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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kve addressed to the superior authorities of the State f
^certain if the mining company of the Abra had any

were taken away by the authorities of the district, or
ly other burden, or subjected them to any exaction or
)oon as yon shall have completed these proceedings,
th the least possible delay, I beg that yon will send me
lat I may communicate the contents to the Minister of
may consult me as to any doubts or difficulties which
a yiew to their immediate solution.



Joes M. Hbrvandbz.

ace of the district of San Dimas. Office of the Prose*
ney of the Circuit Court of Durango.

by I addressed myself to you, requesting that you would
mity with the orders of the Minister of Relations, re-
ne which I gave yon the fnlleHt instructions, and twu
ithout my having received the proceedings from that
^pensable that you will be pleased to notity me imme-
which this matter stands, and, if already concluded,
ments in the case to me at once, in order that I may
the Ministry.

o that tribunal, in consequeuce of new supreme orden
ting that other measures may be adopted, necessary tc
ubhc against the claims which have been preferred by
3 that you will be pleased, at once, ami without delay,
ition :

itate, with all formality, whether it is true that, being
dams, and other foreigners who accompanied him, ap-



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THB LA ABRA SILVER HINIKa COMPANT. 429

plied to him. Judge Milan, asldoff bim to receive the depositioiM of eaeh witnesses as
might present themselTe^ to testify to the flMts upon wnioh the Abra Mining Com- '
pany base their daim. If it is trae that he declined to receive those depositions, let
him state the oanse or motive of snch refusal, and relate all that took place on those
occasions, in elnoidation of the truth, as to the facts upon which it is pretended to
base the claim. .

If there were any witnesses formally summoned, or accidentally in attendance, who
saw all that took place between Judge Milan and Adams, they ^nll also be examined
about the same flMts.

2dly. How this refhsal on the part of Judse Milan, to receive the depositions he

had been requested to take, led to the extra-Judicial examination of certain witnesses,

among others, of Juan Francisco Gamboa, Jos^ Ma. Loaiza, and Matias Avalos. It

is of importance that you should cause those persons to be summoned, iu order

153 that eaon of them may testify, in due form, in what place, and by whom they
were extra-Judicially examined upon the matter of that refusal, as well as to

other facts upon which the Abra Mining Company base their claim. They must state
upon what terms they made their depositions, and whether they received any sum of
money, or any other compensation for malung the same. Ton will also ask them, if
they were in Masatlan in the month of May, 1870. If they appeared- or were taken
before the consul of the United States at that port, let them state for what purpose;
what were the (questions put to them, and what were their replies. Upon this point
yon will examine, in all due form, James Granger. And if you can ascertain that
other persons have left the place to go to Masatlan in the month of May, 1870, and
that they have appeared before the consul of the United States, it will be proper for
yon to examine those persons also. .

3dly. The principal facts which have given rise to these claims are, that the people,
as well as the authorities, made hostile oemonstrations against the company, and tnat
said authorities required the works to be carried on according as they thought proper
to direct ; that they had convoked the people and the laborers, requesting the latter
not to work on account of the company, and promising them to turn the mines over
to them, to be worked by them for their own benefit. So that you will endeavor to
examine some respectable residents, in order that they may state whether, in fact,
the people and the laborers ever entertained any such purpose ; whether the authori-
ties actually did forbid the laborers to work on account of the company, and if it be
true that Aquilino Calderon was driven from the mine of Del Cristo in consequence.
The witnesses will moreover be made to state what motive the authorities had for
making snch prohibition.

It is of great importance that C. Marcos Mora, who was the Judicial authority of
that district, and Guadalupe Soto, who was Judge at Tayoltita, be examined, in order
tliat they may state whether they have dictated, and issued the communications, a
copy of which accompanies this; it will be necessary for yon to examine some of the
residents, to ascertain if it be true that, in those years the mines called the ''Abra
mines" were attacked by the people, and what measures were adopted by the author-
ities for the suppression of those oisorders.

4ihlv. It is also important that you should find in the archives of that tribunal, the
data of a lawrait, between Guadalupe Soto and the companv. arising out of the appro-
priation, on the part of Soto, of one of the Abra mines, wuich suit the magistrate of
Tayoltita would take no cognizance of, and which, it is said, was decided by the au-
thorities of Durango in favor of the company ; if you can find the data of this litiga-
tion, you mav procure for me, evidence of the finu disposition of the case, and send it
to me with tne other documents ; if the suit has not Immu abjudicated, then you will
draw up a certificate, setting forth the condition in whicl^ the matter stands.

