to Mr. Evarts.
Vienna, February 18, 1879. (Received March. 5.)
Sir: The Austro-Hungarian Bank, a national institution, has accumulated a large and troublesome mass of silver in its vaults. It desires to be relieved of it. For some weeks past, owing to the relative discredit of silver, the silver florin has been slipped into circulation from the hands which had heretofore hoarded it. But there appeared to be no eagerness for it on the part of the people; and they, as soon as the fact of the equivalent value of the paper was firmly established, seemed to prefer the paper as more convenient. The bank has therefore sought the aid of the government, and has put at the disposition of the Austrian and Hungarian ministers the sum of 10,000,000 of silver florins to hasten the surrender of the one-florin paper notes, for which they desire to substitute the silver piece. An amount up to 10,000 florins is offered to any one applicant in-exchange for the paper.
I have, &c.,