Mr. Seward to the Marquis de Montholon
Sir: I have the honor to call your attention to two orders or decrees which purport to have been made on the 26th of July last, by Prince Maximilian, who [Page 382] claims to be emperor in Mexico, in which he declares that he has committed the direction of the department of war in that country to General Osmont, chief of the staff of the French expeditionary corps; and that he has committed the direction of the department of the treasury to Mr. Friaut, intendant-in-chief of the same corps.
The President thinks it proper that the Emperor of France should be informed that the assumption of administrative functions at this time by the aforenamed officers of the French expeditionary corps under the authority of the Prince Maximilian is not unlikely to be injurious to good relations between the United States and France, because it is liable to be regarded by the Congress and people of the United States as indicating a course of proceeding on the part of France incongruous with the engagement which has been made for the withdrawal of the French expeditionary corps from that country.
Accept, sir, a renewed assurance of my high consideration.
Marquis de Montholon, &c., &c., &c.