United States. Congress. Senate. Committee on Fore.

Compilation of reports of Committee ... 1789-1901, First Congress, first session, to Fifty-sixth Congress, second session .. online

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the whole case fairly and fully.

Mr. Wilson. Now I want to say one or two things in response



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722 THE LA ABBA SILVER MINING COMPANY.

that In the first place, I, not having been here, perhaps may not be
thoroughly informed as to one matter. I understood that a response
had been made to the application for certain papers, and that that had
been made in writing and been presented by Mr. Kennedy. I only
know that snch a pax>er was prepared in the office, bat never read it
becanse I was engaged elsewhere, and 1 supposed that that had been
done. If it has not been done it will be done.

The Chairman. That paper is here and it will be printed in the
record.

The paper is as follows :

Washington, D. C, January 25^ 1889.
To the ChaimMn of the Suhcommitiee of the

Committee on Foreign BelaiUms of tM Senate engaged in investigating La Ahra award :

Dear Sir : We on yesterday received, through our assooiate in the repreBcntation
of La Abra Company in said inveetigation, Mr. Kennedy, two letters, one dated the
8th of January, 1889, from the clerk of said committee, requesting us to produce be-
fore the committee all the records, books, accounts, correspondence, and other docu-
ments and papers pertaining to the business of said company from its organization to
the present time.

The other letter is of the same date from the said clerk askine us to furnish the
names and addresses of the present officers of said company and the names of all who
have been officers of the company since the organization thereof.

In reply to these communications, the undersigned wish to say in the first place
that since the date of the said letters neither we nor, so far as we know, any asso-
ciate of ours in the representation of said company have seen, or have had opportu-
nity to confer with, any officer of the said company, and counsel are neither poesesaed
of the information nor the means of complying with said demand as to said books,
etc., nor as to the names of officers. No officer or affent of the said company is in
this city or has been since the date of said letters, so far as we know.

We have telegraphed to the secretary of the company, Hon. Sumner Stowe Ely,
who, we suppose, is at Girard, Pa., to come to Washington immediately. We have
no reply to that telegram, but hope that he will arrive here soon.

So far as counsel are advised, they know of no objection on the part of said com-
pany to furnish the names and addresses of officers as called for, and we think that
this will be done as soon as Mr. Ely can be seen or heard from.

In regard to the production of books, etc., counsel reply that they know of no au-
thority, either in the courts or in committees of investigation in Congress, to throw
out sucn a drag-net against any citizen as Mr. Foster, in the interest of Mexico, here
attempts to employ, demanding the prodnction of every manner and description of
paper which ever existed in the business of said company, without distinction, and
without any limitation, specification or description snowing the materiality of the
paper called for.

But whilst counsel deem it proper to protest a^aiust the right to make any snoh de-
mand, yet counsel do not now know of any objection on the part of the said company to
produce any books, papers, or documents which it may be practicable for the company
to produce, and counsel will submit to the officers of the company as soon as they
can said demand for books, etc., and such officers will make due and proper response
thereto without any avoidable delay.

In this connection counsel wish to remind the committee that months a^ the
secretary of the company, Mr. Ely, filed with the committee an affidavit, showing that
the great body of the' books and papers of the said company, and embracing either
all or substantially all the books and papers of the said company down to about the
period of 1870, were boxed up, stored away in a loft, and, on thorough search re-
peatedly made about or soon after the period of 1870, were ascertained to be irre-
coverably lost, and this affidavit by Mr. Ely, as is reported to the committee by the
chairman of the «ub committee, was taken to the chairman's house, and at last ac-
counts the chairman was not able to find or return the affidavit to the committee, but
the chairman stated the substance of the affidavit correctly on page 50 of the testi-
mony taken by the sub committee, where he says :

"The substance of bis affidavit [Ely's] was that he had made very dili^nt search
for the papers of the company in New York, and, as I remember it, that ne was not
able to find any at all."

Counsel wish further to remind the committee, in this connection, that David J.
Garth was fully examined before the subcommittee regarding the loss of said books
and papers, and regarding his inability to find or produce the same, and that his
testimony was substantiallv like the affidavit of Mr. Ely. Mr. Garth's testimony
tonohing this point will be found at pages 186-189 of the same document.



