Paris Peace Conf. 180.03501/65


Notes of a Meeting of the Heads of Delegations of the Five Great Powers Held in M. Pichon’s Room at the Quai d’Orsay, Paris, on Thursday, October 2, 1919, at 10:30 a.m.

  • Present
    • America, United States of
      • Hon. F. L. Polk.
    • Secretary
      • Mr. L. Harrison.
    • British Empire
      • Sir Eyre Crowe.
    • Secretary
      • Mr. H. Norman.
    • France
      • M. Clemenceau.
      • M. Pichon.
    • Secretaries
      • M. Dutasta.
      • M. Berthelot.
      • M. de St. Quentin.
    • Italy
      • M. Scialoja.
    • Secretary
      • M. Barone Russo.
    • Japan
      • M. Matsui.
    • Secretary
      • M. Kawai.
Joint Secretariat
America, United States of Captain Chapin
British Empire Captain Hinchley-Cooke
France M. Massigli
Italy M. Zanchi.
Interpreter—M. Camerlynck

The following were also present for the items in which they were concerned.

  • America, United States of
    • Colonel Logan.
  • British Empire
    • Lt. Col. Kisch.
    • Major Money
    • Mr. Ibbetson-James
  • France
    • General Weygand
    • M. Tirman
    • M. Max Lazard
    • M. Seydoux
  • Italy
    • Maggiore Rugiu.

1. (The Council had before it a letter from the Legation of the Netherlands dated August 9th, (Appendix “A”) together with a note from the Ports, Waterways and Railways Commission, dated August 20th (Appendix “B”).) Negotiations With Holland Regarding Article 354 of the German Peace Treaty, Relative to Modification of the Convention of Mannheim

M. Titran, in explanation of the matter in question, Reiative said that Article 354 of the German Peace Treaty up-held the Convention of Mannheim of 1868,1 with certain modifications. The first of these dealt with the [Page 484] composition of a Commission charged with supervising the control of the traffic on the Rhine, and the second with technical matters regarding the navigation. Following the Treaty of Frankfort in 18712 the Convention of Mannheim had remained in force but the French representative on the Commission had been replaced by a delegate from Alsace-Lorraine. It was clear that in order to modify the Convention at the present time Holland should consent thereto, as it was a signatory power. The question before the Council was to determine in what manner the Government of the Netherlands should be invited to participate in the negotiations for a further modification of the Convention of Mannheim. He felt that the Council itself was the proper body to address the invitation in question.

Mr. Polk said that he was not familiar with the details of the question but that he believed it to be one which interested France and the British Empire especially. He therefore suggested that it would be well to convoke a Commission composed of representatives of these two countries to consider the question.

M. Tirman replied that it was a question of execution of a clause of the German Peace Treaty and that the Council itself, which was the proper body to supervise such execution, should issue the invitation to the Dutch Government.

Mr. Polk asked what procedure M. Tirman suggested in the matter.

M. Tirman said that the President of the Council might address a formal invitation to the Government of the Netherlands.

Sir Eyre Crowe remarked that there were two phases of the matter. In the first place, it was necessary to obtain the agreement of the Dutch Government to a further modification of the Mannheim Convention. In the second place, the question might arise of the eventual participation of the Netherlands in the General Convention provided for by Article 338 of the German Peace Treaty, regarding the rivers which were to be internationalized.

M. Tirman agreed that two questions were involved. In the first place there was a necessity of executing a clause of the German Peace Treaty at once. On the other hand, Article 354 gave a temporary character to the organization set up in the Peace Treaty. A general Convention was provided for for the international rivers, and the Treaty further stipulated that if the general Convention should not agree with the Convention for the Rhine the latter should be modified. It was known that the Netherlands were desirous of taking part in the General Convention, and it appeared that the Treaty gave them all the guarantees in this matter which they might wish.

At all events, the Treaty provided that the General Convention should not become absolute until it had been approved by the League of [Page 485] Nations. Holland had already asked to be admitted to the League of Nations. Furthermore, the Treaty provided that if a General Convention were not agreed upon, the Central Commission of the Ehine (in which The Netherlands were represented) would be charged with drawing up a definite convention for that river. In any case, the Dutch Government would receive satisfaction.

Sir Eyre Crowe asked to what Conference the Dutch Government was to be invited, whether it was to be one between the Principal Allied and Associated Powers, or a meeting of the delegates of the Governments composing the Central Rhine Commission. If the invitation was to a Conference of the Principal Allied and Associated Powers the United States of America would be represented therein, while Switzerland, a state vitally interested in the question, would not. On the second hypothesis, the United States would not be represented while Switzerland would be.

