George Washington Papers

From George Washington to William Carmichael, 10 June 1785

To William Carmichael

Mt Vernon 10th June 1785.


It is with grateful pleasure I sit down to acknowledge the receipt of your favour of the 25th of March covering a triplicate of your letter of the 3d of December (which is the first that has been received), & a copy of the Count of Florida Blanca’s note to you.1

I feel myself under singular obligation to you sir, as the mean of procuring two Jacks of the first race, to be sent me; but my gratitude for so condescending a mark of esteem from one of the first crowned heads in Europe, calls for a better expression than I have, to make suitable acknowledgements to His Catholic Majesty; especially too as his Majesty’s very valuable present was accompanied by a sentiment of approbation which cannot fail of making a lasting impression on my mind, & of becoming very dear to my remembrance.

It is to you Sir, I must stand further indebted for the manner of making known in terms most acceptable, the high sense I entertain of the Kings goodness. The Jacks are not yet arrived, but I hope they soon will, & the accot which you mean to transmit, of the mode of treating them for the propagation of mules, will be equally necessary & acceptable, for my management of them.2

Mr Gardoqui is safely arrived at Philada—I have not had the honor of paying my compliments to him; but, as well for the respect I owe his sovereign, & his own great merit, as on acct of your recommendation of him, I shall be happy in every opportunity which shall offer of shewing him all the attention in my power.

Great Britain, viewing with eyes of chagrin & jealousy the situation of this Country, will not, for some time yet if ever, pursue a liberal policy towards it; but unfortunately for her the conduct of her ministers defeat their own ends: their restriction of our trade with them, will facilitate the enlargement of Congressional powers in commercial matters, more than half a century wou’d otherwise have effected. The mercantile interests of this Country are uniting as one man, to vest the fœderal Government with ample powers to regulate trade & to counteract the selfish views of other nations: this may be considered as another proof that this Country will ever unite in opposition to unjust or ungenerous measures, whensoever or from whomsoever they are offered. I have the honor to be &c.

G: Washington


1GW received only the third copy of Carmichael’s letter of 3 Dec. 1784, which Carmichael included with his letter of 25 Mar. 1785. Floridablanca’s letter to Carmichael is dated 24 Nov. 1784 and is included as an enclosure in Carmichael’s letter to GW of 3 Dec. 1784.

2For the jacks presented to GW by the king of Spain, see Carmichael to GW, 3 Dec. 1784, n.1.

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