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in the plea of insanity, which in China constitutes no defense to pun. ishment of crime.

The acquittal of Chou Han of the charge of circulating vile placards is surprising in view of the notoriety that he has attained. It is believed that the Imperial Government did not punish him severely, for fear of trouble in Hunan. Still, the disposition of the case is calculated to deter others from committing like crimes, and is a concessior to foreign wishes. I have, etc.,


Afr. Denby to Mr. Blaine.

No. 1540.]


Peking, June 6, 1892. (Received July 14.) SIR: As the Presbyterian Mission at Chinanfu has for some years been a source of peculiar interest to the Department and this legation, I have the honor to report now that the affairs thereof have been for several months most happily and peacefully conducted.

The missionaries have nearly completed their hospital, which is located on the newly acquired ground. They propose to throw the building open to all visitors and to entertain all comers for three days.

The taotai and local officials have been prompt to settle a dispute which arose over he right of way. Rev. Gilbert Reid has earnestly requested that the thanks of this legation to the officials be transmitted through the foreign office. I have complied with his request. I have, etc.,


Mr. Denby to Mr. Blainc.

No. 1512.)


Peking, June 17, 1892. (Received July 23.) SIR: I bave the honor to inclose the translation of a communication received from the foreign office the 13th instant, relating to the Chinese exclusion legislation of Congress, and a copy of my reply thereto.

As requested, I wired you the 17th instant as follows: Foreign office desires to know if President approved act continuing restriction of Chinese ten years.

The communication of the foreign office evidently refers primarily to the Geary bill. I learn from the newspapers that a conference committee of the two Houses of Congress substituted a Senate bill for the Geary bill, but whether this substitute has become a law I do not know.

I request that a copy of all recent acts affecting the question of Chinese immigration be sent to me. I have, etc.,


[Inclosure 1 in No. 1542.)

The tsung-li yamên to Vr. Denby.


Peking, June 13, 1892. Upon the 10th June, instant, the prince and ministers had the honor to receive from his excellency Tsui, Chinese minister at Washington, a copy of a restriction act against Chinese, presented in the House of Representatives on (the 8th day, third moon, present year of Kuang Hsü) the 4th of April, 1892, consisting of fourteen articles, the provisions of which are extreme in their rigor and very injurious to the good nane of the United States Government.

The provisions of article 14 are to effect that if the provisions of existing treaties between China and the United States are in tlie least at variance with the terms of the bill, they are to be entirely abrogated. The yamên can not but regard the bill in a strange and frightful light.

Friendly relations have existed between China and the United States for several teus of years, but the action now taken by the representatives of Congress in the matter of the restriction of Chinese laborers evinces a desire to destroy and set aside the provisions of the treaties that have existed during these years.

In the Senato a bill has been discussed providing for the continuance of the act of 1888 for a period of ten years. These bills have been published and are universally known far and near.

The prince and ministers do not know whether the President, in perusing these bills, which are in violation of and abrogate the treaties, will approve of them or. not. If the treaties of friendship of several tens of years standing are to be abrogated instantly, then such action would be decidedly at variance with the original intent and purpose of the United States Government when it negotiated the treaties with China.

The treaties between the United States and China all originated at the instance of the former Government. The yamên two years ago argued and discussed tho question of the restriction of Chinese laborers, and clearly and minutely set forth the views entertained, in a communication addressed to the United States minister.

The prince and ministers have the honor to now request his excellency the minister of the United States to bo good enough to dispatch a telegram inquiring of the Secretary of State whether the bill discussed in Congress, in violation of treaty, continuing the restriction of Chinese for a further period of ten years, las received the approval aud signature of the President or not, and to send a reply at an early date, and oblige.

A necessary communication addressed to his excellency Charles Denby, etc.

(Inclosure 2 in No. 1542.)

Mr. Denby to the yamên.


Peking, June 17, 1892. Your HIGHNESS AND YOUR EXCELLENCIES: I have the honor to acknowledge the receipt of the communication of your highness and your excellencies of the 13th instant.

Your highness and your excellencies request me to wire to the honorable Secretary of State of the United States, to ascertain whether his excellency the President has approved of “the bill discussed in Congress

continuing the restriction of Chinese for a further period of ten years."

I have, as requested, sent a telegram to that effect to the honorable Secretary of State, and will transmit the substance of the answer thereto to your highness and your excellencies when it is received. I have, etc.,


Afr. Denby to Mr. Blaine. No. 1544.)


