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purpose; and these laws, and the operation of the commissions thus authorized, have been approved by the Governments of Nicaragua and Costa Rica.

This action caused an uncertainty as to the final location of the route. This uncertainty, with other causes referred to in the last and former reports of the company (to which attention is called), has made it as yet impossible to resume the work of construction.

The company placed its surveys, maps, buildings, etc., at the disposal of these commissions, and the present commission is now making use of the company's buildings and facilities in Nicaragua.

At the close of the last annual report reference was made to an agreement for another canal concession that had been made by the Government of Nicaragua in violation of the rights and interests not only of this company, but of the United States and of Costa Rica.

On the 2d of December, 1898, this company protested to the honorable Secretary of State of the United States against this action of Nicaragua. A copy of the protest is hereto annexed, marked Exhibit A.

On the 8th of September, 1899, the company made a further protest to the honorable Secretary of State, containing a request for the assistance and intervention of the Government of the United States in the protection of the property and rights of the company, a copy of which is also hereto annexed, marked Exhibit B.

Attention is respectfully called to both of these protests.

In witness whereof the Maritime Canal Company of Nicaragua has caused its corporate seal to be hereunto affixed and these presents to be signed by its president and secretary this 4th day of December, A, D. 1899.

THE MARITIME CANAL COMPANY OF NICARAGUA, (SEAL.] HIRAM HITCHCOCK,

President. THOMAS B. ATKINS, Secretary. Hon. E. A. HITCIICOCK,

Secretary of the Interior.

STATE OF NEW YORK,

City and County of New York, 88: Hiram Hitchcock, being duly sworn, says that he is the president of the said The Maritime Canal Company of Nicaragua; that he has read the foregoing annual report and knows the contents thereof, and that the same is in all respects correct and true.

HIRAM HITCHCOCK. Sworn to before me this 4th day of December, 1899. (SEAL.]

FRANK MAHTAH.

STATE OF NEW YORK,

City and County of New York, ss: Thomas B. Atkins, being duly sworn, says that he is the secretary of the said The Maritime Canal Company of Nicaragua; that he has read the foregoing annual report and knows the contents thereof, and that the same is in all respects correct and true.

THOMAS B. ATKINS. Sworn to before me this 4th day of December, 1899. (SEAL.

FRANK MAHTAH.

STATE OF NEW YORK,

City and County of Neuc York, 88: On the 4th day of December, in the year 1899, before me personally came Thomas B. Atkins, known to me to be the secretary of The Maritime Canal Company of Nicaragua, and with whom I am personally acquainted, who, being by me duly sworn, did depose and say that he resided in Roselle, N. J.; that he was the secretary of The Maritime Canal Company of Nicaragua; that he knew the corporate seal of said company; that the seal affixed to the foregoing report was such corporate seal; that it was so affixed by the order of the board of directors of said company, and that he signed his name thereto by the like order as secretary of the said company.

And the said Thomas B. Atkins further said that he was acquainted with Hiram Hitchcock, and knew him to be the president of said company; that the signature of the said Hiram Hitchcock subscribed to the said instrument was in the genuine handwriting of the said Hiram Hitchcock, and was thereto subscribed by the like order of the said board of directors, and in the presence of him, the said Thomas B. Atkins.

In witness wherof I have hereunto set my hand and official seal this 4th day of December, 1899. (SEAL.]

FRANK MAHTAH.

purpose; and these laws, and the operation of the commissions thus authorized, have been approved by the Governments of Nicaragua and Costa Rica.

This action caused an uncertainty as to the final location of the route. This uncertainty, with other causes referred to in the last and former reports of the company (to which attention is called), has made it as yet impossible to resume the work of construction.

The company placed its surveys, maps, buildings, etc., at the disposal of these commissions, and the present commission is now making use of the company's buildings and facilities in Nicaragua.

At the close of the last annual report reference was made to an agreement for another canal concession that had been made by the Government of Nicaragua in violation of the rights and interests not only of this company, but of the United States and of Costa Rica.

