Minister Rockhill to the Secretary of State.

No. 213.]

Sir: In continuation of my dispatch No. 178 of December 23d last, concerning the long-pending negotiations for the revision of the rules for the mixed court in the international settlement at Shanghai, I now beg to transmit further correspondence with our consul-general on the same matter, and in continuation of that already sent you in my previous dispatch.

I deem it necessary to place before you all the data I possess on this subject, as I think it will develop into a most far-reaching one, affecting the whole status of the Shanghai international settlement in its relation with the Chinese Government. The position taken by a prominent part of the British residents in Shanghai is clearly set forth in the inclosed editorial from the leading British paper of the locality.

The solution of the question of the revision of the rules for the government of the mixed court, which bids fair to be reached shortly by the diplomatic body and the Chinese Government, and which will be substantially in agreement with the amended rules accepted provisionally by the Department of State in its telegraphic instruction to this legation of April 15, 1902, will not give satisfaction to all the foreign community of Shanghai and the agitation for further liberties will continue.

I trust that the inclosed correspondence will enable the department to get a correct understanding of this question which has already been the direct cause of so much trouble and friction.

I have, etc.,

W. W. Rockhill.
[Inclosure 1.]

Mr. Rodgers to Mr. Rockhill.

Sir: I have the honor to acknowledge receipt of your telegram of December 15, reading as follows:

American Consul, Shanghai:

“Fifteen. Your cipher telegram thirteenth is not clear if you mean consular committee unanimously agreed in favor of confining Chinese females in the female jail in the municipal jail. Report fully.


And also to confirm my reply thereto of the same date, reading as follows:

Rockhill, Peking:

“Mixed court female jail has been agreed to, not municipal. Other demands reported prevent opening of the court.


James L. Rodgers.
[Page 386]
[Inclosure 2.]

Mr. Rodgers to Mr. Rockhill.

Sir: I have the honor to acknowledge receipt of your No. 471 of December 21 last, in relation to the mixed court matters. In reply thereto I beg to say that the minutes of the consular meeting of July 26, 1905, as quoted by you are wrong. When in June the question of the place of confinement of female prisoners came up in connection with other issues of the taot’ai against the municipal council, it was acknowledged by the taot’ai and by the mixed court magistrates that there was no place for their confinement at the mixed court, but the promise was given that one should be constructed. The question had never been prominent in comparison with that of the matter of the police in court, of supervision of punishment and the control of the prisoners. However, when the subject had been discussed early in July I went to the mixed court and there inspected the site and the foundation of the female jail. At the meeting of the consular body, July 26, when the matter was again mentioned, I stated that the jail was in course of construction. It was then agreed that the senior consul should see the taot’ai and explain that it was only desired to use the female portion of the municipal jail until the Chinese jail was ready. No formal action was taken. However, Mr. Potier, it seems, thought the minutes should contain some record of the subject, and that which you have quoted was apparently the result of Doctor Knappe’s version, it being absolutely at variance from the understanding, at least so I maintain. Again, on October 5, the subject came up and I reported the jail ready, but the taot’ai had not so notified the senior consul. It was my impression, however, that it was to be used, and it would have been had the American assessor been given a chance to send the female prisoners there. The police attended to that.

As to the rules of 1869. The present procedure, which was adopted years ago, or which was the result of years of gradual change, differs largely from the rules of 1869, although by courtesy they are still supposed to exist. By agreement between Messrs. Goodnow, Warren, and Schnitzler, the American, English, and German consuls, respectively, the basis of the present procedure was inaugurated in 1901, and Mr. Goodnow has stated to me that their action was approved by the diplomatic body, a statement which was confirmed by Sir Pelham Warren when I produced in a consular meeting the original copy of the revised rules.

* * * * * * *

In conclusion I beg to inform you that the court was open to-day, with Mr. Twyman sitting as assessor. The municipal council has not made any concession as to the presence of the police who participated in the disturbance of December 18.

James L. Rodgers.
[Inclosure 3.]

Mr. Rockhill to Mr. Rodgers.

Sir: I have to acknowledge the receipt of your dispatch No. 172 of December 27 last in relation to the mixed court matters.

You say that the minutes of the consular meeting of July 26, 1905, as quoted by me are wrong. I can not see how this can be, as I quoted from an official copy sent the British minister by the British consul-general at Shanghai. The diplomatic representatives here have all assumed that these minutes stated the action of the consular body at Shanghai on July 26 last in reference to the custody of Chinese female prisoners correctly, and on the 6th instant the dean of the diplomatic body sent the senior consul at Shanghai a note, a copy of which I inclose in translation, embodying the views of the foreign representatives here concerning said decision.