M. Tirman said that he believed the conference should be between representatives of all the Powers who were to be members of the Central Rhine Commission, but that the meeting should take place under the auspices of the Council in order not to exclude the Great Powers which were not represented on the former body. The conference should take place in two phases. The Dutch Government should first be invited to agree to the modification of the Convention of Mannheim, of which it was a part. One of the modifications would be the admission of Switzerland, which was not at the present time a party to the Convention. Thereafter the Swiss Government should be invited to participate in the remainder of the negotiations.

(It was decided:

that the President of the Peace Conference should invite The Netherlands Government to take part in the negotiations provided for by Article 354 of the Peace Treaty with Germany, relative to the modification of the Convention of Mannheim of 1868;
that the negotiations in question should take place under the auspices of the Supreme Council, between the interested Allied Powers (who are represented on the Central Rhine Commission, in accordance with Article 355 of the German Peace Treaty), and The Netherlands Government;
that the Swiss Government should later be invited to take part in the negotiations.

2. (The Council had before it a note from Marshal Foch dated September 29th, 1919, (See Appendix “C”.).)

General Weygand in explanation of the note in question said that the Polish Authorities had addressed a request for supplies to Marshal Foch in his capacity of Commander-in-Chief of the Polish Forces. This request appeared to Marshal Foch in all respects worthy of satisfaction, for according to the statements of General Henrys and other officers of the [Page 486] Inter-Allied Staff who had been in Poland the Polish Army was in great need of the supplies asked for. With the exception of General Haller’s troops, the army was insufficiently equipped. For example, in one regiment there were only two overcoats per company. A continuation of this state of affairs, in view of the approaching winter, would lead to an exceedingly critical situation from the point of view of the morale of the Polish Army and might cause a retreat of this force from the line of the Beresina. Marshal Foch, believing that it was to the interest of the Allies to maintain the Polish Army intact, wished to support the request which had been formulated. In the letter to the Council he had included only such requests as he believed to be of prime importance and which should be granted at once if the situation were to be saved. Note From Marshal Foch Supporting a Request for Military Supplies From the Polish Government

M. Clemenceau asked how it was planned to transport this material to Poland, assuming that it was available.

General Weygand said that the Allied Headquarters had already studied this problem. The transportation question was indeed a difficult one. The Port of Danzig was only available for the supply of food for the civilian population. Germany, of course, would not be prepared to permit supplies for the Polish Army to cross its frontiers. It had, therefore, been necessary to search out other routes. At the present time one regular train was running daily to Poland via Italy, which might be made use of. In addition the Italian Government was prepared to permit four trains per week to pass by way of the Brenner. Furthermore by using the route through Switzerland, Austria and Czecho-Slovakia it was possible to obtain two trains per day. For the latter transport, however, Austria and Czecho-Slovakia had asked that France should guarantee the expenses and furnish the coal. It was impossible for France to do this alone and it would consequently be necessary to add this charge, in addition to the expenses for the supply of material, to the account of the Principal Allied and Associated Powers. The total transport under this scheme would be twenty-five trains per week or about one hundred monthly. He had figured that the 600,000 uniforms requested would take approximately ninety-five trains or, in other words, that the shipment of these could be completed in somewhat less than a month’s time.

Mr. Scialoja asked whether the four trains proceeding by the Brenner route would interfere with the shipments of material which were now being made to Poland under contract between that country and Italy. Should the arrangements as outlined by General Weygand be put into effect he would like to have it understood that they should not prejudice the shipments which Italy was now making.

General Weygand said that there would be no difficulty in continuing the shipments referred to by Mr. Scialoja, and that the four trains which he had mentioned would be in addition to those shipments. [Page 487] It was first necessary that Marshal Foch’s Staff should agree with the Headquarters of the other Allied Armies as to what material could be shipped to Poland. Unquestionably this material would not all be concentrated at one point. He was anxious to obtain the authorization of the Council to consult the other Allied Headquarters in this matter.

Sir Eyre Crowe said that he had not yet been able to take this question up with his Government. He believed that the best method of procedure would be to instruct the Council of Military Experts at Versailles to study the question. This body had already formulated a general scheme for the supply of material to troops fighting the Bolshevists, and it was therefore probable that they could quickly arrive at a solution in the matter. In the meantime he would consult his Government.

General Weygand said that he feared much time would be lost by referring the matter to Military Experts at Versailles.

M. Clemenceau said that the difficulty might be overcome by instructing the Versailles Council to act without delay.

Mr. Polk said that the question from his point of view was largely a financial one. He agreed in the main with General Weygand’s remarks.

M. Clemenceau said that during such time as Mr. Polk and Sir Eyre Crowe were discussing the matter with their Governments the Military Experts at Versailles could be studying the practical means of executing the matter. The Polish Army was of great importance to the Allies as it constituted one of the best means of coercing Germany. It was very necessary to maintain this army in the field owing to the fact that Great Britain, the United States and France had so largely demobilized their troops.

General Weygand said that the Council at Versailles should be instructed to turn over the matter to Marshal Foch’s Headquarters for execution. He would collaborate with General Belin throughout the examination of the question.

