Mr. Hanna to Mr. Blaine.
Buenos Ayres, April 11, 1889. (Received May 25.)
Sir: In further justification of President Harrison’s admirable policy, as announced in his message, for the promotion of steam-ship facilities between the United States and the Argentine Republic, I have the honor to make an additional suggestion to what I have hitherto said on the subject.
The flow of European immigration hitherward is phenomenal, not only vastly adding to the overplus product to go upon the market for sale, and increasing the supplies needed in machinery and general merchandise, but in more certainly drawing the resulting advantages away from the United States.
We need ships, steam-ships, United States ships flying our own flag, and when they are once put into service, I have little doubt we will need many of them. We certainly have the best things on earth to sell, all the means we need for obtaining necessary supplies, and there is no reason why we should not be in the market here and everywhere.
As things are now going, over 20,000 immigrants are coming to the River Platte monthly. In the first quarter of 1888, 40,527 immigrants came, and for the same period in 1889, 74,090. The showing for March, just closed, as appears from official figures, is 20,831. Sixty-nine ships were engaged in the importation of these people, thirty-eight of them under the English flag, ten French, nine German, eight Italian, two Belgian, one Spanish, and one Dutch.
The fleet of commercial ships constantly in this port equals, if it does not outnumber, that of Liverpool, but it is a rare thing to see among them the United States flag, and that only confined to small barks of from 500 to 600 tons capacity. I have never seen a United States merchant steamer carrying our great flag in Argentine waters.
I am, etc.,