No. 978.
Mr. Bayard to Mr. Curry.

No. 262.]

Sir: I desire to call your attention to a case which appears to be clearly in contravention of the commercial agreement with Spain which has lately been extended to June 30 next.

The American brig J.W. Parker (John W. Kane, master) entered at Zaza, Cuba, from a Spanish port in Porto Rico in ballast. On clearing from the former port with a cargo of mahogany, the master was compelled to pay, under protest, a duty of $1 per ton on the register tonnage of his vessel.

No Spanish vessel would be compelled to pay such an amount; indeed, as shown by Mr. Williams’s No. 340, of January 28, 1886 (see Foreign Relations, 1886, pp. 783, 784), the charge on a Spanish vessel under similar circumstances would be 25 cents per ton.

Copies of the papers are inclosed, and you are requested to present the case to the Spanish Government and to ask the repayment of the excess of duties exacted from Captain Kane.

I am, etc.,

T. F. Bayard.
[Inclosure 1 in No. 262.]

Mr. Kane to Mr. Bayard.

Sir: I beg to call your excellency’s attention to the following case: On my clearing the brig J. W. Parker from the custom-house at Zaza, Cuba, I was charged $1 per ton on the register tonnage of my vessel. This charge is, according to treaty recently [Page 1433]concluded between Spain and the United States, unlawful, and I protested against it, a copy of which I inclose, together with certificate from the custom-house for the ton-age dues; it is also contrary to instructions received from United States consul-general at Havana, who informed me that I should pay 25 cents per ton on my cargo. I entered in ballast from a Spanish port of Porto Rico, and cleared with a full cargo of mahogany and cedar. Will your excellency take the necessary steps to recover the amount I have paid in excess of what would have been a lawful tonnage due and be kind enough to inform me of the fact?

The amount I paid was $361.

Respectfully yours,

John W. Kane.
[Inclosure 2 in No. 262.]

Protest of Mr. Kane.

On this 27th day of December, 1887, before me the undersigned, consular agent of the United States of America for Zaza and dependencies thereof, personally appeared John W. Kane, master and owner of the brig called the J. W. Parker, of New York, and says: He being charged $1 per ton on the register tonnage of his vessel at the above-named port of Zaza by the custom-house authorities, which is against the memorandum of agreement between Spain and the United States, dated the 21st day of September last, and also against instructions received this day from the consul-general at Havana, dated the 22d instant, and after stating the facts contained in the foregoing premises hath protested like as by these presents, I, the said consular agent, at his special instance and request, do publicly and solemnly protest against paying the same as being an unlawful charge.

In testimony whereof the said John W. Kane hath hereunto subscribed his name, and I, the said consular agent, set my hand and affixed the seal of office the day and year next above written.

[seal.]
Sinesio R. Ballesta,
United States Consular-Agent.

John W. Kane,
Master.
[Inclosure 3 in No. 262.—Translation.]

Receipt of the collector of customs.

Don José Ruiz Gaitero, 5th administrative officer, collector of customs at this port, acting collector.

I certify that Don Alejo Girond, consignee of the American schooner J. W. Parker, J. W. Kane, captain, has paid at this subaltern office the sum of $361.14, for amount of tonnage dues of said vessel, at the rate of $1 per ton, according to regulation 6, for which payment the corresponding receipt was given to him.


José Ruiz,
Acting Collector.