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AMCRICA U CROSS QCAL rHOTO V JTWr jHSRaHHKA V Claims That Yielding to Serbian Sovereignty Was Effected by Duress Mr. Dix, who is secretary of the Mutual Life Insurance Company of New York, formerly an editor and author, has recently been honored by King Nicholas of Montenegro by being decorated with the Grand Cross of the Order of Danilo I. for his services as its representative in the United States. He accepted these duties and responsibilities with the approval of President Wilson and Secretary of State Lansing because of his admiration (or the struggle for existence of the small and oppressed country and Aa desire to aid it in its time of need. By WILLIAM FREDERICK DIX. Royal Consul-General of Montenegro in New York, Charge d'Affairei Montene grin Legation in Washington. WHY la It that heroic little Monte negro, who, on August 9, 1914, flung her entire nrmy of 45,000 men against the Austrians, fighting gal lantly In defence of her own country and aiding the Serbian retreat, has been so con tinuously snubbed by the Allies? Austria scattered the Montenegrin army, because tho latter had little modern equipment, no air service whateM-r und no Red Cross. Tho country was overrun and the royal family and court were forced to seek asylum In France. Why Is It that In spite of the assurances of the French Government that His Majesty would be restored to his country upon the successful ending of the war he Is still an exile and his country is occupied by Serbian troops? Self-Rule Promised Balkan States. Viscount Grey stated on November 9, 1916: "The policy of the Allies is to further the national aspirations of the Balkan States without sacrificing the independence of any of them." President Wilson in his message of January 8. 19t7,and later in his despatch to King Nicholas, mentioned as one of the conditions of peace "the restoration of Mon tenegro on thu same conditions as applied to Belgium and Serbia." Yet Montenegro was absolutely denied a seat at the peace table, she Is left without funds, the King Is In re tirement nnd the court at Ncuilly, near Paris, Is left stranded and In desperate straits. This country formally recognized Monte ncero when her envoy, Gen. Antolno Gvos ilenovltch, was received in November. 191'. Hut the legation at Washington Is now .closed. Its affairs have been placed In my hands, and there Is an undoubted Impression abroad that Montenegro Is to be absorbed by Serbia. If President Wilson's doctrine of the self-determination of nations is to pre vail, this absorption by the more powerful neighbor State should not be allowed, for It does not seem to be human nature that the Montenegrins, who have heroically and gal lantly fought for and maintained their Inde pendence for 600 years, should want to sacri fice their autonomy now. The Serbians would have It appear that the people have already voted to Join Serbia, but I have been assured on high authority that this vote was taken under duress; that tho Serbians, who have overrun the country, resorted to violent means to compel thls-vMe, and from what I havo seen of Balkan affairs and what I have been told about the devious methods of the well paid members of the Serbian Intrigue I believe this to bo true. I havo heard the Serbian side and I havo heard tho Montenegrin side, and believe that If Montenegro were to-day left free to decide her destiny she would, almost to a man, vote to join the .lugo-Slav confederation as an autonomous State, and I also believo that In choosing her own form of government she would recall King Nicholas to his throne and to his former power. At the Altar or Liberty. In October, 1918, Montenegro sent a duly accredited Minister, Gen. Gvosdenovltch, to this country with attaches. A legation In Washington was opened, and the Minister was formally received by President Wilson. Montenegro was then destitute. Tho royal family and court received a small annual stipend from France and England, but the country was In gsat need of food and clothing. I had tho pleasure of Introducing Gen. Gvosdenovltch to a number of New York's most eminent financiers, who received him with great courtesy, and he was In high hopes for a time of receiving some financial assistance from this country cither in the . form of a loan from our Government or In the form of contributions from some of our organizations for European relief. I took him to various Liberty Loan rallies, where ho saw our rich men bid for Liberty bonds by the millions. He lived for a week or more In the atmosphere of millions. On Montenegro Day, when he made his address at the Altar of Liberty on Fifth avenue, when the Montenegrin flag was un furled and when he was driven In state up Montenegro Lifts Her Voice for Our Help the magnificently decorated avenue to a luncheon given In honor of Montenegro, he felt that relief was at hand and that he would soon be able to cable funds to his starving country people. At tho luncheon an amusing Incident oc curred. The toastmaater had proposed a health to King Nicholas, which was received with enthusiasm. He then proposed a health to the Royal Minister, and when Gen. Gvosdenovltch rose to reply he was so overcome with emotion that at the end of his eloquent little speech of apprecia tiondelivered, by the way, In excellent English he concluded his remarks by sud denly leaning over and kissing the toast master upon the cheek. There followed a moment of hilarious laughter and applause and the toastmaster, In some confusion, rose to reply. In his previous remarks ho