Mr. Hay to Count de Lichterveld.

No. 199.]

Sir: Referring to your note of the 7th instant, asking for permission for the firm of Ingenohl, of Antwerp, to make certain purchases of tobacco at Manila, and for this purpose to charter one or more neutral vessels with which to engage in the coasting trade during the continuance of hostilities, I now have the honor to inform you that it is not deemed advisable by the War Department to grant permission at this time to foreign vessels to engage in the coasting trade in the Philippine Islands.

Accept, etc.,

John Hay.