No. 18.
Mr. Bayard to Mr. Tree.

No. 41.]

Sir: I transmit to you herewith a copy of a letter* which has been addressed to this Department by Mr. D. W. Ostrander, of Clintondale, N. Y., in relation to an estate of $400,000 said to have been left about one hundred years ago by one Hannah Rouk, in Belgium.

This is the first letter which this Department has received from claimants in regard to this estate; but, judging from past experience, it is probable that inquiries from all quarters will soon pour in from heirs to the alleged estate. I will thank you to make inquiries in the proper quarter with a view to ascertain, if practicable, whether the alleged estate has any existence. In the same connection it would be desirable to have a report as to the disposition made of unclaimed estates in Belgium, and as to the statutes of limitation applicable to such matters.

Should the Department continue to receive inquiries in relation to the Rouk estate, it will probably be necessary to issue a circular in relation to the subject, hence it is desirable that your report should be furnished as soon as practicable.

I am, sir, &c.,

  1. Inclosure not published.