It was decided:

to refer the request for material received from the Polish Ministry of War and approved by Marshal Foch, to the Allied Military Experts at Versailles and to instruct the latter to make an examination of the question with the least possible delay and report thereon to the Council.

It was further decided:

that the carrying out of the recommendations of the Allied Military Experts, if and when approved by the Supreme Council, should be entrusted to the Headquarters of Marshal Foch.

[Page 488]

3. Sir Eyre Crowe said that as it had already been decided that the Commission for the repatriation of German, Austrian and Hungarian prisoners of war from Siberia should function in Paris and not in Siberia, the only question before the Council was that of nominations for this Commission. After a short discussion, Designation of Members of the Commission for the Repatriation of German, Austrian and Hungarian Prisoners of War From Serbia [Siberia]

It was decided:

that the Commission for the repatriation of German, Austrian and Hungarian prisoners of war from Siberia should be composed as follows:

  • America, United States of:
    Colonel James A. Logan.
  • British Empire:
    Lt.-Colonel Black.
  • France:
    Lt.-Commander Fabre.
  • Italy:
    (Not yet designated.)
  • Japan:
    Major Katsuki.

It was further decided:

that the said Commission should function in Paris.

4. (The Council had before it a note from General Weygand relative to the repatriation of Czecho-Slovak, Polish, Jugoslav and Rumanian troops in Siberia (Appendix “D”).)

M. Clemenceau said that the note in question suggested a modification of the second paragraph of the resolution passed by the Council on September 27th in this matter. (The paragraph in question, (H. D. 62, Minute 7) read as follows: Repatriation of Polish, Jugoslav and Rumanian Troops From Siberia

“It was also decided: that the repatriation of the Czecho-Slovak troops in Siberia should be effected before that of the German, Austrian and Hungarian prisoners in Siberia.”)

As there were a considerable number of the troops of other Allied Nations in Siberia in addition to the Czecho-Slovak forces, it was proposed to substitute the following paragraph for that quoted above:

“It was also decided that the repatriation of the Czecho-Slovak, Polish, Jugoslav and Rumanian troops in Siberia should be effected before that of the German, Austrian and Hungarian prisoners.”

He was of the opinion that this procedure should be adopted.

Mr. Polk said that he had just received word from Washington [Page 489] that the German Government had been negotiating for the repatriation of its prisoners of war from Siberia, and had arranged with a Japanese steamship company for the chartering of six vessels for this purpose.

M. Berthelot suggested that M. Matsui ascertain the truth of this information, and if the facts were exact, the six vessels in question should be turned over for the use of the Allied Governments.

M. Matsui said that he had no information on the subject but that the repatriation of German prisoners in the hands of the Japanese was going on, and the negotiations referred to by Mr. Polk might conceivably be for this matter.

(It was decided:

to modify the second paragraph of the resolution taken by the Council on September 27th, (H. D. 62, Minute 7) so that the same should read as follows:

“It was also decided: that the repatriation of the Czecho-Slovak, Polish, Jugoslav and Rumanian troops in Siberia should be effected before that of the German, Austrian and Hungarian prisoners.”)

5. (The Council had before it a proposal submitted by the British Delegation, dated September 30th, 1919, asking that the Russian Battleship Volya be transferred to General Denekin Proposal To (Appendix “E”).)

Sir Eyre Crowe said that this matter had been brought up before the Council on account of the fact that the Russian Battleship involved had been turned over to the Allied and Associated Powers under Article 29 of the Armistice of November 11th, 1918. The consent of the Council to its transfer to General Denekin was therefore necessary. Proposal To Deliver the Russian Battleship “Volya” to General Uenekin

M. Clemenceau said that he personally had no objection to this transfer taking place.

Mr. Polk said that he personally had no objection to formulate, but that he would consult the American Naval experts and notify the Secretary-General of his decision in the matter later in the day.

(Mr. Polk later stated that the American Delegation had no objection to the procedure proposed.)

(It was decided:

that the Russian Battleship Volya, handed over to the Allied and Associated Powers under Article 29 of the Armistice of November 11th, 1918, should be transferred by the British Admiralty to General Denekin.)

6. (The Council had before it a note from the Secretary-General of the International Labor Commission, relative to applications [Page 490] made by Finland, Norway and The Netherlands for admission to the Labor Congress at Washington (Appendix “F”).)

Mr. Polk said that the matters raised by the note in question should be left to the Labor Congress for decision. Applications From Finland, Norway and the Netherlands for Admission to the Labor Congress at Washington

M. Clemenceau agreed with Mr. Polk and asked merely that the United States Government should permit the representatives of the countries in question to go to the United States, by issuing them the necessary passports.

