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Mr. Seward, Sec. of State, to Mr. Sullivan, min. to Colombia, No. 17,
See, also, same to same, No. 39, April 14, 1868, id. 272.
With reference to the vessels Quaker City and Florida, which after their departure from the United States, appeared to have been converted into men-of-war in Haytian waters, the Haytian Government intimated a desire that the United States should interfere by force to prevent the insurgents from using them. "It is the settled policy of this Government," said Mr. Fish, in reply, " to remain neutral in all controversies where its own honor or the welfare of its own citizens is not concerned. We would gladly see Hayti at peace with itself and with the world, and enjoying the wonderful advantages which a beneficent Providence has placed within the reach of its people. But we can not shut our eyes to the fact that the unhappy strife going on there partakes of the nature of a civil war, although not recognized as such by us. Both parties have armed forces in the field, each possesses a portion of the territory of the Republic, each controls ports and maintains armed vessels upon the high seas, and conflicts take place between both with varying success. If the United States under such circumstances give to the existing government the moral force of their recognition of it as the rightful ruler of the whole territory of the Republic, and withholds from the insurgents even the recognition of a state of war, all of which we are doing, that is the extent to which a neutral can be asked to go. The United States, reserving always their right to conform their policy to the existing facts as they occur, have, up to this time, steadily pursued the course which I have described towards the government to which you are accredited."
Mr. Fish, Sec. of State, to Mr. Bassett, min. to Hayti, No. 16, Oct. 13,
As to judicial proceedings subsequently taken in the case of the Quaker
Referring to the report of the United States consul at Guayaquil that the American steamer Charona, then in Peruvian waters, was about to be sold to Ecuadorian revolutionists, to be used in hostilities against the established government, Mr. Bayard said: "I do not see how this Government can in any way intervene in this case. The steamer in question is now within Peruvian jurisdiction. To purchase and fit her out there for hostile purposes is an offence, if at all, against the neutrality laws, not of the United States, but of Peru. It is to the Government of Peru that the Ecuadorian Government should address its remonstrances; and against Peru it must H. Doc. 551-vol 7-67
present any claims for damages that it may suffer from the action of the said vessel."
Mr. Bayard, Sec. of State, to Mr. McGarr, consul at Guayaquil, No. 20,
Mr. Bayard added that, if the steamer was within the jurisdiction of the
In 1885 Mr. Jacob Baiz, consul-general of Honduras at New York, complained that the American steamer City of Mexico, a passenger and freight vessel, had taken on board at Belize, when on her ordinary coasting route, some political refugees who, it was supposed, were meditating hostile action against the Government of Honduras. Mr. Baiz also alleged that the City of Mexico was about to carry a quantity of contraband of war from Jamaica to Honduras for the use of the revolutionists; and he asked that American men-of-war in Central American waters be instructed to watch the steamer. Mr. Bayard, who was then Secretary of State, replied that acts such as those complained of, even supposing that they might be considered as breaches of neutrality if committed within the jurisdiction of the United States, could not be imputed to the United States when committed in a foreign port; nor could it, he said, be justly urged that, because the vessel carried the American flag, it was the duty of the United States to send cruisers to watch her in order to prevent her from committing breaches of neutrality while passing from one foreign port to another. "For this Government," said Mr. Bayard, "to send armed vessels to such ports to control the actions of the City of Mexico would be to invade the territorial waters of a foreign sovereign. For this Government to watch its merchant and passenger vessels on the high seas, to stop them if they carry contraband articles or passengers meditating a breach of neutrality, would impose on the United States a burden which would be in itself intolerable, which no other nation has undertaken to carry, and which the law of nations does not impose. Whether the City of Mexico, when she returns to her home port, or those concerned in her or in this particular voyage, may be subject to adverse procedure under our neutrality statutes, I have not deemed it necessary here to discuss or decide."
Mr. Bayard, Sec. of State, to Mr. Hall, min. to Central America, No. 325,
In August, 1885, Mr. Bayard brought to the notice of the Secretary of the
sel's cargo and equipment, nothing indicating an intent to violate the neutrality laws could be found, and that no information of anything tending in that direction had been obtained. He therefore inquired whether there was any objection to granting the vessel a clearance. Mr. Bayard answered that none was perceived; and the steamer duly sailed. (For. Rel. 1885, 138-144.)
In connection with the subject of seizure of vessels, in relation to the right of search, see a series of able articles by James C. Welling, in the National Intelligencer, June 1, 1858, and other issues.
In 1898, Mr. Merry, American minister to some of the Central American States, on hearing that an American vessel which had sailed from Salvador was suspected of carrying a revolutionary expedition against the Government of Nicaragua, issued a circular letter to consular officers within his jurisdiction instructing them to make inquiries, and, if the result should justify the step, authorizing them to call upon the commander of any American man-of-war within reach "to examine her papers and seize her if found to be engaged in an illegal voyage in violation of the statutes of the United States." With reference to this circular, the Department of State said: "There is not, so far as the Department is aware, any statutory provision authorizing the seizure of a vessel under such conditions. Section 5287 of the Revised Statutes, which provides for the seizure of vessels under certain stated circumstances, is not applicable to the case of vessels fitted out beyond the jurisdiction of the United States. It is entirely proper for you to call upon the consular officers to make inquiry as to the truth of the charges against the vessel, and to furnish to this Government any evidence tending to show that the Celia has violated the neutrality laws of the United States by preparing for such expedition within the waters of the United States. Further than this, there is no authority for a minister or consul to act."
