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Q. Had he ever given you an account by letter of that event? — ^A. I
think not.

Q. Did not give you any account t— A. I think not.

Q. Had written you no letter on that subject) — A. I think not; I do
not remember any.

Q. Was any representation made to the Mexican Government, by
him or anybody else, of the fact of his having been imprisoned t — A.
Not by me or not to my knowledge.

S. Doc. 281, pt 2^ 12



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158 THE LA ABBA SILVER MINING COMPANY.

Q. Was this accusation that was brought agiunst him for the viola-
tion of any criminal law of Mexico t — A. I do not know that it was.

Q. Was it for breach of contract f — A. I have no knowledge.

Q. Was it for the non-payment of his hands ! — A. I do not recollect.

Q. Was it by attachment of his person by a judicial magistrate for
debt ! — A. I do not remember the particulars.

Q. You do not remember the particulars except he told you he was
imprisoned for two weeks? — A. He told me that he was. I have
seen

Q. Did you send any agent to ascertain the state of the facts f— A.
Not to my knowledge.

Q. Did anybody else send an agent to ascertain the state of the
facts t — A. Not to my knowledge.

Q. No step was taken ! — Not to my knowledge.

Q. Do you state as a matter of fact that Exall had never made any
explanation to you of bis imprisonment or alleged imprisonment f^ A.
I do not recollect.

Q. You don't state that he never did f — A. I do not recollect of any
such statement.

Q. And therefore you do not state that he never did t — A. I do not
state he never did. I do not recollect it. It does not come to my reeol-
lei^tion now.

Q. Have you stated all you know on the subject of ExalPs imprison-
ment!— A. All that I recollect now.

Q. Fave you read these copies of letters of Exall's in this book, Ex-
ecutive Document 274! — A. 1 think I have read all of them.

Q. You think you have read them allf — A. Yes, sir.

Q. Have you examined all these papers t — A. Let me see (examining
book). I have not read all the letters in this. I think I have just read
Exall's, probably.

Q. ExalVs letters to yonf — A. Yes, sir.

Q. Now is there any statement made by Exall in any of these letters
that you have read there that he contradicted at the time he made his
report to you f

Mr. Shellababgeb. Now, really Senator, that is a hard question.
Could anybody answer that !

Mr. McDonald. Twenty-one years after it occurred.

Mr. Shellababgeb. Had you not better point out the particalar
ones, because it is like putting a book at a man and asking him to ftx
anything in that.

The Ghaibman. He has stated he has read these letters of Exall in
this book and he has said he has heard the report of Exall, the particu-
lars of which he is not able to give. I wish to know if in that report
he made any statement that condicted with any statement in the letters.

Senator Bbown. Would it not be better to state the particular letters T

The Ghaibman. That might be better if any Senator wants to put it
so. I put it this way.

The Witness. What is the question t

By the Ghaibman:

Q. In that report that Exall made to you, that you have been testify-
ing about, did he state any fact that contradicted any statement in tbe
letters that he wrote to you ! — A. That I received!

Q. Any of these letters that .you see there before you that puriK>rt to
be written by him to youf — A. I observe here several letters whicli
appear to be written by Mr. Exall, but which I have no recollection of
receiving.



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THE LA ABRA SILYEB MINING COMPANT. 159

Q. Did he make any statement in that report that contradicted any
statement in these letters of Exall's which purport to be written to
yout^A. I do not know. That purport to be written to met

Q. Yes ; those letters before you.

Hr. Shrtj.ababqeb. You have a right now to take your time and
read the letters clear through.

The Chaibman. Very well^ the committee can wait.

By Mr. Bbown :

Q. You state you have read them. Is your memory retentive enough
to remember everything in themt — ^A. No; I can not remember all
these ; a lawyer might do it, or a man accustomed to these things ; but
as a farmer, who has had no knowledge of these things for twenty years,
1 could not expect to ; at least I am not able to go into the particulars
of them.

The Chaibman. You decline the eflbrt, then, do you, upon the advice
of counsel f

Mr. Brown. No, I would not decline the effort. I would take time.

The Witness. (After examining.) 1 will state this, that there are
statements made in some of these letters here that contradict, or are
in opposition to, his report to me, but I have no recollection of having
received these letters that were written contradictory to that report

By Senator Dolph :

Q. Now I understood you, in testifying to these letters, and you may
state whether that is true or not, that you could not recollect those letters
you received, but you acknowledged those, the dates of which had been
referred to in the letters to Bxall t — A. Yes, sir.

