Mr. Seward to Mr. Morris

No. 93.]

Sir: A despatch has been received at the department from Mr. Hale, agent and consul general of the United States at Alexandria, announcing that nine hundred negroes from the Soudan or upper country of Egypt, within the jurisdiction of the Pacha, were expected shortly to arrive at Alexandria to be embarked in French transports for Mexico, to relieve the contingent which was sent out in January, 1863. The latter proceeding, as you are aware, excited much comment at the time, but it passed unnoticed by this government, which was then seriously occupied with a peculiar condition of merely domestic affairs, and with the foreign embarrassments which grew out of that condition. Since then the United States have abolished slavery. The attention of Congress as well as that of the executive department and of the country has been very steadily fixed upon the course of events in Mexico, which I need not say form a subject of serious concern with regard to the safety of free republican institutions on this continent—an object with which we are accustomed to connect the desired ultimate consequence of the abolition of every form of compulsory civil or military servitude on this hemisphere.

You are instructed to bring this matter to the attention of the Turkish government, and to state that, in the opinion of this government, the renewal of the transaction referred to could not be regarded with favor, or even without deep anxiety by the people of the United States. It will be proper for you to inform the minister for foreign affairs that I have written upon the subject in the same sense herein adopted to the diplomatic agent of the United States at Paris, and to the consul general at Alexandria.

I am, sir, your obedient servant,


E. Joy Morris, Esq., &c., &c, Constantinople.