Henry Alvin Brown.

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"Hawaiian IcGiprociti] f leatg llundcrs.


WASHINGTON, D. C., June 12, 1886.

To 1'iiifrd States Senators and Representatives in Congress assembled:

First: There was no commercial advantage for the United States
to gain by negotiating the treaty of 1875-76 ; that the trade of the
Sandwich Islands had long been controlled by Boston merchants
prior to that time, and could have been increased by them ad libi-
tum without this Government subsidy, is too well known to require
proof. The United States Government knew this, Daniel Web-
ster's statement upon this topic as Secretary of State in 1842, to the
House of Representatives, being as follows :

Mr. Webster said: "Considering therefore that the United States
ess so very large a share of the intercourse with those islands,
it is deemed not unfit to make the declaration that the Government
seeks nevertheless no peculiar advantages, no exclusive control
over the Hawaiian Government;" and these views were acted upon
when Daniel Webster made the treat}^ of 1849 with Hawaii, to
which I shall refer later.

Charles Nordoff, in his volume of travels in California, Oregon,
and the Sandwich Islands prior to the treaty of 1875-76, says : "It
is plain the island trade is so largely in our hands that no other
nation can be said to dispute it with us; if our flag flew over
Honolulu we could hardly expect to have a more complete monopoly
of Hawaiian commerce than we now enjoy ; moreover, almost all
the sugar plantations and the greater number of stock farms are
owned by Americans ; what the islands are," continues Nordhoff.
" they are because of American enterprise and Boston capital, which
established the sugar culture and other important industries."

There being no commercial advantage for the United States to gain
by the treaty of 1875-76, it is evident that the treaty was a job put up
by American merchants who controlled Sandwich Islands commerce,
and captured a good-natured ring "to march at the head of their
triumphant procession through the country to advocate the treaty
at our expense." Although our market for Hawaiian sugar was

and is the best and the principal market they had or can have,
treaty or no treaty, those enterprising merchants wanted the duty
on Hawaiian sugar in their own pockets, and got it by the treaty at
public expense.

This snug little enterprise of 1875-76, which transferred three
cents or more per pound duty from the United States Treasury to
the pockets of its projectors, quickly assumed gigantic proportions.
The records of the Bureau of Statistics furnish evidence about
Hawaiian sugars as follows :

Quantities and values of dutiable Ha-
waiian 8n<t<ir imported front, 1868 to
1876, inclusive,

Year. Pounds. Dollars.

1808 18,241,01)2 95(5,898

1X09 10,314,482 1,087,433

1870 14,010,181 901,045

1871 15,018,409 935,90!)

1X72 15, 357, 7X I 923,441

Quantities and ralucx of free,

sugar imported from 1X77 f<> 18S5, in-

Year. Pounds. Dollar?.

1877 30,042,081 2,108.47:1

1878 30,308, :-J28 2,274,430

1879 41,09:!. od'.) 2,811.1'.)::

1880 01,550,324 4,135,487

1881 76,909,207 4,927,021

1873 1. ",,74:1.1-4!, 9:54,824 1882 106,181,858 6,918,084

1874 l:!,.yr.->,074 740,786 1883 114,132,070 7,::4<).o:;:',

1X75 17,888,000 938, 070

1876 20,978,374 1,051,987

1884 125,148,680 7,108,292

1885 109,052,783 8,198,144

The Hawaiian Islands contain about 4,355,000 acres of land ;
80,000 acres the lowest Spreckels estimate to 150,000 acres or
more are available sugar lands ; the average yield is five tons of
sugar per acre of cane every eighteen months, or 3J tons per an-
num ; 80,000 acres will produce 266,000 tons of 2,240 pounds, or
595,840,000 pounds per annum ; 95,000 tons of sugar were produced
in 1885 against about 65,000 tons in 1884. At this pro Tata of
increase a product of 266,000 tons per annum will be reached in
five years.

