« 前へ次へ »
know if I could depend upon him in the last extremity, he raised many difficulties on account of the limited time, of the many very heavy payments which they had been obliged to make lately for the cargoes of the Greek prizes purchased by them, which had entirely absorbed their cash, &c. He also made some objection to the security of such bills, on account of my being obliged to leave the regency: to that I answered, that I should not desire any one to become my security, as the same objection would naturally occur to them, and that if I should give bills, I must candidly say that if the vessel should not afterwards be permitted to depart with her cargo (as I had some apprehensions, from the shameful conduct of the dey, might be the case, in violation of his word) the bills would not be paid, as the proceeds of the cargo, at the place to which she might go, must be depended upon towards discharging such bills. He said he would consider the subject, and give me an answer on Friday as to the practicability of getting the money, if it must be had, and the terms which would be expected for it.
On Friday I made the last effort to effect an accommodation, and flattered myself with some little prospect of success, as the minister of the marine and some others of the principal officers of the regency, had expressed their regret at what had happened, and had promised to do every thing in their power to induce the dey to alter his determination, if the dey should introduce the subject before them, on this day, when they all met him at the palace to go with him to the mosque, it being the mahomedan sabbath, but they candidly acknowledged that if he did not bring the matter forward, no one would dare to introduce it, as they knew the obstinacy of his temper, and dreaded the effects of his resentment.
I had communicated to the minister of the marine the proposition which I made in the palace on Wednesday, for the dey to take this cargo on account, and to pay the balance, if any,
in cash, &c. which he did not hesitate to declare he thought highly reasonable, and such as should be satisfactory; but at the same time remarked on the inflexible obstinacy of the dey, when he had once taken his resolution.
At one o'clock my drogerman brought me a message from the dey, which he said was his last, and irrevocably fixed, viz. that I should to-morrow morning pay into the treasury 27,000 Spanish dollars, which he claimed as the balance of annuities from the United States, and then depart from the regency with my family, and all other citizens of the United States in Algiers, in the ship which had brought the stores, in fulfilment of treaty stipulations, and which he had refused to receive; or that the ship and cargo, with all other Americans now in Algiers, should be detained, the former confiscated, the latter kept in slavery, and that war should be instantly declared against the United States.
This message determined the business, and closed every door of hope for an accommodation. It was confirmed by the minister of marine, who said that the subject having been introduced by the dey in their presence, he and the other ministers had urged every thing they dared, to induce the dey to alter his determination, and to accept my proposition, but in vain.. He was inflexible, and the alternative must be taken immediately.
I had now my ultimate choice to make, between the payment of the money, if it could be obtained, and the certain loss of the vessel and cargo, worth much more than the sum claimed by the dey, and the immediate slavery of more than twenty American citizens (including myself and family) now Algiers, with the highest probability of many American vessels and their crews being captured before it would be possible to give notice of what had happened, to enable them to consult their safety by remaining in port, as the port of Algiers had been shut since the sailing of their cruizers on the 13th instant, and of course no opportunity had offered to communicate an account of these transactions to any of our consuls in the Mediterranean. I therefore made my
the money, if it could be obtained, especially as the departure of the Allegany would afford an opportunity of giving the most speedy information to every part of this sea, and guard American vessels against falling into the hands of the Algerine cruizers, now out; as I can now have but little doubt of the dey's having given orders to his cruizers, on their sailing, to detain and send in such American vessels as they may find. For it must clearly be seen that he has no reasonable or justifiable ground for his present demand and conduct; and I am in a great measure confirmed in my apprehensions entertained and expressed in my last letters to the honourable the secretary of state, that after the truce with Portugal and the protection of the Sicilians by the English, he would make war upon some nation to employ his cruizers; and that none offered a better
prospect than the vessels of the United States.
The present posture of affairs between the United States and Great Britain, just on the point of open hostilities, would afford another guard and security against our sending a force into this séa to protect our commerce now here, or revenge the insult. and injury inflicted upon us ; especially, too, as under present
election to pay
circumstances he must suppose that it would be gratifying to the British, with whom there is every reason to believe, he has a treaty offensive and defensive.
I sent for Mr. Bacri, and informed him of my determination to pay the money and depart from Algiers, and should depend upon him for it. But that if, after paying the money, the vessel and Americans should not be allowed to depart from Algiers (which I had reason to apprehend from the dey's outrageous and extraordinary conduct might happen, notwithstanding his declaration) the bills which I might draw would not be paid at Gibraltar; for that I must depend upon the sale of the cargo of this vessel to meet the bills as far as it would go ; and that I gave him this information, that he might know the ground on which he stood. He replied that he should have full faith in the bills on that condition, and then observed that the sacrifices which must be made to obtain the money at the moment, could not be less than 25 per cent. After some further discussion of the subject, and knowing the impossibility of obtaining the money from any other quarter (about which I had made en(quiry for two days past), I agreed to give him the advance, which brought the amount to 33,750 dollars: and in the evening gave him a bill, at 30 days sight, on John Gavino, esq. consul of the United States at Gibraltar, in favour of Moise Levy Valensen, of Gibraltar, value received of Jacob Cain Bacri, of Algiers, on account of the United States of America, to pay a balance claimed by the dey of Algiers, for annuities from the United States, the dey having refused to receive the naval and military stores sent from the United States agreeably to treaty stipulation, to pay such balance as might be due. Í also stipulated with Mr. Bacri, that he should cause the money to be paid into the treasury to-morrow morning, so as not to give any ground for detaining the vessel, or raising any new difficulties on that account, which he promised to do.
