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We have now the Honor to submit to the Consideration of the United States in Congress assembled that Constitution which has appeared to us the most advisable. The Friends of our Country have long seen and desired that the Power of making War Peace and Treaties, that of levying Money & regulating Commerce and the correspondent executive and judicial Authorities should be fully and effectually...
In our last of Dec r. 15 we had the honour of communicating to Congress our letter to the Ambassador of Portugal which accompanied the draught of the treaty of Amity & Commerce proposed on our part. Since that date he addressed to us the letter N o. 1. acknowledging the receipt of ours & informing us that he had forwarded it to his court. The Baron de Thulemeier also, the Prussian Minister at...
I have the Satisfaction, to inform Congress that by Letters from our Bankers, in Amsterdam, I am informed, they have in Hand, near a Million of Gilders, and consequently, that the two Loans I have opened, amounting in the whole to Seven Millions of Guilders are almost full. This is full proof of the amelioration of our Credit, since January 1784, when I was obliged in a very tender State of...
[ New York, 1784 ]. In a letter beginning “Nothing could justify my repeated applications to Your Honorable body, but that rigorous lot by which I feel myself oppressed,” Hamilton set forth von Steuben’s claims to compensation by the Continental Congress. Df , in writing of H, Mr. Herbert R. Strauss, Chicago. Because von Steuben sent so many memorials to Congress, any one of which may have...
In our letter of Nov r 11 th. we had the honour of laying before Congress a state of our proceedings till that date. As from that it would appear that the last communications had in every instance passed from us to the other parties we can now only add the answers of such of them as have yet answered, & our replies; these are the courts of Portugal, Tuscany & Great Britain. N o. 1. is a copy...
Having assembled together at this place about the latter end of August we proceeded in obedience to the commands of Congress to notify our appointment and its objects to such Powers as we thought it adviseable at that time to address. We wrote a circular letter in the form N o. 1. to the Ambassadors or other Ministers residing here from the courts of Saxony; the two Sicilies, Sardinia, Venice,...
D r Franklin has lately communicated to M r Jefferson and me a Letter he has received from the Comte de Vergennes and another from M r Grand. The first informs that M r Marbois had informed him, that upon his application to the Superintendant of Finances, he had received an Answer by M r Governieur Morris, that Letters Should be written both to Amsterdam and Paris to provide for the Payment of...
The inclosed Letters from M r Dumas will communicate to Congress, the present State of affairs, between their High Mightinesses and the Government general of the Austrian Low Countries. Those, who have negotiated for the Emperor, appear to have presumed too much upon the Fears and Divisions of the Dutch, and to have compromised too hastely his Authority and Dignity. The Dutch, neither...
Having been obliged to come to Holland, the Beginning of this Year to obtain Money, to prevent M r Morriss Bills from being protested, I have remained here untill this Time, in Expectation of receiving the further Commands of Congress. From the Resolution of the 1. of May 1783 and from many private Letters, I expected that a Commission would have arrived to the late Ministers at the Peace, to...
Soon after the Signature of the Preliminary Articles of Peace, I requested, of Congress, their Permission to return to America. This Request they did not at that time judge proper to grant, me, but on the contrary resolved that a Commission should be sent to me, M r: Franklin & M r: Jay, to make a Treaty of Commerce with Great Britain. But as no such Commission has arrived in Europe, the...
If my Memory does not deceive me, I have heretofore transmitted to Congress, the Advice of some of the foreign Ministers here, that the United States in Congress assembled, Should write a Letter to each of the Sovereigns of Europe, informing them of the compleat Establishment of their Independance. Lately in seperate Conversations, with the Ministers of the two Empires, and the King of...
Some Weeks ago the Baron de Thulemeier called upon me and delivered me the Paper, copy of which is inclosed marked 1. It is a Letter written by the Envoy to the King. Last Evening the Baron called upon me again and delivered me the Answer of the King contained in the Paper Copy of which is inclosed, marked 2 I have heretofore transmitted to Congress, by different opportunities, Copies of the...
As I had the Honour to observe in a former Letter there is a Fermentation in the Courts of the two Empires and those of Bourbon, which appears in Several Particulars which may be explained hereafter. A Question of Etiquette, which amounts to no more, than which of two Persons Shall enter or leave a Room the first may Set all Europe in a Flame. The Prince de Gallitzin, the Russian Ambassador,...
