Mr. Seward to Mr. Corwin.
Your despatch of June 3d has been submitted to the President. Contrary to what was expected with much confidence, the army under General McClellan has for the moment failed in its advance against Richmond. He has, however, by a masterly generalship, changed his position for a more advantageous one on the bank of the James river, where he has the co-operation of a naval force. We are rapidly bringing into the field additional land forces and augmenting the navy with iron and iron-clad steamers. The general military situation remains unchanged.
Our intelligence from abroad has been quite satisfactory during the last month. It is to be expected, however, that the check at Richmond will produce some new demonstrations of opposition and hostility on the part of interested or prejudiced classes abroad. Nevertheless, we do not apprehend any new complications, although the maritime nations with which we have held communications the most intimate for a long period are suffering scarcely less than ourselves in consequence of our civil war.
My previous communications will have prepared you for the announcement that the treaties which you recently negotiated have been laid upon the table in the Senate, and that Congress is about to adjourn,
We learn from London that the British government has not approved the treaty negotiated by Sir Charles Wyke. There seems to be good reason for believing that the invasion of Mexico is becoming unpopular in France, and that the French government may probably desist from it or materially modify its plans and purposes in regard to the enterprise.
It is very certain that the idea of preparing a throne in Mexico for an Austrian prince, if ever entertained, was long since discarded.
It is probable that what has been most recently intended was a preparation of the ground for a recognition of the government under General Almonte, but without guarantees for its maintenance and stability. You can judge better than we how far that project is likely to be made successful.
I am, sir, your obedient servant,
Thomas Corwin, Esq., &C., &C., &C.[Page 754]