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this document was read over by Pena immediately previous to his sign-
ing it f— A. Yes, sir.

Q. You have testified, have you not, that the examination took place
under the superintendence of General Adams and occupied two or three
hours, or some hours? — A. I don't know anything about that, and have
not testified so, that I know of.

Q. What have you testified to in regard to that! — A. That is, so far
as 1 was eoneerned ?

Q. Yes ; and their getting up the affidavits there. — A. As I testified
half a dozen times belbre, 1 did not take hold of it until the deposition
was all finished and when they got through with it.

Mr. Lines. I think affidavit is a better word for it.

Mr. Kennedy. No ; it has been known as a deposition.

Mr. Lines. Well, we are finding out now something about it, and it
strikes me as more of an affidavit than anything else. Let me ask, Mr.
Sisson, when Mr. Pefia read over the questions, which you considered
as propounding the questions, by you, did he not read over the an-
swers also f —A. Yea.

Q. He propounded the answers at the same time that he propounded
the questions, then I — A. Call it what you please.

By Mr. Fosteb :
Q. You continue to state-
That the foregoing testimony was given by him, and thereupon rednced to writing
by H. Diaz PeQa, in my presence.

Is that literally true f — A. I expect it is.
Q. Have not you stated that this deposition was copied from the



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THE LA ABBA SILVER MININQ COMPANY. 815

rough notes by Mr. Pefia, and then that you were called in to swear to
itf — A. Oh, I was in and out, and in there most of the time, and was
not out of sight, as you may say; was right within hearing, could hear
all that was going on ; I might have been called in for a moment or two.
Q. Do you continue to certify —

That the foregoing depositioD, when completed, was carefally read over by me to
said witness f

Is that truct — A. Bead over in my presence.
Q. That is not what I asked you —

That the foregoing deposition, when completed, was carefally read over by me to
said witness.

Is that true f — A. Well, I will not say it is literally. I say that I
considered it so ; that I stood there and the deposition was read over.
Q. That is not what you certified to. You certify —

That the foregoing deposition, when completed, was carefally read over by me to
said witness.

I again repeat the question. Was that true in factf — A. I can not
say it was all read by me, but it was read in my presence.

Q. I repeat the question again— Was that true in fact t — A. Well, I
have told you my answer.

The Chairman. He says he can not say ^ " can not say it was read
over to him by me."

The Witness. I consider it read over to me when it is read over by
the secretary.

Mr. Foster. It was not read over to him by the witness.

Mr. Kennedy. Mr. Chairman, I think that is a matter of argument
when it has been continued as long as this. The witness says that he
considers when his secretary or interpreter read the questions and an-
swers that that was a reading of the questions and answers by the wit-
ness. I suppose on the principle that what one does by another, accord-
ing to the legal maxim, he does himself.

Mr. Foster. The chairman can see, I think, my object in being par-
ticular on this point is to show the carelessness with which this whole
matter was done.

The Chairman. I understand that } but then he had stated. General
Foster

Mr. Foster. I am not pressing any further questions. I have com-
pleted that.

Tlie Chairman. Go ahead, then.

By Mr. Foster :
Q. You further certify —
And was by me corrected in every particular desired by him.

Did you make any corrections in the deposition yourself personally t —
A. liooked over this as I have stated

Q, I ask you whether you personally made any corrections and
re<luced them to writing! — A. No, no; I did no writing myself.

Mr. Kennedy. Now go on and finish your answer. — A. I say that I
personally looked over and called his attention to the corrections that
were macle in the deposition.

By Mr. Foster :
Q. You have testified, if I understood you correctly, that every word
in the deposition now in the State Department was read to him, Dahl«



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816 THE LA ABBA SILVER MINING COMPANY.

gren, before signing. Kow I want to direct your attention to the fact
that you have stated that you took twenty or twenty-five depositions,
and if I direct your attention to the fact that you have in fixing the
dates of the taking of these depositions made a mistake in your recol
lection of four years, and that you have fixed the time for the taking of
these depositions four years before the events themselves occurred, I
want to ask you whether you are now prepared to swear that every
word in the deposition now in the State Department was read to him,
Dahlgreu, before signing ?

Mr. Kennedy. Now, Mr. ChHirman

Mr. Foster. Wait until I get through.

Q. Is your memory so accurate, in view of these facts, that yon are
able to swear now that every word in the deposition now in the State
Department was read over before signing!

