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Conference which met at Washington in 1889, where the representatives of eighteen nations met to consider plans for the unification of their interests, and to promote their common welfare and prosperity.

Five years after the return of the plenipotentiaries to their homes from Panama, the government of Mexico issued invitations to a similar conference but for some reason it was not. held. (Seven years later in 1838, Mexico renewed the endeavor, with a view to "the union and close alliance of the American republics for the purpose of defense against European invasion, the acceptance of the friendly mediation of the neutral states for the settlement of all disagreements and disputes of whatever nature which may happen to arise between the sister republics, and for the framing and promulgation of a code of public laws to regulate their mutual relations.") The invitations were repeated in 1839 and in 1840, but without effect. At last, in 1847 five of the South American republics united in a conference at Lima, at

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the invitation of Peru, but the United States being at war with Mexico, was not represented. The results of this meeting were a treaty of confederation, another of commerce and navigation, and conventions for the regulation of consular and postal affairs.

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In 1864 the government of Peru made a second attemp bring the American nations together, and a Congress me Lima on the 14th of November, the birthday of Bolivar which Bolivia, Chile, Ecuador, Colombia, Guatemala, Pe Venezuela, and the Argentine Republic were represented. 1 sessions were secret and short, and were reported to have be turbulent, but nothing was accomplished.

In 1878, also at the invitation of Peru, another conferen was held at Lim

"to oppose the a Salvadorgressions of foreig force, and to form late the tables of th

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American Dee logue." Peru, th Argentine Repul

lic, Chile, Bolivia Ecuador, Venezu

ela, and Costa Rica were represented and also Cuba whose indepen dence had been recognized by some of the South Ameri

the adoption of some mode of arbitration to settle international differences; but the war in which Chile, Peru, and Bolivia were then engaged caused an indefinite postponement.

In the following year, however, the government of the United States issued similar invitations for a similar conference, to meet at Washington on the 24th of November, 1882, "for the purpose of considering and discussing methods of preventing war between the nations of America." "The President," said the secretary of state in his invitation, "desires that the attention of the congress shall be strictly confined to this one great object; that its sole aim shall be to seek a way of permanently averting the horrors of cruel and bloody combat between countries, often of one blood and speech, or the even worse calamity of internal commotion and civil strife; that it shall regard the burdensome and farreaching consequences of such struggles, the legacies of exhausted finances, of oppressive debt, of onerous taxation, of ruined cities, of paralyzed industries, of devastated fields, of ruthless conscription, of the slaughter of men, of the grief of the widow and the orphan, of embittered resentments, that long survive those who provoked them and heavily afflict the innocent generations that come after.

of America.

The President is especially desirous to have it understood that in putting forth this invitation the United States does not assume the position of counseling, or attempting, through the voice of the congress, to counsel any determinate solution of existing questions which may now divide any of the countries Such questions cannot properly come before the congress. Its mission is higher. It is to provide for the interests of all in the future, not to settle the individual differences of the present. For this reason especially the President has indicated a day for the assembling of the congress so far in the future as to leave good ground for hope that by the time

named the present situation on the South Pacific coast will be happily terminated, and that those engaged in the contest may take peaceable part in the discussion and solution of the general question affecting in an equal degree the well-being of all.

"It seems also desirable to disclaim in advance any purpose

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on the part of the United States to prejudge the issues to be presented to the congress. It is far from the intent of this government to appear before the congress as in any sense the protector of its neighbors or the predestined and necessary arbitrator of their disputes. The United States will enter into the deliberations of the congress on the same footing as the

other powers represented, and with


the loyal determination to approach any proposed solution, not merely in its own interest or with a view to asserting its own power, but as a single member among many co-ordinate and co-equal states. So far as the influence of this government may be potential it will be exerted in the direction of conciliating whatever conflicting interests of blood or government

or historical tradition may necessarily come together in response to a call embracing such vast and diverse elements."

Venezuela, Guatemala, Brazil, Salvador, Nicaragua, Honduras, Bolivia, Ecuador, and Mexico accepted, but in August, 1882, the invitations were withdrawn by Mr. Frelinghuysen, who had succeeded Mr. Blaine as secretary of state upon the death of General Garfield and the accession of Mr. Arthur to the presidency. The motive for the abandonment of the plan has been the subject of much controversy. The reason given in the circular issued by the secretary of state, was that "the peaceful condition of the South American republics, which was contemplated as essential to a profitable and harmonious assembling of the congress does not exist,"-Chile, Bolivia, and Peru being still engaged in war,-but the actual cause for the withdrawal of the invitation was the failure of the Congress of the United States to make the necessary appropriations for the expenses of the conference, and to grant authority for the appointment of delegates to represent this country.

President Arthur at no time desired or intended to prevent the consummation of the plan, which for sixty years had been discussed with so much favor among the American republics, but at once took measures to carry it into effect upon a scope much more comprehensive than had previously been proposed. He awaited the termination of the war upon the west coast of South America, and then introduced into the original plan of Bolivar a commercial feature which was very gratifying to the merchants and manufacturers of the United States who were beginning to feel the necessity of more extended and profitable markets for the disposition of the surplus products of the farms, the mines, the forests, and the factories of this country. Upon his recommendation, Congress authorized the appointment of a commission to visit the other American

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