Mr. Adee to Mr. Yang Yü.

Sir: In further reply to your note of the 27th ultimo, calling my attention to the arrest from day to day of respectable Chinese laborers and their incarceration in jails in California without being allowed to be relieved on bail pending their appeals to the Supreme Court of the United States, and requesting that the attention of the Attorney-General be directed to this state of affairs, with the hope that he may be able to discover some means by which they may be allowed to be discharged [Page 260]on bail, I inclose herewith for your information copy of a communication received from the Attorney-General under date of October 2.

Accept, etc.,

Alyey A. Adee,
Acting Secretary.
[Inclosure.]

Mr. Olney to Mr. Gresham.

Sir: I have yours of the 29th ultimo, calling my attention to a communication to the Department of State from the Chinese minister, in which he suggests that the Attorney-General of the United States may be able, by some methods of his own and through the action of the United States district attorneys, to cause Chinese persons to be admitted to bail for whom writs of habeas corpus have been applied in the course of the enforcement of the provisions of the so-called Geary law.

I have had several conferences on the subject with the counsel of the Chinese legation, Mr. May.

The difficulty about admission to bail in the cases referred to is the rule of the Supreme Court expressly declaring that, “pending an appeal from the final decision of any court or judge declining to grant the writ of habeas corpus, the custody of the prisoner shall not be disturbed.” I have suggested—and I believe the counsel of the Chinese legation agrees with me—that the only possible remedy is through an application to the Supreme Court for a modification of its rule.

Very respectfully, etc.,

Richard Olney,
Attorney-General.