Mr. Seward to Sir F. Bruce

My Dear Sir Frederick: You are aware that in the apprehension of many considerate persons there has lingered a doubt whether Robert Lynch and the Rev. John McMahon, two of the persons who were convicted last year of participation in the aggression upon the Canadian border, are indeed morally culpable, although the judgment of the court is deemed unimpeachable.

On representation made by many intelligent and judicious persons, I have taken some pains to inquire concerning the cases specially named, and have submitted the same for review to the legal examining officer of this department, Mr. E. Peshine Smith.

Will you allow me to place a copy of Mr. Smith’s report in your hands unofficially, with the hope that if it shall, in any degree, impress you with the sentiment of favor towards those unfortunate persons you will communicate that sentiment to her Britannic Majesty’s government.

Believe me to be, very faithfully, yours,


Hon. Sir Frederick Wright Bruce, &c., &c., &c.