The Chairman. Now, wait a moment. Have you any objection to
that, Mr. Kennedy!

Mr. Kennedy. Yes, sir

The Chairman. State it.

Mr. Kennedy. On the ground that it is an argument with the wit-
ness and that the attempt is to draw an inference that because the wit-
ness, in fixing dates from memory of events twenty years ago, may have
been mistaken, that, therefore, he may have been mistaken in an en-
tirely different matter, to wit, whether the deposition, as a whole, was
read there by Pefia to Dahlgren. It is argument for summing up.

Mr. Foster. I ask this question because I think it is due to the wit-
ness to allow him to correct himself if he has inadvertently made a
declaration which he does not wish to stand in its present shape.

Mr. Kennedy. Mr. Chairman

The Chairman. Stop. 1 can not allow all this to go on the record.
It is getting too voluminous. The question is a sharp test of the wit-
ness's recollection as to what actually occurred and is a legitimate method
of examination to prove whether or not the certificate made at the time
accorded with the facts as he now remembers, and is his memory of the
facts different. The stenograj)her will read the question.

(The stenographer read the question as follows) :

Q. I want to ask you whether you are now prepared to 8wear that every word in
the depositiou uow in the State Department was read to him, Dahlgren, before sign-
ing.

The WiiNESS. Well, I ask the favor of the chairman one moment to
say this, if it is proper ; if it is not i)roper, why it need not be put down :
That I have made no preparation; that I have looked over and seen
nothing in regard to this, and if I have inadvertently made a mistake —
and when I found out that the treaty was not made until the 4th of
July, 1868, 1 have got the proceedings mixed up a little between the
first and second time of my arrival at Mazatlan — the dates thereof. It
was a good many years ago, and my attention not being called to it at
all, except with this one case, therefore I have no doubt but what I
have made some mistake in dates in going and coming and returning.

Mr. Foster. Can I ask him whether he has had a conversation with
Mr. Kennedy since the adjournment on this point!

The Chairman. I have no objection to that.

The Witness. No, sir.

By Mr. Foster :

Q. You have not talked with Mr. Kennedy on this point since we ad-
journed.



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THE LA ABRA SILVER MINING COMPANY. 817

By the Chairman :

Q. During the recess ; have you or have you not t — A. Have 1 1

Q. Yes. — A. Not particularly on this point.

Q. Now, Mr. Sisson, as we are giving you a chance, as you seem to
have become a little embarrassed and tangled in your statements about
dates, etc., make a full and (complete statemeut,cousecutively, in yonrown
way without any interruption by anybody. I would like to ask you the
question now to state all that occurred and just as itoccurred on that day
that you say Dahlgren signed this deposition and swore to it inyourpres-
ence. Now, gentlemen, don'tinterrupt him. Now, you have the whole
field before you and can make your own statement. — A. Well, my state-
ment is this : That on the morning of that day they came up there, Mr.
Dahlgren,General Adams, Mr. Pena, Mr. Galan. My secretary was there.
I tliink there were two or three more i>eople in the office, but 1 will not
be sure about that. They came in there with papers in their hands 5 said
they were going to make out a deposition, and they went to work at their
deposition and wrote a good while about it, as I have said before. While
they were doing that 1 did not pay much attention. I was around there,
most of the time in there but sometimes not; sometimes in the next room,
but so I could hear all the time everything that was going on and every-
thing that was said, and I told them when they got the deposition ready,
everything straightened up, I told them, " When you get it ready then we
will have it signed and swear to it" Then after a while Mr. Pena got
through copying and I went in and the whole thing was read over.
Mr. Dahlgren was sworn to the testimony and it was read over in my
presence, I standing right there and all standing right there, and he
signed it, and the moment he signed it he got on his mule and left.
Then the affidavit was attached to it. As soon as he signed it Mr. Peila
signed it as a witness. Then my affidavit was attached to it. Then
the ribbons were put in and seals, and all sealed up and fixed up right
there and then. It was not but a short time, a few minutes after Mr.
Dahlgren went away, that it was all fixed up and Mr. Adams took it
and left. That is just the true story about the thing.

Mr. BlENNEDY. Now, Mr. Chairman

The Chairman. Wait a moment now. The stenographer will read
that statement over.

(The stenographer read the answer as above.)