On the 2d of December, 1898, this company protested to the honorable Secretary of State of the United States against this action of Nicaragua. A copy of the protest is hereto annexed, marked Exhibit A.

On the 8th of September, 1899, the company made a further protest to the honorable Secretary of State, containing a request for the assistance and intervention of the Government of the United States in the protection of the property and rights of the company, a copy of which is also hereto annexed, marked Exhibit B.

Attention is respectfully called to both of these protests.

In witness whereof the Maritime Canal Company of Nicaragua has caused its corporate seal to be hereunto affixed and these presents to be signed by its president and secretary this 4th day of December, A. D. 1899.

THE MARITIME CANAL COMPANY OF NICABAGUA, (SEAL.] HIRAM HITCHCOCK, President.

THOMAS B. ATKINS, Secretary. Hon. E. A. HITCIICOCK,

Secretary of the Interior.

STATE OF NEW YORK,

City and County of New York, ss: Hiram Hitchcock, being duly sworn, says that he is the president of the said The Maritime Canal Company of Nicaragua; that he has read the foregoing annual report and knows the contents thereof, and that the same is in all respects correct and true.

HIRAM HITCHCOCK. Sworn to before me this 4th day of December, 1899. (SEAL.]

FRANK MAHTAH.

STATE OF NEW YORK,

City and County of New York, ss: Thomas B. Atkins, being duly sworn, says that he is the secretary of the said The Maritime Canal Company of Nicaragua; that he bas read the foregoing annual report and knows the coutents thereof, and that the same is in all respects correct and true.

THOMAS B. ATKINS. Sworn to before me this 4th day of December, 1899. (SEAL.

FRANK MAHTAH.

exclusive privileges, and if permitted so to do, will inflict great loss and irreparable injury upon the bondholders and stockholders of said corporation.

The facts herein stated and grounds of protest herein presented are only a part of the wrongs done to the Maritime Canal Company in connection with the construction of the canal under its concession. Other very serious wrongs have been done to said company by the Government of Nicaragua, which in due season will be stated and laid before the Government of the United States.

The grounds stated in this protest directly concern the United States as well as the Maritime Canal Company of Nicaragua.

The Maritime Canal Company of Nicaragua therefore prays the assistance and interposition of the Government of the United States in the protection of its property and exclusive rights against the aforesaid arbitrary and unlawful acts of the Republic of Nicaragua. Respectfully,

THE MARITIME CANAL COMPANY OF NICARAGUA, By Hiram HITCHCOCK, President.

EXHIBIT B.

THE MARITIME CANAL COMPANY OF NICARAGUA,

54 and 56 Broad street, New York, September 8, 1899. Hon. John Hay, Secretary of State.

Sir: The Maritimo Canal Company of Nicaragua, chartered by act of Congress approved February 20, 1889, and owner of the exclusive privilege granted by the Republic of Nicaragua to A. G. Menocal on April 24, 1887, to excavate and operate a maritime canal across the territory of said Republic between the Atlantic and Pacific oceans, hereby renews and in all respects confirms the protest, dated December 2, 1898, heretofore filed by the coinpany in the State Department against the action of the Government of Nicaragua in granting to Messrs. Edward Eyre and Edward F. Cragin on the 30th day of October, 1898, a concession purporting to be a grant in perpetuity of the exclusive right to construct an interoceanic ship canal through the territory of said Republic, and in attempting to declare that the said Menocal concession will expire on the 9th day of October, 1899. In amplification of said protest the Maritime Canal Company desires to present and lay before the Government of the United States the following supplemental and more detailed statement of the wrongs done to the said company by the Republic of Nicaragua and of the grounds for protesting against the same:

First. The people and the Government of the United States are deeply interested in the Nicaragua Canal as a necessary means of postal, commercial, military, and naval communication between our coasts and as an indispensable highway for purposes of national protection and defense.