Mr. Polk said that he would have the same letter addressed to the representatives of Finland, Norway and The Netherlands as had been sent to the German and Austrian Labor Delegates (See H. D. 52, Minute 4;3 and H. D. 56, Minute 1.)4

(It was decided:

that the questions raised by the note of the Secretary-General of the International Labor Commission relative to the admission of delegates from Finland, Norway and The Netherlands to the forthcoming Labor Congress at Washington, should be left to the decision of that Congress.

It was further decided:

that the American Delegation should notify the Secretary-General of the International Labor Commission that no obstacles would be placed in the way of Finnish, Norwegian or Dutch delegates desirous of proceeding to Washington in anticipation of a decision in their favor by the Congress.)

7. Sir Eyre Crowe said that there were two possible ways by which the Neutral Governments might be informed of the decision of the Council regarding the Blockade of Soviet Russia. First, a joint notification might be made in each of the neutral capitals by the diplomatic representatives of the Principal Allied and Associated Powers. Secondly, a note might be sent by M. Clemenceau, as President of the Peace Conference, to the Diplomatic Representatives of the Neutral countries in Paris. Procedure To Be Followed in Notifying Neutral Governments Regarding the Blockade of Soviet Russia

Mr. Polk said that the second solution proposed by Sir Eyre Crowe seemed to him to be the more practical one.

(After a short discussion, it was decided:

that M. Clemenceau, as President of the Peace Conference, should address a note to the Diplomatic Representatives of the Neutral Powers at Paris informing them of the decision of the Council regarding economic pressure to be exercised upon Soviet Russia.)

[Page 491]

8. (The Council had before it a note from the Austrian Delegation dated September 17th, regarding the disturbances that had occurred in the Comitats of Western Hungary (Appendix “G”).)

M. Berthelot said that the Austrian Government asked that Allied Officers be sent to Western Hungary to protect the population from the disturbances which were occurring there at the present time. They further asked that an Interallied Commission might be sent to Oedenburg to prevent a repetition of the acts of violence which had occurred there, and to supervise the conduct of the Hungarian troops at the time of the evacuation of the territory in question. Note From the Austrian Government Regarding the Situation in the Comitats of Western Hungary

Sir Eyre Crowe said that it was a question of enforcing certain terms of the Austrian Treaty.

M. Berthelot suggested that officers might be detached for this duty from the Allied Military Missions at Vienna.

M. Scialoja said that there were still Hungarian troops in this territory because the new boundary between Austria and Hungary had not yet been officially notified to the Hungarian Government.

M. Pichon admitted that this was the case, and stated that the reason therefor was that no recognized Government had as yet been set up in Hungary.

Mr. Polk suggested that the Allied Generals in Budapest should be informed officially as to the frontier between Austria and Hungary and should be instructed to convey this information to the Hungarian authorities.

(It was decided:

that an Interallied Military Commission, composed of officers to be drawn from the Allied Military Representatives at Vienna or Budapest, should be sent to the Comitats of Western Hungary to assist in the maintenance of order in the territories granted to Austria by the Treaty of Saint Germain;
that this Mission should be under the orders of the Allied General Officers at Budapest;
that the Allied Generals at Budapest should be officially informed of the frontier between Austria and Hungary, as defined in the Peace Treaty of Saint Germain.)

(The Meeting then adjourned.)

Hotel de Crillon, Paris, October 2, 1919.

[Page 492]

Appendix A to HD–65


netherlands legation

No. 3681

From: Loudon.5

To: President Clemenceau.

By order of my Government, I have the honor to forward to Your Excellency a note relative to the provisions of the Peace Treaty concerning the regime of the Rhine, hereto annexed.

I would be deeply grateful to Your Excellency if you would kindly bring this note to the attention of the President of the Commission on the International Regime of Ports, Waterways and Railways.

Accept, etc.

[No signature on file copy]

[Note From the Netherlands Government]

Article 354, 2nd alinea, of the Peace Treaty establishes that in case of opposition regarding certain of the provisions of the Mannheim Convention, of October 17, 1868, and of the provisions of the General Convention referred to in Article 338, regarding their application relative to the Rhine, the provisions of the General Convention shall have precedence.

The Netherlands Government is perfectly aware of the High importance of a General Convention of the nature indicated, even if it is obliged to act contrary to Treaties existing between certain Powers. It esteems, however, that in such a case the collaboration of these Powers in the elaboration of the General Convention is indispensable, whether or not they be signers of the Peace Treaty. Such collaboration is especially indispensable at the time a question affecting the countries traversed by the great rivers which shall be controlled by the General Convention. It is the more important in that a profound study of the regime of these rivers—as well concerning the text of the Treaties as concerning their application—becomes necessary before the provisions of this Convention be definitely decreed.

It is true that a country non-signatory of the Peace Treaty, can, if it is a member of the League of Nations, become associated as such to the approbation of the General Convention which Article 338 requires on the part of the said League, but this is in no way equivalent to a direct collaboration.

