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Autobiography of Andrew Dickson White

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two of my men to hurry down the mountain, and out to
the frigate, to bring in my leather trunk containing a
costume more worthy of the expected ceremony; and
hardly were we comfortably established under the roof of
the vice-president, when two sailors came in, bringing the
precious burden.

Now came a catastrophe. Turning the key, I noticed
that the brass fittings of the lock were covered with verdigris,
and, as the trunk opened, I shrank back in horror. It
was filled, apparently, with a mass of mossy white-and-
green mold from which cockroaches of enormous size
darted in all directions.

Hastily pulling down the cover, I called a council of
war; the main personages in it being my private secretary,
Professor Crane, since acting president of Cornell
University, and sundry of the more important men in the
expedition. To these I explained the situation. It seemed
bad enough to lose all means of presenting a suitable
appearance at the approaching festivity, but this was
nothing compared with the idea that I had requited the
hospitality of my host by spreading through his house this
hideous entomological collection.

But as I exposed this latter feature of the situation, I
noticed a smile coming over the faces of my Dominican
attendants, and presently one of them remarked that the
cockroaches I had brought would find plenty of companions;
that the house was doubtless already full of them.
This was a great relief to my conscience. The trunk was
removed, and presently the clothing, in which I was to
be arrayed for the evening, was brought in. It seemed in
a fearful condition, but, curiously enough, while boots,
shoes, and, above all, a package of white gloves carefully
reserved for grand ceremonies, had been nearly devoured,
the garments of various sorts had escaped fairly

The next thing in order being the preparation of my
apparel for use, the men proceeded first to deluge it with
carbolic acid; and then, after drying it on the balconies
in front of the vice-president's house, to mitigate the
invincible carbolic odor by copious drenchings of Florida
water. All day long they were thus at work making
ready for the evening ceremony. In due time it arrived;
and, finally, after a sumptuous entertainment, I
stood before the assembled consuls and other magnates.
Probably no one of them remembers a word of my
discourse; but doubtless every survivor will agree that no
speaker, before or since, ever made to him an appeal of
such pungency. I pervaded the whole atmosphere of the
place; indeed, the town itself seemed to me, as long as I
remained in it, to reek of that strange mixture of carbolic
acid and Florida water; and as soon as possible after
reaching the ship, the contents of the trunk were thrown
overboard, and life became less a burden.

Having been duly escorted to the Nantasket, and
received heartily by Commander McCook, I was assigned
his own cabin, but soon thought it expedient to get out of
it and sleep on deck. The fact was that the companions
of my cockroaches had possession of the ship, and, to all
appearance, their headquarters were in the captain's
room. I therefore ordered my bed on deck; and, though
it was February, passed two delightful nights in that
balmy atmosphere of the tropical seas while we skirted
the north side of the island until, at Port-au-Prince, I
rejoined the other commissioners, who had come in the
Tennessee along the southern coast.

At the Haitian capital our commission had interviews
with the president, his cabinet, and others, and afterward
we had time to look about us. Few things could be more
dispiriting. The city had been burned again and again, and
there had arisen a tangle of streets displaying every sort
of cheap absurdity in architecture. The effects of the
recent revolution--the latest in a long series of civic
convulsions, cruel and sterile--were evident on all sides. On
the slope above the city had stood the former residence of
the French governor: it had been a beautiful palace, and,
being so far from the sea, had, until the recent revolution,
escaped unharmed; but during that last effort a squad
of miscreants, howling the praises of liberty, having got
possession of a small armed vessel in the harbor and found
upon it a rifled cannon of long range, had exercised their
monkeyish passion for destruction by wantonly firing
upon this beautiful structure. It now lay in ruins. In its
main staircase an iron ring was pointed out to us, and we
were given the following chronicle.

During the recent revolution the fugitive President
Salnave had been captured, a leathern thong had been
rudely drawn through a gash in his hand, and, attached
by this to a cavalryman, he had been dragged up the hill
to the palace, through the crowd which had but recently
hurrahed for him, but which now jeered and pelted him.
Arriving upon the scene of his former glory, he was
attached by the thong to this iron ring and shot.

Opposite the palace was the ruin of a mausoleum, and
in the street were scattered fragments of marble
sarcophagi beautifully sculptured: these had contained the
bodies of former rulers, but the revolutionists of Haiti,
imitating those of 1793 in France, as apes imitate men,
had torn the corpses out of them and had then scattered
these, with the fragments of their monuments, through the

In the markets of the city we had ample experience
of the advantage arising from unlimited paper money.
Successive governments had kept themselves afloat by new
issues of currency, until its purchasing power was reduced
almost to nothing. Preposterous sums were demanded for
the simplest articles: hundreds of dollars for a basket of
fruit, and thousands of dollars for a straw hat.

With us as one of our secretaries was Frederick
Douglass, the gifted son of an eminent Virginian and a slave
woman,--one of the two or three most talented men of color I
have ever known. Up to this time he had cherished many
hopes that his race, if set free, would improve; but it was
evident that this experience in Santo Domingo discouraged
and depressed him. He said to one of us, ``If this is
the outcome of self-government by my race, Heaven help us!''

Another curious example bearing on the same subject
was furnished us in Jamaica, whither we went after leav-
ing Haiti. Our wish was to consult, on our way home, the
former president of the Haitian republic, Geffrard,--
who was then living in exile near Kingston. We found
him in a beautiful apartment, elegantly furnished; and in
every way he seemed superior to the officials whom we
had met at Port-au-Prince. He was a light mulatto,
intelligent, quiet, dignified, and able to state his views
without undue emphasis. His wife was very agreeable, and
his daughter, though clearly of a melancholic temperament,
one of the most beautiful young women I have ever
seen. The reason for her melancholy was evident to any
one who knew her father's history. He had gone through
many political storms before he had fled from Haiti, and
in one of these his enemies had fired through the windows
of his house and killed his other daughter.

He calmly discussed with us the condition of the island,
and evidently believed that the only way to save it from
utter barbarism was to put it under the control of some
civilized power.

Interesting as were his opinions, he and his family, as
we saw them in their daily life, were still more so. It
was a revelation to us all of what the colored race might
become in a land where it is under no social ban. For
generations he and his had been the equals of the best
people they had met in France and in Haiti; they had
been guests at the dinners of ministers and at the soires
of savants in the French capital; there was nothing about
them of that deprecatory sort which one sees so constantly
in men and women with African blood in their veins in
lands where their race has recently been held in servitude.

And here I may again cite the case of President Baez--
a man to whom it probably never occurred that he was not
the equal socially of the best men he met, and who in any
European country would be at once regarded as a man
of mark, and welcomed at any gathering of notables.

Among our excursions, while in Jamaica, was one to
Spanish Town, the residence of the British governor.
In the drawing-room of His Excellency's wife there was
shown us one rather curious detail. Not long before our
visit, the legislature had been abolished and the island
had been made a crown colony ruled by a royal governor
and council; therefore it was that, there being no further
use for it, the gorgeous chair of ``Mr. Speaker,'' a huge
construction apparently of carved oak, had been transferred
to her ladyship's drawing-room, and we were informed
that in this she received her guests.

From Kingston we came to Key West, and from that
point to Charleston, where, as our frigate was too large to
cross the bar, we were taken off, and thence reached
Washington by rail.

One detail regarding those latter days of our
commission is perhaps worthy of record as throwing light on a
seamy side of American life. From first to last we had
shown every possible civility to the representatives of the
press who had accompanied us on the frigate, constantly
taking them with us in Santo Domingo and elsewhere,
and giving them every facility for collecting information.
But from time to time things occurred which threw a new
and somewhat unpleasant light on the way misinformation
is liberally purveyed to the American public. One day
one of these gentlemen, the representative of a leading
New York daily, talking with me of the sort of news his
paper required, said, ``The managers of our paper don't
care for serious information, such as particulars regarding
the country we visit, its inhabitants, etc., etc.; what they
want, above all, is something of a personal nature, such as
a quarrel or squabble, and when one occurs they expect us
to make the most of it.''

I thought no more of this until I arrived at Port-au-
Prince, where I found that this gentleman had suddenly
taken the mail-steamer for New York on the plea of urgent
business. The real cause of his departure was soon
apparent. His letters to the paper he served now began
to come back to us, and it was found that he had exercised
his imagination vigorously. He had presented a
mass of sensational inventions, but his genius had been
especially exercised in trumping up quarrels which had
never taken place; his masterpiece being an account of a
bitter struggle between Senator Wade and myself. As
a matter of fact, there had never been between us the
slightest ill-feeling; the old senator had been like a father
to me from first to last.

The same sort of thing was done by sundry other press
prostitutes, both during our stay in the West Indies and
at Washington; but I am happy to say that several of the
correspondents were men who took their duties seriously,
and really rendered a service to the American public by
giving information worth having.

Our journey from Charleston to Washington had one
episode perhaps worthy of recording, as showing a peculiarity
of local feeling at that time. Through all the long
day we had little or nothing to eat, and looked forward
ravenously to the dinner on board the Potomac steamer.
But on reaching it and entering the dining-room, we found
that our secretary, Mr. Frederick Douglass, was absolutely
refused admittance. He, a man who had dined
with the foremost statesmen and scholars of our Northern
States and of Europe,--a man who by his dignity, ability,
and elegant manners was fit to honor any company,--was,
on account of his light tinge of African blood, not thought
fit to sit at meat with the motley crowd on a Potomac
steamer. This being the case, Dr. Howe and myself
declined to dine, and so reached Washington, about
midnight, almost starving, thus experiencing, at a low price,
the pangs and glories of martyrdom.