By the Chairman :

Q. Have you anything to add to that t— A. No, sir; that is my state-
ment.

The Chairman. That is all right. Well, gentlemen, we will close the
examination on that.

Mr. Foster. I want to ask him this question; that is, if you do not
ctinsider that closed by this : Whether he would be able to make a state-
ment as detailed as he has in reference to the twenty or twenty-five
other depositions that have been taken.

The Chairman. You can ask that to test his memory.

The Witness. I will if my attention is called to it probably as much
as this.

By Mr. Foster :

Q. Would you be able to swear that every word in each one of those

twenty or twenty-five depositions to which you have attached your

certificate and seal were the exact words used by the witnesses at that

time! — A. I will swear they were the exact words as interpreted by the



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818 THE LA ABRA SILVER MINING COMPANY.

interpeter and read over anywhere. I would swear that there ucTer
was an affidavit taken there bat what it was thoroughly read over to
the witness. If it was in Spanish ic was translated, and if in English
it was read over.

Q. That is not the point. — A. Well I am going to state that

Q. What I want to know is

Mr. Kennedy. If you say his answer is not responsive I suggest
that the question be read again.

The Chairman. The stenographer will read the question and answer.

(The stenographer read the question and answer as follows:)

Q. Would you be able to swear that every word in each one of those twenty or
twenty-five depositions to which you have attached yonr certificate and seal were the
exact w^ords used by the witnesses at that time f — A. I will swear they were theesoct
words as interpreted by the interpreter and read over anywhere. I would swear that
there never was an affidavit taken there but what it was thoronehly read over to the
witness. If it was in Spanish it was translated, and if in English it was read over.

Mr. Kennedy. Kow, Mr. Chairman, I say that appears to be respon-
sive.

Mr. Foster. I am not pressing it any further. If he thinks it is an
answer I am satisfied.

The Chairman. All right.

By Mr. Foster :

Q. I want to ask you something about the condition of the country
when you arrived there. 1 think you have it now, February, 1867 ; is
not that your la«t best memory f — A. I think that I left in 1866, and
that is the time I arrived there. I had to go to Panama and around a
good deal, and it took me a good deal of time to make the trip ; I had to
go 7,000 miles.

Q. Were the French in possession of any part of that country there
when you arrived f — A. Yes.

Q. What part of the country t — A. They were at Acapulco.

Q. I mean at or in the vicinity of Mazatlau ! — A. No, not when I ar-
rived. They had just left Mazatlan a short time before I arrived.
There were no French troops there.

Q. How long before you arrived had they left t— A. Oh, I think it
could not be more than six weeks or something like that, may be two
months ; I don't know, a short time before. They were at Acapulco, bat
they left.

Q. How long did they occupy Mazatlan, more or less !^-A. 1 can not
tell you.

Mr. Kennedy. He says he was not there.

The Witness. I was not thrre when the French occupied it, but I
heard the old story of it told over. I think, to the be^t of my knowl-
edge and belief, they were there a year very nearly; I would not say
exactly.

Q. What condition was the country left in on their abandonment !—
A. It was left in a i)retty bad condition. General Corona was the man
that was in power when I went there.

By Mr. Foster:

Q. Ue was a Mexican Republican general? — A. He was a Mexican
Republican general, and afterwards sent minister to Spain. The gen-
tleman acting governor was Governor Rubi.

Q. Yon have referred to some American mining companies that were
driven out during your residence in Mazatlan, I think t — A. Yes.



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THE LA ABBA SILVER MINING COMPANY. 819

Q. Yoa mentioned the Eosario and Carmen. That is one company,
as 1 understand it t — A. That was one company ; yes.

Q. Did you mention or can you mention any others t — ^A, Well, I
don't know as I can, that were forcibly driven out. Up to Oupala they
suffered a little, and I think they did quit there for awhile, and after
order was restored went back again, but I can not testify to any more
that were really driven out and quit altogether.

Q. Now, what do yon know about the Eosario and Carmen Company
being driven out f - A. Oh, I know by what the superintendent told me
and what some of the men interested in there told me.

Q. What did the superintendent tell you f — He told mo he was shot
and wounded very bad, and they took possession ; he was driven out
and bad to go away.

