File No. 763.72112/1

The Board of Trade of Kansas City to the Secretary of State


In view of the fact that the buying of grain has been greatly curtailed and the various ports are being congested with wheat by reason of the fact that the exporters of grain are fearful of the war situation and do not consider it safe to load grain ships or forward any grain for export by reason of the uncertainty as to the position the foreign powers may take as to whether or not grain will or will not be considered contraband of war, we believe that the United States Government should now approach the powers who may become involved in war to the end that a declaration may be obtained from the powers to the effect that grain may proceed in neutral vessels without molestation to destination whatever same may be. Furthermore that grain shipped for export should remain safe from seizure even if shipped in a vessel belonging to one or the other of the powers that may be at war whatever its destination. Further that ships which have sailed or are being loaded for export before a possible declaration of war should be respected in any case for whatever port they may be destined or to whatever flag they may belong, We earnestly trust that the State Department will take some immediate action in reference to this matter as the uncertainty of the position which the powers may take regarding grain and foodstuffs is paralyzing the grain business of the west and is causing an acute financial situation.

Board of Trade of Kansas City
By D. F. Piazzek , Vice President