Yon will endeavor to ascertain from the residents, or laborers, if they know whether
Soto had been taking away any silver ore from any of the mines of the Abra ; how
many loads had been taken ; what was the quality of the ore ; by whose permission
or authority &k»to had taken away said ore, and if a permission to this efieot had been
granted to any of the employees of the company. These same anestions will be put
to Soto, requiring him to state whether said permission was verbal or in writing, and if
in writing, to show the document to yon ; said Soto will moreover be required to state
whatever he ma^ deem proper upon this point.

154 5thly. Ton will also endeavor to find out from some of the most respectable
residents, if they know the cause of Uie imprisonment of the American, Alft^

A. Green, by the order of D. Camilo Peres, and why he was expelled from the mines
•of San Luis.

6th] y. Ton will inform yourself, officially, at the bureau of the chief of the district,
whetker among those archives there is any evidence that in the month of July, 1866,
by agreement with, or by direction of the civil authority then existing, the com-
mandant, Dn. Jesus Yaldespino, imposed a loan of $1,200 upon the company of the
Abra; if this loan was covered in ; if the whole, or part of the amount, has been re-
turned ; and if Valdespino was authorised to impose ilie same.

S. Doc. 231, pt 2 29

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480 THE-LA-ABRA SILVER MINING GOMPAKT.

7ilily. It is said thai in a place oallod tho Toro, in the State of Sinaloa, and not
far distant ftom San Dimae, a certain indiyidnal named Grove, an employee of the
minin^^ company, was killed. Ton will be pleased, therefore, to address a letter of in-
struction to tho judge of that place, called Toro, in order that he may take the testi-
mony of witnesses, statins who attacked and killed Grove ; if thev had any military
character, and to which forces they belonged ; whether any mnles, or effects wers
taken from him ; and if measures were taken by any Jndge lor the punishment of the
culprits.

This same iavestigation will also serve to throw light upon the circumstances at-
tending the attack upon another member of the company, named Scott, or Scottie, at
a place also located in the yicinity of the mines, and who was driving a pack of mules
loaded with provisions for the company.

8thly. It is alleged that Mr. Exall, superintendent of this company, was imprisoned
at the mines ; yon will be pleased to find out if, in that tribunal, or in the bureau of
the supreme civil authority, there is any notice, or record of such arrest, and of the
reasons which caused it.

The minister of relations has ordered that this information shall be procured with
the greatest despatch ; as, also, with regard to the other proceedings; therefore, I
entreat yon, on mv part, that not a day may be lost in carrying out the same ; and,
also, that you will consult me in regard to any doubt or difficulties which may pre-



themselves ; and, finally, that on the whole being concluded, yon will forward
tlie same to me at once, to .which effect the tribunal of justice of the State has com-
municated the instmctions which I have entrusted to you by supreme order.
Independence and liberty.
DURANOO, Juljf 8, 1872.

(Signed) Joss Ma. Herrakdkz.

To the Jndge of the first instance of the district of San Dimas.

[The following is the copy of orders to the company by the Gefe and Judge Moi»
and Soto, referrSi to in the above instructions :]

Fiscal Department of the Circuit Court of Dnrango. Political Bureau of the Dis-
trict of San Dimas. This gefatnra having been informed that you have suspended
work at the mines, I tell yon that this is not the engagement you have entered into
with me ; therefore I think that yon do not value your word in anything ; neverthe-
less, if you do not desire to work yourselves, give permission to the people that
156 they may work the mines, because I am not responsible for the evil conse-
quences which may result from a people without work. Independence and re-



Sak Dimas, July 10, 1867.

(Signed) Mcs. Mora.

To the representatives of the minek at Tayoltita.

3d Conciliating Court of Tayoltita. This court has been informed, to its great dis-
pleasure, that yon have not deigned to reply to a comrounicatiou which was addressed
to you twenty-four hours liince. I therefore notify yon, to come to terms with the ope-
ratives about the' work, within two hours, and if no agreement is made by them, that
you vacate the mines, in order that they may lose no more time. Liberty and reform.

Tayoltita, July 5«*, 1867.

(Signed) Guadalupe Soto.

To the Superintendent of the Abra Mining Company, present.