Q. Who did this shooting t^ A. The Mexicans.

Q. What Mexicans ; citizens or soldiers, or officials or authorities t—
A. It was one of the authorities, I believe.

Q. Did he mention the name of the authority that shot him f — A. I
don't know that he did. It was up in this neighborhood. I think it
was some of those connected with this La Abra or Dahlgren affair
there. I think Dahlgren had something to do with the man at one
time, but still I am not sure about it.

Q. Dahlgren was not there at the time it occurred t — A, No, he was
not there, but I say he had something to do with the same man, the
judge^ whatever you call him ; no, he was there afterwards.

Q. Well, is that all you know about the trouble that occasioned the
driving out of the Eosario and Carmen Company f — A. Oh, they made
a claim of it, and took depositions in regard to that.

Q. Took affidavits for what purpose! — A. Oh, claims against Mexico.

Q. They brought, a claim against Mexico, then t — A. Against the
Mexican Government, and took depositions the same as this.

Q. Do you know what the result of the presentation of that claim
was f — A. It was thrown out.

Q. The commis^tion rejected the claim t — A. Mr. Thornton rejected
that claim ; yes, sir.

Q. You have spoken of some companies which were, as you term it,
prestamoed f — A. Yes, sir.

Q. What do you mean by that! — A. Well, when a revolution starts,
of which there were several, the party that gets up the revolution gene-
rally starts for some place where there is a mine or something of that
kind to raise some money to carry on the war, and they will go and de-
wand a forced loan of the mine. They must give so much money right
there, and then, and It is forced out of them at the mouth of the musket.

Q. Can you name any of those companies that were prestamoed t —
A. could name one of the men. I forget now what they called his mine.
1 know where it was — a place called Cnpala.

Q. Who was the' man f — A. Mr. Best, the man who governed the
Belcher mine in Nevada there.

Q. What was the amount prestamoed? — A. I think about $500.

Q. Do you know who made the levy f — A. No, I do not; I don't know
who the commander-in-chief was then.

Q. Do you know whether he was an officer or chief of the Mexican
Government?— A. No; he was a filibuster or revolutionist, as you might
*all hina. It was paid to the revolutionists.

Q. Not to the organized Government! — A. Not to the regular army.

Q. Well, do you know whether the trouble that occasioned the driv-
•Jig out of Rosario and Carmen mine was the act of revolutionists or the



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820 THE LA ABBA SILYEB MININQ COMPAKT

Government t — A. No ; that waa a kind of private afbir among them
selves, the way that their depositions ran; trouble with the anthoritieb
there, and the aathorities drove them ont.

Q. Then it was a personal difficnlty between the aathorities and the
superintendent f — ^A. Well, it was the authorities. What I mean by
personal, it was not a revolutionary affair or anything of the kind. It
was between the authorities of the place, the judges and the owners of
the mine, or the Buperintendent of the mine, rather.

Q. Were you invited by the Sergeant-at-Arms to bring with yon cor-
respondence had between you and the State Department? — ^A. Tea.

Q. Have you brought it with yout — A. No, I did not, for I have not
got it; have not seen it for a long while ; don't know whether I left it in
Mexico or not.

Q. Did you receive a letter from the Department of State asking for
your resignation f — A. Yes, sir.

Q. Do you remember the date of that letter f — A. No ; I do not.

Q. Do you remember whether it was on the 2d of December, 1874, or
about that timet — A. Well, I can not tell whether it was 1874 or 1875.
It was along in the fall. It might be 1874 j I guess it was 1874 or 1875.

Q. When did you reply to that communication f — A. Bight off.

Q. Have you a copy of your reply f — A. No, sir; I wrote it right here
in this city.

Q. What is that answer? — A. I replied to it right here, I think.

Q. In this city f — A. Yes ; I think it was. I forget whether I replied
to it here or as soon as I got to New York, but it was within the next
day or two, any way.

Q. Were you here when you received the letter?— A. Yes.

By Mr. Kennedy :
Q. That is, in this country, you mean f
Mr. Foster. No.
The Witness. Bight here in Washington.

By Mr. Kennedy:
Q. When you received the letter? — A. When I received the letter
notifying me my resignation would be accepted ; yes.

By Mr. Fosteb :

Q. But >ou are not sure whether you replied to it here or in New
York t— A. I can not tell exactly which, but my impression is that I re-
plied to it in New York City. I think I was about ready to take the
tra»u when 1 got it.

