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office, I thought proper to initiate an inquiry at the ministry of finance, whence an instruction went the same hour to said prefect and to the custom-house for a report. To-day I have been advised at the ministry that the reports have been made and deny the imposition of the alleged charges; that if they be shown in any case to have been exacted, the sum will be reimbursed; and that an executive decree inhibiting such a levy upon vessels seeking Argentine ports in distress is about to be issued. I hasten to anticipate by outward-bound steamer the promulgation of the decree, by reason of the delay to which the inquiry has been subjected, and will transmit it in copy as early as possible. I have, etc.,
JOHN R. G. PITKIN.
Mr. Pitkin to Mr. Blaine.
LEGATION OF THE UNITED STATES,
Buenos Ayres, June 17, 1891. (Received July 29.) Sir: In dispatches Nos. 94 and 102, under the respective dates of February 5 and 26, 1891, I had the honor to report my action in respect of the two United States insurance companies, resident here by branches and discriminated against in recent legislation; and in the latter number to state a result accomplished in the dismissal of two of the taxes levied upon such foreign enterprises.
Herewith is submitted a copy, in translation, of a decree in favor of the United States Equitable Insurance Company and a copy of a personal communication which its local director general has thought proper to send to the legation. It should be added that the local manager of the New York Life Insurance Company attached himself to a native insurance company soon after the adverse enactments reported received executive sanction, and that the former company does not thus far appear to have shared in the Equitable's effort to maintain a foothold here. All other foreign insurance enterprises have retired from the field, and the Equitable is assured not only less competition, but, as related to native companies, a firmer status. In fact, the whole issue inures to the signal advantage of that company, which has recently bought a costly corner on a leading thoroughfare of this capital in forecast of a large business. I have, etc.,
JOIN R. G. PITKIN.
(Inclosure 1 in No. 137.-Translation.)
BUENOS AYRES, May 2, 1891. Upon examination of the preceding opinions of the attorney-general of the nation, and considering that the statements made by the Equitable Life Assurance Society are in conformity with the legal prescriptions, it is
Resolved, The Equitable Life Assurance Society may continue its operations on the conditions of the national companies, upon proofs of its having radicated in the country at least 50 per cent of its paid-up capital and appointed a directory with residence in the Republic. Give the legalized copies which may be solicited. Publish and file.
VICENTE F. LOPEZ.
(Inclosure 2 in No. 137.)
Mr. Watson to Mr. Pitkin.
BUENOS AYRES, June 6, 1891. MY DEAR JUDGE PITKIN: In sending you a copy of the decree issued in favor of our society, I wish to express my gratitude to you for the very able exposition which you made to the Argentine Government in our behalf, and to say that in my opinion it has had its effect in removing to a great extent the prejudice which appeared to exist against the American life-insurance companies, and thus aided in securing the decree in our favor. With assurances, etc.,
T. T. WATSON.
Mr. Pitkin to Mr. Blaine.
LEGATION OF THE UNITED STATES,
Buenos Ayres, July 7, 1891. (Received August 19.) SIR: Referring to dispatch No. 129, I have the honor to transmit a translation of a communication from the foreign office, embodying a note thereto from the ministry of the hacienda, in relation to the question of port charges levied upon vessels entering this port in distress, and to invite attention to a suggestion in said dispatch No. 129, and renewed in said note, that specific cases of undue charges be exhibited in order to assist the authorities here to the end of discovery and redress.
I have to add that the Government has reconsidered the policy of issuing an executive decree inhibiting such charges, but that personal interviews at the hacienda department satisfy me of an earnest official purpose to forbid further inequitable exactions in the case of distressed vessels. I have, etc.,
JOHN R. G. PITKIN.
(Inclosure in No. 141— Translation.]
The minister of foreign affairs to Mr. Pitkin.
Ministry of Foreign Affairs. The minister of foreign affairs has the honor of saluting Mr. R. G. Pitkin, envoy extraordinary and minister plenipotentiary of the United States, and to transmit to him with reference to former communications of his excellency the following documents which the ininister of hacienda has just sent to him. They say the following:
“MINISTRY OF HACIENDA,
“ Buenos Ayres, June 25, 1891. “Mr. MINISTER: I have the honor to address myself to you, inclosing a copy of the information furnished by the collector of customs of the capital concerning the supposed imposition of taxes upon vessels of forced entry which impels the request of the minister of the United States communicated by your excellency to this ministry by note of the 4th of last May.
“ The information of the management is conclusive in that no such taxes have been imposed except in the case of ships loading or unloading in the ordinary conditions. In addition to this, the ordinances of the custom-house in force have foreseen the case and prescribed especially that ships of forced entry should be exempt from all port charges, except in case they discharge with this market as their destination, in which case the special nature of the situation ceases and they are left equipped for ordinary navigation. Meanwhile, as the note of the minister of the United States indicates that it has been alleged that port charges have beon imposed upon vessels of forced entry, and this ministry is interested in ventilating every charge of an abnse, I ask your excellency to indicate to the said minister that I should be pleased to have him indicate the precise case or cases in which such charges have been imposed and collected, in order to institute a fit inquiry. "I saluto your excellency, etc.,
“ VICENTE F. LOPEZ."
