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SUte fiiUy.

Ana. The feeling and prejudice of the authorities, both military and civil, and of
both the local and national authorities, at Tayoltita, and in the States of Durango
and Sinaloa, were very inimical to us. It was currently reported by the Mexican au-
thorities and citizens, and we were accused of meanly coming there for the purpose
of pnrloinine the silver and gold of Mexico with which to enrich the United States,
and finally of stealing the States of Durango and Sinaloa from Mexico, by annexation
of the same to the United States, and this feeling and prejudice soon took an active
hostile form, and our lives were threa^ned by both the citizens and the troops of the
legitimate Government of Mexico under President Juarez, its present Chief Magistrate:
those threats were frequently made, and we were in constant fear for our lives, ana
in pursuance of these threats, one of the employees working for said company, was
actually killed while coming up from Mazatlan with a train of mules for said company,
and we were finally driven off, and compelled to abandon our miniug operations, by
said authorities. The civil ofilcers of the legitimate Government of Mexico under
President Juarez also harassed and annoyed us, and interfered with the continuing
of the mining operations of said company. I was arrested by the order of the locu
magistrate or Judge of Tavoltita, whose official title, as I understood, was '* Jnez,''
and thrust into prison and sentenced by him to a fine of fifty dollars, and imprison-
ment for two months. I had no trial, nor even an examination, except bv him per-
sonally, and do not know for what I was arrested or imprisoned ; but I here state
positively that I bad not committed any act, crime, or offence against the laws or
people of Mexico, or any citizen or soldier of the same, nor against any of the authori-
ties, local or national. I was released through the personal influence of a Mr. Granger,
who had to promise payment of the said fine ; no good reason ever having been given
me for my arrest or release. I had frequently applied to the proper military and civil
authorities of Mexico, both in Sinaloa and Durango, for redress and protection against
the violence stated, but was rudely denied by both in every case, and could get neither:
and these threatened acts, and the acts of violence, were encouraged and connivea
at bv said authorities, if not actually instigated by them, which last I believe to be
the fact also. By reason of these facts it was very difficult to keep men there at work,
and the prosecution of the work was greatly hindered and delayed, and it finally be-
came utterly impossible to continue the mining operations of the company ; and I was
compelled, with my men, to give up the same entirely, and to abandon the mines and
all tne mining implements and property of the company, to save our lives. I cannot
state dates and names with any degree of certainty. Mexican names are hard for me
to remember. The Imperialist soldiers, and citizens sympathizing with their cause,
also threatened and interfered with us, for the reason, as they stated, that we were
in sympathy with the legitimate Government of Mexico under President Juarez.
Said interference occurred at various times during the whole progress of the work
while I was superintendent, and we were finally compelled to abandon the company's
mines and property, about March twentieth, eighteen hundred and sixty-eight.

The military authorities of the liberal Government of Mexico, or those acting

20 in that capacity, seized upon our mule trains on the road from Mazatlan to onr
mines in tne State of Dn range, loaded down with provisions and stores for the

use of the employees of said company, and they, the military, appropriated them to
their own use, upon the plea that they were not provided for, and must have them as
a military necessity.

Large numbers of our mules, and thousands of dollars worth of our stores and pro-
visions, were captured in this way by the said military, during the progress of the
war there.

And finding it little or no better at the close of the hostilities, indeed it was even
worse in the mines, for then they seemed to turn their whole attention to what they
called a purpose on onr part to annex Durango to the United States. And it was in
vain that we protested that we had no such intention.

The report nad become general, and we were so harassed that it was impossible to
continne our work with safety, as I have before stated.

The military under Maximilian frequently captured our mules and stores in the
same way, and shaaiefally abused our men, who were conducting the trains; they
assigned as a reason for so doing that we, the said company, and its employees, were



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338 THE LA ABBA SILYEB MINING COMPANY.

Republioans, and hostile to the interests of their so-called Imperial Goyemment, which
was true.

And so, between the two fires, we had no protection, neither of the contending par-
ties respecting onr rights nnder the law, but both of them robbing us. Large quan-
tities of silver ore was taken or stolen from our mines after we had taken it out, and
such were the threats against us, that we did not dare to go out and defend it, as we
would have been in great danger of losing our lives by so doing. The ores so taken
were the very richest, and those containing the largest amount of silver.

