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Produced by Dianne Bean
MAXIMILIAN IN MEXICO
A WOMAN'S REMINISCENCES OF THE FRENCH INTERVENTION 1862-1867
SARA YORKE STEVENSON, Sc. D.
NEW YORK copyright 1897, 1898, 1899 THE CENTURY CO.
TO THE MEMORY OF SENOR DON MATIAS ROMERO MINISTER OF MEXICO TO WASHINGTON 1882-1898.
One of the latest survivors of the drama, some episodes of which are herein related.
His approval of five articles on the French Intervention and the reign of Maximilian, which appeared in the "Century Magazine" in 1897, and his earnest request that they "be published in a more permanent form, led to the presentation of this volume to the public.
With deepest appreciation of the important part played by this Mexican patriot in checking the aggressive policy of Europe upon this continent, the author here inscribes his name.
Part I. The Triple Alliance, 1861-62 I. El Dorado . . . . . . . . . 1 II. The New "Napoleonic Idea" . . . . 7 III. M. De Saligny And M. Jecker . . . 17 IV. The Allies In Mexico . . . . . . 24 V. Rupture Between The Allies . . . . 36
Part II. The French: Intervention, 1862-64 I. The Author Leaves Paris For Mexico . . 47 II. Puebla And Mexico--General De Lorencez--General Zaragoza . 66 III. The Siege of Puebla--General Forey--General Ortega . .82 IV. The French In The City Of Mexico--The Regency . . . 93
Part III. The Empire Of Maximilian I, 1864-65 I. Marshal Bazaine . . . . . . . 117 II. A Bed Of Roses In A Gold-Mine . . . .125 III. Thorns . . . . . . . . . 136
Part IV. The Awakening I. "A Cloud No Bigger Than A Man's Hand" . . . 161 II. La Debacle . . . . . . . 188 III. Comedy And Tragedy . . . . 207 IV. General Castelnau . . . . . 232 V. The End Of The French Intervention . . . 256
Part V. The End I. Queretaro, 1867 . . . . . . 269
Appendices A. The Bando Negro (Black Decree) Proclamation Of Emperor Maximilian, October 3, 1865. . . .309 B. Treaty Of Miramar, Signed On April 10, 1864 . . 315
List Of Illustrations Frontsview Page Napoleon III, Eugenie, And Duc De Morny . . 9 Maximilian Gold Coin . . . . . . 19 Agustin De Iturbide . . . . . . . 29 Miguel Miramon . . . . . . 39 President Benito Pablo Juarez . . . . . 49 General Prim . . . . . . . . 59 Porfirio Diaz . . . . . . . . . 69 Matias Romero . . . . . . . . 79 From "Mexico and The United States," by permission of G.P.Putnam's Sons. Chapultepec, Maximilian's Palace . . . . 89 Empress Charlotte . . . . . . . 99 Colonel Van Der Smissen . . . . . . 109 Marechal Bazaine And Madame La Marechale . 119 Matthew Fontaine Maury . . . . 129 After a Photograph By D. H. Anderson. Comte De Thun De Hohenstein . . . . . 143 Photographed By Merille. Count Von Funfkirkchen . . . . . . . 153 From Photograph By Montes De Oca. Ex-Confederate Generals In Mexico . . . 171 Dr. William M. Gwin . . . . . . . 183 From A Steel-Engraving By A. B. Walter For "The Democratic Review." General Mejia . . . . 195 Marquis De Gallifet . . . . . . . 211 After Photograph By Nadar. Colonel Tourre, Third Zouaves . . . . 227 After Photograph By Montes De Oca. Comte De Bombelles . . . . . . . 239 After Photograph By Aubert & Co. General Castelnau . . . . . . . 251 Colonel Dupin . . . . . . . . . 263 Surrender of Maximilian, May 15, 1867 . . . 275 Don Pedro Rincon Gallardo . . . . 283 From A Photograph By Cruces y Campa. Guard And Sergeant Who Shot Maximilian . . 291 Last Day Of Maximilian . . . . . . . 297 The Calvary Of Queretaro, Showing Where Maximilian, Mejia, And Miramon Were Shot . . . 300 The Last Moments Of Maximilian . . . . 301 The Hack In Which Maximilian Was Taken To The Place Of Execution . . . . .304 Monuments Marking The Place of Execution . . 307
In offering these pages to the public, my aim is not to write a historical sketch of the reign of Maximilian of Austria, nor is it to give a description of the political crisis through which Mexico passed during that period. My only desire is to furnish the reader with a point of view the value of which lies in the fact that it is that of an eyewitness who was somewhat more than an ordinary spectator of a series of occurrences which developed into one of the most dramatic episodes of modern times.