2d Conciliating Court of Tayoltita. In consequence of the official conimonication
of yesterday, the 3d inst., received fix>m the gete politico of San Dimas, I notify you,
that if yon do not intend to continue working the Abra mines upon the system of
'* thirds,'' as formerly, that you forthwith vacate the mines, and allow the operativee
to work them for their own account, and that they may lose no more time. Liberty
and reform.

Tayoltita, July 4, 1887.

(Signed) GuADALrPB Soto.

To the Superintendent of the Abra Reducing Works.

Gefatnra Politico of the Department of San Dimas. This gofatura has learned,
with great displeasure, by your official commnnication, of the abuses being committed
by those Americans, who, after at first having agreed to pay the operatives all in
cash, afterwards promised to pay half and half, and a third time to pay them cue-
third. Ton will notify them, through your conrt, and by my order, that at least tbey
shall carry ont their last contract ; that is, that they shall pay them one-third in caafa,
and if not, that they give up the mines to the operatives, to be worked by Uiom aa



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THE LA ABBA SILVER MINING COMPANY. 431

066 1 they may, siuce the mining ordiDADcee do not provide that the^ shall be paid in
goods alone, nor will the Goyernment allow such abases, and I am tired of receiving
thoobands of complaints apon the same snbinct. Yon will fhmish the Amerioani at
the head of the company m this town, with a oopy of this oommanioation. Inde-
pendence and reform.

San Dimas, Jane 3d, 1867.

(Signed) M. Mora.

To GUADALUPB Soto, Judge Conoiliadifr of TayolUta,

The foregoing is a copy. (Signed) Hkrkandbk.

San DofAS, Julp 15, 1872.

Received the foregoing communication, with the accotupanyingcopy of that of the
Fiscal Department of the State, nnder date of the 8th instant. Let the proper ac-
knowledgment be made of the communication to which it refers, of the I4th of last
May. Let the measures requested be adopted. The first conciliatory Judge of first
instance, Cipriano Quiroz, of the O. of this district. It is thus provided, or-
156 dered, and signed by those of the associated bench. Cipriano Quiroz, of the
O., (one signature ;) A. £. Padilla, (one signature;) A. H. Rodriguez, (one sig-
nature.)

On the same day was cited and personally appeared Dofia Cecilia Jimenez, whom
I protest to know, and beiu^ of age, she was sworn to tell the truth, and before this
she was made acquainted with the points contained in her declaration, which appear
in the second paragraph of the foregoing official communication of the fiscal depart-
ment of the State, under date of the 14th of last May, and being fully cognizant of
the contents, she said that what was stated therein was correct, and that she corrob-
orated the same. Being asked who the workmen were from whom the Americans,
Adams and Dana, received depositions on the subject, in reference to ipjnries sus-
tained in the negotiations of Tayoltita, she replied that she knew of that transaction,
but that she did not remember the workmen ; that Dionisio Gatierrez may know the
names of the parties, because Mr. Adams was once in his house ; that this is all she
can say with truth. Tbis deposition having been read to her, she reasserted and cor-
roborated the same. Signed with me and the attesting witnesses. Cipriano Quiroz,
of the O., (one signature;) A. H. Rodriguez, (one signature;) A. Simon Coronado,
(one signature.^

Proceedings m continuation. — ^This is to show that, upon the fore^iog deposition
being presented to Delia Cecilia Jimenez to sign, she stated her inability to do so. I
note this fact, with attesting witnesses. Cipriano Quiroz, (one signature ;) A. E. Pa-
dilla, (one signature p A. Simon Coronado, (one signature.)

On the same date, inquiries having been made for the parties referred to in the fore-

»ing record, Messrs. Santiago Granger, Rafael Martin, Americans, Anastasia Milan,
nan Francisco Gamboa, J<^ M. L^aiza, Matias Avalos, M. Mo^^ and Guadalupe
Soto, whose depositions are to be taken, and in order to examine such other witnesses
as may be referred to by these deponents, it is placed on record that Martin is at San
Francisco, California: Gamboa and Loaiza in the district of San Ygnacio, State of
Sinaloa ; Soto and (Granger in tbe mining regions of San Vicente, in the same dis-
trict ; and as to Mora and Avalos, tbeir place of residence is not known; consequently
it was ordered that the investigation, in regard to the latter, should be continued,
and requisitions will be served, one on the tribunal of the first instance of San Ygna-
cio, enclosing all the papers relating to the depositions to be taken from all that may
be found within said Jurisdiction, and another in the shape of an order to San Vicente,
in order that the magistrate of that place, who resides in that vicinity, may take
measures to cause the appearance at the place under my charge of the abovemen-
tioned Soto and Grantor, causing to be issued, in the meanwhile, the other citations
concerning the investigations that are to be made. Let these proceedings be commu-
nicated to the attorney of the Government, and to the Supreme Tribuiud of Justice
of the State, for their information and final decision. The conciliatory tribunal, and
that of the first instance, who sign this, thus decided, ordered, and signed before the
attesting witnesses. Quiroz, of the O., (one signature;) A. £. Padilla, (one signa-
ture ;) A. Jos^ Maria Martinez, (one signature.)

