Mr. Uhl to Mr. Olney.

No. 99.]

Sir: Referring to my dispatch No. 62, of the 12th ultimo, I have the honor to transmit herewith certain original reports with tabulated statements accompanying, more particularly mentioned below, which have been received from the United States consulates at Bremen, Hamburg, and Stettin, on the subject of the payment of tonnage and light dues by American vessels in German ports.

It will be seen that at Bremen, Bremerhaven, and Brake American vessels are not, and have not been since April 1, 1888, exempt from such dues, and that during the period from January 26, 1888, to June 20, 1896, in addition to pilotage, harbor fees, police charges, etc., light and tonnage dues amounting to $495.30 have been paid by six American vessels at those ports. At Hamburg the same condition of affairs appears to exist. Since February 6, 1888, twenty-one vessels have paid tonnage dues amounting to 7,538.33 marks, or (at the rate of 1 mark being equal to $0,238) $1,794.12, besides the usual harbor-master’s fees and fees for hire of customs signals. There are, however, no light dues at Hamburg, nor are there any tonnage dues to be paid by vessels at Cuxhaven (in Hamburg territory) or at Harburg (Prussia), both of which places are practically parts of the port of Hamburg. The records are said to have been destroyed at Stettin, but it is estimated that three American vessels have paid as tonnage dues about 2,009 marks, or $478.14. During the period in question no American vessels have entered the port of Königsberg, and one vessel in 1889 at Danzig paid dues amounting to 616 marks, or $146.61.

From the above it appears that since January 26, 1888, thirty-one American vessels have paid as light and tonnage dues in German ports about $2,914.17.

I have, etc.,

Edwin F. Uhl.
[Page 148]
[Inclosure 1 in No. 99.]

Detailed statement showing the aggregate amounts of the tonnage dues and other taxes imposed by German authorities upon American vessels arriving at Hamburg and outlying ports within the period from January 26, 1888, to June 30, 1896, inclusive.

Name of vessel. Tonnage. Date of entry. Date of clearance. Port from which entered. Tonnage dues collected. Admiralty pilotage collected. Hiring of customs signals. Harbor master’s fee. Total taxes and dues collected.
1888. 1888. Marks. Marks. Marks. Marks. Marks.
Wm. Woodbury 1,154 Feb. 6 Mar. 29 Baltimore 326.90 257.04 7.20 591.14
Hamilton Fish 1,581 July 3 Sept. 29 New York 461.20 211.68 6 7.20 686.08
E. W. Stetson 1,106 Sept. 14 Oct. 18 do 329.80 179.34 6 7.20 522.34
Progreso (steamship) 1,445 Nov. 15 Nov. 26 Bremerhaven 271.80 64.26 6 7.20 349.26
1889. 1889.
Corsica 1,270 Mar. 10 Apr. 18 New York 378.80 234.36 7.20 620.36
Hamilton Fish 1,581 July 1 July 26 do 461.20 211.68 6 7.20 577.58
Martha Cobb 1,549 July 12 Aug. 14 do 367.40 196.98 6 7.20 577.58
David Crockett 1,482 July 17 Aug. 20 do 438.30 205.80 6 7.20 657.30
1891. 1891.
Hamilton Fish 1,581 Oct. 18 Nov. 21 do 461.20 332.64 6 7.20 807.04
Don Justo 709 Nov. 16 (*) Hongkong { 105.65 } 217.14 6 7.20 547.29
1892. 1892.
Annie Johnson 947 Apr. 22 May 24 San Francisco 282.40 99.12 6 7.20 394.72
Mary Sanford† 455 July 2 July 18 Acra 72.24 6 117.24
1893. 1893.
Mary S. Ames 664 Feb. 10 Mar. 30 Layen Island { 198.30 } 69. 30 7. 20 379. 95
Geo E. Vernon 566 Mar. 9 May 9 Rosario 160.60 54.18 6 7.20 221.98
1894. 1894.
Conqueror 1,540 Feb. 13 May 12 Puget Sound 229.75 290.00 6 7.20 532.95
Herbert Black 544 Apr. 17 June 8 Barbados 154.30 139.00 6 7.20 306.50
Benj. F. Hunt 1,131 July 17 Sept. 4 Buenos Ayres 337.40 208.00 6 7.20 558.60
Manuel Staguno 1,649 Aug. 15 Sept. 18 Tacoma 490.90 255.00 6 7.20 759.10
George Curtis 1,745 Oct. 2 Nov. 20 do 520.70 344.00 6 7.20 877.90
Commodore 1,909 Nov. 3 Jan. 18 Port Blakeley 560.90 357.00 7.20 931.10
U. S. S. Marblehead. 2,040 June 9 June 19 Southampton 57.50 2 57.50
Charger 1,372 Dec. 9 (*) La Plata 490.80 306.00 7.20 806.00
1896. 1896.
Rebecca Crowell 557 Mar. 18 May 18 Haiti via Falmouth 199.58 149.00 7.20 355.78

