Thornton to Mr. Evarts.
Washington, February 3, 1879.
(Received February 4.)
Sir: In compliance with an instruction which I have
received from the Marquis of Salisbury, I have the honor to inclose copy of
a correspondence between Sir J. Stokes and Monsieur C. de Lesseps, from
which it will be seen that the Suez Canal Company have formally undertaken
to extend to shipping under all flags the benefit of the arrangements in
regard to tonnage measurement recently made with the company on the part of
I have the honor to be, with the highest consideration, sir, your obedient
[Inclosure in Mr. Thornton’s dispatch of
February 3, 1879.]
Sir J. Stokes to
M. de Lesseps.
Mr. President: In the replies of the various
maritime governments to the communications addressed to them by the
government of Her Britannic Majesty, the object of which was to induce
them to accept the arrangement agreed upon between us on the 8th of
January, and accepted by the board of management on the 12th of March
last, the question is asked by almost all of them whether the
interpretation given to the powers of examining the papers of vessels,
or their certificates, in the correspondence which took place between
the company and the English managers under date of the 6th, 16th, and
19th of February, extends to all flags.
It is true that that correspondence had reference to English vessels
only; hut, considering that the terms of its grant oblige the company to
treat all flags on a footing of perfect equality, I feel convinced that
it is your intention to give to every vessel, whatever flag it may
carry, the same interpretation of the paragraph concerning examination
as you have admitted for English vessels.
Before replying in this sense to my government, I shall be happy to
receive an official communication from you authorizing me to give the
Be pleased, &c.,