File No. 13116/2.

Minister Furniss to the Secretary of State.

No. 355.]

Sir: I have the honor to inclose herewith copies of the correspondence between this legation and the Haitian department of foreign [Page 448] relations relative to certain Haitian authorities refusing permission to Americans to land at Haitian ports.

It would seem from Secretary Borno’s reply that there will be no further difficulty. However, I am not unmindful of the fact that I have several times informally discussed this matter with the Haitian Government and have been promised that there would be no further annoyance, yet there has been no amelioration until now.

I have, etc.,

H. W. Furniss.
[Inclosure 1.]

Minister Furniss to the Minister for Foreign Affairs.

No. 266.]

Sir: I have recently had numerous complaints from American tourists and business men because they have been refused permission to go ashore at the different ports in Haiti where the boats on which they were passengers have touched. While I do not wish to question the right of your excellency’s Government to refuse permission to foreigners to land in Haiti, yet, if it is your Government’s orders that certain ports are closed against all foreigners who have not tickets for the particular ports at which they wish to land, I am desirous of being made acquainted with that fact, that I may so inform my Government.

If no such orders have been issued, then I desire to call to your excellency’s attention that summary and repeated refusal to permit American tourists to land in Haiti for the few hours the steamers which they are on are in Haitian ports, can not help but subject your Government to adverse criticism and create feeling which I am sure can not be your Government’s desire to cultivate.

In the case of business men who have come to Haiti to transact legitimate affairs, refusal to permit such to land becomes a more serious matter. In several cases my attention has been called to the fact that such have been refused permission to go ashore at various ports in Haiti, though they were American and Haitian passports in due form and could prove that they were representatives of legitimate American firms and desired to go on shore in Haiti to attend to their legitimate business. There have been several such cases here, and though your excellency’s Government has in some instances finally allowed the parties in question to come on shore after this legation had called the matter to your department’s attention, yet it has always occasioned a delay of several hours, which means considerable loss to a business man when his stay here is only to be of some hours’ duration. Other than the delay mentioned, it occasions this legation great inconvenience and loss of time in having personally to follow up the matter that I may finally ascertain what disposition your Government has toward it.

In some of the other ports in Haiti the difficulty for an American business man with proper credentials to go on shore is even greater. Permission is often seemingly arbitrarily refused by your officials. Particularly is this true at Jacmel. A case in point is that of Mr. Von Jenny, an American, who was here for some weeks prior to the 17th instant, when he took passage on the S. S. President for Santo Domingo. Mr. Von Jenny will be remembered as the one who conducted the sale of the yacht Columbine to your excellency’s Government. He had American and Haitian passports. Upon the arrival of the President at Jacmel, on the 21st instant, he desired to go on shore on business. The “chef du port” refused him permission to land and sometime later he succeeded in calling his case to the attention of the consular agent, who communicated with the commandant de l’arrondissement. I inclose herewith copies of this correspondence.

Another case is that of Mr. Guyol, an American, who was passenger from Venezuela on the Dutch S. S. Prins Willem III, arriving here on the 28th instant. He has American and Haitian passports, properly viséed, yet he was refused permission to go on shore at Jacmel on the 24th and has suffered considerable business prejudice thereby. At Jeremie, St. Marc, and here he was allowed to land at once.

[Page 449]

I would thank you, Mr. Secretary, to bring this matter to the attention of the proper officials, with the request that I be furnished with a prompt reply as to the stand which your excellency’s Government takes relative to the matter.

Please accept, Mr. Secretary, the renewed assurances of my high consideration.

H. W. Furniss.
[Inclosure 2.—Translation.]

The Minister for Foreign Affairs to Minister Furniss.

No. 42.]

Mr. Minister: I have the honor to acknowledge to your excellency the receipt of your letter No. 266, relative to the complaint of several tourists and business men from the United States, to whom permission had been refused to land at certain Haitian ports, although they had both American and Haitian passports.

I can but sincerely regret, Mr. Minister, that the authorities of the ports in question have so badly interpreted, in applying them, the orders that the Government has had to issue to them sometimes concerning certain persons whom the police had serious reasons not to permit to debark. The exaggerating of these orders is more regrettable, since the Government has at heart particularly to facilitate the access into our territory of all foreigners to give them thus the means of rendering to themselves an account of our situation, convinced as we are that an exact knowledge of the country can not but be advantageous, notably in the considerable possibilities that it offers to capitalists.

It is sufficient to say to you that the Government could not fail to give to your letter the attention which it merits, and I have the satisfaction to assure you that by instructions which have just been issued to the authorities at those ports, your legation will never again see renewed the acts of which these peaceful voyagers have complained.

Please accept, etc.,

Louis Borno.