George Washington Papers

To George Washington from James Simpson, 30 April 1793

From James Simpson

Gibraltar 30th April 1793


I have the honor to inclose a Dispatch received lately from Mr Francis Chiappe for Your Excellency.1 I am with great Respect Sir Your Most Obedient & Most Hume Servant

James Simpson

ALS, DNA: RG 59, Despatches from Consular Officers: Gibraltar.

English merchant James Simpson (d. 1820), who was currently the Russian consul at Gibraltar, was appointed U.S. consul there in 1794. In 1796 he became U.S. consul at Morocco, a post he held until his death.

1The enclosed letter from Francisco Chiappe was written, in Italian, at Rabat, Morocco, on 20 Mar. 1793 (DLC:GW). Tobias Lear’s docket on the receiver’s copy indicates that it was received on 30 June 1793. On 3 July, Lear forwarded it to Thomas Jefferson, who promised to translate it for the president (Memorandum from Jefferson, 11 July; JPP, description begins Dorothy Twohig, ed. The Journal of the Proceedings of the President, 1793–1797. Charlottesville, Va., 1981. description ends 191). In this letter Chiappe acknowledged the receipt of Jefferson’s letter of 13 May 1791 and mentioned his own letter to GW of 8 Nov. 1791 (Jefferson Papers, description begins Julian P. Boyd et al., eds. The Papers of Thomas Jefferson. 40 vols. to date. Princeton, N.J., 1950—. description ends 20:400–401). He wrote that he has continued to forward information about Moroccan affairs through Thomas Barclay, who promised to write the president about Chiappe’s need for an honorarium and the customary title of U.S. agent (Jefferson to GW, 31 Oct. 1792 [second letter], note 1, and David Humphreys to GW, 8 Feb. 1793, and notes). Chiappe also claimed that he and his brothers, Giuseppe and Girolamo, have prevented a war on several occasions. Giuseppe Chiappe made similar complaints in his letter to GW of 20 April (Simpson to GW, 22 May, n.1). For the Chiappe brothers’ role in relations between the United States and Morocco, see Giuseppe Chiappe to GW, 18 July 1789, source note.

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