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    British Ambassador Lord Richard Lyons Writes Foreign Minister Earl Russell.
    13 p., Washington, D.C., July 29, 1864, 7.25" x 9.25", very good. A detailed letter providing comments on Lincoln's administration, military actions, and various political topics. It reads in part: "Mr. Seward spoke to me very complacently yesterday of his relations with England, France, Spain and Europe in general: He spoke with great satisfaction of the triumph of the Government in Parliament, and went on to say that there were only two matters which he thought might cause 'trouble'." The two troubles were the capture of the Confederate raider Alabama, along with the presence of the British warship Florida floating just off the coast of Bermuda. He goes on to write, "[Seward] begged me to point out to you that although language had been used in Parliament far from agreeable to American feeling, nothing unkind or disrespectful to England had been said during the whole session by any member of Congress...Indeed I had myself remarked that the language of Congress had been more civil towards England and less civil towards France than usual..."

    Lyons continued, writing about additional political issues including the Reciprocity Treaty and the "San Juan question", both of which he thought could wait "until the military results of the present campaign were more apparent...All is now supposed to depend upon Sherman's Army before Atlanta. It seems to be admitted that Grant can do nothing without a large increase of force, and no one knows where the increase is to come from. Some people expect wonders from a great mine which has been pushed under one of the principal Confederate works before Petersburgh, and which is said to be exploded next week. Unless it produces a panic, it seems very doubtful whether it will produce any great result at all..." Lyons concludes his letter with the sentiment, "The best sign I see is that as the Election approaches, the arbitrary military measure at New York and other great places seem to be relaxed. A great military success in the field would no doubt enable the government to show vigour again in oppressing its enemies, or rather its political opponents. Yours sincerely Lyons."

    Richard Bickerton Pemell Lyons (1817-1887) was a favorite of Queen Victoria and served as British Ambassador to the United States from 1858 to 1865. An extraordinary letter concerning Anglo-American relations during the Civil War! With usual light toning and flattened folds. Overall very good condition.


    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    November, 2019
    2nd Saturday
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