— By Domani Spero
The following is an extract from the Congressional Serial Set via Google Books. In fiscal year 1929, the US Government paid $4,500 to the spouse of the U.S. Consul in Panama who died while in the Service. This is about $61,000 in 2013. By far, the most expensive allocation was for the transportation and travel expenses of FS members at $80,000. Printing and binding was barely $12,000 but still a lot more than a death gratuity at the time. Indemnity for the death of a Chinese citizen in Peking killed by a car driven by a mission guard was $875.
The total Diplomatic and Consular funds appropriated by Congress in 1929 was $88,375. That’s $1,201,750.12 in today’s money. Not even enough to run the current US Mission in Baghdad for a month.