Q. You mean New York Cityt — A. Yes.

Q. Did you receive a letter from the Department accepting your res-
ignation t — A. No, sir.

Q. You received no letter dated the 5th of December, 1874 1 — ^A. Well,
I am not sure about that now ; it appears to me that I did. But I would
not swear whether I did or did not.

Q. Why did you not bnng this correspondence with you t — A. For
the bimple reason that I didn't have it.

Q. Where is it f — A. I don't know, unless it is in Mazatlan.

Q. Did you make any search for it among your papers at home f — A.
Yes ; looked all over. It is a long time and I never brought anything
but particular private papers ; half of them left there ; everything bat
my firist appointment and the exequator, and one or two more documents
like that were lelt there.



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THE LA ABBA SILVER MINING COMPANY. 821

Q. Bat this correspondence took place while you were in the United
Stalest — A. Yes.

Q. If it is in existence, would not it be aroon^ your private papers at
home t — A. It can not be in existence, because I looked diligently for
it.

Mr. Kennedy. He says he went back to Mazatlau.

By Mr. Foster :

Q. You are satisfied, then, it is lost t — A. 1 am satisfied it is ; that is,
lost to me ; I can not find it.

Mr. Kennedy. You will want to have copies of the correspondence
between the State D^artment and this witness introduced in evidence f

Mr. Foster. Yes ; I will make application for them.

By Mr. Kennedy:

Q. Now, 1 want to ask you, as your attention has been called to va-
rious dates, such as the dates of the different visits of General Adams
at Mazatlan and the time when you first saw Dahl|,'ren and the time
when you first saw Exall — I wish to inquire whether prior to this exam-
ination you examined the records or any printed papers in this case for
the purpose of refreshing your recollection about the dates f — A. No,
sir ; I did not. I did not have a chance to see anything of them — have
not been where anything was.

Q. So that all the answers that you have given outside of the record
in regard to the dates of those various occurrences have been from your
present recollection purely f — A. From my recollection. If I find I am
mistaken, as I said before, I have got some things mixed up on return-
ing the second time there; I have got them mixed with the first time, I
think, about seeing Mr. Exall. I think that I arrived both times about
the same time of the year.

Q. That is, your first arrival and your return to Mazatlan after your
absence were both in the winter f — A. Both in the winter season.

Q. And how long apart f — A. About two years.

Q. Now, what reason have you, if any, for thinking that Oalau acted
as an attorney for Adams, an attorneyat-law, I mean, as distinguished
from an interpreter t — A. Mr. Galan was a lawyer, a general lawyer
for all Americans there, and was used to getting up affidavits and one
thing or another, and did a gooddeal of law business with different cor-
respondents in San Francisco, and I was thinking at one time that he
and Adams got up — had something to do with getting up — affidavits
or something, in short, outside of the claims business. I can not tell for
certain about it.

Q. Will you state whether Adams ever said to you, or Galan ever said
to yon, that Galan had been employed as attorney -at-law by Adams f —
A. No ; I don't know as I can.

Q. So that it is a mere impression ? — A. It is a mere impression that he
was consulting him on some law points.

Q. Were you outside of the consulate rooms at any time, during
the presence of Dahlgren and Adams and Pena, while the depositon in
question was in course of preparation? — A. No, sir; I don't think I
wavS out of hearing at all.

Mr. Kennedy. Now, Mr. Chairman, if I may have your attention a
moment. This witness has been asked by Mr. Foster to produce the
correspondence tourhing his resignation of his consular office between
the State Department and hiouself I would would like to ask the wit-
ness — as at the present moment, the correspondence not having been
produced, the questions of Mr. Fo.'ter may seem to cast a shadow on



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822 THE LA ABBA SILVER MINING COMPANY.

the witness— I woald lik a to ask the witness to state the circamstanoea
briefly ander which his resignation was requested and given.

The Chairman. Perhaps I had better say, Mr. Kennedy, that the
correspondence would not be evidence in this case unless it was pro-
duced, or its absence accounted for, and the witness furnished anoppor-
tuuity to explain it.

Mr. Foster. Well, Mr. Chairman, should we read his testimony to
you, I think you will see he laid the foundation for that.

Mr. E^NNEDY. Perhaps I ought to state to the chairman that Mr.
Foster did call for his correspondence in the subpoena of said witness
touching his resignation, and the witness has said in his cross-examina-



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 123 of 156)