Mr. Straus to Mr. Blaine.

No. 202.]

Sir: In compliance with an invitation, I dined last evening with His Majesty the Sultan at Yildez Palace.

His Majesty conversed very freely at the table, and expressed great sympathy for the sufferers from the recent flood at Johnstown. He seemed to be conversant with the details of that accident, and stated that he would very much like to contribute to their relief. He asked if I would be the medium of transmitting such a sum as he might send me. I replied to him that I surely would, and that I had no doubt it would be highly appreciated as a mark of his sympathy for the people in my country. I should state in this connection that these expressions on the part of the Sultan were entirely spontaneous, as no reference by me had been made regarding the disaster. His Majesty desired me personally to express his cordial greetings to the President of the United States, and also to inform him of the regret he felt at my departure.

I have, etc.,

O. S. Straus.