The captures or robberies of our mules and stores, of which I have spoken, ooonrred
at various times during the latter part of 1866, and the early part of 1867; that is,
the most of them occurred during the times stated, and pnnoipally by the liberal
authorities.

Question number eight. After that abandonment, what further was done by said
company or by you, as their superintendent in said mines?

Ans. Nothing by me, and nothing further by the company, so fiir as I know.

Question number nine. Why was nothing further done by you and by said com-
pany?

Ans. Because I did not dare to return and resume mining operations there. I waa,
and am satisfied that I could not do so with safety to the life of myself or my work-
men, or with safety to the property of said company, such was the hostile feelings or
prejudice against said company as citizens of the United States, and further prosecu-
tion by said company of mining operations there, both on the part of the citixens and
the local and national authorities of the Mexican Republic, and the violent acts re-
Bultin£[ from that feeling and prejudice, being encouraged and connived at bv said
authorities, as I have stated. And I returned to the State of New York, and advised
said company that it was useless to attempt any further working of said mines, and
gave them the facts above stated as my reason for that advice; and I understand that
said company was so advised by others, who were citizens of Mexico.

Question number ten. What was the work done by said company at said mines, and
being done by said company, through yon, as superintendent, at the time you were

compelled to abandon the mines, as above stated ?
21 Ans. Opening of the mines '* La Abra," excavating and constructing mill

races, building a mill house, erecting a ten-stamp mill and machinerv, building
store-houses, dwelling houses, blacksmitii shops, stables, ''patios," tanks and re-
duction works, getting out silver ore, and generally doing the requisite work and
constructing the requisite machinery and works preparatory to a thorough working ol
the said mines, and reduction of the ores taken from the same.

Question numbdr eleven. How much money was expended by said company in and
about the work which was done by them at said mines, and in the porchase and
erection of mills, storehouses, dwelling houses, shops, and other buildings, machin-
ery, mining implements, &c., which you have mentioned ? State fully, if you know.

Ans. Said ten-stamp mill was purchased in San Francisco, California, and it cost
said companv to buy it and place it on the ground at their said mines, over sixty
thousand dollars in gold ; said company expended on said mill-house and other things
pertaining thereto, over fifty thousand dollars in gold, and the precise amount ex-
pended by said company for mules, mining implements, mining stores, labor, and trans-
portation of provisions, stores, and other necessaries, in and for the opening of their
said mines, and construction of their mill races, river dams, tanks, reduction works,
&c., and erection of machinery, I do not know, but the same is not leas^ I believe, than
two hundred and seventy thousand dollars in gold, and may have been very much
more than that amount. The only mode of transporting their mill, machinery, pro-
visions, and materials, was on mules' backs, ana that was a veiy expensive and
tedious mode of transportation, and especially in that country, throueh those ter-
rible ** ca&ons '' and over the mountains, one hundred and sixty miles interior from
Mazatlan.

Question number twelve. What was the character of the mines " La Abra." belong-
ing to said company, as to the quantity and purity of the ores of the same T

Ans. Said mines were the richest silver mines I ever saw, and, as I believe, were
the richest silver mines in the State of Durango. The silver ore was abundant, and
as tested by myself, and by a Mr. Elder, a practical assayer, contained and yielded
from two hundred to fifteen hundred dollars per ton of pure silver, together with about
ten per cent, of gold.

Question number thirteen. What was the effect upon the interests, and especially
the stock of said company, by the forced abandonment of said company's mines and
property, for the reasons you have given ?

Ans. As the company was not allowed to continue its mining operations it was
virtually ruined, and when the fact and reasons of the forced abandonment of their
minea became known, the stock of the company became yalneless, and it coold not
have been disposed cc at any price, as I believe.