had made Nome poet ical quotation about Something or other be ing "chaste but burning," and he said, amid his blushes: "Gentlemen, this salute of our guest of honor was 'chaste but burning,' but It tickled." A few days after this Gen. Gvosdenovltch left for his post at Washington, feeling sure that tho extraordinary generosity of the American people would yield him funds for his country, but for some reason or other not one of our associations for foreign re lief yielded one cent for the relief of Monte negro. None of our financiers found it possible to start a fund, and ip January, 1919, Gen. Gvosdenovltch, crestfallen nnd terribly disappointed, sailed for Europe without being able to procure any aid what ever for his King or his country. About that time an American Red Cross expedition arrived in Montenegro And un der the efficient administration of Major Edward Dexter, who spent some three months th, a grer.t dejtt ,i: th actual suffering among the starving people was relieved. Major Dexter recently told 'me that he had a great admiration for this heroic peo ple and the greatest sympathy for their destitute condition. He was honored' with several Interviews with tho King in Paris, of whom he formed a very high opinion. Laboring Under Much Hardship MONTENEGRO, the land of the Black Mountain, can't very well be hid den, as it Is a sort of eagle's r.est, "a country that is set pn a hill." The princi pality bears this name not only In Its native Idiom.- when It assumes the form of Tserna gora, but also In the French, Italian, Turk ish and Arabic languages, and In modern Greek and Albanian. All tho adjectives that describe high mountains, deep gorges, pre cipitous falls, beetling cliffs, have been ex hausted by tho Infrequent travellers who have made the Journey over the "Road of a Thousand Thrills" or climbed tho "Jacob's Ladder" In order to get Into the Interior of the country. Everything Modern Lacking. Everything modern Is excluded from the country on account of this difficulty of transportation; mails are Infrequent because the motor service by which they arc carried Is held up continually nt frequent Intervals by lack of petrol. All food products are con veyed to the market town of Podgoritza from Cattaro, the coast town, by horse or ox teams. The towns are only fifty miles apart, but the road between them Is alternately ft climb or a fan. and It leads over two moun tain divides. This brings the cost of flour and other staples to a degree that was almost prohibitive before tho great war, and Is so absolutely now, since the Montenegrins lost almost everything In that war. To Ryeka the Montenegrin farmers from near the upper end of Lake Scutari row boatloads of their produce, and having ex changed them for articles most needed wait at the rugged shores until the cool nightfall before poling their boats back. There is THE SUN AND NEW YORK HERALD, SUNDAY, MARCH -A . 1 fKTHI M Will J 1111 III II II II II III III III II ! 1 III Iff HBBBBBBBBBBBK' ' JW .'(, BVWlHtnHllBBBnBP Vr'IAim III scarcely any money to be seen In the markat towns and business la done under the primi tive method of barter. The American Red Cross has a relief sta tion at Rycku. Until the armistice, that Is through tho period of enemy occupation, It had been Impossible to got relief to the un fortunate country. Tho reports of the agent of the Red Cross show that many of the in habitants are starving and general condi tions aro pitiable. With tho occupation 'of Montenegro by the Serbians since tho war conditions have not improved and the statement has been made in a note to the Powers asking that money and food supplies should be dis tributed direct to the people by American agents. In consequence of a failure In tho promise of reasonable support the Monte negrin Minister to the United States has been obliged to shut down headquarters at Albany Burgesses Corps Fighting the Sheriff TURN back a page In history to the quarter century preceding tho civil war and read who was who in the social nnd military life of this State. There you will find In largo letters the name of tho'Burgesses Corps of Albany; the same corps whose fight to keep tho Sheriff away from the door has attracted attention re cently. Its prestige dimmed. Its member ship dwindled to a mere handful, and r.a special privileges taken away by the Legis lature, tho crack corps of another age has fallen un evil days. The gorgeous bearskin shako of the early '30s has given way before tho efficient khaki. Yet the corps still stands as an institution of remarkable traditions which are vivid in the minds of men and women who recall the life of the ante-bellum days. This same Burgesses Corps Is the only remaining or ganization of Its kind left in this country whose llfo spans a great part of the history of the nation. It Is the last of hundreds of its kind. Starting back In that epoch when young America was just beginning to forge ahead as a world Power, It Is fighting Its battle for continued existence In tho days when the who'.o world looks to this nation as the greatest of all Powers. Tha corps was organized In October, 1833. Under the military law In force all citizens between 18 and 45 were compelled to have military training. Tho universal military training over which the nation has been torn for hcveral years was accepted as neces Fary then. The law was that when eighty or more citizens of a community capable of bearing arms were able to maintain them selves by their own resources as a military organization the Adjutant-General of the State was authorized to grant