The Vice President of the Banque Nationale de la République d’Haiti ( R. L. Farnham ) to the Acting Secretary of State

Sir: Referring to the conversation recently had with you, concerning the necessity for the prompt increase in the circulation of Gourdes in Haiti and to the position of the Banque Nationale de la République d’Haiti in connection therewith, we wish to advise you that immediately upon the conclusion of our conference with you the whole matter was cabled to Paris for consideration there by the Board of the Bank.

Up to this moment we have received no reply, the delay doubtless being due to the crowded condition of the cables. Recognizing, however, [Page 356] the seriousness of the situation in Haiti and of further delays, and to evidence the good will and desire of the Bank to do all in its power to alleviate the situation, we advise you hereby that without waiting longer for word from the Board in Paris, the officers of the Bank in New York will commence the operation of the Retreat as suggested in the cable from the Financial Advisor of Haiti to the State Department, as presented to us in the Department’s letter of January 10, LA 638.51/781.,51 as soon as the Financial Advisor has agreed to the recognition of the amount due the Bank by the Haitian Government as discussed between us in our conference.

The form of evidencing this obligation which will be most acceptable to us, and we trust to you, is as set forth in the cable enclosed herewith52 and addressed to the Manager of the Banque Nationale de la République d’Haiti at Port-au-Prince. In view of the great importance of having this telegram correctly transmitted to the Manager of the Bank at Port-au-Prince, we are asking if your Department will be good enough to transmit the same through the American Legation at Port-au-Prince to the Manager of our Bank there, sending the charge for such telegraphic transmission to us at New York, and we will gladly remit the amount to the Department. We suggest the transmission of this note by telegram solely for the purpose of saving time and to enable the Financial Advisor more quickly to complete the document, in order that the Manager of the Bank may cable us of such completion, and in order that upon receipt of such cable from the Manager we can at once begin the printing of the necessary Gourde notes. Then, following the desire of the Financial Advisor, we can ship these notes to Haiti as soon as printed, to relieve at once the strained situation there whilst we are taking up the details of the carrying out of the plan of Retreat in its entirety.

Very truly yours,

R. L. Farnham
  1. Letter of Jan. 10 not printed (correct reference is LA 838.51/781); for cable of Financial Adviser, see telegram of Jan. 6, noon, from the Minister in Haiti, p. 355.
  2. See telegram of Jan. 17, to the Minister in Haiti, infra.