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THE LA ABBA SILYEB MINING COMPANY. 723

Since writing the foregoing we learn that Mr. Ely, the secretary of the company,
in obedience to a letter from ns, has sent to the committee, and the conmiittee now
has, a list of the officers of the company, as requested. Coansel for La Abra, since
they learned that the present taking of depositions would be entered upon, have
endeavored to procure the attendance of the said secretary, Mr. Ely, before the com-
mittee, bat he nas not yet reached the city. When he does appear the committee
will have opportunity to find out from him what papers, etc., if auy, are obtainable,
and possible to be submitted to the committee. Ail that counsel can now say, further
than is above stated, regarding the production of papers is, that counsel will favor
the production of all snch papers as are named in said call, and which have any pos-
sible bearing upon the present investigation.

Shsllabarger & Wilson,

Of Counsel for La Ahra,

The Chairman. As we have been going along with this examination
papers have come ont that have been in the custody of this company
evidently for along time, and now, as I understand your intimation, you
intend to produce letters from this witness to Mr. Oreen, or to Mr. Foster,
or to Mr. Lines, which in their nature would reflect on the integrity of his
testimony.

Mr. Wilson. Not at all.

The Ghaibman. You do notf

Mr. Wilson^ So far as I know I can not say how the letters to Mr.
Lines or Mr. Foster could get in our possession. I was examining him
with a view of getting them from him.

The Ghaibman. I must say in perfect candor that the company, hav-
ing such important interests as are involved in this matter and receiving
or expecting to receive money from time to time in the payment of this
claim against Mexico, and has kept no record, no papers, nothing to be
found in regard to its transactions

Mr. Wilson. Well, as to that I say I am not prepared to say, be-
cause I have not seen the paper that has been prepared in response to it.

The Ghaibman. In conducting this examination of course I feel bound
to inform the Senate of the best evidence that can be produced of the
whole transaction, and these pax>ers have not been forthcoming and no
records have been forthcoming from the company, and of course it is
my duty to try and limit the examination now to what I might deem
the strict rules of evidence.

Mr. Wilson. Very well. Now, one other thing^ and I want to respond
a little to that. The statement made a moment ago that there was an
apparent insincerity in regard to the production of letters ; in other
words, that the witness having been examined in regard to letters and
the next day they were produced, I have simply this to say

The Ghaibman. Who made that statement f

Mr. FosTEB. I made the statement a few moments ago.

Mr. Wilson. I have simply this to say as to the papers that were
produced here. There were two packages that came, and one came by
express. I found it in the office in the evening when I went down from
court I opened it and saw it related to this case. I intended to give
it to Mr. Kennedy the next morning, but when I went oflF to court he
had not yet come into the building, and so the matter passed over that
day. and there was a session of this committee that day. When I went
bacK to the office that evening I found another package that had come
by mail, and I went to Mr. Kennedy's room and told him that I wanted
to meet him that evening, and at half past 7 we met in the office
and I turned these over to him. I did not read one of them, and then I
went off to another matter. I was with him probably fifteen or twenty
minutes* I turned them over to him and he brought them here next



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724 THE LA ABBA SILVEB MINING COMPANY.

morning. Bo that we had them in onr possession, one package, from
one evening until the next evening, when I gave them to him, and the
other package I had perhaps a couple of honrs before I turned it over
to him : but that package that contained the letters he did not have
until the night before; neither did I; and he brought them here when
he came up.

By Mr. Wilson :

Q. I believe you said that when you gave your deposition there you
went back to San Dimas on urgent business t — A. Yes.

Q. Oan you remember what was the occasion of your going back so
suddenly so that you could not have your testimony written out f — ^A.
I do most distinctly.

Q. What was that f — A. My financial affairs.

Q. That was all. was it t~A. Yes.

Q. Had you had any intimation on that subject before you started
backt — A. I was in a bad situation financially until I got this miU
started.

By the Chaibman :
Q. Your answer is, that the immediate and urgent cause of your leav-
ing Mazatlan to return to San Dimas was the state of your financial
affairs t — ^A. Yes, and my mining business.

By Mr. Wilson :

Q. I wish to ask you whether you brought with you any letters that
you had received from anybody in relation to this deposition of yours t

The Chaibman. Do you mean brought here ?

Mr. Wilson. Brought here to the city of Washington when he came
on here pursuant to this subpcBna.

A. I brought no letters that I know of.

Q. That you know oft — ^A. Yes.

Q. Well, if you did bring any you would know itt — A. Yes, I would.
1 brought no letter relating to this deposition— my own letters you
mean 1

Q. No, no; I mean letters that you had received from parties Y— A.
Yes, I brought one. .

By the Ohaibman :
Q. Who was it from ? — A. That is the letter that I told you was
down in the other committee-room.
Q. Who was that from t — A. It was from General Foster.

