The Secretary of State to the High Commissioner in Haiti ( Russell )

No. 136

Sir: You are informed that the President has expressed his willingness that the American High Commissioner at Port au Prince should act in his name, without prior consultation with this Department, in presenting to the President of Haiti the nominations of subordinate officials to be appointed in accordance with the provisions of Articles II, X and XIII of the Treaty of September 16, 1915, between the United States and Haiti. You are authorized henceforth to present these nominations to the President of Haiti in the name of the President of the United States, without submitting the requests for the nominations through the Department.

Nominations of higher officials, including the Financial Adviser, the General Receiver and Deputy General Receiver of Customs, the Chief of the Gendarmerie, the Engineer-in-Chief, the Sanitary Engineer, the Agricultural Engineer and the Assistant Agricultural Engineer, together with the nominations of the officials provided for in Article II of the proposed agreement regarding the reorganization of the treaty officials connected with finances, if that agreement is consummated, will continue to be submitted by the Department to the President for approval, and you are requested to notify the Department promptly when a vacancy is about to occur in one of these positions, and to communicate to the Department any suggestions which you may have to make for filling the vacancy.

When the High Commissioner is absent from his post the duty of presenting nominations in the name of the President of the United States to the President of Haiti will be performed, like other duties of the High Commissioner, by the Chargé d’Affaires.

In the case of the customs service it is desired that all officials holding positions of authority and trust should be nominated to the President of Haiti in the name of the President of the United States in the manner above outlined. It is not believed that a liberal interpretation of the Treaty would require that the employees of the customs service who do not hold positions of authority and trust should be appointed upon the nomination of the President of the United States, and consequently, if there is no objection to this course on the part of the Haitian Government, this Government is willing that the minor employees of the customs service should be appointed by the Receiver General of Customs on his own responsibility.

[Page 394]

In the case of those positions which are filled by officers and enlisted men of the United States Navy, the Department is informed by the Secretary of the Navy that the following procedure should be followed:

The High Commissioner, or the Chargé d’Affaires in the High Commissioner’s absence, should submit to the Chief of the Bureau of Navigation in the case of naval personnel, and to the Major General Commandant in the case of Marine personnel, the names of the officers proposed for duty and acceptable to the Haitian Government, and the names of officers to be detached from duty with the Haitian Government. The Chief of the Bureau of Navigation and the Major General Commandant will issue the necessary orders.

In case enlisted men of the Navy are desired for service with the Haitian Government, the Navy Department requests that the selection be made from men serving with the Marine Brigade in Haiti who would be acceptable to the Haitian Government. Should the enlisted men thus nominated be available, the necessary orders will be issued by the Chief of the Bureau of Navigation. If it is impossible to make selections from the men serving with the Marine Brigade in Haiti, the Navy Department stated that the Bureau of Navigation will be pleased, upon the request of the High Commissioner, to order men to report to him for this prospective duty.

The enlisted men of the Marine Corps to be appointed to duty under the Haitian Government need not be referred to the Major General Commandant.

In the case of requests for nominations which may already have been transmitted by you to the Department before the receipt of this instruction, the Department will ascertain in the usual manner from the Secretary of the Navy whether the proposed nominations meet with his approval, and will then inform you, in order that you may make the nominations in the President’s name to the President of Haiti.

I am [etc.]

Charles E. Hughes