No. 478.
Mr. Foster to Mr. Fish.

No. 135.]

Sir: I am this day in receipt of your dispatch No. 90, March 25, relating to the interference of General Cortina, at Matamoras, in preventing the extradition of one Alexander D. Hamilton. Immediately on receipt thereof, I sent to the minister of foreign affairs a copy of the dispatch of Mr. Wilson, inclosed in your No. 90, with a representation that the Government of the United States would expect such orders to be given as will allow the treaty to be carried into effect according to its terms. (Inclosure 1.)

Within an hour after the transmission of this note, I was personally informed by the minister that the President had aleady seen some notice of the action of General Cortina in the public press, and had at once sent telegrams to the governor of the State, to General Cortina, and to the military commander, calling for information on the subject, [Page 745] and that immediately upon the receipt of my note the President had instructed the minister of war to send orders to the military commander at Matamoras, Colonel Cristo, to arrest Hamilton and hold him at all hazards, subject to the provisions of the extradition treaty. And in confirmation of this information, I have to-night received an official note from the minister of foreign affairs, of which I inclose a translation. (Inclosure 2.)

I am, &c.,

[Inclosure 1 in No. 135.]

Mr. Foster to Mr. Lafragua.

Sir: I herewith inclose to your excellency a copy of a dispatch from Mr. Wilson, the United States consul at Matamoras, in the State of Tamaulipas, to the Department of State at Washington, from which it appears that the arrest of one Alexander D. Hamilton, charged with a crime for which, pursuant to the treaty of 1881, his extradition may he required, has been prevented by the interference in his favor of General John N. Cortina, acting as mayor of Matamoras.

I am instructed by my Government to bring the facts stated in the inclosed copy of Mr. Wilson’s dispatch to the attention of your excellency, and to state that it is expected such orders will be given as will allow the treaty to be carried into effect according to its terms. I do not doubt that the Mexican government will promptly adopt such measures in this case as are required by the treaty and the demands of justice.

I remain, with great respect, your excellency’s obedient servant,

[Inclosure 2 in No. 135.]

Mr. Lafragua to Mr. Foster.

Sir: I have laid before the President your excellency’s note of to-day, in which you are pleased to inform me, referring to a dispatch from Mr. Wilson, consul of the United States at Matamoros, that the arrest of a person named Alexander Hamilton, accused of a crime for which, according to the treaty of 1861, his extradition is demanded, has been prevented by the intervention of General Juan N. Cortina, to which fact your excellency calls my attention, in the hope that orders will be given in conformity with said treaty, so as to render it effective, since your excellency does not doubt that the Mexican government will employ such measures as are required by that treaty and by justice.

In reply, I have the honor to inform your excellency that, through the extra-official information the government had received of the facts, it had already called by telegraph for a report from the military commander at Matamoras; and now, by virtue of your excellency’s note, the proper instructions are given to the war department to send immediate orders to the said military commander to proceed at once, without omitting to render the report already called for, to arrest Hamilton and hold him in safe custody at all hazards, until, after communication with the American authorities in Texas, the extradition may be effected in view of all the requisites of the treaty and of justice.

I remain, with the greatest respect, your excellency’s obedient servant,