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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there, in reading over their affidavits and looking them over, they would
find something that was misunderstood or something might be wrong
about them and have to commence and go it all over again, like enough.

Q. What steps did you take to make sure the witnesses understood
their depositions ! I am talking now of the Mexican witnesses.— A.
Well, because they were all interpreted to them. It was interpreted.

Q. Who did the interpretation ! — A. Mr. Danglada a good deal of
the time, and sometimes Mr. i^eua, and other times Governor Galan—
generally Peiia, and Governor Galan, I think, always. At least there
was always another interpreter besides my clerk. There was never an
affidavit taken there unless there were two interpreters.

Q. So that the correctness of the translation of an affidavit or the
reading of it did not depend solely upon your consulate interpreter!—
A« No, sir ; still he was my dependence.



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THE LA ABBA SILVER MINING COMPANY. 791

Q. Tes, I anderstaud. Are yoa acqaainted with Charles B. Dahl-
grenf — A. Yes, sir.

Q. When did you first become acquainted with him f — A. Well, I
can not tell exactly. It was a good while ago. It might have been in —
well, it was along abont th^t time — 1868 ; I mean about 1870. Prooably
it might be 1872. I can not tell what year he did come down there.
That was the time they were taking those affidavits. He was there
anyway, but I forget what time. I saw him at Mazatlan. I can not
tell what year he did come in.

Q. What official i)Osition did he hold t — A. Official position !

Q. Tes. — A. He said that he was appointed consul at Han Dimas.

Q. What were the limits of your consulate f — A. Well, it ran clear
over to Durango. I used to do business there and all around, up in
San Dimas where he was and all down as far as — down the coast quite
a ways.

Q. What business did Dahlgren do as consul at San Dimas f — ^A. I
do not know of any.

Q. Would you have known of any consular business officially that
was done by him at San Dimas if he had done any ? — A. I think I
should, sir.

Q. Do you know whether he ever received his exequator from the
Mexican Government f — A. I do not.

Q. Do you know whether he ever had any consulate seal ? — A. I think
not.

Q. Do you know whether he ever had any consulate stationery? — ^A.
I have understood

By the Chaibman:

Q. Don't say what you understood. I do not see the relevancy of
this between the two consuls there. Do you know that he was consul
there f — ^A. No. sir.

Q. Very well, that gives it

Mr. Kennedy. Well, if it please the chairman, in some leading
questions that were put in the redirect to Dahlgren while we were not
here— —

The Chairman. No, no; because you were here, or had full oppor-
tunity to read every word of the testimony.

Mr. Kennedy. Oh, they were read to me afterwards. I am only iden-
tifying a particular part of that long testimony.

Mr. Foster. It was a very brief re-examination.

The Chairman. Counsel on both sides have had a full and perfect
opportunity of hearing and of reading every word that any witness has
said, and if at any moment of time they were not present, the commit-
tee do not feel authorized to suspend the business merely to suit the
convenienc^of counsel. They have had full opportunity to go over this
record, as I say.

Mr. Kennedy. Well, Mr. Chairman, I admit what you say, and only
want to identify a particular portion of a very long examination. Now,
in the portion of Dahlgreif s testimony to which I have referred he
said that he knew of no reason why Adams's witnesses should not have
been examined before him, Dahlgren, as consul, and the object of
my questions to Mr. Sisson is to show that at that time Mr. Dahlgren
was not actually engaged as consul ; that he had not received his exe-
qnatur from the Mexican Government, so that he was without any offi-
cial recognition of his consular office from the Mexican authorities ;



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792 THE LA AB&A SILVEB MINING COMPANt.

that he had no consalate seal, and that he had informed this witness
that he did not even have consulate stationery.

The Chairman. Did yon ask him whether he had informed

Mr. Kennedy. The witness, I understand, said Dahlgren toM him
that he did not have any consulate stationery.

The Ghatbman. No. Did you ask Dahlgren the question whether
he Qver told this witness, Sisson, that he never had a sealt

Mr. Kennedy. No, sir.

The Chairman. Then you can not impeach him that way t

Mr. Foster. Besides it is not the way to prove tiiese fiMts; they are
a matter of official record.

The Chairman. It is totally immaterial.

Mr. Foster. They can be established in the Department of State.

By the Chairman:

Q. Were you at Dahlgren's place at San Dimas t — A. No, sir ; never.

Q. Never in your life?— A. No, sir.

Q. Well, how could you have any personal knowledge of what he did
do there t — A. Nothing except what he told me.

The Chairman. Well, of course, what he told this man would be
competent if it was a material matter and you had laid the predicate by
asking Dhalgren if he did not tell him so.

