Wednesday, September 18, 2013

"As to the possession of the firearms by the American residents of Apia, NO POWER HAS AUTHORITY to take possession of them..."

While the Kaiser's Mouthpiece Is Pulling the Wool Over the
Delaware Statesman's Eyes German Understrappers Are
Treating Americans in Samoa Like Dogs.
Dr. Knappe, the German Consul, Rules With an Iron Hand.
Representatives of England and America Placed Under Police Surveillance.
"Grandma" Bayard Folds His; Hands, and Says Uncle Sam Must Keep Faith With the Autocrat Who Blows Hot and Cold in the Same Breath.
[From the Sunday Globe.]
   San Francisco, Feb. 16.— The Oceanic steamship Mariposa arrived today from Australia, brings advices that on Oct. 17, the bark Noel, when in latitude 24,56 N.W., longitude 23 W sighted a bark rigged vessel under reefed upper topsails and jig flying signals of distress. She proved to be the Clara, of Tonsberg. Her crew had deserted her two days previously. From evidence taken at the inquiry into the supposed murder of J. S. Armstrong, government agent of Labor Schooner Ariel by natives of Manoba, there is some doubt as to whether he was actually murdered, and he may now be alive among the natives. The Mariposa brings the first mail advices from the Samoan Island since Jan. 2, when the preceding steamship of the Oceanic line left there. The Mariposa left the island of Tutuila on Feb. 1, and brings the official report of the United States consul and American naval officers of the action of the German naval force in Samoa since the engagement of Dec. 18 between the natives and the Germans which were forwarded in tonight's mail to Washington. At the time of the departure of the Mariposa the necessity for the presence of the American men-of-war ordered to the scene is claimed to have been urgent, as the operations of the Germans were directed more against the American and English residents than against Mataafa and his forces, as in the case of the latter chieftain, whom the Germans
   The German consul visited his camp to induce him to accept the German rule while in the case of the American and Englishmen, the right of search of vessels and private houses in Apia was embodied in an official proclamation. Formal declaration of war against King Mataafa was made by the German authorities on Jan. 19, and martial law established for the entire islands. On the same day, English subjects were seized and taken on board the German man-of-war. Instead of war being prosecuted against Mataafa and his followers, the Germans have neglected them almost entirely and have confined their operations against American and English subjects. Early in the month of January, numbers of Tamasese's men began deserting. There being mutiny by one of his most prominent chiefs, who decided that while it might be legitimate enough to fight against their own people, yet they were not willing to join with the Germans in fighting against the natives of Samoa. Apia remained practically deserted. The German officers from the warships and the German consul made daily trips along the beach in Apia, taking observations of the Mataafa boats, which were drawn up on the beach. On the 8th of January a large boat containing Tamasese's soldiers came up from the coast, and communicated with the German war ship Adler. The same night several deserters from Tamasese's side went to the camp of King Mataafa at Masaigi, and informed him that the rebels
on Apia on the following night, and also assaulted the Mataafa party. The Germans were to assist the rebels as much as possible, and the American and English residents were to be attacked "equally with Mataafa's men. The king at once informed the American and English residents in Apia of this fact, thus giving them an opportunity to prepare for an attack. Lieut. F.F. Fillette. of the United States marine corps, in charge of the marine guard at the American consulate, was aroused by the sentry on that night and informed that fire was in progress in Mataafale. He with four marines ran to the scene of the fire, about one mile away, and was one of the first to arrive there. It was feared that the residence of the German consul, Dr. Knappe, was in flames. In a few minutes the fire had communicated to the German postoffice at the other end of the building, and, reaching across the street, the flames attacked the German consulate. A large force of sailors from the United States ship Nipsic was sent ashore to 

