It appears that much discontent exists with respect to the enormous demands that are made upon the parties who sent articles, for exhibition to the World's Fair in London from this country in 1851 for the expenses incurred in forwarding them, &c. A meeting ot those interested in the subject was held on the 11th instant, in this city to express their sentiments respecting the conduct of Mr. Riddle the U. S. Commissioner on that occasion. Mr. Bell, of West Farms, said that he was an exhibitor, and instead of sending by the national vessel, sent by a private .vessel. He paid all the expenses himself, and saw his goods placed in the Exhibition. He received a medal for agricultural products, which was refused to be delivered by Mr. Dodge, till 2 2s. were paid. Mr. William Wisdom, ot tHe firm of Wisdom, Russell & Co., of Cleveland, stated that he sent a case to his private agents, and had paid all duties, bills, &c. Alter the Exhibition he was told by Mr. Dodge that there was a charge for custom in and out, &c, and he experienced great difficulty in getting back his goods. Mr. M. M. Lawrence had paid $40 before he could obtain his goods. A. B. Allen & Co. had paid $400 on $1000 worth of goods. Messrs. Roy & Co., of West Troy, stated that they had sent four plaid long shawls worth in London five guineas each. They thought that they had paid all expenses, but after the exhibition Mr. Riddle advised them that he sold two of them to George Peabody for 1 2s. each: one he said, was stolen, and the other to be lieliveredon their order to a lady of their acquaintance, but who wrote that she was refused the shawl on presentation of said order. That a balance of 1 7 shillings was standing to the credit ol the firm subject to their order. Messrs. Mawson & Brothers had lost a fur victorine, boa, and gauntlets, &c. It was stated that several gentlemen had to pay ten dollars to get their medals. The Chairman stated that Mr. Riddle was notified of the meeting, and he thought he would be present. The Secretary, Mr. Edward G. Tuckerman, presented a list in the hand writing of Mr. N. L. Dodge, of expenses actually paid on goods in London ; and bills for the same expenses as demanded of the exhibitors here by Mr. Dodge, in each of which cases, over-charges to the amount of one or two dollars, had been made and generally collected (amounting in the aggregate to several thousand dollars). He further said that Mr. Dodge was an appli-cant for an important office where he would meet many Americans, and he pitied them if Mr. D. treated them as he did the 700 American Exhibitors in the Industrial Exhibition. All the satisfaction, said he, that American Exhibitors could get, was that there was so much charged against their goods, and that they could pay it or let it alone. The following preamble and resolution was offered and passed unanimously: Whereas, There is reason to believe that wrong has been committed in the management of the affairs of the American Exhibitors at the Industrial Exhibition in London. Resolved, That a committee be appointed to examine all vouchers tor money demanded by Mr. Riddle, or Mr. N. S. Dodge, his Secretary, and paid to them, and the justness of such charge, with instructions to report the same to the exhibitors. In accordance with the above resolution, Messrs. Tuckerman, Thomas Bell, and M. M. Lawrence, were appointed said committee. The following resolution was passed unanimously : " Resolved, That the Secretary of this meeting be authorized to address a letter to the President of the United States, in relation to the supposed application of Nathaniel E. Dodge, of Massachusetts, for a foreign appointment. The American Exhibitors to the World's Industrial Exhibition have represented, believing that necessary proof will be furnished, that said Dodge, whilst Secretary and acting commissioner of the American Department, unworthily transacted the business for his countrymen, so far as the financial affairs were entrusted to him." After other remarks by the gentlemen present, the meeting adjourned, subject to the call ot the committee.
This article was originally published with the title "The London Exhibition" in Scientific American 8, 32, 254 (April 1853)