Mr. Dupuy de Lôme to Mr. Sherman.


Mr. Secretary: In response to your note dated the 6th instant, I have the honor to state to you that, being desirous of knowing the measures adopted with respect to the reconcentrados, and impressed, as I could not but be, by the agitation which for obvious motives is kept up by the press, besides being aware that the instructions given to General Blanco by His Majesty’s Government, a summary of which has been made public, contains especial and positive references to such reconcentrados, I inquired by telegraph what measures had been adopted or were under consideration with a view to adoption, and the Governor-General of the Island of Cuba, while stating that he can not send the text of the decrees (bandos) by telegraph, because of their great length, says to me that—

Extensive zones of cultivation have been organized; food is furnished to them daily by the State; work is allotted to them; they will be well treated; they may be employed by the proprietors of estates (hacienda-dos); they will be furnished means of transportation; they are being looked after and protected with solicitude and care; provincial protective boards have been planned and are already organized, and these will continue to be organized in the provinces where they may not yet be working, which boards are charged with the procurement of resources for providing for their needs. Subscriptions have been started with this same object, and finally, everything that can humanly be done is being done.

The Governor-General likewise states to me that a decree has been promulgated which not only permits agricultural operations, harvesting of crops, etc., but counseling the same and offering due protection thereof, both civil and military; that not a moment is being lost in giving heed to all present necessities, and that he is occupying himself with all these things and giving to them personal attention with especial interest.

In the short time that has elapsed since the change of policy took place, it has been and is impossible to do more, and with the greater reason inasmuch as it is needful that, in addition to official action, private charity should come to aid in diminishing the sufferings caused by the war, since to cause the return, without sufficient precautions, of the reconcentrados to their homes would only increase their sufferings instead of diminishing them.

I avail myself, etc.,

E. Dupuy de Lôme.