[321] *Mr. Gosselin to Lieutenant Campbell.


Sir: I have just received a dispatch from his excellency the minister of marine and the colonies, containing summary and formal orders relative [Page 46] to your vessel, and the notification I am obliged to make you in this respect, do not doubt, is very painful to me; nevertheless, the communication which I had the honor to send you on the 11th of last month, where I presented to you the possibility of the very measures which are now taken, and in consequence of which you declared to me that you would be in condition to go to sea in about a week from that date, must have prepared you to encounter them.

I regret, sir, to inform you thai, the government of His Majesty the Emperor has decided that I shall order the “Rappahannock to leave the port of Calais at the next high tide after the receipt of this letter;” and if you fail to comply with this command you will not be permitted to leave this port until the end of hostilities between the United States and the confederates.

[322] The long stay of your vessel at Calais, and above all the time which has elapsed since the above-mentioned notice, makes me hope, sir, that from now until *midnight it will be possible for you so to hasten your last preparations that the decision with which I have just had the honor to make you acquainted shall be executed.

I have to add, sir, that in spite of my delicate official relations with you, I desire extremely that the brief delay accorded to you should be sufficient. Is it necessary for me to repeat, sir, at the moment of your departure, that the reports and answers which I have had to make relative to your vessel have always been truthfully in accordance with my personal and impartial investigations, and that my explanations have always been loyal, sincere, and complete? I have to request you to acknowledge the receipt of this letter, on account of its importance.

Accept, sir, the expression of my very distinguished consideration.

Le commissaire de Pinscription maritime,


M. Campbell,
Lieutenant, Commanding the Steamer Rappahannock.