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THE LA ABBA SILVER MINING COMPANY. 339

Question number fourteen. From your knowledge of said mines and the condition
of the miniuff operations and workb of said company at said mines, how much silver,
in your opinion, could have been taken from said mines by said company, had the
operations of the company not been interfered with, and its employees nad been free
from tbe interruptions and molestations you have above detailed, and said company
had been allowed to work said mines to the present time f

Ans. That, of course, would have depended upon circumstances, but with no

22 more than ordinary accidents, and with as good weather as we had when I was
tbere, I should say the company could have taken out silver ores, in addition

those we had out at the time of said abandonment, and reduced them to silver to the
amount of at least one and one half millions of dollars, over and above the cost of
mining and reducing the ores. At the time of said abandonment, we had dug out,
and at the company's mill, I should say between six hundred and fifty and seven hun-
dred and fifty tons of silver ore, and we had dug out at the various mines, but not
yet taken to the mill, I should say two hundred and fifty tons more. Those ores would
have yielded the company, above the cost of reducing them to silver, in my opinion,
one million of dollars.

Question number fifteen. From your knowledge of the affairs and property of said
company, and especially of said mines, and of the effect of said abandonment upon
the interests of said company, what, in your opinion is the amount of the damage sus-
tained by said company, by reason of said forced abandonment of said mines and prop-
erty, as detailed by you f

Ans. I should think the dami^e would be the amount of money the company had
expended, with interest, including a fair allowance to its officers, and the value of the
ores which the company had out at the time of said abandonment, and what they
would ordinarily have realized from the mines from that time to this, above their ex-
penses. Considering such their damages, in my opinion the total damages sustained
by the company is not less than three millions of dollars.

Question number sixteen. Have you any interest, direct, contingent, or otherwise,
in the claim of said '' La Abra Silver Mining Company ** against the Bepublic of Mex-
ico, and to support which your testimony 1ms above been taken f

Ans. None wnatever of any kind or nature ; all my claims against said company
have been fully paid by them.

Question numoer seventeen. Are you the attorney or agent of said " La Abra Silver
Mining Company,'' or of any person having an interest in said claim f

Ans. I am not. I have no connection with them in any way^ and have had no busi-
ness relations with said company, except that of superintending their said mines, as
I have before stated ; and as that has long since been settled, I have no interest in
them, and have no feeling in the matter of this claim against Mexico, and no kind of
interest in its result, directly or indirectly.

Question number eighteen. What was the political condition of the Bepublic, or
United States of Mexico, at the time you were living there and superintending the
operations of *^ La Abra Silver Mining Company f "

Ans. The political condition of Mexico was at that time very bad ; it was in a state
of war. A civil war was at that time going on in Mexico, to some extent, and in
addition to that, Mexico was then invaaed by French troops, who were endeavor-
ing to support an Imperial Government under Maximilian.

Question number nineteen. What was the attitude of the said " La Abra Silver Min-
ing Company'' towards the then contending parties, or forces in Mexico f

Ans. The said Company was at all times loyal and faithful to the interests of the

legitimate Qovernment under President Juarez, the present Chief Magistrate of that

Bepublic. The company was, and is now^ composed of American citizens, and I can

not conceive of any other attitude for them than that of loyalty and faithful-

23 ness to President Juarez and the Bepublic. We were all anxious for the over-
throw of Maximillian, the expulsion of the French troops, and the re-establish-
ment of peace under President Juarez and the Bepublic.

Question number twenty. What just cause, if any, was there for the treatment re-
ceived by said company and their employees, from the authorities and citizens of
Mexico, as detailed by you t

Ans. None whatever, to my knowledge or belief; neither myself, nor said company,
nor any member or ojierative of the same, to my Knowledge or belief, ever molested
or interfered with any of the authorities of Mexico, local or national, civil or mili-
tary, nor any of the citizens of Mexico, nor disobeyed any of the laws of Mexico,
while I was so superintending there. The report circulated to the disparagement of
the company, that the company, or any member or person acting for the same, in-
tended to advocate or aid the annexation of Durango or Sinaloa to the United States
of America, had no foundation in fact, and there was not even a decent pretext fur
the molestation of, and interference with the company by the authorities and citizens
of Mexico, which I have mentioned.



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340 THE LA ABRA SILVER MINING COBfPANY.