You further state that the 1869 rules for the mixed court in the settlement of Shanghai are only supposed to exist by courtesy. While I admit that many changes and additions have been made to said rules since they were first accepted [Page 387]by the Chinese Government and the diplomatic representatives of the powers in 1869, such changes and additions have never been adopted by mutual consent of China and the powers. I fail to see how any amendment could have permanently binding force unless so agreed upon.

* * * * * * *

W. W. Rockhill.
[Subinclosure to inclosure 3.]

Baron von Mumm to Mr. Kleimenow.

Mr. Consul-General: In view of the late incidents at Shanghai my honorable colleagues have requested me to make the following statement to the consular body.

The representatives of the powers have learned with astonishment that the consular body have decided in a meeting held on the 26th of last July that the assessors at the mixed court should send to the municipal jail Chinese women condemned by that court to be imprisoned.

Their attention has also been called to a letter sent by the taot’ai under date of the 10th of June to the dean of the consular body, and which has just been published in the North China Daily News, and in which this office formally refuses to agree that condemned Chinese women shall be imprisoned in the municipal jail.

My honorable colleagues have requested me to recall to you that by Article I of the rules for the mixed court, it is the magistrate who is authorized to confine Chinese prisoners.

These rules were adopted in 1869 by the foreign representatives at Peking and the Chinese Government, to whom it belongs to modify them by common consent. The consuls are not empowered to suspend its application nor introduce changes therein without the approbation of the representatives of the powers and the Chinese Government; such action would conflict with all the conventions which regulate the relations between the Chinese and foreigners in open ports.

While calling your attention to the facts and principles set forth above, the diplomatic body is of the opinion that the decision taken by the consular body on the 26th of July not having been approved by the representatives of the powers in Peking, must be considered null and void.

I avail myself of this opportunity, etc.,

[Inclosure 4.]

Mr. Rockhill to Mr. Rodgers.

Sir: In further reference to your dispatch No. 172, of December 27 last, and to my reply thereto—No. 502, of the 9th instant—I fear that you are under the misapprehension that the “amended rules” for the mixed court of Shanghai of “1901,” to which you refer in your dispatch, were accepted by the Chinese Government, and are consequently in force at the present time. Such is not the fact, as shown by the correspondence between your consulate-general and this legation.

In 1901 a committee of the consular body at Shanghai, under instruction from the diplomatic representatives here, prepared a set of amended rules for the mixed court of the international settlement at Shanghai. These amendments, having been agreed to by the consular body, were forwarded by Mr. Goodnow, then our consul-general, to Mr. Conger, on February 25, 1902.

This basis was considered by the foreign representatives here, and by them submitted to their respective governments for approval as such, and on July 1, 1902, Mr. Conger was able to inform Mr. Goodnow that they had been provisionally accepted by our Government. On September 16, 1902, Mr. Goodnow telegraphed to Mr. Conger, asking the status of the negotiations on this matter, and Mr. Conger in his telegram of the same date informed him that the diplomatic [Page 388]representatives had failed to come to an agreement concerning them. (See Mr. Conger’s No. 1587, of September 16, 1902, to Mr. Goodnow.)

This inability of the diplomatic representatives to agree on the amended rules submitted to them by the consular body at Shanghai was only overcome in the latter part of 1904, and it was only on December 22 of that year that they were able—the French and Mexican representatives excepted—to send to the Chinese foreign office a joint note embodying the amendments they deemed ncessary to the rules of 1869.

The subsequent stages in these negotiations down to the date of my writing are briefly related to you in my dispatch No. 406 of November 14 last and the inclosures thereto.

Since then the Chinese Government has, as I also informed you in my No. 407 of November 14 last, forwarded to the diplomatic representatives its proposals of amendments to the rules of 1868, and these are now before the diplomatic representatives for consideration and reply to the Chinese foreign office.

It appears clearly from the above that there are no “amended rules” in force at the present time, though, as I stated in my dispatch No. 502 of the 9th instant, temporary provisional changes may have been agreed upon locally in the interest of expediting the work of this important court; but that the present procedure can have been inaugurated in 1901, as you say, on the simple agreement of the consuls, without the approval of their ministers, to say nothing of that of the Chinese Government, is of course quite inadmissible.

