No. 4.
Mr. Hanna to Mr. Bayard.

No. 65.]

Sir: I have the honor to transmit herewith in inclosures (1 and 2) a copy of an unofficial correspondence recently held by our legation with the minister of foreign affairs of this Government in relation to a line of steamships which a number of enterprising citizens of the United States propose to operate between New York and Buenos Ayres.

Some time in September last Mr. W. P. Tisdel, representing a United States line of steamships, asked to be presented to his excellency the minister of foreign affairs of this Government, Dr. Don N. Quirno Costa, that he might ascertain what, if anything, his Government would be willing to do in the matter of putting on a line of ships “to run direct between New York and Buenos Ayres, without stops along the Brazilian coast.”

It seemed to me to be a very desirable result to be reached by our people, and the presentation of Mr. Tisdel in an unofficial way was accordingly made. His reception was very cordial, but in consequence of the sudden appearance of cholera here, and its overshadowing importance in all the departments of this Government, the progress made in the negotiations was for a time much retarded. His proposition to the Government was substantially as follows:

To put on a monthly line of ships to ply between the United States and Buenos Ayres, and to make no stops on the voyage south of the equator. His offer was to perform this service for $100,000, Argentine gold, per annum, making twelve trips a year at $8,333.33⅓ each, performing the voyage without accidents beyond reasonable control in twenty-five days from New York to Buenos Ayres. He then succeeded in getting the written guaranty of the foreign office and the minister of the interior that they would favor and aid the enterprise. Recently, however, as will be seen from the annexed correspondence, the whole subject was discussed at a cabinet meeting, receiving the sanction of the President and all the ministers. This makes a finality of it, so far as this Government is concerned, and you will see the minister of the interior is authorized to pay $10,000 per trip, Argentine gold, which is worth about 3½ per cent, less than our standard. It is to be hoped the contract will be closed at once.

I have, etc.,

Bayless W. Hanna.
[Inclosure 1 in No. 65.]

Mr. Costa to Mr. Hanna.

The minister of foreign affairs of the Argentine Republic sends friendly greetings to his excellency, the minister resident of the United States, and has the satisfaction, in view of his deep personal interest in the matter, to inform him that the President of the Republic, at a recent cabinet meeting, presented for its consideration the pending project of Mr. W. P. Tisdel relative to a direct line of steamers from New York to Buenos Ayres, accepting it in general terms, and authorizing the minister of the interior to grant said line a subsidy not to exceed $1(000, Argentine gold, per month, the subsidy to continue for ten years. On the opening of Congress the President will submit the agreement to be made with the company represented by Mr. Tisdel, asking its approval.

[Page 7]
[Inclosure 2 in No. 65.]

Mr. Hanna to Mr. Costa.

Mr. Minister:

Your esteemed communication of yesterday informing this legation of the action of His Excellency the President of the Argentine Republic, at a late cabinet meeting of his distinguished ministers, accepting the proposition of a United States steamship company, as represented by Mr. W. P. Tisdel, to put a line of vessels to be operated between New. York and Buenos Ayres directly, has given me very great satisfaction.

This determination on the part of your enlightened Government not only furnishes additional proof of its broad and liberal spirit, but also of its undoubted goodwill towards the Government and people of the United States, and its desire to engage in freer and more enlarged commercial relations with them. Reciprocity is the gateway of our success, and it can and will be opened at last.

The United States and the Argentine Republic, one in the north and the other in the south of this vast continent, constructed on the same foundations, both free republics, which have won the respect of the civilized world for their achievements in the liberal education of the people, their triumphs in the arts of peace, and their combined and persistent efforts to elevate the standard of “all the governments of the people, by the people, and for the people,” are thus united by a bond which must keep them close together, not only in respect, faith, and sympathy, but also in commercial reciprocity, the best and fullest expression of such decided affinities.

I have no doubt whatever that when our two countries have a better mail service, and more rapid and reliable methods of communication a new era will dawn upon us, and that every political barrier which now hinders our progress will be removed by mutual popular concessions, and that we will be in trade what we are in sentiment, essentially bound up together in the struggle and triumphs of a common destiny.

Allow me again to renew, etc.,

Bayless W. Hanna.