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Special Message

May 05, 1852

To the Senate of the United States:

On the 3d of March, 1849, a general convention of peace, amity, commerce, and navigation between the United States and the Republic of Guatemala, by Elijah Hise, the charge' d'affaires of the United States to that Republic, on the part of this Government, and by Senor Don Jose Mariano Rodriguez, minister for foreign affairs, on the part of the Government of Guatemala. This convention was approved by the Senate on the 24th of September, 1850, and by a resolution of the 27th of that month that body authorized the ratification of this Government to be exchanged for the ratification of the Government of Guatemala at anytime prior to the 1st of April, 1851. I accordingly ratified the convention on the 14th of November, 1850, but there was then no person in this country authorized to effect the exchange of ratifications on the part of the Guatemalan Government, and the United States had no diplomatic representative there. When, however, in the summer of 1851, Mr. J. Bozman Kerr proceeded to Nicaragua as the charge' d'affaires of the United. States, he was empowered and instructed, when he should have concluded the business, which it was presumed would not have detained him long, in Nicaragua, to repair to Guatemala and effect the exchange on the part of this Government. Circumstances, however, have hitherto prevented him from accomplishing this object. Meanwhile Senor Don Felipe Molina has been received as charge' d'affaires of Guatemala here, and has been empowered to effect the exchange on the part of that Government.

I accordingly recommend that the Senate authorize a further extension of the period for exchanging the ratifications, in order that the convention may go into operation. It is presumed that if this recommendation should be adopted a few weeks from the date of the decision of the Senate upon the subject would be necessary to complete the preparations for carrying it into effect.


Millard Fillmore, Special Message Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project

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