By Mr. Wilson:
Q. Well, did you bring any others from anybody elset — A. No, sir.
Q. Did you bring any papers of any kind t — ^A. I brought my diary.
Q. When was that diary made !— A. 1872.
Q. Have you that diary with you now t— A. No, sir.
Q. Where is it? — A. It is at my house.

By the Chaibman:
Q. That is the same book you have been referring to t— A. Yes.

By Mr. Fosteb :
Q. At your house in this city t — A. Yes.

By Mr. Wilson :
Q. Will yon produc^ that and let the committee have itf — ^A. Yes.
Q. You say that was made in 1872 1 — A. Yes.



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THE LA ABBA SILVER BilNING COMPAKT. 725

The Ghaibman. I dont know that the committee wonld want to have
his diary pat in evidence.

Mr. Wilson. No ; I do not want to put it in evidence before I see it.
I mean prodnce it before the committee.

Mr. Lines. Are you entitled to see it f He has made no reference
to it.

Mr. Wilson. He said he nsed it right along.

The Chairman. He said he referred to his diary, and that would en-
title Judge Wilson to examine it.

Mr. Lines. Only as to the reference, though, would itf

The Chairman. Only as to a matter that refers to this inquiry. It
may have a thousand things in it.

Mr. Lines. You mean only the points brought out in this examina-
tion, of course.

By Mr. Wilson:

Q. You say that the diary was made in 1872 1 — A. Yes.

Q. And where did you keep that all thel^e years f — A. I kept it with
my other diaries. For the last twenty-three years I have kept a diary.

Q. Where did you keep ail these diaries T — A. I kept them in the Safe
Deposit Company.

Q. Where is the Safe Deposit Company ? — A. When I lived iu Brook-
lyn I kept them there, and when I was in Trenton I kept them in Tren-
ton, or my wife kept them for me. When we went away to the island
of Nantucket we took them with us.

By the Chaiman :

Q. You mean you kept them under your control all the timef — A. Yes.

Mr. Wilson. I would like to have him produce that diary so that we
could look at it.

Q. Have you visited the Mexican minister since you came here f — A.
No, sir.

Q- Who went with you to examine this deposition in the State De-
partment? — A. General Foster.

Q. You visited him, I suppose, i^nce you came to this city t — ^A. I
have been once to his residence.

Q. Has he been to yours? — A. Once he stopped at my house to take
me over to the State Department.

The Chairman. Judge Wilson, have you any question to ask this
witness in regard to his having been corrupted by the use of money or
promises to testify in this case f

Mr. Wilson. No, sir ; I have no questions to ask him on that subject

Mr. Lines. Mr. Chairman, will you now put the question f

The Chairman. Whether he has been f

Mr. Lines. Whether there has been any offer.

The Chairman. Of course I will put it if you desire it, but I would
not put it of my own motion. I must assume that the witness is testi-
fying without motive until the contrary appears.

Q. I will ask you, as it has been suggested, has any inducement been
held out to you or any promise of payment, or any consideration or re-
ward, for coming here to testify in this matter f — A. Yes.

Q. What is itt — A. From the Sergeant-at-Arms, saying that I will get
my mileage and $3 per diem.

Q. That is allf— A. That is all.

Q. Are you in need of that amount of money? — A. No, sir.

Q. Oould you leave your business to come here for the sake of testify-
ing for witness fees f-^ A. I would not have come for $50 a day.



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726 THE LA ABRA SILVER MINING COMPANY.

By Mr. Wilson:

Q. Then I will ask yon if yoa have bad any correspondenoe with any-
body iu relation to this case, other than Mr. Foster and Mr. Lines and
the Sergeant-at- Anns t — ^A. No, sir.

Q. Have not had any correspondence except with them f — ^A. Not at
aU.

Q. And I will ask yon how many letters in all yon have had from
them f — ^A. I had one telegram from Mr. Lines, dated New Orleans, I
think. I have hadr —

By the Chairman :

Q. When was thatf — A. That was before Ohristmas. I have had a
letter from General Foster, stating that he had been ont of the ooontry
into Mexico, and had not received my answer or telegram that I wonld
appear if summoned by the Sergeant-at- Arms. I had two or three tel-^
egrams from the Sergeant-at- Arms — yes, four — one in Trenton, telling me
that the committee were waiting for me to appear in reply to a tele-
gram of mine asking if I was ne^ed right away.

