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ALS : Archives du Ministère des affaires étrangères We beg Leave to acquaint your Excellency, that we are appointed and fully impowered by the Congress of the United States of America, to propose and negotiate a Treaty of Amity and Commerce between France and the said States. The just and generous Treatment their Trading Ships have received, by a free Admission into the Ports of this Kingdom,...
ALS : Archives du Ministère des affaires étrangères; copy: Harvard University Library. On Sunday, January 5, the commissioners went to Versailles. That evening they sent a brief note to Vergennes asking for an audience on Monday morning. Such an interview in the spotlight of the court would have been quite different from the previous clandestine meeting in Paris, but the idea never seems to...
AL : Archives du Ministère des affaires étrangères Dr. Franklin, Mr. Dean, and Mr. Lee, present their most respectful Complimts. to the Count de Vergennes; and request an audience of his Excellency, to-morrow morning, at such hour as he shall be pleas’d to appoint. Notation: 1777. Janvier 5. In BF ’s hand according to Stevens ( Facsimiles , VI , no. 613), but actually in Arthur Lee’s. We have...
D : Archives du Ministère des affaires étrangères The situation of the United-states, require an immediate supply of Stores of various sorts, of which a proportion of Military for the opening and supporting the coming Campaign. Vessels or Ships belonging to the United-States cannot be procured, and if they could, the Danger and Risque would be very great. Diffuculties have arose at the...
ADS : Archives du Ministère des affaires étrangères; copy: Harvard University Library This memorandum, most of it in Franklin’s hand, marks a distinct departure from the position that he generally maintained. He “was from the first averse to warm and urgent solicitations with the Court of France,” Silas Deane remarked years later. “His age and experience, as well as his philosophical temper,...
D : Archives du Ministère des affaires étrangères We have ordered no Prizes into the Ports of France, nor do we know of any that have entered, for any other purpose than to provide themselves with necessaries untill they could sail for America, or some Port in Europe, for a Market. We were informed this was not inconsistent with the Treaty between France and Great Brittain, and that it would...
AD : Archives du Ministère des affaires étrangères In the several Memoires which Mr: Deane had the honor of presenting previous to the arrival of his Colleagues, the history of the dispute between the United States of America and Great Brittain was brought down to the Time of presenting the Memoires, the situation and resources of the United States justly stated; and Conjectures as to the...
AD : Archives du Ministère des affaires étrangères While Great Brittain engross’d the Commerce of the United States, merchandize imported from thence into France was considered as British, and Consequently subject to the same duties, Customs &c, as if imported direct from the Islands of Great Brittain or Ireland. Since the separation of those States from Brittain it is presumed their...
ALS : Archives du Ministère des affaires étrangères; copy: Archivo Historico Nacional On March 14 the commissioners received their first dispatches from America. Among them was the letter above of December 30 from the committee of secret correspondence, enclosing the Congressional authorization to offer Versailles territorial inducements to enter the war. Deane promptly informed Vergennes that...
AD : Archives du Ministère des affaires étrangères; copy: Harvard University Library On the 19th of November, the Congress resolved, That 100 brass Cannon 3 pounders 50 6 pounders 50 12 pounders 13 18 pounders 13 24 pounders
LS : Archives du Ministère des affaires étrangères; AL (draft) and copy: Harvard University Library The Commissioners from the United States of America desire to represent to his Excellency the Count de Vergennes, that they have received Intelligence of a Vessel belonging to the States having been taken by the Culloden, an English Ship of War, close on the Coast of France; and that the same...
ALS : Archives du Ministère des affaires étrangères To his Excellency the Count de Vergennes, Minister for Foreign Affairs We the underwritten, Commissioners from the Congress of the United States of N. America, beg leave to represent to your Excellency, that Captain Burnel, Commander of an armed Vessel commissioned by the said States, did lately take Refuge in the Port of Cherburgh with his...
ALS : Archives du Ministère des affaires étrangères; copies with variations: Harvard University Library, National Archives (two) We are very sensible of the Protection afforded to us and to our Commerce since our Residence in this Kingdom, agreeable to the Goodness of the King’s gracious Intentions, and to the Law of Nations; and it gives us real and great Concern, when any Vessels of War,...
ALS : Archives du Ministère des affaires étrangères Capt. Wicks when he left France on his last Cruise was ordered not to return if he could possibly avoid it, but to intercept some of the Irish Linnen Ships, and proceed with them for America where the Article was much wanted. Unfortunately he miss’d those Shipps, and having giv’n The Alarm, he had no way to avoid being taken but by sheltering...