In view of the preceding and considering the special situation of the Netherlands which form the delta of the three international rivers, [Page 493] the Netherlands Government believes itself justified in soliciting participation on an equal footing in the elaborations of the General Convention referred to in Article 338, and in the negotiations in connection with it.

Appendix B to HD–65

peace conference
commission on ports,
waterways and railways

The Secretary General of the Commission on Ports, Waterways and Railways.

To the Secretary General of the Peace Conference.

I have the honor to inform you that, at its last meeting the Commission on Ports, Waterways and Railways decided to direct the attention of the Supreme Council of the Allies to the necessity of opening as soon as possible, in view of the application of the Treaty with Germany, negotiations with the Dutch Government, within the purview of Article 354 of the Treaty, relating to modifications of the Convention of Mannheim of 1868.

Robert Haas

Appendix C to HD–65

office of the marshal
commander in chief of
the allied armies

General Staff G–2
4-bis, Bd. des Invalides

From: Marshal Foch,

To: President Clemenceau.

I have the honor to transmit you herewith a memorandum from the Polish Government stating the needs of Poland and how urgent it is to satisfy them.

Since the beginning of the war, Poland, the theatre of active operations, was subjected to the ebb and flow of the opposing armies. Little by little, it has been despoiled of all the things which are necessary to her existence; food, clothing, railroad material, factory material, raw materials; there remains to her no reserves.

Until now, by utilizing her last resources, and thanks to the favorable season, Poland has been able to form and maintain an army of 500,000 men, which, with the greatest valiance, has interposed between the Russian and Hungarian Soviets and has forced the Russian red armies to a quick and important withdrawal. That army is more than [Page 494] ever necessary to her; none of her frontiers is as yet settled, her internal situation has not been stabilized. The Russian Bolshevism still sees in her the principal obstacle which stopped its march towards the West; for Germany she is the obstacle which prevents her from colonizing Russia. Indispensable as it is to Poland, that army is none the less necessary to the Entente.

Now, that army is at present in the most complete destitution, as President Paderewski stated and as it has been noted by General Henrys and the officers sent by him on mission.

A large part of the army is still dressed with cotton uniforms; shoes, linen, overcoats, blankets, are lacking. That destitution has already had a bad influence on the health and the morale of the men which had both been maintained excellent until now. The results will be very much more serious when the first cold shall be felt in those regions where winter comes early [and?] is frightfully severe.

Munitions are lacking: the Polish army has at its disposal only from 50 to 80 rounds per gun.

Means of transportation are insufficient. There remains on the Polish railroads only ⅓ of the locomotives and ½ of the cars which circulated before the war; add to that that materials is [sic] in bad condition.

Taking into account from the request of the Polish Government only those of an immediate need, in order to exist the Polish Army should receive

about 600,000 equipments and especially warm clothing and overcoats, half for the beginning of October and the other half before the middle of December.

—munitions first, cartridges for infantry and machine guns, 75 and 155 shells and caissons;

—100 locomotives and 1500 cars for the special service of the army.

Poland can procure that material only by appealing to the great Allied and Associated Powers.

That help was favorably considered by the Supreme Council on June 27.6

I have the honor of asking you to kindly communicate immediately to the Supreme Council the request of the Polish Government, on account of the approaching bad season, and to present to it the following resolutions:

  • “1. The Great Allied and Associated Powers agree to contribute, as far as possible, to satisfy immediately the material needs of the Polish army.
  • “2. As a consequence, the General Staff of Marshal Foch, Commander-in-Chief of the Polish Army, is charged with: [Page 495]
    • a)fixing, after agreement with the Allied General Staffs, the participation of each of the Allied and Associated Powers to the delivery of material to the Polish army;
    • b)to study and to execute the shipment of that material to Poland in the best conditions of safety and rapidity.”

P. O., Major General

Memorandum on the Necessity of a Prompt and Effective Help From the Allies to Poland

The Polish armies have reached the line Berezina–Horyn. Pushed back by force, the soldiers of the Republic of the Soviets are withdrawing rapidly.

The Polish State, hardly reborn, has made danger disappear on that side, the danger which threatened the results of the Peace of Versailles.

But that success reached until now by Poland’s own means has no longer a local character today: it is already an event whose political scope increases from day to day, whose result is growing constantly; at the same time the efforts required by it are becoming too heavy for the rather small forces of the young State.

Poland, surrounded on all sides by her enemies, deprived of natural strategic frontiers, Poland, ruined by the war, with a very insufficient net of means of communications, engaged in a struggle on two fronts, has done her best to continue that struggle and to liberate the invaded regions, but she no longer can stand the weight alone.

Her army is suffering from lack of munitions and food stuffs; her soldiers, to the exception of the units organized in France, are badly and insufficiently clothed, often barefooted, without linen. Under these conditions, how can they spend the rigorous winter of Volhynia, where in the marshes and in the forest cold, famine and diseases are going to attack them. Already now, the mobilization of the classes called cannot be finished for lack of material. Besides, on account of the lack of armament and munitions, clothing and equipment, Poland shall be forced to demobilize very soon part of her divisions.

