The Ambassador in China ( Johnson ) to the Secretary of State
[Received May 18.]
Sir: I have the honor to refer to the Embassy’s despatch No. 353 of April 7, 1936, on the subject of the re-registration of title deeds to property held by American citizens or organizations at Nanking, and to enclose for the information of the Department a copy of despatch No. 108 of April 2, 1936, from the Consulate General at Shanghai,34 reporting on a conversation held between Vice-Consul Jenkins35 and the Mayor of Nanking regarding the policy to be followed in that city. It will be observed that, according to the information submitted in that despatch, the Nanking municipal authorities are prepared to admit the right of holders of leases in perpetuity to transfer their holdings to Chinese citizens and to others entitled to hold such leases. These oral assurances, however, would not seem of themselves [Page 660] to constitute adequate guarantee of the nature of the policy to be followed in future by the Nanking Municipal Government and other administrative authorities as regards the matter under discussion, and the Embassy proposes to wait for a reply to its note of April 7, 1936, to the Foreign Office,36 before instituting any change in the present procedure of not advising American title-holders to apply for re-registration of their deeds until such time as there may have been a basic clarification of the question of right of transfer.