mars Hill,
and hauled to the St, John,

With reference to Mr, Coffin's memorandum, it would appear that that
gentleman had no knowledge of the persons erecting mills on the Restook.
There are at present two mills erecting, which will be put in operation
early in the spring. The grist-mill is building on a tributary stream called
the Carraboo, which discharges from the left bank of t!ic Restook, about
ten miles above the exploring line; and a double saw-mill on the Presque
sle, that empties itself on the right bank, 26 miles up.

22 [ ])()('. N(K 12(). ]

Th»' o:rist-mill was begun by a person o\' the name of Vaup-han, from
Nova Scotia, but who has since sold liis riy^ht and title to AVilHam Pyles,
(an Aineriean,) ant! Jonathan Packs, from this river. With respect to the
jviw-mill, this is owned by Dennis Fairbanks, of the State of Maine, who
has now sufficient logs cut to make 100,000 feet of boards.

Mr. Fairbanks, on returning with his family fiom Maine, on the 27th
ultimo, to j)roceed up the Rcstook, having heard of my inquiry respecting
his establishment on that river, called at my residence, which allbrded me
an opixntunity of a.scertaining what authority he had for commencing his
mill, and to procure timber for the same. He stated that he had made
application to his Government (State of Maine) for a title of the situation
he holds in possession on the Restook, together with leave to procure such
timber as he might recpiire. This, however, was not granted : but he
was informed that, if he cut any timber, the same must be accoimted for
to Mr. Colfin and Doctor Daniel Rose, the land agents for the States of
Massachusetts and Maine.

I tlien asked iMr. Fairbanks if the agents were knowing to his estab-
lishment; when his reply was in the affirmative, having rix^ntioned it to
them in October last, at the time they were through togc'iier, from Houl-
ton to the river Dcs Chutes.

Mr. Fairbanks lias received instructions from his Government to take
an account «»f all timber cut to the M'estward of the cxplorin<r line.

The number of settlers now on the Restook is about thirty, of whom
twenty have lamilies ; there are nine Americans, three of whom were
discharged from the New Brunswick regiment, and received the military
locations on tliis river, together with nearly two years' provisions. The
remainder of the settlers are from Ireland, Nova Scotia, and this Province.
However, almost the whole of these persons had property on the river St.
John, which was taken from them for debts incurred bylumbering ; and
th<*y imagined, by occupying land above the exploring line on the Restook,
tliey were out of the reach of the civil power of this Province, in which
they have found themselves mistaken.

I find the persons who have lumbered this season above the north or
exploring line, on the river St. John, are Americans, with the exception of
one. They are as follows: Abraham de May (Canadian) has cut 100 tons
ol whitc-piiK- timber, nine miles above the Grand falls.

John JJakcr, who lives at the Marcumpticook stream, where he has
mills 1.) miles above the Madawaska river, has SOO white-pine logs.

Messrs. Daniel Savage and Bartletl, at the Fish-river mills, six miles

abov(! liaker's, have 1.50 tons of whito-pinc^ timber, and between 400 and
500 lot's.

Ow.;n FitzL'oral.l, who resides seven miles above Fi.sli river, has 150
tons of while-pine timber.

I have not been able to ascrtain by Avliat authority these persons have
olitanied their lumber; but as Mr. Fairbanks ai)i)ears to have an indirect
jn'rmis.sion to proeur.! his, I think it not miiiUely they may have availed
ili.iiisrlves of ill. • s;iiiic privilege ill ol»t;i jiiiiig theirs.

I have, &c. ,

Dvjnilii Cni/niiissinncr of Crown Lands and Forests
Hon. Thomas Haim.!!;,

('(nnrni.ssioiirr of Crown Lands, byv.

f Doc. No. 12f>. J 22

Mr. Bankhead to Mr. Livingston.

Washington, October 1, 1831.

The undersigned, liis Britannic Majesty's charge d'atlaircs, has the
honor to acquaint Mr. Livingston, Secretary of State of the United States,
that he lias received a comnumication from his Majesty's Lieutenant Gov-
ernor of New Hrunswick, stating that the authorities of Maine have eiA-
deavored to exercise a jurisdiction over part of the territory at present in
dispute between his Majesty and the United States : and further, that an
order has been issued by a justice of the peace for the comity of Penob-
scot to the inliabitants of the town of Madawaska to assemble for the piu-
pose of choosing municipal oificers.

The undersigned regrets sincerely that these irregular proceedings should
have been had recourse to, during a period when the question of bounda-
ry is in a coiu'se of settlement, and in opposition to the desire expressed
by the President, that, pending the discussion of that question, the State
of Maine should refrain from committing any act which could be constru-
ed into a violation of the neighboring territory.

