Papers Relating to the Foreign Relations of the United States, Transmitted to Congress, With the Annual Message of the President, December 1, 1879
Mr. Everett to Mr. Evarts.
Berlin, May 19, 1879. (Received June 11.)
Sir: I have the honor to inclose a copy of the treaty between Germany and the Samoan Islands, signed the 24th January, 1879. It is, taken from the Norddeutche Allgemeine Zeitung, and may consequently be assumed to be essentially correct, but, if possible, I will obtain an official copy.
I have, &c.,
Treaty between Germany and Samoa.
Treaty of friendship between His Majesty the Emperor of Germany and King of Prussia, &c., &c., in the name of the German Empire, and their excellencies the members of the Taimua, in the name of the Government of Samoa.
His Majesty the Emperor of Germany and King of Prussia, &c., &c., in the name of the German Empire of the one part, and their excellencies the members of the Taimua, in the name of the Government of Samoa, of the other part, led by the desire to forward their friendly relations and secure their mutual interests, have concluded to enter into a treaty of friendship.
To this end they have appointed their plenipotentiaries, viz:
His Majesty the Emperor of Germany and King of Prussia, &c., &c., his imperial 1 captain, Karl Bartholomäns von Werner, commander of His Majesty’s corvette Ariadne, knight of the order of the crown, third class, and of the order of the red eagle, fourth class, and his imperial consul for the islands of Samoa and Tonga, Theodor August Ludwig Weber, and their excellencies the member of the Taimua, the member of the Taimua Tuia, and the member of the Taimua Lemana, and the under secretary of state, Meisake, who, after a mutual communication of their authority, found to be in good and proper form, have agreed upon the following articles:
Article I. There shall be peace and perpetual friendship between the German Government, [Page 382] on the one part, and Samoa on the other part, as well as between their respective subjects without distinction of persons or places.
Art. II. The subjects of both of the contracting parties shall receive the fullest and continued protection of their persons and property in both countries, and further, the Germans in Samoa, and the Samoans in Germany, shall be exempted from all war contributions, military requisitions, or military services, and especially the Germans in Samoa from having their houses, lands, and plantations occupied by belligerent parties.
Art. III. Germans sojourning in Samoa and Samoans sojourning in Germany shall enjoy complete liberty of conscience, and shall in no way be disturbed or molested on account of their faith or on account of the exercise of their religious ceremonies within their houses or churches. Subjects of the contracting parties shall have the right to inter their countrymen, dying in Germany or the Samoan Islands, in places acquired and prepared for such purposes, and shall in no way be molested in the exercise of their church or funeral rites, nor shall their graves under any pretext be injured or destroyed. In all these cases the Samoans in Germany shall be subject to the laws and regulations of the country, and shall conform to the customs and usages as well as observe religious decorum. Germans in Samoa shall be held subject to such laws and regulations as may hereafter be agreed upon between the contracting parties. They shall in the meantime do nothing in violation of the laws and regulations of their own country.
Art. IV. German subjects shall have unrestricted liberty of commerce within the entire jurisdiction of Samoa. They shall freely enter all places, ports, and waters of Samoa, with their ships and cargoes of every description, to sell, land, or store their ladings, as well as to ship and send away domestic productions or other objects of any nature belonging to them. German citizens shall not be subject to any duties or restrictions upon their incoming or outgoing ships or cargoes, nor for the carrying on of traffic, as long as such have not been agreed upon between the contracting parties. German citizens, however, shall, in such cases, enjoy the same rights and privileges in Samoa as the Samoans or the subjects of the most favored nation.
Art. V. German warships shall be allowed to enter the harbor of Saluafata, to anchor, remain, take in provisions, and to repair; and the German Government shall be free to erect such stations in each port for the use of German ships of war and their crews as may seem necessary.
The Samoan Government farther allows the German Government to erect buildings on the shores of said harbor of Saluafata for the purpose of storing coal or any other requisites for the use of German war-ships and their crews.
The German Government shall be further permitted to hoist the German flag upon the shores where such stations have been erected. This shall, however, in no way tend to interfere with or impair the supreme authority of the Samoan Government over the harbor of Saluafata. On the other hand, the Government of Samoa promises to do nothing whereby the privileges accorded the German Government in this article may be impaired or rendered worthless. Nor shall the privileges accorded the German Government in this article prevent war-ships or trading vessels of other nations, to which the Samoan Government has opened its ports, from entering the harbor of Saluafata. Nevertheless, the Samoan Government shall not grant to other nations the same rights and privileges regarding this harbor and its snores as are accorded the German Government.