Peking, June 20, 1892. (Received August 9.) Sir: In my dispatch No. 1542 of June 17, I transmitted to you copies of a correspondence between the foreign office and myself touching the question whether the President had approved the recent act of Congress relating to Chinese restriction. Having received your cable. gram of June 17, of which I acknowledged the receipt in my dispatch No. 1513 of June 19, I sent this day to the foreign office a communication of which a copy is herewith inclosed. I shall await your instructions of the 17th ultimo before taking any further action. I have, etc.,


(Inclosure in No. 1514.)

Mr. Denby to the tsung-li Yamên.


Peking, June 20, 1892. Your HIGHNESS AND YOUR EXCELLENCIES: I have the honor to inform your highness and your excellencies that the honorable Secretary of State has informed me by cablegram that the President has approved the recent Chinese restriction law whicí was enacted by Congress, extending existing legislation ten years.

An official copy of this law was mailed to me on the 17th ultimo, but has not yet reached me. I will transmit a copy thereof to your highness and your excellencies as soon as one reaches nie. In advance of the receipt of an official copy it would serve no gcoil purpose to set out in detail the provisions of this law, but judging from newspaper copies that I have seen thereof it is safe to say that it simply extends existing laws for the period of ten years, and provides some additional safeguards for their execution. It does not apply to any class of Chinese subjects except laborers. I have, etc.


Mr. Denby to Mr. Blaine.

No. 1516.)


Peking, June 28, 1892. (Received August 9.) SIR: In my dispatch No. 1535 of May 23, I forwarded to you an ab. stract of the report of the foreign office to the throne in the case of Chou lan.

I have now the honor to inclose a printed translation of the said report, together with a translation of the Imperial decree rendered thereon.

This report is worth preserving, because it contains the distinct aumission "That the preaching of Christianity is permitted by treaty" and that if there be anything improper or against treaty in the missions, it should be reported to the authorities for joint action, and that baseless reports should not be spread," and these statements are approved by the throne. I have, etc.,


(Inclosure in No. 1546.] Printed translation of the report of the foreign office to the throne in the case of Chou Han.


The Tsung-li Yamên has been desired to report on a memorial concerning the case of issuing placards and forging official docuinents in Hu-Nan. The yamên recommends that the proposals of Chang-chih-tung be adopted. Although Chou lan bas not issued placards or forged official documents, still he, an official in the Government service, by his wild langnage and insane conduct has enabled ill-disposed persons to make use of his name and excite the public by fabricated stories. He therefore can not be held guiltless. Lot expectant Taotai Chou Han be cashierod forthwith. Let him further be compelled to return to his home and be kept under the strict supervision of the local authorities, who will not allow him to go abroad or canse trouble. The remainder of the memorial is approved.


MAY 28 AND 29.

The governor-general, Chang Chih-tung and governor of Hu-Nan report that they have investigated the charges made against Chou Han of issuing libelous placards and forging official documents. In the first instance a dispatch was addressed to them by the Tsung-li Yamên which mentioned the offense which had been committed against the laws of the country, the manifest desire to cause disorder, the horrible indecency of the songs and pictures in question, and their dangerous effect in stirring up the people to commit outrages. Both in the interests of international comity and as a matter of internal administration, it was necessary that the offenders should be sternly dealt with. Later telegrams from the same department indi. cated Chou Han and three booksellers at Changsha as the issuers of large numbers of these placards, and dwelt on the fact that the late riots were all caused by the dissenination of false reports. The matter has already been put into the hands of the Hu-Nan chief justice when a further telegram in March was received from the yamên urging promptness. The governor-general then, through the yamên, obtained the Emperor's permission to send the Hupeh Grain Taotai to join the chief justice in dealing with the affair. These two officers have now presented their report.

Under their orders the prefect of Changsha ascertained that Chou Han was a taotai on the Shensi staff, promoted on account of military service. He had bolonged to Ninghsiang Hsien, but was often in Changsha, where he published virtuons books under the name of “The Hall of Precious Goodness." "The three men mentioned by the yamên, Cheng Mou-Hua, Tseng Yu-wen, and Chen Chu-tê, all kept print shops, but Tseng Yu-wen died during the past year. Chen mou-hua, on being interpreted, said that he knew Chou Han. The latter had never been his partner, but had stayed with him a few days last year; at times his talk was very wild, and he was like a madman. Deponent had heard that the blocks for his book's were cut by Tseng Yu-wen and Chen Chutê. The last mentioned was then examined. He had cut blocks for Chou Han for good books, such as “ The Successful Rearing of Foundlings” and others similar. The printing was done by the purchaser. There were many workmen in his shop; they knew nothing of books; they did the work brought to them and took the money without inquiring anything about the cuistomer. Deponent could not remember if any of them had cut blocks for the books and pictures of the authorship of which Chou Han was accused. Finally a man from Tseng Yu-wen's shop was questioned. He said that his master had cut blocks for Chou Han. They were for good books. He could not remember if any of them were abusive of foreign religions. When his master died the shop was closed and the workmen dispersed.

