No. 657.
Mr. Blaine to Mr. Fairchild.

No. 197.]

Sir: Referring to instruction No. 195, of the 2d instant, relative to the charges on cargo required by the Spanish consul-general at New York, I inclose a copy of a letter from Messrs. Nutter, Kimball & Co., of Portland, Me., in reference to like exactions by the consular officers of His Majesty’s Government.

I am, &c.,

JAMES G. BLAINE.
[Inclosure in No. 197.]

Nutter, Kimball & Co. to Mr. Blaine .

Dear Sir: We take the liberty to call your attention to the excessive charges recently imposed by the Spanish Government upon all American vessels clearing from the United States for the Island of Cuba.

Under the new regulations all vessels, without regard to their size, are obliged to pay the Spanish cousul the sum of $23, and $8 additional for the first 50 tons of freight [Page 1066] carried, and 10 cents per ton additional for all in excess of 50 tons. Take, for example, a vessel carrying 700 tons. She would pay, to start with—

Lump sum of $23 00
First 50 tons of freight 8 00
Balance, 650 tons of freight, at 10 cents 65 00
96 00

This is in addition to the tonnage dues in Cuba of $1.35 per ton. Then, if the vessel’s manifest does not show very nearly the exact weight of cargo, the vessel is fined from $100 to $300, and in some cases a larger amount. These charges are so excessive that it is difficult to find vessels that are willing to entertain Cuba business so long as they can find anything else to do, and is operating very seriously against exportations from this country.

We call your attention to these matters believing them to be of such importance that you will, if possible, take measures to secure a modification of the present arbitrary rules of the Spanish Government.

Respectfully, &c.,

NUTTER, KIMBALL & CO.
We concur with the above statements.
PHINNEY & JACKSON.

GEO. S. HUNT & CO.
CHASE, LEAVITT & CO.
J. S. WINSLOW & CO.
ISAAC EMERY.