Mr. Peterson to Mr. Uhl.

No. 10.]

Sir: I have the honor to herewith transmit to you for the consideration of the Department the statement of J. Cranstoun, A. Muller, and J. B. Johnstone, pursuant to telegraphic dispatch No. 9, of the 10th instant, and I also send you a newspaper clipping of an editorial1 which appeared in the News-Advertiser of this city of to-day.

And I beg to state, as a matter of farther information to the Department, that these parties have employed counsel and entered suit against the steamship company, owners of the Warrimoo, for transporting them here, each fixing his damages at $50,000.

I have afforded Mr. Cranstoun temporary relief by agreeing to pay his board here, and have bought some small articles of dress for both Muller and Cranstoun, and they will perhaps go to Seattle in a short time, where Cranstoun says he has friends.

I have, etc.,

W. F. Peterson,
Commercial Agent.
[Inclosure in No. 10.]

Statement of J. Cranstoun.

Made at the United States consulate at Vancouver, British Columbia, on the 11th day of February, 1895, before W. F. Peterson, United States commercial agent at that place, to be forwarded to the Department of State of the United States of America, Washington, D. C, to be read in the matter of the deportation of said Cranstoun from the Hawaiian Islands to Vancouver, British Columbia, by the British steamship Warrimoo, which sailed from the port of Honolulu on the 2d day of February, 1895, arriving at Vancouver on the 10th day of February, 1895, the questions being propounded by said Peterson, and the answers being made by said Cranstoun, written in his presence by Vice and Deputy Commercial Agent F. J. Schofield, all of which is in words and figures as follows, to wit:

1. Q. State your age.—A. Thirty-eight years.

2. Q. Your birthplace.—A. Liverpool, England.

3. Q. Your citizenship at present.—A. The United States of America.

4. Q. Your present place of residence.—A. Honolulu.

5. Q. How came you in the city of Vancouver?—A. I was forcibly placed on the steamship Warrimoo at Honolulu on February 2 by armed guards, and compelled to remain there until the ship was in full way.

6. Q. Who were these guards?—A. Policemen of the Republic of Hawaii. The one in charge had senior captain on his cap.

7. Q. Do you know under what authority these men acted?—A. No, sir.

8. Q. Were you first placed under arrest on the day that you were forced to go on board said steamship?—A. No, sir.

[Page 827]

9. Q. Tell all about your arrest, and everything connected with it.—A. On Sunday, the 6th of January, 1895, I was in my room all day and evening, only leaving it twice to go to dinner and supper. In the evening while sitting in my room the landlady of the house where I was rooming called my attention to the fact that there were a number of people hurrying up and down the street, some with guns. I went out to the front gate; stayed there a few minutes, and not seeing anything went back to my room again and never left it till the following morning. I was awakened at about 8 o’clock by Mr. Muller telling me that he could not get into our place of business, as there was a revolution or something going on, and that the building was occupied by the Portuguese volunteer company. I dressed myself and went to the hall and found that Mr. Muller had got in. I stayed there a few moments and then went down town. I stayed downtown until about noon, when I relieved Mr. Muller at the warehouse for one hour. I then went downtown again, continuing about my business of selling grain, hay, and feed. Came back to the warehouse again about 4 o’clock. Had only been there about ten minutes when the door was opened and three or four policemen entered, all heavily armed, and said in words: “Mr. Cranstoun and Mr. Muller, I arrest you.” I asked if he had any papers to show. He said it was martial law, and they did not need any. We were taken outside, where we were placed in a hack, driven to the police station, accompanied by the guards. Arriving there, we inquired the reason for our arrest from the person who seemed to be the receiving clerk, who refused to answer. I was searched by the jailer and everything taken out of my pockets, except tobacco. I was thence taken down to the station yard, where I found four or five white men. I was kept there for probably an hour, during which time we were joined by four or five more. I, along with the rest, was then marshaled into line, on either side of us being guards heavily armed, and we were marched out of the station house, through the crowded streets, down to Oahu prison. Arriving there, we were all searched again and afterwards placed in cells singly, and had a cup of tea and two crackers given me. Shortly after that we were moved into other cells and placed two in a cell. Again we were moved in about an hour to another cell and there left for the night.

