The Minuter in China (Schurman) to the Secretary of State

No. 152

Sir: I have the honor to refer to my despatch No. 58, dated October 4th, 1921,27 on the subject of the interruption of traffic on the Upper Yangtze and enclosing copies of despatches from the American Consul General, Hankow, dated September 22nd, and September 30th, 1921.27

In this connection there is enclosed in triplicate copy of a further despatch from the Consul General at Hankow, No. 288, dated October 28th, 1921, with enclosures.27 The attention of the Department is called to the fact that the authorities of the Chinese Maritime Customs at Chungking and Hankow, as well as the Revenue Council at Peking, are unwilling to sanction the use of the American flag on Chinese-owned junks chartered by American firms as being contrary to Article IV of the Chungking Agreement between Great Britain and China (1890) by which the chartered junk traffic between Ichang and Chungking is governed. This article provides that the use of the British flag by vessels the property of Chinese is strictly prohibited. (See Customs Treaties between China and Foreign Countries, Vol. 1, page 319).

The instructions of the Department are requested as to whether or not the Legation should insist on the use of the American flag on chartered junks on the Upper Yangtze in view of the position taken by the Customs authorities.28

I have [etc.]

Jacob Gould Schurman
  1. Not printed.
  2. Not printed.
  3. Not printed.
  4. Apparently no further instructions were given by the Department.