One discovery made by the commission on its return
ought to be mentioned here, for the truth of history. Mr.
Sumner, in his speeches before the Senate, had made a
strong point by contrasting the conduct of the United
States with that of Spain toward Santo Domingo. He
had insisted that the conduct of Spain had been far more
honorable than that of the United States; that Spain had
brought no pressure to bear upon the Dominican republic;
that when Santo Domingo had accepted Spanish rule,
some years before, it had done so of its own free will; and
that ``not a single Spanish vessel was then in its waters,
nor a single Spanish sailor upon its soil.'' On the other
hand, he insisted that the conduct of the United States had
been the very opposite of this; that it had brought pressure
to bear upon the little island republic; and that when
the decision was made in favor of our country, there were
American ships off the coast and American soldiers upon
the island. To prove this statement, he read from a speech
of the Spanish prime minister published in the official
paper of the Spanish government at Madrid. To our
great surprise, we found, on arriving at the island, that
this statement was not correct; that when the action in
favor of annexation to Spain took place, Spanish ships
were upon the coast and Spanish soldiers upon the
island; and that there had been far more appearance
of pressure at that time than afterward, when the little
republic sought admission to the American Union. One
of our first efforts, therefore, on returning, was to
find a copy of this official paper, for the purpose of
discovering how it was that the leader of the Spanish
ministry had uttered so grave an untruth. The Spanish
newspaper was missing from the library of Congress;
but at last Dr. Howe, the third commissioner, a life-
long and deeply attached friend of Mr. Sumner, found it
in the library of the senator. The passage which Mr.
Sumner had quoted was carefully marked; it was simply
to the effect that when the FIRST proceedings looking toward
annexation to Spain were initiated, there were no Spanish
ships in those waters, nor Spanish soldiers on shore. This
was, however, equally true of the United States; for when
proceedings were begun in Santo Domingo looking to
annexation, there was not an American ship off the coast, nor
an American soldier on the island.

But the painful thing in the matter was that, had Mr
Sumner read the sentence immediately following that
which he quoted, it would have shown simply and distinctly
that his contention was unfounded; that, at the time
when the annexation proceedings WERE formally initiated
and accomplished, there were Spanish ships off those
shores and Spanish soldiers on the island.

I recall vividly the deep regret expressed at the time by
Dr. Howe that his friend Senator Sumner had been so
bitter in his opposition to the administration that he had
quoted the first part of the Spanish minister's speech and
suppressed the second part. It was clear that if Mr. Sumner
had read the whole passage to the Senate it would have
shown that the conduct of the United States had not been
less magnanimous than that of Spain in the matter, and
that no argument whatever against the administration
could be founded upon its action in sending ships and
troops to the island.

In drawing up our report after our arrival, an amicable
difference of opinion showed itself. Senator Wade, being
a ``manifest-destiny'' man, wished it expressly to recommend
annexation; Dr. Howe, in his anxiety to raise the
status of the colored race, took a similar view; but I
pointed out to them the fact that Congress had asked, not
for a recommendation, but for facts; that to give them
advice under such circumstances was to expose ourselves to a
snub, and could bring no good to any cause which any of
us might wish to serve; and I stated that if the general
report contained recommendations, I must be allowed to
present one simply containing facts.

The result was that we united in the document presented,
which is a simple statement of facts, and which, as
I believe, remains to this day the best general account of
the resources of Santo Domingo.

The result of our report was what I had expected. The
Spanish part of that island is of great value from an
agricultural and probably from a mining point of view. Its
valleys being swept by the trade-winds, its mountain slopes
offer to a white population summer retreats like those
afforded by similar situations to the British occupants of
India. In winter it might also serve as a valuable
sanatorium. I remember well the answer made to me by a man
from Maine, who had brought his family to the neighborhood
of Samana Bay in order to escape the rigors of the
New England winter. On my asking him about the diseases
prevalent in his neighborhood, he said that his entire
household had gone through a light acclimating fever, but
he added: ``We have all got through it without harm; and
on looking the whole matter over, I am persuaded that, if
you were to divide the people of any New England State
into two halves, leaving one half at home and sending the
other half here, there would in ten years be fewer deaths in
the half sent here, from all the diseases of this country,
than in the half left in New England, from consumption

A special element in the question of annexation was the
value of the harbor of Samana in controlling one of the
great passages from Europe to the Isthmus. It is large
enough to hold any fleet, is protected by a mountain-range
from the northern winds, is easily fortified, and is the
natural outlet of the largest and most fertile valley in the
islands. More than this, if the experiment of annexing an
outlying possession was to be tried, that was, perhaps, the
best of opportunities, since the resident population to be
assimilated was exceedingly small.

But the people of the United States, greatly as they
honored General Grant, and much as they respected his
recommendations, could not take his view. They evidently
felt that, with the new duties imposed upon them
by the vast number of men recently set free and admitted
to suffrage in the South, they had quite enough to do
without assuming the responsibility of governing and
developing this new region peopled by blacks and mulattos;
and as a result of this very natural feeling the whole
proposal was dropped, and will doubtless remain in abeyance
until the experiments in dealing with Porto Rico
and the Philippines shall have shown the people of the
United States whether there is any place for such
dependencies under our system.



My next experience was of a quasi-diplomatic sort, in
connection with the Paris Exposition of 1878, and
it needs some preface.

During the Centennial Exposition of 1876 at Philadelphia,
I had been appointed upon the educational jury, and,
as the main part of the work came during the university
long vacation, had devoted myself to it, and had thus been
brought into relations with some very interesting men.

Of these may be named, at the outset, the Emperor Dom
Pedro of Brazil. I first saw him in a somewhat curious
way. He had landed at New York in the morning, and
early in the afternoon he appeared with the Empress and
their gentlemen and ladies in waiting at Booth's Theater.
The attraction was Shakspere's ``Henry V,'' and no sooner
was he seated in his box than he had his Shakspere open
before him. Being in an orchestra stall, I naturally
observed him from time to time, and at one passage light
was thrown upon his idea of his duties as a monarch. The
play was given finely, by the best American company of
recent years, and he was deeply absorbed in it. But
presently there came the words of King Henry--the noted

``And what have kings, that privates have not too,
Save ceremony, save general ceremony?
And what art thou, thou idol ceremony?''

Whereupon the Emperor and Empress, evidently moved
by the same impression, turned their heads from the stage,
looked significantly at each other, and his majesty very
earnestly nodded to his wife several times, as if
thoroughly assenting.

The feeling thus betrayed was undoubtedly sincere. His
real love was for science, literature, and art; but above
all for science. Some years before, at the founding of
Cornell University, Agassiz had shown me private letters
from him revealing his knowledge of natural history, and
the same thirst for knowledge which he showed then was
evident now. From dawn till dusk he was hard at work,
visiting places of interest and asking questions which,
as various eminent authorities both in the United States
and France have since assured me, showed that he kept
himself well abreast of the most recent scientific

On the following morning he invited me to call upon
him, and on my doing so, he saluted me with a multitude
of questions regarding our schools, colleges, and universities,
which I answered as best I could, though many of
them really merited more time than could be given during
a morning interview. His manner was both impressive
and winning. He had clearly thought much on educational
problems, and no man engaged in educational work could
fail to be stimulated by his questions and comments. In
his manner there was nothing domineering or assuming.
I saw him at various times afterward, and remember
especially his kindly and perfectly democratic manner at
a supper given by the late Mr. Drexel of Philadelphia,
when he came among us, moving from group to group,
recognizing here one old friend and there another, and
discussing with each some matter of value.

Republican as I am, it is clear to me that his
constitutional sovereignty was a government far more free,
liberal, and, indeed, republican, than the rule of the
demagogue despots who afterward drove him from his throne
ever has been or ever will be.

Another very interesting person was a Spanish officer,
Don Juan Marin, who has since held high commands both
in his own country and in the West Indies. We were upon
the same jury, and I came to admire him much. One day,
as we sat in our committee-room discussing various subjects
brought before us, there appeared in the street leading
to the main entrance of the grounds a large body
of soldiers with loud drumming and fifing. On his asking
what troops these were, I answered that they were
the most noted of our American militia regiments--the
New York Seventh; and on his expressing a wish to see
them, we both walked out for that purpose. Presently
the gates were thrown open, and in marched the regiment,
trim and brisk, bearing aloft the flag of the United
States and the standard of the State of New York.

At the moment when the standard and flag were abreast
of us, Colonel Marin, who was in civil dress, drew himself
up, removed his hat, and bowed low with simple dignity.
The great crowd, including myself, were impressed by this
action. It had never occurred to any one of the rest of us
to show such a tribute to the flag under which so many
good and true men had fought and died for us; and, as one
of the crowd very justly remarked afterward, ``The Spaniard
cheapened the whole lot of us.'' With a single exception,
it was the finest exhibition of manners I have ever

[11] See the chapter on my attachship in Russia.

Still another delegate was Professor Levasseur, of the
College of France and the French Institute. His quickness
in ascertaining what was of value in a politico-economical
view, and his discussions of geographical matters,
interested and instructed all who had to do with him.

With him was Rn Millet, an example of the most
attractive qualities of a serious Frenchman--qualities
which have since been recognized in his appointments as
minister and ambassador to Sweden and to Tunis. Both
these gentlemen afterward made me visits at Cornell
which I greatly enjoyed.

At this time, too, I made a friendship which became
precious to me--that of Gardner Hubbard, one of the
best, truest, and most capable men, in whatever he undertook,
that I have ever seen. The matter which interested
him then has since interested the world. His son-in-law
Mr. Alexander Graham Bell, was exhibiting what appeared
to be a toy,--a toy which on one occasion he
showed to Dom Pedro and to others of us, and which
enabled us to hear in one of the buildings of the exposition a
violin played in another building. It was regarded as
an interesting plaything, and nothing more. A controlling
right in its use might have been bought for a very moderate
sum--yet it was the beginning of the telephone!

