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WAR DEPARTMENT, Washington, December 17, 1898. The following order of the President is published for the information and guidance of all concerned:

EXECUTIVE MANSION, December 13, 1898.

By virtue of the authority vested in me as Commander in Chief of the Army and Navy of the United States of America, I do hereby order and direct that the following tariff of duties and taxes shall be levied and collected and the regulations for the administration thereof shall take effect and be in force in all ports and places in the island of Cuba and all islands in the West Indies west of the seventy-fourth degree, west longitude, evacuated by Spain, on and after January 1, 1899.

All questions arising in the administration of customs shall be referred to the collector at the port of Havana for decision, and there shall be no appeal from such decision except in cases where the collector may find it expedient to ask for special instructions of the War Department on the points involved.

Necessary and authorized expenses for the administration of said tariff and regulations shall be paid from the collections thereunder.

Accurate accounts of collections and expenditures shall be kept and rendered to the Secretary of War.


The above order and the following tariff of duties and taxes prescribed thereunder will be proclaimed and enforced, as therein provided, and all regulations and orders heretofore issued inconsistent herewith are hereby repealed.

Acting Secretary of War.



1. The port of Havana has been duly designated as the chief customs port of Cuba, and the following have been declared to be subports, viz: Matanzas, Cardenas, Cienfuegos, Sagua, Caibarien, Santiago, Manzanillo, Neuvitas, Guantanamo, Gibara, Baracoa, Trinidad, Santa Cruz, Zaza, and Batabano, in the island of Cuba, and the officer of the Army duly assigned to each of said ports as collector will have general jurisdiction of the collection of customs at such ports, respectively. Every collector stationed at a subport will make weekly reports to the collector at Havana of all transactions at his subport, with copies of all entries of merchandise duly certified, and all moneys collected at subports must be deposited with the duly designated officer, whose receipt there for must be taken in duplicate. Any questions arising at any subport will be referred to the collector at Havana for his decision, from which there shall be no appeal, except in such cases as he may refer for decision to the Secretary of War.


2. Every vessel shall, on arrival, be placed under customs control until duly discharged. Passengers with no dutiable property in their possession may be permitted to land without detention. If any merchandise be found on board any vessel which is not included in her manifest produced as required by these regulations, the master shall forfeit an amount equal to the value of the merchandise not manifested, and all such merchandise belonging to or consigned to the officers or crew of the vessel shall be forfeited. These forfeitures shall not be incurred, however, if it shall be made to appear to the principal customs officer at the port that the errors and omissions in the manifest were made without intention of fraud or collusion. In

Regulations and guidance of officers, etc.—Continued.

such case the master may be allowed to correct his manifest by means of a post entry. Should any package or article named on the manifest be missing on the arrival of the vessel, or if the merchandise on board does not otherwise agree with the manifest delivered by the master, except as above prescribed, the master shall be liable to a penalty of $500; but if it is made to appear to the satisfaction of the principal customs officer at the port that no part whatever of the merchandise of such vessel has been unshipped, landed, or unladen since it was taken on board, except as specified in the manifest, and pursuant to permits, or that the disagreement is by accident or mistake, in such case the penalty shall not be inflicted.

3. Within twenty-four hours after the arrival of any vessel the master must, under a penalty for failure of $1 per ton registry measurement, produce to the proper officer a manifest of her cargo, with the marks, numbers, and description of the packages and the names of the respective consignees, which manifests, if the vessel be from a port in the United States, shall be certified by the collector of the port of sailing. If the vessel be from any other than a United States port her manifest must be certified by the United States consul or commercial agent at such port; if there be no United States consul or commercial agent at such port, then by the consul of any nation at peace with the United States, and if there be no such consul, then by two resident merchants of good reputation; and the register of the vessel shall, upon her arrival in Cuba, be deposited with the consul of the nation to which she may belong, if any there be; otherwise with the collector of customs at the port, until the master shall have paid such tonnage taxes and other port charges as may be due under these regulations.1

4. No vessel shall be allowed to clear for another port until all her cargo shall be landed or accounted for. All goods not duly entered for payment of duty within five days after their arrival in port shall be landed and stored, the expense thereof to be charged against the goods.

