No. 480.

Mr. Richmond to Mr. Frelinghuysen.

No. 18.]

Sir: I have the honor to acknowledge the receipt of instruction No. 17, dated January 27, 1885, relating to the restrictions placed upon missionary work in East Africa, and beg to report that I have addressed a note on the subject to the minister of foreign affairs. I inclose a copy of the note for the information of Mr. Judson Smith, should the Department think it worth while to furnish it.

In addition to the note I propose having a personal interview with the minister of foreign affairs on the 18th instant, in order to furnish him with any information he may desire concerning the missionaries.

I am, &c.,

[Inclosure 1 in No. 18.]

Mr. Richmond to Mr. du Bocage.

Your Excellency: I have the honor to inform your excellency that the American Board of Foreign Missions has secured for the use of certain of its agents the concession of a tract of land in Inhambane Bay, within the jurisdiction of the Portuguese Government at Mozambique, and lying in close proximity to a population of over 100,000 of the natives of the soil.

The condition of this large number of human beings, untouched by the enlightening influences of civilization, is such as to excite the keenest sympathy and prompt [Page 639] the most painstaking labor of the philanthropist and Christian, and it is the object of the self-denying men who are now making their home in East Africa to teach this benighted people the gentle arts of peace, to impart to them the blessings of knowledge, to lead them to a higher and better life, and make them worthier members of a community of which they form so large a part.

From the attainment of this end, alike advantageous to the natives and the Government under which they live, the agents of the Board of Missions are at present withheld by certain regulations of the Government of Mozambique, which restrict their ministrations to the natives employed on their own (the missionaries’) land, while the vast area of ignorance and barbarism around them must be left uncared for.

In presenting this subject to the attention of your excellency, it is with the full confidence that the enlightened and liberal Government of his Most Faithful Majesty, recognizing the importance of enlisting in its interest so valuable an influence in the improvement of its subjects as that which now offers itself, will cause to be repealed regulations which now hamper its usefulness, and that thus the African territory under Portuguese dominion may be thrown open, as are all other lands, to those whose only mission it is to spread peace and good will among their fellow men.

I avail, &c.,

[Inclosure 2 in No. 18.]

Mr. Richmond to Mr. Smith.

Dear Sir: Your letter of the 17th ultimo, relating to the difficulties encountered by your missionaries in East Africa, was transmitted to me by the Department of State, accompanied by an instruction directing me to use every proper means to advance your views, and I now beg to inform you that I have addressed a note to the minister of foreign affairs on the subject, which will be followed by a personal interview on the 18th instant. The result, I trust, will be satisfactory to you.

Any services of mine during the brief remainder of my term of office, which will in any way aid the noble work of your missionaries, will always be gladly placed at your disposal.

I am, &c.,