* Sold at Hamburg.

† Quarantine dues, 39 marks.

Note.—All of the vessels enumerated in the above statement entered at the port of Hamburg, except the Mary Sanford. This vessel made entry at Harburg, a port near Hamburg, where no tonnage duos are exacted. The only tax imposed upon her by the authorities of Hamburg was one of 27.30 marks for harbor and lock dues.

[Inclosure 2 in No. 99—Translation.]

Table of rates according to which the harbor dues in Swinemuende (Stettin) and the taxes for the using of the different institutions in that place are to be raised.

A. Harbor dues are to be paid for every cubic meter of tonnage for all sea-going vessels, in or out.

I. With cargo: Pfennigs.
On entering 10
On going out 10
II. With ballast or empty:
On entering 5
On going out 5


Vessels of 170 cubic meters or less tonnage pay the duties according to A, I, and according to II, with 5 pfennigs, respectively, 2 pfennigs for every cubic meter of tonnage.
Vessels whose cargoes (a) do not exceed the fourth part of their tonnage (b) and consists exclusively in pantiles, rooting slates, quarry stones, cement stones, granite [Page 149] stones, limestones, building stones, plaster stones, brick stones of all kinds, ground cement in sacks and tons, chalk, potters’ earth, sea grass, sea sand, pipe clay, turf, coals, coke, brimstone, salt, salt stones, china clay, feldspar, powder, flint, granite plates, quartz, clay, etc., have only to pay harbor dues according to the sum fixed for ballast ships.
Vessels which do not come into port, but remain in the road, pay no harbor dues (a) when they leave the road without cargoes or without having landed or taken in ballast; (b) if they unload or load according as ballast or cargo is discharged or taken in, the sum for loaded, respectively, for ballast ships once; (c) when they discharge and load, the full harbor dues according to the table of rates; (d) when they unload or take in only a small cargo, that is, a cargo which does not exceed the half of their tonnage, the price for the small cargo is the same as for loaded ships corresponding to the net tonnage and nothing for the other parts of their tonnage.
When vessels come into the harbor after having discharged on the road, no second payment of harbor dues takes place.
[Inclosure 3 in No. 99.]

Mr. Kickbusch to Mr. Uhl.

Sir: In reply to your request of June 10, 1896, relating to dues and other taxes imposed upon American vessels in Stettin, I have the honor to submit the following, viz:

All vessels arriving from any port upon entering and wishing to enjoy the uses and benefits of this harbor have two different taxes imposed upon them: (1) State taxes, collected by the German Imperial Government; (2) city tax, collected by the city of Stettin.

The Government or State tax is collected in accordance with following table. (See inclosure 2.)

exemption from dues.