5. Prior to the departure of any vessel from any of the ports herein designated, the master shall deposit with the proper officer a manifest of the outward cargo of such vessel, specifying the marks and numbers of packages, a description of their contents, with names of shippers and consignees, with a statement of the value of each separate lot; also names of passengers and their destination. A clearance will then be granted to the vessel. No prohibited or contraband goods shall be exported.

5. No merchandise shall be brought into Cuba in a vessel measuring less than 30 tons gross in capacity.


6. At all ports or places in Cuba there shall be levied the following tonnage dues until further orders:

Per net ton.



(a) On entry of a vessel from a port or place not in Cuba
(b) On entry of a vessel from another port or place in Cuba, engaged at the
time of entry in the coasting trade of Cuba...

(c) The rate of tonnage dues on a vessel which enters in ballast shall be onehalf of the rate imposed by subdivision (a) or (b), and one-half the tonnage dues imposed on a vessel entering with cargo shall be refunded if the vessel clears in ballast.

(d) A vessel which has paid the tonnage tax imposed on entry from a port or place not in Cuba shall not be liable to tonnage tax on entering another port or place in Cuba during the same voyage until such vessel again enters from a port or place not in Cuba.

(e) The tonnage tax on entries of a vessel from a port or place not in Cuba shall not exceed in the aggregate $2 per net ton in any one year, beginning from the date of the first payment.

The tonnage tax on entries of a vessel from other ports or places in
Cuba, engaged at the time of entry exclusively in the coasting trade of
Cuba, shall not exceed 40 cents per net ton in any one year, beginning
from the date of the first payment.

7. The following shall be exempt from tonnage dues:

A vessel belonging to or employed in the service of the Government of the United States, or a vessel of a neutral foreign Government not engaged in trade, a vessel in distress, or a yacht belonging to an organized yacht club of the United States or of a neutral foreign nation.

8. The tonnage of a vessel shall be the net or register tonnage expressed in her national certificate of registry.

1 According to a War Department circular of March 22, 1899, all registry fees imposed for documenting foreign-built vessels in Cuba are abolished.

Regulations and guidance of officers, etc.-Continued.


The tax of $1 on each ton of merchandise imported or exported, hitherto imposed as a substitute for tonnage taxes, is abolished.

The present exemption of coal from this tax is continued.

The present export tax of 5 cents per gross ton on ore is abolished.


The harbor improvement taxes at all ports of entry in Cuba will be levied as follows:

Each steamer entering....

Each sailing vessel entering.

Each ton of cargo landed from a steamer

Each ton of cargo landed from a sailing vessel.

Each ton of coal landed from a steamer.

Each ton of coal landed from a sailing vessel





To facilitate the occupation and control of Cuba by the military forces of the United States and the restoration of order, the laws now in force restricting the coasting trade of the island to Spanish vessels are hereby modified as follows:

(a) Vessels of the United States may engage in the coasting trade of the island of Cuba.




(b) The officer of the Army of the United States in command at any port of Cuba in possession of the United States is empowered to issue a permit to a resident of Cuba who owns a vessel, which shall entitle such vessel to engage in the coasting trade of the island; Provided, That the owner and master of such vessel shall, upon oath before such officer, entirely renounce and abjure all allegiance and fidelity to the King of Spain, or to any other foreign prince, state, or sovereignty whatever. And provided further, That any resident in Cuba of any nationality, and also any citizen of the United States, may serve as master on such vessel without renouncing and abjuring his allegiance or nationality. Such person, however, shall be required to make and sign an oath in Spanish or English, at his option, as follows:


I, -, master of the vessel measuring tons, swear that during my service as master the permit granted to said vessel to engage in the coasting trade of the island of Cuba shall not be used for any other vessel, or in any trade or business whereby the revenue of the island shall be defrauded, and that I will obey the laws and regulations prescribed by the properly constituted authorities of said island.