In connection with these and other interesting men, I
had devoted myself to the educational exhibits of the
exposition; and the result was that, during the following
year, I was appointed by the Governor of the State of
New York one of two honorary commissioners to the Paris
Exposition; the other being Mr. Morton, afterward Minister
to France, Vice-President of the United States, and
Governor of the State of New York.

I was not inclined, at first, to take my appointment very
seriously, but went to Paris simply to visit the exposition,
hoping that my honorary function would give me good
opportunities. But on arriving I found the commissioner-
general of the United States, Governor McCormick, hard
pressed by his duties, and looking about for help. A large
number of regular commissioners had been appointed, but
very few of them were of the slightest use. Hardly one
of them could speak French, and very few of them really
took any interest in the duties assigned them. The main
exception, a very noble one, was my old friend President
Barnard of Columbia College, and he had not yet arrived.
Under these circumstances, I yielded to the earnest
request of Governor McCormick and threw myself heartily
into the work of making our part of the exposition a

The American representation at the Vienna Exposition
a few years before had resulted in a scandal which had
resounded through Europe, and this scandal had arisen
from the fact that a subordinate, who had gained the
confidence of our excellent commissioner-general at that post,
had been charged, and to all appearance justly, with
receiving money for assigning privileges to bar-keepers
and caterers. The result was that the commissioner-general
was cruelly wounded, and that finally he and his
associates were ignominiously removed, and the American
minister to Austria put in his place until a new commission
could be formed. Of course every newspaper in Europe
hostile to republican ideas, and they were very many,
made the most of this catastrophe. One of them in Vienna
was especially virulent; it called attention to the model
of an American school-house in the exposition, and said
that ``it should be carefully observed as part of the
machinery which trains up such mercenary wretches as have
recently disgraced humanity at the exposition.''

To avoid scandals, to negotiate with the French
commissioners on one side, and the crowd of exhibitors on
the other, and especially to see that in all particulars the
representatives of American industry were fully recognized,
was a matter of much difficulty; but happily all
turned out well.

Among the duties of my position was membership of the
upper jury--that which, in behalf of the French Republic,
awarded the highest prizes. Each day, at about nine in
the morning, we met, and a remarkable body it was. At
my right sat Meissonier, then the most eminent of French
painters, and beyond him Quintana, the Spanish poet. Of
the former of these two I possess a curious memento. He
was very assiduous in attendance at our sessions, and the
moment he took his seat he always began drawing, his
materials being the block of letter-paper and the pencils,
pens, and ink lying before him. No matter what was
under discussion, he kept on with his drawing. While
he listened, and even while he talked, his pencil or pen
continued moving over the paper. He seemed to bring
every morning a mass of new impressions caught during
his walk to the exposition, which he made haste to trans-
fer to paper. Sometimes he used a pencil, sometimes, a
quill pen, and not infrequently he would plunge the
feather end of the quill into his inkstand and rapidly put
into his work broader and blacker strokes. As soon as
he had finished a drawing he generally tore it into bits
and threw them upon the floor, but occasionally he would
fold the sketches carefully and put them into his pocket.
This being the case, no one dared ask him for one of them.

But one morning his paper gave out, and for lack of it
he took up a boxwood paper-knife lying near and began
work on it. First he decorated the handle in a sort of
rococo way, and then dashed off on the blade, with his pen,
a very spirited head--a bourgeois physiognomy somewhat
in Gavarni's manner. But as he could not tear the
paper-knife into bits, and did not care to take it away, he
left it upon the table. This was my chance. Immediately
after the session I asked the director-general to allow me
to carry it off as a souvenir; he assented heartily, and so
I possess a picture which I saw begun, continued, and
ended by one of the greatest of French painters.

At my left was Tresca, director of the French National
Conservatory of Arts and Trades; and next him, the
sphinx of the committee--the most silent man I ever saw
the rector of the Portuguese University of Coimbra. During
the three months of our session no one of us ever
heard him utter a word. Opposite was Jules Simon, eminent
as an orator, philosopher, scholar, and man of letters;
an academician who had held positions in various cabinets,
and had even been prime minister of the republic.
On one side of him was Tullo Massarani, a senator of the
Italian kingdom, eminent as a writer on the philosophy of
art; on the other, Boussingault, one of the foremost chemists
of the century; and near him, Wischniegradsky, director
of the Imperial Technical Institute at Moscow, whom I
afterward came to know as minister of finance at St.
Petersburg. Each afternoon we devoted to examining the
greater exhibits which were to come before us in competition
for the grands prix on the following morning.

At one of our sessions a curious difficulty arose. The
committee on the award of these foremost prizes for
advanced work in electricity brought in their report, and, to
my amazement, made no award to my compatriot Edison,
who was then at the height of his reputation. Presently
Tresca, who read the report, and who really lamented the
omission, whispered to me the reason of it. Through the
negligence of persons representing Edison, no proper
exhibition of his inventions had been made to the committee.
They had learned that his agent was employed in showing
the phonograph in a distant hall on the boulevards to
an audience who paid an admission fee; but, although they
had tried two or three times to have his apparatus shown
them, they had been unsuccessful, until at last, from a
feeling of what was due their own self-respect, they passed
the matter over entirely. Of course my duty was to do
what was possible in rectifying this omission, and in as
good French as I could muster I made a speech in Edison's
behalf, describing his career, outlining his work,
and saying that I should really be ashamed to return to
America without some recognition of him and of his
inventions. This was listened to most courteously, but my
success was insured by a remark of a less serious character,
which was that if Edison had not yet made a sufficient
number of inventions to entitle him to a grand prize,
he would certainly, at the rate he was going on, have done
so before the close of the exposition. At this there was a
laugh, and my amendment was unanimously carried.

Many features in my work interested me, but one had
a melancholy tinge. One afternoon, having been summoned
to pass upon certain competing works in sculpture,
we finally stood before the great bronze entrance-
doors of the Cathedral of Strasburg, which, having been
designed before the Franco-Prussian War, had but just
been finished. They were very beautiful; but I could see
that my French associates felt deeply the changed situation
of affairs which this exhibit brought to their minds.

In order to promote the social relations which go for
so much at such times, I had taken the large apartment
temporarily relinquished by our American minister,
Governor Noyes of Ohio, in the Avenue Josephine; and there,
at my own table, brought together from time to time a
considerable number of noted men from various parts of
Europe. Perhaps the most amusing occurrence during
the series of dinners I then gave was the meeting between
Story, the American sculptor at Rome, and Judge Brady
of New York. For years each had been taken for the other,
in various parts of the world, but they had never met.
In fact, so common was it for people to mistake one for
the other that both had, as a rule, ceased to explain the
mistake. I was myself present with Story on one occasion
when a gentleman came up to him, saluted him as Judge
Brady, and asked him about their friends in New York:
Story took no trouble to undeceive his interlocutor, but
remarked that, so far as he knew, they were all well, and
ended the interview with commonplaces.

These two Dromios evidently enjoyed meeting, and
nothing could be more amusing than their accounts of
various instances in which each had been mistaken for the
other. Each had a rich vein of humor, and both presented
the details of these occurrences with especial zest.

Another American, of foreign birth, was not quite so
charming. He was a man of value in his profession; but
his desire for promotion outran his discretion. Having
served as juror at the Vienna Exposition, he had now
been appointed to a similar place in Paris; and after one
of my dinners he came up to a group in which there were
two or three members of the French cabinet, and said:
``Mr. Vite, I vish you vould joost dell dese zhentlemen vat
I am doing vor Vrance. I vas on de dasting gommittee
for vines und peers at Vien, and it 'most killed me; and
now I am here doing de same duty, and my stomach has
nearly gone pack on me. Tell dese zhentlemen dat de
French Government zurely ought to gonfer ubon me de
Legion of Honor.'' This was spoken with the utmost
seriousness, and was embarrassing, since, of all subjects,
that which a French minister least wishes to discuss
publicly is the conferring of the red ribbon.

Embarrassing also was the jubilation of some of our
American exhibitors at our celebration of the Fourth of
July in the Bois de Boulogne. Doubtless they were
excellent citizens, but never was there a better
exemplification of Dr. Arnold's saying that ``a traveller is a
self-constituted outlaw.'' A generous buffet had been
provided, after the French fashion, with a sufficiency of
viands and whatever wine was needed. To my amazement,
these men, who at home were most of them, probably,
steady-going ``temperance men,'' were so overcome with
the idea that champagne was to be served ad libitum, that
the whole thing came near degenerating into an orgy. A
European of the same rank, accustomed to drinking wine
moderately with his dinner, would have simply taken a
glass or two and thought no more of it; but these gentlemen
seemed to see in it the occasion of their lives. Bottles
were seized and emptied, glass after glass, down the
throats of my impulsive fellow-citizens: in many cases
a bottle and more to a man. Then came the worst of it.
It had been arranged that speeches should be made under
a neighboring tent by leading members of the French
cabinet who had accepted invitations to address us. But
when they proceeded to do this difficulties arose. A number
of our compatriots, unduly exhilarated, and understanding
little that was said, first applauded on general
principles, but at the wrong places, and finally broke out
into apostrophes such as ``Speak English, old boy!''
``Talk Yankee fashion!'' ``Remember the glorious
Fourth!'' ``Give it to the British!'' ``Make the eagle
scream!'' and the like. The result was that we were
obliged to make most earnest appeals to these gentlemen,
begging them not to disgrace our country; and, finally, the
proceedings were cut short.

