Mr. Kreismann to Mr. Seward.

No. 18.]

Sir: I have the honor to acknowledge the receipt of your despatch No. 8, dated November 30, 1863. It makes mention only of my communication to you numbered 16, and dated November 10. Can it be that two others preceding it, numbered 14 and 15, and dated October 24 and 31, 1863, respectively, have failed to reach you?

The Schleswig-Holstein question has assumed a less warlike aspect. The efforts of Austria and Prussia have compelled the federal diet to simply decree an execution against the King of Denmark, instead of an occupation and sequestration of Holstein. This, of course, involves a recognition in fact of the King of Denmark as Duke of Holstein, and the maintenance of the London protocol. England and Russia, the two powers most interested in the preservation of that treaty, have come to an understanding with Austria and Prussia to the effect that they shall compel the Danish ministry to abrogate the constitution incorporating Schleswig, lately adopted, and which is to go into operation on the first of January next; and also to institute the reforms in Holstein and Lauenburg which were promised but never carried out by Denmark. If this is done—and it seems most unlikely that Denmark will refuse to comply with the demands of England and Russia—Austria and Prussia, on their part, are to see to it that the other German states shall relinquish their efforts in behalf of Prince Frederick of Augustenburg, who claims the succession in the duchies. Denmark, it appears now, will continue to exist as heretofore, and Germany once more be disappointed in its hope and aspirations for national unity and power. It is true, German troops are on their way to enter Holstein; and, although it is reported, on good authority, that on their arrival the Danish troops will withdraw, this may yet give a turn to affairs not apprehended by the cabinets at the present hour.

The government of Prussia has applied to the Chambers for twelve million thalers, to be raised by a loan, to defray the expenses for arming and equipping the Prussian contingent, and for fortifying the coast. But, as the position taken by the government is so entirely unsatisfactory to the people, the Chamber of Deputies will not vote the loan. An address to his Majesty is again to be resorted to, praying him to recede from the London protocol, to change the present system, and, in that event, pledging him all the resources of the country. It is, however, plain that this step will prove futile, resulting in the closing of the Chamber rather than in the dismissal of the ministry.

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I have the honor to be your obedient servant,


Hon. William H. Seward, Secretary of State, Washington, D. C.