The imprisonment continued from January 7 up till February 2, and we were locked up in the cells twenty hours out of every twenty-four, during which time I had no communication whatever with anyone except with United States Minister Willis, in the presence of other Americans, and one gentleman who called to see me on a matter of business. No Government official of any kind ever interviewed me; no papers were ever served on me; none read to me during the time I was in prison, nor at any time thereafter till now. February 2, 1895, at 10 o’clock, the guards came to the cell which Mr. Muller and I occupied, told us we were wanted, and to pick up what little things we had, which consisted of one change of underclothing suitable for tropical climates, and a few toilet articles. I asked the guard where we were going, but they said they did not know. Arriving at the jail yard we found Mr. J. B. Johnstone also preparing to leave. As we made our exit to the outer yard we found six guards there armed, in command of the senior captain of police. They broke ranks and we were placed in the center and marched through the public streets to the station house. Arriving there we were placed in a cell, and in a few moments I was called, taken upstairs, and found myself in the presence of W. O Smith, attorney-general, and a man I afterwards found out was the marshal, E. G. Hitchcock. The attorney-general said: “Mr. Cranstoun, you are going to leave on the Warrimoo, sailing in an hour from now.” I answered that I was not. He told me that I had nothing to say about it whatever, and that if I wanted to leave a power of attorney with anyone to attend to my business I could do so. I told him that I absolutely refused to do anything of the kind, and that if they placed me on the ship it would be by force; that I would resist to the last, and I demanded to see the American minister, Mr. Willis. The marshal then spoke for the first time, and said: “God damn you, you shall not see him.” I told him that I would try to, and that neither he nor his Government at his back could bluff me for one moment. He said: “God damn you, you are going on board that ship.” I told him that I had no clothes for any such trip. He said: “Damn you, you can go in the clothes you have on.” I went out of the door, followed by the marshal, and on the outside found a Kanaka policeman on guard. I turned to the marshal and said: “I now demand again, in the presence of this man, that you send for the American minister, Mr. Willis.” The answer I got was: “Sit down, sir” (pointing to a chair). I told him that I would sit down when I got good and ready. He said: “God damn you, sit down.” I told him to go to hell. He said to the native policeman: “Make him sit clown.” He caught hold of me and forced me into a chair.

In a short while afterwards I saw Mr. Muller enter the room which I had been in, and shortly after emerge again. In about half an hour, as near as I can judge, I was taken down to the station yard again and found Mr. Muller and Mr. Johnstone also there. Six guards then came alongside of us and we were moved out into the street, where we saw three hacks waiting. I was told to get into one, and refused [Page 828] to do so, and was placed in there by the two guards. We were driven rapidly toward the wharf, and on arriving there I was told to come out of the hack. This I refused to do, and was taken from there by the guards and walked toward the gang plank, up which I refused to walk I heard the command given by somebody—I don’t know who—“Shove him on board, shove him on board,” and I was forcibly taken on board up the gang plank by two native policemen, who held me by the arms nearly all the time the steamer was at the wharf. I met a man in uniform as soon as I got to the deck, and told him that I wished to see the captain of the ship. I never saw him then or after, till two days out. Soon after our arrival on the steamer the British commissioner, Major Hawes, came on board. I called to him and asked him if he would kindly telephone to the United States minister, Mr. Willis, on my behalf; that I was being carried away without having had a chance of being able to communicate with him. He promised to do so, and soon after the United States consul, Mr. Mills, arrived, closely followed by Minister Willis. Mr. Mills said: “Mr. Cranstoun, what is this thing that is going on? I have just now heard of it.” I was commencing to tell him the circumstances when Mr. Willis appeared, and we went into the cabin together—Mr. Willis Mr. Mills, and myself—Mr. Willis having requested the officer in charge for a private interview with me. I related all the circumstances to him as they actually occurred, and as they are stated here. He asked me then, for the first time, if I had been connected in any way with the late trouble, and said as a friend I might confide in him. I told him that I knew nothing about it whatever, in any way, directly or indirectly, and was absolutely ignorant that there was any trouble going on until Monday, the 7th day of January last. He asked me if any papers had ever been served on me, or if I had any trial. I said that I had never even seen a Government official until that morning; that no papers had ever been served on me, nor even any intimation been given me of the cause of my arrest and detention.

