Mr. Wallace to Mr. Frelinghuysen .
Constantinople , January 30, 1885. (Received February 16.)
Sir: I have the honor to acknowledge receipt of your dispatch No. 251, touching the sale of books printed at the American Bible House, &c., and beg to say in this connection that previous to the receipt of the dispatch I had been endeavoring to arrange the matter.
The course pursued was to sound the minister of public instruction privately, through Mr. Gargiulo, and ascertain his views and disposition. Much to” my astonishment, he informed the dragoman that he had never sent an order of the kind claimed to have been received from his department by the censor at Erzeroom. You will find the claim of the censor fully described in the inclosure herewith transmitted. This negation of his excellency the minister was confirmed by his secretary.[Page 833]
Thus enlightened, I called upon the minister in person, and at his suggestion agreed to send him an unofficial note explanatory of the several points requiring settlement between the legation and his department. Conformably to the understanding I drafted a communication covering the points, and will send it to him to-day.
I think the probability of effecting an arrangement in the manner disclosed will justify me in withholding a formal note to the Sublime Porte through the minister of foreign affairs in accordance with the views and instructions contained in your dispatch No. 251. In case I fail in the negotiation with the minister of public instruction, my next step will be to carry the matter to the Sublime Porte; then I will base my demand upon the ground you point out, viz, of an international arrangement.
Hoping my course will meet your approval,
I am, &c.,