But we are informed by Mr. Spalding, a treaty advocate, in his
pamphlet of 1882, that " it is supposed that no more than from 100,000
to 150,000 acres in all the islands can be used for the culture of the
sugar cane." If we split the difference and say 125.000 acres, the
product would reach 416,666 tons of 2,240 pounds or 933,331,840
pounds per annum in about ten years at the present pro rata of in-
crease. Even this does not limit the capacity of the Hawaiian
Islands, known to be " the finest sugar-producing country in the

According to official records B. S., Feb. 26, '86, Hawaiian sugars
averaged 93 crystals in 1884-'S5 and about 13 D. S. in color.
According to hundreds of tests made for this writer they averaged
94 crystals and above 13 D. S. in color. Taking the official
average, 93, the present duty on which is 2.12 cts. per lb., and
when above 13 D. S. in color 2.75 cts. per lb., and when above 16

D. S. in color 3 cts. per lb., we find the oflicial report of loss of duty
on Hawaiian sugars imported in 1S81 and 1885 to be as follows:

l')4,<;i. >,!!)'.> lls., uvrr:i<;v ( .i:!, at 12 cts. p.-r 11.. * 1, 1 -'.">, S l'_>

( .>7,ls7.7lo Ibs., above l-'i I). 2.7-") cts. per lb. 2,672,662

J.'.i'.is..V,l ll.s., alu.vr IfJD. S.,at 3 cts. per lh. 7'., '."><;

il,soi,.Jf;;; Ibs., av. \r.} and 18 D. S. Loss, 2J cts. per lb $6,878,460

The actual average grade of Hawaiian sugars imported in 1SS4-'S5
was, however, known to be above 13 D. S. and the loss of duty under
the 1883 tariff in 18S4-'85 was 2.75 cts. per lb. on 294,801,463 Ibs.,
or 8,107,070. Prior to the tariff of March 3, 1883, the average loss
of duty per pound was greater. At present rates the annual loss of
duty on an annual Hawaiian product from 80,000 acres would ap-
proximate 2.75 cts. per lb. on 595,840,000 Ibs., or $16,385,000, and
on an annual product from 125,000 acres the annual loss of duty
would approximate 2.75 cts. per lb. on 933,331,840 Ibs., or $25,666,625.
Towards this' condition the nation is hastened by the Hawaiian

With a normal capacity for producing beet, cane, and sorghum
sugar sufficient for home consumption, with modern inventions
which secure ten (10) per cent, of the sucrose contained in beets,
cane, and sorghum, and the knowledge that in 1861 Louisiana pro-
duced 528,300,000 Ibs. of cane sugar, and is again increasing her
production, while in 1885 we obtained in quantities at Alvarado,
Cal., 190 Ibs. of refined sugar per ton of beets and in the West 100
Ibs. of sugar per ton of sorghum, it would be monstrous to thus
overslaugh our struggling sugar industries by continuing the treaty.

During eight years ending June 30, 1884, under the treaty the
duty lost on sugar amounted to more than our exports to the
Hawaiian Islands, as follows : Total imports of merchandise, $42,-
072,264 ; total exports of domestic merchandise, $20,162,798; sugars,
imports, consumed, $37,623,013. Duty lost on sugar, at least 60 per
cent, ad valorem, $22,573,806. Of the $42,072,264 of merchandise
imported only $364,994 was dutiable. Thus, during eight years, we
received less duty in the aggregate from Hawaiian merchandise im-
ported than we annually remit on Hawaiian rice.

Our trade with Hawaii in the year ended June 30, 1885, was as
follows: Total imports for consumption, $8,857,497; total exports
domestic merchandise, $2,709,573; sugar imports consumed, $8,198,-
144; duty lost on actual grades imported, at least 60 per cent, ad
valorem, or $4,918,886. Of the total imports of merchandise from
Hawaii, in 1885, $8,817,067 was free of duty ; in the year ended
June 30, 1876, we imported from Hawaii $1,376,681 merchandise,

of which $1,184,610 was dutiable, whereas our imports from Hawaii
in 1885 amounted to $8,857,497, of which only $40,430 of merchan-
dise was dutiable.