He excused himself for a few moments and returning said: “Mr. Cranstoun, there is something wrong here, as the marshal tells me that they had preferred charges against you, and that the proofs were conclusive.” I said that it was an infamous lie; and he then asked me if I would swear to that statement. I told him certainly. Mr. Mills wrote it in shorthand, read it to me, I signed it, and Mr. Mills swore me as to its truth. He then asked me if I was willing to stand trial, saying: “Mr. Cranstoun, I want to take thoroughly into account the fact that they may bring 10 or 12 witnesses to swear to things that might not be so, and in that case it might go hard with me (you),” and asked me to consider very carefully my decision, as the present proceedings had shown what they could do, and there was no telling what they might do. I told him that I was fully aware of the unscrupulous villains that the Government have employed, and that if any evidence like that was brought against me it would be simply my misfortune; but, as I had done nothing in any way to warrant my arrest, I was willing to take chances and face a trial, and would even then go out on the dock and stand it. He promised to do all he could for me, and afterwards left the ship. Some little time after the vessel pulled away from the wharf, the armed guards still being with us, remaining by our side until the steamer was well out into the harbor, and they said good-bye to us and went on board the pilot boats. I first saw the captain of the steamer Warrimoo as he was making his daily inspection of the steerage accommodations, about two days after leaving Honolulu. I told him that I wished to see him. I asked him if he would please give me a statement in writing as to what had occurred at Honolulu during our deportation. He said he could not do that, but if called upon to testify would state just what happened. I asked him if he had any legal papers served on him by anyone, showing why we were arrested, and any judgments that had been rendered against us. He said that he had none. Prior to this, and while on the deck of the steamer at Honolulu, we asked the senior captain of police, who was in charge of the squad of policemen, what had become of the things we had on our person when arrested. He said that he had handed something to the purser of the ship. After the guards left us we went to the purser, and he handed myself, Mr. Muller, and Mr. Johnstone, in each other’s presence, a package each, bearing our names on a tag. On opening mine I found it to contain what articles I had had when arrested.

After my conversation with the captain, as above, and after due consideration, I served him with a notice on behalf of myself and Mr. Muller, formally protesting against his action in forcibly carrying us away from Honolulu against our wills and protest. And again, on arriving at Victoria on the evening of the 9th of February last, we served the captain with a notice, stating that we would hold himself and the company he represented responsible in damages for such forcible taking away, and for all damages resulting therefrom. A few minutes after he had read the note he said: “What kind of a game are you fellows trying to play with me?” I told him that it was no game at all; that we were simply protecting our legal rights. “Legal rights? You have not got any, and the first thing you know I will have you fellows by the heels. I told him there was no use getting personal over the matter, and left him. The next morning, on the trip up from Victoria to Vancouver, we were [Page 829] told that the captain wanted to see us on the bridge. We went up there and he said: “What do you fellows mean to do? Do you intend to stay on board the ship?” I told him that it would depend upon the action of the United States consul at Vancouver, into whose care I intended to place myself.

The captain and Mr. Muller had some words as to the profanity used by the captain in our conversation with him. He cooled down after a little, and Mr. Muller left the bridge. The captain said: “I am surprised at your serving this notice on me, as I would not come away without proper authority.” I told him that I understood from him that he had no legal authority. He said: “I did not tell you whether I had or had not.” He said: “I did get a paper served on me, and I will show you a copy of it.” We then went down to his cabin, and before opening his desk he asked me if I knew who Mr. Hatch was. I told him I thought he was the minister of foreign affairs at Honolulu. He then showed me a paper which he said was a copy of the original which was in the safe. The paper contained a statement only, as I remember, in substance as follows:

“There will be brought on board the steamship Warrimoo this morning three prisoners to be deported to Vancouver, British Columbia. The Hawaiian Government hereby assumes all responsibility for any damage that may occur through such deportation. The names of the prisoners are Johnstone, Cranstoun, and Muller.”