Nor was this the end. As I came down the Champs
lyses afterward, I met several groups of these
patriots, who showed by their walk and conversation that
they were decidedly the worse for their celebration of the
day; and the whole thing led me to reflect seriously on the
drink problem, and to ask whether our American solution
of it is the best. I have been present at many large
festive assemblages, in various parts of Europe, where wine
was offered freely as a matter of course; but never have
I seen anything to approach this performance of my
countrymen. I have been one of four thousand people at
the Htel de Ville in Paris on the occasion of a great
ball, at other entertainments almost as large in other
Continental countries, and at dinner parties innumerable
in every European country; but never, save in one
instance, were the festivities disturbed by any man on
account of drink.

The most eminent of American temperance advocates
during my young manhood, Mr. Delavan, insisted that he
found Italy, where all people, men, women, and children,
drink wine with their meals, if they can get it, the most
temperate country he had ever seen; and, having made
more than twelve different sojourns in Italy, I can confirm
that opinion.

So, too, again and again, when traveling in the old days
on the top of a diligence through village after village in
France, where the people were commemorating the patron
saint of their district, I have passed through crowds of
men, women, and children seated by the roadside drinking
wine, cider, and beer, and, so far as one could see, there
was no drunkenness; certainly none of the squalid, brutal,
swinish sort. It may indeed be said that, in spite of light
stimulants, drunkenness has of late years increased in
France, especially among artisans and day laborers. If
this be so, it comes to strengthen my view. For the main
reason will doubtless be found in the increased prices of
light wines, due to vine diseases and the like, which have
driven the poorer classes to seek far more noxious beverages.

So, too, in Germany. Like every resident in that
country, I have seen great crowds drinking much beer,
and, though I greatly dislike that sort of guzzling, I never
saw anything of the beastly, crazy, drunken exhibitions
which are so common on Independence Day and county-
fair day in many American towns where total abstinence is
loudly preached and ostensibly practised. Least of all do
I admire the beer-swilling propensities of the German
students, and still I must confess that I have never seen
anything so wild, wicked, outrageous, and destructive to soul
and body as the drinking of distilled liquors at bars
which, in my student days, I saw among American students.
But I make haste to say that within the last twenty
or thirty years American students have improved immensely
in this respect. Athletics and greater interest in
study, caused by the substitution of the students' own
aims and tastes for the old cast-iron curriculum, are
doubtless the main reasons for this improvement.[12]

[12] Further reasons for this improvement I have endeavored to
give more in detail elsewhere.

Yet, in spite of this redeeming thing, the fact remains
that one of the greatest curses of American life is the
dram-drinking of distilled liquors at bars; and one key of
the whole misery is the American habit of ``treating,''--a
habit unknown in other countries. For example, in America,
if Tom, Dick, and Harry happen to meet at a hotel,
or in the street, to discuss politics or business, Tom
invites Dick and Harry to drink with him, which, in
accordance with the code existing among large classes of
our fellow-citizens, Dick and Harry feel bound to do.
After a little more talk Dick invites Harry and Tom to
drink; they feel obliged to accept; and finally Harry
invites Tom and Dick, with like result; so that these three
men have poured down their throats several glasses of
burning stimulants, perhaps in the morning, perhaps just
before the midday meal, or at some other especially
unsuitable time, with results more or less injurious to each
of them, physically and morally.

The European, more sensible, takes with his dinner,
as a rule, a glass or two of wine or beer, and is little, if
at all, the worse for it. If he ever takes any distilled
liquor, he sips a very small glass of it after his dinner,
to aid digestion.

It is my earnest conviction, based upon wide observation
in my own country as well as in many others during
about half a century, that the American theory and practice
as regards the drink question are generally more
pernicious than those of any other civilized nation. I
am not now speaking of TOTAL ABSTINENCE--of that, more
presently. But the best TEMPERANCE workers among us
that I know are the men who brew light, pure beer, and
the vine-growers in California who raise and sell at a very
low price wines pleasant and salutary, if any wines can be so.

As to those who have no self-restraint, beer and wine,
like many other things, promote the ``survival of the
fittest,'' and are, like many other things, ``fool-killers,''
aiding to free the next generation from men of vicious
propensities and weak will.

I repeat it, the curse of American social life, among a
very considerable class of our people, is ``perpendicular
drinking''--that is, the pouring down of glass after glass
of distilled spirits, mostly adulterated, at all sorts of
inopportune times, and largely under the system of ``treating.''

The best cure for this, in my judgment, would be for
States to authorize and local authorities to adopt the
``Swedish system,'' which I found doing excellent service
at Gothenburg in Sweden a few years since, and
which I am sorry to see the fanatics there have recently
wrecked. Under this plan the various towns allowed a
company to open a certain number of clean, tidy drinking-
places; obliged them to purchase pure liquors; forbade
them, under penalties, to sell to any man who had already
taken too much; made it also obligatory to sell something
to eat at the same time with something to drink; and, best
of all, restricted the profits of these establishments to a
moderate percentage,--seven or eight per cent., if I re-
member rightly,--all the surplus receipts going to public
purposes, and especially to local charities. The main point
was that the men appointed to dispense the drinks had no
motive to sell adulterated drinks, or any more liquor than
was consistent with the sobriety of the customer.

I may add that, in my opinion, the worst enemies of real
temperance in America, as in other countries, have been
the thoughtless screamers against intemperance, who have
driven vast numbers of their fellow-citizens to drink in
secret or at bars. Of course I shall have the honor of
being railed at and denounced by every fanatic who reads
these lines, but from my heart I believe them true.

I remember that some of these people bitterly attacked
Governor Stanford of California for the endowment of
Stanford University, in part, from the rent of his vineyards.
People who had not a word to say against one
theological seminary for accepting the Daniel Drew
endowment, or against another for accepting the Jay Gould
endowment, were horrified that the Stanford University
should receive revenue from a vineyard. The vineyards
of California, if their product were legally protected from
adulteration, could be made one of the most potent influences
against drunkenness that our country has seen. The
California wines are practically the only pure wines
accessible to Americans. They are so plentiful that there is
no motive to adulterate them, and their use among those
of us who are so unwise as to drink anything except water
ought to be effectively advocated as supplanting the
drinking of beer poisoned with strychnine, whisky poisoned
with fusel-oil, and ``French claret'' poisoned with
salicylic acid and aniline.

The true way to supplant the ``saloon'' and the barroom,
as regards working-men who obey their social instincts
by seeking something in the nature of a club, and
therefore resorting to places where stimulants are sold,
is to take the course so ably advocated by Bishop Potter:
namely, to furnish places of refreshment and amusement
which shall be free from all tendency to beastliness, and
which, with cheerful open fireplaces, games of various
sorts, good coffee and tea, and, if necessary, light beer
and wine, shall be more attractive than the ``saloons''
and ``dives'' which are doing our country such vast harm.

My advice to all men is to drink nothing but water.
That is certainly the wisest way for nine men out of ten
--and probably for all ten. Indeed, one reason why
the great body of our people accomplish so much more in
a given time than those of any other country, and why the
average American working-man ``catches on'' and ``gits
thar'' more certainly and quickly than a man of the same
sort in any other country (and careful comparison between
various other countries and our own has shown that
this is the case), is that a much larger proportion of our
people do not stupefy themselves with stimulants.

In what I have said above I have had in view the
problem as it really stands: namely, the existence of a very
large number of people who WILL have stimulants of
some kind. In such cases common sense would seem to
dictate that, in the case of those who persist in using
distilled liquors, something ought to be done to substitute
those which are pure for those which are absolutely
poisonous and maddening; and, in the case of those who
merely seek a mild stimulant, to substitute for distilled
liquors light fermented beverages; and, in the case of
those who seek merely recreation after toil, to substitute
for beverages which contain alcohol, light beverages like
coffee, tea, and chocolate.

This is a long digression, but liberavi animam meam,
and now I return to my main subject.

The American commissioners were treated with great
kindness by the French authorities. There were exceedingly
interesting receptions by various ministers, and at
these one met the men best worth knowing in France:
the men famous in science, literature, and art, who redeem
France from the disgrace heaped upon her by the wretched
creatures who most noisily represent her through sensational

Of the men who impressed me most was Henri Martin,
the eminent historian. He discussed with me the history
of France in a way which aroused many new trains of
thought. Jules Simon, eminent both as a scholar and a
statesman, did much for me. On one occasion he took
me about Paris, showing me places of special interest
connected with the more striking scenes of the Revolutionary
period; on another, he went with me to the distribution of
prizes at the French Academy--a most striking scene;
and on still another he piloted me through his beautiful
library, pointing out various volumes in which were
embedded bullets which the communards had fired through
his windows from the roof of the Madeleine just opposite.

Another interesting experience was a breakfast with the
eminent chemist Sainte-Claire Deville, at which I met
Pasteur, who afterward took me through his laboratories,
where he was then making some of his most important
experiments. In one part of his domain there were cages
containing dogs, and on my asking about them he said
that he was beginning a course of experiments bearing
on the causes and cure of hydrophobia. Nothing could be
more simple and modest than this announcement of one
of the most fruitful investigations ever made.

Visits to various institutions of learning interested me
much, among these a second visit to the Agricultural
College at Grignon and the wonderful Conservatoire des Arts
et Mtiers, which gave me new ideas for the similar
departments at Cornell, and a morning at the cole Normale,
where I saw altogether the best teaching of a Latin classic
that I have ever known. As I heard Professor Desjardins
discussing with his class one of Cicero's letters in the
light of modern monuments in the Louvre and of recent
archaeological discoveries, I longed to be a boy again.

