Mr. Ryan to Mr. Blaine.

No. 8.]

Sir: Impressed with the importance of the subject of your instruction No. 268, of the 16th ultimo, addressed to Mr. Bragg, I called unofficially on Mr. Mariscal and spoke with him of the importance of the cattle industry of both countries, of efficient regulations for inspection, quarantine, and stamping out of contagious bovine diseases that might be found [Page 562] to exist among the cattle of both countries. I informed him that many of the States and Territories, as well as the General Government of the United States, had already provided such regulations and desired the co-operation of his Government.

Mr. Mariscal suggested that I should place the matter before Mr. Pacheco, minister of public works, under whose jurisdiction the question belonged. Mr. Pacheco is absent from the capital for some weeks, but I visited the under secretary, accompanied by the Hon. E. G. Ross and Mr. Warner, of New Mexico, members of a committee authorized to confer with the Mexican Government upon the question.

To him I reiterated what I had stated to Mr. Mariscal, and explained to him the fatal and contagious character of pleuro-pneumonia among the cattle of other countries, and called his attention to the fact that if once it got hold on the cattle on the open ranges of Mexico it would be almost impossible to eradicate it.

Should this occur, the cattle industry of his country would sustain irreparable injury, and that a policy of non-intercourse would become imperative. I urged also that it was the opinion of well-informed men in my country that the natural conditions of northern Mexico were exceptionally favorable to cattle-raising, giving promise of becoming vast breeding grounds for supplying American farmers who could profitably feed and fatten them for the markets of our country, thus assuring to Mexico the growth of an industry which must inevitably result in its becoming an element of great national wealth, etc., all of which arguments were re-enforced by elaborate details brought forward by Governor Ross and Mr. Warner.

Mr. Fernandez replied in substance that the Mexican Government would be pleased to receive any information that might be furnished bearing upon the subject, the great importance of which he fully realized.

He stated that the matter was within the joint jurisdiction of the department of public works and that of the interior, and did not think any legislation was necessary to authorize his Government to adopt reasonable sanitary regulations. He added that these departments had for some time past been making the matter a subject of searching investigation, alike through the consuls abroad and its representative at Washington, Mr. Romero; and that the data collected were being compiled with a view to intelligent action. Also that the governors of several States had been requested to furnish information of any sanitary measures authorized by the States, and of any regulations in use for the prevention and eradication of bovine diseases. He was pleased to add that he thought that not only his own department but every department of the Government (fully realizing the importance of the matter) would co-operate in any proper measures for the mutual protection of this important industry.

I am, etc.,

Thomas Ryan.