Q. And that is as far as you have gonet — A. Yes, sir.

Q. £ut do you not recollect any of them from recollection f — A. I do
not recollect all of them from recollection. There are some of these
things that are pointed out; there are some clauses in here that I recol-
lect, the fact that he sent the silver.

By the Chairman :

Q. Now, if I understand you, you have stated that there are some
statements in these letters that lie before you that are in conflict with
the statements that Exall made to you in the report of which you have
been speaking t — A. Either verbal or written report.

Q. Well, the report! — A. Yes, sir.

Q. There are some statements that are in conflict with those state
mentst Now point them out -A. I observe in a letter

Q. Give the date of it, please! — A. «< Hacienda La Abra, July 13,
1867." In the latter part of that letter he says :

The rainy eeasoD has set in, althongh a very mild one so far ; we had no rain of con-
sequence until 3d or 4th of this month ; the river is just high enongh to notice it.
Our dam holds good yet, but much of a rise in the river will wash it away. The ditch
at the upper end has been for some days overflowing : I fear before the season is
ihroagh tnat it will be nearly destroved, or at least rendered useless, until heavy re-
pairs are made. It is a poor piece or work.

The officials are getting daily more troublesome ; their demands are foolish and un-
just, but we have to do Uie best we can with them and take things as quietly as pos-
sible.

In a subsequent letter to that

Q. Let me ask you about that. Did he contradict that statement in
any way in the report he made to you f — ^A. No, but I am making a
statemait now; I have not done my answer.



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160 THE LA ABRA SILYEB HININO COMPAFr.

Q. Go on«-* A. Yoa will find in a letter dated October 6, at MazatlAD,
he says:

You ask for boundariM of minaa, haoiendA, eto. On this point I oan give yoa no
infoTmation, m these mfttten are, of oonne, to be found in the original titles, ud I
have no papers in referenoe to it. Beoently the Government has ordered that all hold-
ers and workers of mines mnst present to uie authorities the title deeds of said minee.
The prefect in San Dimas sent for the titles of the La Abra Co.'s mines. I informed
him that they were in New T. He save me I6nr months to prodace them. One mouth
of the time has passed. So yon wfll please send immediately all the titles to the
mines, or certified copies of them. Thev mnst be here in the speoifled time. By last
steamer I sent yon roll statement of hnsinessof hacienda; the mnnings, retoms,
and expenses «f the mill, % of oies^ ete. I neglected to add 40 tons of tierras, which
were mn throngh and have been in statement sent, bat was overlooked. I am sorry
not to be able to send yon statements of the months since. On my retom from Da-
rango I stopped at the hacienda so short a time before starting for this point that it
was imiKMsible for me to make it np in time for this mail.

By next steamer will send yon fmi statements of past months. The returns from
Durante were small. I tamed it over to £. P. 4b Co., as I was owing them. There
is no dilBcalties aboat aathorities, boundaries, or anything else conceming the mines
and hacienda, provided there is money in hand, and money must be sent. I nope I ha?e
urged this point sufficiently so that you may see fit to send me something to hold the



I do not recollect of reoeiTing that letter becaase it is likely that if
1 had the papers woold have been sent to him. The fact that in the
letter just previons he has said he was troubled with the oflSdalSy that
seems to be a kind of discrepancy. I do not recollect receiving that
letter.

Q. Well, do yon recollect receiving one before that in which he said
there was trouble with the officials t— A. Yes, I think that is acknowl-
edged.

Q. Well, did you not acknowledge the last one also, October 6 1 — ^A.
I do not know.

Mr. MoDoNALD. There is no letter of Garth's put in evidence later
than October 10.

The Ohaibman. The letter I refer to is the letter which he wrote, in
which he said Hhe officials aie getting more troublesome;" that is
Sunday, the 14th day of July.

Mr. McDonald. I refer to the letters of Garth that have been pot in
evidence. . The latest one put in evidence is October 10. If there are
any others we have not seen them ; if the attorneys of Mexico have
them, we would like to have them.

By theOHATTiMAN:

Q. Proceed to point out any other matters that are stated in the re-
port that Ezall made to you that is in conflict with any statement that
is contained in those letters that are before yoa. — ^A. I think, sir, that
the last letter I got from Mr. Bxall was dated August. I do not reool-
lect the receipt of later advices from him until he came to New T'ork.

