Page images

Guatemala in that connection, I have the honor to inform you that, in compliance with the request contained in your letter of even date, that so far as practicable the agencies of this Department be exerted to prevent the violation of the neutrality laws of the United States. The following telegram has this day been sent to the commanding officer of the U. S. S. Machias, now at Puerto Cortez, Honduras:

"Informed by State Department of departure from New Orleans yesterday by steamer Managua, ostensibly for Puerto Barrios, of a numerous well-organized armed expedition, intending to foment insurrection in Honduras. You take such action as may be necessary under the neutrality laws of the United States to prevent the commission of hostile acts by this expedition, fitted out in the United States against a friendly government. Acknowledge and report by cable such action as you may take." JOHN D. LONG, Secretary.

Very respectfully,

No. 122.]

Mr. Hay to Mr. Beaupre.

Washington, March 6, 1899.

Supplementing my instruction of the 4th instant, No. 121, communicating correspondence with the Navy Department in regard to the reported departure of a filibustering expedition from New Orleans for Puerto Barrios, Guatemala, I have to inclose for your information copy of a letter from the Secretary of the Treasury reporting the arrival at New Orleans of alleged filibusters and the watch kept upon their movements.

I am, etc.,



The Secretary of Treasury to the Secretary of State.

Washington, March 3, 1899.

SIR: I have the honor to transmit herewith, for your information, a copy of a telegram, dated the 2d instant, from the collector of customs at New Orleans, relative to 116 alleged filibusters at that port.

A similar letter has been addressed to the honorable the Secretary of the Navy and Attorney-General. Respectfully, yours,


L. J. GAGE, Secretary.

Mr. Wimberly to the Secretary of the Treasury.


NEW ORLEANS, March 2, 1899. Referring Department's telegram yesterday, about 116 alleged filibusters reached here from Kansas City about noon. Discouraged in attempt to sail, 67 these men returned to Kansas City last night via Yazoo and Mississippi Valley Railroad. Remainder still here and are being closely watched.

No. 155.]

A. T. WIMBERLY, Collector.

Mr. Beaupre to Mr. Hay.

Guatemala, March 16, 1899.

SIR: I have the honor to report that the threatened invasion of Honduras by filibusters seems to have been entirely averted. The Presi

dent of this Republic took prompt measures to prevent their landing in Guatemala, and when it was disclosed that a number of the leaders were already here they were placed under close surveillance, and have been since sent out of the country, or, rather, permitted to leave. Some arms and ammunition brought in by the filibusters were seized by the Government authorities and are still held.

It is quite certain that there is no further danger in the near future, but it is my opinion that another attempt will be made at the first available opportunity.

Gen. H. O. Jeffers and Col. J. Bascom Jones, with ten or twelve others (all Americans) have returned to Costa Rica, from whence they came, while General Vasquez and Colonel Drummond are supposed to be at New Orleans.

Colonel Drummond is the man who organized the expedition in the United States. He is a British subject, but formerly lived in Honduras. He is very bitter in his hatred of that republic, because of alleged personal injuries and wrongs suffered by him there.

I have, etc.,

A. M. BEAUPRE, Chargé d'Affaires ad interim.

Mr. Hay to Mr. Beaupre.


No. 128.]

Washington, March 17, 1899.

SIR: I have to acknowledge the receipt of your dispatch No. 147, of the 3d instant, confirming your telegram of the 28th ultimo, in relation to the reported departure of filibusters from the United States for Puerto Barrios, Guatemala, with designs against Honduras, and giving additional information.

In reply I inclose herewith, for your information, a copy of a letter from the Secretary of the Treasury, showing the action taken by his Department in the matter.

I am, etc.,



The Secretary of Treasury to Secretary of State.

TREASURY DEPARTMENT, Washington, D. C., March 14, 1899.

SIR: Referring to your letter dated the 6th instant, relative to 116 alleged filibusters, I have the honor to transmit herewith, for your information and any suggestion that you may think proper to make to this Department, a copy of a letter dated the 11th instant from the collector of customs at New Orleans, setting forth the action taken by him in relation to the alleged filibusters in question, and to the alleged attempt to export 52 cases of arms and ammunition.

Respectfully, yours,



Mr. Howell to the Secretary of the Treasury.
Port of New Orleans, La., March 11, 1899.