a uniform company license. As a Light Artillery Corps. Tho leading citizens of Albany formed a '"company, easily proved their financial re sponsibility and obtained a charter as a light artillery corps. Tho Adjutant-General Issued guns and equipment and In 1834 the Legislature passed a special act con ferring on the Burgesses or citizens spe cial privileges and rights as a uniform com pany. For tho next half century the corps was one of the leading military organizations In the United States. Its picturesque uni form was patterned after the Coldstream Guards of England, and consisted of blue trousers, red swallowtail coats and the enor mous bearskin hats. Tho uniforms were . resplendent with gold laco. ' Leading citizens not only of tha capital district but of the entire Stato were mem bers. In that period of American Hfo fol lowing tho Revolutionary' days and down almost to the civil war clubs and social In stitutions had not developed as we know them in this tranaraUoa. The Ore company GEN . A. 1-vCT-lCKJ(VlTfM . XXX Tf TFT vy and1 MINISTER PLENIPOTENTIARY from (viur ' iiw -ihe UNITED STATES. Washington and all the subordinate diplo mats have. It is said, left the country. What his country asks Is, nccordlng to the Minister, to be restored as she was before the war so that she may determine her own fate. She is willing, always ac cording to the Minister, who now has left this country, to form one of a Slavonic con federation, but insisting on autonomy. Tho fate of exiled King Nicholas, who Is now at Cap Martin without funds or resources, would then bo determined by Montenegro herf-elf. Historic Organization, Dating Back Almost a Century, Declines in Popularity Despite Priceless Traditions and the mllitnry corps were the Institu tions through wnlch men expressed their social activities and obligations. Tho Burgesses Corps was the exclusive organization of the day. Only men of wealth could afford to belong, to have a member ship in tho corps was the badge of social excluslveness and distinction. The namo of the corps was synonymous with hospital ity. Any event of tho day which was worthy of special distinction called for the presence of the Burgesses Corps. Tho .Inau guration of a Governor or a President, the Old Scotch Kissing Custom r I HE Islanders of Lewis, the Island In 1 the Wstern Hebrides, off the coast of Scotland, which Is coming so much Into prominence since Its recent purchase by the soap king, Lord Leverhulme, have many quaint customs, one of which was strikingly revealed In an action for divorce tried in court at Edinburgh. The story Is well told In the Judgment pronounced by Lord Sands. Tho action was at the Instance of Alex ander Matheson, fisherman, of Portnaguran, Stornaway, against Mrs. Isabella Mclean or Matheson, 6, Portnaguran, and against William Campbell, merchant. 9. Portnagu ran, as codefender. His lordship granted a decree of divorce and found tho code fender liable In expenses nnd 40 damages. HU lordship said he thought It was proved that considering their previously distant re lations thero was a remarkable Intimacy vctwoen defender and codefender. The co defender kissed the defender both when they were alone and In her house before her chil dren. This in Itself would have been con clusive had It not been for one circumstance. Tho defender and the codefender were both members of tho United Free Church. There was evidence that could not be disregarded that there was a certain practice of kissing between communicants, though. In deference, probably, to British Ideas, the salutation seemed to pass only between persons of op posite sexes. Tho existence of such a prac tice seemed somewhat startling, but his lord ship thought It was explained by the evi dence taken In relation to what was n matter of public kntwl1i: among tho" conversant with religious conditions In the highlands. It had been the practice for only n mere handful of the adherents of the .church to participate In communion, although the communion season was a far more solemn action In the highlands than in the lowlands. 14, 1920. Montenegro was, before 1912, a country about the size of the British county of York shire, with a population of between 300,000 and 40 00. In their natural stronghold the pci . . for six centuries have waged war with the encroaching Turk and main tained their freedom of their mountain home. Left to their own resources, they have had to depend on themselves for every advance In the arts of war and peace. Tho passage of years, though It has wrought many changes, has not solved for Montenegro the prohlem of her food sup- reception of a distinguished visitor like Prince Edward, was not complete unless ihe corps had its wrt. In its palmiest days Frances Wlllard had not discovered prohibition as a national Issue and ther" were no Andariions fighting booze. The corps members, numbering from about 80 to 120, were noted entertainers and liberal spenders. Their parties back in the '40s and '50s seem almost inconceivable when viewed from this dry time. When the civil war broke out tho corps became part of the Twenty-fifth New York This tradition came down from Roman Catholic times, when It was customary for great crowds to assemble to witness the sacrlflco of tho mass without participation. In Protestant times it had been powerfully reenforced by tho mistranslation, or at all events by the harsh translation, of a passage ot Scripture which seemed to make damna tion tho penalty of unworthy participation. With this fear beforo them It was not re markable that pious and reverent people