New York, N.Y.,
December 26, 1940.
,James N, Rosenberg, President,
Dominican Republic Settlement Association,
165 Broadway, New York, N.Y.
My dear Rosenberg:
When President Roosevelt convoked the Evian conference
of thirty two nations, in order to consider the situation of the refugees, I had the privilege of offering, through the medium of our diplomatic representative, the entrance to the Dominican Republic, of which I was then President,
of some hundred thousand refugees, with the desire that
they would establish themselves under conditions which would
facilitate their development.
It was in relation to this project that I arrived at
an accord between the Dominican Republic and the association
directed .by you, on January 30 of this year, and then gave my best attention and interest to this work. I was pleased
by the solid and healthy progress which was shown until the European war caused the slowing up of transportation, which
we both lament.
It was for me a cause of much satisfaction to see as
a fact, the success with which immigrants from the north
of Europe have been able to prosper under the conditions of
health established by your organization, and by the
projects elaborated by Dr. Rosen, Mr. Falk, you and other
collaborators together with the Dominican Republic, by which
some 1000 robust colonists will be established during the
It was also a cause of much satisfaction that I could
contribute my estate of Sosua in order that this work could
commence within the year. At this time I stated that 1
would cooperate with you in order to facilitate the
acquisition of lands adjacent to, or in the immediate vicinity of Sosua, always contingent upon the landowners being
willing to sell, In this regard, I know that Dr. Rosen has in mind certain nearby fertile lands which would be necessary for the amplification of this project. I am, therefore,
very glad to assure you that if the resources of the
Settlement Association are sufficient to carry out the
establishment of 1,000 more colonists during the year 1941, 1 will take the necessary measures and will personally take charge to assure the association *of adequate adjacent or nearby lands of up to 50,000 acres@
Knowing that your association is not disposed to
accept these lands gratuitously but would desire that I have an issue of stock in accord with your corporation, and to arrange for the necessary capital for its purchase; and that you have adopted this attitude so that the project will not have an aspect of charity but, on the contrary, will impress the colonists that, in due time, they must pay for their land* I am in accord with these criteria and join you in your- belief that the day will come when the colonists will satisfy these requisites; therefore I am prepared, in accord with your 'recommendations, that a moderate quantity of stock be distributed by the Settlement Association in exchange for these lands.
There is one subject, nevertheless, about which I
must insist* I recommend that for the maintenance of the health and general well being of the colonists, they must have access to some region in the mountains where they can go for brief periods of rest and relaxation. I possess some lands in the Cordilleras Dominicanas of some hundreds of acres, accesible by automobile in approximately two hours from Sosuao These lands are at an altitude of about three thousand feet above sea level, and are situated in mountains of great beauty, which I desire to present as a free contribution to the association where they can arrange to erect some modest houses where the colonists can go to seek recreation and breathe the fresh air of the mountains.
I am indeed sorry that my official functions dealing with my country oblige me to remain in Washington during the month of January, and therefore it will not be possible for me to assist I n the celebration of the first anniversary of the accord between your society and the Dominican Government, which will take place on January 30, but I would be glad if you would present this letter at the reunion in Sosua on that date, and express to your collaborators my hearty thanks and the reaffirmation of my personal belief in the continued success of this grand and humanitarian work.
My colleague and friend, Manuel de Jesu'is Troncoso de
la Concha, President of the Dominican Republic, has consented to personally assist at the ceremony of Sosua, also other functionaries of the Government.
Permit me to reiterate what I stated in January:
my country obeys not only humanitarian impulses, but also a belief in the necessity of having robust, healthy and diligent immigrants such as those the Settlement Association has selected, and who constitute a most valuable element in the development of the wealth of our country. At the same time I desire to reiterate that, not only in the governmental circles of the Dominican Republic, but in all the country, our people jubilantly receive this well intentioned, organized and constructive force.
it is very clear to students of international affairs, that one of the causes of the present chaos in Europe is the excess of population. In our country we hope to demonstrate, with the success of this project of colonization, the manner of solution, even if only partially, of this problem of great magnitude.
I am gratified to learn that Mr. Robert T. Pell, of the Department of State of the United States; Mr. George
L. Warren, Executive Secretary of the President's Advisory Comfiittee on Political Refugees; Mr. Alfred Wagg, Acting Secretary of the Intergovernmental Committee, and Mr. Leon Falk, Jr., Director of your organization, are participating with you in the celebration of January 30. 1 hope that they, as well as all who assist them, will accept my cordial salutations, and the testimony of my great appreciation for their cooperation in this constructive work.