Mr. Hay to Mr. Thieriot.

No. 29.]

Sir: Referring to your No. 55, of the 26th ultimo, I inclose copy of a letter from the J. C. Ayer Company, of Lowell, Mass., urging that one more effort may be made to obtain authorization for the sale of certain of their medicines.

I am, etc.,

John Hay.

J. C. Ayer Company to Mr. Hill.

Sir: We beg to acknowledge the receipt of your favor of the 13th instant, advising that before the Department’s instructions of the 23d ultimo reached the United States chargé d’affaires at Lisbon the Portuguese authorities had, according to the chargé’s statement, refused a market for our medicines. We are in receipt of advices to the same effect from our resident agents.

We have to thank you most sincerely for your many kindnesses in this matter, and trust you will pardon us if we trespass on your attention a little further as follows:

Our preparations affected by this arbitrary decision of the Portuguese authorities are Ayer’s Cherry Pectoral and Ayer’s Sarsaparilla. These medicines have been, sold in Portugal for fully thirty years. During this time a large demand has been created, the medicines having been recommended by a large number of Portuguese physicians and medical men, and they have gained considerable acceptance among the Portuguese people. It is, therefore, a serious blow to our business in Portugal to have these goods shut out of the market there at this late date.

Our resident agents at Oporto, Messrs. James Cassels & Co., inform us that the reason given by the council of health for refusing their approval of Ayer’s Cherry Pectoral and Ayer’s Sarsaparilla is that they are secret medicines. This is not true. The formulas are always available to the members of the medical profession, to whom same are freely sent on application. Messrs. James Cassels & Co. further report to us that in November, 1899, “Dr. Williams’s Pink Pills,” a British preparation, was not approved of by the council of health of Lisbon, but the British minister requested that it should be approved of, and the Portuguese Government ordered the council of health to reconsider their decision, with the result that “Dr. Williams’s Pink Pills” received approval, although the formula is actually kept a secret.

Messrs. Cassels & Co. say that if the United States minister at Lisbon were politely, but firmly, to request the Portuguese Government to approve of our medicines, stating the fact of their having been sold for so many years in Portugal, and of their being recommended by a large number of Portuguese medical men, and that our medicines are not secret medicines, the formulas being supplied to medical men on application therefor, then, even now, it is probable that the Portuguese Government would ask the council of health to reconsider their decision.

If we may trespass on your kindness to this extent we shall esteem it a great favor; and hoping that you will instruct our minister at Lisbon in accordance with the above,

We have, etc.,

J. C. Ayer Company.