A Letter to Jefferson Davis
To: Jefferson Davis
Subject: Comments to your speech of January 12, 1863
Dear President Davis,
In regard to your speech before the Confederate Congress criticizing Europe for our inability to recognize the Confederate States of America, it seems almost certain that the act of emancipation by President Lincoln has made it difficult, if not impossible, for England or France to officially recognize the Confederacy in view of the antislavery sentiments among our home populations, especially here in England. Your defeat September last at Antietam has lessened our confidence that your army has the means and manpower to defeat the United States. It was very possible that France, England, and perhaps even Russia would have recognized the new country if you had been victorious. Our navies would have no problem breaking the Union blockade that has hampered trade, in particular exporting the cotton needed for our mills and to deliver highly profitable war materials to you. France, who already has troops in Mexico, may have even provided ground forces to support the South. Unfortunately, this will not be happening. We shall keep an eye on developments as time passes, but at this time we have no intention of any recognition. In the meantime, I have made arrangements for Captain and Colonel Arthur J.L. Fremantle of the Queen's Coldstream Guards to privately "vacation" in the Confederate States. He will not be on any official business, but may opt to observe your army. Expect his arrival sometime around April 2 of this year.
Sir Roundell Palmer
Her Majesty's Solicitor General for England and Wales