The Chargé in Honduras (Gibson) to the Secretary of State

No. 1264

Sir: I have the honor to acknowledge the receipt of the Department’s instruction No. 631 of October 17, 1934,30 directing this Legation to inform the Honduran Government of the appropriations made by the Congress of the United States toward cooperation with other governments in connection with the survey and construction of the proposed Inter-American Highway and inviting recommendations as to the ways in which these funds may be expended to the best advantage.

In accordance with this instruction, the Foreign Office has been advised of these appropriations and the Legation has inquired whether the Honduran Government will accept the route through Honduras laid down in the reconnaissance survey report, a copy of which, in accordance with the Department’s instruction of May 28, 1934,31 was furnished the Honduran Government.

From a cursory study of the proposed highway in Honduras and the general reaction to it here, I feel that the best recommendation would be for the United States Government to carry out what the Department states it intends doing, that is to expend the appropriations in the United States for road building machinery and other equipment which could not be purchased by Honduras but which is essential for the construction of such a highway. The public interest felt in Honduras for the highway cannot be called great, particularly as not more than ninety miles will be through Honduran territory, and due to the present condition of the finances, even were the interest greater, the appropriation of any funds for materials is out of the question. The construction of an all weather highway, eighteen feet wide, across swampy, low-lying territory with numerous bridges and trestles made necessary by the broken nature of the country is therefore impossible without abundant assistance in the way of building materials and skilled engineers from outside sources.

This need for road building equipment of all kinds was explained to Minister Lay by President Carías some eight months ago and it was pointed out by him at that time that with such a contribution Honduras would supply the labor which would expedite the building of the Honduran section.

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There is enclosed copy and translation of the note from the Honduran Foreign Office with respect to the route acceptable to the Honduran Government, as well as remarks on the type of pavement to be used.

Respectfully yours,

Raleigh A. Gibson

The Honduran Minister for Foreign Affairs (Bermudez) to the American Chargé (Gibson)

No. 4418

Sir: In answer to your courteous note No. 631 of October 23, I have the honor to bring to your attention the following communication:

“Ministry of Fomento, Agriculture and Public Work: Tegucigalpa, November 10, 1934, No. 895, Mr. Minister: In answer to your courteous note of October 26, in which you kindly transcribe to this Ministry Note No. 631 of the Legation of the United States of America, relating to the report presented by the Bureau of Public Roads of the Department of Agriculture of the United States, referring to the reconnaissance survey for the proposed inter-American highway, which starting at New Laredo will pass through Mexico, Central America and Panama, especially to that part which refers to the Honduran section; and with the object of learning the opinion of our Government as to the most acceptable choice which said route should take in so far as it concerns our country, I have the honor to inform you that in the said study it is seen that the United States Commission contemplated two routes for the Honduran section: one that crosses the country from East to West passing through Tegucigalpa and the other Central Departments to the frontier of El Salvador and the other close to the Gulf of Fonseca, passing through the cities of Nacaome and Choluteca. This Ministry thinks that for reasons of a economic nature, we must consider as practicable only the Gulf route; a route which agrees in general terms with that recommended by our Department of Roads. In regard to the type of pavement, which includes the Highway to the South, I judge that the second type should be adopted, to which the report that we are discussing refers, or macadam with superficial oil treatment. With all consideration, I am, Very Sincerely Yours, (signed) Salvador Aguirre. To the Minister for Foreign Affairs. His Office.”

I avail myself [etc.]

Antonio Bermúdez M.
  1. See footnote 11, p. 476.
  2. Not printed.