File No. 18942/8–9.

Minister Heimké to the Secretary of State.

No. 185.]

Sir: I have the honor to acknowledge the receipt of the department’s telegram of the 17th instant (which came yesterday), directing me to make a full investigation into the matter of the murder of the African-American citizen William Wright near Livingston on or about December 18 last, and directing, further, that if I find the facts to be as reported, I should bring the matter to the attention of the Guatemalan Government and request the prompt and vigorous punishment of the murderers and the removal of the corrupt officials responsible for the delay and failure of justice.

In compliance with the requirements of the above-named telegraphic instruction I have taken the first steps in making the investigation in question in a communication that I have this day addressed to Consul General William P. Kent, in which, after informing him of what the department had directed in these premises, I requested him to draw up an interrogatory for transmission to Mr. Reed, our consular agent at Livingston, with an instruction to that officer to call before him anyone whose sworn testimony might serve in fixing the responsibility for the murder of William Wright, and adding that after the receipt by me of such testimony I would take up the matter with the Government of Guatemala, as instructed by the department. I am sure that in this way we will be able to obtain sufficient evidence to make it quite necessary for me to request the Government of Guatemala to remove the corrupt Col. García from his post at Livingston, and that we will also bring to light the names [Page 349] of the assassins of William Wright. In a prior consultation with Consul General Kent, that officer expressed his accord with my views in that the manner outlined above is the most effectual that could be adopted in obtaining the evidence we desire.

I shall keep the department advised of the progress made in this investigation and of my action when the time has arrived for me to bring the matter to the attention of the Government of Guatemala.

I have, etc.,

William Heimké.