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able, consequently, upon the agreement signed by the delegates of twenty-two nations at the geographical congress at Paris in 1875, to enter into relations with several committees already established abroad.
The time has arrived for us to ask you that you will indicate precisely what you are able to place at our disposal from among the publications issued by your society since its foundation, be it from the stock on hand or from future continuations of series, informing us of the number of copies still at your disposal, as also their price.
It is understood that the publications now issuing as well as the following numbers are to be furnished at the subscription price. In regard to those of previous years we trust that, in consideration of the fact that it would increase the number of subscribers for your publications, you will settle upon a moderate price, so that we may be able to accept of it.
At some future time when we shall have received from foreign countries catalogues of works we may procure from them we shall have the bonor of communicating it to you so that you may indicate which of the works would be desirable for you. In the majority of case we shall make return in kind of what you have furnished us; but the amount for those you will have asked of us and we furnished will be deducted and your account will be settled every year.
What we expect of your courtesy at present is the indication of the material for exchange which we may procure from your society. Accept, &c., &c.
President. CHAS. RUELENS,
DEPARTMENT OF STATE,
Washington, March 23, 1877. SIR: I inclose herewith, for your information, a copy of a dispatch of the 7th instant, No. 138, from Mr. Pierrepont, the minister for the United States at London, relating to the subject of international exchange of public documents. I am, sir, your obedient servant,
F. W. SEWARD,
Assistant Secretary. Prof. JOSEPH HENRY,
Washington, D. C., &c., &c., &c.
LEGATION OF THE UNITED STATES,
London, March 7, 1877. Sir: I received sometime since from Professor Henry, of the Smithsonian Institution, a letter in relation to the international exchange of documents between the United States and Great Britain, and inclosing a circular upon the subject.
I was not able conveniently to bring the matter to the attention of Lord Derby until the 20th of October last, when I sent to him a copy of Dr. Henry's letter and circular, and requested him to refer the subject to the proper authorities.
He acknowledged the receipt of my communication on the 31st of October, but it was not until the 1st instant that I received from his lordship a definite answer to Dr.
Henry's proposal, a copy of which answer I herewith inclose, and ask that you will do me the favor to communicate it to Dr. Henry. I have the honor to be, with great respect, your obedient servant,
EDWARDS PIERREPONT. Hon. HAMILTON FISH,
Secretary of State, fc., fc., fc., Washington, D.C.
Lord Derby to Mr. Pierrepont.
FOREIGN OFFICE, March 1, 1877. Sir: With reference to my letter of 31st of October last, I have the honor to acquaint you that the proposal of the Smithsonian Institution for an interchange of documents between the United States and this country has been considered by the lords of Her Majesty's treasury, and that they have informed me that they do not think it expedient to agree to an unlimited and indiscriininate exchange of papers, the greater part of which wonld be only of local and temporary interest.
Arrangements have been made for the purchase for Her Majesty's government of the Congressional documents issued from year to year, which appear to include all that is required for the use of this department.
I have accordingly the honor to request that you will be so good as to inform Professor Henry that Her Majesty is grateful for the offer made by the Smithsonian Iostitution, but are not prepared to euter into an arrangement for the unlimited interchange of documents suggested in his letter to you of the 21st of July last.
I have the honor to be, with the highest consideration, sir, your most obedient, humble servant,
DERBY. Hon. EDWARDS PIERREPONT, &c., 8-c., &c.
JUNE 3, 1878. SIR: I have the honor to acknowledge the receipt of your letter of May 15 inclosing a communication from W. E. Johnston, M. D., in reference to the subject of international exchanges between the United States and France.
In reply I beg to inform you that this institution has been for a num. ber of years charged by Congress with the duties of exchanging its official publications and those of the various departments of the United States Government for similar publications of foreign governments, France among the number.
This institution has also for a still longer period maintained a much more comprehensive and extended system of communication between learned societies and specialists of the New World and those of the Old, receiving serial and other publications from South and Central America, the West Indies, and the British provinces of North America, as well as those of the United States, and transmitting them through its agents abroad. These, in turn, receiving any parcels from the countries represented by them for transmission to any portion of America likewise through the Smithsonian Institution.