(At 2.15 the committee took a recess of half an hour, and upon re-
assembling Senator Dolph took the place of the chairman rMr. Morgan),
who was not present during the remainder of the session.)

By Mr. Wilson :

Q. Oaptain Dahlgren, what was the trouble between La Abra Com-
pany and the authorities f — A. O, I was not there, sir. I didnt know
anything about it.

Q. Well, you say in your examination in chief—

I know that there has been some trouble between the company and the anthoritiee

A. Yes, sir.

Q. What was it f — A. Well, that is all that I know about it
Mr. Foster. Where are you reading from, judge t
Mr. Wilson. I am reading from page 652.

The Witness. I had heard General Adams speak of some trouble
between the company and the authorities.

By Mr. Wilson:
Q. You heard General Adams speak of itf — A. Yes.
Q. Did you know nothing about it then f — A. No, sir; I was not there.
-It was several years before I came there.

Q. Well, Colonel Foster put this question to you —

Q. What I have read Is : ''The local aathorities of San Dimas claim that the Mexi-
can Government owns that property, and they have sold and leased some parte of it/'

That is a quotation from your deposition. Then he asks —

What did you testify f — ^A. I referred him to my correspondenoe with Judge Cipriano
Qniroz de la O.

Q. And Oolonel Foster says~

Q. We will come to that in answer to another question.— A. That was my reply. I
' referred him to my correspondence with that Judge.

A. Yes, sir.

Q. Where was that correspondence with that judge T — ^A. There it is.
[Exhibiting it.]

Q. That is itf— A. Yes.

Q. What page is thatf— A. Page 112.

Q- Of what f— A. Of Ex. Doc, first session Forty-ninth Congress,
5(0.274.



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THE LA ABBA SILVER MINING COMPANY. 727

Mr. FosTBB. He prodaced that correspondenoe on page 657 of his
testimony before the committee.

By Mr. Wilson:
Q. Well you say you referred him to your correspondence with that
judget — A. Yes.

Q. Then Colonel Foster asks you^

Q. Did yon know at that time, or do you know now, that the local aathorities of
San Dimas claim that the Mexican Government owned that property f — ^A. I know
that there has been some tronble between the company and the authorities.

A. Yes.

Q.* (Reading:)

I supposed that they were the local authorities; and when I asked permission of
the Jndge to take away such of the things as I wished, he sent me down a letter
which here is correct.

A. Welly as I say, all that thing is printed here — ^the correspondence
between the judge and myself, occupying several pages.

Q. Well, but you say you know there has been some trouble between
the company and the authorities T — A. Yes.

Q. I want to know what the trouble was. What was the trouble be-
tween the company and the authorities f — A. Each one claimed that
the fault was due to the other one.

Q. Well, what do you know about Granger having denounced this
Kosario minef — A. I don't know that; that Granger denounced.

Q. Well, you testified that he had denounced the Eosario mine. — A.
He had. and this man Galderoon had denounced some mines. I have
stated tnat the Array an was, one of the mines denounced.

Q. Well, you testified in your original deposition that Torres was
working the Eosario mine under a denouncement in the name of Gran-
ger. — A. Yes.

Q. Very well.

Mr. LiNBS. Now, Mr. Chairman, I object to the question of counsel in
that form. The witness has repuaiated the paper which purported to be
bis deposition before the commission and I do not think that that is the
proper form to secure an answer from him. He has answered yes in re-
sponse to a question which assumes that he did testify to something in
that deposition. He has repudiated it entirely.

By Mr. Wilson:

Q. I will put it in a different form, then. This deposition reports you
as having testified that Granger had denounced the Kosario mine and
it was being worked under that denouncement by Francisco Torres.
This deposition reports you as having testified to that as a fact. Was
that the fact f

Mr. Foster. That Torres claims to work it under a denouncement of
Mr. Granger; is that the construction t

Mr. Wilson. Oh, no.

Mr. FosTBB. Well, if you will read it we shall see.

