Mr. Gresham to Baron Fava.
Washington, May 7, 1894.
Dear Baron Fava: Referring to your personal note to me of the 19th ultimo, in regard to the condition of the Italian immigrants who fall into the hands of speculators, I have the pleasure to inclose for your information copy of a letter from Mr. Carlisle in response to the communication which I addressed to him on the subject.
In addition, permit me to refer to my colleague’s statement that “under the alien contract-labor law, if proper evidence could be procured, these immigrants could be prevented from landing, and the padroni bankers or employés could be punished for bringing them here under contract.” Mr. Carlisle shows how difficult it is to obtain from the immigrants themselves information which would enable the rigid requirements of our law to be enforced as respects the padroni.
This suggests that a remedy might lie, to a great extent, with the Italian consuls, who, being better situated to ascertain from their deluded countrymen the practices to which they have been subjected, could doubtless bring to the knowledge of the Treasury officers sufficient data upon which to act in enforcement of our laws in this regard. Should they do so, I can assure you of the most cordial cooperation of our agents.
I quite agree with Mr. Carlisle touching the impracticability of meeting the problem through specially organized bureaus of labor.
Feeling sure that my colleague’s views will commend themselves to your good judgment,
I am, etc.,