File No. 9757/4–5.

Chargé Brown to the Secretary of State.

No. 493.]

Sir: I have the honor to acknowledge your instruction No. 287 of the 13th instant (file No. 9757), in reference to the opening by Turkish officials of the mail of American missionaries.

I have already had occasion to unofficially call the attention of the Ottoman postal authorities to abuses in this respect, and in compliance with your instructions I have this day addressed a formal note to the minister of foreign affairs (as per inclosure), reminding the Sublime Porte of its assurances in 1892, and the positive orders which it issued in the latter part of that year, that letters addressed to Americans should not be detained.

I have, etc.,

Philip Brown.

Chargé Brown to the Minister for Foreign Affairs.

No. 943.]

Mr. Minister: I have the honor to inform your excellency that it is complained by American missionaries residing in Turkey that their mail is often opened and subjected to long delay in delivery.

Acting under the instructions of my Government, I would respectfully remind the Imperial Ottoman Government of the assurances given by the Sublime Porte to the legation in 1892 in this regard, and of the positive orders issued the latter part of April of the same year that letters addressed to Americans should not be detained.

I am confident that such instances of abuse as alluded to have been without the knowledge of the superior postal authorities, and that necessary steps will be promptly taken to guard against further interference with private mail by subordinate officials.

I take, etc.,

Philip Brown.