The undersigned begs leave to submit to the Secretary of State several
documents which he has received from Sir Archibald Campbell, in sup-
port of his complaint of a violation of territory ; and the undersigned en-
tertains a confident hope that such measures wih be adopted as shall pre-
vent a recurrence of acts, on the part of the authorities of the State of
Maine, which are productive of so much inconvenience, and which tend
to disturb that harmony and good-will so necessary to be preserved be-
tween the two countries.

The undersigned has the honor to renew to Mr. Livingston the assu-
rances of his distinguished consideration.


To the Hon. Edward JjIvingston, Sfc.

Cojjies of documents which accompanied Mr. Bankhead'' s note to Mr.
Livingston, dated October 1, 1831,


By a warrant to me directed from William D. Williamson, Esq., one of
the justices of the peace for the county of Penobscot and State of Maine,
this is to notify and warn the inhabitants of the town of Madawaska.
qualified to vote in town affairs, to assemble at the dwelling-house of Mr.
Peter Ligott, on Saturday, the 20th August, 1831, at one of the clock in
the afternoon, to act on the following articles, viz :

1st. To choose a moderator ; 2d, to choose a clerk of the said town j
3d, to choose selectmen ; 4th, to choose constables.

By order of the said Justice.
True copy :

Warden of the disputed territori/\
Madawaska, August 19, 1831.

•21 [ Doc. No. 126. ]

Statk ok Maink.

Tit IWilter Powrrs, of Maddicaska, in said county, greeting :

Voii are hereby required, in the luiine of the State of Maine, to notify
and warn the inhabitants of said Madawaska, ([ualified to vote in town
artrtirs, to meet at .Mr. Petur Ligott's dweUing-house, in said town, on
Saturday, the 20th day of August, 1831, tlien and there to act on the fol-
lowing articles, and to transact such other business as may come before
them :

1st. To choose a moderator to govern said meeting ; 2d, to choose a
town-clerk ; 3d, to choose selectmen ; 4th, to choose constables and all
other town olRcers.

And you are hercliy further required, in the name of the State of Maine,
to make a return of this warrant, with your doings therein at the said
meeting, at which you will preside until a moderator be chosen.

Given under my hand and seal, at Bangor, in said county, the eleventh
dav of July, one thousand eight hundred and thirty-one.


Justice of the Peace, <^'C.
True copy :

Mauawaska, v^ugust 20, 1831.

The otficers as referred to in the above instrument were actually cho-
sen in by American residents in the upper part of the Madawaska settle-
ment : and tlie several officers were sworn in to perform the duties re-
quired of them.


Mr. Lii'ini>;slo)i to Air. Bankhead.

Department of State,

Wafihington, October 17, 1831.

Siu : liiiuiediately after receiving your note of the 1st histant, I wrote
to the (iovernor of the State of Maine for information on the subject of
it. I have just received his answer, of which I have the honor to enclose
two extracts. Hy the first, you will perceive that the election of town
officers in the settlement of Madawaska, of which complaint was made
in tlu; |>ap('rs enclosed in your letter, was made under color of a general
law, which was not intended by either the executive or legislative authori-
ty of that Slate t(j be executed in that settlement, and that the whole was
the work of inconsiderate individuals.

JJy th«- second extract, it will appear that the individuals said to have
been niost prominent in seltinu up the authority of the State have been
arrested l)y order of the LicMiteiianl (iovernor of the Province of New
nrnnswi«-k, and were on their way to l)e imprisoned at Frcderickton.

The imiovali«»n on the existing slate of lliin<:s in the disputed territory
beini; distniclly disavowed by the executive authority of the State, no act
of authority or exercise of jurisdiction iiaving followed the election, I

[ Doc. No. 126. ] 25

would respectfully suggest tlir jjiopricly of your rcconuuoiuliug to the
Lieutenant Governor of New Brunswick (lie release of tin' prisoners wiio
were arrested for exercising this act of authority in the territory nuitually
claimed by the two nations, contrary to the understanding between their
Governments. It is their avowed object to avoid any collision until the
intention of both parties in relation to the award shall be fully known.
All subjects calculated to produce irritation, therefore, ought evidently to
be avoided. The arrest of the persons concerned in the election nuist
produce that teeling in a high degree. A conviction cannot take place
without eliciting a decision from the bench declaratory of, and enforcing,
the jurisdiction over the territory in dispute, which it is the present policy
of both Powers to avoid, at least for the short time that must elapse before
the question can be finally settled. If punishment should follow convic-
tion, the passions that would be excited must inevitably be hostile to that
spirit of conciliation so necessary where sacrifices of national feeling and
individual interest are required for the common good. It would be absurd

Online LibraryUnited States. Dept. of StateMaine boundary--Mr. Greely, &c. .. → online text (page 3 of 56)