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The question is whether the tax is scaled according to the amount of trade, or takes the form of a fixed license tax. If the latter, and it should be disproportionate to the limited feed practice of the missionaries, it is probable that the Persian Government would allow their gratuitous practice, if they should agree to confine themselves to that and abandon competition with natives who practice medicine for gain.

Awaiting such observations as you may think prudent to offer in regard to the matter, I am, etc.,

W. Q. GRESHAM.

Mr. McDonald to Mr. Gresham.

No. 15.]

LEGATION OF THE UNITED STATES,

Teheran, September 21, 1893. (Received October 27.) SIR: I have the honor to acknowledge the receipt of your No. 11 of August 15, 1893, in reply to Mr. Sperry's No. 60, diplomatic series, in regard to the order of the Persian Government for the taxation of foreign residents engaged in trade in Persia. The word trade as used in its general sense hardly expresses the term used in the Persian Gov. ernment circular, which formed the subject of Mr. Sperry's dispatch. “The trades” would be the more correct form, meaning thereby such kinds of occupation as carpentry, tailoring, blacksmithing, shoemaking, hatmaking, drapery, etc. Wholesale exporters and importers are exempt from these taxes, on the ground that they pay their proportion of the general taxation in customs duty. Men engaged in professions, such as doctors, lawyers, and the priestly class generally, are also excluded.

The taxation of the trades is one of the oldest methods of raising revenue, and dates from about the time of the Mohammedan conquest of Persia, or upward of one thousand years ago; and, notwithstanding revolutions and the changes of dynasties, the amount collected from each trade has been rarely altered. Each trade is taxed according to some general computation of the profits gained in the course of the year. For instance, all the shoemakers of Teheran pay a tax of 12,000 krans, or about $1,500 a year; the sellers of native medicines (herbs), who also keep in their shops a few other articles, such as sugar, tea, tobacco, etc., pay a tax of 6,000 krans, or about $750 a year. The payment of these taxes has to be made during ten months of the yeartwo holy months, the months of Ramazan and Muharram are excluded. The levying and collecting the taxes are somewhat peculiar, although they secure to each person a certain degree of protection from unjust exactions. Once in six months a meeting of all the members of the trade is called at some appointed place, when the position and standing of each individual is inquired into, and the amount that each person is to pay is determined by themselves, in such proportion as to make up the full amount due to the Government. One person, generally the chief of the trade, is appointed, with an officer on the part of the Gov. ernment, to collect the tax from each individual according to his assessment. Thus, it appears, that no one engaged in any trade is taxed without his having first had an opportunity of being heard on the subject.

I have not yet heard of any claim being made against an American citizen for the payment of these taxes, and I do not think that any will be made. I have, etc.,

ALEX, McDONALD,

Mr. McDonald to Mr. Gresham.

No. 57.1

LEGATION OF THE UNITED STATES, Teheran, Persia, January 11, 1894. (Received February 17.) SIR: I have the honor to transmit herewith a copy of the translation of the memorandum sent from the foreign office respecting the taxation of foreignerse engaged in various trades in Persia, and a copy of the translation of the reply thereto. I am, etc.,

ALEX. McDONALD.

(Inclosure 1 in No. 57.]

Memorandum from the Persian foreign office.. It has been decreed that all subjects of foreign powers engaged in the different tradės and businesses of and residing in Persia shall pay the ordinary assessed taxes, in the same proportion as the natives of the country.

As the various legations of foreign countries have sent in the names of their subjects employed in the trades, it is respectfully requested that the legation (the United States) will also send into the foreign office a list of its subjects, that regulations may be issued regarding them.

(Seal of the Kavam-ed-Dowlah, minister of foreign affairs.]

[Inclosure 2 in No. 57.]
Memorandum from United States legation in reply to the above.