By Mr. Wilson .
Q. The deposition which you repudiate contains this, which was read
to you by Colonel Foster:

I know, too. that a Mexican citizen, whose name is Francisco Torres, and who is
now, and has oeen for the past year and more, the occnpant of said haciendas and
mining property and machinery of said company, claims ownership of the same ; and
that he works the mines of claimant saccessifiilly, by '' Patio ^^ process, a part of them



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728 THE LA ABBA SILVER MINING COMPANT.

ander a " denonnoement " made of the ** Rosario'' mine in the name of one Qranger, an
Englishman ; and although the denouncement is said to legally cover only one of the
principal mines of said company, *'£1 Rosario/' which is probably the richest and
most valuable of them all, he, nevertheless, works some of the other mines of said
company in *' Bonanza," and claims to own them all, as he told me when I was there
but a few months ago.

Now, that is what the depositiou purports to make you say. — ^A. Tea.

Q. Well, I waiit to know now whether you dispute the accuracy of
that statemeutf — A. What page is thaiT

Q. That is page 653. Do you say that you did not testify to that
in that deposition? — A. Will you read me the answer!

Q. No; and I did not ask you to take that book simply to repeat
what is there. — A. Well, you are repeating what I said.

Q. I know : I am repeating a part of your deposition as it appears to
be. — A. Well, my answer now is what I said there.

Q. Yes; you take the book now. — A. Yes. [Beading:]

I believe I did. A mine in Mexico, when it is not worked, is subject to denoanoe-
ment, and I knew that people had denounced it ; but I don't think that they ever did
much of it, and if they did it was only with loss to themselves.

Q. I want to know now if you say you did not testify to what I have
read to you f — A. I have said so several times.

Q. To that particular part of it f — A. That is simply a part of that
testimony which purports to be my testimony.

Q. Oh, now, that is not the point at all, Mr. Dahlgren; I am calling
your attention to this particular part Did you testify to that before
Sisson ? — A. No ; I did not.

Q. You did not testify to that when your deposition was taken T — A.
In 1872 t

Q. Yes. — A. No, sir.

Q. Then why do you say, " I believe I did " T

Mr. FosTBB. Well, in answer to that question

By Mr. Wilson:
Q. Oh, hold on—

Did yon testify to anything as to the denonncemont of the Rosario mine by Gran-
ger f — ^A. I believe I did.

It is the answer to that point. Well, please lay your book down,
Mr. Dahlgren, and tell me what you did testify to before Sisson at the
time your deposition was taken in response to the question. — A. I did
not testify before Bisson. 1 have said that repeatedly.

Q. Well, that is merely a play on words. — A. Yes.

Q. At the time you gave this statement of your own, which you say
was taken down in rough notes A. Yes.

Q. State what you did say about that matter at that time. Just
leave that book for the present, please. What did you state T — A. I
said (pausing)

Q. We are awaiting your answer.— A. Yes. I can only repeat what
I said there, that '^I believe I did,'' and then J

Q. Hold on ; you have not answered my question. I ask what you
did state when the question was put to you and your testimony was
taken down in rough notes f What did you state f— A. I stated that
Francisco Torres was working the mine or mines spoken of here, and
that he did it under a denouncement which every one has a right to do
in Mexico if the mine is abandoned.

Q. So yon did state that Torres was working this under a deuounce-
?nentT — A. Yes.



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THE LA ABBA SILYEB MIKING COMPANY. 729

Q. Now, a denouncement by whom f Did yon state T — ^A. Oh, I do
not know whom.

Q. Well, did you state anything as to who did do itf — ^A. No, sir; I
did not.

Q. Can you remember you did nott — A. I can, bepanse I knew noth-
ing about who had denounced it except that it was an abandoned mine
and that he and Granger had tried to induce me to take hold of those
mines, and that also he and Galderoou had denounced the Arrayan,
belonging to the company, and then tried to induce Jauin to take hold
of it, and that neither of us took hold of it

Q. Do you mean to state that that is what you said down there when
your deposition was taken t — A. Yes.

Q. Well, you have said here in reply to (Jeneral Foster that you be-
lieved you did state that Granger had denounced that mine; is that cor-
rect or not; if it is not correct, I want you to make it correct. — A, No,
I did not say that Granger— —

Mr. Foster. The question was not to that effect; did he testify to
anything as to the denunciation T

By Mr. Wilson :

Q. Yes^ ^^did you testify as to anything as to the denouncement of
the Bosano mine by Granger," and you say, ''I believe I did.'^ — A. No;
I do not know that Granger denounced the mine, but that Francisco
Torres was working it.



Online LibraryUnited States. Congress. Senate. Committee on ForeCompilation of reports of Committee ... 1789-1901, First Congress, first session, to Fifty-sixth Congress, second session .. → online text (page 111 of 156)