Acting on these great national necessities, Congress and the executive department of the Government have declared in laws, resolutions, treaties, and diplomatio announcements that the United States demand and will provide for opening a ship canal through the Nicaragua lakes and the San Juan River as a canal to be under the control of the United States, so that such a canal, to be so controlled, is a distinct feature in the public policy of the United States.

Nicaragua and Costa Rica, in the terms of the respective concessions to the Maritime Canal Company, have recognized said demand and such declaration of public policy by making their concessions to an association of Americans in New York, and in making them a law of each of said Republics, and also by accepting a cbarter enacted by Congress in which the Government of the United States is given full legislative, administrative, and political control over the conduct of said corporation in the provision reserving to Congress the right to alter, amend, or repeal the charter, and in requiring annual reports to be made, under oath, by the president and the secrotary of said corporation to the Secretary of the Interior.

Under the provisions of said charter, the Maritime Canal Company, acting through its lawful authorities, proceeded to make contracts for the construction of said canal on the line of the survey made by A. G. Menocal and accepted by Nicaragua and Costa Rica, and said contracts are still subsisting and partly executed, and issues of stock and bonds remain to be made to such contractors in payment of their work, and other issues of stock and of bonds and scrip for bonds, sold for money or issued for work done, remain in the hands of innocent holders for value, nearly all of such holders of contracts, stock certificates, bonds, and scrip for bonds being citizens of the United States.

The Government of Nicaragua has attempted and is still attempting to repudiate all of said obligations by declaring that the concession owned by the company shall not possess any legal validity after the 9th day of October, 1899, and that all rights under it will be forfeited on said date, which action of Nicaragua is in contraven. tion of the rights of the Government of the United States and of its duty to protect its citizens against said wrongs, and of the rights of American citizens who hold certificates of stock, bonds, and scrip for the bonds of said corporation, and it amounts to the unlawful confiscation of valuable property of the company in the Republic of Nicaragua.

Second. The right asserted and claimed by Nicaragua to declare that the concession to the company is forfeited, or that it will expire by limitation on the 9th day of October, 1899, is founded on a willful misconception of the true intent and meaning of said concession by said Republic.

No right to forfeit said concession is given by its provisions, either by express stipulation or by any just intendment based upon its provisions, because of the company's failure to complete said canal within the period of ten years from the date fixed for commencing work on said canal. Nor is there any such provision or just intendment that said concession will expire as to the rights and privileges therein granted to the company if said canal is not completed within such period of ten years.

Said concession provides for certain conditions precedent, upon the performance of which certain rights of the company are made to depend, which conditions precedent are all set forth in said concession, with the penalties for nonperformance specifically provided.

The company in due time and in full compliance with all of said conditions precedent performed the same fully, and Nicaragua accepted such performance and confirmed to the company the full right to all the grants made in said concession according to its true intent and meaning, and thereupon Nicaragua became bound to keep and perform all its covenants, duties, and obligations to the company as the same are provided in said concession.

There is no condition of forfeiture, express or implied, in said contract whereby said concession, or any right or privilege therein granted, shall be forfeited if said canal shall not be completed by the company within a period of ten years or any other fixed period. On the contrary, the time within which said canal could be completed by the exercise of the greatest diligence and good faith on the part of the company was so uncertain, by reason of the magnitude and novelty of the work, that the Government of Nicaragua, in article 48 of said concession, while fixing a period of ten years as a reasonable period for completing and opening said canal, did not attach any condition of forfeiture thereto for the failure to complete said canal within said period; and to exclude Nicaragua as a sovereign state from the power to declare such forfeiture for that cause, which might otherwise exist, a stipulation was provided in article 48 of said concession which bound Nicaragua to concede an extension of said ten years' period.

Third. The so-called contract made by Nicaragua with Messrs. Eyre & Cragin is an unlawful attempt to abrogate and repudiate the concession owned by the com

INT 99—MIS, PT 1—36

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