882.635 Neep/7: Telegram

The Minister in Liberia ( Walton ) to the Secretary of State

47. Your telegram No. 24, October 13, 6 p.m. For McBride. Suggestions regarded as most helpful and timely by President Barclay.

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Legislature will change article IV section C to provide a 25 per cent royalty on selling price of ore rather than fixed royalty. Information is sought as to the normal selling price when armament races are not in progress.

The legislature will change article IV section E limiting employment to 150 white employees.

Upon my suggestion, Judge Fisher now here will be asked to cooperate to insure accomplishment of purposes desired in article IV section I. Please advise if section I of article IV were amended by the addition “nor shall any of the shares of Neep, or any interest therein, without such consent, be transferred to or held by other than Netherlands nationals” would this infringe rights under existing treaties of nationals of other treaty powers not so authorized to hold shares?

Selection of Cape Mount instead of Monrovia as site for proposed harbor basin is a moot question, on which I have hesitated to raise with the President until now, although I have freely expressed my view to Secretary Simpson55 and Secretary Dennis, also to Messrs. Saben56 and Caffe, both of whom favor Monrovia. The President agreed with my contention that a Government-property basin would not be desirable in front of the Legation site. However, he thinks Monrovia offers more advantages in the development of export trade because of its geographical location and it is a focal point of roads tapping the interior. When asked if a new Legation site would be agreeable I replied in the negative, stating architect’s plans have been largely influenced by topography and if new blueprints had to be made there was no telling when Legation would be ready for occupancy. I referred to my reluctancy to live in present quarters much longer.

My belief is that with strong objections registered by the three countries directly concerned, United States, Great Britain and France, a final decision could be reached to build harbor at Cape Mount.

Walton
  1. Clarence L. Simpson, Liberian Secretary of State.
  2. Maxwell Saben, administrative specialist employed by the Liberian Government.