Mr. Bassett to Mr. Fish.
Port au Prince, September 21, 1875. (Received October 11.)
Sir: I have the honor to state that, on Friday morning the 10th instant, there entered into this harbor the two new war-steamers recently built at Philadelphia under the superintendence of the Haytian Admiral Léon Déjoie for this government, and called respectively the “St. Michel” and the “1804.” The former is bark-rigged, has seven hundred tons of measurement, and is to carry six thirty-pound Parrot rifles and one eleven-inch Dahlgren pivot-gun, with officers and crew to the number of one hundred. The latter of the vessels is brig-rigged, has six hundred tons of measurement, and is to carry four thirty-pound Parrot rifles and one one-hundred Parrot pivot-rifle, with officers and men to the number of about one hundred also. Both these steamers left Philadelphia unarmed, and made the passage from that port to this in seven days. They are to take, or have already taken, their armaments from the Haytian war-steamer “Mont Organisé,” formerly the “Florida,” now lying in the harbor here disabled and worn out, and having on board, besides her own, the guns once carried by the “Pequot,” afterward called “LaTer-reur,” and by the “Salnave,” formerly known as the “Maratanza.” The officers and crews of both the “St. Michel” and the “1804” are exclusively Haytians, with the exception of the two chief engineers, of whom one is an American and the other a native of St. Thomas. These two ships constitute the whole naval force of this government.
I am, &c.,