to Mr. Blaine.
Vienna, July 2, 1881. (Received July 16.)
Sir: I have the honor to acknowledge the receipt of your dispatch No. 2, and of the accompanying report, embodying the results of an examination had as to the truth or untruth of the stories that American pork was largely tainted with disease. Other copies, under separate cover, have since been received. In accordance with the wishes of the [Page 57] Department, I have taken immediate action to give the gratifying results of this examination the widest circulation. I sent to the minister of foreign affairs a communication, in which I stated the results of the Department’s investigation, and made an earnest request for an abandonment or very material modification of the oppressive measures which have been adopted in Austria-Hungary with regard to the American pork-trade.
I transmit herewith a full copy of this communication and beg leave to call the Secretary’s attention to a few considerations which influenced me in drafting it.
I deemed it wise to recall the history of my predecessor’s efforts to anticipate and prevent any action by His Majesty’s Government. This recapitulation seemed valuable, as bringing into a single paper, for the convenience of all, the whole case as it stands to-day, and still more valuable as forcing the attention of the minister to the fact that the results of the examination strangely confirmed all the representations Mr. Kasson had made of his individual knowledge and belief.
I thought this history would also show with what zeal we had labored to escape from threatened injustice, and with what patience, under confidence of final redress, we bore the injustice when inflicted. Attention was also called to the spirit, the methods, and the results of the investigation, seriatim—the value of the conclusions depending so much upon the impartial and thorough search for the facts from which they are logically deduced.
The declarations of the Department as to the spirit of fairness and impartiality in which the investigation was inaugurated, were so frank and bold that I had no hesitation in repeating this assurance in the strongest terms; and the processes of the examination were so wise, comprehensive, and searching, that it was a pleasure to call them to attention. The results I endeavored to sum briefly and clearly, and, in sending them copies of the report, challenged them to find these results other than those properly deduced from the evidence accompanying them. Nor did I neglect to call attention to the gratifying action of the Belgian and Swiss Governments—taking care, as I was without official information, to qualify the assurance in the case of Switzerland.
In conclusion I called attention again to the patience we had shown in bearing an unnecessary restriction to our trade, to the quiet energy and transparent good faith in which the investigation was conducted, and to our exhibition of entire confidence in His Majesty’s Government’s readiness to undo the wrong, so soon as convinced that its view of the facts was incorrect, by refusing, except by allusion as a necessary pleading to save future rights, to urge the unpleasant charge that the restriction complained of was a gross violation of the fifth article of our treaty of commerce of 1829.
I hope the honorable Secretary will not be displeased with the position I have taken and the manner in which I have stated it; and if he shall find that any expressions in the communication to His Majesty’s minister exhibit less than diplomatic indifference, that he will consider how inadequately they represent the impatience with which one bears restrictions upon trade so harmful and yet so needless.
I have, &c.,