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Such permits shall first be approved by the general in command of the forces of the United States in Cuba.


Vessels entitled under this paragraph to engage in the coasting trade of Cuba shall carry a distinctive signal, which shall be a blue flag, and the union of the flag shall be a white field.

The form and manner of the issue of permits provided for in this paragraph shall be prescribed by the Secretary of War.

9. All imported merchandise must be entered at the custom-house of the port of arrival, either for immediate consumption or in bond, by the person holding a bill of lading which names him as the consignee or a bill of lading indorsed to his order by the consignee named therein. A banker holding a bill of lading as security for advances of money may transfer the same, by indorsement, to the actual importer. Underwriters will be recognized as consignees of merchandise abandoned to them and salvors as consignees of merchandise found by them derelict at sea.

A consignee holding a bill of lading drawn to his order or assigns may transfer the same to any person who can lawfully make the required declarations on entry, and the holder of a bill of lading drawn in blank, "to order," and indorsed by the shipper or consignor, may make entry of the merchandise specified therein.

Whenever, from evidence furnished by the invoice or bill of lading, or, as in the case of custom-house brokers and forwarders, by the known business of the parties making entry, the collector has reason to believe that the consignees named in the bill of lading are, in fact, intermediary agents for the delivery of the merchandise to the ultimate consignees or real owners, there shall be required upon the entry a statement of the names of such ultimate consignees, and bonds must be taken for the production of the declaration of the owner or real importer. And collectors will,

Regulations and guidance of officers, etc.-Continued.

whenever they consider it expedient, require such ultimate consignees or owners to produce any invoices or bills of sale pertaining to the importation which they may have in their possession.

10. Merchandise of which entry is not perfected at the expiration of the period allowed by these regulations for the discharge of cargo of the importing vessel will be taken possession of by the collector as unclaimed and placed in store, to be disposed of as hereinafter provided.

Unless otherwise specially provided by regulation, duties accrue upon imported merchandise on arrival of the importing vessel within a customs port with intent to unlade.

11. Entries for bonding may be made either for placing the merchandise in warehouse or for its constructive warehousing and immediate transportation to other ports without appraisement; and merchandise in warehouse may be withdrawn either for consumption, for exportation, for transportation to another port, and rewarehousing. Two of these objects may in some cases be combined in one withdrawal. Whenever goods are so transported in bond without appraisement, they must be consigned to the care of the collector or acting collector at the port of destination, who will allow entry to be made at his port by the actual consignee.

12. Entries shall be in duplicate in writing, according to prescribed form, and shall be signed by the importer or his duly authorized agent, and shall declare the names of the importing vessel and her master, her port of departure and date of arrival, the number and marks of packages, or the quantity, if in bulk, and the nature of the merchandise contained therein; also the value thereof as set forth in an invoice to be presented with the entry, with all costs incident to placing the same, packed, ready for shipment to Cuba.

13. Every invoice must represent a distinct shipment to one consignee or firm of consignees by one vessel. If by reason of accident or short shipment a portion thereof should fail to arrive, an extract from the original invoice, certified by the collector, may be used for entering the remaining packages, but the consolidation of separate shipments on one invoice shall not be permitted. Invoices must be made out on firm and durable paper and legibly written in ink, and must contain the quantities of the merchandise in the weights and measures of the country of exportation. Press copies shall not be accepted for customs purposes.

14. The description on the entry of the merchandise shall be in terms of the tariff and in the currency of the invoice, and the values of the several classes of merchandise shall be separately placed under their respective rates of duty, as claimed by the importer, and the totals of each class duly shown. The rates of duty thus stated on the entry shall be advisory only, and shall not govern the collector's classification for the assessment of duty.

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15. For the assessment of duty, the currency of the invoice must be reduced to the money of account of the United States upon the basis of the values of foreign coins, as proclaimed by the Secretary of the Treasury on the first days of January,

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Regulations and guidance of officers, etc.-Continued.