For your further information and in connection with your statement in dispatch No. 172 that the “minutes of the consular body’s meeting of July 26, 1905, as quoted by you (me) are wrong,” I inclose a copy of the minutesa from which I quoted, the original of which was signed by the senior consul, Doctor Knappe, and is dated August 1, 1905.

W. W. Rockhill.
[Inclosure 5.]

Mr. Rodgers to Mr. Rockhill.

Sir: I have the honor to acknowledge the receipt of your No. 504 of January 10 in relation to the rules of the mixed court, Shanghai, and to say in reply that the amended rules to which I referred in my No. 172 of December 27, 1905, are apparently not those forwarded February 25, 1902. These amended rules, of which I inclose a copy, have been in full force and effect since their date, and I am told were agreed to at Peking.

James L. Rodgers.

[Subinclosure to No. 5.]

To the mixed court assessors, Messrs. Bourne, Barchet, Von Vardnuin, Mayers:

Gentlemen: The mixed court rules of April 20, 1869, having become obsolete, and revision thereof being a work of time, we have to instruct you in future to follow the subjoined two rules, which have become firmly established by practice, and to regard them as if they were incorporated with the said rules of April 20, 1869.

All Chinese arrested in the settlement must be brought up before the mixed court magistrate sitting with a foreign consular assessor as a court of first instance.
Should the magistrate and assessor not be able to agree on a judgment in any case, civil or criminal before them, there can be no decree, but there must be reference to the taot’ai and consul-general.

Every party to a civil criminal proceeding in the mixed court at Shanghai may be heard in person, or by attorney of his choice, or by both. Should any [Page 389]party desire to be heard by attorney he shall apply to the said court for permission to be so heard, and the granting of such permission and the presence of such attorney shall be under the exclusive control and discretion of the court.

John Goodnow,
U. S. Consul-General
Pelham Warren,
H. B. M’s. Consul-General
Acting Consul-General for Germany.

[Inclosure 6.]

Mr. Rodgers to Mr. Rockhill.

Sir: I have the honor to acknowledge receipt of your No. 502 of January 9, 1906, in relation to the mixed-court matter.

* * * * * * *

In this connection I beg to acknowledge receipt of the copy of the letter to the dean of the diplomatic body to senior Consul Kleimenow. Its contents have been noted with interest and satisfaction.

I beg to submit herewith a copy of a police report to the municipal council. It will throw some light upon the conditions that existed, and will also show that even the German assessor thought there was doubt as to the much mooted decision of July 26.

There is certainly the necessity for reform, and my invariable contention has been that it should be given by modern and up-to-date rules from Peking.

James L. Rodgers.
[Subinclosure to No. 6.]

Police report on proceedings at the mixed court.

summary of punishments.

Male. Female. Total.
Imprisonment only 67 1 68
Fined 32 32
Total 99 1 100
Cases left to court 9 9
Remanded 14 14
Released on security 10 10
Dismissed 8 8
Deported 1 1
Sent to Sinza refuge 2 2
Total number cases brought before court 142 2 144


On Monday, the 4th instant, the number of police cases brought before Assistant Magistrate Ching and Mr. Twyman was unusually large and several cases remained untried. On Tuesday Mr. Arnold and Magistrate Kwan inquired why these were not brought before them. They were informed that the captain superintendent of police had ordered the cases in question to be taken before the British assessor only. Most of them were disposed of on Wednesday, but eight prisoners remained over until Friday morning. The magistrate sentenced [Page 390]five of them, then refused to hear the other three. Mr. Twyman marked the charge sheet: “Magistrate refused to hear case till he had obtained the taot’ai’s permission.” The magistrate also recorded a minute on the Chinese sheet to this effect: “Brought up at this court from the police on Monday, but owing to being late when brought up there was no trial. Not brought up on Tuesday. Brought up on Wednesday, but being late again no trial. Not brought up on Thursday. Brought up again on Friday, but it is deemed unfit for trial. Awaiting instructions from the taot’ai.”

