Mr. Schlözer to Mr. Fish.

Sir: I have the honor to acknowledge the receipt of your kind note of the 12th instant, in reply to my own of the 8th, concerning the matter of Leopold Ungar.

If I take the liberty to return once more to the same subject I do so for the following reasons:

By your note it would seem that I requested “that the consul-general of the United States at Alexandria may be instructed to surrender certain packages which are said to be in the possession of one Twiney.”

Your note, moreover, points out that “there is no authority here to compel him (Twiney) to surrender property in his possession, as requested by Mr. Schlozer.”

I here must allow myself to state that I have received no instructions whatever from my government to make either of the above requests, and on a reperusal of my note I cannot find there anything in allusion to such prayers.

The object of my note was the following:

Ungar has left in Alexandria certain packages in the possession of Twiney. These packages are demanded by the tribunal at Cologne. Twiney refuses to surrender the packages, because he pretends that Ungar is an American citizen.

The German government holds that in consequence of the treaty of 1868, Ungar is a Prussian citizen.

This opinion is not adopted by Twiney nor by the United States consul-general at Alexandria. Hence, the German government wishes to have the decision by the United States government about this question of nationality, and I did allow myself to beg you for such a decision, believing that the United States Department of State, which has made the treaty, would be the competent authority to give the decision.

In case your opinion should coincide with that of my government, I requested, moreover, that you would kindly communicate the fact (i. e. your opinion on Ungar’s Prussian nationality) to the United States consul-general at Alexandria.

Your note, however, states in conclusion, that the Executive authority is not competent to decide this matter of nationality, but that it more properly is a judicial question.

Under these circumstances, I beg your permission to request that you would have the kindness to point out to me the way in which to meet the demand of my government, or to kindly procure for me—if it should be possible—the opinion of the United States Attorney-General upon the subject in question.

Accept, sir, the renewed assurances of my highest consideration.