Celebrating 17 years

The Relations Between
Spain and the United States
Page 2

Lousiana and the Middle West Territory (1763 - 1795)

« Continued from previous page

5. SPAIN AND UNITED ESTATES BETWEEN 1787-1795.5.1.

The French revolution and United States.

In 1787-88 the feelings of the federalists were running very high. They controlled the Congress, they were working on the guarantee of future western states related and allied, and they achieved to get a majority in favor of a strong government. On the 13th of September 1788, a new constitution of federal court that established a strong presidency was approved. On the 4th of March 1789 G. Washington assumed office as President of the Federation.

Since August 1786 when the Congress approved the Spanish proposal about borders, the Hispano-American relations grew cold because of the internal problems of the Confederation, the Northwest Ordinance and the pacts between Spain and the western conventions. Since June 1789, once achieved the new Union, the United States resumed the negotiations with Spain. The base of the negotiation was the Order in Council of the 8th of July 1787, inspired by Floridablanca, and that hardly changed the Spanish position. Spain wanted to invalidate the British- North American treaty about borders, to establish the borders according to the proposal of 1786 (already accepted by the Congress), to keep the control of the navigation and trade trough the Mississippi, and to maintain the Middle West as a free territory [67] . But the United States nature had changed, between 1789 and 1790, the Presidency was already in conditions to show a strong attitude and refuse the Spanish offers.

Since 1790 the Spanish envoy J. Jaudenes informed Floridablanca about his interviews with Jefferson and Wilkinson and confirmed this change in the attitude of the American government [68] . The Presidency was determined to solve the matter of the west disregarding the pacts with Spain. The Congress also organized the southern middle regions as the Southwest territory, and developed definite ways of getting separatists as supporters, like J. White. At the same time, G. Washington had created an army with 15.000 soldiers to occupy the above-mentioned regions to the Mississippi [69] . If Spain didn't give way on its positions, the Congress would start war. The North American agents in the area already started to incite the population against Spain. This aggressive policy soon would give good results: Kentucky was recognized as a State within the Union in 1792 and Tennessee in 1796.

The new strength of the Presidency, after the constitutional changes, wasn't the only reason of the different attitude and style of the Federation. The French Revolution had a lot to do with that. The United States established very soon cooperation links with the revolutionary France. A probable attack to Louisiana would remain integrated within the international conjecture following the Spanish example of the Seven Years war, thanks to which B. G·lvez conquered and consolidated a border on the east shore of the Mississippi and the parallel 31. The ones who dominated the political scene, like Jefferson, were pro-French and they were in favour of the intervention. The anglophiles and the moderated federalists were far from the political first line. The representative of the National Assembly E. GÍnet promised French aid in a war against Spain. On the 8th of April 1791, the Congress accepted the GÍnet Plan of attacking Louisiana [70] . They would launch an attack along the Mississippi line. The action would be coordinated with the French army, that would close the Gulf of Mexico, would attack New Orleans, and finally it would go up the Mississippi to join the two fronts. General Clark commanded the troupes.

The Spain of Carlos III was more worried about the border in the Pyrenees than about the matters in America. The main priority was the possible war against the revolutionary France. In this circumstances the Louisiana of E. MirÛ seemed to be neglected by the Court. Even Wilkinson gave up hope of the separatist project, even though before the Spanish authorities he still insisted on the independence means. Wilkinson increased his demands. As well as the free navigation, New Orleans should be a free port, the rewards should rise for the people who participated on the revolt and for himself (600.000 acres of land, 700.000 pesos as compensation and payment for the expenses and services performed, plus 2.000 pesos a year). Wilkinson also demanded that Louisiana increased the purchase of tobacco to the middle regions to 10 million pounds to absorb most of the production (we must take into account that one of Wilkinson's businesses was the expedition of tobacco to Louisiana) [71] .

Spain needed a change of strategy and even of representatives. In 1791 a new governor arrived in Louisiana, Francisco Luis Hector de Corondelet. His objectives were to avoid war, to recuperate the dialog with the United States to reach a stable agreement and to reinforce the border in the Mississippi. Corondelet sent a clear message to the Congress, both the will of a negotiated arrangement and the warning about any attack. It's possible that the United States still were not too confident on their own strength, but the truth is that "jacobins" and anglophiles agreed on avoiding war with Spain and with Great Britain. That's why they expelled E. GÍnet from the Congress. Without the French representative, the revolutionary ardor clamed down and the negotiations started. They reached an agreement with Great Britain in November 1794, by which the British government committed to evacuate its advanced posts in Ohio, whereas the United States recognized the British positions in the northern part of the territory. In October 1795 they reached and agreement with Spain, the Treaty of San Lorenzo [72] .

