Mavroyeni Bey to Mr. Gresham .


Mr. Secretary of State: I have the honor to confirm my note dated yesterday touching the order issued to two American war vessels to proceed to Turkish waters, and to inform your excellency that I have not failed to telegraph to the Imperial Government the statement made to me by your excellency in the afternoon, to wit, that the said order was in no wise hostile to the Sublime Porte, and it being the same as that frequently issued by European Governments to their own war ships, it left no doubt for misinterpretation.

I infer from the foregoing that the newspaper rumors set forth in the extract sent you with my note of yesterday, as well as in the extract herewith, are without foundation and do not represent the sentiment and intentions of the American Government.

Be pleased to accept, etc.,

[Inclosure—Press dispatch.]

A massacre threatened—United States war vessels ordered to Turkish waters immediately.

Secretary Herbert has cabled orders to Admiral Kirkland, of the flaghship San Francisco, now at Palermo, Sicily, to sail immediately for Smyrna, Asia Minor, and to have both vessels of his squadron visit Alexandretta and Adana to confer with the United States consuls and resident American citizens, and if it is found that there are good grounds for the apprehensions expressed in those vicinities concerning a probable massacre of Christians, to intimate clearly to the responsible local authorities that the United States intends to afford full protection to American citizens in that territory under its treaty guarantees.

A cablegram has also been sent to Captain O’Neil, of the cruiser Marblehead, at Gibraltar, ordering him to proceed with dispatch to Beirut, Syria, and there report to the admiral. The San Francisco and Marblehead have both been coaled in the past few days, and as their commanders received the urgent orders yesterday morning, it is expected they will get under way immediately. The San Francisco, with her speed of 21 knots, should cover the 800 miles to her destination in less than two days, and the Marblehead, having frequently maintained 17 knots, should run the entire length of the Mediterranean in four days, at the rate of 400 miles per day. This display of force in Turkish waters by the United States is declared at the State Department to be due to the unsatisfactory delays that result from diplomatic negotiations at Constantinople. Although instructions have been sent to Minister Terrell to warn the Sultan of the fears of American missionaries in Smyrna and to demand that the Turkish Government shall take steps to prevent outrages, it has been deemed advisable, in view of past experience, to make assurance for the protection of Americans doubly sure.