130 Baird, Annie

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

No. 519

Sir: I have the honor to refer to the Department’s instruction No. 232 of September 26, 1932, File No. 130–Baird, Annie, and to transmit herewith a copy of the note which on October 10 was addressed to the Foreign Office21 and a copy of the latter’s reply under date of November 28, from which it will be seen that the British authorities are not disposed to certify to the legality of Miss Baird’s adoption. The Embassy has informed the Consul at Dundee in this sense and has added that it was asking the Department to instruct it as to whether Miss Baird is still to be regarded as an American citizen. Instructions in that relation are accordingly respectfully requested.

Respectfully yours,

For the Ambassador:
Ray Atherton

Counselor of Embassy
[Enclosure]

The British Principal Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs (Simon) to the American Ambassador (Mellon)

No. L 5916/5308/405

His Majesty’s Principal Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs presents his compliments to the United States Ambassador and, with [Page 22]reference to Mr. Mellon’s Note No. 293 of October 10th last, relative to the case of Miss Annie Baird, has the honour to inform His Excellency that the Secretary of State for Scotland has intimated that, until the Adoption of Children (Scotland) Act, 1930, came into operation, adoption of children was not recognized by the law of Scotland, and had no legal effect in Scotland. That Act was not retrospective and, while the Secretary of State has no authority to give any binding opinion as to the effect of the agreement stated to have been entered into at Dundee in 1915 between the girl’s father, John Gardyne, and Mr. and Mrs. Baird, it appears to him that such an agreement could not have affected the personal status of Miss Baird so far as the law of Scotland is concerned.

  1. Not printed.