As near as I can recollect, the copy was not signed, but the captain called my attention to the fact that the word “seal” was written on the left-hand corner of the paper, and stated that the Hawaiian seal was on the original. I told the captain that I did not wish to create a disturbance of any kind, and that I would remain on board until I saw the United States consul at Vancouver and be guided entirely by his advice. He said that he had no objections to that.

Sometime after I arrived at Vancouver, Mr. Peterson, United States consul, accompanied by Mr. Sehofield, came on board. I stated the facts to them as they occurred and as they are given above. That I was there with little or no money; with only the clothes I stood in and with only a change of underclothing, and I asked for his advice and assistance. He advised me to stay on board until the following morning (Monday), and he would let me know what course to pursue. We found that we would be unable to get anything to eat on board the steamer, and had just made arrangements with a newspaper correspondent to get something to eat, when Mr. Peterson and Mr. Sehofield came on board again, about 6 o’clock in the evening. Mr. Sehofield accompanied us to a hotel, he making the arrangements for our retention there. On Monday morning, February 11, we kept an appointment made with Mr. Peterson, and again in the afternoon, at 2 o’clock, for our depositions to be taken; and I am now in the United States consulate with only $4.80 Hawaiian money in my pocket.

10. Q. How did you obtain your citizenship of the United States?—A. By being naturalized.

11. Q. Where?—A. At Deadwood, S. Dak., I declared my intentions.

12. Q. When?—A. In the year 1878 or 1879. The court-house and all the records were afterwards destroyed by fire.

13. Q. In what court?—A. The district court of Lawrence County, S. Dak.

14. Q. Who was the presiding judge?—A. I think that Gideon C. Moody presided, who afterwards became United States Senator from South Dakota.

15. Q. Who was the clerk?—A. A. R. Z. Dawson.

16. Q. What became of the naturalization papers?—A. They have been lost or mislaid, for some time.

17. Q. Have you taken any steps toward having them reproduced?—A. While at Honolulu I wrote back to Mr. A. R. Z. Dawson, the then clerk of the district court of South Dakota, asking him if he recollected the fact of my taking out my first papers and the fact of the records having been destroyed by fire in 1879; and if so, to please send me an affidavit covering all the facts in the case. He afterwards sent back to me at Honolulu an affidavit, duly certified, comprising all the facts above mentioned. This was in my trunk at the time of my arrest. As I have never been to my room or seen my trunk since then, I do not know whether it is there or not now, as I was told at the wharf that the Government officials had broken open my trunk and abstracted papers therefrom. A. R. Z. Dawson’s post-office address is Deadwood, S. Dak.

18. Q. Were any other indignities offered you while under arrest than those you have already stated? If so, tell what they were.—A. When the first steamer arrived from the United States after my arrest I sent an order up through the jailer for a gentleman to get my mail and hold it—Clarence Crabbe by name. The second day after the steamer was in one batch of letters, about four in number, was passed through the bars of the cell to me by the jailer—Mr. Lowe—all open. He said that they had been opened by the marshal. About an hour afterwards another batch of letters was handed me—about ten. They were also open. From the second mail that arrived from the United States I also received some letters in the same condition.

19. Q. What business were you engaged in at Honolulu at the time of your [Page 830] arrest?—A. Principally grain, bay, and feed. But I was obtaining new agencies from the States nearly all the time; and in the mail which was opened by order of the marshal I had three offers from parties in the States who wished to open business connections with me. I had just received a first shipment of a new brand of soaps specially manufactured for the Hawaiian Islands, and which I was just beginning to introduce into the market when arrested. I had also received notice that a carload of flour of a new brand would be forwarded to me in the month of February; and I also expected other shipments of flour from other parties. I have had no chance to communicate with these firms since I received their letters. I had received a shipment by the Canadian-Australian Steamship Company about the 5th of January, 1895, most of which was on hand at the time of my arrest. There was another shipment sent to me on the 21st of January, and which was still on the wharf at the time I was forcibly deported.

20. Q. State the probable value of your stock of merchandise on hand at the time of your arrest.—A. About $1,400,

21. Q. The amount that has arrived there since your arrest?—A. I should judge the value to be about $400.

22. Q. Did you leave anyone in charge of your business?—A. Under the advice of United States Minister Willis I executed a power of attorney on board the steamship Warrimoo, written on a scrap of paper with pencil by Mr. Mills, empowering Mr. Clarence Crabbe to transact business for me and do what he could under the circumstances.