At 2.30 p.m. on the 4th instant a woman named Zung Ling Sze was tried before Assistant Magistrate Ching and Mr. Bristow for illegally buying a girl for the purpose of prostitution. She was ordered to pay 800 taels to the Door of Hope and to be deported to Soochow. The magistrate would not allow the prisoner to be handed over to the police, saying that she should be deported by the mixed court. The inspector on duty replied that the usual practice in such cases was for the police to carry out all sentences of deportation to a treaty port. Mr. Bristow concurred in this view and said that the woman was to be taken back to the police station. The police were ordered to remove her. The magistrate would not permit it, saying: “You can not take her away until this matter has been dismissed. If I am wrong you can report me to the taot’ai, but I must obey orders. The woman is not to be treated as a criminal. She will be deported by the court and the police can witness the deportation.” Mr. Bristow and the inspector objected and the constables removed the woman, a certain amount of force being necessary, as she was unwilling to leave the court. The magistrate stood in the doorway to prevent their passage, but after much argument consented that the police should keep her in custody and bring her before him at 9 in the morning. The following day the money was handed to the Door of Hope in court, and the woman was escorted by the police to the Soochow launch.

At 6.10 p.m. on the 6th instant, a native entered the sergeant’s room and commenced opening and shutting the windows and doors, and made himself generally objectionable. On being asked what he wanted, he said he was about to put locks on the windows. The sergeant objected as it would stop all ventilation. The man went away, and Magistrate Kwan entered and asked the sergeant what he meant by objecting to his putting locks on the windows of his own court. The sergeant said he would be glad of some ventilation in the room, to which the magistrate replied that he could go outside and get it, and added: “You have really no rights here at all. The taot’ai is very angry with me; especially about the deportation affair last night. He accuses me of siding with the foreigners and considers me a very weak man for my position because I don’t trouble you more.”

On Saturday, the 9th instant, a woman was brought before Assistant Magistrate Ching and Doctor Merklinghaus on a charge of ill treating a boy. The police officer on duty referred the assessor to the senior consul’s letter to the taot’ai of the 22d of June last. After consulting with the magistrate, Doctor Merklinghaus said he would remand the case for a fortnight, that the instructions of the consular body of the assessors were not at all clear, and that those given on the 26th of July last were to the effect that female prisoners should be sent to the municipal jail as long as the accommodation of the court was unsuitable. He added that the magistrate informed him that the new cells for females at the court were now ready. The woman was removed to the municipal jail.

summary of prisoners in the mixed court cells.

Sixty-three male and five female prisoners are detained in the mixed court cells.

[Inclosure 7.]

Mr. Rodgers to Mr. Rockhill.

Sir: I have the honor to state that I am informed confidentially by the Taot’ai Lo Tsong Yao, director of the bureau of foreign affairs, Nanking, that he is endeavoring to obtain the viceroy’s consent to a full and fair investigation of the mixed-court procedure with a view to preparing under foreign advice [Page 391]and assistance a new Code of rules, which shall be submitted to the foreign representatives at Peking and the wai-wu-pu for approval and adoption, Taot’ai Lo, in my opinion, is the best man for such work, as h£ has always appeared conservative and just, and furthermore is accepted as an authority on law. He has been finely educated in England, and while his brother was minister to the Court of St. James was secretary. I may be mistaken in my estimate of the man, but I believe him able and disposed to do justice to both sides in such a matter as this.

He apparently is very anxious for a solution of the question, and predicts dangerous disturbances in Shanghai unless a thorough understanding is reached in the immediate future. He does not think the damage and indemnity claim growing out of the riots should be pressed, and denies that there is a Chinese responsibilty, moral or otherwise.

I would be greatly obliged for your opinion on Taot’ai Lo’s proposition, as he will undoubtedly ask me for it.

James L. Rodgers.
[Inclosure 8.]

Mr. Rockhill to Mr. Rodgers.

Sir: I have the honor to acknowledge the receipt of your No. 194, of the 23d instant, in which, referring to certain “amended rules of the mixed court,” you inclose copy of certain instructions to the mixed court dated July 5, 1900, and signed by the consuls-general of the United States, Great Britain, and Germany. You add that the rules have been in full force and effect since that date, and you add: “I am told they were agreed to at Peking.”

In reply I would state that the document you inclose was never, so far as I can learn, after careful search in this and in the British legation, sent here for the approval of the diplomatic corps. In fact its date—July 3, 1900—precludes the possibility of such a step having been taken, and there is no record of it having been received at this legation after the reopening of communication between Peking and Shanghai.

Furthermore, I would call your attention to the fact that nothing shows that this document was ever approved by the local Chinese authorities, although it may have been accepted by the mixed court judge for the time being.

