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whenever it is possible some arrangement should be devised whereby goods so bought and shipped to another port can be accompanied by a certificate showing that they had paid duty on entry, in which case duty will not be charged at a second port; but if not so identified, they must pay foreign import duty as an original entry.

By treaty regulation “Native produce carried coastwise pays full export duty at the port of shipment, and at the port of entry coasttrade duty, the amount of which is declared to be half import duty."

The increase to a “5 per cent effective on maritime imports” is not applied to coastwise trade, except in cases where it is not clearly shown that foreign goods so shipped have already paid import duty.

As to original imports through the mails," no privilege of exemption of duty has been granted by China to any foreign post-office, but most of them exercise it in spite of her helpless protests. The practice of the Imperial Chinese post-office has been, and still is, to require a declaration of the contents of a parcel, and if it contains only a single piece or pair of anything, or so small a quantity as to evidence a nonintention of importation for sale, it is usually exempted from import duty as a courtesy, but not as a right. A very large discretion upon these matters is always left with the commissioners of customs at the several ports.

Following the spirit of your instructions, as I understand them, I shall take no further action upon either of the questions until I hear from you again. I have, etc.,





Mr. Conger to Mr. Hay. No. 950.]


Pekin, March 19, 1902. Sır: I have the honor to inclose herewith copies of correspondence with Consul Wilcox, of Hankow, in regard to the applications of Messrs. Ruhl and Snyder, American missionaries, for permission to reside and travel in Thibet.

The correspondence is self-explanatory. I may possibly be exercising an excess of caution in declining to urge their request upon the Chinese Government; but the present time does not seem to me to be opportune, and I am unwilling that our people shall take any undue risks by traveling in Thibet. I have, etc.,


[Inclosure 1.)

Mr. Wilcox to Mr. Conger.


Hankow, March 5, 1902. Sir: I had the honor to forward applications for passports for Messrs. Ruhl and Snyder to return to their mission in eastern Thibet. * I received their passports Nos. 367 and 365, but while they give them permission to travel in Hupeh, Szechuen, and Kansuh, they do not perinit them to travel in Thibet.

They desire to leave here by April 5. I would therefore inquire if a special permit can not be granted to them (separately) to return to their mission in Thibet? Awaiting your early reply, I have, etc.,

L. S. Wilcox, Consul.

[Inclosure 2.]

Mr. Conger to Mr. Wilcox.


Peking, March 17, 1902. Sır: Referring to your dispatch dated the 5th instant, in regard to passports of Messrs. Ruhl and Snyder, requesting permission to return to their mission in Thibet, I have to say that in returning these passports to the legation the Foreign office said:

“Is to the mention of Thibet in your note, the Western tribes are wild and fierce in character and constantly insult and annoy strangers and people from a distance, so that it will be difficult to satisfactorily arrange for safe protection. If we cause the people of various countries to run into danger and any remissness should occur it would be impossible to avoid injuries to good feeling. For several years our board has warned against this, of which there is record.”

The treaty right to travel in Thibet is doubtful. But in any event I do not believe it wise at the present time to urge the point or add to the difficulties of the Chinese Government in the protection of foreigners and the maintenance of order. As it is evidently reluctant to grant perinission lest some accident occur, I deem it best to respect its wishes. I am therefore constrained to advise Messrs. Ruhl and Snyder to postpone their contemplated journey to Thibet until a more favorable occasion. I am, etc.,


Mr. Hay to Mr. Conger.

No. 512.]


Washington, April 30, 1902. SIR: I have to acknowledge the receipt of your No. 950, of the 19th ultimo, reporting that the Chinese Government declines to issue passports for Thibet upon the applications of Messrs. Ruhl and Snyder, American missionaries.

Your action in declining to urge their request upon the Chinese Government is approved. I am, etc.,



Mr. Conger to Mr. Flay. No. 959.]


Peking, March 29, 1902. Sir: I note to-day, in the Washington Post of February 14, that Congress refuses to provide for any student interpreters for China. This is greatly to be regretted. The Chinese secretary or interpreter at this legation is an absolute necessity, and without whom the business of the legation must stop. The same is true of the more important consulates.

When Mr. Cheshire, who had acted as interpreter for about eighteen years, resigned there was only one man in China suitable for the place who could be obtained, Mr. E. T. Williams. If anything should happen to take him permanently from us there is not another suitable man anywhere who could be induced to take his place; and the United States Government, with the great and growing importance of its interests here, can not afford to take such a risk. No private concern of one-fiftieth the importance would take any such chances for even a moment.

Everyone of the other great powers here has two or more interpreters of long experience, and from three to twenty students being prepared at government expense for future work. We are thus placed at a very great disadvantage before the Chinese and among the other legations. It is largely through the interpreters that the legations are kept in touch with the Chinese or able to secure valuable current information. No one can become an efficient interpreter of both the written and spoken language in less than five to ten years, and no one who does not make a specialty of the mandarin language and of official Chinese life can ever fit himself for the work. The average missionary, although he may have been here twenty years, has pursued his studies along one single line, the foreigner engaged in business along another special route, so that neither is equipped for official or diplomatic work.

The objection made by Congress, that there was no assurance that the students would remain in the Government service after learning the Chinese language, could be easily overcome by requiring them to give a bond, as the English do, that they will remain in the service for a certain number of years.

It is possible that it was the intention, when a second secretary was provided for this legation, with a requirement that he should study Chinese, that he might finally become an interpreter, but the work of the legation has increased so rapidly since then that he can find little time to devote to study. At any rate, did he become ever so efficient, it could not be expected that he would, under any circumstances, resign his office, and, at the same post, accept an inferior one. I can not emphasize too strongly the absolute necessity of making provisions for supplying a vacancy which may, at any time, occur most disastrously in the most important place in the legation staff.

