No. 71.
Mr. Hall to Mr. Bayard.

No. 600.]

Sir: With my No. 477 of the 12th of March last, I transmitted to the Department a translation of the treaty signed in this city on the 12th of September, 1885, between Guatemala, Salvador, and Honduras. I had occasion also to refer to the same treaty in my dispatches No. 478 of the 15th March, and No. 514 of the 7th June last.

The treaty referred to embraces the following subjects: Peace, friendship, union, alliance, extradition, commercial reciprocity, and postal, telegraphic, and monetary union. Nicaragua and Costa Rica were invited [Page 86] at the time to become parties to the treaty, but they found many of its stipulations objectionable and consequently declined.

On the 31st of July last the minister for foreign affairs of Guatemala addressed a circular note to the several Central American Governments, inviting their acceptance of the treaty, with such modifications as would remove the objectionable features, or that they should enter into a new treaty embracing the same objects. The answers of the several Governments were such as to induce the Government of Guatemala to issue another circular note, under date of the 15th ultimo, inviting them to send delegates to a congress of all the states and proposing that it should meet in Guatemala on the 20th January, 1887, for the purpose of discussing and uniting upon a general treaty which will assure the peace and the mutual friendship and harmony of the Central American states, This invitation has been very cordially, accepted by all, and the delegates are announced to meet in this city on the day named therefor.

I have the honor to inclose herewith the official newspaper of Guatemala of the 21st instant, containing Señor Cruz’s note of the 15th ultimo, and the communications in reply of the Governments of Nicaragua, Honduras, Costa Rica, and Salvador. I have also annexed partial translations.

It has appeared to me that the efforts thus put forth to bring about harmony and a good understanding between the Central American Governments, which have not existed in many years, is highly creditable to the Government of Guatemala to which, the initiative is wholly due,

I have, etc.,

Henry C. Hall.
[Inclosure 1 in No. 600—Translation.]

Circular addressed to the departments of state of Salvador, Honduras, Nicaragua, and Costa Rica upon the subject of a meeting of Central American plenipotentiaries in the city of Guatemala.

Mr. Minister: In due course I reported to the President the reply of your excellency to the note I had the honor to address you on the 31st July last, which had for its chief object to propose that the Republics of Central America should enter into a treaty which would be acceptable to all, and having for its bases reciprocal equality, guaranties, and utility, should establish in an enduring manner close relations of unalterable peace and loyal friendship by every stipulation required to strengthen the ties that unite them, give expansion to their commerce, identify their interests, invigorate their fraternal sentiments, and to consolidate lasting friendship as a spontaneous and natural result of the conditions, necessities, and the aspirations of all. The President, desirous that the project thus initiated should be carried out, and, taking into consideration the tenor of the reply of your excellency’s Government as well as those of the Governments of the other Republics, has instructed me to invite the Government of that Republic, should it be favorably disposed, to accredit a minister plenipotentiary to a meeting of the representatives of the Central American States. In case the invitation should be accepted, as desired, my Government will esteem it an honor that this capital should; be selected therefor, and the 20th of January next, 1887, fixed upon for the meeting.

The object of this meeting will be to decide upon the questions which were the subject of my note of the 31st July, and of the several replies thereto. If the result of the deliberations should be as my Government desires and believes, the unanimous acceptance of a treaty in such terms that it shall be an unequivocal token of fraternity and harmony which will insure the peace, strengthen the sympathy, establish the confidence, identify the interests, aspirations, and tendencies of these peoples that for no cause should be alien or indifferent to each other, nor fail in their duties and [Page 87] family ties then a great step in its opinion will have been taken in promoting the prosperity and great destinies of Central America.

Persuaded that your excellency’s Government shares the same sentiments and that not less than Guatemala its patriotic interest is not only to remove every motive or appearance that could give rise to coldness or reserve, but to carry out with certainty and efficiency whatsoever may tend, to unite more closely the Republics of Central America, to enliven them with the warmth of reciprocally frank and cordial intercourse and common interests, and giving to all active participation in the prosperity or adversity of each, I venture to believe that your excellency will honor me with an early and favorable reply.

Be pleased, etc.,

Fernando Cruz
[Inclosure 2 in No. 600.—Translation.]

Señor Elizondo to Señor Cruz.

Mr. Minister: I have had the honor to receive your dispatch dated the 25th ultimo, in which your excellency is pleased to inform me that in conformity with the reply of my predecessor to your note of the 31st July last, his excellency the President of that Republic, desirous of carrying out the project then initiated, and taking into consideration the analogous terms of the replies of the Governments of the other sister Republics, has interested your excellency to invite this Government, should it be deemed expedient, to accredit a minister plenipotentiary to a meeting of the representatives of the Central American Republics.

* * * * * * *

I have informed the President in regard to your excellency’s communication, and have received his instruction to reply to it in the following terms: the Government having already set forth in its dispatch of the 13th of August last its views and sentiments entirely in accord with the laudable purpose that animates the President of that sister Republic, it seems unnecessary that I should express in this communication the pleasure with which my Government accepts the idea of establishing, by a congress of plenipotentiaries of the five Central American Republics, inviolable rules that will assure, in an efficacious manner, the development of their common interests, the maintenance of peace and harmony, indispensable to the fulfillment of their future destinies by means of a treaty, as your excellency suggests.