Question nnmber twenty-one. How many men, in all, were employed by said com-
pany, dnring the time you snperin tended their said works at Tayoltita f

Ans. From thirty to one hundred and fifty employees in all ; sometimes the rainy
weather prevented our working a larger nnmber, and freqaently we were so harassed
by the citizens and authorities, as I have before stated, tnat we were compelled, for
weeks at a time, to keep only the smaller nnmber.

(Signed) Chas. H. Exall.

Subscribed and sworn to before me, this second day of December, A. D. 1869.
(Signed) GsoBOB Q. Barnard,

Justice Sup, Ckmrt

United States op America, State op New York,

City and County of New York, 88 :
George W. Hardie, 6f New Y6rk city, being publicly and duly sworn accord-
ing to law, to tell the truth, the whole tnith, and nothing but the truth, de-
poses and says as follows : I reside at 137 East Twenty-first street, in the city
and State of New York ; I know Charles H. Exall, who has made the foregoing
deposition ; that he is a credible witness, and his deposition is entitled to fall
faith and credit ; that I have no interest in the claim to which the foregoing
testimony of said Exall relates, and that I am not the agent or attorney of any
person having such interest.

(Signed,) G. W. Hardie.

Subscribed and sworn to before me this 2d day of Decembtr, A. D. IRGD.

(Signed,) GsoROE G. Barnard. ^

United States of America, State of New York,

City and County of Neto Yorhy 88 :
I, George G. Barnard, a justice of the supreme court of the State of New York, do
hereby certify that Charles H. Exall, whose deposition is herein above contained,
uttended before me on the 2d day of December, 1B69, at the county court-house, in
the city of New York, and was publicly and duly sworn by me, according to the laws
of the State of New York, to tell ^the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the
truth ; and tberoupon he deposed and testified, in answer to the foregoing qnes-
24 tions, as heroinbefore sot forth ; that said deposition was carefully read lo said
Charles H. Exall by mo, and that ho thereafter signed the same in my presence.
I do further certify that said deposition was taken by me in the city of New York,
in the State of New York, in the United States of America; that I am competent by
tbo laws of said State, and of the said United States to take depositions; that I have
no interest in the claim to which the testimony of said Charles H. Exall in said depo-
sition relates, and that I am not the agent or attorney of any person having such in-
terest.

I do further certify that said deposition was reduced to writing by Henry Snell, in
my presence, who has no interest, and is not the agent or attorney of any person hav-
ing an interest in the said claim.

And I do further certify that I do not know the said Charles H. Exall, but do know
George W. Hardie, who certifies below, upon oath, to the credibility of said Charles
H. Exall ; and I hereby certify to the credibility of said George W. Hardie.
(Signcil,) Georqe G. Barnard,

Justice Sup, Court.



Doc. No. 8.

In the matter of the claim for damages of La Ahra Silver Mining Company against the
United Sixties of Mexico under the convention between the United States of America and
th^ United Stites of Mexico, of Juty fourth, one thousand eight hundred and sixtg-eighty
to be submitted on the part of the United States of America to the oommissionera appointed
under that cotivention.

Depositioa of Alfred A. Green, a witness on the part and behalf of said La Abra Sil-
ver Mining Comi)any, taken before Hon. George G. Barnard, a Justice of the Su-
preme Court of the State of New York :

United States op America, State of New York,

City and County of New York, ss:

Alfred A. Green, being duly sworn according to law, deposes and says as followa,
to wit :

My name is Alfred A. Green ; my age is forly-one years; I was bom in the village
of Norton, in the province of New Brunswick, in British North America; my ooonpa-

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THE LA ABRA SILVER MINING COMPANY. 341

tion is that of a miner ; uy residence I claim to be at San Dimas, district of San
Dimas, in tbe State of Durango, in tbo United Btates of Mexico, although I am not
permitted to live there at present, having been irivon from the country; my family
are now residing at San Francisco, in California ; I am here in the city of New York,
transiently on business.

