File No. 812.516/128

The Secretary of State to the French Ambassador

No. 1753

Excellency: I have the honor to acknowledge the receipt of your excellency’s note of September 11, 1916, concerning a demand that has been made by the de facto Government of Mexico upon the Bank of London and Mexico, requiring the bank to redeem over $200,000.00 of its bank notes, at par, in coin. You state that the French Minister at Mexico City has already requested General Venustiano Carranza to reconsider the matter, and you request me to exercise my good offices in an endeavor to prevent violent measures being taken against the institution mentioned.

You add that the bank is compelled to accept paper money in payments made to it, and that the bank should, therefore, not be forced to redeem it notes otherwise than with the said paper money.

In reply I have the honor to inform your excellency that, under date of September 12, 1916, I addressed a letter to the Secretary to the American commissioners, American and Mexican Joint Commission, at New London, Connecticut, enclosing correspondence on the subject, including a memorandum from your excellency’s Embassy. In my letter I called the said secretary’s special attention to the proposed action against certain banking institutions in Mexico City, and suggested that it might be advisable for the American members of the commission to take up the matter with the Mexican members, and to point out to them the injurious effect which the threatened action might have on the financial rehabilitation of Mexico.

I have the honor to add that I have sent several copies, in translation, of your note to the American members of the commission for their consideration.

Accept [etc.]

Robert Lansing