No. 204.
Mr. Bassett to Mr. Fish.

No. 164.]

Sir: I have the honor to send herewith (see inclosure A) the translation of an editorial in “Le Peuple,” which appeared on the morning of the 25th, though dated the 21st instant. I commend it to your perusal.

The article refers to the re-election of President Grant, and predicts as its consequence the early re-opening of the question of the annexation of San Domingo to the United States. I judge it to be a fair reflex of the prevailing sentiment here, in regard to that event. It will be seen that to obviate this annexation it suggests that steps should be taken by the Haytien government to conclude “a treaty of peace, commerce, and alliance with Baez.” My impression is that this idea was long ago suggested to this government. * * * * *

I have, &c.,

[Inclosure A.—Translation.]

A deplorable fact will infallibly come to pass in April or May next. This will be the annexation of the Dominican portion of the island to the United States of America. For our part, the re-election of General Grant to the presidential seat is the suspension of a new sword of Damocles over our heads. Our line of conduct from to-day should be the most serious, the most calm, and the most direct.

If we had the management of affairs, we would have taken immediate steps to conclude a treaty of peace, commerce, and alliance with Baez. The graceful manner with which he returned to us our four prisoners is a sufficient proof that he does not wish us any evil.

Moreover, would not a friendly and durable arrangement be more profitable than an enmity at once long, arduous, perilous, and disastrous? Let us calm our passions, let us enter frankly on the stage of action, and let us make use of the few friends that are left to us. There is one who, though somewhat hurt, will serve us with a joyous heart, and lead affairs to a happy conclusion. By not losing any time, we will triumph, and we will prevent, perhaps, annexation. Let us, therefore, be up and doing.

But the other one * * What other one? The other man. Very well! Give him some money, and say to him, frankly, “For the last three years thou hast done nothing but consume piasters. Be off quickly, if you know what is well for yourself.”

Things should be done squarely, that’s all!