to Mr. Morgan.
Washington, June 1, 1881.
Sir: As the relations between the Government of the United States and that of Mexico happily grow more amicable and intimate, it is but natural that a disposition should in like manner develop itself between the citizens of the respective countries to seek new means of fostering their material interests, and that the ties which spring from commercial interchange should tend to grow and strengthen with the growing and strengthening spirit of good will which animates both peoples. That this spirit exists is one of the most evident proofs that the frank and conciliatory policy of the United States towards Mexico has borne and is bearing good fruit. It is especially visible in the rapidly extending desire on the part of the citizens of this country to take an active share in the prosecution of those industrial enterprises for which the magnificent resources of Mexico offer so broad and promising a field, and in the responsive and increasing disposition which is manifest on the part of the Mexican people to welcome such projects. No fact in the historical relations of the two great republics of the northern continent is more fraught with happy promise for both, and it is a source of especial gratification to this government that the jealousies and distrusts which have at times in the past clouded the perfect course of the mutual relations of the two governments are thus yielding to the more wholesome spirit of reciprocal frankness and confidence.
It seems to me proper at this time, when a new administration has constitutionally and peacefully come into power in Mexico, devoted to fulfilling and extending the just policy of its predecessor, to call your attention to those general precepts which, in the judgment of the President, should govern the relations between the two republics, and to bear testimony to which will be your most important duty as the diplomatic representative of the United States.
The record of the last fifteen years must have removed from the minds of the enlightened statesmen of Mexico any possibly lingering doubt touching the policy of the United States toward her sister republic. That policy is one of faithful and impartial recognition of the independence and the integrity of the Mexican nation. At this late day it needs no disclaimer on our part of the existence of even the faintest desire in the United States for territorial extension south of the Rio Grande. The boundaries of the two republics have been long settled in conformity with the best jurisdictional interests of both. The line of demarkation is not conventional merely. It is more than that. It separates a Spanish-American people from a Saxon-American people. It divides one great nation from another with distinct and natural finality. The increasing prosperity of both commonwealths can only draw into closer union the friendly feeling, the political sympathy, and the correlated interests which their history and neighborhood have created and encouraged. In all your intercourse with the Mexican Government and people it must be your chiefest endeavor correctly to reflect this firm conviction of your government.
It has been the fortunate lot of this country that long years of peace and prosperity, of constant devotion to the arts and industries which make the true greatness of a nation, have given to the United States an abundance of skilled labor, a wealth of active and competent enterprise, [Page 762]and a large accumulation of capital, for which even its own vast resources fail to give full scope for the untiring energy of its citizens. It is but natural, therefore, that a part of this great store of national vitality should seek the channels which are offered by the wonderful and scarcely developed resources of Mexico, and that American enterprise and capital should tend to find their just employment in building up the internal prosperity of that republic on like firm bases, and in opening new commercial relationship between the two countries.
It is a source of profound gratification to the Government of the United States that the political condition of Mexico is so apparently and assuredly in the path of stability, and the administration of its constitutional government so regular, that it can offer to foreign capital that just and certain protection without which the prospect even of extravagant profit will fail to tempt the extension of safe and enduring commercial and industrial enterprise. It is still more gratifying that with a full comprehension of the great political and social advantages of such a mode of developing the material resources of the country, the Government of Mexico cordially lends its influence to the spirit of welcome and encouragement with which the Mexican people seem disposed to greet the importation of wealth and enterprise in their midst. The progress now making in this direction by the national government of Mexico is but an earnest of the great good which may be accomplished when the intimate and necessary relations of the two countries and peoples are better understood than now. To conduce to this better understanding must be your constant labor. While, therefore, carefully avoiding all appearance of advocacy of any individual undertaking which citizens of the United States may desire to initiate in Mexico, you will take every opportunity which you may deem judicious to make clear the spirit and motive which control this movement in the direction of developing Mexican resources, and will impress upon the Government of Mexico the earnest wish and hope felt by the people and government of this country that these resources may be multiplied and rendered fruitful for the primary benefit of the Mexican people themselves; that the forms of orderly, constitutional, and stable government may be strengthened as domestic wealth increases and as the conservative spirit of widely distributed and permanent vested interests is more and more felt; that the administration of the Mexican finances, fostered by these healthful tendencies, may be placed upon a firm basis; that the rich sections of the great territory of the republic may be brought into closer intercommunication; in a word, that Mexico may quickly and beneficially attain the place toward which she is so manifestly tending as one of the most powerful, well-ordered, and prosperous states in the harmonious system of western republics.
In future dispatches more detailed instructions will be given you touching certain points of interest to the two governments in the direction of an enlarged reciprocal trade and interchange of commodities. It is my present design simply to acquaint you with the President’s views and feeling toward Mexico and the spirit which will animate his policy.
You can read this dispatch to the minister of foreign affairs, and, if he desires, leave a copy of it with him.
I am, &c.,