to Mr. Kilpatrick
Washington , November 30, 1881.
Sir: You have already been made acquainted by my No. 13, of the 22d instant, with the determination of this government to send a special mission to South America for the purpose of adjusting whatever questions growing out of the contest between Chili and Peru and Bolivia may affect the relation of the United States to the three belligerent powers, or conduce to the restoration of good understanding among them.
I have now to inform you that William Henry Trescot, esquire, of South Carolina, has been commissioned as special envoy, with the rank of minister plenipotentiary, to the republics of Chili, Peru, and Bolivia and will forthwith set out on his mission.
The commission which Mr. Trescot receives will not supersede the ordinary duties of yourself and your colleagues at Lima and La Paz; but all communications and negotiations connected with the settlement of the pending difficulties between Chili, Peru, and Bolivia, so far as this government may deem it judicious to take action, will be transferred to Mr. Trescot’s charge.
Under the instructions which have been given to Mr. Trescot, he will place himself in direct communication with the several governments to which he is thus specially accredited. It is, however, expected that he [Page 142] will learn from you and your colleagues the exact condition of existing politicial relations, and receive such suggestions as your recent experience may enable you to submit for his consideration. The action he may take, however, must be decided upon his own responsibility, and in the exercise of his independent authority.
Mr. Trescot will be accompanied on this important mission by the Third Assistant Secretary of State. As it may be necessary to consult the representatives of the United States in Chili, Peru, and Bolivia at the same time, or to conduct a simultaneous negotiation with those governments, Mr. Trescot is empowered by the President of the United States to authorize Mr. Walker Blaine to represent the United States at any point where this necessity may occur.
I am, sir, your obedient servant,