Since my last Arrival in Holland, I have not transmitted to Congress, the Details of the Politicks of this Court and Nation, nor of those neighbouring Courts which are exciting disputes with it. M r Dumas has been in the Habit and Train of that History and I have not thought fit to interrupt him: But if I Should reside here regularly, the whole Business of the Mission will of Course go through...
The Measures taken by the Neighbouring Powers are likely to produce an intimate Friendship and Connection between this Republick and France. England, has mistaken her Policy So much as to delay the Signature of the definitive Treaty, and to keep up a Coldness and Distance, which instead of exciting the Populace, in favour of England as She expected has only accellerated the Union with France,...
I received Sometime Since a Letter from an American Gentleman now in London, a Candidate for Orders, desiring to know, if American Candidates might have Orders from Prostestant Bishops on the Continent, and complaining that he had been refused by the Bishop of London and the Archbishop of Canturbury, unless he would take the Oaths of Allegiance &c. Meeting Soon afterwards, the Danish Minister...
I have the Honour to inclose to Congress a Copy of a Letter from the Baron De Thulemeier, and a Copy of a Project of a Treaty transmitted to me, by the order of the King of Prussia. I Should hope it might be examined in Congress or by a Committee and that Instructions may be sent, concerning any Changes to be made in the Articles, together with a Commission to treat and conclude to Such...
I have the Honour to inclose Copies of three Notes which I have receiv’d from the Prussian Minister, the Baron de Thulemeier, by which Congress will see, that the King has agreed to take our Treaty with Sweeden for a Model, reserving to each Party the right of suggesting such alterations as shall appear to him convenient— My Request to Congress is, that they would be pleased to send...
On the Eighteenth of February the Baron de Thulemeyer, Envoy Extraordinary to their High Mightinesses from the King of Prussia, did me the Honour of a Visit, but as he found I had Company, he soon took his Leave, and as I accompanied him to the Head of the Stairs, he told me, he had Something to propose to me from the King and desired to know, when he might call again. I offered to return his...
I had Scarcely finished my Dispatches, to go by M r Thaxter with the definitive Treaty, when I was taken down with a Fever at Paris, and reduced so low as to be totally unable to attend to any Business for a long time. When I grew so much better, as to be able to ride, I was advised to go to England.— As I had nothing to do at Paris, and an Attempt to reside in Holland, would probably have...
Permit me to congratulate you, on your Election to the Chair, and to wish you and the Members of Congress in general much Satisfaction at Anapolis. on the Fifth of this Month, Cap tn Jones arrived at my Lodgings in Piccadilly, with Dispatches from the late President M r Boudinot.— The Letters addressed to “the Ministers Plenipotentiary of the United States” I opened, And found a Set of...
If any one should ask me what is the System of the present administration? I should answer, “to keep their places”— Every Thing they say or do appears evidently calculated to that End, and no Ideas of public Good no national Object is suffered to interfere with it. In order to drive out Shelburne, they condemned his Peace which all the Whig Part of them, would have been very glad to have made,...
About the fourteenth of September I was seized at Paris with a Fever, which proved to be a dangerous one, and brought me, very low, so that I was unable to attend to any business for some time.— on the twentieth of October, in Pursuance of the Advice of my Friends, I sett out from Auteuil a Village in the Neighbourhood of Passy for London, which City I reach’d by slow Journeys, the twenty...
I beg Leave to introduce to your Civilities M r: Thaxter, who goes home with the definitive Treaty of Peace, and the original Treaty with Holland. M r: Thaxter will present you a Medal, a Present to Congress, from the Province of Friesland, he will also present another to your Excellency of which I beg your acceptance. These were sent as Presents to me and I have no more, otherwise I should...
As I am to remain in Europe for sometime longer, I beg Leave to take a cursory view of what appears necessary or expedient to be further done in Europe, for I conceive it to be not only the Right but the Duty of a foreign Minister to advise his Sovereign according to his Lights and Judgment, although the more [extensive Information], and Superior Wisdom of the Sovereign may frequently [see]...
On the third Instant, Definitive Treaties were concluded, between all the late belligerent Powers, except the Dutch, who the Day before settled and signed Preliminary Articles of Peace with Britain. We most sincerely & cordially congratulate Congress and our Country in general, on this happy Event, and we hope that the same kind Providence which has led us thro’ a vigorous War, to an honorable...