Our imports of merchandise from Hawaii increased from $8,238,-
461 in 1883 to $8,857,497 in 1885, while our exports of merchan-
dise to Hawaii decreased from $3,683,460 in 1883 to $2,709,573 in
1885; it is therefore evident that the maximum capacity of
the Hawaiians for consuming our merchandise has been reached,
and that the capacity of Hawaii for producing "free" sugar not
only costs the people additional millions of dollars annually,
but is sufficient to destroy our sugar producing and refining indus-
tries and cripple our commerce with all other sugar-producing
countries, unless the treaty in its present iniquitous form is ended

Second : There was no political advantage to be gained by the
treaty of 1875-76. Mr. Nordhoff, in his volume of travels (prior to
the treaty) in Hawaii, &c., before quoted herein, says : " Our political
preponderance in the islands is as complete as our commercial."
Even had this not been the case the Webster treaty of 1849, made
with the King of the Hawaiian Islands, which is still in force, covers
the entire political ground, and, as regards the Hawaiian Islands,
gives the United States (in common with England) security for their
Pacific Ocean commerce, and Pacific Ocean harbors for their navy
whenever they have any.

It has been well said that, under the Webster-Hawaii treaty of
1849, "it seems almost too clear to admit of argument that any at-
tempt to lease or otherwise dispose of, or create any lien upon, any
port, or grant any special privileges or rights of use therein to any
other power, State, or Government, would be a palpable violation of
the terms of this (1849) treaty." Thus article IV of the reciprocity
treaty of 1875 is simply humbug ; the king had no power to lease,
dispose of, or create any lien upon any port, harbor, or territory, or
grant any special privileges to the United States in 1875, and has
no such power at the present time.

By the treaty of 1849 all the rights and advantages this nation
has a right to or can claim in the Islands are secured and will be
retained if the reciprocity treaty of 1875-76 should be terminated ;
besides, in 1851 Great Britain concluded a treaty with Hawaii in
terms similar to the Webster treaty of 1849, but made it perpetual
except as regards duties on imports. Not only is the reciprocity
treaty of no avail politically, but any cession of Pearl river to the
United States by King Kalakaua and any attempt of the United
States to fortify or occupy Pearl River or any other Hawaiian port as

a naval station would be rightly resisted by Great Britain as a vio-
lation of the treaty of 1851.

Charles Nordhoff, in his volume of travels in Hawaii, etc., from
which I have already quoted, says: "As I write, a negotiation has
been opened with the United States Government for the purpose of
offering us Pearl river in exchange for a reciprocity treaty," but
Pearl river was neither ceded to us nor heard from again until
abrogation was favored by the Ways and Means Committee, House
of Representatives, this session, and the recent advent of the new
treaty job at the doors of the United States Senate.

Pearl river is situated on the south side of the Island of Oahu;
the entrance to the river is about six miles west by north of Hono-
lula, the capital of the Hawaiian Islands; being narrow and abrupt
the river can be easily blockaded effectually; a bar of solid rock
crosses the entrance, which would have to be removed to enable
vessels of any size to enter the river safely. Millions of dollars
would be required to render Pearl river of any value to any nation
as a naval station.

In the new Hawaiian treaty recently formulated by treaty ad-
vocates with Senatorial aid, for Senate action to counteract any
movement of the House towards abrogation of the present treaty, it
is proposed to usurp the prerogative of the House, and not only
adjust but barter away the customs revenue of the country for Pearl
river harbor, 2,100 miles from home, to which we can have no right
that Great Britain is not entitled to share, and which, if accepted,
would cost this country millions of dollars to open out and fortify,
while our great Atlantic and Pacific ports and harbors are at the
mercy of almost any nation.