23. Q. Who had your business in charge while you were in jail?—A. Nobody; I expected to be let free from day to day.

24. Q. Did you take any part in the politics of the island; and if so, in what way?—A. At one time I belonged to a club of Germans, principally, called the Schützen Club, but it broke up about the month of October. Since then I have had nothing whatever to do with any political party or organization.

25. Q. State, in general terms, the objects of this club.—A. It was to resist monarchy and to support the present form of government as far as practicable, and to obtain the annexation of the Hawaiian Islands to the United States.

26. Q. Did you ever exercise any of the rights of citizenship in that country?—A. No.

27. Q. Did you, while in prison, demand a trial or attempt to get information as to the charges that were preferred against you? And if so, tell all about it.—A. In the first place, there were perhaps about 50 whites who belonged to one party or crowd—that is, who are allowed to exercise together during the day and who are kept apart and separate from the other prisoners. During the first week several were withdrawn from the party, and that kept up until about 32 or 33 were left, of which I was one. At one time the American minister was sent for by the American persons who were present representing the other Americans, viz, a Mr. Ross, Mr. Peterson, Mr. Creighton, and myself. We requested a private interview, which was granted. Among other things, the question of the probable cause of our arrest was discussed. Mr. Willis stated that he had been informed that the most of us had been arrested as precautionary measures—not for what we had done, but for what they thought we might do. At another interview the question of a speedy trial was brought up, and Mr. Willis stated that if we were willing to be guided by his advice we would not ask for any trial at that time. The other gentlemen stated that they were willing to abide by his decision, and he asked me then if I wished for a speedy trial. If I did so, he would demand it. I told him I was willing to leave everything in his hands; that we were absolutely powerless, and whatever he counseled as being for the best I was willing to abide by. He then told me that it would not be policy to ask for a trial at that time. He gave as his reason that the Government was between two fires and was almost in the hands of the mob, and said that every day we delayed the trial it would be so much better for us. This was taken in connection with the previous conversation, and to which we had called Mr. Willis’s attention. To a rumor which had reached us in the jail that there were some parties who wished to shoot without trial all persons who had been arrested, natives or whites, Mr. Willis told us that he knew of that fact; and he also informed us that part of the Government were advocating the same stringent measures. He said that he interviewed the President as soon as he heard of it, and protested against any such outrage. He said that the President told him that nothing like that would be allowed to occur, and he guaranteed that all who had been arrested would have a fair trial.

28. Q. Did you have any trial at all?—A. No.

29. Q. Were you called up before anyone and formally condemned?—A. No.

30. Q. Do you know the cause of your arrest? If not actual knowledge, give your belief from circumstances and facts.—A. I do not know to this day why I was arrested and deported, and believe that it was instigated by competitors in business who were strong supporters of the Hawaiian Government and are rich corporations, whose customers in our particular line I was fast obtaining. A corporation took [Page 831] advantage of the influence they had over the Government at this particular time to have my partner and myself seized, as I verily believe.

31. Q. Did you have anything to do in any shape or form with the alleged insurrection on the 6th of January last?—A. No.

32. Q. Did you at any time advise, incite, or persuade anyone to take up arms against the Government of the Hawaiian Islands?—A. No.

33. Q. Did you in any conversation hold any language antagonistic to the Government as it now exists?—A. No; I was neutral.

34. Q. Did you have or carry any arms?—A. No; never in my life.

35. Q. Were your sympathies in the threatened troubles with the present Government and the natives with the whites or the natives?—A. I was absolutely neutral, but intended, if the natives got control and tried to massacre the whites, to take up arms in defense of myself and would stand back to back with my other white brethren to defend their lives and my own, and this is the pith and substance on the subject of all my utterances.

