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United States Department of State / Papers relating to the foreign relations of the United States, 1921

Liberia,   pp. 363-393 PDF (11.5 MB)

Page 364

and which investigation was initiated after the Liberian Commission had left
Monrovia, had greatly complicated the question which brought President King
to the United States; that the Treasury Department did not feel at this time
justified in consummating the loan, even should a loan agreement plan be
reached with the Commission. I further said that the State Department was
actively engaged in the matter in an endeavor to reach a means of finding
a method whereby it would be justified in beginning discussion with the Liberian
Commission, but that it might be necessary to await the opening of Congress
for submitting the question for the consideration of the Legi~lature. I also
pointed out the disinterested desire of the American Government, as the nearest
friend of Liberia, to be of every assistance to that country, because of
our friendship for Liberia since its foundation and the desire to see the
colored people succeed in the experiment which they had undertaken nearly
a century ago. I expressed my personal regret that it had not been possible
to enter immediately upon the arrival of the Commission into a discussion
of the loan agreement and assured him that I was very much in hopes that
the matter could be speedily adjusted as soon as the situation permitted
of an exchange of views. President King said that~ he understood the situation
and that while he too regretted it he was not uiunindful of the difficulties
which were presented, but that he was very much in hopes that it would be
possible for the Commission and representatives of this' Government to begin
preliminary conversations with a view, if possible, of reaching a tentative
agreement to be consummated without delay upon the loan being made available.
He also asked to know whether the American Government would give its approval
to Liberia making a loan with private banking and commercial interests in
case the Government did not make the loan. To the first point I told him
that it was a matter which would have to be given further consideration,
and that his suggestion would have my earnest consideration, and that with
regard to the second point it seemed unnecessary to cross that bridge until
it had been reached, but that of course a private loan would depend for approval
by the American Government on the persons who offered to advance Liberia
any money.
~He left with me a memorandum on various questions of detail concerning Liberia.
I talked with him regarding the climate of Liberia and had him describe to
me at length the visit to Monrovia during the war of the German submarine;
and assured him on parting that I wished him to consider that he could come
to me at any time to discuss matters informally and unofficially which interested
him and Liberia.
R[oBm~T] W[ooDs] B[iissj

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