San Dimas, July 16, 1872.

In consequence of the deposition of Dofia Cecilia Jimenez, a summons was sent to D.

Dionisio Ghitierrez, but he could not be found in this place in consequence of his

167 being absent; it is also recorded that a reply was sent to the fiscal department,

in reply to the note received ; and the papers in the foregoing proceedings were

enclosed separately. The requisitions mentioned in them were also issued. I record

the same lor evidence, before my attesting witnesses. (Signed) Qniroe, of the O.,

A. E. Padilla, A. Job6 Mai^a Martinez.



foi
ui



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432 THE lA ABBA SILVER MININq COMFAKT.

San Dimasy Joly 17, 1873. — HaTiDg proceeded with the inyestigfttion leUtiTe to the
killing of James Soto, bv the Americao, James Petiller, a sommoiis was served upon
Martin Delgado, who, toe oonrt was informed, might be able to give a deposition in
regard to this incident, and on making his appearance he was formally sworn.

Previous to this he was asked what he knew of this oooorrenoe, and he said that in
the year of the invasion of Dnrango by the French^ he being a magistrate in that min-
ing district, there took place theoccnrrenoe of the killing, with a pistol shot, of the Mex<
ioan, Teodoro Soto, (not James Soto, as above stated, ) by the American, named James
Petiller, of which act the deponent took Judicial cognisance, and he drew up the cor*
responmng verbal process, which being concluded^ ne forwarded the same, with an
account of the other proceedings appertaining to his functions, together with the cul-
prit, Petiller, to the second crimnal tribunal of Durango, then in charge of the licen-
tiate, Lorencio Sencunegui. That from what took place during the proceedings in
the case, he remembers what foUows as the principal points. The deponent, in his
capacity as magistrate, accompanied by witnesses, went to the place where the body
of Teodoro Soto lay, and having inquired of James Petiller, who had killed Soto, he
replied that he knew him to be Teodoro Soto, and he was aware of the cause why it
had been ^d that he had killed him. These proceedings having been concluded with
the inquest and identification of the body or the dead man, it was proved that Pe-
tiller was the assassin who had fired the shot at the other, while drunk, and that in
consequence of carelessness on the part of the guard, he made his escape, but was inn
mediately re-arrested and imprisoned, until he was sent on to Durango ; that he
knows nothing of the results which followed in this case ; that Petiller was the per^
son who superintended the works of the BaUnos miiM, on account of the owners of
said mine, andofthatof theCandelario; thatthe witnesses to the aforesaid aasassina-
tion were several, because it took place at a ball, but he does not remember the
names of those present ; that the witnesses in attendance at the inauest held upou
the body were D. Guadalupe Martinez and D. Tomaso Rodriguez ; tnat this is all he
can sayiwith truth. On this deposition being read to him, he re-asserted the same
and corroborated it. He signed before me and my attesting witnesses, the deponent
adding that he was a single man j aged forty-four years ; a merchant by proiession,
and of this neighborhood. I certify - ^ signed,) Cipriano Qniros de la O., Martin Del-
gado, A. E. PadiUa, a Jo86 Ma. Martinez.

On this same occasion, there were summoned the citizens Guadalupe Martinez and
Tomaso Rodriguez, the witnesses alluded to in the foregoing depositions. I make
note of the same for evidence.

San Dxmab, Juh l^i 1S72.

Present: Guadalupe Martinez, mentioned in the foregoing deposition of Martin

Dele^ado, whom I protest to know, being duly sworn to tell the truth; prior to

this formality, he was examined in relation to the deposition of Martin Delegado, and

he said that the statements of that gentleman are correct in every part. As

158 the deponent, Martinez, was one of the witnesses in attendance at the inqaest

over the body of Teodoro Soto, who was killed by the American, James Petdller,

which is all that he can say with truth. Upon this deposition being read to him he

re-asserted the same, and corroborated it, adding that his name is the same as above

stated; that he is a married man; over seventy years of age ; by calling a merchant,

and a resident of this district.