Q. Now is that an answer to the question I have just asked yoa t — A^.
What was that question t

Q. Well, it is a very plain one. The secretary will read it to yoa.

^e stenographer read the question as follows:

Proceed to point ont any other matters that are stated in the report that Ezsill m&de
to yon that is iu conflict with any statement that is contained in those letters th&l*
are bf fore yon.

The Witness. Any other things in these letters f
The OHArBMAN. Well, the question is a very plain one. Bead it
again.



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THE LA ABBA SILVEB BONING COMPANT. 161

The stenographer read the queatioD as follows:

Proceed to point out any other matters^at are stated in the report that Exail made
to von that is in oopflSot with any statement that is contained in those letters that are
berore yon.

The Witness. (After examination-) In these letters of October 6 and
sabseqnently, which are claimed to be written by Mr. ExaU, he goes on to
say that he is greatly embarrassed for money, and wonld have to obtain
money if it was not sent. I do not recollect of receiving these letters.
I do not think I did, and his statements to me were not to the extent
that he says here. He may have been tronbled, the ores taming ont
so badly as they did, bat they were not anything like these letters. 1
am satisfied of that. These letters, as I say, I have no recollection of
receiving, of October 6 and of November 18, 1867, and of January 24,
1868.

By Senator Dolph:
Q. What did yon do with the letters yoa received from Mr. Exallf—
A. They were handed to the secretary and I sappose pat with the

Q. And shoald be with the papers of the company at I^ew York
wherever they are! — A. They would be if they are in existence ; ought
to be I shoald think if they had been taken care of. Bat I was never
the secretary of the company and had nothing to do with them.

By the Ohathman;

Q. Ton say the statements he made to you were entirely nnlike the
statements contained in those letters just referred to t — A. No, they did
not go to the same extent of those letters. They are very extreme.

Q. That is the statements he made to yon at the time he reported
from Mexico? — A. Yes ; that is to say his report was

Q. Then he made a statement to you of the condition of the ores and
the company at the time he reported t — A. He mast have made some
statement, the particulars of which I do not now recollect.

Q. How do you know that they did not go to the same extent his let-
ters went, unless you can recollect themf — A. I know they did not be-
cause they wonld have made a very decided impression upon my mind.

Q. Well, then, I will ask you about a letter that you wrote to him.
Or, first, before I do that, I wish to ask you at what time was it Exall
said he had been imprisoned t — A. I do not recollect the date, but it
was shortly befbre he left the country.

Q. How shortly t — A. I do not remember the time precisely, but it
was not long before.

Q. Well, about how long! — A. I could not say.

Q. Was it a month or two months t — A. It may be. It may have
been immediately after he claimed to have bc^n released. I do not re-
member about that — ^how long — whether he remained any considerable
time afterwards or not.

Q. All that you can recollect aboat it, then, is that he was imprisoned
by somebody for a period of two weeks as he stated ! — A. As he stated,
about that time, the particulars of which I do not know, if I ever knew.

By Senator Bbown:
Q. Did he say by somebody or by the Mexican authorities f~A. By
the authorities there.

By the Ohatbman;
Q. I understand you to say that you do not know whether it was by



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162 THE LA ABBA SILVER MINING COMPANY.

civil aathorities or military anthoritiesf — A. By the authorities he saicL
I do Dot know whether they were civil or military or political.

Q. Nor for what offenne? — A. Nor for what offense.

Q. Nor for what cause t — ^A. Nor for what cause, if there was any of-



Q. Now I notice a letter here that you wrote to him on the 10th day
of October, 1867, page 92. How long was it after that letter was written,
October 10, 1867, that Exall appesued in New York f— A. It was the
next spring, I think, but the date of his appearance in New York I
could not tell yon, the exact date ; but he came there in the spring or
early summer, I think. I do not know. I think probably that is the
last letter I wrote to Mr. Exall.

Q. October 10 f— A. Yes; at least it is printed here, and I have no
recollection of having written him.

Q. In that letter yon say :

We are deeply paiued to find that yoa are not well, and that, and are still withont
favorable results in the enterprise from which we all had saoh high hopes of snocess.