To prepare in this way the advent of the common heritage of the sons of Central America is an honorable work, and for that reason well worthy of all who are inspired by the patriotism that animated our eminent legislators of 1884.

The President therefore accepts sincerely the invitation contained in the dispatch of your excellency, as also the idea of a meeting of the plenipotentiaries to take place in that capital, and will in due time appoint a citizen to represent Nicaragua.

Your excellency will be pleased to inform me if, in view of the answers your excellency’s Government should receive from the other. Central American Republics, the day of meeting should be postponed.

With sincere satisfaction for the terms in which I am able to reply to your excellency, I reiterate, etc.,

Joaquin Elizondo.
[Inclosure 3 in No. 600.—Translation.]

Señor Zelaya to Señor Cruz.

Mr. Minister:

* * * * * * *

The President of this Republic being informed in regard to the enlightened sentiments of your excellency’s note (of the 15th November) has instructed me to reply to it in the following terms:

My Government, Mr. Minister, cannot do otherwise than accept with enthusiasm and lively sympathy the mature conception of your excellency’s Government, the promoting the meeting of a congress of plenipotentiaries of the Republics of Central America, that for so many reasons, and especially because, they constitute one sole family, [Page 88] ought to draw closer their interests and unite their aspirations and destinies and assimilate in sentiments of intimate confraternity.

It is an obvious necessity, Mr. Minister, that the Central American peoples should live in peace and order; under these auspices only will they be able to develop their material and moral progress, perfect themselves in the practice of the free institutions that they have adopted, and give impulse to their growing importance. The Governments of Central America will fulfill the most imperative of their duties in devoting themselves to the generous and patriotic work of cementing upon solid bases that order and peace so long hoped for, uniting in a solemn compact of family, as it may be called, to watch over the interests, the repose, the welfare, and prosperity of the political communities whose destinies are confided to their care, and to maintain among them an inviolable harmony. Such is the object of the noble initiative of your excellency’s Government, for which that of Honduras sends through my medium its most enthusiastic congratulations.

In conclusion, I am happy to inform your excellency that my Government accepts with pleasure the courteous invitation of that of Guatemala, and will not fail to be represented at the proposed meeting of the plenipotentaries your excellency has suggested.

* * * * * * *

This occasion affords me the pleasure of renewing to your excellency, etc.,

Jerónimo Zelaya.
[Inclosure 4 in No. 600.—Translation.]

Señor Fernandez to Señor Cruz.

Excellency: I have had the honor to receive the esteemed note your excellency has been pleased to address me under date of the 15th November last.

It is very satisfactory to my Government to notice once more the laudable interest your Government has taken in carrying out the projects of a treaty which will secure the peace of Central America, protect and consolidate the friendly relations which exist between the five Republics, protect the private interests of each, and give increment and all possible unity to those interests which may be considered as common to all.

Your excellency, with much reason, gives assurances that if a treaty should be realized in such terms as will make it an unequivocal token of that fraternal friendship and harmony which will assure the peace, strengthen the affection, establish confidence, identify the interests, aspirations, and tendencies of peoples who never for any cause should be alien or indifferent to one another, nor omit their duties and family affection, then a great step will have been taken in advancing the prosperity and the great destinies of Central America.

The Government of Costa Rica, which is of the same opinion and sentiments with that of Guatemala as regards the advantages that will result from such a treaty can not do otherwise than favorably accept the idea announced in your note. The President of the Republic has given instructions to so inform your excellency and to announce that by this mail the required credentials will be sent to the licentiate, Hon. Ascension Esquivel, envoy extraordinary and minister plenipotentiary of this Republic near your Government, to enable him to present himself as delegate to the congress of plenipotentiaries that will meet at that capital on the 20th of January next.

In thus informing your excellency it is highly satisfactory to me to offer, etc.

Mauro Fernandez.
[Inclosure 5 in No. 600.—Translation.]

Señor Delgado to Señor Cruz.

Mr. Minister: I have the honor to refer to the courteous dispatch of your excellency of the 15th ultimo, in which you are pleased to inform me that you reported to the President of your Republic the note I addressed to your excellency on the 24th August, in answer to your highly important one of the 31st July last, and that he, being desirous that the project initiated by your excellency in that communication [Page 89] shall be carried out, has given you instructions to propose to my Government, should the idea be acceptable, to appoint a minister plenipotentiary to a meeting of the representatives of the Republics of Central America. Your excellency is pleased to add that your Government would appreciate it should Guatemala be accepted as the place of the meeting of the plenipotentiaries, and the date therefor fixed for the 20th of January, 1887.

* * * * * * *

The important conceptions contained in your note have impressed the President with great satisfaction, and he has given me instructions to say in reply that he observes with pleasure that your Government has interpreted his sentiments in regard to the fraternity and concord that ought to reign between the members of the Central American family, and the constant and positive efforts that their Governments to make to assimilate their interests to strengthen the ties of mutual affection and cordial friendship that bind them together, and thus to hasten the day when the longed-for union, that ardent ideal and aspiration of Central American patriotism, may be realized. Consequently it is a pleasure to me to assure your excellency that if, as I have no doubt, the other Governments of Central America should accept favorably the fraternal invitation of your excellency, Salvador will send its representative to that capital on the date that your excellency has been pleased to fix for the meeting.

Renewing, etc.,

Manuel Delgado.