SIR: On the 1st instant this office received the following telegram from the Department:


United States minister at Managua, Nicaragua, requests that expedition stated to Joseffilibustering character be prevented from leaving your port for Honduras, and

Secretary State requests that agencies of this Department be exerted to prevent violation neutrality laws. Attention invited to newspaper statements regarding departure of organization from Kansas City and your port on steamer Managua for Puerto Barrios. Minister Guatemala represents that expedition is numerous and well organized; that its ostensible purpose in proceeding to Puerto Barrios is to engage in the operations of railway construction, but that real motive is believed to be disturbance of the peace of Central America by fomenting an insurrection there, presumably in Honduras. He states that Government of Guatemala purposes to prevent landing of expedition at Puerto Barrios. Report matter to United States attorney and take any proper action practicable to prevent violation law."

To the above the following reply was sent on the next day:

"Referring Department's telegram yesterday: About 116 alleged filibusters reached here from Kansas City about noon. Discouraged in attempts to sail, 67 of these men returned to Kansas City last night, via Yazoo and Mississippi Valley Railroad. Remainder still here and are being closely watched."

Inspectors of customs were, by my order, placed at once at all the steamship landings, the railroad depots, and the two inlets to the city from Lake Pontchartrain, with instructions to prevent the departure of any suspicious passengers, and to report all such to this office without delay.

The leaders of the expedition, ascertaining that these precautions had been made, and finding it impossible to take their men out without a clash with the Government authorities, abandoned the whole project, paying the fare back to Kansas City of such of the men as desired to return. As reported, forty-odd of the men remained in the city and have been attempting to leave for Honduras or other Central American countries in small groups.

On the 8th instant clearance was withheld from the Olympia until 6 steerage passengers, bound for Puerto Cortez, could be examined. Sufficient evidence to hold these men could not be obtained, and they were allowed to depart.

Clearance was withheld from the steamship Breakwater on the morning of the 9th instant until 8 steerage passengers could be examined. This examination developed the fact that a majority of these men were discharged soldiers from the Fifth Missouri Volunteer Infantry, and were a part of the Kansas City expedition. The owners of the Breakwater, who were present at the examination, after hearing the evidence, on their motion, refused to take these men as passengers. The consular agent at Honduras had been invited by me to be present during this examination, and was on hand.

Realizing that more of the men who remain in the city from the Kansas City expedition would attempt to leave, this office sent the following telegram to the Department on the 9th instant:

Referring Department telegram 1st instant, and office telegram following day, parties of 6 or 8 of the forty-odd remaining from Kansas City expedition are seeking steerage passage for Honduras. United States attorney advises not to interfere, as they carry no arms and there is no definite evidence on which to base proceedings. Held steamer Breakwater this morning until 8 of these passengers could be examined. After examination, owners vessel, of their volition, refused to take men as passengers. Instructions requested."

To the above reply was received from the Department as follows:

"Department understands that passengers you mention as filibusters will not be allowed to proceed to Honduras on steamer Breakwater. Further instructions from Department seem unnecessary at present.'

[ocr errors]

On the 10th instant the Bluefields Steamship Company took out 15 laborers of the steamship Condor. These men were carefully examined, and there was no evidence to show that they were part of the Kansas City expedition. The consular agent of Honduras stated to this office, in writing, that he was satisfied that the men were bona fide laborers, and that he had no objection to their proceeding to Honduras. They were, therefore, allowed to take passage.

Instructions were requested in office telegram of the 9th instant, for the reason that several of the Kansas City crowd still remained in the city, and because the United States attorney expressed the opinion that as the men carried no arms or went on an armed vessel this office had no right to interfere. A most careful scrutiny is still being made of all persons seeking passage on any of the vessels bound for Central America, and instructions are requested whether any persons suspected to belong to the Kansas City expedition should be prevented from taking passage notwithstanding that he may have no arms.

Referring to Department's telegram of the 4th instant to the effect that advice had been received that 52 cases arms and ammunition had been shipped to Mobile en route for Guatemala, I beg to say that this office has taken special precautions to

FR 99 -24

prevent the shipment of arms or munitions of war to any of the Central American countries. These precautions are still carefully observed. In a number of instances where ships have laden merchandise deemed by the inspector in charge to be subject to suspicion the packages have been opened by the agent of the vessel at the request of this office. In each case the merchandise has been found to be as manifested.

In the case of 32 packages gunpowder manifested as blasting powder, to be shipped to Costa Rica, the Costa Rican consul advised this office not to allow the packages to go forward. The Snyder Banana Company, agents of the vessel, itself volunteered to reject the powder as freight.