Mr. Kennedy. If it please you, my purpose is not to impeach Dahl-
gren, but to prove an independent fact — to show that there was a good
reason for Adams not taking his witnesses before Dahlgren.

The Chairman. Well, you can not show that by a man who never
was there and never saw the consulate seal and stationery. There are
better ways of getting it than that.

Mr. Kennedy. WeU, I surely can show what Dahlgren said to this
witness f

The Chairman. No: because you did not ask Dahlgren that question
with a view to impeach. If you had asked him that question he might
have answered that he did not have the exequator or seal, or did not
have any stationery, but you did not ask it of him. Just proceed,
please, without reference to that.

By Mr. Kennedy:

Q. Have you examined the original deposition of Dahlgren that is
now on file in the Department of State f — A. Yes, sir.

Q. When did you first see that document ! — A. When did I first see it t

Q. Yes ; I mean the 18 pages of which it is now composed f — ^A. It
was made out in my consulate.

Q. Now, will you state the circumstances attending t>he taking of that
deposition ; I mean the signing of it by Dalghren, his oath to its truth
so far as you are concerned f — A. Well, Mr. Dahlgren and Mr. Adams,
Mr. Pena^ and T think Governor 6alan,came up to the consalate for the
purpose of making out an affidavit.

By tlie Chairman :

Q. Now, do you mean an affidavit, Mr. Sisson, or a deposition f^ — A. I
do not mean an affidavit, I mean a aeposition.

Q. In this La Abra case ? — A. In this La Abra case. And they sat
down in the office there and went to writing.

Q. You say they went to writing. Who went to writing t — ^A. Mr.
Pena did the writing, the interpreter. Adams and Dalghren were dis*
cussing the 'matter.



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THE LA ABBA SILVER MINING COMPANY. 793

By Mr. Kennedy:

Q. What time of day did these gentlemen whom yon have named
oome to the consulate f — A. Oh, along in the morning some time. I can
not tell exactly what hour they did come.

Q. Well, now, proceed.— A. Well, Mr. Peua went to draw np the
paper, and they talked it over. I was oat and in the t oom while they
were at it, and finally it was finished and all written cat. I went in
there then and swore Mr. Dahlgren, and it was read over to him.

Q. You mean this identical deposition f — A. I mean this identical
deposition that is in the State Department today, or was yesterday.

By the Ghaibman:
Q. Yon examined it through, did yon f — A. I did. I swore him — ^the
usual form of oath that was attached there to it — and after it was all
through he signed it right there. Mr. Pena witnessed it right there,
^en I put my oath to it.

By Mr. Kennedy :

Q. That is, the certificate! — A; I mean my certificate. Then I signed
it and put the seal of office to that. Then I turned it over to Mr. Dan-
glado, who put the ribbons through it in the form you see. You see
how it is done there, put through and through, brought back, sealing-
waxed about the top of it, and he held it up while I put the stamp on
that sealing wax. Mr. Dahlgren, as soon as be signed it, went off.

Q. Did Mr. Dahlgren say anything about being in a hurry 1 — A. Yes,
sir.

Q. Did Mr. Dahlgren say anything in regard to a desire on his part
to go away before it was read to him t — A. Well, I can not say exactly
the words he said. He appeared to be in a hurry.

Q. Now, in order that I make no mistake in stating what Mr. Dahl-
gren said upon that point I would like to read to the witness an extract
firom Mr. Dahlgren's testimony.

By the Chairman :
Q. Abont how many f — A. Oh, qaite a nomber ; there may have been a dozen or
two dosen sheets, a large number oi sheets.

Mr. FosTBB. What is your object in reading this, Mr. Kennedy, to
the witness t

Mr. Kennedy. It is to ask the witness what he has to say in regard
to the statements I am about to read to him. I am sure if I undertook
to say what Dahlgren said there would naturally be some difference of
opinion between you and me.

Mr. FosTEB. If the chairman thinks it is proper, of course I have no
objectiop.

The Chairman. I think that is a proper way of examination.

Mr. Foster. It is the best way of getting at what Dahlgren said.

Mr. Kennedy. And the rule is, where there is a direct issue between
two witnesses, the only proper way is to read the exact words of one
witness to the other.