Yesterday morning, M r. Jay informed me, that D r. Franklin had recieved, & soon afterwards the D r. put into my hands the Resolution of Congress of the first of May, ordering Commission and Instructions to be prepared to those Gentlemen and myself, for making a Treaty of Commerce with Great Britain. This Resolution, with your Excellency’s Letter, arrived very seasonably, as M r. Hartley was...
As the Resolution of Congress of the first of May, has determined it to be my Duty to remain in Europe at least another Winter I shall be obliged to say many things to your Excellency by Letter, which I hoped to have had the honour of saying upon the Floor of your house. Some of these Things may be Thought at first of little Consequence; but Time and Inquiry and Consideration will Shew them to...
On Wednesday the third day of this Month, the American Ministers met the British Minister at his Lodgings at the Hôtel de York, and signed, sealed and delivered the Definitive Treaty of Peace between the United States of America and the King of Great Britain. Altho’ it is but a Confirmation or Repetition of the Provisional Articles, I have the honor to congratulate Congress upon it, as it is a...
Wednesday the third of this Month is appointed for the Signature of the Definitive Treaties of Peace. Unable to obtain, any addition or Explanation, We have been obliged to agree to sign the Provisional Articles over again with only a Preamble, making them a Definitive Treaty. No Regulation of Commerce is agreed upon, and indeed we have no Commission or Authority to make any.— We have thus...
RC ( PCC , No. 84, III, f. 462–465). printed : Wharton, ed., Dipl. Corr. Amer. Rev. Francis Wharton, ed., The Revolutionary Diplomatic Correspondence of the United States , Washington, 1889; 6 vols. , 5:114–116. In this letter JA included English translations of two items that appeared in Dutch newspapers, including the Gazette de Leyde of 8 and 11 January. The first was the representation...
Amsterdam, 15 January 1782. RC in John Thaxter’s hand ( PCC , No. 84, III, f. 458–459). printed : Wharton, ed., Dipl. Corr. Amer. Rev. Francis Wharton, ed., The Revolutionary Diplomatic Correspondence of the United States , Washington, 1889; 6 vols. , 5:111. In this letter, JA provided the English text of a note presented by the Russian minister, Prince Gallitzin, to Hendrik Fagel, secretary...
Having recieved the Advice of several Gentlemen, Members of the States, and also the Opinion of the Duke de la Vauguyon and the Comte de Vergennes, I went to the Hague on Tuesday the 8th. day of this Month, and the next Morning at ten waited on the President of their High Mightinesses, Mr. Van den Sandheuvel of Dort, a City of Holland, to whom I made a verbal Requisition in the following...
Amsterdam, 29 December 1781. RC in John Thaxter’s hand ( PCC , No. 84, III, f. 446–450). printed : Wharton, ed., Dipl. Corr. Amer. Rev. Francis Wharton, ed., The Revolutionary Diplomatic Correspondence of the United States , Washington, 1889; 6 vols. , 5:77–79. This letter consists of English translations of a brief note announcing Austria’s accession to the armed neutrality and the formal act...
Amsterdam, 25 December 1781. RC in John Thaxter’s hand ( PCC , No. 84, III, f. 438–441). printed : Wharton, ed., Dipl. Corr. Amer. Rev. Francis Wharton, ed., The Revolutionary Diplomatic Correspondence of the United States , Washington, 1889; 6 vols. , 5:70–71). In this letter, which Congress received on 18 Sept. 1782, JA provided the text of Lord Stormont’s announcement of 8 Sept. to the...
Amsterdam, 25 December 1781. RC in John Thaxter’s hand ( PCC , No. 84, III, f. 442–444). printed : Wharton, ed., Dipl. Corr. Amer. Rev. Francis Wharton, ed., The Revolutionary Diplomatic Correspondence of the United States , Washington, 1889; 6 vols. , 5:71–72. This letter consists of an English translation of Prussia’s declaration of 8 Dec., intended to remove any questions about the identity...
Having recieved an Invitation to the Hague, in order to have some Conversation with some Gentlemen in the Government concerning the further Steps proper for me to take in the present Conjuncture, I had determined to have undertaken the Journey to day: but the Arrival in Town of the Duke de la Vauguyon, determined me to postpone it until tomorrow. At noon to day, his Excellency did me the honor...
The first public Body, which has proposed a Connection with the United States, is the quarter of Oostergo, in the Province of Friesland. The Proposition is in these words: “Every impartial Patriot has a long time percieved, that in the direction of affairs relative to this War with England, there has been manifested an inconcievable Lukewarmness and Sloth: but they discover themselves still...