LS : Archives du Ministère des affaires étrangères; copy: Harvard University Library After Wickes’s squadron was sequestered on July 15 and Conyngham sailed from Dunkirk two days later, the commissioners’ relations with Versailles might have been expected to improve. Instead they grew worse, largely because Conyngham disobeyed his orders and took prizes. When one was recaptured, and most of...
ALS : Archives du Ministère des affaires étrangères; LS : Archivo Historico National This memorandum, under its calm surface, conveys a sense of depression; and the commissioners had reason to be depressed. They seem to have become suddenly aware that they were in deep financial trouble, because they had made commitments that they did not have the money to honor and that Congress could not....
ALS : Archives du Ministère des affaires étrangères We have the Honour to acquaint your Excellency that we have just receiv’d an Express from Boston, in 30 Days, with Advice of the total Reduction of the Force under General Burgoyne, himself and his whole Army having surrendered themselves Prisoners. General Gates was about to send Reinforcements to Gen. Washington, who was near Philadelphia...
LS : Archives du Ministère des affaires étrangères; two copies: Archivo Historico Nacional The Commissioners from the Congress of the United States of America, beg leave to represent to your Excellency, that it is near a year since they had the Honour of putting into your Hands the Propositions of the Congress for a Treaty of Amity and Commerce with this Kingdom, to which, with sundry other...
LS : Archives du Ministère des affaires étrangères We beg your Excellency’s Permission to make an appeal from the Judgment of the Admiralty at Nantes which ordains a confiscation of two Prizes (British Westindia Ships) taken legally on the high seas by two American Privateers, and that Your Excellency will be pleased to request his Majesty to suspend the Departure of those Prizes, and their...
ALS : Archives du Ministère des affaires étrangères; copy: National Archives We have just receivd information that Mr. Thomas Morris, at Nantes, one of the commercial Agents of Congress, is at the point of death; and that his Papers, on that event, will be taken possession of by the Officers of the Crown. As some of these Papers may very materially concern the public business, we beg an Order...
ALS : Archives du Ministère des affaires étrangères <Passy, April 10, 1778: Mr. Adams, appointed by Congress to replace Mr. Deane, has arrived and will wait on you as soon as he recovers from his voyage. He came on a continental frigate, which took a prize with a cargo valued at £70,000. Congress is detaining Gen. Burgoyne and his army for a breach of the convention, and has more than 10,000...
LS : Archives du Ministère des affaires étrangères <Passy, April 19, 1778: We hear from Bordeaux and Nantes that high insurance rates and British captures create almost an embargo on shipping to America, which defeats the aim of the treaty. We earnestly request you to provide convoys.> Published in Taylor, Adams Papers , VI , 42. In WTF ’s hand.
AL (draft): American Philosophical Society Messieurs Franklin, Lee and Adams present their respectful Compliments to his Excellency le Comte de Vergennes, are extreamly sensible of his good Offices in obtaining the King’s Orders relating to the Presentation of Mr. Adams to his Majesty on Friday next, and will do themselves the Honour of waiting on his Excellency on that Day agreable to his...
LS : Archives du Ministère des affaires étrangères; AL (draft): Massachusetts Historical Society; two copies: National Archives <Passy, May 16, 1778: We received this morning your letter of the 13th about the Boston , and assure you that she is an American warship maintained at the expense of Congress. The King’s reply to the farmers general will, we assume, accord with international usage.>...
LS : Archives du Ministère des affaires étrangères; AL (draft): Massachusetts Historical Society; three copies and transcript: National Archives <Passy, May 19, 1778: We have received your letter of May 15 with its enclosure, and have forwarded copies of both to Congress. Justice, we have no doubt, will be promptly done.> Published in Butterfield, John Adams Diary , IV , 103 and discussed...
ALS : Archives du Ministère des affaires étrangères; AL (draft): Massachusetts Historical Society; copy: National Archives <Passy, June 4, 1778: We enclose the copy of a letter from Capt. Whipple, which contains all the intelligence he brought.> Published in Butterfield, John Adams Diary , IV , 127. In Arthur Lee’s hand, signed by him and Adams. To BF above, May 31.
LS : Archives du Ministère des affaires étrangères; copy: National Archives <Passy, July 17, 1778: We enclose a resolution of Congress about the treaties, and request that it be laid before the King. It will show him how he has won the hearts of that body and of the American people by a beneficence that time will never efface.> Published in Taylor, Adams Papers , VI , 298. See also the...