shrank from participation in communion, and It was only when the lusts of tho flesh had faded and assurance of personal graco had become a settled conviction that a fow elderly people ventured to approach the table. Sloco the split In the Freo Church, how ever. In 1900, tho sections which adhered to the United Free Church had tended to become much more like their brethren In tho soul, and thus it manifests Itself among other ways In mnny younger persons becoming communicants. This caused an awkward complication as regarded the kissing cus tom. It might bo all v vell for elderly saints to greet one another with a chaste Oriental salute, but It was a different matter when It came to young married women be ing promiscuously kissed by casual male acquaintances who happened to be fellow communicants. This extension of the cus tom was therefore disapproved of by many, hut to a certain extent the custom still pre vailed. Sueh being the state of matters, the kissing Indulged In by the parties to this caso had not tho conclusive charactor of unduo familiarity. It was proved that the codefender did more than kiss the defender: ho also put his arms around her, a fact when he admitted. His lordship Xelt that religious custom did not Justify this extension of U ambrac. If Admitted to a Jugo-Slav Con federation She Might Recall King Nicholas ply. Hemmed in by Bosnia, Heregovina, Serbia, Albania, Dalmatla and the Adriatic Sea, but without a serviceable seaport, Montenegro has never been able to produce cn her rocky hillsides and in her few val leys a sufficiency of food to feed her peo ple. This did not prevent them In the old days (before the war) from bejng cheerful, nnd they were notable for their easy and charming manners. The men used to make a great display of their resplendent weap onsswords with hilts incrusted with gold and Jewels, long rifles with stocks of mothei-of-pearl nnd flecked with gold. Their weap ons and clothes often represented their en tire fortune. Tho costume of the Montenegrin consists of knee breeches, which are so baggy as to lesemble short skirts; a double breasted waistcoat, thickly embroidered; a long tunic descending to the knees, cut well open In front, and girt round the waist by a gor geous and voluminous silken cummerbund, a belt concealed by tho cummerbund held pistol and knife or a dagger. In 1905 a constitution was granted to the country by Its ruler, Prince Nicholas, who was 19 when he succeeded his Uncle Danilo. In 1910, In accordance with a petition from the Montenegrin Parliament (Skupshtlna), the principality was erected into a kingdom. Nicholas had then occupied the throne for half a century. He Is the seventh sovereign belonging to the dynasty of Petrovltch Nie gosh, which has ruled over the country since the seventeenth century. State Militia and enlisted to a man in 1861. From Its ranks more than 100 commissioned officers were recruited. The company was actively engaged In tho defence of Wash ington. Few of the military organizations of this character In the nation survived the war. Many, like the Light Guard of old New York, merged with other companies after the war, but others gave up their charters, as was the case of the Light Guard, that with Its contemporary organizations became the Old Guard of Nov York, whii-h still survives. But with the ending of the war the great ness of the orps had pas.'cd. With pne tlcally all others expiring, it was regarded as a marvel that tho Burgesses were strong enough to hold together. But they were, and for another twenty or thirty years maintained their standing and social promi nence as the distinguished dispenser of hos pitallty for the capital district. Many Notable Namei. Tho sense of military things changed, however, with the ending of tho war. State militia companies and naval reserves were organized. Then came tho National Guard and tho armories. Development of the na tion brought its more complex life with so cial clubs and new amusements. The flra company ceased to be the centre of social llfo. Young men turned from tho corps to tho moro modern Institutions; membership fell off as tho old men passed away and tho cost of upkeep became a burden. Tho life membership roll of the Burgess's Is a collection of tho names of men who have been distinguished in this State atmn't for a century. Not only all Governors, United States Senators, leaders of political parties, bankers, railroad presidents, but kings and the princes of other nations who visited these shores were members ' The beginning of the end camo about four years ngo, when tho Legislature passed a bill cutting off tho corps from its special privileges such as exemption from Jury duty, exemption from drills and other special duties. That was supposed to have been done as a result of a political quarrel in which a prominent memlxr became involved with Tammany Hall. With those privl'egM gone thero was nothing left to attract youn men. It Is now little more than a paper orcin izatlon. Major James Otis Woodward of New York Is head of the corps. Judgment was obtained recently for rent due for 'a-.' and tho few interested members hav wen trying hard to meet the hill and stP auction sale of tho corps' possessions. But whether or not the sale Is stopp' ! ' 's' now it is clear to even those who h traditions most that the corps belon 10 another, not to this ago; that further glo to keep it alive Is futile. Yet s there can say which were the gr which the happier, those votings 1 n which tho corps was splendid or the nr ' rn days In which It has failed to compete''