5.2 the treaty of san lorenzo.

The Treaty of San Lorenzo was the result of all these new political and military circumstances and of the American outer actions. The diplomatic tactic of the United States was very lucid. First, it defused momentarily the North front by entering into an agreement with Great Britain. This way they were free to put pressure on Spain, which wasn't in conditions to make war in North America.

In November 1974, Thomas Pickney arrived in Madrid and the delegate of Carlos IV, Godoy, was the man in charge of negotiating with him. In the first official meeting, on the 28th of June 1795, it was very clear that the United States were not interested anymore in a global agreement but on a friendship treaty. The United States only wanted an agreement that recognized the new reality of the middle regions and the free navigation and trade. In the following meetings, Pickney insisted on that the agreement would guarantee security for Louisiana, and he pointed out that the west was their natural space of extension. Spain gave way on the matter of the parallel 31, but not on the Mississippi. Pickney was in the position to get it, and he increased the pressure. On the 24th of October he asked for passports. This threat of breaking got Godoy to react, and then he proposed to establish in New Orleans a commercial store for 3 years renewable. In return the Unied States would pay their war debts with Spain. Pickney didn't accept and he demanded that the war debts were studied separately. Finally Godoy accepted [73] . The border would be situated in the middle of the Mississippi, therefore, Spain would have to abandon its posts in the eastern side of the river. Along the river there would be posts with consuls and commissaries from both parts to guarantee freedom and security. A commercial store would be established in New Orleans for the American traders. On the 27th of October 1795 both parts meet in San Lorenzo el Real to sign the treaty. It was a great success of the American delegation, that undid the border built by G·lvez and MirÛ and that established a basis for the annexation of Louisiana.

6. CONCLUSION.

The Treaty of San Lorenzo meant much more than the end of the Spanish commercial monopoly. It was the beginning of the end for the Spanish Louisiana. The transfer of the Eastern Shore of the Mississippi meant the abandon of all the military posts and the Spanish colonies in that zone and the effective disappearance of the border. The retaining wall against the demographic, economical and politico- military pressure disappeared. The United States didn't have any more important obstacles for their expansion towards west and South.

As regards Mexico and the British colonies in the north of Illinois, Ohio and Michigan, the United States acted in a similar way. First, they used demographic and commercial pressure. Second, the diplomatic and military pressure. And finally, they occupied the territory. Agreements and treaties accompanied all the process, but they never were definitive or unquestionable. In 1796, G. Washington, in his leaving discourse in the Congress, he explained this behavior distinguishing between the temporary alliances and the permanent alliances. The first ones were justified because the United States are a commercial republic whose basic interest is trade, which requires concrete agreements for each moment and situation. The permanent alliances, on the contrary, lead to the detriment of this basic interest, they are opposed to the own being of the "Commercial Federation". When Jefferson was taking over the Presidency, in his discourse he restated this line as the basis of the American foreign policies: "(...) peace, trade and sincere friendship with all the nations; complicated alliances, with none (...) [74] . Again, the only one who confirmed this objective was the lucid Conde Aranda. He pointed out that the United States would never be friend of France, or Spain, or enemy of Great Britain [75] .

As regars the middle ground, they had 3 constituent phases. During the first one (the first years of transit between the Confederation and the Federation) the incorporated States were Georgia 1788, South Carolina 1788 and North Carolina 1789. The second phase corresponds with the period of settlement and reinforcement of the federal government. The States incorporated were Kentucky in 1792, Tennessee in 1796, Ohio in 1803, Louisiana in 1812, Mississippi in 1817 and Illinois in 1818.

With the Treaty of San Lorenzo, a new phase of Hispano-American relations started. Spain elected a new governor in 1797, Gayoso de Lemos. Until then he was the governor in Natchez. He was the one in charge to give way on the defensive line, which G·lvez and MirÛ built up so arduously in the easr of the Mississippi [76] .

