893.00/3397: Telegram

The Consul General at Tientsin (Fuller) to the Secretary of State

Following from Legation at Peking:

“Number 185, July 16, 11 p.m. After initial success Tuan troops outflanked by Wu Pei Fu and driven back towards Mentoukou with serious losses. High circles Peking very apprehensive regarding return to Peking of defeated troops but uninformed public calm.

Tuan troops have made advance along railway from Peking towards Tientsin, now reported Yangtsun. Wounded arriving in Peking from both battle areas.

Rail communication with Tientsin suspended since Thursday afternoon and wire communication since this morning. Dean of diplomatic corps this afternoon addressed vigorous note to Minister of Foreign Affairs declaring violation of protocol of 190121 intolerable and that if Government unable to maintain free communication he would propose to colleagues to consult regarding military action to be taken. Receiving unsatisfactory oral reply dean of the diplomatic corps convoked meeting of the corps where situation discussed. Disclosed at the meeting that British Legation had since then endeavored negotiating independently with Tuan and Tsao Kun for passenger traffic through front lines. This action based on financial rights in line. Arrangement no longer successful. Four powers going Tientsin [sic]. Sending train to investigate. This sent by wireless telegraph to Tientsin. Signed by Crane.”