Mr. Woodford to Mr. Sherman.


Spanish minister for foreign affairs sent for me this afternoon, and, after full and most friendly interview, asked me to send the following dispatch, which I give in his exact words. I expressed no opinion, and did not commit my Government in any manner. Spanish request begins here: “The sending of two war ships for the sole purpose of carrying succor to the necessitous inhabitants of Cuba not only seems superfluous, but affords grounds for fearing that their presence in two different ports of the island, situated at a great distance from one another, and rarely visited by men-of-war, might be interpreted, no doubt against the desire of the Government of the United States, as favorable to their plans by those who strive to thwart the will of the majority of the Cuban people, and so prolong a rebellion which is rapidly being quelled by the political and military measures applied soundly. It would therefore be most desirable that the relief prepared in the United States should be sent to Cuba on board merchant vessels.” Spanish request ends here.