The Minister in Norway (Swenson) to the Secretary of State

No. 987

Sir: In reply to the Department’s instruction No. 331 of February 16, 1927, with regard to the Polarfront Company’s claim on the Island of Mayen, I have the honor to enclose a translation of a note dated April 30, 1927, from the Norwegian Foreign Office in which it is denied that Mr. Ekerold occupied land in his own name in 1922. The note also states that the Polarfront Company’s fox farms lie partly on land belonging to the Meteorological Institute.

I have [etc.]

Laurits Swenson
[Page 481]

The Norwegian Minister for Foreign Affairs (Lykke) to the American Minister (Swenson)

Mr. Minister: With reference to my last note of the seventh ultimo regarding two of the fox farms established by the Polarfront Company on the Island of Jan Mayen, I have the honor to advise that the Norwegian Meteorological Institute asserts that when the Institute, as was stated in a note dated May 17, 1926, from the Norwegian Minister at Washington to the Department of State,6 extended its occupation to include the whole of the Island of Jan Mayen, Mr. Ekerold was engaged in no other occupation on the Island than that which he undertook on behalf of the Institute and which is dealt with in the note dated April 21, 1922, from the Norwegian Minister at Washington to the Department of State.7

As to the statement made in your note of the third ultimo to the effect that the fox farms in question lie outside of the area which Mr. Ekerold at the time claimed on behalf of the Institute, I must not fail to say that it is evident from investigations which I have had made that the fox farms lie partly outside and partly within that portion of Jan Mayen which, as stated in the above-mentioned note of April 21, 1922, was previously occupied by the Institute.

With regard to the statement in your note that the fox farms in question are situated in areas where Mr. Ekerold manifestly placed claim stakes in his own name in 1922, I must advise that according to the results of the investigation conducted no such claim stakes have been seen, known, or previously mentioned.

In concluding I have the honor to add that there has come to the Foreign Office no announcement from Mr. Ekerold of occupation in his own name of any part of Jan Mayen and, as far as is known by the Foreign Office, Mr. Ekerold has done nothing to assert title to such alleged occupation.

I beg [etc.]

Ivar Lykke