Consequently, the present state of affairs can be resumed in these words:

“Necessity of an urgent and effective help.”

That help must bear on three essential points whose necessity is very urgent:

Clothing and equipment for the troops.
Sufficient reserves of munitions (taking into account the very different systems of armaments.)
Improvement of communications so that the necessary transport might arrive in Poland still on time, before the beginning of winter.

[Page 496]

The rapid solution (before winter) of those questions alone will allow Poland to fulfill her task up to the end.

The Polish Army comprises at the present time 540,000 soldiers whose morale is excellent in spite of the above mentioned privations.

On November 15, Poland shall call the class of 1900 whose effectives might give 101,500 recruits.

On January 15 and March 15, part of the class of 1901 which is estimated at 75,000 men.

I. Taking into account the indispensable equipment for the army at the front for the winter season and the necessity to complete it before the month of October, 1919, Poland shall need before March 31, 1920, the material enumerated below:

Complete Uniforms and Linen Complete Equipment
For the recruits called on January 15 and March 15 78,200 75,200
For the recruits already called and trained but not yet equipped 66,000 76,000
For the Winter 540,000 108,000
Wear and tear and exchange of the old equipment on account of the bad quality of the cloth 417,300 27,300
Total 1,200,000 378,000
[1,101,500] [286,500]

To cover those needs we have at present in our warehouses about: 30,000

Bought but not yet delivered (from France) 50,000 complete

Part shall be furnished by the country. Aside from that we must receive from abroad within the following time limits:

1/X 1919 15/X 1919 1/XX 1919
Coats 400,000 100,000 100,000
Pants 400,000 100,000 100,000
Blouses 100,000 100,000 200,000
Loll bands 100,000 50,000
Ear laps 200,000
Flannel shirts 300,000 200,000 100,000
Under Drawers 300,000 200,000 100,000
Sock,(pairs) 600,000 400,000 200,000
Gloves 100,000 100,000 100,000
Shoes (large size) 200,000
Soles (pairs) 100,000 100,000 100,000
Sweaters 200,000 100,000 100,000
Blankets 300,000 100,000 100,000
Haversacks or bags 200,000 200,000 100,000
Break sacks 200,000 200,000 100,000
Cantine with cup 200,000 200,000 200,000
Cartridge boxes 400,000 400,000 200,000
Mess kits 300,000 150,000 150,000
Belts 300,000 200,000 100,000

Considerable clothing stocks which the Americans have left in France could at least satisfy part of the above mentioned needs.

II. Armament and Munitions. Table below indicated on the one hand the number of arms and munitions already ordered (but not yet [Page 497] delivered) and on the other hand the necessary material not yet bought for lack of credit.

Designation Ordered but not yet delivered Necessary but not bought for lack of credit Number of cars
Transport total Per month
Rifles and muskets of various types and systems 36,000 150,000 180 60
Machine guns and ammunition wagons 220 400 120 30
Ammunition for muskets and machine guns 220,000,000 120,000,000 1,000 200
75 mm. guns 400 200 50
Ammunition wagons 750 400 100
Ammunition for 75’s 400,000 800,000 1,200 240
Ammunition wagons for 105’s 50 30
155 shells (short) and ammunition wagons 240 120 40
Cartridges for 155 shorts 10,500 220,000 1,000 100
Mountain Guns 65 m/m 30 30 10
Shells for 65 m/m mountain guns 30,000 60 20
Cartridges size 120 4,000 20 10
Different Artillery Materiel 100 20
Total 4,660 900
[4,460] [880]

Aside from these needs of war material properly speaking, the absence of many other things is especially felt in the country.

In the first place, medical products and sanitary articles, rubber, automobiles (especially trucks), motors, spare parts, tools, harnesses, leather articles, etc.

III. For all those needs it is very important that the delivery should be assured before winter in a sure and rapid manner.

For that purpose, the first necessity for Poland is to be connected with the west by arteries of communication whose output shall insure the transportation of all the articles bought by Poland.

Up to the present those transportations arrive in Poland through 4 routes of a small output, notably:

Two trains daily (Polish) through Modane, Turin, Leoben, Vienna, Bohumin, Warsaw (lately stopped).
From two to four trains daily through Gdansk, Mlawa, Warsaw, reserved exclusively for foodstuffs.
One train weekly from Italy with artillery material and ammunitions.
From three to six trains daily through Coblenz, Ems, Wilhelmshöhe, Halle, Glogau, Leszno.

At the present time only the first three of those lines are functioning, not very satisfactorily. The line across Germany is no longer used.

[Page 498]

Since those lines of communication are very insufficient, it would be extremely necessary in order to insure a rapid liaison with the West:

I. To enlarge or eventually to build freight stations, and tracks for unloading in the most important points of Poland, as for example Warsaw, Lodz, Cracow, Lwow, Jaroslaw, Modlin, a work which Poland could undertake herself.