April, July, and October of each year. The date of the invoice will indicate the value of the currency.

Where an invoice is made out in Spanish silver pesetas, and accompanied by a consular certificate showing the equivalent value thereof in Spanish gold pesetas, then the duty thereon may be assessed on the basis of the Spanish gold peseta.

When the standard value of a foreign coin has not been thus proclaimed, any invoice expressed in such coin must be accompanied by a consular certificate showing its value in standard gold dollars of the United States.

16. Every invoice, as soon as entered, shall be stamped with the date of the entry and certified by the signature of the collector; and the officers whose duty it is will compare the classification made by the importer with the description given in the invoice, and will see that the merchandise is entered at the rates provided by the tariff. Entries and all papers pertaining thereto, respectively, will be designated by a serial number.

The rates of duty charged upon entry and the entered value shall be indorsed on the invoice, which shall be stamped with the date of entry and name of the vessel of importation.

17. The consignee named in the bill of lading, or the person to whom such consignee shall, by indorsement, have assigned the bill of lading, shall present to the collector or other officer of the customs duly designated for that purpose by the military authority, his bill of lading, an invoice describing the goods, showing their character, quantity, and cost, together with an entry in duplicate showing the name of the importer and of the vessel of importation, the place whence the goods were imported, the date of their arrival at the port of destination, the marks and numbers of the packages, the nature and quantity of their contents, their value, including costs incurred in packing them for shipment, and the currency in which the invoices were made out. The invoice must be made out in the currency of the country of exportation, and must be verified by the oath of the shipper; and where no consul, commercial agent, or notary is resident at the port of exportation the verification of the invoice herein required must be made by two resident merchants of good reputation. The entry shall be signed by the importer, who must make affidavit to the truth of all the statements contained therein, and shall agree in value and description with the facts shown by the invoice.

18. After the packages and contents have been duly compared with the invoice and found to agree therewith, the duty due thereon will be computed on the face of the entry; and only after the payment of the proper duties and charges, an order for the delivery of the packages and contents will be issued by the proper officer.

19. Any objections to the assessment of duty must be filed by the importer before the payment by him of the same; and no refund of duty will be made thereafter, except when specially ordered by the general in command.

20. The collector of the port shall cause to be examined not less than 10 per cent of the packages comprised in any one invoice, and shall satisfy himself of the nature and quantity of the contents. The examining officer shall indorse upon the invoice, in red ink, his report as to the dutiable character and value of the merchandise; and this report shall be the basis for the exaction of duty by the collector.

21. Goods found to be fraudulently entered, either as to valne, quantity, or character, shall be forfeited to the Government, and any goods which have been the subject of an attempt to import into Cuba without going through the custom-house shall be seized and confiscated.

22. Entries of merchandise covered by any one invoice may be made simultaneously for both consumption and warehouse. Where an intent to export the merchandise is shown by the bill of lading and invoice, the whole or a part of an invoice not less than one package may be entered for "warehouse and immediate export." In this case the collector may designate the vessel in which the merchandise is laden as constructively a "warehouse," in order to facilitate the direct transfer of the goods to the exporting vessel. The same procedure may apply to goods entered for warehouse and immediate transportation."

23. Any goods, wares, or merchandise not duly entered within ninety days after importation shall be sold at auction by order of the officer in command of the United States forces, after five days' public notice, conspicuously posted at the port: Provided, That the period of ninety days may be extended by said officer not exceeding a period of six months from the date of importation, when good and sufficient reasons therefor are presented to him, if in his judgment the interests of the Government will permit of such extension. The proceeds of such sale will be kept for ten days, subject to the demand of the importer, after deduction of the proper duties on the goods and all expenses of storage and sale.

21. All seized and confiscated merchandise shall be sold in like manner, and the proceeds, after deduction of expenses, shall be turned over to the collector or other officer of the customs duly designated for that purpose.

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