Historians too often present their personages to the public and to posterity as actors upon a stage,--I was about to say as puppets in a show,--whose acts are quite outside of themselves, and whose voices express emotions not their own. They appear before the footlights of a fulfilled destiny; and their doubts, their weaknesses, are concealed, along with their temptations, beneath the paint and stage drapery lent them by the historian who, knowing beforehand the denouement toward which their efforts tended, unconsciously assumes a like knowledge on their part. They are thus often credited with deep-laid motives and plans which it may perhaps have been impossible for them to entertain at the time.
To those who lived with them when they were MAKING history, these actors are all aglow with life. They are animated by its passions, its impulses. They are urged onward by personal ambition, or held back by selfish considerations. They are not characters in a drama; they are men of the world, whose official acts, like those of the men about us to-day, are influenced by their affections, their family complications, their prejudices, their rivalries, their avarice, their vanity. The circumstances of their private life temporarily excite or depress their energies, and often give them a new and unlooked-for direction; and the success or failure of their undertakings may be recognized as having been the result of their individual limitations, of their personal ignorance of the special conditions with which they were called upon to cope, or of their short-sightedness.
In this lies the importance of private recollections. The gossip of one epoch forms part of the history of the next. It is therefore to be deplored that those whose more or less obscure lives run their course in the shadow of some public career are seldom sufficiently aware of the fact at the time to note accurately their observations and impressions.
These thoughts occurred to me when, at the request of the editor of the "Century," I one night took up my pen, and gathering about me old letters, photographs, and small tokens faded and yellow with age, plunged deep into the recollections of my youthful days, and evoked the ghosts of brilliant friends, many of whom have since passed away, leaving but names written in lines of blood upon a page of history. As they appeared across a chasm of thirty years, the well-remembered faces familiarly smiled, each flinging a memory. They formed a motley company: generals now dead, whose names are revered or execrated by their countrymen; lieutenants and captains who have since made their way in the world, or have died, broken-hearted heroes, before Metz or Sedan; women who seemed obscure, but whose names, in the general convulsion of nations, have risen to newspaper notoriety or to lasting fame; soldiers who have become historians; guerrilleros now pompously called generals; adventurers who have grown into personages; personages who have sunk into adventurers; sovereigns who have become martyrs.
They had all been laid away in my mind, buried in the ashes of the past along with the old life. The drama in which each had played his part had for many years seemed as far off and dim as though read in a book a long time ago; and yet now, how alive it all suddenly became--alive with a life that no pen can picture!
There were their photographs and their invitations, their old notes and bits of doggerel sent to accompany small courtesies--flowers, music, a Havana dog, or the loan of a horse. It was all vivid and real enough now. Those men were not to me mere historical figures of whom one reads. They fought historic battles, they founded a historic though ephemeral empire; their defeats, their triumphs, their "deals," their blunders, were now matters of history: but for all that, they were of common flesh and blood, and the strange incidents of a strangely picturesque episode in the existence of this continent seemed natural enough if one only knew the men.
Singly or in groups, the procession slowly passed, each one pausing for a brief space in the flood of light cast by an awakening memory. Many wore uniforms--French, Austrian, Belgian, Mexican. Some were dancing gaily, laughing and flirting as they went by. Others looked careworn and
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