File No. 812.512/634.

Sierra Consolidated Mines Company to the Secretary of State.


Sir: We enclose herewith a copy in Spanish, together with English translation, of a decree77 recently promulgated by the Carranza faction, [Page 911] under date of March 1, 1915, the enforcement of which will greatly and excessively increase the taxes on mining properties in Mexico.

We desire to emphatically protest against the enforcement and the recognition of this decree, on the following grounds:

That it imposes a tax which is exorbitant and confiscatory.
That it is retroactive because it was not published in the State of Chihuahua (where the properties of this company are located) and because neither this company nor its subsidiary, the Sierra Mining Company, S. A., had any notice or knowledge of it until after the month of March, in which month the taxes covered by it were payable.
That the Carranza Government is not in control of the State of Chihuahua, and cannot give any protection to this company so as to enable it to operate its properties.
That this company was forced to abandon its operations in the State of Chihuahua, and that it has already been compelled by superior force to pay taxes to the local government under Villa, which is now in control of Chihuahua, and that therefore the enforcement of the Carranza decree will subject this company to double taxation.

* * * We respectfully petition that formal protest be made by your Department to the Carranza Government against this decree, and that that government be notified that the decree will not be recognized by the United States as having any application to mining properties owned by citizens of this country and situated without the territory under control of the Carranza Government. * * *


Sierra Consolidated Mines Company.
  1. See inclosure with Mr. Sidney Smith’s letter of April 15, ante.