Grover Cleveland

Special Message

January 02, 1889

To the Senate:

On or about the 25th day of September, 1888, I received a copy of a resolution adopted on that day by the Senate in executive session, requesting the transmission to that body by the President of all communications and correspondence (not heretofore sent to the Senate) under his control on the subject of the proposed convention with China, transmitted by him to the Senate by message dated 16th March, 1888, and on the subject of the reported failure of the Government of China to finally agree to the same.

A few days after the copy of said resolution was received by me, and on the 1st day of October, 1888 , I sent a communication to the Congress, accompanying my approval of a bill prohibiting the return of Chinese laborers to the United States, in which I supposed all the information sought under the terms of the Senate resolution above recited was fully supplied.

I beg to refer in this connection to Senate Executive Document No. 273, first session of the Fiftieth Congress, and especially to page 3 thereof.

Believing the information contained in said document answered the purposes of said Senate resolution, no separate and explicit answer was made thereto.

But in my message of October 1, 1888, the tenor and purport of a cipher dispatch from our minister in China to the Secretary of State, dated September 21, 1888, was given instead of attempting to transmit a copy of the same.

For greater precision, however, and with the object of answering in more exact terms the resolution of the Senate, I transmit with this, in paraphrase of the cipher, a copy of the said dispatch. I also transmit copies of two notes which accompanied my message of October 1, 1888, one from Mr. Shu Cheon Port, charge' d'affaires of the Chinese legation in this city, dated September 25, 1888, to the Secretary of State, and the other being the reply thereto by the Secretary of State, dated September 26, 1888, both of which will be found in Senate Executive Document No. 273.

The dispatch and notes above referred to comprise, in the language of the Senate resolution, "all communications and correspondence" the transmission of which is therein requested.


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

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