Ambassador Storer to the Secretary of State.

No. 294.]

Sir: I have the honor to report that the firm of Abeles Brothers, of Eger, Bohemia, have informed the embassy by letter dated December 5, but just received, a copy of which is inclosed, that a sample shipment of salted beef, consigned from Chicago to Eger, which had been duly inspected and certified by the United States Department of Agriculture, has been refused admittance to the dominions of Austria-Hungary by the customs officials of Eger, pursuant to orders of the Austrian ministry of the interior.

Without waiting to report the case to the department, I have ventured to ask for an explanation of this action of the customs officials, and beg to inclose a copy of my letter to the minister of foreign affairs.

I have, etc.,

Bellamy Storer.
[Inclosure 1.—Translation.]

Abeles Brothers to the American Embassy.

We had intended to import American salted beef from Chicago to Austria, and as an experiment had a cask of the said salted beef sent to us. The Austrian authorities, namely, the ministry of finance, in accord with the ministry of the interior, have prohibited us from importing this meat, although we furnished an inspection certificate from the American authorities; and also stated that we were ready to have the condition of the meat as regards health examined here in Austria.

The Austrian ministry of the interior has prevented the importation of this meat, although there is in existence no express (legal) prohibition for the same, and we beg to inclose herewith a copy of the official decision in this matter in order that you may learn the view of the Austrian ministry of the interior.

As the Government of the United States of America should have an interest in the exportation of large quantities of such meat, and in the importation into Austria especially, we bring to your knowledge the groundless prohibition of such importation on the part of the Austrian Government, and will be thankful to the embassy if it would induce the Austrian ministry of the interior to withdraw this import prohibition.

Very respectfully, yours,

Abeles Brothers.
[Page 44]
[Inclosure 2.—Copy.]

Ambassador Storer to the Minister of Foreign Affairs.

F. O.
No. 179.

Your Excellency: I have the honor to bring to the attention of your excellency that it is reported to this embassy that the imperial and royal customs officials of Eger have recently refused to allow to enter into the imperial and royal dominions a cask of salted beef produced and prepared in the United States, which had been officially examined by the United States authorities before leaving the United States, and which has been consigned directly to Eger from Chicago, in the United States.

As I am ignorant of the reasons for this action on the part of the imperial royal customs authorities, and as the exclusion of this shipment of salted beef would appear to be in violation of the terms of the treaty of 1829 between Austria-Hungary and the United States, I have the honor to request your excellency to cause an investigation of the circumstances to be made, and if the facts are such as have been reported, to be good enough to inform me of the reasons for such exclusion.

I take this occasion, etc.,

Bellamy Storer,
American Ambassador.