LS : Archives du Ministère des affaires étrangères; AL (draft): Massachusetts Historical Society; two copies: National Archives <Passy, August 28, 1778: We have several subjects that we must lay before you. One, unfortunately, is money. The nature of the war has necessitated far more emissions of paper currency than would ordinarily have been wise; to limit them Congress has borrowed...
ALS : Archives du Ministère des affaires étrangères; AL (draft): Massachusetts Historical Society; two copies: National Archives <Passy, September 10, 1778: On April 13 Congress resolved that the commissioners should settle with Roderigue Hortalez & Cie. on a compensation for the supplies they provided. The commerce committee sent us the contract made with Beaumarchais’ agent Théveneau de...
Copy: National Archives We have the honor of enclosing to your Excellency a Letter to us from the Honble. Ralph Izard Esqr. Commissioner of Congress to the Grand Duke. We beg the favor of yr. Excellency to give directions for the delivery of the Packages mentiond therein to Monsieur Etienne Cathalan Mercht. at Marseilles, subject to the disposal of Mr. Izard. We have the honor of being with...
ALS : Archives du Ministère des affaires étrangères; AL (draft): Massachusetts Historical Society; two copies: National Archives <Passy, September 26, 1778: Last evening we received your letter of the 24th and shall observe the rules prescribed by M. Necker. We also received your letter of the 25th; article 16 of the treaty of commerce applies to Mr. Izard’s goods as they were shipped before...
ALS : Archives du Ministère des affaires étrangères; AL (draft): Massachusetts Historical Society; three copies and transcript: National Archives <Passy, October 1, 1778: We have received your letter of September 27 and its enclosure. Our instructions from Congress do not empower us to conclude treaties with the Barbary states but we request your help in obtaining passes from them for American...
LS : Archives du Ministère des affaires étrangères; AL (draft): Massachusetts Historical Society; two copies: National Archives <Passy, October 29, 1778: We are ready to execute and exchange the declarations concerning the omission of the 11th and 12th articles of the treaty of commerce, and ask you to appoint a day for us to wait on you.> Published in Taylor, Adams Papers , VII . In the hand...
AL (draft): Massachusetts Historical Society; two copies: National Archives We communicated to Dr Smith, the Letter which your Excellency did Us the Honour to write to Us concerning his Goods. Since which he has inclosed to Us, the Certificate, of Mr Anthy Paine, which We have the Honour to inclose to your Excellency.— If there are two offices, one in which are deposited, Goods Seized, the...
(I) LS and copy : Archives du Ministère des affaires étrangères; AL (draft): Massachusetts Historical Society; two copies: National Archives; (II) LS : Archives du Ministère des affaires étrangères We have the Honour to inclose to your Excellency a Memorial of very great Importance to the United States, to which We beg your Excellency’s Attention and a favourable Answer. We have the Honour to...
LS : Archives du Ministère des affaires étrangères; AL (draft): Massachusetts Historical Society; two copies: National Archives We have been favoured with a Letter signed by many Gentlemen of Nantes and dated the fifteenth of this Month, informing us that most of their Vessels were ready to sail to America, and that others were expected to be ready immediately, so that the Convoy need not wait...
LS : Archives du Ministère des affaires étrangères; AL (drafts): Harvard University Library, Massachusetts Historical Society (two); two copies and two transcripts: National Archives The commissioners, particularly Lee and Adams, devoted substantial effort to the drafting of this memorandum asking that a powerful French fleet be sent to American waters. Their efforts were doomed to failure, at...
LS : Archives du Ministère des affaires étrangères; AL (draft): Massachusetts Historical Society; copies: National Archives (two), Library of Congress We have the Honour of your Excellency’s Letter of the 9th of this Month, requesting to be informed of the Port where those Vessels are which have occasion for a Convoy to America. These Vessels are at Nantes where they wait for the Convoy, which...
LS : Archives du Ministère des affaires étrangères; copies: Library of Congress, National Archives <Passy, January 24, 1779: We received your letter of the 20th enclosing M. de Sartine’s answer relative to the convoy we requested. We do not understand his reference to the four vessels supposedly mentioned by us and fear he has been misinformed. On December 29 we asked for a convoy. You asked...
Copy: American Philosophical Society We think it necessary to inform your Excellency that there is announced in the Courier de l’Europe a Translation of a Letter signed Silas Deane, & to appear in the next number. This Letter is printed in the English Papers from the New York Gazette, and whether it is genuine or false, it is not in our Power to determine: But as it contains a discovery of the...
LS : