to Mr. Merrill.
Washington , October 15, 1886.
Sir: The 16th of November proximo being the fiftieth anniversary of the birth of His Majesty King Kalakaua, offers a pleasant and fitting opportunity for the manifestation of courtesy and good-will, of which the President desires to avail himself.[Page 529]
I am, therefore, directed by the President to instruct you to present his most cordial felicitations to His Majesty the King on the attainment of his fiftieth year, and to make expression on behalf of the Government and people of the United States of their steady friendship and hopes for the maintenance and development of close and mutually beneficial relations between the two countries.
An instruction has been sent to Mr. Bates, who was lately sent to the Samoan Islands and Tonga on a special agency, and who is now about to return to the United States, directing that if his movements bring him to Honolulu by the 16th November, he shall associate himself with you in conveying the President’s friendly message to His Majesty. Should Mr. Bates’s plans of travel permit him to execute this instruction, you will present him to the Hawaiian minister for foreign affairs as a special agent for the purpose mentioned, and arrange to have him join with you in the formalities of the occasion.
The late day at which the Department has received information of the public celebration of the approaching anniversary prevents the detail of a vessel of war to make a ceremonial visit to Honolulu. If, however, the Mohican, on which Mr. Bates may be a passenger homeward, should touch at Honolulu in season, you will endeavor to arrange with Captain Day for the participation of our naval flag in the anniversary ceremonies, including the firing of a royal salute and the presentation of the officers of the vessel to His Majesty.
I am, &c.,