Thomas Jefferson Papers

To Thomas Jefferson from Robert Smith, 31 August 1802

From Robert Smith

Navy Dep. Aug: 31. 1802


In addition to the Instructions to Commodore Morris copy of which had been transmitted to you by the last Mail, I have found it necessary to send to him further powers of which the enclosed is a Copy. From the best information I have been able to obtain through various channels these Gun Boats will be indispensibly necessary.

Accept the assurances of my high respect—

Rt Smith

RC (DLC); endorsed by TJ as received from the Navy Department on 2 Sep. and so recorded in SJL with notation “gunboats Marocco”; also endorsed by TJ: “Gunboats.” FC (Lb in DNA: RG 45, LSP). Enclosure: Smith to Commodore Richard V. Morris, 31 Aug. 1802, authorizing Morris to purchase gunboats from Spain or Great Britain if he finds that “the species of warfare” practiced by Morocco would make their acquisition “essentially necessary for the protection of our Merchantmen in the Straits of Gibraltar during calms”; before procuring any gunboats, however, Morris is to consider whether the season is too far advanced; “The Christian powers of Europe do not, I believe, use these Gun boats but in the Summer, and their practice ought to be a guide to us” (Tr in DLC; unsigned, in a clerk’s hand).

BY THE LAST MAIL: Smith to TJ, 27 Aug. 1802 (first letter).

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