CHAPTER XXIII
THE JAY TREATY

THE party feeling during Washington's Administration attained its highest point when the Jay treaty came before the country, and the denunciation hurled against the treaty party was not intended to leave the President untouched. That the public mind should be deeply stirred on the subject of the treaty was only natural, for the treatment which the feeblest and most contemptible States now receive from the strongest and most unscrupulous is honourable fairness itself when compared with the indignities and injuries which Great Britain inflicted upon the United States from the time of the treaty of peace until the close of the war of 1812. Our feebleness compelled us to endure an almost complete deprivation of international rights, and as long as the Confederation existed England had as a good reason for her contemptuous attitude the knowledge that our flimsy union could not long endure under our system of Government. When the break up should come she had every reason to hope that some, if not all, the States would return to the allegiance which they had held for a hundred years. When the Constitution was put into operation we were indeed a nation, but one tottering from very infancy, and safe to be insulted by a Power old, relentless and powerful.

Accordingly Great Britain continued to hold the frontier posts, which, under the terms of the treaty of peace, she had promised to surrender. In consequence, the neighbouring Indian tribes were under her jurisdiction and in a state of hostility to American settlers. The settlement of the frontier territory was retarded, some

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