Mr. King to Mr. Seward

No. 33.]

Sir: I am reminded by the date of my letter that on this day our honored President renews his vow of devotion to the Constitution and laws of our country, and enters upon the second term of his administration. I desire to offer to him and to the faithful counsellors who form his cabinet my heartfelt congratulations on the events of the past few months and the happy auspices under which he resumes his good work, as well as my earnest wishes that, by the blessing of God, he may realize, within a brief period, his ardent hope for peace, liberty, and union.

Nothing has transpired in Rome since my last despatch calling for special comment. The carnival passed off without any disturbance, and was very generally participated in, as well by foreigners as by Romans.

I had an official interview with Cardinal Antonelli a few days since, and a very frank talk about affairs in America. His eminence seemed to appreciate fully the events of the late campaigns, and to look forward hopefully to the speedy cessation of hostilities and the submission of the insurgents to the constituted authorities of the country.

I availed myself of an opportunity during the current week to converse with the French ambassador, the Count de Sartiges, about affairs in Mexico and the rumor, very current in Europe, that Maximilian had ceded certain provinces to Napoleon as security for material and financial aid, of which ex-Senator Gwin was to be viceroy, and which was to form the nucleus of a “confederate” colony. The count treated the story as an absurdity, and repeated what he said to me some months ago, that the Emperor of the French would withdraw all his troops from Mexico at the earliest opportunity.

Bishop Lynch is still in Rome, though in no accredited official position. I hear, however, that he and those who sympathize with him profess confident [Page 154] hopes of some European demonstration in behalf of the so-called Confederate States on or immediately after this the 4th day of March. I do not myself entertain any apprehensions on the subject. Europe has enough to do at home, while the United States of America have abundantly proved that they can take care of themselves, and neither ask nor fear any foreign intervention.

I have the honor to be, with great respect, your obedient servant,


Hon. William H. Seward, Secretary of State.