The Swiss Minister to the Secretary of State.


Mr. Secretary of State: By a note of the 11th of June, 1902, this legation had the honor to have recourse to the obligingness of the Department of State in the matter of the repatriation of Elisabeth Abeldt-Fricker, born in Switzerland on the 10th of January, 1859, and married on September 3, 1892, at Abilene, Dickinson County, Kans., to Charles Abeldt, an American citizen born on August 25, 1862, in Wabaunsee County, Kans.

By a note of June 26, 1902, the Department of State advised this legation that nothing stood in the way of the woman Abeldt-Fricker coming back to the United States from Switzerland, and that, being the wife of an American citizen, neither she nor her minor child was subject to the immigration laws of this country.

In consequence of that exchange of notes, the woman Abeldt and her daughter were sent home at the expense of the Canton of Argovia and were to arrive in the United States on the French ship La Lorraine, which sailed for New York from Havre on the 9th of August, 1902.

On the 20th of November of last year the Abeldt-Fricker couple obtained from the district court of Lyon County, Kans., a decree of divorce, under which the mother was given the care of bringing up the daughter Alice, and the father was to pay the cost of her education. In December last the woman Abeldt returned to Switzerland and established her residence at Brugg, in the Canton of Argovia, with her parents. After a short while it was discovered that she was not in full possession of her mental faculties, and she had to be transferred to the insane asylum of Konigsfelden. As her parents are utterly unable to meet the cost of her maintenance in the asylum, the woman Abeldt has once more become a public charge.

For that reason the authorities of the Canton of Argovia find themselves constrained to ask again that the woman Abeldt and her daughter be sent to their home in the United States. This time it is no longer a mere matter of repatriation, but it would be necessary, immediately upon their landing in the United States, to send the woman Abeldt to an insane asylum and to provide for her daughter in some other way.

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By order of my Government, I have the honor to beg that your excellency be pleased to permit the return of the said two persons to the United States and to authorize such formalities as may be required after the landing to insure their welfare.

I also beg your excellency kindly to advise this legation as to what are the authorities in New York to which the woman Abeldt and her child might be turned over.

In support of my request, I have the honor to append hereto a translation of the documents concerning Charles Abeldt’s marriage and citizenship, a copy of the decree of divorce issued on November 20, 1905, and a certificate from the insane asylum at Königsfelden.

Hoping that your excellency will be able to give this matter your favorable attention, I beg you to accept, etc.,

L. Vogel.