Mr. Van Valkenburgh to Mr. Seward.

No. 66.]

Sir: With my dispatch No. 64, of the 16th November, 1867, I had the honor to transmit copy of arrangements unanimously adopted by the foreign representatives and the Japanese government for the municipal government of Yokohama.

A subordinate officer of the British consulate at this port was [Page 766] temporarily and for a period of six months placed in charge of the office of municipal director.

This appointment proving unacceptable to several of the more prominent residents of Yokohama, it was determined by the representatives, when the term of service of the temporary director was about expiring, to leave the selection of his successor to the foreign community.

Candidates for the office soon presented themselves, and all the foreigners duly registered at their respective consulates were entitled to vote. The election took place and resulted in placing in the office of municipal director of Yokohama Mr. E. S. Benson, an American citizen, at a fixed salary of $250 per month, with an additional amount of $100 per month for house rent. The office is for an indefinite period, under appointment of the local government, to be terminated by a three months’ notice from either party.

Mr. Benson’s appointment was confirmed by the consul; he was then recommended by the foreign representatives, and he entered upon his duties on the 1st instant.

I have the honor to be, sir, very respectfully, your most obedient servant,


Hon. William H. Seward, Secretary of State, Washington, D. C.