Ambassador Meyer to the Secretary of State.

No. 519.]

Sir: I beg leave to confirm my cable of the 21st, reading as follows:a

I at once notified the British embassy, as Stuart was a British subject, and reported the news to the foreign office, asking to have it officially confirmed.

I have the honor to acknowledge your cable instructions received in cipher, the true reading of which is:a

I had anticipated your instruction, and on the evening of the 21st cabled you as below:

The foreign office has just advised me of the following telegram, received at 11 o’clock p.m., May 20: “American Vice-Consul Stuart was mortally wounded near his country house at the village of Makhindjaouri. He died an hour later. The reason for the attack is unknown. An energetic inquiry is being made. Orders have been given to governor to use strenuous measures to discover murderers and to communicate results of inquiry.”

In addition to this, the minister of foreign affairs, Mr. Izolsky, wrote personally expressing his condolences and horror at the crime.

It seems that Mr. Stuart was in business, representing English firms, and last Christmas was intimidated by a number of workmen into paying a tribute of 3,000 roubles. He has also lately had trouble, it is said, with the longshoremen, on account of a clerk in his employ, and it would appear that this attack had been instigated by personal spite.

[Page 1292]

The Government is making every effort to intercept the assassins, and I understand that three arrests have been made. This information I have not as yet received officially.

I am inclosing on over-leaf copy of letter addressed to the foreign office, and also another to the British embassy in St. Petersburg.

I have, etc.,

G. von L. Meyer.

Ambassador Meyer to the British Chargé Spring Rice.

Sir: On the night of the 20th instant, Mr. William H. Stuart, a British subject, the United States vice-consul at Batoum, was murdered near his country place at the village of Makhindjaouri. As there was no consul at Batoum, Mr. Stuart was in full charge of our consulate, which is in consequence left without a representative.

For your information, I beg to inform you that my Government has already requested the British Government to allow Mr. Patrick Stevens, His Brittanic Majesty’s consul at Batoum, to assume charge of the American consulate and to represent our’ interests at that place, and that I have asked the Russian Government to consent to this representation on the part of Mr. Stevens.

I have, etc.,

G. von L. Meyer.


The Department of State has just received the memorandum of the Russian embassy containing a copy of the telegram sent by the imperial minister of foreign affairs to the Russian ambassador at Washington, dated the 21st instant, announcing the murder of the American vice-consul at Batoum, Mr. Stuart.

The Government of the United States does not entertain a doubt that the Imperial Government will use its best endeavors to bring those who have committed the crime to justice.

  1. Supra.
  2. Supra.