The Consul at Tsinan (Stanton) to the Minister in China (MacMurray)95

No. 222


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As regards the five American missionaries, who as reported in my telegram of the 16th, elected to remain in Tenghsien, the Consulate can do nothing with them. The two missionaries who left Tenghsien report that the Chinese Christians desired them all to leave but that these five decided to remain partly because they believe the southern troops are no longer anti foreign and partly because they think the property of the Mission will suffer less if found by troops to be occupied by foreigners.

In regard to the evacuation of American citizens, the Legation is already aware that it is my belief that a good many American missionaries will decide to remain even if advised to leave because of their belief that there has been a radical change of heart amongst [Page 257] the Nationalists. It had been my intention to advise all Americans south of Tsinan to withdraw to Tsingtao or elsewhere should the northerners be unable to hold the Chiehho line, and to advise Americans in Tsinan and elsewhere in this district to withdraw when the southerners reach Taian. However, in view of the assurances given by the Nationalist Government regarding the protection of American life and property in connection with the settlement of the Nanking incident, it is requested that the Legation definitely instruct me whether American citizens should be advised to withdraw to Tientsin or Tsingtao in the event of a successful southern advance into this province.

I have [etc.]

E. F. Stanton
  1. Copy transmitted to the Department by the consul in his despatch No. 130, April 18; received May 21.