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United States Department of State / The executive documents of the House of Representatives for the first session of the fiftieth Congress. 1887-'88

Russia,   pp. 939-971 PDF (13.9 MB)

Page 939

                              No. 575.
                        Mr. Bayard to Mr. Taft.
No. 13.]                            DEPARTMENT OF STATVR,
                                         Washington, March 25, 1885.
  SIu: I inclose a copy of a dispatch from Kanagawa, Japan, and of
the papers accompanying the same, relating to the unwarranted seizure
of the schobner Eliza, the property of a highly respected American cit-
izen doing business at Yokohama, Japan, by the Russian cruiser Eaz-
bornyk, on the Anadyr River, on the 21st July last, and its subsequent
confisctin" by the captain of the cruiser, without any court of inquiry.
  According to the statement of the owner, the vessel was on a trading
voyage and catching walrus. No act obnoxious to Russian law seems
to have been committed in the premises, neither was any article carried
by the vessel which could have warranted the seizure and confiscation
referred to.
  The papers have been carefully etamined by the law officer of the
Department, and in pursuance of his advice I have to ask that you
will present the claim of Mr. F. C. Spooner, the owner of the Eliza, for
the favorable consideration of His Majesty~s Government,
   "The pecuniary loss to me," says Mr. Spooner, in his sworn state-
ment, "of the vessel and cargo would amount' to $10,000, and for this
sum, together with all other expenses that may appear to have been
incurred through this seizure and confiscation I wish to make claim on
the Russian Government."
       I am, etc.,                                    T. F. BAYARD.
                            [Inclosure 1 in No. 13.]
                            Mr. Bice to Mr. Davis.
    879.]            Kanagawa, Japan, February 9, 1885. (,Received March
    SIR: Herewith I have the honor to hand you a communication from Mr. Francis
 Spooner, a highly respectable American merchant, for many years resident
and doing
 business at Yokohama, Japan, concerning the seizure by the Russian authorities
 the schooner Eliza, the property of the said Spooner, on the 26th of July,
1881. I
 also inclose the depositions of Austin Weston, master, and Albert Wixon,
mate, of
 said vessel, giving the details of'the schooner's cruise and her seizure.
   From these papers it would appear that the schooner was engaged in no
 commerce and Was violating no law or obligation, and that the said seizure
was an
 act of piracy.
   I also inclose certified copies of the bill of sale of said schooner to
Mr. Spooner,
 certificate of American ownership, certificate of change of name from Jfwa
 beth to Eliza, and copy of last clearance of said schooner from this port.
   I commend to favorable consideration the claim of the owner for the damages
 assessed by him.
      I[ have, ete.,
                                                   GEORGE E. RICE,
                                                      Vice- Consul- General.

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