An especial element in the Smithsonian system of international es: changes consists in the employment of a number of agents in different portions of Europe, a list of whom is herewith inclosed. It will be seen that the agent of France is Mr. Gustav Bossange, well-known bookseller, of Paris.
It will be entirely agreeable to the Smithsonian Institution to adopt any plan of communication between the United States and France that may be considered an improvement upon the present, although it could
not now undertake to assume any responsibility beyond that of taking charge of official publications interchanged between the two governments, and of any parcels addressed to scientific individuals and institutions.
If the Department of State will instruct the American minister at Paris to serve as agent in these transactions it will be probably an improvement upon the present system which we shall be happy to see carried into effect. I am, very respectfully and truly, your obedient servant,
SPENCER F. BAIRD,
Secretary Smithsonian Institution. . Hon. WM. M. EVARTS,
Secretary of State.
DEPARTMENT OF STATE,
Washington, August 28, 1878. SIB: Referring to your letter of the 3d of June last to this Department in relation to the international exchange of works of science, a copy of which was transmitted to our minister at Paris, and by him communicated to Dr. Johnston, the American delegate to the congress for promoting the organization of a more extensive system of such exchanges, I have the honor to inclose herewith, for your consideration, a partial report just received by this Department from Dr. Johnston as to the proceedings of the congress in relation to the subject-matter of this correspondence. I am, sir, your obedient servant,
F. W. SEWARD,
. Acting Secretary. SPENCER F. BAIRD, Esq.,
Secretary of the Smithsonian Institution, Washington, D. C.
Paris, August 5, 1878. Sir: Iu reply to your excellency's letter of June 10, addressed to the American min. ister at Paris, and that of Mr. Baird, Secretary of the Smithsonian Institution, of June 3, accompanying, both relating to the proposed official organization of a system of international exchanges of works of science, I have the honor, at the request of Mr. Hitt, chargé d'affaires, to again address you on the subject, and to lay before you some other considerations in regard to this scheme.
All the governments which are represented by diplomatic agents at Paris, with the exception of England and Germany, which still hold out in order to first see the working of the scheme, have given in their adhesion and agreed to the creation, within the bureans of their respective foreign secretaries, of an agency, with a special employé, charged with the duty of international exchanges of works of science.
It is hoped that an arrangement may be made in regard to the transportation of these exchanges which will rednce the expenses to a mere trifle.
Will the Smithsonidu Institution, which is already organized for this kind of work, and which has been niaking exchanges with a certain number of foreign governments for a good many years, assume to do this work, on the more enlarged and more official scale which is now proposed, and enter, as the occasion presents, into direct communication with the different foreign bureaus; or will it demand to do this work through the foreign legations of the United States ; or, finally, will it prefer, if the State Department will do this work, to abandon it to the State Department entirely!
The foreign bureaus would much prefer, for the sake of simplicity and uniformity in the service, that the work should be done in the United States exactly as it is done here—that is to say, by a special bureau established within the State Department. The American legation at Paris would also prefer that the exchange should be made by direct communication through the bureau, rather than through its agency, and it
H. Ex. 172_2
is probable that the other European legations, where exchanges are to be made, would also prefer the direct communication.
Nevertheless, as regards the Smithsonian Institution, the relations of this lostitution to the goverument, and its superior facilities for this kind of work, are so well known, that in the various nieetings of the congress no objection was ever raised to its assim. ilation with the proposed official bureaus of the different governments.
As I bave alreadly had the bouor of informing your excellency, the last meeting of the congress was composed, exclusively, with the exception of myself, of official personages, some thirty in mumber, mostly members of the diplomatic corps; and I de sire to know of your excellency whether it would not be more appropriate for one of the members of the American legation to assume hereafter the duty of representing the United States in this congress. In view of the fact, however, that there may not be more than one or two more meetings of the congress, I bave been requested by the legation to continue to fill the duty of the delegate to the end. I have the honor to be, very respectfully, your obedient servant,
W. E. JOHNSTON, M. D. His Excellency Wm. M. EVARTS,
Secretary of State.