   A few minutes later a detachment from the English war ship Royalist arrived, and half an hour afterwards a large force of sailors from the German war ships Adler, Olga and Eber arrived, each man carrying a loaded rifle with fixed bayonet. The American and English sailors brought pumps and axes. The fire in the meantime had spread to the residence of Mr. Schmidt, the German vice consul, and the Staadt Hamburg hotel. The American and English residents (among the former being United States Vice Consul Blacklock) fought the fire, which was only destroying German property, until they were nearly exhausted. The American and English sailors worked until overcome by heat, carrying water, using axes and saving property belonging to the German Traiding and Planting company. The store of Grevsmuhl & Co., and the large store and residence of Ah Sue, were destroyed, as well as the court house, jail, three small German dwellings, several native houses and a native church. While the fire was in progress. Consul Knappe declared he thought the occurrence was entirely accidental, due to the carelessness of several black laborers, brought from other plantations to work on the German plantations, and who were hanging about his about this time. Within five or six hours later, however, Concul Knappe expressed his belief that the American and English residents of Apia were.
   Consul Knappe established his office in the premises ot the German Planting and Trading company. The German war ship Eber sailed for Auckland on the 12th, taking the dispatches to be sent to the German government concerning the burning of the consulate. A Mataafa native was publicly whipped in the afternoon in the presence of many Americans, Englishmen, natives and a few Germans for having told the German consular clerk in the street a few days before that Mataafa men would soon have his head. On the afternoon of Jan. 15, the boat belonging to ex-United States vice Consul E.L. Hamilton, manned by two natives, was seized by an armed boat from the German ship Adler while in neutral water of Apia harbor. The boat was afterwards released, and when an explanation was demanded by Consul Blacklock, Consul Knappe replied that it was because, the boat had not displayed any national flag. The English merchant steamer Richmond arrived in Apia harbor shortly before dark on the 18th. The. vice consul received no news, and the Americans were left in the dark as to the intentions of the American government to protect its citizens. The correspondent of the Examiner at Apia, writing of the arrival of the Richmond, says at 1 o'clock in the morning of Jan. 19 the Richmond was boarded by a crew of armed boats from the Adler, although an armed German boat had been watching her about 100 yards from the moment she arrived. The officer, in command of the former boat informed the captain of the Richmond that
by the Germans against Samoa; that the harbor had been blockaded and that martial law had been declared in Samoa. The captain was further told that no freight would be allowed to taken from the Richmond unless taken directly to the wharf of the German Trading and Planting company, where it would be opened, and the propriety of admitting it to Samoa would be passed upon by Herr Beckmann. manager of the German firm, and a person who was in no way-whatever connected with the German government in an official capacity. This proceeding on the part of the German war ship verified the belief that the German consul had received important news from his government. At daylight on the morning of the 19th an armed boat from the Adler was seen anchored about a hundred yards astern of the Richmond for the purpose of preventing any freight being landed, and also to intercept any boats going to or coming from the vessel and ascertain the reason of their presence in the neighborhood of the ship. Soon after 9 o'clock in the morning a proclamation printed in the English and German languages but not in Samoan, was issued by the German consul as follows:
By order of the imperial government, I herewith proclaim the state of war for Samoan islands. Any assistance to rebels will be punished by martial law, irrespective of any nationality. Introduction of contraband goods of war is prohibited. All vessels and boats are liable to be searched by the authorities." The police from the Adler went on board of the Richmond,
named Gillan, while he was in his bath, and without giving him time to put on his stockings, but merely his coat and trousers, took him on board of the Olga. Consul Coetleson and Capt. Hand were informed of Gillan's arrest and went on board the Olga and demanded an explanation. Capt. Ebrhardt said Gillan had been arrested because it was believed he was a spy. The German captain was told that
unless he sent the prisoner on board of the Richmond at once the armed boat from the Royalist would go to the Olga and t[a]ke him off the ship. Gillan was returned to the Richmond without delay. Consul Coetleson has informed his government of the fact that an armed German boat forcibly took a British subject from under the English flag. Vice Consul Blacklock addressed a letter to Dr. Knappe on the 21st asking whether the imperial German government had declared war against Samoa, and also why King Mataafa and h[i]s men were referred to by the German consul as rebels. To this the German consul replied that the imperial German government had declared war against Mataafa and his followers, and that they were
because they had rebelled against Tamassee, who had been recognized as the king of Samoa by the German government. In the afternoon the Richmond left for Tahiti, her captain declaring that he intended bringing a heavy claim against the German government for detention. A proclamation was issued on the morning of Jan. 21 by Vice Consul Blacklock, in which he announced that, having been informed by the German consul that the German 'government had declared war against Mataafa and his followers, he notified all citizens of the United States that they were forbidden to take part in any hostile operations on either side, and that as long as they remained noncombatants they were entitled to personal immunity and protection. It was further announced that any offense committed against American subjects or their property would be an offense against the laws of war and ought to be at once reported to the United States vice consul in order that the offender or offenders might be brought to justice. Capt. Fritze sent a letter to Mr. Cusack, publisher of the Samoa Times, in the afternoon, notifying him that the
from that date because of an inflammatory article which had appeared in the issue of Jan. 19, in which it was said, among other things, that "Tamasese had last fall been driven from Mulinuupoini by the man-of-war Adams because of an insult to the American flag there," and also on account of other statements. On the night of Jan. 20 Klein went to the American consulate at the request of Consul BlacKlock, who advised him that an armed German guard was looking for him to arrest him. The steamer Wanuui, a small British vessel arrived from Wellington, New Zealand, early on the morning of the 23d, bringing special dispatches for the German consul. On the afternoon of the same day the German consul, Knappe, went to Mataafa's camp, and was received by the latter's chiefs, Mataafa not appearing. The German consul told them that a declaration of war and establishment of marshal law had been directed against American and English residents of Samoa, who had been giving Mataafa evil advice and assistance against the Germans, who were only anxious to be good friends with all Samoans. In case Mataafa and his people refused to make peace, said the German consul, the emperor of Germany had given him authority to send for all men of war, soldiers and cannon he desired to make war. The chiefs informed the consul they would

