Mr. Nelson to Mr. Seward .
Santiago de Chili, June 15, 1865.
Sir: In my despatches Nos. 196 and 197, of the 1st instant, I had the honor to transmit to you numerous evidences of the very deep sympathy manifested in Valparaiso and Santiago in our great national bereavement. From that date until the present these manifestations of kind feeling have continued almost uninterruptedly.
On the fourth instant, at noon, by order of the navy department and that of war, a national salute was fired, in honor of the late President of the United States, from the fort at Valparaiso, at the conclusion of which twenty-one guns were fired from the Chilian sloop-of-war Esmeralda, at intervals of two minutes, and a like salute from the fortress of Hidalgo in Santiago.
An hour later a procession was formed, consisting of the fire department, with flags and apparatus draped in mourning; the society of the American Union, bearing the flags of the different American republics, also shrouded in crape, and citizens, most of them dressed in mourning, with crape upon the left arm. As the procession passed the legation, which was appropriately draped, I observed tears falling from the eyes of many, and the absolute silence and decorum of the thousands of spectators who filled the street for squares was in itself a mute tribute to the memory of the illustrious dead.
In Copiapó on the same day, the fourth instant, a very earnest demonstration of respect took place. Pursuant to a call signed by the principal citizens, the residents met at noon and proceeded, escorted by the military forming the garrison, to the alemada or public walk, where, upon the uncovering of the portrait of Mr. Lincoln, a national salute was fired and appropriate discourses delivered. The national flag was hoisted upon the public and private edifices at half-mast, and salutes were fired at sunrise, noon, and sunset. Half hour guns were also fired during the day.
Additional letters of condolence have also been addressed to me by the society of the Union Americana, by the Anglo-Saxon workingmen’s society of Valparaiso, and by the municipality of the department of Los Andres. * *
In addition to these public demonstrations, I have received very marked and numerous evidences of sympathy from private citizens, and have endeavored in return to evince my grateful sense of the universal and profound respect shown in Chili to the memory of the late President.
I have the honor to remain, very respectfully, your obedient servant,
Hon. William H. Seward,
Secretary of State.