The Secretary of State to Ambassador Tower.

No. 438.]

Sir: I have to acknowledge the receipt of your No. 798, of the 14th ultimo, reporting the case of Maurice Kahn, a native of Alsace, naturalized as an American, who has been fined 600 marks for nonperformance of military service, and whose application for the removal of that fine has recently been rejected by the German authorities on the ground that as he was born in Alsace he is held to be still a German subject.

You refer to this case as being similar to those of Emil B. Kauffmann (Foreign Relations 1896, p. 186), Casimir Hartmann (Foreign Relations 1897, p. 230), Jacob Roos (Foreign Relations 1903, p. 442), and Emil Vibert (Foreign Relations 1904, p. 317), and note that the German Government’s action in Kahn’s case indicates its attitude in [Page 472] regard to the connection of the Reichsland provinces of Alsace and Lorraine with the Empire and confirms its determination, hitherto frequently announced, not to admit that the treaty of naturalization with this country, entered into in 1868, extends to those provinces as well as to other provinces of the Empire.

You will, notwithstanding the present status of the matter, keep Mr. Kahn’s case in mind and continue your efforts in his behalf, making it clear that this government does not acquiesce in the contention of the German Government as to the nonapplicability of the Bancroft naturalization treaties to Alsace-Lorraine.

I am, etc.,

Elihu Root.