No. 257.
Mr. Langston to Mr. Evarts.

No. 186.]

Sir: I have the honor to transmit herewith inclosed copies of two dispatches, with translations, and the replies made thereto, addressed to me by the Haytian Government.

These dispatches, according to the request made, were brought by me at once to the attention of the diplomatic corps, and upon its approval the replies returned were made.

The subjects treated in these dispatches are so grave, the attitude assumed by the government so remarkable, and the style and manner adopted by the writer, especially in the closing portions to the dispatch of the 10th instant, so unusual, that it has been deemed prudent to bring them with the replies to the attention of the department.

I am, &c.,

[Inclosure 1 in No. 186.—Translation.]

Mr. Ethéart to Mr. Langston.

Mr. Minister: As you know, I addressed yesterday a circular to the members of the diplomatic corps to ask them the names of the refugees which they had received at their residences, and what disposition they were going to take in that behalf. Not having received any response to my circular I have the honor to ask you to convoke them, and to inform them that the government has decided to embark said refugees upon the English steamer which will leave this port to-day. It is necessary, then, to have an understanding in order that all necessary measures may be taken in the premises.

Be pleased to accept, Mr. Minister, the assurance of my very high consideration.

The secretary of state of foreign relations.

[Page 577]
[Inclosure 2 in No. 186.]

Mr. Langston to Mr. Ethéart.

Sir: I have the honor to state that your dispatch of this date, in which you ask me to convoke the corps diplomatique and inform them that the government has decided to embark the refugees referred to by you in a circular addressed yesterday to them, has been received.

The diplomatic and consular corps have been convoked and the contents of your dispatch made known to them according to your request.

The members of this body have either answered your circular already, as I am assured, or will do so as soon as practicable.

By the way, it appears that several gentlemen who wese present have not received your circular.

I have, &c.,

[Inclosure 3 in No. 186.—Translation.]

Mr. Ethéart to Mr. Langston.

Mr. Minister: I desire to ask you, in the name of my government, to have the goodness to convoke, in the shortest possible time, the diplomatic and consular corps. The English man-of-war Boxer being in the harbor, the government desires that the refugees in the different consulates may be embarked as soon as possible. They may await on board of her the arrival of the royal mail, which comes here to-morrow or the day after to-morrow.

You will be kind enough, Mr. Minister, to consult with the corps over which you preside, as to the proper means of securing this result agreeably to the promise made when the embarkation of these persons on board of the Ailsa was refused. The legations of France and Spain, as is known, alleged as the ground of their refusal to permit said embarkation the fact that they had themselves taken measures to have the refugees placed on board of some vessel, and that they were awaiting, with this view, the arrival of a man-of-war.

This condition being to-day fulfilled by the presence of the Boxer in our waters, and the near arrival of the royal mail, no obstacle can hereafter be opposed to the execution of the promise which has been made us.

I believe it my duty to advise you, Mr. Minister, that if the members of the diplomatic and consular corps neglect this favorable opportunity for the embarkation of the individuals whom they have received at their residences, the government can no longer guarantee the security of the persons who have sought refuge under the protection of the different flags; and it would leave, with reason, the responsibility of the possible consequences of so dangerous a situation with those who have provoked it by their obstinacy.

I avail myself of this occasion, Mr. Minister, to offer you the assurance of my most distinguished consideration.

The secretary of state of foreign affairs.

[Inclosure 4 in No. 186.]

Mr. Langston to Mr. Ethéart.

Sir: I have the honor to acknowledge the receipt of your dispatch, dated this day, and having reference to the embarkation of refugees said to be in the different legations and consulates.

The contents of this dispatch have been brought, according to your request, to the attention of the members of the corps diplomatique et consulaire.

So far as the use of the English man-of-war Boxer is concerned, for any purpose for which your government might need it, you will permit me to suggest that you should correspond with the representative of Her Britannic Majesty.

[Page 578]

I may be permitted to suggest, also, that I apprehend, from information which I have received both directly and indirectly, that any promise made by the representatives of the English and Spanish Governments to yours will be duly observed.

As to your suggestion with regard to not guaranteeing protection in case the refugees referred to by you are not embarked according to your request, I have only to say that responsibility in such case will attach to such party as may be eventually shown to be at fault; it is generally believed, however, that a refugee seeks shelter beneath the flag of a legation or consulate to which he flees because there he finds protection.

I beg to suggest, Mr. Minister, in the most respectful manner, that so far as my colleagues of the corps diplomatique and consulaire are concerned, your use of the French expression “obstination” is, in our judgment, not quite in accordance with diplomatic usage.

I am, &c.,