Mr. Woodford to the President.

Nos. 49, 50.]

Dear Mr. President: This Tuesday morning, March 22, I saw Minister Moret at his house and had conversation which is embodied in my telegraphic report to you, No. 49, of this date. I then telegraphed such report to you in cipher, as follows:

Madrid, March 22, 1898.

President McKinley, Washington:

My No. 49. This morning (Tuesday) I saw the minister of the colonies at his house. Asked him whether I should talk officially or personally. He replied, personally. I commenced by saying: “I have sent a telegram, which I read to you March 19, and have received reply. I ought to now say to you that the report on the Maine is in the hands of the President. I am not to-day authorized to disclose its character or conclusions, but I am authorized to say to you that beyond and above the destruction of the Maine, unless some satisfactory agreement is reached within a very few days, which will assure immediate and honorable peace in Cuba, the President must at once submit the whole question of the relations between the United States and Spain, including the matter of the Maine, to the decision of Congress. I will telegraph immediately to the President any suggestion that Spain may make, and I hope to receive within a very few days some definite proposition that shall mean immediate peace.”

After brief and courteous conversation, he asked me if I was authorized to say officially to the Spanish minister of foreign affairs what I had just said unofficially to him. I replied that I was so authorized, and, at his request and on his assurance that he believed it would be in the interest of early peace, I sent official note to Spanish minister for foreign affairs asking interview at his house on Wednesday afternoon, March 23, with minister of colonies present as interpreter, and will then repeat officially what I said unofficially this morning, and will receive any suggestions that may be made and telegraph the same to you, without committing you or our Government in any manner.

Should I be asked to suggest what might be acceptable to you, please instruct me by telegraph as to my answer.


This interview will be granted. Minister Moret will be present. I shall repeat verbatim and unofficially to Ministers Gullon and Moret what I said unofficially to Moret this morning. I shall then leave them to do the talking, and will report what shall be said.

Faithfully yours,

Stewart L. Woodford.