893.5045/380: Telegram

The Chargé in China ( Mayer ) to the Secretary of State

409. My 399, September 14, 4 p.m.

On September 4th British gunboats began operations against strike pickets, stationing men-of-war in front of picket examination sheds and facing strike craft in harbor. This action has been entirely successful in achieving its purpose since I am now informed by British Legation that after discussion between British acting consul general and Eugene Chen the latter has addressed a communication to the British consulate general stating that the Municipal police had been reinstated in charge of wharves and the river strike pickets having [had] been cleared from these regions. Replying to this note the British acting consul general affirmed that in the premises British naval action would be discontinued. It appears that British naval forces cleared river and wharves of strike pickets without any resistance on their part or the firing of a single shot.
Chen is likewise seeking to reopen formal boycott settlement negotiations on a new basis which the British Legation state they now have under consideration.
The success which has attended British efforts in the above regard would seem to confirm the wisdom of adopting a firm policy at Canton which, while being eminently just, would compel the Cantonese by display of force, if necessary, to respect our treaty rights and the lives and property of our citizens. In this connection I respectfully refer to my number 401, September 14, 6 p.m.