Thomas Jefferson Papers

To Thomas Jefferson from John Mitchell, 21 May 1803

From John Mitchell

Havre 21 May 1803


I had the honor of addressing You the 9h. instant solisiting to be Confirmed in Appointment of Commercial Agent for this place.—Which I beg leave to repeat.

It affords Me great pleasure that My first official Act should be the sending on Mr. Hughes charged with despatches of such importance to My Country;—and am very happy that Under your Administration so great an Aquisition has been Made to the United States.—and a Treaty concluded that Will afford such universal satisfaction

Most sinceerly do I congratulate You and beg leave to Assure you that I am with Most perfect respect

Sir, Your very Obd Servt.

John Mitchell

RC (DNA: RG 59, LAR); at head of text: “Thomas Jefferson Esqr President of the United States of America”; endorsed by TJ as received 14 July with added notation “to be Consul at Havre” and so recorded in SJL.

despatches of such importance: Monroe and Livingston originally expected J. P. P. Derieux to carry the signed original of the Louisiana treaty and conventions to the United States. Learning that George A. Hughes of Baltimore could depart from Le Havre sooner than Derieux would from Bordeaux, the diplomats gave the papers to Hughes on 13 May and sent word ahead to Mitchell asking him to arrange passage for the courier. Hughes sailed on 23 May and delivered the papers in Washington on 14 July. As a precaution due to the rupture in relations between Britain and France, Livingston and Monroe also dispatched copies to London with Joseph Reed, Jr., asking him to send them on from there. Derieux took a second official set of copies via Bordeaux as first planned (Madison, Papers description begins William T. Hutchinson, Robert A. Rutland, J. C. A. Stagg, and others, eds., The Papers of James Madison, Chicago and Charlottesville, 1962- , 35 vols., Sec. of State Ser., 1986- , 9 vols., Pres. Ser., 1984- , 7 vols., Ret. Ser., 2009- , 2 vols. description ends , Sec. of State Ser., 4:606, 617; 5:5, 12, 23, 28, 47, 66, 98, 238).

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