 

End Notes

[1] Cantillo, A.; Tratados, convenios y declaraciones de paz y de comercio que han hecho con las potencias estranjeras los monarcas Espaòles de la Casa de Borbûn desde el aòo 1700 hasta el dìa. Imp. de Alegria y Charlain, Madrid, 1843. Pp.489 and ss.

[2] Serrano y Sanz, M.; Documentos historicos de la Florida y la Luisiana. Madrid, 1915. Pp.265 and ss., quoted in Navarro Latorre, J.; Conspiraciûn espaòla?. 1787-1789. Contribuciûn al Estudio de las primeras relaciones entre Espaòa y los Estados Unidos de NorteAmérica. Instituro Fernando El Catûlico, Zaragoza, 1949.P.4.

[3] Montero de Pedro, J.; Espaòles en Nueva Orleans y la Luisiana. Ed. de Cultura hispánica, Madrid, 1979. Pp. 7 and ss, p.22.

[4] Montero de Pedro, J.; Espaòles...op.cit.,pp.25.

[5] Montero de Pedro, J.; Espaòles...op.cit.,pp.25 and ss.

[6] Armillas Vicente, J.; El Misisipì, frontera de Espaòa: Espaòa y los Estados Unidos ante el tratado de San Lorenzo. Fundaciûn Fernando El Catûlico, Zaragoza, 1977. P.16.

[7] Montero de Pedro, J.; Espaòles...op.cit.,p. 124

[8] A.H.N., Estado, leg. 3.884. Despacho de Aranda a Grimaldi de 13 de enero de 1777. Also in Yela Utrilla, J.; Espaòa ante la indenpendencia de los Estados Unidos. Academia Mariana, Lérida, 1925. vol 2,pp.42-43.

[9] Montero de Pedro, J.; Espaòles...op. cit.,p.44.

[10] Montero de Pedro, J.; Espaòles... op. cit.,pp.41 and ss., Serrano Sanz.,M.; "Relaciûn de la campaòa de G·lvez",Documentos...op.cit.,pp.343-352, quoted in Navarro Latorre, J.; Conspiraciûn espaòla?... op.cit.,p.4.

[11] Montero de Pedro, J.; Espaòles...pp.44-45, Thompson, B.P.;Spain: forgotten ally of the American Revolution. Christopher Publishing House, North Quincy, Mass.,1976.P.102.

[12] Montero de Pedro, J.; Espaòles...op.cit.,pp.41 and ss.

[13] Flagg, Bemis, S.; The diplomacy of The american revolution. Indiana University press, 1967.

pp.260-261.

[14] Sánchez Montero, R.; "La misiûn de John jay en Espaòa". Anuario de Estudios Americanos, n∫23.

[15] Armillas Vicente, J.; El Misisipì...op. cit.,pp.16 and ss.

[16] Yela Utrilla, J.; Espaòa...op. cit.,vol.I, pp.477-480. Cantillo, A.; Tratados...op.cit.,pp.474-475.

[17] Montero de Pedro, J.; Espaòles...op.cit.,pp.124.

Montero de Pedro, J.; Espaòles...op.cit.,pp.124.

[18] Vicens Vives, J.; Historia social op.cit.,y econûmica de Espaòa y América. Vol. IV, Vicens-Vives. Barcelona, 1972. Pp.221-223.

[19] Willi, P.A.; Los Estados Unidos de América. SigloXXI,Madrid, 1990.Pp.15.

[20] Willi, P.A.; Los Estados Unidos...op.cit.,pp.33-34.

[21] Willi, P.A.; Los Estados Unidos...op.cit.,pp.33-34.

[22] Willi, P.A.; Los Estados Unidos...op.cit.,pp.36-37.

[23] Willi, P.A.; Los Estados Unidos...op.cit.,pp.37.

[24] Willi, P.A.; Los Estados Unidos...op.cit.,pp.36.

[25] Willi, P.A.; Los Estados Unidos...op.cit.,pp.45.

[26] A.H.N., Estado, leg. 3885. Also in Armillas Vicente, J.; El Misisipì...op.cit.,pp.25 and ss.

[27] Sánchez Montero, R.; "La misiûn de John jay en Espaòa". Anuario de Estudios Americanos, n∫23. Santoyo; J.C.; Arthur Lee: historia de una embajada secreta. Caja de Ahorros Municipal de la Ciudad de Vitoria, Vitoria, 1977.

