Mr. Hay to Mr. Wu .
Washington , January 13, 1899 .
Sir: Referring to our interview of the 23d ultimo, in which you set forth for the consideration of this Government certain complaints of ill treatment of Chinese subjects at the hands of the agent of the Treasury Department at Honolulu, I have the honor to inform you that I am in receipt of a letter from the Secretary of the Treasury, dated the 17th instant, in answer to mine of the 23d ultimo, bringing the matter to his attention.
In his letter the Secretary of the Treasury says that the regulations under which the agent of his Department at Honolulu has been operating were based on an opinion of the Attorney-General to the effect that the laws of the United States and the treaty with China relating to the exclusion of Chinese are under the provisions of paragraph 8 of the resolution adopted by Congress July 7, 1898, to be held applicable to Chinese persons applying for admission to the Hawaiian Islands.
The Secretary of the Treasury adds that since the receipt of my letter his Department has been advised of the tenor of a decision recently made by the supreme court of Hawaii which may necessitate a further consideration of the subject; that a copy of the decision will be sent to the Attorney-General, and that a full reply to my communication will therefore be deferred until that officer can be consulted in the premises.