II. Increase the output of the existing lines, above mentioned, by more frequent trains, using especially the German line Gdansk, Mlawa, and the Italian line. One could for example have 3 or 4 Polish trains daily. By utilizing for the transportation of foodstuffs the waterway of the Vistula, one could use to a maximum the Gdansk line which could thus render great service.

III. Open new lines of communications as for example through Braila (15 locomotives will be necessary for that purpose), or through Switzerland.

IV. To reinforce the rolling stock of the Polish railways which at present is in a pitiable state, namely;

for a number of kilometres of:
In the Warsaw districts 3,226 kms.
In the Kadom 1,546
In the Cracow 1,924
In the Leopol 2,050
In the Stanislaw 1,128
Total 9,834

and military railways:

wide gauge 1,138 kms.
normal gauge 2,735
narrow gauge 936 kms.
Total 4,809 kkms.

Poland only owns at present:

4,525 passenger cars
1,269 box-cars
244 mail cars
21,901 covered freight cars
7,178 uncovered freight cars
21,272 coal cars
56 refrigerator cars
100 “foudre” cars
114 poultry cars
234 cattle cars
2,474 tank cars.
60,375 [59,367] cars, 2,110 of which must be returned abroad since they do not belong to the Polish Government.

[Page 499]

For that number of cars we have at our disposal only 2,354 locomotives, 1,200 of which are worn and cannot be of service without serious repairs.

The above mentioned figures which do not include the Posnania system, nor that of the reoccupied regions in the East, but include only the central part of Poland within the limits of the Congress of Vienna and Galicia; they show the imperious and urgent necessity of reinforcing the railroad material of Poland by at least:

2,500 locomotives and 70,000 freight cars.

It is only through a similar reorganization that the arteries newly created, as well as those already existing, would form a system of communication by which Poland would receive the supplies indispensable for the maintenance of the present situation and for her advance to the East.

Poland appreciates at its true worth the support which has been given her up to the present time.

The arms, munitions and generous assistance furnished by France, have permitted her to attain a brilliant success of very important extent.

The aid furnished by the United States and Great Britain in the form of hundreds of thousands of tons of supplies has saved millions of people from death by hunger.

It is with a heart full of gratitude that the Polish people agree to offer payment in blood for the maintenance of world peace as fixed in the basis of the Congress at Versailles.

But the necessity of the assistance explained above becomes each day more and more urgent. The result of this assistance would be the definite assurance of peace in the Orient.

Without this assistance—it is the needless loss of efforts and sacrifices; Poland would be placed on the eve of an inevitable crisis which could well be followed by the entire ruin of the country and of the army.

This is the reason why Poland, once again in a difficult situation, appeals to her Allies and calmly and confidently awaits their energetic assistance.


General and Vice Minister of War
[Page 500]

Appendix D to HD–65

office of the marshal
commander in chief
allied armies

General Staff
2nd Section
Paris, 4 bis Boulevard des Invalides
No. 3966

Note From General Weygand Suggesting an Amendment to the Resolution of September 27, 1919, Relative to the Repatriation of Czechoslovak Troops in Siberia, So As To Effect Also the Repatriation of Polish, Jugo-Slav and Rumanian Troops in Siberia

Marshal, Commander in Chief Allied Armies

The President of the Council
(Secretariat of the Peace Conference.)

The Supreme Council of the Allied Powers on the 27th of September adopted the following resolution:

“It is decided that a Commission composed of one American, British, French, Italian and Japanese officer should be created to deal with the repatriation of German, Austrian and Hungarian Prisoners in Siberia.

“It is also decided that the repatriation of the Czecho-Slovak troops in Siberia should be effected before that of the German, Austrian and Hungarian prisoners.”

I have the honor to call your attention to the fact that there are in Siberia, besides the Czecho-Slovak troops, considerable numbers of troops of allied nations which have at various times requested their repatriation.

Polish about 10,700
Jugo-Slavs 4,300
Rumanians 3,000

These contingents deserve to the same degree as the Czecho-Slovak to be repatriated before the German, Austrian and Hungarian prisoners.

I therefore have the honor to beg you to be good enough to submit the Supreme Council the following modification to the second paragraph of the resolution mentioned above:

“It is also decided that the repatriation of the Czecho-Slovak, Polish, Jugo-Slav and Rumanian troops in Siberia should be effected before that of the German, Austrian and Hungarian prisoners.”

P. O. the Major-General
[Page 501]

Appendix E to HD–65

Proposal To Hand Over the Battleship “Volya” to General Denekin

The British Admiralty has proposed that the Russian Battleship Volya which was handed over to the Allied and Associated Powers under Article 29 of the Armistice of November 11, 1918, should be transferred to General Denekin.

