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vision or agency, the invoices of goods shipped for the United States from the ports at which CONSULS, &c.-to
authenticate in voices, they reside, &c., and relative to the making of actual instead of sham allowances in all &c. cases where allowances are purported to be made on the invoices, especially from England, with other particulars: S's cir. 26th March, 1819; V. 2, p. 100.
533. (The co-operation of Consuls abroad, Collectors, merchants, and others, is requested (Scheme of agricul
tural improvement, by in promoting a scheme of the President of the United States for introducing useful and or forwarding plants,
Seeds, &c.) namental trees, plants, seeds, and a variety of other objects, with suitable information thereon; to be addressed to the Secretary of the Treasury, in unison with a similar instruction by the Secretary of the Navy to commanders of public vessels: S's cir. 6th September and 15th November, 1827; V. 2, pp. 190, 194.)
534. The depreciated currency of foreign countries having been variously estimated at Their certificates of different custom-houses, it is deemed proper, in order to establish uniformity therein, to re- rency of invoices, re
exchange value of curquire from importers a certificate of the United States Consul at the place of shipment of quired to accompany
&. the goods, of the true value of the currency of the invoice, in Spanish or United States silver dollars; or, in the absence of such a certificate, to ascertain the value of such currency from the most authentic sources of information, and estimate the ad valorem duties accordingly: S’s cir. 14th May, 1831; V.2, p. 267. (36.)
535. The aforesaid instructions of 14th May, 1831, are explained, as being applicable to all Invoices made out in such foreign currency, whether the goods be subject to ad valorem or specific duties, or be free of duty: S's cir. 16th August, 1831; V.2, p. 271.
(Same subject. 1
536. In consequence of representations by Consuls abroad, that Collectors have neglected to comply with the instructions of the 14th May and the 16th August, 1831, they have been called on for explanation: S's cir. 26th June, 1832; V.2, p. 287.
537. The circular instructions (37) of the 20th April, 1833, (addressed to officers of the customs, No. 649, sequel,) prescribing regulations for executing the acts of the 14th July, 1832, and 20 March, 1833, are hereby transmitted to American Consuls abroad, with copies of those acts for their guide: S's cir. 6th May, 1833; V. 2, p. 315.
538. Consuls ore reminded of the instructions of the 14th May, 1831, with other minute instructions here added on the same subject, respecting the certificate they shall furnish to Collectors of the exchange value of the currency of the country in which they reside; and are requested to forward specimens of foreign coins to the Treasury Department: S's cir. 31st August, 1833; V.2, p. 309.
To make a state- 539. The form of a Consular certificate, as embraced in the instructions to Collectors of ment of the Spanish vessels arriving at the 23 February instant, and required to be used in executing the act of the 30th June the United States, &c., last,“ respecting Tonnage Duties on Spanish vessels," is transmitted to our Consuls, toin executing a certain gether with a copy of said circular-adding a request that the Consuls will make quarterly
statements or returns to the Departinent, of the Spanish vessels that may have entered the ports of their Consulate from the United States—the names of the Consignees--and a List of the cargoes: S's cir. 24th February, 1835; V.3, p. 73.
540. The aforesaid instructions of the 23 and 24th February last, are transmitted to American Cousuls residing at the Islands of Cuba and Porto Rico, with additional requests in regard to Spanish vessels and their cargoes entering from any other ports of America be. sides those of the United States and of the Islands of Cuba and Porto Rico: S's cir. 3d March, 1835; V.3, p. 75.
To give information 541. Consuls and Commercial Agents are requested to contribute information in pursuance
and other countries, destined for the United States: S's cir. 7th July, 1836; V.3, p. 104.
(The Secretary of 542. (A circular to American Consuls from the Secretary of State, dated the 1st July, State issued detailed instructions to Con- 1838, (not in this collection, though it should be, as collateral information to the Treasury suls, Ist of July, 1838, proper to be noted here Department and its accounting officers) says—". The following instructions are intended to
supersede those which have, at different periods, been issued from this Departinent, embodying directions to those officers, and arranging them under proper heads, for the purpose of making them easily referred to, and producing uniformity in all the Consular proceedings.” By this opening paragraph, it is perceived, that all former instructions of the Secretary of State to Consuls and Commercial Agents are superseded, except such parts of them as are incorporated with, and make part of that now issued.)
( 37.) In the Circular above referred to, of the 20th of April, 1833, No. 649, sequel, (the Secretary of the Treasury prescribes rules and regulations "for the purpose of securing a faithful appraisement of all the Goods imported after the 31st of December, 1833, and for the just and proper entries of the actuaL VALUE THEREOF, and of the square yards, parcels, and other quantities, as the case may require,” in executing the acts of the 14th of July, 1832, and 2d of March, 1833; and in relation to the gradual reduction of Duties thereon, he adds—"The value of all such articles being thus ascertained, the proportion which the duty now paid by such articles hears to the said value, will be calculated, and from the excess thereof beyond twenty per centum, there will be deducted, from and after the 31st of December next, (1834,) ten per centum: that is to say, where such proportion shall be equal to fifty per centum, there shall be deducted ten per centum upon thirty per centum, or three dollars: and from and after the 31st of December, 1835, the like deduction shall be made from the same excess, or ten per centum upon thirty per centum, being three dollars more; and in the same manner at the several periods specified in the said act of the 2d of March, 1833, until the 31st of December, 1839, from and after which, one-half of the residue of such excess will be deducted; and other half thereof, from and after the 30th of June, 1842.") See the said circular inserted in the form of a note on No. 649, sequel.