Would it not be possible for Congress to create the office of assistant interpreter, with a graduated salary, beginning with $1,000 per annum, with an annual increase of $250 until it reaches $2,500 per year? This, I think, would induce some bright young man to enter the service as a career. This is a most important matter, and I hope that Congress may be induced to make some such provision. I have, etc.,


Mr. Hay to Mr. Conger.

No. 494.]


Washington, March 29, 1902. Sir: I have to inform you that the diplomatic and consular appropriation act for the fiscal year ending June 30, 1903, approved March 22, 1902, contains the following provision:

For ten student interpreters at the legation to China, who shall be citizens of the United States and whose duty it shall be to study the Chinese language with a view to supplying interpreters to the legation and consulates in China, at $1,000 each, $10,000: Provideıl, That said student interpreters shall be chosen in such manner as will make the selections nonpartisan so far as may be consistent with aptness and fitness for the intended work: And prorided further, That upon receiving such appointment each student interpreter shall sign an agreement to continue in the service as interpreter to the legation and consulates in China so long as his said services may be required within a period of ten years. I am, etc.,


Mr. Conger to Mr. Hay.

No. 982.)


Peking, May 10, 1902. SIR: I am greatly pleased to learn from your No. 494 of March 29, that Congress has made provision for ten student interpreters at this legation. This is a very important enactment, and one which should prove in the near future of great value to diplomatic and consular work here.

A much stronger inducement for capable men would have been furnished if this could have been an assured route to entry into the consular service in China.

The law is not very specific as to requirements, duties, etc., but regulations by the Department or later legal enactments can supply wbat is lacking.

I inclose herewith copy of the regulations under which Great Britain appoints her student interpreters. It will be observed that the Government pays their passage to their posts; and I add that the necessary houses are furnished for them, and a Chinese teacher for each is paid by the Government at a cost of about $6 to $9 gold per month. The United States ought to do no less. It will be necessary for us to build a house for them.

The students during the first two years give their entire time to study, then their salaries are increased; and, continuing their studies, they are put to work as assistant interpreters or clerks at the legation or consulates, and later made vice-consuls or consuls, or Chinese secretaries.

The young men ought to be of sound health and constitution, of sturdy moral character and good habits, and at least with such educational equipment as is furnished by our ordinary high schools. They ought, during the first two years, to be put under the care and authority of the head of the mission, much as boys in our schools and colleges at home are under the control of superintendents and presidents. Should not more than five of them come out during the next year, some small Chinese houses on the tract marked “D” on the legation-quarter map could, with a moderate amount of repairs, be utilized for them. I have, etc.,



Student interpreters for China, Japan, and Siam. The following are the (British] regulations under which candidates will be appointed:

1. The office of student interpreter has been instituted to supply the consular service in China, Japan, and Siam with persons versed in the languages of those countries and otherwise competent to discharge consular duties.

2. Student interpreters are selected by open competition after examination by the civil service commissioners, who will give notice in the newspapers beforehand of such examination.

3. The student interpreters are to devote themselves in the first place to the study of the language of the country to which they are appointed, and in the next place they are to qualify themselves generally for the public service, but they must clearly understand that their retention and advancement will depend entirely on the ability which they may show after their arrival at their destination and on their general steadiness and good conduct.

4. The salary of the student interpreters is fixed at the rate of £200 a year, commencing ten days previously to the date of their departure from England. A passage to their post is provided for them at the public expense, but they are required to enter into a bond of £300 with a sufficient surety for the repayment of £150 in the event of resignation or discharge from the service within five years. The successful candidates are expected to proceed to their destination as soon after their appointment as they can make arrangements for doing so.

5. Candidates must be natural-born subjects of His Majesty. Persons not actually born within the United Kingdom, or born within the United Kingdom of parents not born therein, will only be allowed to compete by special permission of the secretary of state. Candidates must be unmarried and must not be under 18 or over 24 years of age at the date of examination, with an extension of five years in favor of persons who have served under the foreign office continuously from a time when they were within the above limits of age. Persons who may be serving, or who may have served, in the militia, the imperial yeomanry, the honorable artillery company, or the volunteers, may deduct from their

actual age any time spent on actual military service, such time being reckoned by the number of days for which they received army pay. Candidates must be of sound constitution, possessed of good sight, and physically qualified for service in tropical climates. They will be called upon to undergo a medical examination to test these points, which will take place after the result of the literary examination has been ascertained. All candidates who have not been vaccinated within the last seven years must undergo an operation before leaving England.

6. The examination will be in the following subjects, viz:

Obligatory.—Handwriting and orthography, arithmetic (including vulgar and decimal fractions); English composition.

Candidates failing in any of these subjects will be informed of their failure as soon as possible, and will not proceed further with the examination.

Optional.- Precis, geography, Euclid (Books I to IV), Latin, French, German; the elements of the criminal law; the principles of British mercantile and commercial law relating to (1) shipping, (2) negotiable instruments, bills of exchange, and prommissory notes; (3) contracts for the carriage of goods; (4) contracts for marine insurance, bottomry, and respondencia; (5) contracts with seamen; (6) the doctrines of stoppage ir transit and lien.

(A fee of £4 is required from each candidate attending the examination.) Foreign office, November, 1901.

Mr. Hay to Mr. Conger. No. 545.]


Washington, July 18, 1902. Sır: I have to acknowledge the receipt of your No. 982, of May 10 last, and to inclose herewith for your information printed copies of the rules which have been adopted governing the appointment, organization, etc., of the corps of student interpreters in China provided for by the diplomatic and consular act approved March 22, 1902 I am, etc.,

John Hay.

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