Among the statesmen whom I met at that time in France,
a strong impression was made upon me by one who had
played a leading part in the early days of Napoleon III,
but who was at this time living in retirement, M. Drouyn
de Lhuys. He had won distinction as minister of foreign
affairs, but, having retired from politics, had given
himself up in his old age to various good enterprises,
among these, to the great Reform School at Mettray.
This he urged me to visit, and, although it was at a
considerable distance from Paris, I took his advice, and was
much interested in it. The school seemed to me well
deserving thorough study by all especially interested in the
problem of crime in our own country.

There is in France a system under which, when any
young man is evidently going all wrong,--squandering his
patrimony and bringing his family into disgrace,--a family
council can be called, with power to place the wayward
youth under restraint; and here, in one part of the
Mettray establishment, were rooms in which such youths were
detained in accordance with the requests of family councils.
It appeared that some had derived benefit from these
detentions, for there were shown me one or two letters
from them: one, indeed, written by a young man on the
bottom of a drawer, and intended for the eye of his successor
in the apartment, which was the most contrite yet
manly appeal I have ever read.

Another man of great eminence whom I met in those
days was Thiers. I was taken by an old admirer of
his to his famous house in the Place St. Georges, and
there found him, in the midst of his devotees, receiving

He said but little, and that little was commonplace; but
I was not especially disappointed: my opinion of him was
made up long before, and time has but confirmed it. The
more I have considered his doings as minister or
parliamentarian, and the more I have read his works, whether
his political pamphlet known as the ``History of the
French Revolution,'' which did so much to arouse sterile
civil struggles, or his ``History of the Consulate and of the
Empire,'' which did so much to revive the Napoleonic
legend, or his speeches under the constitutional monarchy
of Louis Philippe, under the Republic, and under the Second
Empire, which did so much to promote confusion and
anarchy, the less I admire him. He seems to me eminently
an architect of ruin.

It is true that when France was wallowing in the misery
into which he and men like him had done so much to
plunge her, he exerted himself wonderfully to accomplish
her rescue; but when the history of that country during
the last century shall be fairly written, his career, brilliant
as it once appeared, will be admired by no thinking patriot.

I came to have far more respect for another statesman
whom I then met--Duruy, the eminent historian of
France and of Rome, who had labored so earnestly under
the Second Empire, both as a historian and a minister of
state, to develop a basis for rational liberty.

Seated next me at dinner, he made a remark which
threw much light on one of the most serious faults of the
French Republic. Said he, ``Monsieur, I was minister of
public instruction under the Empire for seven years; since
my leaving that post six years have elapsed, and in that
time I have had seven successors.''

On another occasion he discoursed with me about the
special difficulties of France; and as I mentioned to him
that I remembered his controversy with Cardinal de
Bonnechose, in which the latter tried to drive him out of
office because he did not fetter scientific teaching in the
University of Paris, he spoke quite freely with me. Although
not at all a radical, and evidently willing to act
in concert with the church as far as possible, he gave
me to understand that the demands made by ecclesiastics
upon every French ministry were absolutely unendurable;
that France never could yield to these demands; and that,
sooner or later, a great break must come between the
church and modern society. His prophecy now seems
nearing fulfilment.

Among the various meetings which were held in
connection with the exposition was a convention of literary
men for the purpose of securing better international
arrangements regarding copyright. Having been elected
a member of this, I had the satisfaction of hearing most
interesting speeches from Victor Hugo, Tourgueneff, and
Edmond About. The latter made the best speech of all,
and by his exquisite wit and pleasing humor fully showed
his right to the name which his enemies had given him--
``the Voltaire of the nineteenth century.''

The proceedings of this convention closed with a banquet
over which Victor Hugo presided; and of all the trying
things in my life, perhaps the most so was the speech
which I then attempted in French, with Victor Hugo looking
at me.

There were also various educational congresses at the
Sorbonne, in which the discussions interested me much;
but sundry receptions at the French Academy were far
more attractive. Of all the exquisite literary performances
I have ever known, the speeches made on those occasions
by M. Charles Blanc, M. Gaston Boissier, and the
members who received them were the most entertaining.
To see these witty Frenchmen attacking each other in the
most pointed way, yet still observing all the forms of
politeness, and even covering their adversaries with
compliments, gives one new conceptions of human ingenuity.
But whether it is calculated to increase respect for the
main actors is another question.

The formal closing of the exposition was a brilliant
pageant. Various inventors and exhibitors received gifts
and decorations from the hand of the President of the
Republic, and, among them, Dr. Barnard, Story, and myself
were given officers' crosses of the Legion of Honor
which none of us has ever thought of wearing; but,
alas! my Swiss-American friend who had pleaded so
pathetically his heroic services in ``Dasting de vines und
peers'' for France did not receive even the chevalier's
ribbon, and the expression of his disappointment was loud
and long.

Nor was he the only disappointed visitor. It was my
fortune one day at the American legation to observe one
difficulty which at the western capitals of Europe has
become very trying, and which may be mentioned to show
that an American representative has sometimes to meet.
As I was sitting with our minister, Governor Noyes of
Ohio, there was shown into the room a lady, very stately,
and dressed in the height of fashion. It was soon evident
that she was on the war-path. She said, ``Mr.
Minister, I have come to ask you why it is that I do not
receive any invitations to balls and receptions given by
the cabinet ministers?'' Governor Noyes answered very
politely, ``Mrs. ----, we have placed your name on the list
of those whom we would especially like to have invited,
and have every hope that it will receive attention.'' She
answered, ``Why is it that you can do so much less than
your predecessor did at the last exposition? THEN I
received a large number of invitations; NOW I receive none.''
The minister answered, ``I am very sorry indeed, madam;
but there are perhaps twenty or thirty thousand Americans
in Paris; the number of them invited on each occasion
cannot exceed fifty or sixty; and the French authorities
are just now giving preference to those who have come
from the United States to take some special part in the
exposition as commissioners or exhibitors.'' At this the
lady was very indignant. She rose and said, ``I will give
you no more trouble, Mr. Minister; but I am going back
to America, and shall tell Senator Conkling, who gave
me my letter of introduction to you, that either he has
very little influence with you, or you have very little
influence with the French Government. Good morning!''
And she flounced out of the room.

This is simply an indication of what is perhaps the
most vexatious plague which afflicts American representatives
in the leading European capitals,--a multitude of
people, more or less worthy, pressing to be presented at
court or to be invited to official functions. The whole
matter has a ridiculous look, and has been used by sundry
demagogues as a text upon which to orate against
the diplomatic service and to arouse popular prejudice
against it. But I think that a patriotic American may
well take the ground that while there is so much snobbery
shown by a certain sort of Americans abroad, it is
not an unwise thing to have in each capital a man who
in the intervals of his more important duties, can keep this
struggling mass of folly from becoming a scandal and a
byword throughout Europe. No one can know, until he
has seen the inner workings of our diplomatic service,
how much duty of this kind is quietly done by our
representatives, and how many things are thus avoided which
would tend to bring scorn upon our country and upon
republican institutions.



In the spring of 1879 I was a third time brought into
the diplomatic service, and in a way which surprised me.
The President of the United States at that period was Mr.
Hayes of Ohio. I had met him once at Cornell University,
and had an interesting conversation with him, but never
any other communication, directly or indirectly. Great,
then, was my astonishment when, upon the death of Bayard
Taylor just at the beginning of his career as minister
to Germany, there came to me an offer of the post thus
made vacant.

My first duty after accepting it was to visit Washington
and receive instructions. Calling upon the Secretary
of State, Mr. Evarts, and finding his rooms filled with
people, I said: ``Mr. Secretary, you are evidently very
busy; I can come at any other time you may name.''
Thereupon he answered: ``Come in, come in; there are
just two rules at the State Department: one is that no
business is ever done out of office hours; and the other is, that
no business is ever done IN office hours.'' It was soon
evident that this was a phrase to put me at ease, rather
than an exact statement of fact; and, after my conference
with him, several days were given to familiarizing myself
with the correspondence of my immediate predecessors,
and with the views of the department on questions then
pending between the two countries.

Dining at the White House next day, I heard Mr. Evarts
withstand the President on a question which has always
interested me--the admission of cabinet ministers to
take part in the debates of Congress. Mr. Hayes
presented the case in favor of their admission cogently; but
the Secretary of State overmatched his chief. This
greatly pleased me; for I had been long convinced that
next to the power given the Supreme Court, the best
thing in the Constitution of the United States is that
complete separation of the executive from the legislative
power which prevents every Congressional session becoming
a perpetual gladiatorial combat or, say, rather,
a permanent game of foot-ball. Again and again I have
heard European statesmen lament that their constitution-
makers had adopted, in this respect, the British rather
than the American system. What it is in France, with
cabals organized to oust every new minister as soon as he
is appointed, and to provide for a ``new deal'' from the
first instant of an old one, with an average of one or two
changes of ministry every year as a result, we all know;
and, with the exception of the German parliament, Continental
legislatures generally are just about as bad; indeed,
in some respects the Italian parliament is worse.
The British system would have certainly excluded such
admirable Secretaries of State as Thomas Jefferson and
Hamilton Fish; possibly such as John Quincy Adams,
Seward, and John Hay. In Great Britain, having been
evolved in conformity with its environment, it is
successful; but it is successful nowhere else. I have always
looked back with great complacency upon such men as
those above named in the State Department, and such as
Hamilton, Gallatin, Chase, Stanton, and Gage in other
departments, sitting quietly in their offices, giving calm
thought to government business, and allowing the heathen
to rage at their own sweet will in both houses of
Congress. Under the other system, our Republic might
perhaps have become almost as delectable as Venezuela
with its hundred and four revolutions in seventy years[13]

[13] See Lord Lansdowne's speech, December, 1902.