This office is of opinion that no contraband goods nor men who propose to engage in the filibustering enterprises have left this port recently. Acting in conjunction with the United States attorney, this office has been careful, in all instances where a question arose as to the propriety of a shipment of goods or departure of men, to act without exercising its authority, the agents or owners of vessels in each instance taking upon themselves, by advice of this office, the responsibility of refusing the shipments or passengers.

Respectfully, yours,

Mr. Beaupre to Mr. Hay.

A. N. HOWELL, Special Deputy Collector.

No. 158.]


Guatemala, March 21, 1899.

SIR: I have the honor to transmit inclosed a translation of a note received by this legation from the Hon. Angel Ugarte, chargé d'affaires of Honduras, concerning the recent filibustering expedition, and a copy of my reply thereto.

I have, etc.,

A. M. BEAUPRE, Chargé d'Affaires ad, etc.

[Inclosure 1.]

Mr. Ugarte to Mr. Beaupre.



Guatemala, March 15, 1899.

SIR: The President of Honduras addressed me yesterday a telegram which says:

Mr. ANGEL UGARTE, Guatemala:


According to your telegram of yesterday, I understand that the chargé d'affaires of the United States thinks that with the disposition taken by the American Government, and by the President of that Republic, we need not fear any menace of the filibusters, and recommending you to let him know anything that we may know, that he may proceed accordingly, I beg you to express to that high functionary our gratefulness for the interest he has taken in favor of the peace of Honduras.

Yours, very truly,


Fulfilling the pleasing trust conferred to me, to make you know our grateful sentiments, I have the honor, etc.,

[Inclosure 2.]


Mr. Beaupre to Mr. Ugarte.

Guatemala, March 20, 1899.

SIR: I have the honor to acknowledge the receipt of your very kind note of the 15th instant, in which you inform me of the contents of a telegram received by you

from his excellency the President of Honduras, who has the goodness to say therein that he is gratified at the attitude of this legation toward the recent filibustering expedition.

I beg that you will say to his excellency the President that nothing could give me greater personal satisfaction than to know that my actions have not only tended to the preservation of peace in Honduras, but to preserve the cordial and friendly relations existing between our respective Governments.

Thanking you very much for the pleasant words which you have seen fit to add in your own behalf, I avail myself, etc.,

A. M. BEAUPRE, Chargé d'Affaires ad interim.


No. 159.]

Mr. Beaupre to Mr. Hay.

Guatemala, March 22, 1899.

SIR: I have the honor to confirm my cipher telegram of the 17th instant, on the subject of an invitation extended me to act as arbitrator of a question between Honduras and Great Britain, and to acknowledge receipt of a cipher telegram in reply, dated the 18th instant. I append to this dispatch translations of both telegrams.

Under your authority I have accepted the post and shall conform strictly to the instructions outlined in your telegram.

The parties in interest wish you to know, however, that it was their. desire to submit the question to me as the representative of the United States, but as the time during which I should continue to act as chargé d'affaires ad interim was necessarily very limited, and it would be a saving of time to have me conclude the case after I had taken it up, it was asked that I be permitted to continue as arbitrator after I had ceased to be chargé. Still, they now accept the conditions prescribed by your telegram, only asking that the submission should contain the words:

"Arthur M. Beaupre, who is now chargé d'affaires ad interim of the United States," to which I sign my individual name, and render my decision over my personal signature.

I have to inform you that the case involves but a small amount of money and no complications can possibly arise from it. In July, 1892, the British schooner Lottie May put into Ruatan, a port in the island of Ruatan, off the coast of Honduras, unloaded a cargo of provisions and asked for a clearance for Great Caiman, from whence she had come. Clearance was refused, because of revolutionary troubles prevailing on some part of the Honduran coast, and subsequently the captain of the schooner was arrested, because, as alleged and denied, he used insulting and vile language to the authorities. He was kept in jail, to the injury of his health, as alleged, for six days, and the vessel detained during that time, at the end of which time he was permitted to go. The British Government claims damages to the amount of £300 for the captain and £200 for the vessel. The Honduranian Government admits that it should pay the damages for the vessel, but disputes the amount, and claims that it is not liable for damages on account of imprisoning the captain.

I have, etc.,

A. M. BEAUPRE, Chargé d'Affaires ad interim.

« PreviousContinue »