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baya, near the city of Mexico, and to continue its sessions at stated intervals. But as the result of the failure of the states represented at the congress to ratify the agreements arrived at, and as the result of internal disorders, the plan was not carried out, although Mexico issued invitations for another congress in 1831, 1838, 1839, and 1840.
In 1847 the republics of Bolivia, Chile, Ecuador, New Granada, and Peru held a so-called "American Congress" at Lima, which drafted a treaty of confederation, one of commerce and navigation, a consular convention, and a postal convention. These treaties were not ratified and, therefore, the congress was without practical results. The preamble of the proposed treaty of confederation referred to the nations assembled as being "bound to each other by the ties of a common origin, a common language, a common religion, common customs, and the common cause for which they have struggled, as well as by their geographical position, the similarity of their institutions, and their analogous ancestors and reciprocal interests." It is evident, therefore, that this particular congress was Spanish-American rather than Pan American,2
In 1856 the republics of Peru, Chile, and Ecuador signed at Santiago a treaty of confederation, known as "the Continental Treaty," for the purpose of "cementing upon substantial foundations the union which exists between them, as members of the great American family, which are bound together by the ties of a common origin, similar institutions, and many other
• International American Conference, Vol. IV (Historical Appendix), p. 202.
signs of fraternity." This treaty was not ratified. It seems to have been dictated by a spirit of hostility to the United States as the result of the filibustering enterprise of William Walker in Central America.
The question of a "continental" league was discussed between Costa Rica and Colombia in 1862. After stating that, "There are not always at the head of the Great Republic moderate, just, and upright men as those who form the administration of President Lincoln," Costa Rica continued:
If our Republics could have the guaranty that they have nothing to fear from the United States of North America, it is indubitable that no other nation could be more useful and favorable to us. Under the shelter of her powerful eagles, under the influence of her wise institutions, and under the spur of her astonishing progress our newly-born nationalities should receive the impulse which they now need, and would be permitted to march with firm step, without experiencing the troubles and difficulties with which they have had to struggle. . . . In view of the above considerations, the idea has occurred to my government that a new compact might be draughted by which the United States of North America should bind themselves solemnly to respect, and cause others to respect, the independence, sovereignty, and territorial integrity of the sister republics of this continent; not to annex to their territory, either by purchase or by any other means, any part of the territory of the said republics; not to allow filibustering expeditions to be fitted up against the said nations, or to permit the rights of the latter to be in any way abridged or ignored.*
In January, 1864, the government of Peru issued invitations to all the governments of the Spanish na
International American Conference, Vol. IV (Historical Appendix).
tions of America to join in a congress to be held at Lima. The objects of the meeting as stated in the invitation were "to declare that the American nations represented in this congress form one single family," to improve postal facilities, to exchange statistical data, to provide for the settlement of all boundary disputes, and "to irrevocably abolish war, superseding it by arbitration, as the only means of compromising all misunderstandings and causes for disagreements between any of the South American republics." In accepting the invitation to the congress Colombia expressed the opinion that "the United States ought not to be invited, because their policy is adverse to all kind of alliances, and because the natural preponderance which a first-class power, as they are, has to exercise in the deliberations, might embarrass the action of the congress." So far as definite results were concerned, this congress at Lima was of no greater importance than its predecessors.
The French invasion of Mexico and the war between Spain and the republics on the west coast of South America in 1865-66 brought about a realization of their danger on the part of the Spanish-American republics and a fuller appreciation of the friendship of the United States. In the war between Spain on the one hand and the allied republics of Peru, Chile, Bolivia, and Ecuador on the other, the United States declared its neutrality as usual, but at an early period of the struggle Secretary Seward offered to mediate between the warring nations. Spain refused to accept this offer, and the war dragged on in a state of technical continuance " merely. The offer of mediation was again renewed by Secretary Fish, with the
result that a conference was held at the State Department in 1870 attended by the representatives of Spain, Peru, Chile, and Ecuador. While it was found impossible to conclude a formal peace, the delegates signed an armistice April 11, 1871, by which the de facto suspension of hostilities was converted into an armistice which was to continue indefinitely and could not be broken by any of the belligerents without three years' notice, given through the government of the United States, of intention to renew hostilities.*
Within ten years of the signature of this perpetual armistice, war broke out between Chile, on the one hand, and Peru and Bolivia, on the other (1879-83). The subject of dispute was the nitrate deposits of northern Chile. In 1880 Chile signed with Colombia an arbitration treaty which provided that in case the two parties should be unable in any given case to agree upon an arbitrator, the matter should be referred to the President of the United States. Article III of this treaty was as follows:
The United States of Colombia and the Republic of Chile will endeavor. at the earliest opportunity, to conclude with the other American nations conventions like unto the present, to the end that the settlement by arbitration of each and every international controversy shall become a principle of American public law.
A few weeks later, without waiting for the ratification of this treaty, Colombia issued invitations to the other Spanish-American republics to attend a conference at Panama for the purpose of securing their adherence to the treaty. The failure to in
• Moore, "Digest of International Law," Vol. VII, pp. 9-10.
Iclude the United States in the invitation to the conference was explained by our minister to Colombia as being due "to the reason that the position assigned to the government of the United States by the proposed treaty is to maintain and exercise a friendly and judicial impartiality in the differences which may arise between the powers of Spanish America." The continuance of the war between Chile and Peru led to the indefinite postponement of the conference.
On November 29, 1881, Secretary Blaine extended "to all the independent countries of North and South America an earnest invitation to participate in a general congress, to be held in the city of Washington on the 24th day of November, 1882, for the purpose of considering and discussing the methods of preventing war between the nations of America." He expressed the desire that the attention of the congress should be strictly confined to this one great object, and he expressed the hope that in setting a day for the assembling of the congress so far ahead, the war that was then in progress on the South Pacific coast would be ended, and the nations engaged would be able to take part in the proceedings. In this expectation Mr. Blaine was disappointed. The war between Chile and Peru continued, and the invitations to the conference were withdrawn.
Toward the close of President Cleveland's first administration, the Congress of the United States passed an act authorizing the President to invite the republics
• International American Conference, Vol. IV (Historical Appendix),
• Ibid., p. 255.