LEGATION OF THE UNITED STATES,

Teheran, January 10, 1894. In reply to the memorandum of the imperial foreign office, dated the 28th of Jamadi-es-Sani, corresponding to the 5th of January, respecting the taxation of foreigners engaged in the various trades of Persia, this legation begs to report, for the information of the foreign office, that, having made careful inquiries, it finds that throughout Persia there are no citizens of the United States engaged in any of the taxable trades referred to in the memorandum.

ALEX. McDONALD.

ASSIGNMENTS OF CLAIMS BY PERSIAN SUBJECTS TO FOREIGNERS.

Mr. McDonald to Mr. Gresham.

No. 21.]

LEGATION OF THE UNITED STATES, Teheran, September 25, 1893. (Received November 3.) Sir: I have the honor to inclose for your information a copy and translation of a circular memorandum, received from the Persian foreign minister on the 22d instant.

The practice to which the memorandum refers is of long standing. When a Persian subject fails. to recover a claim from a fellow-citizen to which he thinks he has a bona fide right, he very often transfers the documents relating to the claim to the citizen of a foreign state for / some valuable consideration or on the pretext that the transferee has some counter claim against him to the full or even a greater amount. The purchaser or transferee then presses the claim through the inter mediary of his legation, and, rightly or wrongly, very often succeeds in recovering the whole of the claim.

I have no reason to think that any United States citizen bas ever resorted or will ever resort to this practice, either to prevent an injustice or to make profit; yet I have nevertheless sent a copy of the memorandum to each of the missions in Persia, so as to prevent misunderstanding. I have, etc.,

ALEX. McDONALD,

[Inclosure in No. 21.- Translation.] Memorandum from the minister for foreign affairs. In consequence of certain persons, subjects of Persia, negotiating and transferring some of their old, unjust, and irrecoverable claims to citizens of foreign Governments, causing loss and damage to traders, and producing confusion in the proceedings of the courts of justice and disorganizing trade, besides violating the solemn rights of the Government and otherwise causing annoyance and inconvenience, His Majesty has ordered that these negotiations and transfers are to be considered as groundless and entirely null and void until, according to international engagements, the papers or documents have the indubitable seat of the foreign oflice, and on the faith of that security the legation legalizes them. It is therefore evident that the honorable legation will give strict injunctions to its subjects that this matter inay be unquestionably complied with and by no means allowed to continue, lest the claim (by the foreign citizen) be refused,

It is furthermore hoped that the honorable legation will have this subject in mind and so help to put a stop to the irregularity. We give no further trouble at this time.

Dated 9 Rubi-ul-avval (20th of September), A. H. 1311.
[Seal of the Kavam-ed-Dowlah, minister for foreign affairs.]

Mr. Gresham to Mr. McDonald.

No. 26.)

DEPARTMENT OF STATE,

Washington, November 11, 1893. SIR: I have received your No. 21 of 25th September last and the copy therewith of a memorandum of the Persian foreign office on the subject "of Persian subjects transferring their claims" to subjects of other powers in order that the claims may be recovered through the legation of the transferees. I have to say with reference thereto that this Government will never recognize an assignment of a claim against a foreign country made by a citizen or subject of that country to a citizen of this for the purpose of invoking diplomatic aid in the recovery thereof. Still less will it undertake to aid in the recovery of claims against subjects of foreign countries which originally accrned in favor of their fellowsubjects and have been assigned by the latter to American citizens. Your action is therefore approved. I am, etc.,

W. R. GRESHAM.

Mr. McDonald to Mr. Gresham.

No. 57.]

LEGATION OF THE UNITED STATES, Teheran, Persia, January 11, 1894. (Received February 17.) SIR: I have the honor to transmit herewith a copy of the translation of the memorandum sent from the foreign office respecting the taxation of foreigners engaged in various trades in Persia, and a copy of the translation of the reply thereto. I am, etc.,

ALEX. McDONALD.

[Iuclosure 1 in No. 57.)

Memorandum from the Persian foreign office.. It has been decreed that all subjects of foreign powers engaged in the different tradės and businesses of and residing in Persia shall pay the ordinary assessed taxes, in the same proportion as the natives of the country.