In the meantime, the two commissioners had sent deputies to Ninghsiang to find Chou Han and bring him to Changsha. They returned with the information that Chou Han had come back to his home eight years ago, but lie soon afterwards went off with his wife and children, and had not been there again. They brought with them, however, some of his relations and neighbors. The evidence of these witnesses was to the effect that Chou Han had not been at home for six or seven years; but of late he had been subject to temporary illnesses, which had an effect on his brain. He talked nonsense, and had spiritualistic fancies, being a great believer in divination by the planchette. He had never believed in foreign religions, but he did not publish songs and placards. They thought that both in this matter and in the forging of public dispatches, designing persons must hare made use of his namo as that of a person in high position in order to attract more attention. The commissioners, though they failed to ascertain who was the writer of the placards, felt it their duty at any rate to secure the destruction of the blocks. Rewards were therefore offered to anyone who would bring them in, and a promise given that the bearers of them should not be punished. By this means thirty-one blocks were secured, many of them much defaced, evidently by people who feared they might get into trouble by possessing them.

The witnesses from Ninghsiang were then reëxamined, but their evidence was to the same effect as already stated. Then the printer, Ch’en Chu-tê, was summoned again. He declared that his shop was one of long standing. He had many workmer and many customers. In the accounts a customer's surname alone would be entered, or very likely work would be ordered through a third party; and so nothing could be traced by looking at the account books. He really could not say whether some of the workmen in the shop had cut blocks for any of the books mentioned. If so, the order had been taken without his, the proprietor's, knowledge. The other printer, Cheng-Mou hua, persisted in denying that he had exocuted work for Chou Han, but spoke again of his lits of madness.

The commissioners, being aware of the gravity of the case, were determincél to spare no trouble, and therefore had private inquiries made by the local authorities. It was established beyond doubt that Chou Han had gone away from Changsha; and those who knew him, while denying that he had published anti-Christian books, all spoke of his fits of madness, which had of late been worse than before and accompanied by great irascibility. Indeed, seenued to the commissioners, from the evidence as to his state of mind, that if found he could not usefully have been subjected to examination. On the strength of the general evidence, the cominissioners ascribe both the libolous publications and the forged letters to persons who made uathorized use of Chou Han's name, and they mention that the supposed letter to the governor of Hupel never reached that oflicer at all. But the evidence from all parties as to the wildness of Chou Han's mind and behavior is such that the commissioners think le should be reported for punishment. Cheng Mou-hua is blameworthy for admiringly consorting with a man whom he acknowledges to have been mad. The same is the case with Ch'en Chu-tê, who kept no chock upon his workmen, and permitted them to execute orders without supervision, thereby allowing trouble to be caused. It is therefore proposed that these two men should be punished for their improper conduct by a flogging of eighty blows and three months' wooden collar, and their shops be closed in perpetuity. At the same time the local authorities have been desired to institute a strict search through all the province for the real authors of the libels and forged documents.

The memorialist represents that the preaching of Christianity is permitted by treaty, and it is of their own free will that Chinese become converts; that if there be anything improper or against treaty in the missions it should be reported to the authorities for joint action, and that baseless reports should not be spread. Chou Han, though acquitted of the offenses charged, still, by the conduct above described, has enabled others to make use of his name for bad purposes. They therefore propose that he should be temporarily cashiered and kept at home under surveillance, without being permitted to visit the provincial capital. If his mental state is improvedl and his conduct becomes exemplary his case might be after a time taken into consideration again. The memorialists further recommend that the sentences passed upon the booksellers be confirmed. The thirty-one blocks which were discovered have been destroyed by tho Hankow taotai in the presence of the consul at that port. Referred to the tsung-li yamén.

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Prince Ch’ing and the ministers of the tsung-li yamên present a report on the above matter. Their memorial, except for a few lines, is simply a recapitulation of Chang Chih-tung's statements and an indorsement of his proposals. The prince anıl ministers state that their attention was called to the printing at Changsha by a letter from Mr. Von Brandt in November, and by Sir John Walsham in January, who said at an interview that a copy of the productions had been sent by the consul at Hankow to the secretary of state for foreign affairs in England. They remark on the freedom of any who wish to become Christians and the gravity of the case in question because of the troubles which spring from the dissemination of false tales. They beg that Chang Chih-tung's report may be adopted. Decree issued previously.

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