No. 59.

Mr. Hall to Mr. Bayard.

No. 325.]

Sir: I respectfully invite your attention to the accompanying copy of a letter from Mr. T. S. Leverich, special agent of the Pacific Mail Steamship Company, and of one addressed to President Barrios by Mr. Batres, minister from Guatemala to the United States.

These letters report an attempt on the part of the Salvadorian authorities at La Libertad to force the captain of the Pacific Mail steamer Granada to give up certain of his passengers, Señor Batres among them.

It would appear that it having become known that a boat and a certain sum of money, to be used for political purposes in Honduras, were on board the Granada and bound for Amapala, the comandante endeavored to compel Captain Connolly not only to give up the boat and crew of five men, but also the Guatemalan minister to Washington, Señor Antonio Batres, or to pledge himself not to touch at Amapala, threatening him and refusing to give him his clearance unless he should comply. This the captain declined to do, and threatened to use his revolver.

In face of this determined attitude a compromise was made, and the captain agreed to communicate with Captain Dow, the agent at Panama, on which promise he was allowed to proceed. At the same time President Zaldivar telegraphed me requesting that the captain be instructed to return the men to San José de Guatemala, in order to avoid an act of hostility being committed against his Government. I did not consider it necessary, however, to comply with this request.

The Government of Salvador, I would add, makes continual use of these steamers for the transport of munitions of war; and the Honduras [Page 89] lately brought from Corinto 33 boxes of arms and 130 cases of cartridges consigned to Dr. Zaldivar at La Libertad.

The other Republics also do not hesitate to avail themselves of them, and the same steamer Honduras carried from Punta Arenas (Costa Rica) to Corinto 57 boxes of arms and accouterments consigned to the Nicaraguan Government.

I am, &c.,

[Inclosure 1 in No. 325.]

Mr. Leverich to Mr. Hall.

Dear Sir: Referring to our conversation of this evening, I would state that Captain Connolly informed me at La Libertad that on his return to Acajutla from America, Mr. Noltenius, this company’s agent there, refused to give him his clearance unless he would agree to proceed direct from La Libertad to Punta Arenas and not deviate from his voyage by going to Amapala, and requested him to sign a document to that effect to satisfy the comandante of the port. This Captain Connolly positively refused to do, when Mr. Noltenius told him the comandante with six soldiers was outside the door and that he could not go on board his ship. The captain braced himself against the wall, and said he had a six-shooter with him and that he was a dead-sure shot; that he would shoot him (Noltenius) first, the comandante next and then four soldiers, and by that time the others would have run; besides he had plenty more cartridges with him. This argument had the effect of cooling Mr. Noltenius’ ardor, and the captain finally consented to communicate with Captain Dow, Panama, by cable, from La Libertad, on which promise the agent gave him his clearance.

This is the sum and substance of the affair as related to me by Captain Connolly.

I am, &c.,

Special Agent Pacific Mail Steamship Company.
[Inclosure 2 in No. 325.—Translation.]

Señor Batres to President Barrios.

Sir: Last night the captain of the steamer called me to inform me that the sending of the money to Amapala was well known in Salvador, and that the comandante of the port of La Libertad, where we are now, had exacted the giving up of the boat, of its crew, and of Ubico and myself as revolutionists, to which said captain refused. Then they wished to make him sign a document in which he promised on his word of honor not to carry out the agreement made with Don Delpino, because it violated the laws of neutrality, which document he also refused to sign. Then the agent of the company threatened to keep him prisoner, and that permission to continue his voyage would not be given him, to which the captain replied that he would kill six men with his revolver before such a thing should take place. The said captain showed himself very much angered, and has just received a long protest from Don Pedro Melendez, whom he disembarked yesterday at Acajutla.

In this protest they tell him that he himself confessed having made the agreement with Minister Sanchez for $1,000. I told the captain that as yet there had been no declaration of war on which grounds it could be protested that neutrality must be maintained, and I used many other arguments. They returned to request that we be given up and the captain telegraphed to Captain Dow and to New York.

I think there will be no further news, but it might well happen that, owing to circumstances, Ubico could not disembark in Amapala.

Among many lies which are circulated in the port and through Salvador, they say that the Government of the United States has sent a vessel of war to San José de Guatemala, and that Amapala is occupied by the Nicaraguan troops.

Not having further news, I am, &c.,

[Page 90]
[Inclosure 3 in No. 325.—Translation.]

President Zaldivar to Mr. Hall.

Minister Hall: The steamer Granada has on board a boat, five sailors, and hostile elements for disembarkation at Amapala. The captain allows that he agreed to change his regular route on this account for $1,000, which Minister Delfirio Sanchez offered him. I beg you to give orders that he transship them and their boat and elements, in order that they return to San José de Guatemala, thus avoiding that this act of hostility be committed against this Government, without detriment to the protest which this Government will make.

Yours, &c.,