195/598: Telegram

The Acting Secretary of State to the Ambassador in France (Herrick)

254. Department’s instruction of June 2 and telegrams of July 10, 3 p.m.39 and July 24, 6 p.m.

Please again call attention of Foreign Office to question of inspection of Dollar Line Steamers and, in view of urgency of situation arising from call of Steamer President Adams at Marseilles (now reported to arrive August 27), if you have not received reply make protest against further delay and urge early favorable action. The matter should not be allowed to drag along until the President Adams reaches Marseilles.
Department notes statements in correspondence between Embassy and Consulate Marseilles transmitted with Consulate’s despatch 974, July. 11,40 of which presumably Embassy has copy, to the effect that the United States does not recognize certificates issued by the French Government though most other leading countries do recognize them. The Department is advised by the Steamboat Inspection Service that the United States recognizes certificates of inspection issued by the French Government to French passenger vessels under reciprocal agreement with the Government of the United States.
In view of paragraph 2 above, and in view of French recognition of Lloyds but not American Bureau (see Department’s 243, July 24, 6 p.m.), it is difficult to understand on what grounds French authorities undertake to require Dollar Line vessels, which hold United States Government inspection certificates, to undergo inspection by French maritime officials.

Please endeavor to ascertain the grounds on which French Government requires inspection of Dollar Line vessels, consulting Consul at Marseilles if necessary, and report to Department by telegraph all particulars obtainable concerning reasons for attitude of French Government in this matter, giving references to laws and decrees on which French position is based and mailing copies if not already forwarded Suggest you communicate with agent of Dollar Line, Paris, which is understood to be United States Lines, 1 Rue Auber, which may know or which may be able to ascertain informally from Ministry Marine precise nature of inspection in question.

Transmit copy hereof and copies of other correspondence with Department on this subject to Consul at Marseilles for his information.

  1. Telegram of July 10 not printed.
  2. Not printed.