Mr. Day to Mr. Tower.

No. 713.]

Sir: I have the honor to acknowledge the receipt of the note of the British ambassador of the 20th instant, in answer to the Department’s No. 704, of the 18th, relative to sealing regulations for British vessels in Bering Sea. Sir Julian Pauncefote states that the offer of the Government of the United States to give to British vessels the benefit of Articles IV, V, and VI of the regulations controlling American sealing vessels for the season of 1897 does not answer the inquiry of his Government as to whether or not this Government will accept the arrangement of 1894 for the coming season of 1897.

I have to say in reply, as stated in the Department’s note of the 18th [Page 296] instant, that the provisions of the arrangements of 1894 were necessarily of a temporary and provisional nature, and are deemed by me inadequate to properly carry out the intent and purpose of the Paris award. I regret, therefore, to have to state the proposition to agree to a renewal of said arrangements is not acceptable to this Government.

Trusting that the decision of the British Government as to the offer to give the British sealers the benefit of Articles IV, V, and VI of the regulations of 1897 will receive early and favorable consideration, because of the limited time in which to issue instructions to carry out said regulations, I have, etc.,

William R. Day,
Acting Secretary.