Amsterdam 13 December 1781. RC in John Thaxter’s hand ( PCC , No. 84, III, f. 426–429). printed : Wharton, ed., Dipl. Corr. Amer. Rev. Francis Wharton, ed., The Revolutionary Diplomatic Correspondence of the United States , Washington, 1889; 6 vols. , 5:43–44. This letter, read in Congress on 15 March 1782 and acted upon on 26 March ( JCC Worthington C. Ford and others, eds., Journals of the...
I have recieved those Instructions, with which I was honoured by Congress on the sixteenth of August, and communicated them forthwith to the French Ambassador to their High Mightinesses, and to the American Ministers at Versailles and Madrid. The Duke de la Vauguyon was of opinion, that they were very well considered, and very well timed, to counteract another Trait of British Policy, in...
It is still as problematical as ever, what is the political System of this Republick, and indeed whether it has any System at all. They talk much and deliberate long, but execute nothing. By the Violence with which they speak and write of each other, a Stranger would think them ripe for a civil War. In the Assembly of the States of Guelderland, held to consider of the Requisition of the King...
I see in the London Courant, which arrived to day, an advertisement of a translation into English of the address to the People of the Netherlands: so that this work is likely to be translated into all Languages and read by all the World, notwithstanding the Placards against it. I have before sent that of Utrecht. That of Holland is as follows: “The States of Holland and of West Friesland, to...
Amsterdam, 18 October 1781. RC in John Thaxter’s hand ( PCC, Misc. Papers , Reel No. 1, f. 427–433). printed : Wharton, ed., Dipl. Corr. Amer. Rev. Francis Wharton, ed., The Revolutionary Diplomatic Correspondence of the United States , Washington, 1889; 6 vols. , 4:787–790. In this letter, a duplicate, JA discussed the war’s effect on Dutch trade. He reported that fishermen from Vlaardingen...
Amsterdam, 17 October 1781. RC in John Thaxter’s hand ( PCC, Misc. Papers , Reel No. 1, f. 423–426). printed : Wharton, ed., Dipl. Corr. Amer. Rev. Francis Wharton, ed., The Revolutionary Diplomatic Correspondence of the United States , Washington, 1889; 6 vols. , 4:782–783. Included in this letter, a duplicate, was an English translation of a placard issued at Utrecht on 3 Oct. against Aan...
I am very sorry to learn that Congress had recieved no Letters from October to June. It is not that I wrote less than usual in that period, but that I was more unfortunate. Two Vessels, which sailed from hence for Boston, each of which had Dispatches from me for Congress, destroyed them, one upon being taken, and the other being chased. But the most of my Dispatches were Lost at St. Eustatia,...
I wish, if it were possible, to communicate to Congress the present State of every Affair, which they have been pleased to confide in any measure to me. I have recieved the new Commission for Peace, and the Revocation of my Commission and Instructions of the 29th of September 1779. To both of these Measures of Congress, as to the Commands of my Sovereign, I shall pay the most exact Attention....
The Constitution of this Country is such, that it is difficult to discover the general Sense. There have been all along Circumstances in which it might be discerned; but these were so feeble, and so susceptible of Contradiction and Disguise, that some extraordinary Exertions were necessary to strike out unquestionable proofs of the Temper and Opinion of the Nation. Last Spring, the Part of...
The late glorious Victory, obtained by Admiral Zoutman over Admiral Parker, is wholly to be ascribed to the Exertions of Amsterdam. Pretences and Excuses would have been devised, for avoiding to send out the Fleet, and indeed for avoiding an Action, when at Sea, if it had not been for the Measures which have been taken to arouse the Attention and animate the Zeal of the Nation. The Officers...
We have recieved at last Parkers Account of the Action with Admiral Zoutman: according to which, the Battle was maintained with a continual fire for three Hours and forty Minutes, when it became impossible to work his Ships. He made an Attempt to recommence the Action, but found it impracticable. The Bienfaisant had lost his Main-Top-Mast, and the Buffalo her Mizzen Yard, and the other Vessels...
Mr. Temple has held offices of such Importance, and a Rank so considerable in America, before the Revolution, that his Return to his native Country at this time, cannot fail to cause much Speculation, and it is to be feared some diversity of sentiments concerning him. As he came from London to Amsterdam and did me the honor of a visit, in which he opened to me his design of returning, and his...