Thomas Jefferson Papers

To Thomas Jefferson from C. W. F. Dumas, 28 August 1788

From C. W. F. Dumas

Lahaie 28e. Août 1788


J’ai appris avec grand plaisir, que la Gazette de Leide a été rétablie en France. Ayez la bonté, Monsieur, de m’apprendre, si Votre Excellence et Mr. Diodati avez recommencé à recevoir vos Exemplaires du Bureau et de la maniere ordinaire, afin que je puisse mander à Mr. Luzac de discontinuer l’expédition qu’il vous en fait par la poste, et lui offrir en même temps le paiement de ce qu’il en a expédié depuis la suspension, selon ma commission, en conséquence des ordres de Votre Excellence. Je doute qu’il veuille rien accepter, mais l’honnêteté exige que je le lui offre. J’espere que l’abolition des Paquebots reguliers du Havre n’empechera pas Votre Excellence d’avoir des occasion fréquentes pour l’expédition de ses Dépeches pour le Congrès. Je continuerai donc d’adresser les miennes à Votre Excellence, comme je fais par l’incluse; étant bien aise d’ailleurs que tout ce qui se fait ici, passe aussi sous les yeux de Votre Excellence et la tienne au Courant. Je suis avec grand respect, de Votre Excellence Le très-humble & très-obéissant serviteur

C W F Dumas

RC (DLC); endorsed. FC (Dumas Letter Book, Rijksarchief, The Hague; photostats in DLC). Enclosure (same): Dumas to Jay, 27 Aug. 1788, stating that, since his last of the 8th, the Compagnie des Indes, needing 15,000,000 florins to forestall its total ruin, and the province having unsuccessfully attempted a loan at 2½% had issued 5,000 bills of exchange of 2,000 florins each, which were accepted by the province, payable in five years at 4%, free of all taxes and charges of any sort; that these bills, bearing such favorable interest and conditions, had been promptly cornered, but the engrossers could only block up one-third of the outlet; that, in order to complete the amount needed, another issue was contemplated, but that, since the first had caused the national 2½% obligations to fall from 85 to 80 and another would depress them at least 10% more, they dared not; that, instead, there would be a forced loan levied on the real and personal property of everyone; that this, together with the conflicting commitments known to all, would enable Jay to judge the state of the country better than any reasons Dumas could advance; that he is enclosing a memorial of F. van Willigen, Bavarian chargé d’affaires at The Hague, asking that this and the contract to which it pertains be transmitted to Congress in order that justice be done to a Palatine subject “par une personne établie à Philadelphie.” A note appended to FC in the Dumas Letter Book shows that the Van Willigen enclosure, together with the gazettes, went with the Jay letter by way of Amsterdam, and that the duplicate enclosed to TJ also included a résumé of Dumas’ dispatches of 24 July, 1 Aug., and 14 Aug. 1788. The RC of Dumas’ dispatch to Jay of 27 Aug. 1788, together with others between 1 Aug. 1788 and 20 Jan. 1789, is described in Dipl. Corr., 1783–89, description begins The Diplomatic Correspondence of the United States of America, from the Signing of the Definitive Treaty of Peace … to the Adoption of the Constitution, Washington, Blair & Rives, 1837, 3 vols. description ends iii, 628–9, as missing, but this description also includes (together with an inaccurate account of the funding operations of the Compagnie des Indes) the statement that the Van Willigen memorial involved a “contract between Louis Conrad Kuhn, of Manheim, and the widow Anne Marie Zeller, residing in Philadelphia.”

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