Mr. Sherman, Sec. of State, to Mr. Merry, No. 66, March 25, 1898, MS.
10. DUTY UNDER EXTRATERRITORIAL JURISDICTION.
In 1867 the Japanese Government, as represented by the Tycoon, sent two commissioners to the United States to purchase ships of war. They bought from the Government of the United States the ironclad ram Stonewall, the price being $400,000, of which the sum of $300,000 was paid, the rest to be transmitted to the United States through the American legation in Japan. The ram was sent out to Japan under Captain George Brown, U. S. N., who was granted leave of absence, to act as the agent of the Japanese
commissioners in taking the vessel to Yokohama. Before her arrival there war broke out between the Tycoon and the Mikado; and on February 28, 1868, the diplomatic corps in Japan agreed upon and signed a memorandum in which they declared that the only way to preserve a perfect neutrality between the contending parties was to regard them both as belligerents, and that, as vessels of war had been ordered by princes belonging to both parties, in Europe as well as in America, they had decided to use their utmost endeavors to prevent the delivery of the vessels in question on their arrival. In acknowledging receipt of the American legation's report of this proceeding, Mr. Seward, who was then Secretary of State, remarked that the course which had been marked out seemed in regard to the Stonewall to be impracticable, since the vessel was delivered to the Japanese Government in American waters and was placed under the Japanese flag, her officers and crew being employees of the Japanese Government and not in the service of the United States. Under these circumstances, it was thought that no agent of the Government of the United States had a lawful right to reduce the vessel into possession, or to interfere with her movements. The subject was, however, left to the legation's discretion. Before these instructions were written the Stonewall arrived in Japan and was kept by the legation under the American flag. The legation reported that if she could have been delivered all the money due on her would have been promptly paid by the Tycoon's government; but that, as that government to all appearances had subsequently ceased to exist, and the Mikado's government had not taken possession of Yedo, the Stonewall had been kept at Yokohama, the legation having provided for her expenditures while there. The legation, in a communication to Captain Brown, written immediately on the arrival of the Stonewall, directed that the vessel should be kept under the American flag and not delivered into the hands or control of any Japanese until instructions, which had been applied for, should have been recieved from the Department of State. Representatives of the Tycoon claimed the vessel, but the legation declined to permit her to be delivered up; and the legation at the same time refused to deliver her to the government of the Mikado. November 12, 1868, Mr. Seward, instructed the legation as follows: "Your proceeding in retaining possession and control of that vessel [the Stonewall] is approved. We, nevertheless, anxiously await such a solution of the political complication in Japan as will enable this Government to relieve you of that embarrassment.”
For the correspondence in relation to the case of the Stonewall, see Dip.
The position of the United States is that the principles of neutrality are applicable to China. In the case of the Tonquin war, in 1885, the Department of State, referring to the course which the United States had pursued in their international conflicts, and in the recent wars between Russia and Turkey and between Chile and Peru, directed the American minister at Peking that he was, so far as he had opportunity, to "enjoin upon all American citizens in China the necessity and importance of their due observance of the laws and obligations of neutrality, watching at the same time with care and diligence the interests and rights of such American citizens regarding their persons, property, ships, and commercial privileges."
Mr. Frelinghuysen, Sec. of State, to Mr. Young, min. to China, No. 382,
In March, 1885, Mr. Young, American minister at Peking, referring to the war then going on between France and China, cabled to his Government as follows: "Chinese object American pilots French men-of-war. Shall I forbid such service?" To this inquiry Mr. Bayard replied: "Although well disposed, we can not forbid our citizens serving under private contract at their own risk. Not prohibited by statutes or cognizable by consuls." In confirming this reply by a formal instruction, Mr. Bayard adverted to the fact that, while the obligation of a neutral government to prevent the commission of hostile acts was usually limited to things done within its own jurisdiction, foreign powers possess extraterritorial jurisdiction in China by virtue of treaties. But this jurisdiction was, he said, in no wise arbitrary, but was limited by laws, and was not preventive, but punitory. In this relation Mr. Bayard cited section 4102, R. S., which provides that "insurrection or rebellion against the government of either of those countries [i. e., the countries named in sec. 4083, whereof China is one] with intent to subvert the same, and murder, shall be capital offenses, punishable with death," and added: "But the simple act of entering into a private contract to serve either combatant in open warfare would not appear to be triable under this section; and even if it were, this Government would have no rightful power to forbid such service. It is, of course, understood that this reasoning does not apply to persons in the employ of the Government of the United States. For such persons, while so employed, to perform hostile service for either party would be a breach alike of discipline and neutral good faith, which the rules of the service would be competent to prevent."
Mr. Bayard, Sec. of State, to Mr. Young, min. to China, No. 407, March 11, 1885, For. Rel. 1885, 160.
Mr. Bayard further said: "In the interest of good will between nations, it is desirable that citizens of the United States should not take part