Such vessels are exempt from harbor dues for entry and departure from the port which come into the harbor without cargo to look for freight and which leave the harbor without cargo.
Vessels which come into the harbor to gain information or to receive orders and leave again without having discharged or taken in cargo and without having sold the whole or part of the cargo.
Vessels which seek the harbor of refuge; that is, such which have been prevented from continuing their journey through damage suffered or other misfortunes (proved on inquiring) from the breaking up of the ice, storms, or contrary winds when they leave the harbor again in the direction of the sea with their cargoes and without having sold any part of it or having loaded other articles.
Vessels which go out to render assistance to ships stranded or in distress and then return, if they have not been used to discharge or save the wrecked goods.
Royal vessels or those belonging to the German Empire or the Prussian State, or vessels which forward only articles for account of the Kingdom or Empire or State without any secondary cargo, respectively, leave the harbor unloaded, either to load only such goods or after having exclusively discharged such articles in the harbor. In such cases under “C,” having passports.
Vessels which bring in stones from the bottom of the sea or those collected on the coast without any other secondary cargo or which go out unloaded to collect such stones.
Steamers used exclusively for towing.
Lighters when they serve to lighten or load vessels which have paid the harbor dues or are exempt from them according to the table of rates.
Boats which belong to the ships and all vessels not exceeding 4 cubic meters of tonnage.
All vessels which are only used for fishing.
For the use of the careening wharf:
For vessels which make use of the careening wharf (a) to be careened, for every cubic meter of tonnage, 2 pfennigs; (b) to be heeled over, every cubic meter of tonnage, 1 pfennig.
For the setting up of the mast of a vessel (a) of 200 cubic meters tonnage and about, 2 marks; (b) under 200 cubic meters of tonnage, 1.25 marks.
Pile and quay duties for vessels lying at anchor during the winter:
For vessels which stay in the harbor during the winter, for every cubic meter tonnage, 1 pfennig.

Note.—Vessels which do not anchor in the harbor, but which remain at anchor in the stream or fastened to a rope, are not subject to this duty.

supplementary provision.

The tonnage of the vessel is to be computed according to the ship-measurement regulations of July 5, 1872.

When the reduction of the burden in the hold is necessary for the application of the bill of rates, 10 hundredweights are to be calculated equal to 1 cubic meter of net tonnage.

City tax: The city collects in every instance 2 pfennigs per cubic meter upon the arrival of every vessel.

In addition to the foregoing taxes, the following table regulates the pilot dues:

Upon the arrival and departure of a vessel, for the first 280 cubic meters, 15 marks; for each 40 cubic meters over this amount, an additional 1 mark.

Bulwark dues are not collected from the vessels, but taxes for the use of them are imposed upon the goods.

The inclosed German tariff is a table of rates according to which the harbor, bulwark, and bridge dues are collected by the city of Stettin.

The charges that were imposed upon the foregoing vessels I was unable to learn, as the records had been destroyed. But, however, for instance, the steamship Robt. Dixon, Captain Gushing, of 3,719 cubic meters, would have the following charges to pay upon arriving and departing at this port:

3,719 cubic meters, 10 pfennigs 371.90
3,719 cubic meters, 10 pfennigs 371.90
3,719 cubic meters, 2 pfennigs 74.38
Pilot dues, first 280 cubic meters 15.00
For each following 40 cubic meters, at 1 mark 86.00
Total 899.18

The replies from the consular agencies are inclosed herewith.

I have, etc.,

F. W. Kickbusch, Jr.,
United States Vice and Deputy Consul.
[Inclosure 4 in No. 99.]

Mr. Gadeke to Mr. Kickbusch.

Dear Sir: In compliance with the request of the United States embassy at Berlin of June 10, instant, to report upon the tonnage dues and other taxes imposed since January 26, 1888, upon American vessels arrived here, I beg to inform you that no American vessels have entered this port for more than fifteen years, the whole time I have been in charge.

I have, etc.,

Conrad H. Gadeke,
United States Consular Agency.
[Page 151]
[Inclosure 5 in No. 99.]

Mr. Albrecht to Mr. Kickbusch.

Dear Sir: I beg to acknowledge receipt of your letter of 20th instant. As regards the report requested by the embassy, I beg to mention that only one American vessel arrived since the 26th day of January, 1888. At the end of September, 1889, arrived the American bark E. W. Stetson, Captain Knight, from Baltimore, and left this port for New York end of November. She was 1,106 registered tons, and paid here 10 pfennigs per cubic meter on entering, equal to 313 marks, and again 10 pfennigs per cubic meter on leaving this port, equal to 313 marks.