He said, ** I have finished.'' I then said, *< General Adams, allow me to read over
those papers." He said, "They are your answers as written down by my secretary,
and it is long ; it is not necessary ; have yon no confidence in me f " I said

That is, Dahlgren, who is talking.

" I wish to see those papers, and unless I do they can not go out of this room ; I
most see them." He then handed me the sheets, and I read them over. I then said,
** General Adams, those are not the answers as I gave them to yoa, sir, and I will not
allow that to pass for evidence." "Well," he said, " Scratch it out, or erase it, as



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794 THE LA ABBA SILVER MINING COMPANY.

you see fit.'' That was done, i^nd then I said, ^' Now those answers are satisfactory
to me and I will sign them/' and I did sign them. He then said, " That is not fit to
hand in as testimony, all scarred up in that manner." I said, *' Yon had no bnsineae
io write those answers in that way." And I said, ** Well, I am on the way to San
Lfirnas, and I haven't time to stay longer." I then called to Mr. Sisson, who wa^
consul at Mazatlan, while I was United States consul at Durango—

By Mr Foster :
Q. At that time?— A. At that time ; yes, sir. I said to Sisson, ** I will sign a blank
sheet of paper and put it in your possession as consul, as between two cousnls ; yon
are to transcribe these notes and retain the original and hand that signature with the
transcribed sheets ahead of it to General Adams as my testimony.'' Sisson said be
would do it. I then jumped on my mule and rode away, 170 miles back to San
Dimas.

Q. Kow, Mr. Sisson, what have you to say to that statement of
Dahlgren so far as it concerns you f — A. I can say that he signed uo
blank sheet at all there to my knowledge. What he signed was this
deposition of his. What he and Adams did and talked about — they
i;alked a great deal — I can not tell, but this was the result of their
work, was the making his disposition there.

Q. Now I read again to you.

By the Ohaibman :
Q. There is one part of that you have not answered. He states
there that he makes some declarations to you. What do you say aboat
"this!

By Mr. Kennedy :
Q. I will read that again to him :

" I will sign a blank sheet of paper and put it in your possession as consul, as be-
tween two consuls ; you are to transcribe these notes and retain the original and hand
that signature with the transcribed sheets ahead of it to General Adams as my testi-
mony.'' Sisson said he would do it.

Now, you have just said that Dahlgren never signed any blank sheet
of paper in your consulate to your knowledge, and the chairman in-
vites your attention to what Dahlgren says he said to you about tran-
scribing the notes and your promise to do that. Is that true f — A. No,
sir ; I don't recollect any such thing.

By the Chairman :

Q. No, but do you deny it ? — ^A. I do deny it i yes, sir.

Q. You say it is not true t — ^A. I do.

Q. In what respect is it untrue 1 — A. I don't recollect him telling
me any such thing, or doing any such thing, or agreeing to do any
such thing, for I did not do business in any such way.

Q. Do you say it is untrue in every respect and in every particular,
or only in part t — A. Bead it over again.

By Mr. Kennedy :
Q. (Reading) :

** I will sign a blank sheet of paper and put il in yoor possession as consol, as between
two consuls; you are to transcribe these notes and retain the original and hand that
signature with the transcribed sheets ahead of it to General Adams as my testimony."
Sisson said he would do it.

Now, the chairman asks whether you say that that is untrue in every
particular! — A. Well, I can not say in every particular. I can not swear
positively what he might have requested ; but I never agreed to do it,
that I will say, in that way, for I don't do business in that way at alL
No affida\it was ever taken there unless it was written out in full as a
deposition.



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THE LA ABBA SILVEK MINING COMPANY. 796

By the Ohaibman :

Q. Is that yoar reason for saying that Dahlgren has made a false
statement, that you never do business in that way, or do you state it
as your recollection in connection with this particular paper! — A. I state
that as a recollection.

-Q. In connection with this particular paper? — A. Yes.

Q. That he did not sign a blank sheet at all, but signed the deposi-
tion after it had been filled out and only after it had been filled out! —
A. That is what I say.

By Mr. Kennedy:
Q. Now, let me read you this. This question is put to Dahlgren:

Q. Did yon write anytliing in it except the signature at the bottom f— A. Nothing.

By the Chaieman:

Q. Wait one moment. I wish to ask him a question. This document
that you saw in the State Department was drawn up, you say, in Peiia's
handwriting? — A. Yes.

Q. Was that read over to Dahlgren in your presence! — A. Yes.

Q. Who read it to himf — A. Pena, I think, and I think I read some
of it myself.

Q. How did you both happen to be reading it! — A. You will see
there are corrections made after we got through, at the bottom. After
the affidavit

Mr. Kennedy. Deposition, call it.