Do you remember stating that to him f — A. I see it stated here.
Q. Do you remember itt — A. Yes, sir ; I suppose I said it.
Q. (Beading:)

I am very sorry to say that it is not possible to aid yon from here, and that you
must rely entirely upon the resources of the mines and mill to keep* yon going and to -
relieve you of debts heretofore contracted.

Do you remember stating that to him f — A. Yes, sir.

Q. Then that truly represents the condition of your company in Mex-
ico at that time, the 10th of October! — A. I suppose so, as far as I
understood.

Q. According to your information f — ^A. Yes, sir.

Q. It certainly represents truly the fact that you did not intend to
furnish money f — A. I tried to make them understand all that from the
beginning.

Q. (Reading:)

It is not possible for us to direct any particular course for yon, bnt only to urge yon
to try and work along as well as you can, cutting down expenses and avoid embar-
rassing yourself with debts.

A. Yes, sir ; that is the tenor of it.
Q. (Beading:)

The Bank of California has again sent Col. D. Lagnel's draft here for ooUeotioiiy
bnt it was not possible to pay same, and it will have to retnm to Mexico, and we dc
hope yon will be able to make some satisfactory arrangement to pay it.

A. Yes, sir.

Q. Now, after writing him that letter, did you still expect that the
mine would be able to maintain itself without any sustenance from
homel — A. I still hoped so.

Q. Did you think so! — A. I believed so.

Q. Yoa believed it would t — A. I believed, under proper manage-
ment, it would.

Q. Well, under the management you had there t — ^A. Yes, I believtxl
so. I hoped so.

Q. You iHjlieved so ; that it would work itself out f — A. Yes, sir.

Q. Had not Exall been writiog to you for money and informed you
that he could not get along without it t — A. Well, the letter shows he
tried to negotiate a draft for $3,000 there.

Q. And failed to do itt — A. And failed to do it It was contrary to
my instructions to him when he started in to draw.



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THE LA ABBA SILVER MINING COMPANY. 163

Q. Your purpose was, then, of course, unless the mine was self sus-
taining, you would not try to sustain itf — A. Unless the mine was self-
sustaining so far as I was concerned J was not going to put my hand
in my pocket and pay drafts.

Q. Well, as to the company f— A. Well, I do not speak for anybody
but myself.

Q. What was the determination of the company about itt — A. That
was my determination.

Q. Was it the determination of the company about it f — A. I can not
8iiy what the determination was of anybody but myself.

Q. But you were the manager of the corporation. Was it the de-
termination of the corporation t — ^A. The other gentlemen were amply
able to furnish any amount of money they chose to do, but for myself
I had paid all the money I intended to.

Q. Do you know what the action of the corporation was f — A. After
Exall came away the thing was just dropped, and it was supposed the
thing was then done. I will read further.

Q. You may read all day if you choose. I have read all of that letter
of the 10th of October.

By Senator Dolph:
Q. That letter acknowledges the letter of the 5th of August t — A.
Yes; as I told him all the time. (Witness reads:)

We can not give you any aid from here. I would advise you to try and benefioiate
what ore ^ou have on hand, if it will pay to do so, and to cut down expenses to the
lowest pointy merely taking care of the interoHt and property of the company as best
yon can until further instructed, and in meantime give us complete account of ex-
penses, debts, and full balance-slieet of your books to latest period, and also give ns
your opinion in full of the prospects of the mines, values of the ores, cost of raising
and working, with yield of same as requested in former letters. From the reports
we get in the papers, we find that Americans and all foreigners will not be protected
in tneir persons and rights in that country, and that we may have to abandon our
property there. If so yon must take all necessary and legal measures, by protest and
otherwise, to secure our claim against the Government. Mr. Rice no doubt will be of
essential service to yon in any measure of this sort, and we would advise you to con-
sult freely with him. The directors of our company are trying to reorganize and to
raise money to pay off the debts, and to prosecute the work anew if possible, but I
am constrained to say with but little hope of success. Meantime, you must get out
all the means you can from the ores, cut down all expenses, keep out of debt, and do
what you can to protect and preserve the property of the company.

Q. Mr. Garth, do you know anything about an attempt to sell this
property after Mr. Exall returned to New York, some negotiations on
that subject! — A. There was no attempt on our part. A man I think
came to me, or some one of the directors, several times, talked about
buying the property, but there was nothing done. There was no nego-
tiation. We found out that he was of no account, and it was not worth
while to talk with him. There was nothing ever done.

