Mr. Adee to Mr. Bowen.

No. 82.]

I have to acknowledge the receipt of your two telegrams of the 24th ultimo.

I inclose for your information copy of a letter from the Acting Secretary of the Navy, forwarding the report made by the commanding officer of the Marietta on the subject.

I am, etc.,

Alvey A. Adee, Acting Secretary.

Mr. Taylor to Mr. Hay.

Sir: I have the honor to inclose for your information a copy of a letter from the commanding officer of the Marietta, dated at La Guaira, Venezuela, the 22d instant, relating to the use of the American flag by the gunboat Restaurador.

Very respectfully,

H. C. Taylor, Acting Secretary.

Lieutenant-Commander Diehl to the Secretary of the Navy.

Sir: * * * The commanding officer of the Venezuelan gunboat Restaurador called upon me to-day and gave the following explanation, viz: That he did fly the American flag at the fore on approaching Ciudad Bolivar; that his reasons tor so doing were that he desired to send a message ashore to the consular officials; that he could not use a white flag of truce, because that flag is carried by the revolutionists; that his object was to approach near enough to send a messenger without being fired upon; that he did not know that he was committing any fault or discourtesy toward the United States. He assured me that the American flag was hauled down before a shot was fired either from shore or from the ship.

I cautioned the commanding officer of the Restaurador that I could not approve of his using the American flag in any except a purely legitimate way, and requested that it be not repeated. He expressed his regrets and assured me that it would not occur again.

I am inclined to believe that the American flag was hauled down before any firing began, and recommend to the Department that this incident be closed.

Very respectfully,

S. W. B. Diehl,
Lieutenant-Commander, U. S. Navy, Commanding and Senior Officer Present.