Signed before me and attesting witnesses. I testify—Cipriano Quiroz de la O., A.
£. Pedilla, A. Albino Tonero.

At San DiMA8,.A»Zy 15, ISTL

Present : The citizen, Tomasio Rodriguez, of age, whom I protest to know, who b^
ing duly sworn to tell the truth in regard to what he might know, in answer to the
questions which should be put to him during these proceedings, he was interrogated as
follows :

Were jrou present at the killing of Teodoro Soto f He replied that be witnessed the
act in this manner : he was at a mnsical party, and by his side was seated the afore-
said Teodoro; the American, James Petiller, came to the ball, -and entered with a
pistol in his hand, crying '* Hurrah for Mextoof* and going towards Teodoro, he fir«d
directly at him, from which shot he died in a few hours. Petiller was a little typay ;
that the latter was employed in the mine of Bolefios, in the establishment of this min-
ing district, and not oftheAbra of TayoUUa,

Being asked what was the cause of that act he replied : that at the time of the oom-
mission of the act none existed ; but that he understood from Teodoro himself^ when
they were carrying him wounded to his house, the origin of the difficulty aroee from
the fact that Petiller hod ordered Teodoro to carry some tools to his wife, and that in
consequence of the conduct of the latter, Petiller was much displeased against Teo-
doro ; what for he does not know ; that the offender was arrested and sent to Duranso
and that he does not know what was the end of the affiair. That is all ho can say



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THE LA ABBA SILYEB MININO COHPANT. 433

with tmthy addiogtbat bis name is tbe same as above stated ; tbat be is a single man ;
tbirty years of age ; blacksmitb by trade, and a resident Of this mining district. On
this deposition l^ing read to him, be afi&rmed tbe same and corroborated it.

Signed before me and tbose of my associates. (Signed) Quiroz de la O., A. £. Po-
dillo, A. Jo66 Ma. Martinez.

Bbpubuc of Mkxico.

Political Bureau of tbe District of San Dimas :
Tbia bnrean baving been made acquainted witb tbe contents of vonr note of tbe 18tb
oflast montbf I have to say to you, tliat baving searched the arakives of trib bnrean,
under my charge, for some data relative to tbe loan of $1/200, wbicb tbe owners of
tbe ** Abra " assert to bave been imposed upon tbem in tbe year 1866, by tbe officer
in command, Jesus Valdespino, by agreement witb the political autbority of tbis dis-
trict in said year, 1 bave found a document wbicb reads verbally as follows :

**£. B. United Brigades — Brigade of Dnrango— 2<1 Section — ^Teniente Colonel-in-
Cbief.

Tbe extreme want wbicb tbe force nnder my command issnffering, witb wbicb I bave
received snperior orders to come into tbis district, to which purpose, and in order to
sustain said force, I have had conferred upon me sufficient powers to procure means
for tbe maintenance of tbe same, and of the other forces which I am to organize ; but
in view of existing circnmstances, and being also satisfied that tbe district cannot,
withont mnch inconvenience, afford tbe means which I find it indispensable
159 to procnre, at all hazards, in fulfillment of tbe duties I have to discbarge, with
this object in view, therefore, and in order tbat tbe people hereabouts may not
suffer greater burdens than would be occasioned by my rimaiuing over night, I have
determined to take up my march as soon as possible; and in order to accomplish this, I
want means, and I confine myself to what is absolntely necessary ; thus then acting
in conformity with the powers conferred upon me, and in consideration of what has
been stated above, you will levy upon tbose persons in best circumstances, of this dis-
trict, and of the villages and estates appertaining to the same, the sum of ($1,200)
ofie thousand and two himdreddoUarSf which they will pay within the space of four days
counting from to-day. I should desire the political autbority not to levy any contri-
bution or loan, and it is painful to me to proceed in this manner, although compelled
by the stringent character of my duty. Although determined to withdraw, I wish
every good to these people. I strongly urge upon yon that the collection of tbis sum
shall be ma<le with the greatest possible care and equality, and of accord with a
commission which yon will name from among those that are best informed, which
commission shall be presided over by the head of that bureau. I avail myself of tbis
opiMirtunity to tender you the assurances of my consideration and distinguished re-



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 70 of 156)