On the day following I dined with the Secretary of
State, and found him in his usual pleasant mood. Noting
on his dinner-service the words, ``Facta non verba,'' I
called his attention to them as a singular motto for an
eminent lawyer and orator; whereupon he said that, two
old members of Congress dining with him recently, one of
them asked the other what those words meant, to which
the reply was given, ``They mean, `Victuals, not talk.' ''

On the way to my post, I stopped in London and was
taken to various interesting places. At the house of my
old friend and Yale classmate, George Washburn Smalley,
I met a number of very interesting people, and among
these was especially impressed by Mr. Meredith Townshend,
whose knowledge of American affairs seemed amazingly
extensive and preternaturally accurate. At the
house of Sir William Harcourt I met Lord Ripon, about
that time Viceroy of India, whose views on dealings with
Orientals interested me much. At the Royal Institution
an old acquaintance was renewed with Tyndall and Huxley;
and during an evening with the eminent painter, Mr.
Alma-Tadema, at his house in the suburbs, and especially
when returning from it, I made a very pleasant acquaintance
with the poet Browning. As his carriage did not
arrive, I offered to take him home in mine; but hardly had
we started when we found ourselves in a dense fog, and
it shortly became evident that our driver had lost his
way. As he wandered about for perhaps an hour, hoping
to find some indication of it, Browning's conversation was
very agreeable. It ran at first on current questions, then
on travel, and finally on art,--all very simply and naturally,
with not a trace of posing or paradox. Remembering
the obscurity of his verse, I was surprised at the
lucidity of his talk. But at last, both of us becoming
somewhat anxious, we called a halt and questioned the
driver, who confessed that he had no idea where he was.
As good, or ill, luck would have it, there just then emerged
from the fog an empty hansom-cab, and finding that its
driver knew more than ours, I engaged him as pilot, first
to Browning's house, and then to my own.

One old friend to whom I was especially indebted was
Sir Charles Reed, who had been my fellow-commissioner
at the Paris and Philadelphia expositions. Thanks to
him, I was invited to the dinner of the lord mayor at the
Guildhall. As we lingered in the library before going
to the table, opportunity was given to study various eminent
guests. First came Cairns, the lord chancellor, in
all the glory of official robes and wig; then Lord Derby;
then Lord Salisbury, who, if I remember rightly, was
minister of foreign affairs; then, after several other
distinguished personages, most interesting of all, Lord
Beaconsfield, the prime minister. He was the last to arrive,
and immediately after his coming he presented his arm to
the lady mayoress, and the procession took its way toward
the great hall. From my seat, which was but a little
way from the high table, I had a good opportunity to
observe these men and to hear their speeches.

All was magnificent. Nothing of its kind could be more
splendid than the massive gold and silver plate piled
upon the lord mayor's table and behind it, nothing more
sumptuous than the dinner, nothing more quaint than
the ceremonial. Near the lord mayor, who was arrayed
in his robes, chain, and all the glories of his office, stood
the toastmaster, who announced the toasts in a manner
fit to make an American think himself dreaming,--something,
in fact, after this sort, in a queer singsong way,
with comical cadences, brought up at the end with a sharp
snap: ``Me lawds, la-a-a-dies and gentleme-e-e-n, by
commawnd of the Right Honorable the Lawrd Marr, I
cha-a-awrge you fill your glawse-e-e-s and drink to the
health of the Right Honorable the Ur-r-rll of Beck'nsfield.''

A main feature of the ceremony was the loving-cup.
Down each long table a large silver tankard containing
a pleasing beverage, of which the foundation seemed to
be claret, was passed; and, as it came, each of us in turn
arose, and, having received it solemnly from his neighbor,
who had drunk to his health, drank in return, and then,
turning to his next neighbor, drank to him; the latter
then received the cup, returned the compliment, and in the
same way passed it on.

During the whole entertainment I had frequently turned
my eyes toward the prime minister, and had been much
impressed by his apparent stolidity. When he presented
his arm to the lady mayoress, when he walked with her, and
during all the time at table, he seemed much like a wooden
image galvanized into temporary life. When he rose to
speak, there was the same wooden stiffness and he went
on in a kind of mechanical way until, suddenly, he darted
out a brilliant statement regarding the policy of the
government that aroused the whole audience; then, after more
of the same wooden manner and mechanical procedure,
another brilliant sentence; and so on to the end of the

All the speeches were good and to the point. There
were none of those despairing efforts to pump up fun
which so frequently make American public dinners
distressing. The speakers evidently bore in mind the fact
that on the following day their statements would be
pondered in the household of every well-to-do Englishman,
would be telegraphed to foreign nations, and would be
echoed back from friends and foes in all parts of the world.

After the regular speeches came a toast to the diplomatic
corps, and the person selected to respond was our
representative, the Honorable Edwards Pierpont. This
he did exceedingly well, and in less than five minutes.
Sundry American papers had indulged in diatribes
against fulsome speeches at English banquets by some of
Mr. Pierpont's predecessors, and he had evidently
determined that no such charge should be established against

Much was added to my pleasure by my neighbors at
the table--on one side, Sir Frederick Pollock, the eminent
father of the present Sir Frederick; and on the other,
Mr. Rolf, the ``remembrancer'' of the City of London.

This suggests the remark that, in my experience among
Englishmen, I have found very little of the coldness and
stiffness which are sometimes complained of. On the
contrary, whenever I have been thrown among them, whether
in Great Britain or on the Continent, they have generally
proved to be agreeable conversationists. One thing has
seemed to me at times curious and even comical: they will
frequently shut themselves up tightly from their
compatriots,--even from those of their own station,--and yet
be affable, and indeed expansive, to any American they
chance to meet. The reason for this is, to an American,
even more curious than the fact. I may discuss it later.

My arrival in Berlin took place just at the beginning of
the golden-wedding festivities of the old Emperor
William I. There was a wonderful series of pageants: historic
costume balls, gala operas, and the like, at court;
but most memorable to me was the kindly welcome extended
to us by all in authority, from the Emperor and
Empress down. The cordiality of the diplomatic corps
was also very pleasing, and during the presentations to
the ruling family of the empire I noticed one thing especially:
the great care with which they all, from the monarch
to the youngest prince, had prepared themselves to
begin a conversation agreeable to the new-comer. One
of these high personages started a discussion with me upon
American shipping; another, on American art; another, on
scenery in Colorado; another, on our railways and steamers;
still another, on American dentists and dentistry;
and, in case of a lack of other subjects, there was Niagara,
which they could always fall back upon.

The duty of a prince of the house of Hohenzollern is
by no means light; it involves toil. In my time, when
the present emperor, then the young Prince William,
brought his bride home, in addition to their other receptions
of public bodies, day after day and hour after hour,
they received the diplomatic corps, who were arranged
at the palace in a great circle, the ladies forming one half
and the gentlemen the other. The young princess,
accompanied by her train, beginning with the ladies, and
the young prince, with his train, beginning with the gentlemen,
each walked slowly around the interior of the entire
circle, stopping at each foreign representative and
speaking to him, often in the language of his own country,
regarding some subject which might be supposed to
interest him. It was really a surprising feat, for which, no
doubt, they had been carefully prepared, but which would
be found difficult even by many a well-trained scholar.

An American representative, in presenting his letter of
credence from the President of the United States to the
ruler of the German Empire, has one advantage in the fact
that he has an admirable topic ready to his hand, such as
perhaps no other minister has. This boon was given us
by Frederick the Great. He, among the first of Continental
rulers, recognized the American States as an independent
power; and therefore every American minister since,
including myself, has found it convenient, on presenting the
President's autograph letter to the King or Emperor, to
recall this event and to build upon it such an oratorical
edifice as circumstances may warrant. The fact that the
great Frederick recognized the new American Republic,
not from love of it, but on account of his detestation of
England, provoked by her conduct during his desperate
struggle against his Continental enemies, is, of course,
on such occasions diplomatically kept in the background.

The great power in Germany at that time was the
chancellor, Prince Bismarck. Nothing could be more
friendly and simple than his greeting; and however stately
his official entertainments to the diplomatic corps might
be, simplicity reigned at his family dinners, when his
conversation was apparently frank and certainly delightful.

To him I shall devote another chapter.

In those days an American minister at Berlin was
likely to find his personal relations with the German
minister of foreign affairs cordial, but his official
relations continuous war. Hardly a day passed without some
skirmish regarding the rights of ``German-Americans''
in their Fatherland. The old story constantly recurred
in new forms. Generally it was sprung by some man who
had left Germany just at the age for entering the army,
had remained in America just long enough to secure
naturalization, and then, without a thought of discharging
any of his American duties, had come back to claim
exemption from his German duties, and to flaunt his
American citizen papers in the face of the authorities of the
province where he was born. This was very galling
to these authorities, from the fact that such Americans
were often inclined to glory over their old schoolmates
and associates who had not taken this means of escaping
military duty; and it was no wonder that these brand-
new citizens, if their papers were not perfectly regular,
were sometimes held for desertion until the American
representative could intervene.

Still other cases were those where fines had been
imposed upon men of this class for non-appearance when
summoned to military duty, and an American minister
was expected to secure their remission.

In simple justice to Germany, it ought to be said that
there is no foreign matter of such importance so little
understood in the United States as this. The average
American, looking on the surface of things, cannot see
why the young emigrant is not allowed to go and come as
he pleases. The fact is that German policy in this
respect has been evolved in obedience to the instinct of
national self-preservation. The German Empire, the
greatest Continental home of civilization, is an open camp,
perpetually besieged. Speaking in a general way, it has
no natural frontiers of any sort--neither mountains nor
wide expanses of sea. Eastward are one hundred and
thirty millions of people fanatically hostile as regards
race, religion, and imaginary interests; westward is
another great nation of forty millions, with a hatred on all
these points intensified by desire for revenge; northward
is a vigorous race estranged by old quarrels; and south
is a power which is largely hostile on racial, religious, and
historic grounds, and at best a very uncertain reliance.
Under such circumstances, universal military service in
Germany is a condition of its existence, and evasion of
this is naturally looked upon as a sort of treason. The
real wonder is that Germany has been so moderate in her
dealing with this question. The yearly ``budgets of military
cases'' in the archives of the American Embassy bear
ample testimony to her desire to be just and even lenient.