The reports, etc., will be handed to you in due time.

I remain, etc.

Philippe Albrecht,
United States Consul Agent.
[Inclosure 6 in No. 99.]

Light dues at Bremen and outlying ports.

All vessels of more than 200 cubic meters’ carrying capacity net, which come to or go from the river Weser, per cubic meter, 11 pfennigs (2½ cents).

All vessels with carrying capacity less than 200 cubic meters, free. Two hundred cubic meters are deducted in estimating the light charge on large vessels.

pier dues.

For each cubic meter net, per day, 5 pfennigs (1.20 cents).

dock dues at bremen and brake.

For each cubic meter net, for 15 days, inclusive, 3 pfennigs (three-fourths cent); for each cubic meter net, for the beginning of each additional 15 days, 1 pfennig (one-fourth cent).

Vessels arriving empty or in ballast provided to take in no cargo, free. Barges and pilot boats, free. Vessels the property of the Bremen State or German Empire, free. Vessels plying between the Weser and the North Sea bathing places, free. Vessels in docks for repairs, free. Dock charges at Bremerhaven for vessels of more than 170 cubic meters net, remaining in the dock 30 days, per cubic meter, 6 pfennigs (1½ cents); for remaining 60 days, per cubic meter, 12 pfennigs (3 cents): for the beginning of each succeeding 30 days, pfennig (one-fourth cent); for vessels of 40 to 170 cubic meters net, remaining 15 days, inclusive, 3 pfennigs (three-fourths cent); for the beginning of each 15 days, per cubic meter, 1 pfennig (one-fourth cent); for vessels under 40 cubic meters net, remaining 15 days, 30 pfennigs (7½ cents); for the beginning of each succeeding 15 days, 15 pfennigs (3¾ cents).

Rafts for the beginning of every fifteen days, per cubic meter, 3 pfennigs (three-fourths cent). The time is reckoned from the day following passing through the locks.

Vessels in the signal service or which lease the locks for the purpose of repairing the river buoys of vessels which return before they have passed the first river buoys, for the purpose of taking on cargo or the cause of ice, bad weather will not be charged as newly arriving vessels, but will pay the same as they would have paid had they remained in the dock.


All incoming or outgoing vessels of whatever size which pass Horumer Siel on the Jade and go as far as Dorumer Tief on the right shore of the Weser, and which do not pay the foregoing harbor charges, are charged for every ton (1,000 kilograms) of cargo boarded or discharged, 8 pfennigs (2 cents).

The following are exempt from tonnage charges: Tugs towing other vessels, regular river passenger steamers, skiffs and barges navigating the Weser and Jade which do not discharge goods on land or receive goods from land, but which transfer goods from or to seagoing vessels. River vessels which carry ballast for other vessels, empty river boats, fishing boats, pilot boats, vessels which are the property of the State or Empire, and vessels going to sea from Bremen which have been taxed at Bremen will be credited with the same in reckoning charges at other outlying Weser ports and vice versa.

[Page 152]

lock charges.

For passing through the locks once:

Vessels with capacity up to 40 cubic meters 1 =$0.24
Vessels with capacity from 41 to 170 cubic meters 3 =.72
Vessels with capacity from 171 to 350 cubic meters 8 =1.92
Vessels with capacity from 351 to 1,000 cubic meters 20 =5.00
Vessels with capacity from 1,001 to 5,000 cubic meters 40 =10.00
More than 5,000 cubic meters 60 =15.00

Vessels leaving the clocks for the purpose of laying to the Weser or Geiste piers and obliged to return before they have entirely passed the locks will be charged for one passage only.

Lock charges are not imposed on vessels going from one dock to another. Vessels which are exempt from dock and tonnage charges are also exempt from lock charges.

dry-dock charges.

For the use of the dry dock, for each cubic meter net, 5 pfennigs (1¼ cents).

pilot charges.

