The Secretary of State to Minister Townsend.

No. 211.]

Sir: I inclose herewith a copy of a letter addressed to this Department by Mr. Robert D. Benedict, president of the Maritime Law Association of the United States, embodying suggestions in regard to the [Page 70] projects which are to be considered by the International Maritime Conference at Brussels.a

As these suggestions have the concurrence of the Department of Commerce and Labor, they may be accepted as the views of the Government of the United States. This Department thinks, therefore, that instead of signing the proposed conventions with the reservation stated in its No. 209 of the 1st instant it would be preferable for the delegates of the United States to have provision made in the conventions for subsequent adhesion by nonsignatory governments, and thus leave the matters open for legislative action.

The Department will be pleased to have you and Mr. Goodrich freely consult it by telegraph as occasion may require after his arrival in Brussels.

I am, etc.,

John Hay.
  1. Not printed.