Mr. Woodford to the President.

No. 46.]

Dear Mr. President: This morning I called at Señor Moret’s house and showed him a telegram which I proposed to send you. He said that he could not approve it officially, as he had not yet the necessary authority, but that he would personally work with me to secure the results therein indicated. After leaving him I then telegraphed you in cipher as follows:1

Señor Moret said to me this morning that justice to the Queen required him to assure me in the most positive manner that she had not been privy to or cognizant of any suggestion that she wished to talk with me about any possible cession of Cuba, either to the insurgents or to the United States; that she wished to hand over his patrimony unimpaired to her son when he should reach his majority; and that she would prefer to abdicate her regency and return to her Austrian home rather than be the instrument of ceding or parting with any of Spain’s colonies. * * * I am sure that Mr. Moret to-day regards this [parting with Cuba] as inevitable, and is only seeking the way in which to do it and yet save Spanish honor. He will probably fine the way to do it, even if he has to sacrifice himself. I hope this last may not be necessary. I do not believe it will be. Spain needs such men as he to-day, men of faith, courage, and sincerely patriotic purpose. * * *

Please note what I say in my dispatch about April 15. I do not suggest a time limit officially stated. That might embarrass you as well as the Spanish Government. But I do regard it as very essential that they should see that the United States mean business, and mean it now. * * *

Your resolute and wise action in getting authority from Congress to put the nation in condition both for defense and attack has made peace not only possible, but to-day I think it probable on such terms as you suggest. You see how my faith has strengthened.

Faithfully yours,

Stewart L. Woodford.
  1. Ante, p. 692.