Mr. Judd to Mr. Seward
Sir: On Saturday I hung out of the legation our “star-spangled banners,” and thus notified the people of Berlin that rebellion and slavery had met their doom; that their fortified capital had been taken; that their executive was a fugitive, and the rebel army of Richmond for the most part killed, wounded, and prisoners. No details reached us on that day except such as a rebel subsidized news company, located in London, chose to despatch to the continent. I knew enough, however, to warrant unfurling the flags, and to-day the happiness is increased by the cordial congratulations of true friends. The well-informed have expected the “collapse” ever since Sherman entered the “shell;” but, notwithstanding, the actual occurrence produced impressions as enthusiastic and exciting as though the result had not been expected.[Page 49]
The number of “I told you so’s” on the streets is rather remarkable. Still, the genuine reactionary and feudalist consoles himself with the wise belief that the nation, although successful in armed contest, is bankrupt, and that the finances will bring ruin to the (by him detested) republic. We can laugh at his “divine right,” ignorance, and conceit.
Your serenade announcement of non-intervention was a happy inspiration for the moment, as it accompanied the message of our triumph, and will soothe the alarms of those that know they deserve chastisement for their past conduct towards us during our depression.
The European rebel sympathizers, who for four years have gloated over the anticipated ruin of the republic, and have believed to see in this ruin the final end of all hope for that form of government in any part of the world, feel somewhat easier in the presence of the “armed democracy” successful at your assurances that justice and honor only are to be sought for and protected in its future career, and that the nation reinstated can afford to forget slights given us in times of affliction, however meanly it may think of the manhood of those who have sought the protection of such circumstances to utter their contumelies. I have only a short telegraphic synopsis of your remarks, and as construed by me they only laid aside thoughts of vengeance, but yield not a jot of justice and honor.
I am awaiting to hear that you have demanded of other nations that pirates and piracy shall be called by their right names, and treated according to the laws of the civilized world, and the honeyed phrase of “belligerent rights” should cease to be used, and the protection of neutral harbors for such craft should be withdrawn.
I am, sir, your obedient servant,
Hon. William H.Seward, Secretary of State, Washington,