By the Ohaibman:

Q. Now, it does not appear that you wrote to Mr. Exall between the
10th of August, 1867, and the 10th of October. Have you any recollec-
tion of writing to him between that interval of time! — A. I have not.
I do not k jow anything about that.

Q. You have no recollection of keeping up a correspondence with him
during that interval of time! — A. It may have been that I wrote by the
steamer, or I may have written him and it did not reach him. I com
monly wrote by the steamer.

Q. Do you remember writing to him between those timesl — A. I <Ih
not. I may have done so. I do not recollect.



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164 TdE LA ABRA SILVKE MIKIKG COMPANY.

Q. Well, yoa notifted him that yon had been informed tbroagh the
newspapers that there was likely to be Mexican interference pnt there
with the mining operations. You let the matter rest nntil tht 10th of
October before yon wrote any morel— A. Was not that the 10th day of
October that I read f

Q. No, sir; that was the 10th day of Angnst.

Mr. MoDoNAiJ). Mr. Chairman, he has not said he did not write be-
tween those periods. We would like to know, in the Arst place, whether
all the letters that the Mexican authorities have got have been pro
duced.

The Witness. I wrote a number of letters to Mr. Bartholow and Mr.
De Lagnel, of which I do not see copies here. I only see copies of some,
of all that I wrote to Exall.

By the Ohaibman:

Q. Well, I understand you do not remember to have written to Bxall
between the 10th of August and the 10th of October f— A. It don't oooor
to me now. If it is here it is true.

Q. Did you keep copies of the letters you wrote to him t — A. I think so.
There might have been some private letters or something of that sort
written to him or Mr. De LagneL

Q. No, letters relating to business t — ^A. I think so.

Q. Press copies t — A. I think so.

Q. Did yon feel any uneasiness about your property out there be-
tween the 10th of August and the 10th of October!— A. Oh, I had
other things to attend to; and, my dear sir, this was comparatively a
small matter.

Q. It was!— A. Yes.

Q. So you did not concern yourself about this little aflbir in Mexico! —
A. I did not worry myself a great deal about it.

Q. So you made no further inquiry as to whether the Mexicans were
taking steps to drive out the company or anything of that sortf^-A.
No; I did not send any messenger or anything of that sort Did not
bother with it.

Q. Why did you advise him that he ^< must take all necessary and
legal measures, by protest or otherwise, to secure our claim against the
Government f" — ^A. Well« I suppose if he was driven out from there that
there might be some time that there would be some treaty or negotia-
tion by which we probably might recover damages. *lt was in advance
of this Mixed Oommission or whatever you call it. What do you term
this Mexican and American Oommission f

Q. Gall it a Mixed Commission.— A. Mixed Commission, I did not
know that it was in existence at that time. I do not think it was, prob-
ably. If it was, it was not to my knowledge. I thought there might
be a time in the future when something of that sort might be done,
and it was in the matter, probably, of precaution or something of that
sort That is my present impression about it

Q. Tou did not know then that there was any negotiation going on
for a Mixed Commission to try claims between the people of the United
States and the people of Mexico, or the Government of the United States
and the Government of Mexico! — ^A. I do not think there was. If
there was a commission already in existence or proposed it was not
known to me. If it was I do not now recollect it It may have been m
existence or it may not; I do not know.

Q. It may have been immediately anticipated or may notf — ^A* Xt
may have been, I do not remember.



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THE LA ABRA SILVER MINING COBfPANT. 165

By Senator Bbown:
Q. Well, if I understond your positioD, it is that if the Mexican Gk>v-
enunent failed to pi-oteot your property yoa thought yoa woold have a
JQSt claim against it for indemnify and yoa desired to have the evidence
perpetoatedf — A. That is the view.

By tbe Chairman:

Q. NoWy if yoQ had never heard of the imprisonment of yonr agent,
Mr. Exall, before he made that report to yoa in New York, what reason
had yoa for sapposing that the Mexican Government bad any hostility
towaSrds yonr company t — A. Well, there was talk with Mr. Bartholow
and with Hardy, who had come back firom there, and other people who
had been employed at the mine had come back from there.

Q. What people f — ^A. Why,. Dr. Hardy, I. V. Hardy, and other peo-



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 25 of 156)