For the gieater part of the twenty years last past I have resided in tbe Bepablic of
Mexico, and during that time I have held several important commissions from the
State authorities of some of the Mexican States. In the year ld59, 1 was commis-
sioned jointly with Don Urbano Gomez, by General Of^azou, then the civil governor
of the State of Jalisco, and the military governor ot that State and the State of
Colima, to raise material aid for the cause of President Juarez, against the so-called
'* Church party'' of Mexico, and I rendered the State some service in that respect.
Afterwards, while residing at Mazatlan, in Mexico, I was appointed by tbe late Gen-
eral Patoni, who was then governor of the State of Durango, commissioner of emi-
gration for that State, and also by the governor of Sinaloa to the same position for
that State, and as such commissioner I went to California and induced a large mining
emigration to those two States, the emigrants investing in those two States, princi-
pally in silver mining, a largo amount of capital, as nearly as I could ascertain
25 about ten millions of dollars. Afterwanls, an<l sometime in the early part of
tbe year eighteen hundred and sixty-live, while residing in the State of Du-
rango, and after that State had been invaded by the so-called Imperialists, having
been taken prisoner at El Rosario by the traitor, Ueneral Lozado, and sent to Mazat-
Ian, with "permission to go seawanl,'' I went ** seaward" by the first steamer to Cal-
ifornia. About that time I was commissioned to assist General Gasparo Sanchez
Ocboa, in the Liberal cause, and especially in securing moral and matenal aid for the
Government of Mexico, under President Juarez. Through mv exertions the Monroe
League was organized at San Francisco, from which my brother. Colonel George M.
Green, an officer of the Mexican army, took sixty American officers and men, armed
and equipped, to Mexico, to assist the Liberal cause under President Juarez. In Octo-
ber, eighteen hundred and sixty-five, acting under the instructions of said commis-
sioner. General Gasparo Sanchez Ochoa, I went to the city of New York, and was a
part of the time occupied in writing and publishing a work entitled the '* Vindication
of Liberal Mexico." In December, eighteen huudred and sixty -seven, or January,
eighteen hundred and sixty-eight, I returned to Mexico, and from that time to the
l.ist of December, eighteen hundred and sixty-eight, I resided in the district of San
Dimas, in said State of Durango, and was engaged the principal part of that time in
mining operations at the mine "San Louis," in that district, and my occupation at
that time was mining. I then owned, and still own, twenty-two and one-halt twenty-
fourths {'Z2^*24) parts of that mine, and I am also largely interested in other mines m
that district.

I know the mines called *'La Abru," in the State of Durango. It is sitaated at
TayoUita, in tho same district of San Dimas. I also know **La Abra Silver Mining
Company," the company that owued and worked said mines **La Abra." I am well
acqnaint^Ml with some of its officers, and mayy of its stockholders. They are all, as
far as I know them, citizens of said United States of America. In January, February,
and Maroh, eighteen huudred and sixty-eijjht, I was frequently at said mines ** La
Abra." It is distant al>out two Spanish leagues from my said mine " San Louis." I
saw and knew what said " La Abra Silver Mining Company" had done and was do-
ing at its said mines ** La Abra." That company had eri'cted, constructed, and built,
and had in progress of erection, construction, and building, sheds, stables, dwelling-
houses for its employees, a stamp mill-house, re<luction worlcs, tanks, ** patios," black-
smith sho]»s, a ten stamp mill, and machinery for the same, also large mill races, and
was excavating, and had got out and was getting out a lar^e quantity of silver ores,
in short, was doing everything requisite to a working of said mines on a grand scale,
and in tho most effective manner. The company had a largo number of men in its
employ, though tho number was not uniform — sometimes more and sometimes less.
Charles H. Exall was the company's superintendent ut that time. I am well ac-
quainted with him; he is a citizen of the United Slates of America.
. That company was hindt-red and dolayeil in tho progress of its work, and was finally
driven off and compelle<i to abamlou its mines, ores, and property, by tbe acts of the
authoriti«-s of Mexico. In .January, eigbte«u hundred and sixty-eight, at San Dimas,
I heard some Mexiran ciiizi'us, in the prrsiMice of tho ** Juez" of that place, declare
that they wonhl kill or drivu away all the men of that company, and the threat was
applauded by th«» ** Juez." One of the men of that company was killed by
2G some Mexiran soldirrsof the Kepublicof Mexico, near ElToro, State of Sinaloa,



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 52 of 156)