Mr. Gresham to Mr. Rojas.
Washington, January 21, 1894.
Sir: I have had the honor to receive, through the Venezuelan minister at this capital, your excellency’s communication of 24th November last, in which you are pleased to express the satisfaction with which your Government has seen a certain map and statement printed in a report on the agriculture of South America, published in 1892 by the Department of Agriculture of the United States, which bear upon the question of the boundary between Venezuela and British Guiana.
This publication, being compiled for the division of statistics in the Department of Agriculture and by its authority, should not be taken as an authoritative expression by the Department charged with the conduct of foreign affairs upon the merits of the controversy so long pending [Page 810] between Venezuela and Great Britain touching the boundaries between their contiguous territories on the Caribbean coast.
The Government of the United States has on several occasions in the past exerted its impartial offices toward bringing about a good understanding between the disputants. It has advised the submitting of their cause of difference to the friendly arbitration of a third power; but it has not expressed an opinion concerning the merits of the historical and other data upon which the conflicting territorial claims may respectively rest.
I avail myself, etc.,