The rumor that a syndicate of European capitalists propose to
buy the Hawaiian Islands for $10,000,000, i. e., to loan the kingdom
that sum and gobble the islands for payment, is another Pearl river
dodge intended to influence Congress. Cursory consideration of
the topic presents reasons why the Spreckels and Pacific coast free-
sugar rings would give double the money named for the islands
which they already virtually control, to say nothing of the existing
treaty bars of 1849 and 1851.

Third: Not only was the job treaty of 1875-76 a fraud which
has culminated in a gigantic public swindle, but the provisions
and language of the treaty have been outrageously subverted.
The language of the treaty is clear as to what sugars are entitled
to free entry, to wit: "Muscovado, brown, and all other unrefined
sugar," but was subtly qualified by adding "meaning hereby the
grades of sugar heretofore commonly imported from the Hawaiian


Islands, and now known in the markets of San Francisco and Port-
land as Sandwich Island sugar."

More or less clayed and clarified in other words, refined sugars,
known as Sandwich Island sugars, were imported from those islands
prior to the treaty; this feet led to the free admission of sugar re-
fined and grained in vacuum pans and centrifugals, from 08 to
99.9 pure crystals, shadowed outwardly in order not to ex-
ceed No. 20 D. S. in color, albeit white sugars above No. 20 D. S.
have also been entered free of duty under the above qualification

Large quantities of Hawaiian sugars arrive in San Francisco that
polarize 99 and over ; the crystals are colored outwardly below 20
D. S., and these refined sugars are fraudulently entered free of duty ;
thousands of tons of Hawaiian sugars testing 96 to 99.6, in some
cases 100, pure crystals, having only a film of outside coloring,
have been entered free as " Muscovado, brown, and unrefined (or
raw) sugar." The writer has hundreds of samples of Hawaiian
sugars intrinsically equal to white granulated sugars, some of which
samples polarize higher than hard refined sugars.

Although Hawaiian sugars are admitted free of duty, the remitted
duty is added to the first cost of such sugars sent to this country,
while the sugars are sold to California refiners atparity of value with
duty-paid sugars, and two to three cents per pound above New York
prices of refined sugars has been regularly filched from Pacific
coast consumers of duty-free sugars.

This writer was recently informed by an ex-member of King
Kalakaua's cabinet that he had "seen Canton and Philippine Island
sugars in mats transferred from vessels at the Hawaiian Islands,
without landing, to schooners which, when thus loaded, cleared for
San Francisco." Certainly the opportunity for such treachery is sup-
plied by the sugar treaty, and merchants of Hawaii are no more ex-
empt from the allurements of illicit sugar traffic than are merchants
in other countries, notwithstanding the servile report in 1883, made
by the commission appointed by the late Secretary Folger to in-
vestigate treaty frauds, which declares everything lovely, but savors
of Spreckel's dictation and missionary intrigue throughout.

The following is from testimony at the hearing before the Com-
mittee on Foreig.i Affairs, H. R., March 9, 1882 : "My opinion,
based upon observation (in the islands), is that the treaty has re-
sulted in the demoralization and impoverishment of the natives to
a fearful extent." One of the anonymous writers for the treaty
recently inadvertently proved that the Hawaiians are grossly swin-
dled for our profit; although they sent us more than three times as

much as they bought from us, we are told for buncombe that the
Hawaiians still owe us millions. Assuredly such a treaty should
end for humanity sake.

The Hawaiian minister to the United States, who appears in an
advertisement in the Daily Bulletin of Honolulu, March 27, 1886, as
a director of the " C. Brewer Co. Honolulu, Limited, General Mer-
cantile and Commission Agents," represents his patron, the Sugar
King de facto, who opposed the treaty in 1875, and now, with millions
gained thereby at public cost, defends it, rather than his legal sov-
ereign, Kalakaua,the King dejureoi Hawaii, who, through this job-
treaty enterprise, of which he is known to be heart-sick, has become
a mere nominal king with a nominal kingdom, uttererly dependent
upon the sugar king dynasty and the new California sugar ring,
which, with reason, claims to have United States Senatorial influence
and support.