As the various legations of foreign countries have sent in the names of their subjects employed in the trades, it is respectfully requested that the legation (the United States) will also send into the foreign office a list of its subjects, that regulations may be issued regarding them.

[Seal of the Kavam-ed-Dowlah, minister of foreign affairs.]

[Inclosure 2 in No. 57.]
Memorandum from United States legation in reply to the above.

LEGATION OF THE UNITED STATES,

Teheran, January 10, 1894. In reply to the memorandum of the imperial foreign office, dated the 28th of Jamadi-es-Sani, corresponding to the 5th of January, respecting the taxation of foreigners engaged in the various trades of Persia, this legation begs to report, for the information of the foreign office, that, having made careful inquiries, it finds that throughout Persia there are no citizens of the United States engaged in any of the taxable trades referred to in the memorandum.

ALEX, McDONALD.

ASSIGNMENTS OF CLAIMS BY PERSIAN SUBJECTS TO FOREIGNERS.

Mr. McDonald to Mr. Gresham.

No. 21.]

LEGATION OF THE UNITED STATES, Teheran, September 25, 1893. (Received November 3.) SIR: I have the honor to inclose for your information a copy and translation of a circular memorandum, received from the Persian foreign minister on the 22d instant.

The practice to which the memorandum refers is of long standing. When a Persian subject fails. to recover a claim from a fellow.citizen to which he thinks he has a bona fide right, he very often transfers the documents relating to the claim to the citizen of a foreign state for some valuable consideration or on the pretext that the transferee has some counter claim against him to the full or even a greater amount. The purchaser or transferee then presses the claim through the inter: mediary of his legation, and, rightly or wrongly, very often succeeds in recovering the whole of the claim.

I have no reason to think that any United States citizen bas ever resorted or will ever resort to this practice, either to prevent an injustice or to make profit; yet I have nevertheless sent a copy of the memorandum to each of the missions in Persia, so as to prevent misunderstanding. I have, etc.,

ALEX. MCDONALD.

(Inclosure in No. 21.- Translation.]

Memorandum from the minister for foreign affairs. In consequence of certain persons, subjects of Persia, negotiating and transferring some of their old, unjust, and irrecoverable claims to citizens of foreign Governments, causing loss and damage to traders, and producing confusion in the proceedings of the courts of justice and disorganizing trade, besides violating the solemn rights of the Government and otherwise causing annoyance and inconvenience, His Majesty has ordered that these negotiations and transfers are to be considered as groundless and entirely null and void until, according to international engagements, the papers or documents have the indubi. table seat of the foreign office, and on the faith of that security the legation legalizes them. It is therefore evident that the honorable legation will give strict injunctions to its subjects that this matter may be unquestionably complied with and by no means allowed to continue, lest the claim (by the foreign citizen) be refused.

It is furthermore hoped that the honorable legation will have this subject in mind and so help to put a stop to the irregularity. We give no further trouble at this time.

Dated 9 Rubi-ul-avval (20th of September), A. H. 1311.
[Seal of the Kavam-ed-Dowlah, minister for foreign affairs.]

Mr. Gresham to Mr. McDonald.

No. 26.]

DEPARTMENT OF STATE,

Washington, November 11, 1893. Sır: I have received your No. 21 of 25th September last and the copy therewith of a memorandum of the Persian foreign office on the subject "of Persian subjects transferring their claims" to subjects of other powers in order that the claims may be recovered through the legation of the transferees. I have to say with reference thereto that this Government will never recognize an assignment of a claim against a foreign country made by a citizen or subject of that country to a citizen of this for the purpose of invoking diplomatic aid in the recovery thereof. Still less will it undertake to aid in the recovery of claims against subjects of foreign countries which originally accrued in favor of their fellowsubjects and have been assigned by the latter to American citizens. Your action is therefore approved. I am, etc.,

W, Q. GRESHAM.

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