German war-ships shall also be at liberty to enter any other port, place, or water, under the jurisdiction of Samoa, for the purpose of anchoring, shipping provisions, remaining, or undergoing repairs, subject to laws which may yet be agreed upon between the contracting parties. And the Samoan Government hereby promises further not to accord to any other nation, in any respect, privileges not accorded the German Government, with regard to the harbor of Apia and its shores, but that the German Government shall enjoy equal privileges with other nations.
Art. VI. Citizens of both the contracting parties shall have full liberty to travel, reside, traffic, purchase, or lease lands, cultivate for their use, build houses, stores, or shops thereon, within the territories of the contracting parties. In such cases the Samoans in Germany shall be subject to the laws and regulations of the country; shall meet the same requirements, pay the same taxes, imposts, contributions, as its citizens. In like manner the Germans in Samoa shall conform to the laws and regulations; shall pay such taxes and imposts to the Samoan Government as may hereafter be decided upon between the parties to this treaty. German citizens in Samoa shall always enjoy the same rights and privileges as Samoans or the subjects of the most favored nation. The Samoan Government does hereby especially guarantee to German subjects the peaceable possession of all lands which they have heretofore purchased in Samoa, in legal form, and under existing laws and customs, and secure them against any and all future claims. German citizens shall therefore be permitted to utilize such land purchased from Samoans in Samoa undisturbed; to establish plantations thereon to employ all necessary labor for this purpose, as well as for their wharves, workshops, and houses.[Page 383]
Art. VII. The determination of the jurisdiction to which German subjects residing in Samoa are amenable, in all legal disputes arising among themselves, as well as crimes and offenses committed among themselves, is left to the regulation and discretion of the German Government. However, the regulation of the jurisdiction and procedure respecting legal disputes between German resident and transient citizens, living in Samoa, on the one side, and Samoans on the other, as well as with regard to crimes and offenses committed by citizens of one of the treating governments against the citizens of the other, including also the necessary regulations for the infliction of punishment upon convicted persons, and the compulsory attendance of witnesses in judicial proceedings, is reserved for consideration between the contracting parties. In the mean while, and until such regulations shall have been agreed upon between the contracting parties, all legal disputes arising between German citizens in Samoa and Samoans shall be decided, as has heretofore been customary, before the German consul, or his representative, in conjunction with an officer of the Samoan Government.
Art. VIII. All laws and regulations to which German resident and transient citizens are to conform, as well as the payment of taxes and duties levied by the Samoan Government: also the means to secure the proper observance of such laws and regulations on the part of German citizens in Samoa, shall be discussed between the German consul or other person authorized by the German Government with officers of the Samoan Government. Yet all such laws and measures as may be discussed and agreed upon between the said officers of the contracting parties shall not be valid until they have received the sanction of the German Government. Any agreements, however, which may have been entered into between the officers of the contracting parties regarding municipal ordinances, police quarantine, and Apia harbor regulations, as well as with regard to the prohibition or regulation of the sale of, or trading in spirits or intoxicating liquors, to Samoans or natives of other islands in the Pacific Ocean, through Germans, shall immediately be placed under the supervision of German subjects, so long, at least, as the German Government has not refused the confirmation. German citizens shall in the mean while, and in all these cases, enjoy the same rights and privileges as the Samoans, or the subjects of the most favored nation in Samoa, and shall be subject to no laws and measures by which a discrimination is made against them, as compared with the subjects of other nations.
Art. IX. Besides the different agreements contained in the foregoing articles, the regulation of civil affairs and of other relations not yet discussed, concerning resident and transient citizens of one of the contracting parties during their stay in the territory of the other, as also the termination of the rights, powers and duties of the respective consular officers and other unsettled questions respecting commerce, is reserved for mutual agreement between the contracting parties.
Art. X. The Government of Samoa promises not to permit any monopoly, indemnities, or special privileges within its jurisdiction injurious to German commerce, or the flag and the citizens of the German Empire.
Art. XI. The Government of Samoa promises that the German Government shall be accorded, all the rights and privileges enumerated in the foregoing articles, as well as granted the same rights as are granted to the most favored nation, or as may yet be granted them in the future.
Art. XII. The present treaty shall go into force and be valid from the day it has been signed, provided, however, that the same shall be null and void if the ratification thereof on the part of the German Government shall not have followed within the period of twenty-four months from the date of signing.
Art. XIII. The present treaty, consisting of thirteen articles, shall be ratified, and the ratification thereof shall be exchanged at Apia, as soon as possible. The ratification, however, on the part of the Samoan Government shall immediately follow the signing of this treaty, and the records of it be placed in the care of the German consul at Apia until the arrival of the ratification hereof from the German Government, with this proviso, that the record of the ratification of the Samoan Government shall be returned to it in case the German Government shall not ratify said treaty within the time specified.
In witness whereof the respective plenipotentiaries have signed and sealed the present treaty in duplicate.