Mr. Blount to Mr. Gresham.
Sir: To-morrow, June 18, the China leaves here for San Francisco.
Your letter of the 26th ultimo, informing me of a desire for my final report, was received. Up to this time I have devoted myself to the study of various questions here and the taking of testimony. The latter has been necessarily slow, because Mr. Mills had no aid in transcribing notes, which occupied a great deal of time.
I had supposed it was your wish that I should not undertake to prepare a report until the lapse of two or three months, in order that I might assure myself of a correct comprehension of the situation here. So little had been said in your correspondence with me that I feared to commence too early lest you should suppose I was acting hastily.
Some recent information has made it well that this delay has taken place. I will immediately commence my report and devote myself to it continuously until it is completed.
There is nothing of special importance occurring here now. There is no indication of any movement against the Provisional Government. There seems to be a universal acquiescence on the part of all parties in the idea of awaiting the action of the Government of the United States.
It may be of interest to you to know that in an examination this afternoon of Col. Soper, commanding the military forces of the Provisional Government since the 17th of January last, he stated that at a meeting at the house of Henry Waterhouse, on the night of the 16th of January, composed of members of the committee of safety, and some persons called in, he was offered the command of the military forces; that he declined to accept it until the next day; that in this meeting it was accepted by all as true that Mr. Stevens had agreed that if the persons seeking to dethrone the Queen got possession of the Government building and proclaimed a new government he would recognize it as a de facto government, that he (Soper) never accepted the command until after he had knowledge of this fact; that he is a citizen of the United States and claims allegiance thereto.
I send you a copy of the oath Col. Soper and other foreigners take in order to participate in public affairs in these islands.
I am, etc.,
Special Commissioner of the United States.