One of the important questions which will be taken up for consideration by the State Dept. relates to the pending negotiations for the stopping absolutely of pelagic sealing. For the first time since the negotiations to that end were instituted, several years ago, there is now a prospect of an end being put to the unreasonable destruction of seal life. The seal herd, it is now known, numbers about two hundred and twenty thousand, having been reduced to that number from 4 million only a comparatively few years ago. The North American Commercial Co. is permitted by the United States to take 15 thousand seals each year on the Pribiloff Islands under restrictions which have rendered it impossible for the co. to take the maximum quota of the seals for several years. Canada has hesitated to enter into an agreement because Canadians were the owners of a large fleet of pelagic sealing vessels, but the State Dept. officials believe now that an agreement will shortly be reached. If such an agreement should be effected, Japan also will probably agree to cease pelagic sealing.

Owing to the failure of the Cuban Govt. to reach an agreement with the insurgent representatives through the kindly offices of the United States Govt., an American provisional Govt. assumed possession of Cuba on the 25 th ult., when Secretary Taft's proclamation, declaring himself provisional governor of the island, was formally published in the Official Gazette. The terms of the proclamation caused general satisfaction. The Cuban flag was not lowered. This establishes a precedent on provisional governments and protectorates.

On the 25th ult., in the presence of a distinguished gathering, the new buildings in Boston of the Harvard Medical School were dedicated with special ceremonies. The new school comprises five buildings all of Vermont marble, and built in the classic Roman style around a quadrangle. The buildings were erected at a cost of $5,000,000 and have been three years in process of construction.

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October 6, 1906

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