File No. 711.38/30.


Used best efforts to have Haitian Government agree to sign the treaty as submitted. Haitian Government declare that it is impossible to secure ratification in that form but states that treaty modified as set out below will be ratified by Haitian Congress. New Minister for Foreign Affairs, Mr. Borno, assured me that should United States insist on original draft he will resign rather than sign same as he is convinced that the Government could not hope to have this action ratified by Congress.

He declared before submitting his proposed changes that they were made in the attempt to concede all United States demands but to do so in a manner less humiliating to the Haitian people and also to avoid certain points which in the opinion of the Government are not possible under the Haitian Constitution.

In my opinion the Government is sincere in its declaration as to its inability to sign original treaty and I believe if it is insisted upon the Government will fall. I also think treaty below submitted would be ratified without further modification. I am assured of this by the President and Minister of the Interior who were former presidents of the Senate and Congress and who are very influential in those bodies.

However, in case the United States Government finds modified treaty acceptable, I request exact instructions as to previous resolution of Congress. My personal opinion is that it is unnecessary and will cause delay but I have no means other than by the Government’s assurances and personal expressions of legislators to satisfy myself of conditions set forth in your telegram September 5, 3 p.m.

The following changes in the original draft7 of treaty submitted represent the desires of the Haitian Government:

Preamble. Omit word “unsatisfactory”. Omit all between word “finances” and words “to maintain”. Omit all between words “its people” and words “and the United States”.

Article I. “The Government of the United States will, by its good offices, aid the Haitian Government in the proper and efficient development of its agricultural, mineral and commercial resources and in the establishment of the finances of Haiti on a firm and solid basis.”

[Page 444]

Article II. Article I of original draft to become Article II and to read: “The President of Haiti will appoint, after a previous agreement with the President of the United States regarding such appointments, a General Receiver and such aids and employees as may be necessary, who shall collect” and so on to the semicolon, which is changed to a period. New sentence: “The President of Haiti shall appoint, after a previous agreement with the President of the United States regarding such appointment, a Financial Adviser who shall be an officer attached to the Ministry of Finance. The Financial Adviser shall, etc.” same text to “and generally, etc.,” which becomes “and make such other recommendations to the Minister of Finance as may be deemed necessary for the welfare and prosperity of Haiti.”

Articles II and III original draft accepted.

Article IV original, after the words “Financial Adviser,” add: “which salaries will be determined by previous agreement; second, etc.”

Article V original, after “employees” add: “and the salary and expenses of the Financial Adviser,”

Articles VI and VII original, same.

Article VIII original, change the words “the assent of” to read: “a previous agreement with”.

Article IX original, after “efficient constabulary” add: “, urban and rural, to be”; after “Americans,” add: “appointed by the President of Haiti after a previous agreement with the President of the United States. The Haitian Government shall clothe these officers with the proper etc.”, to the end of the sentence, followed by this additional sentence: “These officers will be replaced by Haitians as they, by examination conducted under the direction of the senior officer charged with the organization of this constabulary, are found to be qualified to assume such duties.” Remainder same.

Article X original, omit words “except to the United States” and “other.”

Article XI original, substitute “American” for “foreign”. Add as additional sentence: “The Haitian Government agrees to conclude with other foreign Powers, should they so request, arbitration treaties for the settlement of pending claims of their corporations, companies, citizens or subjects against Haiti.”

Article XII, substitute words “high contracting parties” in place of “Government of the United States”.

Article XIII original, to read: “The high contracting parties shall have authority to take such steps as may be necessary to insure the complete attainment of any of the objects comprehended in this treaty and, should the necessity occur, the United States will lend an efficient aid for the preservation of, etc.”, to the end of the article.

Article XIV of the original, same.

Article XV original, in place of “at the request of either party” substitute “if, for specific reasons presented by either of the high contracting parties, the full purpose of this treaty has not been accomplished.”

  1. For. Rel. 1914, p. 349; and, ante, Department’s August 12, 1915.