Question 225.— The practice of filing carbon copies of typewritten letters instead of copying them in letter books seems to be growing. 1 would like the opinion of other bankers as to the convenience and safety of the practice. The use of the copy in evidence is a matter to be considered. The letter press copy, owing to the order in which it comes in the letter book, presents in itself evidence of its genuineness, while a carbon copy might easily be fabricated.

Answer.—There are no degrees of secondary evidence— a letter press copy and a carbon copy stand in precisely the same position in regard to admissibility as evidence, and if the loss of the original be proved or its non-production otherwise properly accounted for so as to lay the foundation for the admission of secondary evidence, the question would be simply one of fact, viz.: " is the carbon letter a copy of the original?" The same question would be involved if the letter press copy were offered. If the contest were upon the existence of the original or as to its date or when sent, etc., one can readily see that the letter press copy, appearing in its proper place, would in ordinary circumstances be a stronger piece of evidence than a carbon copy, but if the contest were as to the contents of the original neither the letter press copy nor the carbon copy would prove itself. Evidence would have to be given on this point, and if the contest were keen it might be easier to throw doubts upon the accuracy of the carbon copy than upon that of the other. Still the question would be one of fact and in the majority of cases it would be as easy to prove the one as the other.