Mr. Christiancy to Mr. Blaine.
Lima, Peru, April 13, 1881. (Received May 5.)
Sir: Referring to my dispatch, No. 277, upon the question, What constitutes the Government of Peru, I have the honor to inform you that nothing has since occurred which contributes to change the aspect of the question. Each government, from time to time, contrives to get statements of acts of adhesion signed by many citizens, and these often come from the same locality, the population being divided. But upon the whole the evidence, as yet, is quite clear that the overwhelming majority of the people of Peru are opposed to the provisional government, and still adhere to Piérola, and at present, if the Chilian army should leave to-morrow, the only safety of the members of the provisional government would be to leave with them.
In my own private opinion, however, if the provisional government had come up without any appearance of support from the Chilian authorities, it would have had many elements of popularity, and would probably have succeeded in obtaining the acquiescence of the people. This new government realizes the importance of an early peace with Chili, the necessity of which must be recognized by every thoughtful man, while that of Piérola professes to intend to carry on the war; but it has no means for the purpose at present, and my own opinion is that any efforts to do so will end in still greater calamities to Peru.
I have, &c.,