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United States Department of State / Index to the executive documents of the House of Representatives for the second session of the forty-fifth Congress, 1879-'80
(1879-1880)

Turkish Empire,   pp. 976-1037 PDF (27.9 MB)


Page 992


992                         FOREIGN    RELATIONS.
ing recollection of my visit, and I shall deeni myself fortunate if I am
able to show my
gratitude in furthering, in however slight a degree, the interests of this
noble and
ancient' city."
  The speech was received with loud and enthusiastic cheers, which were prolonged
and taken up by the crowd outside as soon as the motive was understood. The
whole
town was ablaze with illuminations, and the population felt that they were
welcoming
the representative of the one power that disinterestedly seeks to promote
the welfare
indiscriminately of all the races and creeds that were represented in that
joyful and
enthusiastic throng. Saturday was spent in leave-taking, and on Sunday morning
the illustrious party took their departure, leaving upon the popular mind
a most pleas-
ant, and, let it be hoped, not unprofitable, impression.
                               [Inclosure 2 in No. 348.1
                             Mr. Efdgar to Mr. Heap.
                                               UNITED STATES CONSULATE,
                                                      Beirht, September 30,
1879.
  SIR:
  I have had no reason to suspect that the visit of Sir A. H. Layard to Syria
had any
other object than relaxation, &c. The English residents in Beirfit, particularly
the
English consul-general, affirm that his visit is one of pleasure only. He
arrived at
Beirfit from Jerusalem Tuesday, September 23, and was officially recei.ved
and escorted
to a residence specially prepared for him by the British consul-general,
and representa-
tives of the governors-general of Syria and the Lebanon, the governor zof
Beirfit, and
the municipality. The British consul-general on Monday, September 22, in
an official
circular informed his colleagues of the expected arrival, and on Tuesday
in another
circular indicated the hour at which the ambassador would be pleased to receive
those
consuls who would do him the honor to call upon him. In my interview with
him ihe
spoke very pleasantly of those Americans with whom he became acquainted when
here in 1839, mentioning all by name, and said that he had never in his life
met with
more energetic, disinterested, and self-sacrificing men. After the reception
of the con-
sils he received the resident British merchants, headed by James Black, whom
he
had known in 1839.
  The municipality provided an extensive dinner for the ambassador and his
suite
Tuesday evening, to which no foreigners except the British consul-general
and the vice-
consul and their wi-ves were invited. The ambassador and suite left at four
o'clock
Wednesday morning for Damascus. He was met half way by an escort sent from
Damascus. He displayed the English flag while traveling. He remainedthree
days
in Damascus, went to Baalbec, and will arrive in Aleih, a village in the
Lebanon, the
summer residence of 4he British consul-general and many Europeans and Americans,
to-day at 4 p. m. -He will to-morrow visit the governor-generalof the Lebanon
at Beit-
ed-din, returning to Beriftt the last -of -this week. From Berifit he will
go to Tripoli,
thence to Constantinople. His visit has caused mmuch excitement and a great
deal of
absurd speculation about British occupation, interference, sulpervision of
reforms, &c.
In .my interview with him he spoke very highly of our minister, and inquired
of me
about his visit to the Black Sea. *   S
      I am, &c.,                                    JOHN T. EDGAR, Consul.
                               [Inclosure 3 in No. 348.]
                            Mr. Willson to Mr. Heap.
                                               UNITED STATES CONSULATE,
                                             Jerusalem, Palestine, October
1, 1879.
  SIn :     "      *          S         S          *          *    
     *
  The ambassador returned the official call of the consul, dined with the
governor,
Raouf Pacha, and heard the complaints and statements of grievance of various
par-
ties-,patriarchs, bishops, superiors of convents--and the representation
of the late
Bishop Gobat, and all of them, so far as I can learn, were gratified with
the results of
their visits ; bnt outsidle of Turkish official circles nothing is known
definitely of :the
special object of his visit.
  That it was a pleasure trip for relaxation is an idea :not to be entertained
for a mo-
ment. He appeared to be in perfect health, and he worked very hard, journeying
rap-
idly and dispatching business of ceremony promptly. My own impression is
that the
visit had some reference to proposed reforms--some reference, perhaps, to
English in-
fluence in Syria and Palestine, of which the French and Russian consuls are
jealous,
not to say also the German consul.


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