861.51/1492a

The Secretary of State to the Secretary of the Treasury (Mellon)

My Dear Mr. Secretary: I desire to refer to the arrangements made toward the close of 1917 for the liquidation of the financial [Page 880]business of Russia in this country, following the fall of the last recognized Russian Government.

It appears from the files of the State Department, and from published records, that the extraordinarily difficult task of dealing with the Russian financial situation in this country under the circumstances indicated was undertaken jointly by the State and Treasury Departments in cooperation with Mr. Boris Bakhmeteff, representing the last recognized Russian Government, and that contracts then outstanding with American manufacturers to the value of more than $102,000,000 were successfully liquidated with funds of the Russian Government amounting to much less than that sum. It is the understanding of the State Department that this process of liquidation has now been brought to a practical conclusion, and that such business as remains is in process of orderly settlement.

Having regard to recent public discussion of the subject, may I ask that you confirm these facts and furnish any additional information from the records of the Treasury Department which you may consider helpful to a public understanding of the matter?

I am [etc.]

Charles E. Hughes