No. 11.
Mr. Thorington to Mr. Evarts.

No. 210.]

Sir: For further reply to your dispatch of date July 13, ultimo, I herewith inclose an article taken from the Star and Herald, of Panama, marked “Exhibit 1,” as showing the import into Gautemala, one of the Central American States on the Pacific Coast, whose trade by reason of her proximity to the United States should make our ports her market for the articles mentioned. The article, and the facts contained therein, are well worth the attention of our capitalists engaged in exporting home products and merchandise.

It seems to me it would pay our merchant princes and exporters to [Page 32]see that agents are placed at such ports where interest would seem to demand who would take more than an ordinary interest in laying before the inspector at these points samples of goods and articles of merchandise peculiar to our country, for inspection, with prices and cost of delivery. If no better channel could be adopted, why not require your consular and diplomatic officers at their respective ports, other interests being considered, to act in the premises?

I have made arrangements with the officials of the Panama Railroad and other parties in possession of the facts, and at an early day hope to lay the same before you for a similar statement to the one now furnished, exhibiting all goods and merchandise in transit going to the United States and other countries, that you may see at a glance the immensity of this commerce and our disparagement in this comparison and the advantage we have, and yet not availing ourselves of that advantage.

Hoping, sir, I am not trespassing upon the license granted in replying to your dispatch,

I am, &c.,


Exhibit 1.

guatemalan imports.

Our readers will find published below a statement of the imports of the republic of Guatemala for 1876. From this it will be seen that for the total represented by the original invoices, amounting to $2,264,831.90, Great Britain furnishes about one-half, or $1,125,150.31; France, one-fifth, or $449,537.38; Germany a little more than one-eighth, or $264,288.25; and the United States only about one-ninth, or $245,867.54.

In the statement showing the classification of imported goods, manufactured cotton takes the lead, at $1,006,538.71, followed by woolen goods, $281,247.32; silks, $112,592.35; haberdashery, $80,469.05; linen goods, $67,233.11; boots and shoes, $52,845.37; wine, $52,652.81; flour, $51,398.50; machinery, $48,486.97; hats, $44,674.28; and so on through a list embracing fifty-three classes of articles, the smallest of which is exotic seeds and plants, $236.19. It will be well for our American mercantile friends to study this statement. From it they will learn how insignificant an amount of the total foreign supplies furnished, come from the United States, and may be incited to make a more determined effort to secure a larger share of the growing trade of the leading Central American State. In the matter of cotton and woolen goods especially, which amount in value to more than one-half the entire import, there is no reason why Guatemala should continue to look to Europe for her supplies, while in nearly every other article on the list, American manufacturers should be able to compete successfully with those on the other side of the Atlantic. In a few years, at the present rate of improvement, Central America will furnish a market for tens of millions worth of foreign goods, which should naturally he derived from the Great Republic of the North, and Will be without doubt, if the necessary efforts are made on the part of those most interested. Then instead of furnishing the pitiful sartorial fraction of one-ninth, the United States will be able to head the list.

The following is a classification of the articles imported into Guatemala in 1876, with the cost of each:

[Page 33]
Oil $5,381 44 Sundries $8,922 65
Liquors 12,493 49 Drugs 12,650 16
Cotton goods 1,006,538 71 Swords 597 55
Fire-arms 1,762 52 Large mirrors 2,806 59
Boots and shoes 52,845 37 Block-tin 1,234 17
Cinnamon 11,683 77 Stearine 19,711 94
Carriages 6,239 81 Matches 6,472 18
White wax 7,121 43 Flour 51,398 50
Ale and beer 1,846 36 Iron bars and implements 43,569 87
Sheet-copper 3,074 22 Musical instruments 973 26
Provisions and confectionery 39,369 88 Agricultural and other implements 8,731 93
Glassware 10,785 09
Toys $1,828 46 Fine jewelry $37,694 38
Woolen goods 281,247 32 Hardware 31,872 92
Printed books 14,384 98 Watches and clocks 9,318 55
Cordials 3,894 18 Ready-made clothing 1,921 66
Linen goods 67,233 11 Empty bags 28,145 29
Crockery 10,764 83 Common salt 2,037 40
Machinery 48,486 97 Silk goods 112,592 35
Medicines 16,957 42 Seeds and plants 236 19
Haberdashery 80,469 05 Saddles 1,789 10
Furniture 9,591 76 Hats 44,674 28
Paper of all kinds 29,829 25 Manufactured tobacco 4,135 81
Perfumery 7,312 54 Iron roofs and tubing 10,946 55
Sugar-machinery 2,778 68 Plain glass 5,822 50
Petroleum 2,580 19 Wire 52,651 82
Pianos 5,963 83
Tanned leather 21,459 64 Total 2,264,831 90