Mr. Maynard to Mr. Evarts.
Constantinople , March 6, 1878. (Received April 3.)
Sir: I have sent you to-day a cipher dispatch, of which a copy is inclosed, announcing the signing of the preliminaries of peace by the Turkish and Russian plenipotentiaries, at San Stefano, on the 3d instant. Though accomplished at a late hour of the day, it was reported here the same evening in a form to demand credence had there not been so many similar reports previously which proved unfounded. The minister of war, who called at the legation the following day, gave full confirmation. He added that it was a very sorrowful event for Turkey. As San Stefano will henceforth bear some distinction as the locality of this treaty, I inclose a short historic notice of it.
The ratifications of the treaty will be exchanged, I understand, at St. Petersburg, where Turkey will be represented by a special envoy. His excellency Raouf Pasha, minister of war, will probably be selected for that duty. The Ottoman Government will shortly, I presume, dispatch an ambassador of the Porte to the Russian capital.
A congress of the European powers is proposed, to meet at some point on the continent. Berlin has been indicated. Several days ago it was published that Russia had invited the United States to participate, and I have been frequently asked whether we should probably accept the invitation. I have invariably replied that I had no information whatever on the subject, but that our traditional policy of friendly relations with all the European powers, entangling alliances with none, would undoubtedly be observed. Should the congress assemble, as indicated, the Department of State will naturally expect the report of its proceedings from some of my colleagues nearer by rather than from me.
I have, & c.,
- Dr. Paspati is a Sciote, and one of the few who escaped the massacre of that island in 1822. He was then very young and was taken to America, where he received his education. Constantinople has been his residence many years, and he is reckoned the most learned antiquarian in the city.↩
- Byzantine Studies, Topographical and Historical. By A. G. Paspati. Constantinople, 1877. 4 to, 416 pp. Modern Greek.↩