Whatever advantages our Pacific coast shipping and other local
industries or the people of Hawaii may have derived from our treaty
of commerce with Hawaii, are accomplished facts, and will remain
so. Having been dearly bought by the American peophrthrough an
expensive legislative treaty blunder, they are nevertheless perma-
nent local advantages now held by a clique of sugar-food monopo-
lists, and they certainly are not entitled to further protection of
their engagements at public expense.

Having by means of the treaty annually fleeced the United States
Government and people of millions of dollars having robbed Pacific
coast consumers by compelling them to pay for duty-free sugars
two and a half to three cents per pound above New York prices for
duty-paid sugars, and having absorbed or impoverished and finan-
cially enslaved mostof the native planters of Hawaii, thereby gaining
control of the king, demoralizing his kingdom, decimating his sub-
jects, and substituting therefor a Chinese colony this, stupendous
job-treaty enterprise, which enriches a few sharp traders at public
cost and at the expense of our home industries, should be terminated
forthwith by Congress.

It is known that large sums of money have been sent to Wash-
ington to prevent abrogation of the present treaty, and failing that
to secure a new Senate treaty. Advocates of the treaty claim to rely
upon secured Senatorial influence in a Republican Senate to defeat
the action of a Democratic House, and thus, against public interests*
to continue this treaty monstrosity or perpetuate the evil by a new
treaty device.

It is also known that a Pacific coast combination has recently
been formed between the railroad companies, the American re-


finery, and the Hawaiian planters. The amount of duty, $5,000,000
per annum, now donated by this country, is to be 'divided between
the aforesaid parties, and the movement, it is alleged, has potent
Senatorial influence not entirely unconnected with recent control-
ling investments in the said refinery.

Thus, between the reigning Hawaiian sugar dynasty and the new
Pacific coast free-sugar ring, it is proposed to silence the United
States Congress or carry that body in favor of a treaty or revenue
measure that menaces American sugar industries and dutiable sugar
commerce, engenders and protects revenue frauds, and compels the
people to pay enormous annual tribute apparently to a foreign coun-
try in reality to a handful of Pacific coast sugar-food monopolists
who maintain an army of claquers and other emissaries to tempt
legislators and infest the lobbies and halls of Congress.

The reciprocity treaty of 1875-76 is a tariff and revenue measure
that "curtails the boundaries within which revenues arc or can be
raised," and a measure that " regulates foreign and domestic com-
merce." Thus in making this treaty the forever-inherent power and
prerogative of the House of Representatives to originate all reve-
nue bills, and of Congress to regulate foreign and domestic com-
merce, were usurped with disastrous results.

Regardless of our sugar-producing industries, of justice to the
people, and of its own rights, Congress lias calmly suffered this
treaty to continue its ravages, thus sanctioning a gigantic public
abuse for the sole enrichment of Pacific coast monopolists who,
already gorged with wealth, employ their surplus millions about
the capital of the nation to maintain an expensive treaty blunder,
the continuance of which by Congress will be a legislative crime.

Numerous unimpeachable statistical exposures, based upon ex-
nort kno\vlodo-o and official ovidon of Hawaiian treaty chicanery,
have been presented to Congress by this writer. Will Congress per-
form an act of public justice by the speedy enactment of the bill
to abrogate the treaty recently approved and reported to the House
by its Committee on Ways and Means, or shall legislative justice
be subverted or silenced by the mercenary claquers and golden-
coated sophistries of Hawaiian sugar monopolists and national
parasites, who boast of power in Congress and gobble millions of
dollars annually by the treaty at the expense of sixty millions of
American consumers, producers, and tax-payers?

Ex-Special Treasury Agent, Saxonville, Mass.

T. M. Reg. U.S. Pat. Off.





OCT 14 1944




Online LibraryHenry Alvin BrownHawaiian reciprocity treaty blunders. Immediate abrogation a national requirement → online text (page 1 of 1)