SEPTEMBER 17, 1878. SIR: I have the honor to acknowledge the receipt of a communication from the State Department, dated August 28, inclosing a letter from Dr. W. E. Johnston, of the 5th of August, in reference to the participation of the Smithsonian Institution in the system of international exchanges.
In reply to the suggestions of the letter referred to, I beg leave to say that the Smithsonian Institution has been engaged for nearly thirty years in the development of its present system if international exchanges, prosecuted almost entirely at the expense of the Smithsonian fund; that it has thoroughly met the needs and wishes of thie scientific men of both countries, and that unless there is some assurance that the work can be carried on with equal efffciency under some new arrangement it would be considered inexpedient by the Board of Regents to make any change. If, however, the Government of the United States will undertake the entire expense of the work and its management on a scale that will meet all the requirements, it is very probable tbat the assent of the Board of Regents can be had to the proposition to transfer it to a new organization, and thus be enabled to devote funds thus released in some other direction.
This, of course, according to the letter of Dr. Johnston, would involve the assumption of the labor at least by the State Department, and the securing of the necessary appropriations from Congress for the purpose.
If I am informed by the State Department of its readiness to undertake the expense and responsibility attendant upon the assumption of the system of international exchanges in question, I will take pleasure in referring the matter to the Board of Regents for its action. Very respectfully, your obedient servant,
SPENCER F. BAIRD,
Secretary Smithsonian Institution. Hon. Wm. M. EVARTS,
Secretary of State.
DEPARTMENT OF STATE,
Washington, September 26, 1878. SJR: I have received and carefully considered your letter of the 17th instant, in reply to the letter of this Department of August 28th ultimo,
in relation to the international system of exchanges of scientific publi. cations proposed by a conference at Paris, in which the United States is represented by Dr. W. E. Johnston.
I quite agree with the opinion expressed through you by the Board : of Regents, that it is inexpedient to make any present change in the admirable and efficient system of literary exchanges with foreign countries inaugurated by the Smithsonian Institntion nearly thirty years ago, and since then developed to its present proportions:
The letter of Dr. Johnston, of August 5, of which a copy was sent to you with the Department's letter of 28th ultimo, states that the relations of the Smithsonian Institution to this government, and its superior facilities for conducting exchanges of the kind proposed, are so well known, that, in the various meetings of the congress, 10 objection has been raised to its assimilation with the proposed official bureans of the different governments. It is believed that there is no obstacle to effecting such an assimilation substantially on the basis of the suggestions contained in your letter of June 3, 1878.
The United States minister at Paris has therefore been directed to, convey, through Dr. Johuston, to the international conference the opinion of this government, that, so far as its special domestic bureau of exchange is concerned, it is preferable to leave the work with the Smith sonian Institution rather than to replace it by the organization of a new bureau ad hoc in the Department of State, but that no objection is seen to entering into a common arrangement of international exchange, provided that the operations of the Institution be assimilate with those of the foreigu bureau so as to enable it to act as though it were, for the special purpose in view, a bureau of the foreign department of this government.
As you make no categorical answer to the inquiry contained in Dr. Jolinstou's letter of the 5th ultimo, as to whether the Smithsonian Institution will consent to assume to do this work on the more enlarged and more official scale which is now proposed, and enter, as the occasion presents, into direct conmunication with the different foreign bureaus, or will it demand to do this work through the foreign legations of the United States," it is inferred that any practical arrangement sanctionech by the conference will meet the approval of the Board of Regents. Mr. Noyes will, therefore, be instructed to advise Dr. Johnston in that sense, and leave the details of assimilation to the deliberation of the conference, inclining, however, if there be no impediment to such a course, to favor the designation of the legations of the United States in : foreign countries as the channels of communication between the several's foreign bureaus and the Institution, as apparently contemplated in your letter of the 3d of June last. Any special consideration which you may be disposed to advance on this point, will, nevertheless, receive prompt: attention. I am, şir, your obedient servant,
WM. M. EVARTS." Prof. SPENCER F. BAIRD,
Secretary of the Smithsonian Institution.
DEPARTMENT OF STATE,
Washington, October 30, 1878. SIR: I transmit to you here with a copy of a 'note received from the minister of Portugal in this country, giving information of the action of