The Secretary of State to the Ambassador in Great Britain (Dawes)

No. 520

Sir: The Department has received your despatch No. 761, dated March 25, 1930, with enclosure concerning the British Colonies and Protectorates which have not adhered to the Convention concluded between the United States and Great Britain on March 2, 1899, relative to the disposal of real and personal property in the respective countries. Several small islands and Protectorates of limited territorial extent are included in this list. It may be found difficult for the local authorities of the United States to differentiate between the British Colonies and Protectorates in which the Convention of March 2, 1899, is in effect and those listed in the second paragraph of the Foreign Office note dated March 24, 1930.

You are, accordingly, instructed to take up the matter again with the Foreign Office and to inquire whether any special reasons exist for excluding Americans resident in the Colonies and Protectorates listed in paragraph 2, their heirs, legatees or donees, from the benefits of this Convention. You will add that the Department has had under consideration the procedure by which local authorities in the United States might be advised that British subjects from the Colonies and Protectorates listed in the second paragraph of the Foreign Office note or their heirs, legatees or donees were not entitled to take advantage of the provisions contained in the Convention. However, as it was thought that this may lead to some misunderstanding on the part of the local authorities, the Department desires before taking such action, to ascertain whether the British Government [Page 136] intends to adhere to the Convention on behalf of any of these Colonies and Protectorates.

Please submit a report setting forth the action taken by you pursuant to this instruction.

Very truly yours,

For the Secretary of State:
William R. Castle, Jr.