[28] Navarro Latorre, J.; Conspiraciûn espaòla?....op.cit.,p.9.

[29] Navarro Latorre, J.; Conspiraciûn espaòla?...op.cit.,p.16.

[30] Gomez del Campillo, M.; Relaciones diplomâticas entre Espaòa y los Estados Unidos. A.H.N., Estado, Cat·logo, vol.II. Pp.385-398. Armillas Vicente, J.; El Misisipì...op.cit.,pp.125-126.

[31] A.H.N., Estado, leg. 3885.

[32] A.H.N., Estado, loc.cit.

[33] [33] Armillas Vicente, J.; El Misisipì...op.cit.,pp.95, Montero de Pedro, J.; Espaòles..op.cit.,pp.58, he gives the amount of 15.000.

[34] Armillas Vicente, J.; El Misisipì...op.cit.,pp.96-98.

[35] Armillas Vicente, J.; El Misisipì...op.cit.,pp.96-98.

[36] Armillas Vicente, J.; El Misisipì...op.cit.,pp.96-98.

[37] Willi, P.A.; Los Estados Unidos...op.cit.,pp.26.

[38] Navarro Latorre, J.; Conspiraciûn espaòla?...op.cit.,pp.13.

[39] A.H.N., Estado, leg 3886.

[40] Armillas Vicente, J.; El Misisipì...op.cit.,pp.52.

[41] Navarro Latorre, J.; Conspiraciûn espaòla?...op.cit.,pp.20.

[42] Navarro Latorre, J.; Conspiraciûn espaòla?...op.cit.,pp.20.

[43] A.H.N., Estado, leg. 3886.

[44] A.H.N., Estado,loc.cit..

[45] Navarro Latorre, J.; Conspiraciûn espaòla?...op.cit.,pp22.

[46] Navarro Latorre, J.; Conspiraciûn espaòla?...op.cit.,pp21.

[47] A.H.N., leg. 3888, "The gazette of Kentucky" n. 28, 8, 8th of March 1788. Extract of the Kentucky's Convention Diary. Quoted in Navarro Latorre, J.;Consiraciûn espaòla?...op.cit.,pp.55.

[48] A.H.N., leg 3886. Copy of a letter written in Nashvillein the establishments in western North Carolina. Quoted in Navarro Latorre, J.; Conspiraciûn espaòla?...op.cit.,pp19. Armillas Vicente, J.; El Misisipì...op.cit.,pp.31.

[49] BEARD, M.; CHARLES, A.; Historia de la civilizaciûn de los Etados Unidos de América del Norte: desde sus orìgenes hasta el presente. Guillermo Kraft, Buenos Aires, 1946. Vol.I, pp.440 and ss.

[50] Armillas Vicente, J.; El Misisipì...op.cit.,pp.31-36 and ss., Navarro Latorre, J.; Conspiraciûn espaòla?...op.cit.,pp.23-24.

[51] Navarro Latorre, J.; Conspiraciûn espaòla?..op.cit.,pp.24 and ss.

[52] A.G.I., Cuba, leg. 2375. Quoted in Navarro Latorre, J.; Conspiraciûn espaòla?...pp.27-28.

[53] A.H.N., leg, 3888. Memoria del Brigadier Jayme Wilkinson. Citado en Navarro Latorre, J.; Conspiraciûn espaòla?...op.cit.,pp.30 and ss.

[54] A.H.N., loc.cit. Brigadier Jaames Wilkinson's Report. Quoted in Navarro Latorre, J.; Conspiraciûn espaòla?...op.cit.,pp.30 and ss. "List of Notables". Supported the Wilkinson Plan: Harry Innes, Sollicitor of Kentucky; Bejamin Sebastian, juriste; Jhon Brown, congressiste; Caleb Wallace, judge; John Fowler, man of influence. Supported the independence of Kentucky and friendship with Spain: Benjamin Logan, commandant of the militia; Issac Shelvy, man of influence; Colonel James Gerard. In favour of Independence: Minister Guillermo Wood; Colonel Henry Lee, Colonel Roberton Jonston, General Lawson (friend of Wilkinson)Ricardo Tyler, man of influence; Jorge Nicol·s Escudero, man of influence and friend of Wilkinson; Alejandro Scott Bullet, rich man. In favour of Great Britain: Thomas Marshall, surveyor, Richard Canderson, surveyor; Jorge Mutter, judge; Colonel Roberto Caldwell, Green Clay, man of influence; Samuel Taylor, man of influence; Humphry Marshall.

