Mr. White to Mr. Gresham.
St. Petersburg , February 17, 1894 .
(Received March 5.)
Sir: Referring to the instructions contained in your dispatch No. 149, of December 22, 1893, requiring me to ascertain from the Russian Government whether Jewish emigration to the United States had been assisted by Russian consular authorities, and to mine, No. 189, of February 13, 1894, stating that I had received an answer from the ministry of foreign affairs to the effect that no such assistance had been given, I feel it my duty to call your attention to an article which appears in this morning’s number of the St. Petersburger Zeitung, a German paper of excellent standing published in this city.
The article, under the head of the “Jewish colonization question,” gives an extract from a formal report laid before the general meeting of the directors of the Jewish Colonization Association in London, Baron von Hirsch presiding, on January 21, 1894.
The report, after giving an account of the colonization of Russian Israelites in the Argentine Republic, goes on to state that a considerable number of the colonists were found incapable of labor; that it was necessary to expel these from the Jewish colonies in that region. That from May to December, 1893, more than 500 persons were thus driven out, and that “the greatest part of these were forwarded to North America, receiving, in addition to their traveling expenses, an amount of money sufficient to support them for a short time after their arrival.”
The report then goes on to speak of measures taken to bring out additional Jewish emigrants from Russia, presumably for the purpose of winnowing out the best for the Argentine Republic and forwarding those rejected as unfit to our own.
This would seem to throw some light on the question of the Secretary of the Treasury which formed the basis of your dispatch above referred to.
I may add that the official report to the Jewish Colonization Association above referred to estimates the probable number of Russian Jewish emigrants into the Argentine Republic during the present year at about 4,000 persons.
I am, etc.,