(Detailed instructions to Consuls.)
(The said Circular is accompanied with the Acts of Congress concerning Consuls and Vice Consuls—and concludes with a circular of the Secretary of the Navy Department, to Commanders of American Ships of War visiting foreign ports, prescribing the “ etiquette” to be observed by them in their intercourse with American Consuls at such ports, reciprocal and in harmony with those of the Secretary of State enjoined on Consuls in chapter VII.) (38.)
543. (On the 30th July, 1840, the Secretary of State issued another“ Circular to Con- (Another circular
of the Secretary of suls of the United States," simply conveying to them a copy of the act passed July 12th, State, of 1840. 1840, entitled “ an act in addition to the several acts regulating the shipment and discharge of Seamen, and the Duties of Consuls”—for their information and government.) ( 39.)
Consuls are request544. (The Secretary of the Treasury makes inquiries of Consuls abroad, respecting the
ed to collect informapractical system of the countries in which they are stationed, of collecting, keeping, and tion of the Treasury
operations of Foreign disbursing the public money, viz.-1. In what kind of funds is the revenue collected, and Governments, &c.) who prescribes the kind received? 2. By whom, and how, are they kept until expended or remitted, and at whose risk? 3. By whom are they paid out, in what kind, and under whose direction? 4. How are they transmitted to the seat of Government, and at whose risk? 5. Can they be legally loaned out or used, by the officers who either collect, keep, and disburse them? 6. And what guards or checks against the misuse of public funds are in force? Also, books and pamphlets on the subject are requested, with a speedy answer: S's cir. 7th August, 1838; V. 3, p. 175.)
545. In pursuance of a Resolution of the House of Representatives, of the 25th of Feb. --Also, respecting the
state of reciprocity in ruary, 1839, directing the Secretary of the Treasury to " report into what ports of the British Colonial Amer
ca and West India British Colonies in the West Indies, and elsewhere in America, are United States vessels ad
ports, towards Amermitted on the sarne terms as British vessels are admitted into ports of the United States
ican vessels, or prefer
ence to their own. with what description of merchandise—and whether the ports of British Colonies have been opened to vessels of the United States, and continue open, in the true sense of the act of 291h of May, 1830, and the proclamation of the President of the 5th of October, 1830"the said inquiries are referred to Consuls and Commercial Agents resident in British Colovies in America and the West Indies—said inquiries being set on foot because of the great preponderance of British vessels engaged in that trade, indicating some advantages enjoyed by them over American vessels: S's cir. 25th February, 1839; V. 3, pp. 203, 205. ( 40.)
( 38 ) This embodiment of the Instructions of the Department of State to Consuls and Vice Consuls of the United States, will be found entire in the APPENDIX, marked No. III.
( 39. ) Of these two circulars of the Secretary of State, though issued by the same officer, the honorable John Forsyth, and on the same subject, to the same class of officers, the former one, of 42 pages, adopts the 12mo. form, while the latter, of 3 pages only, adopts the folio form—which variance renders them entirely unsuitable for uniform binding and preservation: but this is in unison with the practice in all the Departments respecting such documents. They vary very frequently from the diminutive 12mo. to the folio size-while a little reflection would satisfy every one that they should be of a uniform plan in all the Departments.
( 40.) Since the above date of 25th of February, 1839, there has been no circular from the Treasury Department to Consuls, though the act of 1840, communicated by the Secretary of State, as above shown, may have required it—as, certainly, the same act called for its communication to Collectors, with instructions, but of which there is no evidence that any such has been made by the Treasury Department to Collectors. In regard to this, and all similar cases, it need hardly be conjectured, what would be the injurious consequences of such oversight, and how essential it is that all acts of Congress should be promptly communicated to the officers who are expected to execute them, as well as that they be familiar to the Accounting Officers who settle accounts accruing under them.
(See a note on this sec- Of Officers of the Customs in general, their functions, &c., viz: Collectors, Naval Officers, Surtion, at the end of it.)
veyors, Inspectors, Appraisers, Weighers, Gaugers, Measurers, Clerks—Endorsements on Public Documents-Absenteeism from Office, &c.
COLLECTORS: 546. Collectors are informed, that on this day the Comptroller of the Treasury will their accounts forms transmit to them the forms necessary for making their Returns to the Secretary's Office, and and returns of, &c.
their returns of Quarterly Accounts for settlement to the Accounting Officers of the Treasury: S’s cir. 1st December, 1789; V. 1, p. 34.