The Witness. After the deposition, I mean, was read, there were
some clerical mistakes, and they were all recorded at the bottom after it
was through. That I recollect positively — my reading over and calling
his attention to that myself; had the deposition in my hand.

Q. Did you call his attention to the corrections before they were
made or after they were made f — A. After they were made.

Q. Did he make the corrections or did Pena make them t— A. They
both made them together. They were reading over at the same time.

Q. Then, if I understand you, you state that after the deposition had
been written out he and Pefia had a conversation with each other about
certain inaccuracies of statement? — A. Yes, sir.

Q. And thereupon Pena wrote at the bottom of the deposition a
statement of what those corrections were?— A. He wrote; put down
the pages; every page where those corrections could be found on,
whatever they were.

Q. And described the corrections in a note that he appended to the
body of the deposition t — A. The body of the deposition.

Q. And aft;er he finished that f — A. Then I took hold of it and
called Dahlgren's attention to that .

Q. Why did you do that t — ^A. To make it correct.

Q. Well, you say he and Pena were correcting it together f — A. Of
course they were.

Q. What had you to do with correcting a thing that Pena and the
witness were.correcting t — A. I wanted to see that it was correct.

Mr. Kennedy. That was his official business, Mr. Chairman.

The Ghaibman. !Not quite. I want to see if the witness understood
his corrections as well as the body of the statement.

Mr. Foster. If it was the witness is as competent to state it as you.

Mr. E[ennedy. Well, Mr. Chairman, I was speaking in regard to a
question which you asked.



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796 THE LA ABRA SILVER MINING COMPANY.

By the Chairman :

Q. Now, what necessity was there for yoar calling the attention of
Dahlgren to corrections that he and Pefia had alres^y made and that
PeQa had written into a note at the bottom of his deposition ; why did
you do that ? — A. Why, because it was perfectly natural for me to do it.

Q. Was that the only reason you had ? — A. I stood there when tbis
thing was corrected ; and now says I, ** Mr. Dahlgren, are these all cor-
rect?^

Q. Were the corrections correct t — A. Were the corrections correct!

Q. Now, that is all right. He said they were f — A. He said they were.

Q. And then he signed them and Mr. Pefia signed them ; now how
much of the body of that deposition, if any of it, did you read over
to Dahlgren ; that part preceding this note 1 — ^A. Well, sir, I can not
swear positively that I read any of it

Q. How much did you hear read to Dahlgren f — A. The whole of
it.

Q. Was it read consecutively to him f — ^A. It was read right along,
commencing at the beginning.

Q. Who read f — A. Mr. Pena, at my request.

Q. Did Dahlgren read it also f — A. I don^t think so ; he might have
read over part of it. I can not tell. I can not tell whether he did or
not He was there and they were looking over it together. It was
finished ; then my attention was called that it was finished.

Q. About how much time was occupied by Pena in reading this de-
position to Dahlgren ? — A. O, quite a while.

Q. Well, just say what it was; how much ? — A. I can not tell exactly.
I guess he was fully half an hour at it, if not more.

Q. Was Adama present during that time t — A. Yes, sir.

Q. Was he engaged in reading any part of this deposition to Dahl-
gren f — A. I do not think he was; he was listening.

Q. Was that the only draught of the deposition that was made out by
Pefia f — A. The only one that ever I saw.

Q. Were there any notes taken prior to that time by Pefia or any
other person while Dahlgren was being examined as a witness f — ^A.
Not in my presence.

Q. None but just this deposition t — A. What do you mean !

Q. Notes taken on sheets of paper or pieces of paper separate firom
this deposition containing the substance of Dahlgren's statement made
before that time? — A. Tes; I think the rough statement was made on
other paper.

Q. Other paper! — A. Other paper.

Q. Other papers. Now, who made that rough statement f — A. Mr.
Dahlgren, I suppose.

Q. You do not know ? — A. I do not know.

Q. How does it happen it was his handwriting ; how does it happen
that you do not know, if this examination was conducted before you as
consul and presiding magistrate on that occasion f — A. It ii^as. I do
not understand the question exactly.

Q. How does it happen that you do not know what those rough
notes contained if this examination was conducted before you as con-
sul or presiding magistrate on that occasion? — A. The examination
was not conducted before me. I had no more — that was not my
business. My business was there after they got through and the depo-
sition was ready ; then it was my business to look over it but not to
help them to fix it up.



