Page:The Fall of Maximilan's Empire.djvu/42

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34
THE FALL OF MAXIMILIAN'S EMPIRE.

fleet could be seen pulling to the "Jason,"—all but the Austrian. Last of all came the "Tacony's". Entering the cabin, Captain Roe addressed the assembled officers, saying that they had been called together at his request, as he wished to read his orders to them. And he read them. Their pith was in the following paragraph: "The duty you are charged with is to exercise a general supervision over American interests, and you are referred to the President's proclamation in response to the decree of Maximilian declaring a blockade of Mexican ports, for your guidance."[1]

  1. President Johnson's proclamation was as follows"

    BY THE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES,

    A PROCLAMATION.

    Whereas, A war is existing in the Republic of Mexico, aggravated by foreign military intervention; and

    Whereas, The United States, in accordance with their settled habits and policy, are a neutral power in regard to the war which thus afflicts the Republic of Mexico; and

    Whereas, It has been known that one of the belligerents in the said war,—namely, the Prince Maximilian, who asserts himself to be Emperor of Mexico,—has issued a decree in regard to the port of Matamoras and other Mexican ports, which are now in the occupation and possession of another of the said belligerents—namely, the United States of Mexico,—which decree is in the following words:

    "The port of Matamoras and all those of the northern frontier which have withdrawn from their obedience to the government, are closed to foreign and coasting traffic during such time as the empire of the law shall not be therein reinstated.

    "Article II.—Merchandise proceeding from said ports, on arriving at any other where the excise of the Empire is collected, shall pay the duties on importation, introduction, and consumption, and on satisfactory proof of contravention, shall be irremissibly confiscated. Our Minister of the Treasury is charged with the punctual execution of this decree.