547. The general mode of conducting the business of Collectors, in relation to the accounting or revenue department of their offices, is prescribed by the Comptroller, and the forms transmitted relative thereto, as above notified by the Secretary of the Treasury: C's cir. 1st December, 1789; V. 1, pp. 1 to 10.
548. The aforesaid instructions and forms, of the 1st December, 1789, are amended in several respects: C's cir. 16th February, 1790; V.1, p. 13.
549. All forms transmitted by the Comptroller are required to be considered as authentic, whether reference be made to the approval of the Secretary or not: S's cir. 17th February, 1790; V. 1, p. 45.
-quarterly returns 550. A particular account of any seizures of vessels, goods, wares, and merchandise, to
be accompanied with account of seiz- certified by the Naval Officer, is required to appear in the Quarterly Returns of Collectors: ures, &c.:
C's cir. 18th June, 1790; V.1, p. 17.
Quarterly returns to be promply made :
551. The Quarterly Returns for settlement are required to be promptly made; and even when there is nothing done “ a blank form must be forwarded, stating the fact, to go on file;” and attention is required to the folding, and the endorsing of the contents, of documents transmitted: S's cir. 23d September, 1790; V. 1, pp. 59, 60.
552. The aforesaid instructions, of the 23 September, 1790, respecting the prompt returns of Quarterly Accounts, are repeated with exactness; and passed neglects of them reproved: S's cir. 230 September, 1792; V. 1, p. 125.
-Quarterly Abstracts 553. Instructions are given to Collectors modifying the form of the Abstracts of Duties
Gaugers, &c., and of debentures payable on account of drawbacks of Duties, and for
-Weekly returns to
554. The Weekly Returns to the Secretary of the Treasury, of the receipts of public correspond with quar
moneys by Collectors, are required to commence and conclude with each quarter, so as to terly accounts current ---with other general correspond, in the aggregate, with the Quarterly Returns-a schedule of the dates and which are to be kept in amounts of remittances to the Treasury, and of payments to Banks, are to correspond with dollars and cents.
Quarterly Returns—the salaries of Collectors and other officers are to be paid Quarterly, and charged, in the Accounts Current, to the Treasury-the accounts are to be kept in dollars and cents, and no fractional parts of a cent to be introduced--and the accounts of all receipts and expenditures are required to be closed up at the end of the year: C's cir. 24th December, 1792; V. 1, p. 37.
555. (Between the Quarterly Accounts of Collectors of principal districts, transmitted discrepancy between for settlement, and their Weekly Returns to the Secretary of the Treasury, for the last ly returns complained week of the quarter, a great discrepancy exists, which requires explanation from said Col- of: lectors: C's cir. 17th February, 1840; V.3, p. 791.)
556. In order that the accounts and records of the Department may exhibit, in a clear ---rules for making re
turns uniform, accordand perspicuous manner, the operations of the act of the 2d March, 1833, amendatory of ing to act of 24 March,
1833 : the act of the 14th July, 1832, certain regulations are required to be conformed to, in making the Collector's Returns: C's cir. 25th March, 1836; V.3, p. 523.
557. Accounts of Duty Bonds not due, and of Duty Bonds due and not paid, and of cash
Account of Bonds
due, Bonds paid, and on hand, are required to be rendered forthwith, by principal Collectors, under the certifi- cash in hand, called
for: cates of Naval Officers, &c., for the use of the President: C's cir. 10th November, 1838; V.3, p. 661.
558. Collectors are required to afford every facility to Naval Officers, in discharging their facilities to Naval
Officers, in examining duty as examiners of Collector's Accounts: C's cir. 27th December, 1838; V. 3, p. 695. Collectors' accounts.
559. Accounts of Collectors are to be made up, in all cases, to the end of their commis- Accounts to be made
up, to end of Collecsions, whether under temporary appointment before confirmation by the Senate, or under tors' commissions : such confirmation for four years, or the unexpired balance of official terms: C's cir. 2d September, 1839; V.3, p. 772.
560. Further instructions are given respecting the making up of Collectors' Accounts to also in relation to the end of their commissions; and also in relation to their official bonds: O's cir. 10th their official bonds : July, 1840; V. 3, p. 835.
561. Accounts of Collectors, before and after their appointment is confirmed by the Senate, are required to be rendered in separate series, as appertaining to the different official bonds, for those distinct official periods: C''s cir. 20th March, 1843; V.3, p. 1011.
562. Instructions are given, and reference made to the circulars of the Secretary of the Account current re
turns required, under Treasury of the 9th July instant, respecting the Accounts Current required under the Sub- the Subtreasury act: treasury act of Receivers General, the Treasurer of the Mint, Collectors of the Customs, Receivers of Public Moneys at Land Offices, &c., of which Accounts Current a form is transmitted, and a certificate appended, to be returned, weekly, to the Treasurer of the United States: C's cir. 31st July, 1840; V.3, p. 837.
563. (The several circulars of the Secretary of the Treasury, of July 9th, 1840, referred to in the foregoing, being of the same general purport, it will be superfluous to repeat what is summed up in the above of more recent date; except to make a more particular reference to them: S's cirs. 7th and 9th July, 1840; V. 3, pp. 228 to 239.)