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THE LA ABBA SILVER MINING COMPANY. 797

Q. That is your idea of your business t — A. That is as I understood it

Q. Yes, as yon understood it. Now, then, was Dahlgren sworn before
he was examined ? — A. Sworn before the affidavit was read to him t

Q. Was he sworn before he was examined before Peua and Adams
there 1 — A. Yes, sir.

Q. Before these rough notes were made was he sworn f — ^A. No, sir.

Q. Then he was not sworn before he was examined ; he was sworn
after he was examined and not before f — A. Before he was examined
by them.

Q. What do you mean by " examined by them ; ^ did they examine
him, or did you! — A. They got together and got this by themselves.
They got together and made up this deposition.

Q. Which one are you speaking of now t — A. The rough one. Then
it was taken from that, and then when they got through, and got it all
right to satisfy themselves, Mr. Pena copied it as it should be copied
to make a decent, respectable deposition of it.

Q. How do you know he copied itt — A. I saw him.

Q. How do you know he copied it correctly f — A. I do not know as
he did.

Q. Did you ever read these rough notes overt — A. No, sir.

Q. You do not know, then, whether he correctly copied it or not t —
A. No, sir.

Q. Well, your interference in the matter, or your official action in
the matter, rather, began alter the deposition had been put in shape,
copied out by Pena, read by Pena to Dahlgren, and Dahlgren sub-
scribed itt — A. Yes.

Q. That was the first knowledge that you had of the real contents of
that deposition t — A. Yes.

Q. Now, did you have any knowledge of what the real contents were
except from hearing read so much as you did hear read of this copy
that was made out by Peiia for Dahlgren's signature t — A. I heard that.

Q. That was all the knowledge yon had of what the man had sworn
tot — A. That was what my knowledge was, from hearing that deposi-
tion, the one that is filed in the Department.

Q. That is the only knowledge you had of his examination on that
occasion t — A. Yes.

Q. Was anybody there to cross-examine him in any way t — A. No.

Q. Mexico had no representative there t — A. No, sir.

Q. Who was this general you spoke of, or governor t— A. Governor
Galant

Q. Yes. — A. He was a lawyer.

Q. Who t — A. A Mexican educated in the United States, but a law-
yer and an editor.

Q. Well, was he representing anybody on that occasion t — A. No.

Q. He was nott — A. No.

Q. Why do you call him Governor Galan ; was he governor of Ma-
zatlan f — A. He was governor of Lower California at one time.

Q. At that time was he governor of anything t — ^A. No ; not governor
of anything.

Q. But he had been governor t — A. He had been governor.

Q. He had no connection with this business except as a mere by-
stander t — A. I do not know as he had. I do not know whether Adams
or Dahlgren — he used to do business for them — I do not know whether
he had anything to do with them or not, but he was there and he was a
lawyer and could speak English.

Q. What I want to get at is whether the Government of Mexico was
represented at all on that occasion t — A. No, sir ; I do not think it was.

S. Doc. 231, pt 2 52



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798 THE LA ABBA SILVER MINING COBIPANY.

Q. So tliis depositiou was made ap by Mr. Adams^ Mr. Pe&a, and Mr.
Dablgren ? — A. Yes, sir.

Q. And read in your hearing, andthat is all yon know! — A. That is
all I know about it.

Q. Then this witness was never examined and sworn before you as a
consul, he was sworn after his examination had been completed, made
up, and written out by Pefia, and read over to him and not before f — A
No; he was not sworn before, the affidavit — as I say before, this affi-
davit here in the Department, when he commenced to read that, then he
was sworn.

Q. So you, in certifying to that deposition, did not certify to any ex-
amination that was made before yon, but you certified to an agr^d
statement made up between Dahlgren, Adams, and Penaf — A. I certi-
fied to Dahlgren's statement, not Adams's and FeOa's statement ; it was
Dahlgren's.

Q. I said an agreed statement made up between them ? — A. No, no,
no. Now hold on. It was no agreed statement at all ; it was Dahfgren's
statement.

Q. Well, how do you know it was Dahlgren's statement unless yoa had
heard Dahlgren make the statement, and knew that Pena had correctly
copied it? — A. Well, I tell you, he swore to it there.

Q. Oh, that is very clear ; he made an affidavit to it ?— A. An affi-
davit to it, but I can not tell whether the affidavit was true or not, or
whether what he stated was true.

Q. And you did not at that time know anything of what Dahlgren had



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