The General Solicitor of the Standard Oil Company of New Jersey (Swain) to the Secretary of State

Sir: Under date of August 3rd, 1920, 1 had occasion, as Chairman of the Executive Committee of the Association of Producers of Petroleum in Mexico, to write you generally on the subject of violation by the Mexican Government of American rights in oil lands in that country by reason of concessions granted on the so-called “Federal Zone”.

I now beg to advise you that applications have been filed for Federal Zone concessions in front of lands on the Panuco River [Page 222] belonging to the Compañia Transcontinental de Petroleo, S.A., the wholly owned Mexican subsidiary of this Company, as follows:

Expediente No. 25–A, dated August 26, 1920, published in the Diario Official Sept. 11, 1920: Application by David Fernandez de Jauregui and Miguel Gomez, Mexicans.
Expediente No. 26–A, dated Sept. 1, 1920, published in the Diario Official Sept. 9, 1920: Application by Marine Duran Hernandez of Mexico City.

Petitions of this character are, I understand, being granted in numbers as a matter of course, and we apprehend that the petitions above mentioned will have favorable consideration despite the fact that our local people are taking all possible steps of protest before the proper authorities.

The only claim of right in the Mexican Government to issue concession on our properties can be predicated only on Article 27 of the Constitution of 1917, and the exercise of such pretended right will clearly be confiscatory as to us, the owners and lessees of the properties.

I do not recall that I have heard from the Department with reference to the subject matter of my letter of August 3rd, 1920, other than its courteous acknowledgment thereof under date of August 16th, 1920,48 which latter contained the advice that protest was being informally made at Mexico City. I shall be interested if the Department can advise me of any further developments or can take action in regard to the specific matters mentioned above.

I am [etc.]

C. O. Swain
  1. Not printed.