For piloting vessels into and out of the dock:

For ships up to 250 cubic meters 6.00 = $1.44
For ships over—
250 up to 500 cubic meters 7.50 =1.80
500 up to 1,200 cubic meters 11.50 =2.76
1,200 up to 2,000 cubic meters 15.50 =3.72
2,000 up to 3,000 cubic meters 18.00 =4.32
3,000 cubic meters and for ocean vessels 23.00 =5.52

Boats giving assistance, official boats going out or returning under the order of the harbor master for the purpose of securing assistance, including towing, up to 250 cubic meters, 4.50 marks ($1.08); an additional tax not to exceed one-half of the regular state tax is imposed for extraordinary conditions. For holding vessels in the docks for the purpose of collecting pilot dues:

Vessels up to 600 cubic meters 1.50 =$0.36
Vessels from 600 cubic meters 3.50 =.84
Vessels over 2,000 cubic meters 5.00 =1.20

Vessels which are held to regulate compass or to test their screws pay double, and into the Lloyd dock three times the above charge.

George Keenan,
United States Consul.
[Inclosure 7 in No. 99.]

Arrival and departure of American vessels at the United States consulate at Bremerhaven, Brake, and Bremen, from January 26, 1888, to June 20, 1896.

Name. Date. Class. Tonnage. Where belonging. When built. Where built. Owner.
Vessel. Master.
Hagerstown Otto Meyer 1888. Apr. 1 Ship 1,808.25 New York 1874 Richmond. Theo. Ruger, New York.
Pharos P. Reitzensten. July 15 Ship 1,908.65 do 1877 Kennebunk. Do.
Progress F. M. Faircloth. Nov. 6 Steamship. 1,445.23 do I. M. Waterbury, Norfolk, Va.
H. L. Routh Henry Kirby Nov. 17 Bark 972.14 do 1865 Brooklyn W. Carey and others.
Gracie D. Buchanan.* 1889. Apr. 1 1,083.89 Bermudas.
John H. Crandon. David H. Givan. Mar. 21 Brigantine. 494.67 New York 1875 Columbia Falls, Me. David H. Givan and others.

* Arrived at Brake.

† Arrived at Bremen. Sold at sheriff’s sale June 12, 1895, to Helmuth Mentz, a Prussian citizen living at Bostock.

[Page 153]
Name of vessel Cargo Charges at port. Amount. Where bound. Date of clearance.
Inward Outward
Description. Value.
Hagerstown 11,500 barrels of refined coal oil. Ballast Harbor fees. $73.15 Melbourne 1888. May 18
Boat help 4.76
Harbor pilot 5.47
Examination of cargo. 4.05
Removal of trash .78
Light and tonnage. 117.17
Police petroleum watch. 49.98
Pharos 12,000 barrels of refined coal oil. do Harbor fees. 77.22 Cardiff Aug. 27
Boat help 4.76
Harbor pilot 5.47
Examination of cargo. 4.05
Removal of trash .78
Light and tonnage. 123.92
Police petroleum watch. 42.07
Progress Cotton do Harbor fees 58.46 Hamburg Nov. 12
Boat pilot 9.52
Harbor pilot 5.47
Changing to another wharf. 1.19
Examination of cargo. 4.88
Removal of trash 3.57
Light and tonnage. 92.68
Police petroleum watch. 12.85
H. L. Routh Tobacco General cargo. Harbor fees. 39.33 Dec. 13
Boat help 3.92
Harbor pilot 4.28
Changing to another wharf. 2.38
Examination of cargo. 4.88
Removal of trash .78
Light and tonnage. 60.79
Gracie D. Buchanan.* Light dues 72.16 1889. Apr. 26
Dock dues 43.12
John H. Crandon.† Cedar timber $15,000 Light-house and beacon. 28.58
Incoming tug 48.69
Incoming sea pilot. 28.37
Incoming river pilot. 8.59
Harbor pilot for changing wharf. 1.42
Tug assistance 3.57
Discharging expenses. 81.55
Dock charges 10.38
Measuring charges 55.49
Harbor dues 15.47

* Arrived at Brake.

† Arrived at Bremen. Sold at sheriff’s sale June 12, 1895, to Helmuth Mentz, a Prussian citizen living at Bostock.

[Seal, consulate of the United States.]

George Keenan,
United States Consul.