To understand the position of Germany, let us suppose
that our Civil War had left our Union--as at one time
seemed likely--embracing merely a small number of Middle
States and covering a space about as large as Texas,
with a Confederacy on our southern boundary bitterly
hostile, another hostile nation extending from the west
bank of the Mississippi to the Rocky Mountains; a Pacific
confederation jealous and faultfinding; British dominions
to the northward vexed by commercial and personal
grievances; and New England a separate and doubtful
factor in the whole situation. In that case we too would
have established a military system akin to that of Germany;
but whether we would have administered it as
reasonably as Germany has done is very doubtful.

Fortunately for the United States and for me, there was
in the ministry of foreign affairs, when I arrived, one of
the most admirable men I have ever known in such a
position: Baron von Blow. He came of an illustrious
family, had great influence with the old Emperor William,
with Parliament, and in society; was independent, large
in his views, and sincerely devoted to maintaining the
best relations between his country and ours. In cases such
as those just referred to he was very broad-minded; and
in one of the first which I had to present to him, when
I perhaps showed some nervousness, he said, ``Mr.
Minister, don't allow cases of this kind to vex you; I had
rather give the United States two hundred doubtful cases
every year than have the slightest ill-feeling arise between
us.'' This being the fact, it was comparatively easy to
deal with him. Unfortunately, he died early during my
stay, and some of the ministers who succeeded him had
neither his independence nor his breadth of view.

It sometimes seemed to me, while doing duty at the
German capital in those days as minister, and at a more
recent period as ambassador, that I could not enter my
office without meeting some vexatious case. One day it
was an American who, having thought that patriotism
required him, in a crowded railway carriage, roundly to
denounce Germany, the German people, and the imperial
government, had passed the night in a guard-house;
another day, it was one who, feeling called upon, in a
restaurant, to proclaim very loudly and grossly his
unfavorable opinion of the Emperor, had been arrested; on still
another occasion it was one of our fellow-citizens who,
having thought that he ought to be married in Berlin as
easily as in New York, had found himself entangled in a
network of regulations, prescriptions, and prohibitions.

Of this latter sort there were in my time several curious
cases. One morning a man came rushing into the
legation in high excitement and exclaimed, ``Mr. Minister,
I am in the worst fix that any decent man was ever
in; I want you to help me out of it.'' And he then went
on with a bitter tirade against everybody and everything
in the German Empire. When his wrath had effervesced
somewhat, he stated his case as follows: ``Last year, while
traveling through Germany, I fell in love with a young
German lady, and after my return to America became
engaged to her. I have now come for my bride; the wedding
is fixed for next Thursday; our steamer passages are
taken a day or two later; and I find that the authorities
will not allow me to marry unless I present a multitude
of papers such as I never dreamed of; some of them it
will take months to get, and some I can never get. My
intended bride is in distress; her family evidently distrust
me; the wedding is postponed indefinitely; and my business
partner is cabling me to come back to America as
soon as possible. I am asked for a baptismal certificate--
a Taufschein. Now, so far as I know, I was never
baptized. I am required to present a certificate showing the
consent of my parents to my marriage--I, a man thirty
years old and in a large business of my own! I am asked
to give bonds for the payment of my debts in Germany. I
owe no such debts; but I know no one who will give
such a bond. I am notified that the banns must be
published a certain number of times before the wedding.
What kind of a country is this, anyhow?''

We did the best we could. In an interview with the
minister of public worship I was able to secure a
dispensation from the publishing of the banns; then a bond was
drawn up which I signed and thus settled the question
regarding possible debts in Germany. As to the baptismal
certificate, I ordered inscribed, on the largest possible
sheet of official paper, the gentleman's affidavit that, in
the State of Ohio, where he was born, no Taufschein, or
baptismal certificate, was required at the time of his birth,
and to this was affixed the largest seal of the legation, with
plenty of wax. The form of the affidavit may be judged
peculiar; but it was thought best not to startle the
authorities with the admission that the man had not been
baptized at all. They could easily believe that a State like
Ohio, which some of them doubtless regarded as still in
the backwoods and mainly tenanted by the aborigines,
might have omitted, in days gone by, to require a Taufschein;
but that an unbaptized Christian should offer himself
to be married in Germany would perhaps have so
paralyzed their powers of belief that permission for the
marriage could never have been secured.

In this and various other ways we overcame the
difficulties, and, though the wedding did not take place upon
the appointed day, and the return to America had to be
deferred, the couple, at last, after marriage first before
the public authorities, and then in church, were able to
depart in peace.

Another case was typical. One morning a gentleman
came into the legation in the greatest distress; and I soon
learned that this, too, was a marriage case--but very
different from the other. This gentleman, a naturalized
German-American in excellent standing, had come over
to claim his bride. He had gone through all the
formalities perfectly, and, as his business permitted it, had
decided to reside a year abroad in order that he might take
the furniture of his apartment back to America free of
duty. This apartment, a large and beautiful suite of
rooms, he had already rented, had furnished it very fully,
and then, for the few days intervening before his marriage,
had put it under care of his married sister. But, alas! this
sister's husband was a bankrupt, and hardly had she taken
charge of the apartment when the furniture was seized by
her husband's creditors, seals placed upon its doors by
the authorities, ``and,'' said the man, in his distress,
``unless you do something it will take two years to reach the
case on the calendar; meantime I must pay the rent of the
apartment and lose the entire use of it as well as of the
furniture.'' ``But,'' said I, ``what can be done?'' He
answered, ``My lawyer says that if you will ask it as a
favor from the judge, he will grant an order bringing the
case up immediately.'' To this I naturally replied that
I could hardly interfere with a judge in any case before
him; but his answer was pithy. Said he, ``You are the
American minister, and if you are not here to get Americans
out of scrapes, I should like to know what you ARE
here for.'' This was unanswerable, and in the afternoon
I drove in state to the judge, left an official card upon him,
and then wrote, stating the case carefully, and saying that,
while I could not think of interfering in any case before
him, still, that as this matter appeared to me one of especial
hardship, if it could be reached at once the ends of justice
would undoubtedly be furthered thereby. That my
application was successful was shown by the fact that the
man thus rescued never returned to thank his benefactor.

A more important part of a minister's duty is in
connection with the commercial relations between the two
nations. Each country was attempting, by means of its
tariffs, to get all the advantage possible, and there resulted
various German regulations bearing heavily on some
American products. This started questions which had to
be met with especial care, requiring many interviews with
the foreign office and with various members of the
imperial cabinet.

In looking after commercial relations, a general
oversight of the consuls throughout the empire was no small
part of the minister's duty. The consular body was good
--remarkably good when one considers the radically
vicious policy which prevails in the selection and retention
of its members. But the more I saw of it, the stronger
became my conviction that the first thing needed is that,
when our government secures a thoroughly good man in
a consular position, it should keep him there; and, moreover,
that it should establish a full system of promotions
for merit. Under the present system the rule is that, as
soon as a man is fit for the duties, he is rotated out of office
and supplanted by a man who has all his duties to learn.
I am glad to say that of late years there have been many
excellent exceptions to this rule; and one of my most
earnest hopes, as a man loving my country and desirous of its
high standing abroad, is that, more and more, the tendency,
both as regards the consular and diplomatic service,
may be in the direction of sending men carefully fitted for
positions, and of retaining them without regard to changes
in the home administration.

Still another part of the minister's duty was the careful
collection of facts regarding important subjects, and the
transmission of them to the State department. These were
embodied in despatches. Such subjects as railway
management, the organization and administration of city
governments, the growth of various industries, the creation
of new schools of instruction, the development of public
libraries, and the like, as well as a multitude of other
practical matters, were thus dwelt upon.

It was also a duty of the minister to keep a general
oversight of the interests of Americans within his
jurisdiction. There are always a certain number of Americans
in distress,--real, pretended, or imaginary,--and these
must be looked after; then there are American statesmen
seeking introductions or information, American scholars
in quest of similar things in a different field, American
merchants and manufacturers seeking access to men and
establishments which will enable them to build up their
own interests and those of their country, and, most
interesting of all, American students at the university and
other advanced schools in Berlin and throughout
Germany. To advise with these and note their progress
formed a most pleasing relief from strictly official matters.

Least pleasing of all duties was looking after fugitives
from justice or birds of prey evidently seeking new
victims. On this latter point, I recall an experience which
may throw some light on the German mode of watching
doubtful persons. A young American had appeared in
various public places wearing a naval uniform to which
he was not entitled, declaring himself a son of the President
of the United States, and apparently making ready
for a career of scoundrelism. Consulting the minister of
foreign affairs one day, I mentioned this case, asking him
to give me such information as came to him. He
answered, ``Remind me at your next visit, and perhaps I
can show you something.'' On my calling some days later,
the minister handed me a paper on which was inscribed
apparently not only every place the young man had
visited, but virtually everything he had done and said during
the past week, his conversations in the restaurants being
noted with especial care; and while the man was evidently
worthless, he was clearly rather a fool than a
scoundrel. On my expressing surprise at the fullness of
this information, the minister seemed quite as much
surprised at my supposing it possible for any good
government to exist without such complete surveillance of
suspected persons.