36. Q. State your opinion and the facts upon which to base it, whether or not, on the charge of treason against the existing Government of the Hawaiian Islands, one can get a fair and impartial trial.—A. Mr. Willis’s attention was called specially one day while we were in jail to the fact that attempts had been made by people in the employ of the Government, and others, to manufacture testimony against some of the prisoners. The whole facts were laid before him at the time, and he was told just how the information was derived by us—that they had called two or three of the prisoners up for examination before two men, neither of them lawyers or holding any position in the legal department of the Government—and the prisoners had been told that they must testify to such and such alleged facts, and if they did not do so they would be punished; and some who refused to so testify were separated from their cellmates and put in close confinement. Mr. V. V. Ashford was about that time on trial; and as he was in the hospital in the yard in which we exercised, the information was conveyed to us that an attempt had been made on his trial to get witnesses to swear that they had seen him at various places supposed to be secret meeting places for the Royalists, and upon cross-examination they were asked the same questions again, and gave entirely different answers. When asked why they had testified against Mr. Ashford, they stated that they were told to say so, or they would be hung. The lawyers in jail with us—Messrs. Peterson and Creighton—stated to Mr. Willis their fear that the Government, with the aid of its innumerable spies—unscrupulous men—would endeavor to do with all arrested what had been attempted to be done with those who had already been tried, and that we in jail would be absolutely powerless to successfully combat a deep-laid plan, with perjured evidence to convict innocent men of grave crimes. They all expressed their fears to Mr. Willis that such would be the fate of all those who had been arrested. Mr. Willis said that he realized that fact very well, and also that we would be placed in a very hard position to clear ourselves.

And further, a day or two before our deportation a man who had been with our party in jail for a day or two—T. B. Walker by name—and who had pleaded guilty to the charge of treason, visited us in the yard one morning and had the word passed around that he was there for the purpose and as an emissary of the Government to invite all those who wished to leave the country to do so, and that he had been told by the judge-advocate-general to inform us that he would use his influence with the Government to see that those who wished were permitted to leave. I myself had no conversation with him whatever except to say “Good morning.” I have since learned that this man Walker turned state’s evidence in order to secure his release. None of the prisoners accepted the proposition and were highly indignant that such overtures should be made by such a man. Mr. Willis was requested by us to resent the insult, and we learned subsequently that an apology had been tendered with the statement that it had all been a mistake.

37. Q. Did you know any of the men incarcerated with you previous to your own incarceration?—A. Only one; and that one slightly—that man I had tried to sell some oats to.

38. Q. Who paid the passage money on the Warrimoo Tell all you know about it.—A. I do not know who paid the money. The captain informed me that it was paid at the office of the steamship company, and said that they were not losing any money by bringing us over, and that they might have to take us back again, for the authorities might not allow us to land.

39. Q. What kind of passage did you have on the vessel—first or second class?—A. We were in the steerage.

40. Q. How were you clad?—A. I had light underclothing just suitable for a tropical climate, and a very thin coat and no vest. I traded on the steamer for a coat with a fellow-passenger. I suffered severely from the cold, and now have the rheumatism.

41. Q. If the Department of State should desire to communicate with you at any time soon what will be your post-office?—A. I desire all communications to me to be mailed in care of this consulate.

J. Cranstoun.
[Page 832]

J. Cranstoun, being recalled, on this 12th day of February, 1895, deposes and says as follows:

Q I notice to-day that I failed yesterday to ask you the direct question as to your occupation, and will do so now.—A. Merchant and commission broker.
Q. I Will also ask you the places at which you resided in the United States; the time, and length of time, at each place?—A. I was in New York City and Brooklyn for eight or nine months. Then 1 went through Canada, and then to Kansas City, and then to the southern part of Kansas; then into Wyoming; then to Dakota Territory, and stayed there for a number of years; made a trip to Europe, then back to South Dakota; then to Seattle; made a trip to New Mexico; returned to Seattle again, and from thence I went to Honolulu. I stayed at Seattle for about five years before going to Honolulu.
Q. I see a statement in the News-Advertiser of this city of the 12th instant to the effect that you were concerned in the blowing up, or attempting to blow up, a church in Honolulu with dynamite, and that this was what you were deported for. Tell what you know about it.—A. I have read the article, and it is a lie from beginning to encl, and too silly for me to give it a second thought. I know nothing about dynamite or any explosives in any way whatever; and I never heard, knew, or saw anything of it till I saw it in the News-Advertiser.

J. Cranstoun.
  1. Not printed.