Page:The Fall of Maximilan's Empire.djvu/46

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however, for a steamer called the "Tabasco" was fitted out and armed, and on the 9th came down to Sacrificios and anchored near the "Tacony." Roe immediately wrote to Mr. Saulnier that it would be well to let the Imperial Commissary understand thoroughly his intention to maintain his rights. "If the 'Tabasco' attempts to interfere with our boats, there will be trouble." He added that he proposed sending the boat in at seven the next morning. This was done and the boat was not interfered with, but the captain of the "Tabasco" sent a pronunciamento on board forbidding any further communication with the Liberal camp. A similar document was delivered to each of the other vessels, although up to that time the American was the only one that had so offended. "C'est grandiose, n'est-ce pas?" remarked the Frenchman, with a good-natured shrug.

Roe's reply was as follows:

U.S.S. Tacony,

Sacrificios, Mexico, April 10, 1867.

Sir: I have the honor to acknowledge receipt of your communication of the 9th inst.

Ships of war of the United States will observe the neutrality of nations between belligerents.

Boats from this ship will occasionally visit Boca del Rio for the purpose of procuring supplies of which we may have need. But in all cases the flag of the United States will be carried.