unless a promise was given in writing, made in the presence of the consuls, that Tamasese and Brandeis would be sent out of the country and assurances given that Germany would not attempt to take advantage of King Mataafa and his government after it was established. Before, they asked for two weeks in which to consider the German consul's proposition, It had previously been arranged that two weeks' time should be demanded in order that time might be given the arrival of news from the United States in regard to what action the government had taken concerning Samoa. The Samoans based all their hopes for rescue from the Germans upon the news which the next San Francisco steamer would bring about the action of the United States Jan. 23, Capt. Fritze announced that he would thereafter exercise police control in Samoa. Consul Blacklock declined to recognize this proclamation. In this document he requested all civilians of Apia to give information to the German officer of the guard on shore of the number of firearms and quantity of ammunition in their possession on or before the 25th evening. All firearms and ammunition were to be officially sealed, and all arms and ammunition of which no information had been given was to be seized, and the owner or owners of the same punished by imprisonment, or by transportation. Capt. Mullan wrote some vigorous letters to Capt. Fritze on the evening of the 24th. protesting, in the name of the United States government against the latter's proclamation of the previous day concerning the police in Apia. The government of Tamesese said Capt. Mullan had never been recognized by the United Slates government. As to the possession of the firearms by the American residents of Apia,
to take possession of them unless used against a friendly power or while in transit for such use. Capt. Mullan also said that, in his opinion, the condition and state of war in Samoa did not warrant martial law being proclaimed. The civil courts in Apia still existed and were in operation, and if any citizen offended against the law, they could be tried there. Martial law could not arise from threatened invasion; necessity must be actual and present and invasion real. Referring again to the proclamation concerning firearms and threatening imprisonment and deportation, Capt. Mullan said even if necessity for martial law in this had arisen, the proclamation of Capt. Fritze in regard to firearms was an unprecedented, uncalled for and a surprising one, and one which would astonish citizens of all free countries. The American captain said that he would call the attention of his government especially to this proclamation, which was

in free government, having a due regard for the safety of its citizens. Capt. Fritze replied to this that he would leave the question as to his authority to declare martial law to his superior official in Germany. On the night of Jan. 21 Klein was taken on board the American man-of-war Nipsic, having eluded the German police. On Jan. 25 Capt. Fritze sent the following letter to Capt. Mullan:
"The information has reached me that an American citizen, J.C. Klein, is on board the United States ship Nipsic. If that should be true I herecy request that you would surrender him to the German military tribunal on board the ship Adler, for cause, as has been laid before me, maintained and witnessed by oath, that he in a conspicuous manner was concerned in the attack on the landing party of his imperial German majesty's ship Olga on Dec. 15, 1888."
   A reply was sent to Captain Fritze by Captain Mullan in which the latter said he was obliged to give protection to every American citizen in Samoa who was entitled to it. Charges made against Klein by the German authorities could not be settled by a military tribunal in Samoa, but would have to be considered and finally passed upon by the government at Washington and Berlin. He therefore positively declined to deliver to any German naval or civil authority in Samoa. Klein was taken by the Nipsic to Tutila and placed on board of the Mariposa, bound for this port. John Christafferson, paymaster of the American man-of-war Nipsic, returned from Samoa on the Mariposa, having obtained leave of absence, he expressed himself as believing that the affair would end in war unless action is quickly taken by the American government. Close watch has to be kept on the German war vessels to prevent any overt act on their part. While the Americans on land are compelled to put up with repeated insults from the German portion of the population. It is openly charged in the islands that Dr. Knappe, who has charge of the postoffice, opens the United States mails, only delivering those he sees fit. Both American and British citizens at Samoa have denounced Knappe. Personal feeling against him is very bitter. It is even declared that Knappe has succeeded in obtaining the United States government's secret cypher, for in a number of instances when the government dispatches of a private nature had been sent through the department it has afterward been discovered that they had been tampered with.
   No further mail advices can be expected from the Samoan islands until March 16, when the steamship Zealandia will arrive with information to close of the present month. In the meantime Admiral Kimberly with the man-of-war Trenton, reinforced by the man-of-war Vandalia, will have reached Apia, and possibly the Omaha from the Asiatic station. New Zealand and Australian papers express belief that Admiral Kimberly will be able re-establish rights of American citizens as soon as he arrives.
[St. Paul Daily Globe, St. Paul, Minn., Monday Morning, February 18, 1889. Vol. XI. No. 49. Pg. 6]

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