[55] A.H.N., leg. 3885. 15th of May 1875.

[56] Armillas Vicente, J.; El Misisipì...op.cit.,pp.94-96, Relaciones diplomâticas entre Espaòa y los Estados Unidos a finales de siglo XVIII. Universidad de Zaragoza, 1973. Pp.105 and ss. The British participation in these complots against Spain had as a main objective to weaken the Spanish position in the Mississippi and to increase the tensions between Spain and the United States.

[57] Navarro Latorre, J.; Conspiraciûn espaòla?...op.cit.pp.45 and ss. About the origins of the colonizing projects in the Mississippi A.H.N., Estado leg. 659. State Board on the 28th of June and 12th of August 1702. The matter had already been contemplated in this boards. The Spanish ambassador in Paris, Castell Dosrius, submitted the proposal to the board of Luis XIV and Felipe V about the joint exploration, settling, government and administration in the Mississippi, as a test and model to extend a joint system of government in the whole America and Spain. At the end of the project the two crowns would joint:France considered that only woth the conjuction of the two monarchies there was enough capacity ti retain America exclusively, expelling the British and the Dutch, and to keep connected all the Monarchy from Europe to Americaas if it were a continous territory. The british colonies would be closed up between the Atlantic and the Alleghanys mountains and disconnected from Great Britain. In this situation, they would have to turn economically and politically towrds te Hispanic Monarchy. The Board decided that colaboration with France was the only choice, but only in America and for the territories in the Mississippi, refusing the rest of the proposals of Luis XIV because they ment the union of the two Monarchies.

[58] Navarro Latorre, J.; Conspiraciûn espaòla?...op.cit.,pp.57 and ss.

[59] Navarro Latorre, J.; Conspiraciûn espaòla?...op.cit.,pp.47 and ss.

[60] A.H.N., Estado, leg. 3888. Quoted in Navarro Latorre, J.; Conspiraciûn espaòla?..op.cit.,pp.207-214.

[61] A.H.N., Estado, loc.cit. "The gazette of Kentucky", convenciûn diaries on 28th of March 1788. Quoted in Navarro Latorre, J.; Conspiraciûn espaòla?...op.cit.,pp.55.

[62] Connolly-Wilson interview, 8 and 20th of november. Navarro Latorre, J.; Conspiraciûn espaòla?...op.cit.,pp.65-66.

[63] Roberson, J.M.; "James Monroe and the tree-to-five clause of the Northwest Ordinance". Early America Review. Summer-Fall 2001.

[64] Navarro Latorre, J.; Conspiraciûn espaòla?...op.cit.,pp.60, 66-67.

[65] Navarro Latorre, J.; Conspiraciûn espaòla?...op.cit.,pp.73-74.

[66] On 17th of setember 1789. A.H.N., leg 3886. Quoted in Navarro Latorre, J.; Conspiraciûn espaòla?...op.cit.,pp.81.

[67] Armillas Vicente, J.; El Misisipì...op.cit.,pp.25-26

[68] Armillas Vicente, J.; El Misisipì...op.cit.,pp.55 and ss.

[69] Armillas Vicente, J.; El Misisipì...op.cit.,pp.63.

[70] Armillas Vicente, J.; Ecos de la Revoluciûn Francesa en los Estados Unidos. Universidad de Zaragoza, 1973. Pp.76.

[71] Navarro Latorre, J.; Conspiraciûn espaòla?...op.cit.,pp.83-84.

[72] Yela Utrilla, J.; Espaòa...op.cit.,vo.l.I,pp.477, Armillas Vicente, J.; El Misisipì...op.cit.,pp.76, Willi, P.A.; Los Estados Unidos...op.cit.,pp.53-55.

[73] Armillas Vicente, J.; El Misisipì...op.cit.,pp.170-172,Willi, P.A.; Los Estados Unidos...op.cit.,pp.55.

[74] Willi, P.A.; Los Estados Unidos...op.cit.,pp.55-56

[75] Yela Utrilla, J.; Espaòa...op.cit.,vol.I, pp. 477.Montero de Pedro, J.; Espaòles...op.cit.,pp.54-55.

[76] Montero de Pedro, J.; Espaòles...op.cit.,pp.54-55.

 

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