The Admiralty point out that the Volya is held in trust until there is a stable Government in Russia to which she can be returned. The Russian destroyer Derzhi which is now in the keeping of His Majesty’s Government and two Russian destroyers in the possession of the French Government have been transferred to General Denekin, while the Italian and Greek Governments have been asked similarly to transfer the Russian ships which they hold.

The overhauling and repairing of the Volya has involved considerable work and expense on the part of His Majesty’s Government, and the Admiralty hope that money and trouble will be saved if the Volya is sent to Sebastopol to be handed over to General Denekin. The British Delegation has the honor to recommend this proposal to the favorable consideration of the Supreme Council.

Appendix F to HD–65

From: The Secretary General of the Commission on International Labor Legislation.

To: The Secretary General of the Peace Conference.

I have the honor to inform you that I have received from the American Commission to Negotiate Peace a note dated September 29, containing the following remarks, to which I would call attention:

Finland has inquired regarding the possibility of sending delegates to the Conference. Norway and Holland have also inquired whether their delegates will be admitted in case they have not joined the League of Nations by October 29th. In view of the decision of the Supreme Council and of the President regarding the admission of German and Austrian Delegates, the United States Government presumes that no objection will be made to the admission of the Finnish Delegation and of the representatives of other nations who have not yet expressed their adhesion to the League.

The foregoing matters are brought to the attention of the Commission on International Labor Legislation by direction of the United States Government which requests that they may be submitted to the Supreme Council and the United States Government duly informed of any decisions reached.

[Page 502]

In transmitting this communication to the Secretariat General of the Conference, the Secretary of the Commission on International Labor Legislation believes it to be his duty to draw the attention of the Supreme Council to the advantage there would be in settling the question raised by Finland, Norway and Holland. In doing this there would be an opportunity for the Supreme Council to specify the meaning of its decision of September 11th,7 in indicating that the countries that had not declared their adhesion to the Society of Nations before October 29th, would nevertheless be authorized to send their delegates to Washington; that the question of the admission of these countries would be left to the Conference itself, and that that question would be decided immediately before the discussion of the basic questions appearing on the Conference’s order of the day.

Such a solution would have the advantage of quieting certain fears recently manifested by workmen’s organizations, fears which would result in prejudicing the success of the Conference.

Appendix 6 to HD–65

the chargé d’affaires of
the austrian republic

No. 1200

From: M. Mayrhauser, Chargé d’Affaires, pro tern.

To: M. Clemenceau.

The populations of the regions of western Hungary which, by the Treaty of St. Germain, have been attributed to Austria, have addressed themselves, through the intermediary of several deputations, to the Government of the Austrian Republic formulating the following grievances:

On September 6, 1919, a Hungarian military detachment presented itself to the commune of Gols, situated in the Comitat of Wieselburg, to take possession of the conscripts of the said commune. The conscripts having fled, the soldiers raged against the peasants who had been but spectators: a number of persons were wounded by shots and by blows from the butt of the guns.

The following day, a more numerous detachment penetrated into the village, arrested the fathers of the conscripts and transported them to the prisons of Deutsch-Altenburg.

At Oedenburg, the Hungarian troops, under the command of Colonel Boze, exercised a regime of terror. More than 600 workmen were arbitrarily arrested; they were abused in the prisons to such [Page 503] an extent that several among them succumbed to the torments to which they were subjected.

This attitude of the Hungarian troops in regions which, by virtue of the decision of the Peace Conference, are to be incorporated with Austria after the going into force of the Peace Treaty, makes us fear that the evacuation of western Hungary by the Hungarian troops will be accompanied by new acts of violence against a peaceful population, which, in spite of its desire to be attached to its nationals, has awaited with exemplary patience the decision of the Allied and Associated Powers giving satisfaction to this desire. The inhabitants of the countries menaced with such a fate notably fear that their cattle and the produce of their harvests [will?] become the object of seizures and sequestrations.

Moved by the grievances and by the apprehensions expressed by the deputations of the populations in despair, my Government addressed itself to the Missions of the Principal Allied and Associated Powers begging them to intercede with the Peace Conference in order that an Interallied Commission of officers be sent to Oedenburg to prevent by its presence the repetition of acts of violence of this kind and to control the attitude of the Hungarian troops when they evacuate the territory in question.

My Government has charged me to call the attention of Your Excellency to the above and beg it, in its name, to be kind enough to take into consideration the proposition above mentioned.

Please accept, etc.

The Chargé d’Affaires, pro tem.,
  1. British and Foreign State Papers, vol. lix, p. 470.
  2. British and Foreign State Papers, vol. lxii, p. 77.
  3. Ante, p. 185.
  4. Ante, p. 255.
  5. Dr. Jonkheer J. Loudon, Netherlands Minister at Paris.
  6. CF–96, minute 5, vol. vi, p. 726.
  7. HD–52, minute 4, p. 185.