It certainly does not constitute a permanent amendment to the original rules of 1868, which I explained in my dispatch No. 502, of the 9th instant, must be formally accepted by the Chinese Government and the representatives of the powers in Peking interested in the matter. No other method existed than exists now for amending the rules for the government of this court, which, as I have said, calls for the agreement of the powers concerned. You can do absolutely nothing locally in the matter, nor can the municipal council.

W. W. Rockhill.
[Inclosure 9.]

Mr. Rockhill to Mr. Rodgers.

Sir: I have to acknowledge the receipt of your No. 190, of the 18th instant, and to say in reply thereto that it is not understood here what Taot’ai Lo Tsong Yao could do at the present time in the way of “preparing under foreign advice and assistance a new code of rules which shall be submitted to the foreign representatives at Peking and the wai-wu-pu for approval and adoption.

In my No. 504, of the 10th instant, I gave a history of the negotiations which have been under way between the diplomatic representatives of the powers and the Chinese Government since 1901 for the revision of the rules of 1868. You will note therein that on December 22, 1904, the Chinese Government was informed of the amendments which the various governments deemed necessary, and that [Page 392]on December 4, 1905, the counter proposals of the Chinese Government were submitted to the ministers. These are now under consideration, and no new rules or proposals can be considered by us.

W. W. Rockhill.
[Inclosure 10.]

Article in the North China Daily News of Shanghai, January 23, 1906.

a court for shanghai.

The dispute that has been raised by the Chinese as to the administration of the settlement north of the Yangkingpang can never be settled by the discussion of mere local authority—Chinese or foreign, official or unofficial. The power now rests with the high representatives of all the powers in Peking, acting in negotiation with the Chinese waiwupu. Neither can solution be found by a consideration of only one issue. The problem is multiform, needing discussion, but discussion that is calm.

Apparently with many the main and only issue is the mixed court. It may indeed be the main one; it is not the only one. As important it is well to bring to light a few old and a few simple principles. The most obvious fact is that the mixed court is not properly a Chinese court; it is a mixed court. The very idea of establishing such a court at all implied something new and something different from existing Chinese courts. That it was established in the foreign settlement also implied that the court would be conducted in a way other than what was customary outside the settlement and within the native city. The difference lay in the introduction of something foreign. What is the amount of the foreign element may never have been clearly stated in ironclad rules; but plainly the court is not Chinese.

If we trace the development of a general and fundamental principle, it will first be noticed that by the treaty of Tientsin in 1858 it was merely stated that Chinese subjects guilty of crime against English (foreign) subjects would be tried and punished according to Chinese laws. Foreign subjects in the same way would come under the laws of their own nation. The general and flexible statement was then made: Justice shall equitably and impartially be administered on both sides. This general principle applied to mixed cases in all parts of China. What should be done in the then English settlement was not stated till 1869, when the British minister, after consulting the Tsung-li Yamen, issued orders for the management of a mixed court in the English settlement. It was” then stated that in cases where Chinese are defendants “a consul or his deputy shall sit” with the magistrate. This sitting process was vague enough always to suit the Chinese; but it certainly implied something, or why should it be added that in cases where Chinese only are concerned the foreign official “shall not interfere.” Logically the sitting would be a legitimate interference. In the treaty of 1876, which, however, was never ratified, the mixed court was acknowledged to be unsatisfactory. “The officer presiding over it, either from lack of power or dread of unpopularity, constantly fails to enforce his judgments.” This treaty reiterated the sitting process and added, “This is the meaning of the words hui t’ung, indicating combined action in judicial proceedings.” Plainly, then, the court is not Chinese. This combination, as the same treaty says, must continue “so long as the laws of the two countries differ from each other.”

If the mixed court Chinese officer was unsatisfactory in 1876, his successors have imitated him closely in this respect. The combination can not be abandoned now, for law and administration of China and foreign powers still differ. Similarity to western jurisprudence can not be attained by the mixed court till trained legal men sit on the bench.

From the experience of the past weeks there is no sign of any willingness on the part of the Chinese to assimilate to the legal usage of the British. Not only the English assessor is in the wrong, but the foreign police system is in fault and the foreign prison system is not equal to the Chinese. The day of conformity to the west is a long way off; so also China’s sovereign rights in judicial cases.

[Page 393]

The mixed court being a court of “combination,” all cases are to be tried in this combined way where a foreigner is the accuser. And, though the Chinese forget it, this includes cases presented by the municipal police or the municipal council. Such cases are not Chinese cases, as the mixed court is not Chinese.

[Inclosure 11.]

