No. 393.
Mr. Mathews to Mr. Evarts.

No. 295.]

Sir: I have the honor to acknowledge the receipt of your dispatch No. 132, dated July 2, 1878, together with its accompaniments, relative, to the request of the president and vice-president of the board of delegates of American Israelites, New York, requesting that I should be instructed to inquire into the condition of the Jews in this empire, and to consult for the amelioration of their status, and to take, such steps ‘ toward the accomplishment of the end desired, consistent with my international obligations with this government.

I am happy to state that my relations with this Government of Morocco are such that I can exercise my unofficial friendly offices on behalf of the Israelites in this country with good result when required, as it has been the case lately, when a Jewish family was murdered near Laraiche, and another Israelite near Arzila, and, the town itself menaced by the Kabyles, who were preparing to murder and plunder all the Israelites in the place. Having received a letter to this effect from the elders of the Hebrew community of Arzila, I lost no time in communicating the same personally to the Moorish minister of foreign affairs, who at once dispatched a messenger to the governor of Laraiche, who, on receipt of our letters, immediately ordered a Kaid and fifty soldiers to Arzila, there to protect the Jewish population, who were in great consternation.

The murderers of the Jewish family are now in prison, and the, minister for foreign affairs has assured me that their punishment will be such as to deter others from committing similar acts of violence in future.

I beg to inclose herewith copies of the two letters addressed to me by Mr. M. L. Benshiton, chief of the Israelites of Arzila, requesting my intercession on their behalf, and acknowledging the result of the same.

I shall avail myself of all proper opportunities to accomplish, in the manner you have been pleased to indicate, the ends desired by the board of delegates of American Israelites.

I have, &c.,

[Inclosure 1 in No. 295.]

Mr. Benshiton to Mr. Mathews.

Sir: I have the honor to inform you, with much regret, that yesterday the Moors killed a Hebrew, by the name of David of Jacob Ederhy, quite close to this town, and that all the environs and gardens of this town are infested with thieves and assassins getting ready to enter and plunder the Israelites, who already do not risk to go out of town for fear of being assassinated and robbed. Thus they are prevented from earning their daily bread at the various markets, and consequently their sufferings on these days of famine, sickness, and misery are great.

For several days past these highwaymen and evil-doers have attempted to scale the town walls; also they tried to break its gates; and all this is taking place for the want, of government and police.

In vain we have appealed to the governor of Laraiche for help; and now all the Hebrews of Arzila have come to me to appeal to you, in the name of humanity, that with your influence and good-will you may speak on our behalf with the Moorish Government, and obtain for us some troops that may drive the malefactors away from this neighborhood and protect our lives and properties, now in the most imminent danger; and this act of yours will be a favor which God Almighty will reward you with hi a blessing and much happiness.

I remain, &c.,

[Page 692]
[Inclosure 2 in No. 295.]

Mr. Benshiton to Mr. Mathews.

Sir: I have the honor and great satisfaction to inform you that at nine o’clock this morning 50 soldiers, with their chief, entered this town from Laraiche, sent by the governor of that city for the purpose of defending the lives and property of the Jewish inhabitants of this town, according to your request to the minister of foreign affairs of Morocco.

The inhabitants of Arzila, in the name of whom I have the honor to address you, are full of gratitude toward you for the amiability and prompt attention you have shown in their hour of peril, and implore of the Almighty God that he may reward you with much happiness and prosperity in union of your children, whom may God preserve for infinite years.

I remain, &c.,