“Mr. COLLECTOR: Ships anchoring in the roads can romain three days without being subject to any charge (article 53) and are likewise exempt from the payment of port and dock charges, according to article 4 of the same law, when they enter the Riachuelo by reason of bad weather, and remain in the bay during the course of the tempest. But if the minister did not refer to any of these cases, as it is to be supposed, there is then a decree of the 14th of October, 1890, by which it is established that vessels entering merchandise through the custom-nonse of the capital, whether they enter the docks, the Riachuelo, or drop anchor
because of the deep water in the outside anchorings of the river, shall pay a daily tax of 2 cents in form prescribed by the decree of the 24th of May of the current year. In addition to this stipulation, the collector of customs, under whose control the collection of these taxes is placed, has exacted the payment of the said charge as well from ships that effect an entrance to discharge on the docks as from those remaining outside and using lighters. Upon these last, which are the fewest, because there can only be counted among them those of heavy draft and those placed in quarantine, there has not been imposed in the light of a port charge a greater tax than the 2 cents stipulated in in that decree, and only while in active operation; that is, that it shall not be collected except for the days when the ship is discharging or receiving a cargo. This is as much as I think should be explained in this regard. “ June 17, 1891.
Mr. Grant to Mr. Blaine.
LEGATION OF THE UNITED STATES, Vienna, December 21, 1890. (Received January 16, 1891.) SIR: I have the honor to place before you, at the request of Mr. Rudolph Nejedly, his application for a passport. I have declined to issue a passport to Mr. Nejedly until I receive instruction from you upon the subject, for the reason that it does not appear certain that he is entitled to the protection of the Government of the United States of America as a citizen of that country.
Mr. Nejedly was born in New York city on the 18th day of July, 1854; his father became a naturalized citizen of the United States on the 10th day of October, 1860, but in the following year abandoned his adopted home, when our country most needed the support of its citizens, and returned to Europe with his family, where he has resided ever since, and where, as far I can learn, he has done nothing to retain his American citizenship. It is true that the present applicant, Rudolph Nejedly, obtained a passport from Mr. Jay, United States minister to Austria in 1872, when he, Mr. Nejedly, was about 18 years old and likely to be conscripted in the imperial army here. Since then the applicant has done nothing that would indicate a desire on his part to maintain his American citizenship. He is employed in the Savings Bank of the City of Vienna, and I gather from his own statements that he has no intention of ever returning to the United States to reside there.
In the case of all applications for passports similar to the above, I have held and will continue to hold to the opinion, unless instructed to change my course by the proper authorities
First. That a child born in the United States of foreign parents is not necessarily a citizen of the United States, but he may become a citizen of that country if at the age of 21 he will go before one of the courts having jurisdiction in the matter and take the oath of allegiance to the Constitution of the United States.
Second. That the allegiance of the child follows that of his parents, and in case of the parents having become naturalized citizens of the United States, and having afterwards forfeited that citizenship by leaving their adopted country, then the child would lose with his parents his rights of protection from that country; but the child of the same parents may again revive his rights of protection as a citizen of the United States if at the age of 21 years he appears before a United States consul and takes the oath of allegiance to the United States and reënters upon the duties of a citizen of that country.
Although, as before stated, the present applicant for a passport, Mr. Nejedly, did take the oath of allegiance to the United States when he was about 18 years old, he had not then arrived at the age of maturity according to law, and, inasmuch as he has since then taken no action towards renewing his claims to American citizenship, and does not appear to have the least intention of returning to the United States in the future, I have declined to issue to him the desired passport unless instructed to do so.
It may be proper for me to add here, Mr. Secretary, that I have obtained, indirectly, information to the effect that the several European governments which demand universal military duty from their male subjects have recently agreed that each country would furnish to the others a list of the names of the subjects of their several governments who are residing within its own boundaries at the time the census is taken. The census of Austria-Hungary is now being taken, for which reason there is a great pressure upon this legation coming from persons applying for passports.
Having placed before you, at his own request, Mr. Rudolph Nejedly's application for a passport, I have, etc.,
F. D. GRANT.
Mr. Blaine to Mr. Grant.
DEPARTMENT OF STATE,
Washington, February 26, 1891. SIR: I have received your dispatch No. 125, of the 21st ultimo, in relation to the application of Mr. Rudolph Nejedly for a passport as a citizen of the United States.
The facts of the case appear as follows: The applicant was born in New York July 18, 1854, of a father whose national origin is not stated, but who, having emigrated to the United States in 1852, was naturalized October 10, 1860. The father returned to Europe in 1861, and has since resided there, doing, as far as you can learn, nothing to retain his American citizenship. It is to be inferred that Rudolph Nejedly, being then 6 years old, was taken to Europe with his father, and he declares that he has since 1861 resided in Vienna. When 18 years old, in 1872— and liable to conscription--a passport was granted to him by your predecessor, Mr. Jay. Since then the applicant has done nothing until now that would indicate a desire on his part to maintain his American citizenship. He is employed in the Savings Bank of Vienna, and you gather from his statements that he has no intention of ever returning to this country to reside. His sworn declaration is that he intends to return to the United States “when circumstances will permit.”
This declaration, when considered in connection with the circumstances detailed in your dispatch, is far from constituting an expression of a purpose ever to return to the United States, and is altogether unsatisfactory.
Moreover, as Mr. Nejedly was born in the United States of a foreign father, it is probable that the most that could under any circumstances be claimed for himn is that he was born with a double allegiance. But double allegiance does not always continue when the person so endowed reaches his majority; he must make an election by taking up his residence and performing the duties of citizenship in the one country or the other. This requirement would apply with peculiar force to Mr. Nejedly, who is living in Austria, the country of which at the time of his birth his father is supposed to have been a subject.