Another curious matter which then came up was the
selling of sham diplomas by a pretended American university.
This was brought to my notice in sundry letters, and
finally by calls from one or two young Germans who were
considering the advisability of buying a doctorate from a
man named Buchanan, who claimed to be president of the
``University of Philadelphia.'' Although I demonstrated
to them the worthlessness of such sham degrees of a non-
existent institution, they evidently thought that to obtain
one would aid them in their professions, and were inclined
to make a purchase. From time to time there were slurs
in the German papers upon all American institutions of
learning, based upon advertisements of such diplomas;
and finally my patriotic wrath was brought to a climax
by a comedy at the Royal Theater, in which the rascal of
the piece, having gone through a long career of scoundrelism,
finally secures a diploma from the ``University

In view of this, I wrote not only despatches to the Secretary
of State, but private letters to leading citizens of
Philadelphia, calling their attention to the subject, and
especially to the injury that this kind of thing was doing
to the University of Pennsylvania, an institution of which
every Philadelphian, and indeed every American, has a
right to be proud. As a result, the whole thing was broken
up, and, though it has been occasionally revived, it has not
again inflicted such a stigma upon American education.

But perhaps the most annoying business of all arose
from presentations at court. The mania of many of our
fellow-citizens for mingling with birds of the finest feather
has passed into a European proverb which is unjust to the
great body of Americans; but at present there seems to
be no help for it, the reputation of the many suffering for
the bad taste of the few. Nothing could exceed the
pertinacity shown in some cases. Different rules prevail at
different courts, and at the imperial court of Germany
the rule for some years has been that persons eminent
in those walks of life that are especially honored will
always be welcome, and that the proper authority, on being
notified of their presence, will extend such invitations
as may seem warranted. Unfortunately, while some of
the most worthy visitors did not make themselves known,
some persons far less desirable took too much pains to
attract notice. A satirist would find rich material in the
archives of our embassies and legations abroad. I have
found nowhere more elements of true comedy and even
broad farce than in some of the correspondence on this
subject there embalmed.

But while this class of applicants is mainly made up of
women, fairness compels me to say that there is a similar
class of men. These are persons possessed of an insatiate
and at times almost insane desire to be able, on their
return, to say that they have talked with a crowned head.

Should the sovereign see one in ten of the persons from
foreign nations who thus seek him, he would have no time
for anything else. He therefore insists, like any private
person in any country, on his right not to give his time to
those who have no real claim upon him, and some very
good fellow-citizens of ours have seemed almost inclined
to make this feeling of his Majesty a casus belli.

On the other hand there are large numbers of Americans
making demands, and often very serious demands, of time
and labor on their diplomatic representative which it is
an honor and pleasure to render. Of these are such as,
having gained a right to do so by excellent work in their
respective fields at home, come abroad, as legislators
or educators or scientific investigators or engineers or
scholars or managers of worthy business enterprises, to
extend their knowledge for the benefit of their country.
No work has been more satisfactory to my conscience than
the aid which I have been able to render to men and women
of this sort.

Still, one has to make discriminations. I remember
especially a very charming young lady of, say, sixteen
summers, who came to me saying that she had agreed to write
some letters for a Western newspaper, and that she wished
to visit all the leading prisons, reformatory institutions,
and asylums of Germany. I looked into her pretty face,
and soon showed her that the German Government would
never think of allowing a young lady like herself to
inspect such places as those she had named, and that in my
opinion they were quite right; but I suggested a series
of letters on a multitude of things which would certainly
prove interesting and instructive, and which she might
easily study in all parts of Germany. She took my advice,
wrote many such letters, and the selection which she
published proved to be delightful.

But at times zeal for improvements at home goes
perilously far toward turning the activity of an ambassador
or minister from its proper channels. Scores of people
write regarding schools for their children, instructors in
music, cheap boarding-houses, and I have had an excellent
fellow-citizen ask me to send him a peck of turnips.
But if the applications are really from worthy persons,
they can generally be dealt with in ways which require no
especial labor--many of them through our consuls, to
whom they more properly belong.

Those who really ask too much, insisting that the
embassy shall look after their private business, may be
reminded that the rules of the diplomatic service forbid
such investigations, in behalf of individuals, without
previous instructions from the State Department.

Of the lesser troublesome people may be named, first,
those who are looking up their genealogies. A typical
letter made up from various epistles, as a ``composite''
portrait is made out of different photographs, would run
much as follows:

SIR: I have reason to suppose that I am descended from an
old noble family in Germany. My grandfather's name was Max
Schulze. He came, I think, from some part of Austria or Bavaria
or Schleswig-Holstein. Please trace back my ancestry and let me
know the result at your earliest convenience.
Yours truly,

Another more troublesome class is that of people seeking
inheritances. A typical letter, compounded as above,
would run somewhat as follows:

SIR: I am assured that a fortune of several millions of marks
left by one John Mller, who died in some part of Germany two
or three centuries ago, is held at the imperial treasury awaiting
heirs. My grandmother's name was Miller. Please look the
matter up and inform me as to my rights.
Yours truly,

P.S. If you succeed in getting the money, I will be glad to pay
you handsomely for your services.

Such letters as this are easily answered. During this
first sojourn of mine at Berlin as minister, I caused a
circular, going over the whole ground, to be carefully
prepared and to be forwarded to applicants. In this occur
the following words: ``We have yearly, from various parts
of the United States, a large number of applications for
information or aid regarding great estates in Germany
supposed to be awaiting heirs. They are all more or less
indefinite, many sad, and some ludicrous. . . . There are
in Germany no large estates, awaiting distribution to
unknown heirs, in the hands of the government or of anybody,
and all efforts to discover such estates that the legation
has ever made or heard of have proved fruitless.''

Among the many odd applications received at that
period, one revealed an American superstition by no means
unusual. The circumstances which led to it were as follows:

An ample fund, said to be forty or fifty thousand
dollars, had been brought together in Philadelphia for the
erection of an equestrian statue to Washington, and it had
been finally decided to intrust the commission to Professor
Siemering, one of the most eminent of modern German
sculptors. One day there came to me a letter from
an American gentleman whom I had met occasionally
many years before, asking me to furnish him with a full
statement regarding Professor Siemering's works and
reputation. As a result, I made inquiries among the leading
authorities on modern art, and, everything being most
favorable, I at last visited his studio, and found a large
number of designs and models of works on which he
was then engaged,--two or three being of the highest
importance, among them the great war monument at

I also found that, although he had executed and was
executing important works for various other parts of
Germany, he had not yet put up any great permanent
work in Berlin, though the designs of the admirable
temporary statues and decorations on the return of the troops
from the Franco-Prussian War to the metropolis had
been intrusted largely to him.

These facts I stated to my correspondent in a letter, and
in due time received an answer in substance as follows:

SIR: Your letter confirms me in the opinion I had formed.
The intrusting of the great statue of Washington to a man like
Siemering is a job and an outrage. It is clear that he is a mere
pretender, since he has erected no statue as yet in Berlin. That
statue of the Father of our Country ought to have been intrusted
to native talent. I have a son fourteen years old who has
greatly distinguished himself. He has modeled a number of
figures in butter and putty which all my friends think are most
remarkable. I am satisfied that he could have produced a work
which, by its originality and power, would have done honor to
our country and to art.
Yours very truly,
---- ----.

Curious, too, was the following: One morning the mail
brought me a large packet filled with little squares of
cheap cotton cloth. I was greatly puzzled to know their
purpose until, a few days later, there came a letter which,
with changes of proper names, ran as follows:

PODUNK, ----, 1880.

SIR: We are going to have a fancy fair for the benefit of the
---- Church in this town, and we are getting ready some autograph
bed-quilts. I have sent you a package of small squares of
cotton cloth, which please take to the Emperor William and his
wife, also to Prince Bismarck and the other princes and leading
persons of Germany, asking them to write their names on them
and send them to me as soon as possible.
Yours truly,
---- ----.

P.S. Tell them to be sure to write their names in the middle
of the pieces, for fear that their autographs may get sewed in.

My associations with the diplomatic corps I found
especially pleasing. The dean, as regarded seniority, was
the Italian ambassador, Count Delaunay, a man of large
experience and kindly manners. He gave me various
interesting reminiscences of his relations with Cavour, and
said that when he was associated with the great Italian
statesman, the latter was never able to get time for him,
except at five o'clock in the morning, and that this was
their usual hour of work.

Another very interesting person was the representative
of Great Britain--Lord Odo Russell. He was full of
interesting reminiscences of his life at Washington, at Rome,
and at Versailles with Bismarck. As to Rome, he gave me
interesting stories of Pope Pius IX, who, he said, was
inclined to be jocose, and even to speak in a sportive way
regarding exceedingly serious subjects.[14] As to Cavour,
he thought him a greater man even than Bismarck; and
this from a man so intimate with the German chancellor
was a testimony of no small value.

[14] One of these reminiscences I have given elsewhere.

As to his recollections of Versailles, he was present at
the proclamation of the Empire in the Galerie des Glaces,
and described the scene to me very vividly.

His relations with Bismarck were very close, and the
latter once paid him a compliment which sped far; saying
that, as a rule, he distrusted an Englishman who spoke
French very correctly, but that there was one exception--
Lord Odo Russell.

At the risk of repeating a twice-told tale, I may refer
here to his visit to Bismarck when the latter complained
that he was bothered to death with bores who took his
most precious time, and asked Lord Odo how he got rid
of them. After making some reply, the latter asked
Bismarck what plan he had adopted. To this the chancellor
answered that he and Johanna (the princess) had hit
upon a plan, which was that when she thought her husband
had been bored long enough, she came in with a bottle
and said, ``Now, Otto, you know that it is time for you
to take your medicine.'' Hardly were the words out of
his mouth, when in came the princess with the bottle and
repeated the very words which her husband had just

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