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The Chautauqua-Century Press, Meadville, Pa., U. S. A.
THE diplomatic history of the United States is a record of which any nation might be proud. Without a corps of trained diplomatists like those to whom the management of the foreign relations of the European governments are intrusted, without an army or a navy to enforce its claims, and with only a sense of justice and a consciousness of right, this country has succeeded through a century in maintaining its dignity and protecting its national honor. From the skillful and patient endeavors of Franklin, Adams, and Jefferson to secure the respect and recognition of the greater powers of the world for the feeble colonies then struggling for independence, to the able and courageous efforts of the present administration to protect the fisheries and sealing grounds of our citizens, it is a record of peaceful victories. There have been some incidents like those which led to the Mexican War, and the recent legislation against the Chinese, concerning which there may be a difference of opinion; but as a whole the influence of American diplomacy has had a wholesome and permanent effect upon the other nations of the world.
This little volume was not intended to be a complete
record of our foreign relations, nor has there been any attempt to treat the grave questions of dispute with other governments that have arisen from time to time in a technical or thorough manner, but the purpose has been to present a simple narrative of the principal incidents in our diplomatic history in a form that will enable them to be properly understood by those who are not versed in international law.
The author desires to acknowledge his obligations to Mr. George E. Vincent, of Buffalo, who prepared the chapter on The General View of Europe in the Nineteenth Century; Prof. Romyn Hitchcock, of the Smithsonian Institution, who prepared the chapter on China; to Mr. Winfield Scott Bird, of Philadelphia, who prepared the chapters on Japan, Korea, Samoa, and Liberia; to Mr. Henry L. Bryan, secretary of the Bureau of the American Republics, and Mr. Jesse Siddall Reeves, of Johns Hopkins University, who assisted in the preparation of the chapters on our relations with the European nations.
WILLIAM ELEROY CURTIS.