Page:The Fall of Maximilan's Empire.djvu/53

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By the end of April affairs in Mexico appeared to be approaching a final solution, so far as news from the interior could be relied upon. The outer defences of the city of Mexico had fallen, and rumors of a definite shape, although not official, affirmed the flight of Maximilian to Texas. Of course, this was not the case. That unfortunate Prince was closely beleaguered in Querétaro, and great fears were entertained for his safety. The Austrian Minister in Washington, in obedience to instructions from his court, had already begun to communicate with Mr. Seward, asking his friendly intervention to secure, if possible, respect for the person of the Prince in the not improbable event of his falling into the hands of Juarez.

There seemed indeed cause for fears that in case of capture he might not escape with the treatment usually accorded to prisoners of war. To those on the scene this appeared a very much more dubious matter than was even apprehended by the shrewd and anxious statesmen and monarchs of the new and old worlds. In Camp Casa Mata, the head-quarters of General Benavides, there was displayed a small