The Secretary of State to the Ambassador in Great Britain (Harvey)

No. 812

Sir: You are requested to deliver to Lord Curzon a note in the following sense, concerning the case of Consul Slater and Vice Consul Brooks whose exequatur and recognition, respectively, were canceled by the British Government:

“On behalf of my Government, I have the honor to inform Your Lordship of the receipt of Your Lordship’s note of December 27, 1922,1 in which you state the decision of the British Government with regard to the cancellation of the exequatur and recognition, respectively, of Mr. Slater and Mr. Brooks, Consul and Vice Consul at Newcastle-on-Tyne.

“In the circumstances, I am instructed to inform Your Lordship that orders have been issued not to reopen the Consulate and to dispose of the lease of the Consular premises.

“May I call once more to your attention the fact that a thorough investigation, of which the British Government has been fully informed, was made of this case by officers of my Government and that the evidence secured convinced my Government that the charges preferred cannot be substantiated.

“My Government desires me, furthermore, once again to point out that although it has never questioned the right of the British Government to cancel the exequatur of an American Consul on the ground [Page 307] that he is persona non grata, it considers that when specific charges are advanced it is compelled to make the most thorough investigation in order to clear or to discipline the alleged offender. My Government must, moreover, call in question the accuracy of the parallel which Your Lordship found in the cancellation in 1856 by the Government of the United States of the exequaturs of the British Consuls at New York, Philadelphia and Cincinnati. The evidence against these Consuls was developed in judicial proceedings which showed them to be guilty of violating the laws and the sovereign rights of the United States.”

I am [etc.]

Charles E. Hughes