I gave to John Norderling, esq. his Swedish majesty's agent general at Algiers, a letter accepting his friendly offer to take care of my property left in Algiers, and also requesting his kindness to be extended to any American citizens who might arrive in Algiers after my departure, or be unhappily brought in by the cruizers of the
regency. The following is an extract from my letter to Mr. Norderling:
“ As my departure from Algiers is compulsive, I leave no person directly charged with the affairs of the United States of America in this regency. But should any of our citizens arrive here, or be unhappily brought in, your kindness to them
will be gratefully acknowledged, and the necessary and reason able expenses for the support of such as are destitute, will be paid by the government of the United States."
Through the day of Friday, and in the evening, my acquaintance of all descriptions called upon me, and the unfeigned sorrow expressed by all of them, of every denomination, sufficiently evinced the regard they had for us. And the undisguised disapprobation and disgust expressed by all classes at. the dey's conduct, must, I think, end in some disastrous event for him.
Very early on Saturday morning the drogerman came to my house and informed me that Jacob Bacri had paid the money to the regency; and soon after the minister of the marine sent for me to go to the marine, where he informed me it was the dey's order that myself and all the other Americans should embark immediately, and depart from Algiers. He expressed his regret at what had happened, and declared that it was against his strong advice and wishes, hoped that every thing might yet be accommodated, after the dey's phantasy should have passed, &c. I intimated to him my suspicions and apprehensions that orders had been given to the cruizers which sailed on the 13th instant, to capture American vessels. He assured me that if such orders had been given by the dey to the commander of the squadron, he was ignorant of it, and that he hoped it was not the case. How far his reply is to be relied on I am not able :
I requested the minister to give me a certificate of the ship Allegany having been sent away by order of the dey, that in case she should be met by any of the cruizers now out, they might not molest or stop her. This he declined, saying that their cruizers were all at the east of Algiers, and that if any one should molest or detain the vessel, the dey would punish the commander most severely, &c. This did not satisfy me, but I could not prevail upon him to give the passport.
When I parted from the minister I was about to return to my own house, to accompany my wife on board the vessel; but he said I must not return there again, but must go on board, as the vessel was getting under way, and that the drogerman would go up to conduct my family down and on board, which was accordingly done, and the vessel got out of the port about seven o'clock, A. M.
The persons embarked on board the Allegany, besides the captain and crew (consisting of 17 persons), are myself, my wife, and my son (who arrived from the United States, via Gibraltar, on the 15th instant), Mr. Jonathan S. Smith, of
Philadelphia, who has been in Algiers these two years past, with some coffee for sale, which he has thought proper to abandon, and says he shall seek for indemnification from the United States. I advised him to sell it, as it was not possible for the ship to take it on board, as she was entirely filled with the cargo which she brought out, but he did not think proper to comply with my advice; Mr. John Vallet, a naturalized citizen of the United States, whom I have mentioned in my letter of the 29th of May, a copy of which I have now the honour to inclose, as well as of that of the 30th of April; and a Mr. Pinto, also a naturalized citizen of the United States, certificate from South Carolina.
On the evening of our leaving Algiers we spoke a British letter of marque, bound to Malta, and as the weather did not admit of sending a letter on board, I desired the captain to inform the American consul at that place that I had been ordered from Algiers; and, as there was no doubt but the Algerine cruizers would capture any American vessels they might meet, desired that he would give notice thereof to all American vessels in Malta, and extend the information in every direction possible.
Yesterday we were boarded by his Britannic majesty's brig Goshawk, which was going with a convoy to Alicant and Majorca, to the commander of which brig I gave letters to our consuls in those places, a copy of which I have the honour to inclose, and requested the said commander to give the notice of my being ordered from Algiers, &c. to any American vessels he might meet at sea, and make the same known wherever he might go.
I shall forward my circular to any places to which we may meet vessels going, until I reach Gibraltar, whence I shall disperse my circulars by every opportunity which may offer, to all ports of this sea, as well as to the ports in the Atlantic.
The officers of the Goshawk who boarded us, gave information that the British orders in council, laying restraints on neutral commerce, had been revoked, and that the British cruizers had orders not to molest American vessels, as an evidence of which he did not even ask for a sight of the Allegany's papers.
I took passports for the ship from the French and Spanish consuls before I left Algiers. The English consul did not furnish any, although I applied to him for that purpose. I did not ask them from the Swede or the Dane, as they have no ves sels in this sea.