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desiring to marry French women, I have the honor to inform you that the War Department states that the 96th Article of War provides for the punishment of soldiers committing bigamy or uttering false affidavits.

For your information the Department may state that the 96th Article of War above referred to provides as follows:

ART. 96. General Article.—Though not mentioned in these articles, all disorders and neglects to the prejudice of good order and military discipline, all conduct of a nature to bring discredit upon the military service, and all crimes or offenses not capital, of which persons subject to military law may be guilty, shall be taken cognizance of by a general or special or summary courtmartial, according to the nature and degree of the offense, and

punished at the discretion of such court. As regards the prosecution of a soldier after his discharge from the military service and his return to the United States in case he has been guilty of perjury or bigamy in connection with the marriage ceremony in France, relative to which you suggest that a bill be introduced in Congress providing for the prosecution of such a soldier upon his return to this country, the War Department now informs me that a bill is being drawn up for submission to Congress that will cover the cases of soldiers who are discharged before they can be brought to trial for bigamy in France. Accept [etc.]

ROBERT LANSING

File No. 851.4054/26

The French Ambassador (Jusserand) to the Secretary of State

[Translation]

WASHINGTON, November 7, 1918.

[Received November 9.] MR. SECRETARY OF STATE: I took pains to communicate to my Government the contents of the letter which Your Excellency was pleased to address to me on the 14th of September last, with respect to the repression of false declarations that might be made by American soldiers on the occasion of their marrying French women.

Upon perusal of that communication the Government of the Republic wishes me to inquire of Your Excellency whether you would be willing to exchange with me notes making now a record of the agreement of the two Governments on the principles recognized by them in the matter.

In my Government's opinion the note, of which a copy is enclosed, together with the answer it calls for constitute the agreement that

1

*Post, p. 774.

might be made public through an insertion on the same day in the official journals of the two countries.

I should be thankful to Your Excellency if you would kindly let me know as soon as possible whether this proceeding meets with the approval of the Federal Government. Be pleased to accept [etc.]

JUSSERAND

[Enclosure-Translation]

Draft of Proposed Note from the French Ambassador (Jusserand)

to the Secretary of State

MR. SECRETARY OF STATE: According to the correspondence exchanged between us on the subject of formalities to be provided in order that every possible guarantee be given to the validity of their marriage to young French women sought in marriage by soldiers of the American Army, the Federal Government has evinced a disposition to furnish the following guarantees : 1. Production by the American soldier contemplating matri

mony of a paper containing an affidavit sworn to before the Army Judge Advocate with respect to his civil con

dition and ability to marry; 2. Certificate of the officer in command of the unit to which

the future husband belongs and insuring the accuracy

of his declarations; 3. In the case of divorce, production of the certificate of the

competent court showing that a decree of divorce has been

issued and that the decision is final. Besides the formalities knowledge of which should be given to the bride there would be two guarantees of another order: First. Notification to The Adjutant General of the Army at

Washington of all marriages of American soldiers in

French territory;
Next. The bill which the Federal Government proposes to intro-

duce in Congress and by virtue of which any perjury
committed in an affidavit relative to the said marriage
would be repressed upon the return to America of the

soldier guilty of that criminal act [sic]. The Government of the Republic is thankful to the Federal Government for the attention it kindly gave to this question and the care with which it has taken appropriate measures to remedy abuses from which some of our country-women might have suffered.

In order to be enabled to make these useful provisions apt to facilitate marriages of French women and Americans publicly known my Government expresses a wish to receive an official assurance that they exist.

I therefore have the honor to ask of Your Excellency that you kindly confirm the above stated indications which, save error or omission on my part, appear to sum up the whole of the rules laid down for the marriages which American soldiers may happen to contract in France.

File No. 851.4054/26

The Secretary of State to the French Ambassador (Jusserand) No. 2289

WASHINGTON, November 27, 1918. EXCELLENCY: Referring to, previous correspondence relating to the marriage of members of the American military forces in France to French women, and to the repression of false declarations that might be made by American soldiers in connection therewith, I have the honor to acknowledge the receipt of your note dated November 7, 1918, in which you state that your Government desires to be informed whether the Government of the United States would be willing to exchange notes with you making now a record of the agreement of the two Governments of the principles recognized by them in this matter, with which note you transmitted a copy of the draft of a note which your Government suggests it is ready to address to this Government.

This Government believes that it is desirable to include in the arrangement contemplated not only members of the Army of the United States abroad, but members of all the forces of the United States abroad, and with this in view it has requested that the Navy Department, as well as the War Department, consider the matter and also the definite suggestions of the French Government relating to the administration of the arrangements as set forth in the draft of the proposed note.

