Mr. McDonald to Mr. Sherman.

No. 294.]

Sir: I have the honor to report that yesterday I interposed unofficially in behalf of the Jews of this city, who, by concerted action, were subjected to riot and mob violence by the Mohammedans. In the morning I received a message from Rev. Mr. Ward, one of the American missionaries, saying that a massacre, or at least a persecution, was going on in the Jewish quarter, and asking me to do all I could, to stop it. I immediately drove to the palace and had an interview with the Amin-ed-Dovlet, the chief of the Shah’s ministers. I told him what I had heard, and, without any authority in the matter, I had come in the interest of humanity to ask that immediate steps be taken for the protection [Page 430]of the assaulted people—that they were a race without a country or government of their own to defend them; that they were, as a rule, harmless and inoffensive, and I in the emergency felt like speaking strongly for them in behalf of myself and my country, where so many of them are domiciled. His excellency replied that he was informed there had been some serious trouble; some Jews had been beaten and roughly treated; that they had been required to have their hair cut in a certain way, and to put on a red badge to designate their race: but he was informed by the governor of the city that the maltreatment had ceased and order had been restored. He said that he himself was a friend of the Jews and would endeavor to see that they were not mistreated. I then thanked him and retired. On reaching the palace grounds I was surrounded by a number of Jewish women who had come for redress, and who were loud in their complaints and grateful in their expressions for what I was trying to do for them. Later in the day Mr. Tyler, interpreter and vice-consul general, drove to the Jewish quarter and said he found all quiet. I understand that the English legation also took some steps in the matter.

I have, etc.,

Alex. McDonald.