No. 243.
Mr. Steele to Mr. Bayard.

Sir: Learning by telegraphic news that your consideration of the provincial seizures has been somewhat delayed by the want of documentary evidence, I inclose affidavits this morning received from East-port relative to the schooner Jennie and Julia of that port. They were sent me by a reputable merchant. I am in no way interested in the vessel, nor do I know who are her owners. If there is any service which the members of the American Fishery Union or its officers can render that would be of use in your efforts to obtain redress from Canadian annoyances, they will very cheerfully be at your service.

I am, &c.,

President of the American Fishery Union.
[Inclosure 1.]

Statement of Capt William H. Farris, master of schooner Jennie and Julia, of Eastport.

I, William H. Farris, master of the schooner Jennie and Julia, a vessel of the United States hailing from Eastport, Me., cleared from Eastport on 17th inst., taking out a register, crew list and all papers required for a foreign voyage. I left Eastport at about 4 o’clock, p.m., arriving at Digby, Nova Scotia, at about 10 o’clock of the forenoon of the 18th inst., dropping anchor in Digby Harbor. I immediately went ashore and reported to United States Consular Agent Stewart, and delivered all my papers to him. After looking over the papers Mr. Stewart informed me that he did not think he could do anything for me, except if my vessel was seized or cast away, he could send myself and crew home. He further said that he did not know whether he was reappointed under this new administration or not.

I then took my papers from the consul and went to the custom-house and found the door locked. Turning from the door I met the collector, Veits, and his son coming to the office. He asked if I was Captain Farris. I answered that I was. He said, “What are you here for—bait?” I answered, “I am here for fresh herring.” He said, “You can’t have any.” I then asked him to look at my papers. He examined them and asked what I had this kind of a register for. I answered, “After stating to the collector at Eastport what I wanted to do, he gave me these papers as the proper ones.” The collector, Mr. Veits, then said, “You can’t buy fresh herring here for any purpose.”

I said to him that I had two smoke-houses at home empty, and I would like to buy fresh herring to fill them up. He answered, “You cannot buy herring for any purpose.”

I then said to him, “If I can’t buy herring I will take my papers and go home”; and the collector said, “No; wait till afternoon and then I will let you know.”

At about 3 o’clock I went to the custom-house again, when the collector told me that he had telegraphed to headquarters, but had received no answer.

About 7 o’clock p.m. the collector informed me that he could allow me to enter my vessel but could not give a clearance. I then said to him, “If I buy one barrel of fresh herring I am liable to seizure” and the collector answered, “Yes.”

I then went on board my vessel and started for home.

Master Schooner Jennie and Julia.

Before me.
[l. s.]
Notary Public.
[Page 499]
[Inclosure 2.]

Statement of Arthur Farris, mate to the schooner Jennie and Julia.

The Jennie and Julia sailed from Eastport, May 17, for Digby, N. S., arriving there about 10 o’clock of the morning of the 18th. Immediately after dropping anchor, the captain went on shore. About half an hour after a steam tug came alongside, and a man on board, whom I afterwards learned was the collector of the port of Digby, took out a note-book and wrote something in it; then threw a line aboard, to which I paid no attention. He then asked, “What are you doing here?” I answered, “We are here to buy herring.” He then asked me, if I did not know we were violating the law. I answered, “No, I think not.” He then asked me if I did not know we were liable to seizure. I then told him that we were under register, and had cleared for Digby, to return to Eastport when we left Digby. He then asked if I was captain. I told him no, the captain had gone ashore to the custom-house. He then asked me what we were doing with fishing-gear on deck. I told him to ask the captain and he would tell him. The collector then said, “I warn you not to buy herring.”


[l. s.]
Notary Public.

I, George S. Farris, state that I am one of the crew of the schooner Jennie and Julia, and was present during the conversation between the collector of the port of Digby and the mate of the Jennie and Julia, and state that the foregoing affidavit of the mate is correct.


Notary Public.