Article in the Worth China Daily News of Shanghai, January 24, 1906.

our charter.

The land regulations are the charter of the liberties and rights of our municipality, as the treaties are the charter of our rights as individuals in China; and to understand and appreciate the force of the land regulations it is necessary to consider with them the speech by the late Sir Rutherford Alcock, British consul at Shanghai, to the land renters, on the 11th of January, 1854, at the meeting at which the land regulations were adopted and the municipality of Shanghai was created. An extract from that speech was reprinted by us three years ago, it being considered desirable then that it should be brought again to the notice of the community; the community changes considerably in three years, and we therefore reprinted it again and published it as a supplement with our issue of last Saturday.

The first regulations were issued by the British consul and the taotai in 1845, and dealt almost exclusively with the acquisition and tenure of land by foreigners in “the ground north of the Yangkingpang, set apart to be rented by English merchants.” They contained a provision that contributions should be made by the land renters for the original cost and subsequent upkeep of roads, jetties, and gateways; and for nine years this work was done and the money collected and disbursed by a committee of roads and jetties. The rapid growth of Shanghai, and particularly the influx of crowds of houseless refugees, brought about a condition of things with which the existing committee was entirely unable to cope, and toward the end of 1853, at a meeting of land renters, a resolution to the following effect was adopted unanimously:

“That this meeting considers some system of municipal regulations absolutely indispensable to the comfort, order, and safety of the community, and that as representing the body of the residents they are prepared to take into favorable consideration at the earliest moment any well-devised system that may be suggested.”

Sir Rutherford, as British consul, had realized by experience “the want of some authority by which all the diverse elements of this cosmopolite settlement in the occupation of foreigners of many nations and of a native population might be welded together.” It will be noted at once that the council created by the land regulations was to be not merely an executive body, but an authoritative body. Its authority was to extend over all residents in the settlement of whatever nationality, for, as the original regulations stipulated, “Individuals belonging to other nations renting ground * * * or temporarily residing within the boundaries of the ground * * * set apart to be rented to English merchants, must all, in the same manner as the English people, obey all these regulations.”

The regulations of 1854, then, were drawn up by the representatives of the three treaty powers—the British consul, Alcock, the American consul, Murphy, and the French ad interim consul, Edan. They were revised and approved by the three ministers of the treaty powers, and the taot’ai attached his seal to them. The express design of the regulations was to give the foreign community “the right of self-government and the power of taxation for municipal purposes, with the means under both these heads of providing for their own security and well-being.” Sir Rutherford answered for himself and his colleagues that they would interfere with the municipal council no further than “by suggestions to indicate * * * the best course to be followed for the removal of difficulties.” The regulations were intended “to give that cosmopolite community a legal status; an existence as a body capable of taking legal action, and of lending a legal sanction to measures required for their defense.” Sir Rutherford draws attention more than once to the full authority given to the council to protect life and property “from causes of national disturbance in the country where they were located, from sources of disquiet and danger within and without the [Page 394]settlement, where a large native population bid fair to dispute possession with the foreigners for every rood of ground within the limits.” In a later passage he showed once more that the widest powers were given by the regulations to the municipality. He said:

“And if it was essential that the community should mold itself into some tangible and legal form, take a local habitation and a name for such major objects of safety; the secondary objects to be attained were of scarcely less importance in the aggregate, and only to be secured by a power invested with municipal forms. All the regulations and measures necessary for the preservation of health in the maintenance of cleanliness, for the organization of police, for the creation and administration of a revenue were comprehended in municipal government. In so far as such objects were concerned it was desired and desirable that the community should exercise all the powers contemplated in the new code, self-government, and with it self-taxation for all the objects of public utility and convenience the community were empowered to decide upon.”

The ministers and consuls of the three treaty powers who created the Shanghai municipality undoubtedly intended to give the municipality complete authority over the settlement and all residents in its limits, foreign and Chinese. Attempts have been made now and again to impair that authority by consuls and Chinese officials, and the council has not always been as strenuous in resisting those attempts as it should be. It was the often-expressed opinion of Mr. George F. Seward, who so ably represented the United States here and in Peking for many years, that the council did not sufficiently assert the authority with which it was vested; and it is therefore well to remind the community from time to time that it is endowed with the fullest measure of self-government.

  1. For the copy of the minutes of the consular meeting of July 26, 1905, mentioned above, see inclosure No. 7 in dispatch to the department No. 178, of December 23, 1905.