I shall take pleasure in further communicating to you the views of this Government upon receipt of replies to the letters which I have addressed to the Navy Department and the War Department relating to this matter. Accept [etc.]

ROBERT LANSING

File No. 851.4054/30
The Acting Secretary of State to the French Chargé (De Chambrun)

WASHINGTON, February 3, 1919. SIR: I have the honor to refer to the Ambassador's note of November 7, 1918, and to previous correspondence, regarding marriages of members of the American military forces in France to French women.

In this communication of November 7 the Ambassador submitted a draft of a note, which together with the answer it called for, was proposed as the agreement in this matter. I submitted the proposed agreement to the proper authorities of the Army and Navy of the United States and have received replies from these Departments from which it appears that it is desirable to extend the proposed agreement to include within its scope all persons in the military or naval forces of the United States on foreign service, and all persons in an auxiliary organization functioning in connection with the military or naval forces of the United States while on foreign service. In order that you may have a statement of the understanding of this Government as to what persons will be subject to the proposed agreement and to the regulations which will be prescribed by the Secretary of War and the Secretary of the Navy, I enclose herewith a copy of the draft of a bill which it is proposed to introduce in Congress to empower the authorities of this Government to enforce the provisions of the agreement.

If the changes which I have suggested are acceptable to the Government of the French Republic, I shall be glad if you will advise me in order that steps may be taken to prepare the agreement. Accept [etc.] For the Acting Secretary of State:

ALVEY A. ADEE

[Enclosure]

Draft of a Proposed Bill to Regulate the Marriage of Persons in the

Military and Naval Forces of the United States in Foreign Countries, and for Other Purposes

Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled, That for the purposes of this act, unless the context otherwise requires,

SECTION 1. The term “person in the military or naval forces” shall be held to include:

(a) Every person, whether commissioned, warranted, appointed, enlisted, enrolled, drafted, or serving otherwise in the Army, Navy, or Marine Corps;

(6) Every person, whether commissioned, warranted, appointed, enlisted, enrolled, drafted, or serving otherwise in the Coast Guard, Lighthouse Service, Coast and Geodetic Survey, and Public Health Service, serving, pursuant to law, with the Army or the Navy.

Sec. 2. The term “ person in an auxiliary organization” shall be held to include every male or female citizen of the United States attached to and serving with any one or more of the following, viz.: American Red Cross, Young Men's Christian Association, Young Women's Christian Association, Salvation Army, Knights of Columbus, and Hebrew Welfare Board, and with any other similar, civil. auxiliary, organization engaged in the work of aiding or entertaining the forces of the United States.

Sec. 3. The term “foreign service” shall be held to include all service outside the limits of the United States, its territories and possessions; and the term “foreign country” shall be held to include any country other than the United States, its territories and possessions.

SEC. 4. That every person in the military or naval forces of the United States while on foreign service, or in an auxiliary organization functioning in connection with the military or naval forces of the United States in a foreign country, shall, prior to contracting marriage in any foreign country, execute and subscribe an affidavit, in such form as may be prescribed by the Secretary of War and the Secretary of the Navy, in duplicate before an officer of the military or naval forces of the United States, authorized to administer oaths, in which affidavit the person desiring to marry shall make oath that he has attained the age of 21 years if male, or that she has attained the age of 18 years if female, and that he or she is unmarried, and knows of no reason why he or she may not lawfully contract matrimony, and said affidavit shall further contain a complete description of affiant, the date and place of his or her entry into the military or naval forces of the United States, or into the auxiliary organization of which he or she is a member, a statement as to whether he or she is a natural born or naturalized citizen of the United States, and if natural born said affidavit shall state the date and place of his or her birth, and if naturalized it shall state the date and place of naturalization; and such other matters as may be specified in the regulations that may be prescribed to carry into effect the provisions of this act. Provided, That an alien serving in the military or naval forces of the United States on foreign service, shall be subject to the provisions of this act in like manner and under like conditions and penalties as a native born citizen so serving. Provided further, That the officer in command of the unit to which the person making the affidavit is attached shall immediately after the making of said affidavit cause the available records of said unit to be examined and, if such examination does not disclose that any of the statements in said affidavit are untrue, shall thereupon certify that he believes the statements therein to be true, and that he is one of the superior officers of the affiant. One original copy of said affidavit and certificate shall be filed with and become a part of the records of the unit to which the affiant is attached and the other original copy thereof together with a transla

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