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Reciprocal Commercial Convention Between the
United States and Cuba 1902 [Text derived from message of the President of the United States.]
After the adoption of the Cuban Constitution President McKinley promised the Cubans that he would use his influence to get some reciprocity measures passed which should lighten the burden of the tariff. President Roosevelt felt pledged to carry out Mr. McKinley's promise and in his message of December 1901 he strongly urged the passage of reciprocity measures. This was most necessary for the Cuban sugar industry was greatly depressed. There was much opposition to the proposition, chiefly from the manufacturers of beet sugar and from parties interested in cane sugar in the southern states and Hawaii, and it was impossible to get a reciprocity bill through congress before its adjournment in June 1902. Then the administration tried another plan. It sent a representative to Cuba to negotiate a reciprocity treaty. Such a treaty was drawn up and ratified by Cuba. A supplementary convention, extending the time within which the ratifications of the commercial treaty might be exchanged, was signed by the representatives of both countries 26 January 1903. After considerable discussion the commercial treaty was ratified by the United States senate, 19 March 1903. A change of tariff rates was involved and since the Constitution gives the house a voice in all matters dealing with revenue,
it was necessary to pass a bill before the treaty could go into effect. A joint resolution was considered in the special session of congress which began in November 1903, and was passed 16 December. The president signed the treaty the following day and issued a proclamation announcing that it would go into effect 27 December 1903.
Panama Ship-Canal Treaty 1904
[Text derived from message of the President of the United States.]
The work of building the Panama canal was begun by a French company organized about the year 1879. The stock was taken in small sums by thousands of French people and concessions were obtained from the republic of Colombia for land and other rights necessary for the work. On 21 February 1881 the construction of the canal began under the direction of Ferdinand de Lessups, the famous French engineer. In 1888 the French stockholders grew suspicious that their money was not properly appropriated and refused to give more. It transpired that the funds had been wasted and that only a small part of the work had been done. In spite of the scandal another company was organized in 1894–5. After a few months there was another scandal and no more money could be raised. Since then
little work has been done and the machinery and other property of the company on the isthmus has been going to ruin.
In the meantime the United States government was investigating the Nicaragua route. Some of the engineers became convinced that the Panama route was more desirable. At this juncture the French company saw an opportunity to get rid of a “white elephant" and proposed to sell out to the United States for $40,000,000. The latter then began negotiations, after the necessary measures had passed through Congress, for the purchase of the canal rights. In order to clear the way for the building of the canal the United States had to do two things—buy out the French company and make a treaty with Colombia for the control of the canal strip across the isthmus, over which the republic held sovereignty. A treaty with Colombia was
drawn up early in 1903 and ratified by the congress of the United States, but was rejected by the Colombian congress. It is now said that the politicians did not intend to defeat the treaty finally, but the plan was to delay the matter until late in 1904, when the concession to the French company would expire, and then claim a part of the money which was to go to that
company. But the prosperity of the cities of Colon and Panama depended on the building of the canal and the people of the isthmus were so dissatisfied with Colombia for rejecting the treaty that in November 1903 they, seceded and set up a republic for themselves. Another treaty for the canal strip was drawn up and was ratified by the United States and the republic of Panama. Final steps have been taken for the transfer of the French company's rights to the United States. 405 Contract with
Wyse. In 1877 the Colombian government granted a concession to Lucien N. B. Wyse for constructing a canal across the isthmus. The Panama Canal Company purchased the concession.
Address, of colonists, to king, 42, colonists forced to resort to, 43;
46; to people of Great Britain, right of people to keep and bear,
Army, power of congress to raise
isdiction of, 35, 37, 41, 45. Articles, of confederation of New
federation of 1777, 59–71.
Assemblies, colonial, dissolved, 38,
treaty for cession of, 335-340. Association, non-importation, non-
tion, 42, 46.
receive, 106; original jurisdic by congress, 101; by any state,
affecting, 107; recall of, 154.
vision for, 109; added to Con stitution, 114.
by congress, 100.
inate in house of representatives,
dent, 99; how passed over presi-
dent's veto, 99.
Boston, act to discontinue use of as
claims by, 343–354; settlement General Gage to inhabitants of,
Boundaries, of Quebec enlarged,
between British possessions and by, 40; Massachusetts, taken
Panama canal strip, 394, 395. States authorized to acquire
Colonists, American, entitled to
admission of, 258; report on res subjects, 34; petitions of treated
Colorado river open by treaty of
Columbia, District of, suppression
fugitive slave law in, 270–272.
tion of interior, 161; treaty with bay company, 227.
tion of report of, 260.
Compromise, Missouri, 206-210;