No. 171.

Mr. Bayard to Mr. Scruggs.

No. 72.]

Sir: Your dispatch No. 240, of the 3d ultimo, has been received.

Your reported action in regard to the Colombian decree whereunder consignees who paid import duties to the insurgents who lately held ports of entry must pay over again to the Colombian Government, with [Page 230] 50 per cent, added in case of failure to do so, is approved, because coinciding with the representations made to the Colombian minister in Washington when the decree was known.

I send you herewith copy of my note of June 1, 1885,* to Mr. Becerra, on the subject, from which you will see that you had independently reached almost identical conclusions as to the objectionable character of the decree, and the indisposition of this Government to recognize any act whereby the Government of Colombia might assume to apply jurisdictional rights in respect of places over which it had no power.

The substance of my note to Mr. Becerra was communicated to Mr. Dawson, June 10, 1885. Communication with Bogota being then interrupted, no attempt was made to manifest through the legation the views of this Government.

I learn with pleasure from your postscript that the decree in question will be revoked.

I am, &c.,

  1. For Inclosure, see document No. 210, page 269.