Page:Copyright, Its History And Its Law (1912).djvu/389

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INTERNATIONAL IN AMERICA 357

property most insecure. The League also addressed Criticisms a letter to the Secretary of State, urging the comple- ""* changes tion of a treaty with Great Britain, to which F. T. Fre- linghuysen replied, January 25, 1884, that while the negotiation as to the Harper draft had not been inter- rupted, he thought the object might be attained by a simple amendment to our present copyright law, based on reciprocity, after which a simple convention would suffice to put the amendment in force. Mr. Dorsheimer's bill was referred to the House Commit- tee on the Judiciary, and reported favorably, with amendments extending the copyright term to twenty- eight years, without regard to the death of the au- thor, with renewal for fourteen years. The amended bill also provided that such copyright should cease in case reciprocity was withdrawn by the other country; that there should be no copyright in works already published, and that the provisions of the domestic copyright law should, as far as applicable, extend also to foreign copyrights. On the 19th of February Mr. Dorsheimer moved to make his bill the special order for February 27, but his motion failed of the necessary two-thirds vote, 155 voting aye, 98 nay and 55 not voting. There was considerable opposition on the part of those who insisted upon the re-manufacture of foreign books in this country, and Mr. Dorsheimer privately expressed himself as willing to accept, al- though not willing to favor, amendments in that di- rection if they were necessary to insure the passage of the bill.

A circular letter of inquiry sent out by the Pub- American Ushers' Weekly early in 1884, showed a general de- publishers' sire on the part of American publishers in favor of ^^^ ^^ international copyright. The replies were summar- ized in V. 25 from March, 1884. Of fifty-five lead- ing publishers who answered, fifty-two favored and