Mr. McLane to Mr. Buchanan.
Sir: I received, on the 29th ultimo, your dispatch No. 9, dated the 13th September, transmitting a copy of your last note (30th August, 1845) to Mr. Pakenham, relative to the Oregon question.Lord Aberdeen censures the rejection of the American proposition by Mr. Pakenham.
On the day following I was invited by Lord Aberdeen, in the note hereto appended, to an interview at his house in Argyll street, which I granted accordingly. The object of the interview, as I had anticipated, related exclusively to the posture in which the negotiations between the two governments had been placed by your note of the 30th August to Mr. Pakenham, and the withdrawal of the proposition which the President had previously directed.
Lord Aberdeen not only lamented but censured the rejection of our proposition by Mr. Pakenham, without referring it to his government.
* * He stated that if Mr. Pakenham had communicated the American proposition to the government here, as he was expected to have done, he, Lord Aberdeen, would have taken it up as the basis of his action, and entertained little doubt that he would have been enabled to propose modifications which might ultimately have resulted in an adjustment mutually satisfactory to both governments. * * *
I did not fail, however, to take the occasion to press upon Lord Aberdeen the great difficulties with which, in the present state of public sentiment in the United States, the President could concede even that which he had done in the position he had authorized. * * *
It was quite obvious to me that Lord Aberdeen had become convinced in his own mind, though in what way I do not pretend to conjecture, that the terms which it was his intention ultimately to propose or assent to would be accepted by the President, and that on this account he particularly regretted the interruption in the negotiation without affording an opportunity for that purpose.
* * * * * * * *
Hon. James Buchanan, Secretary of State.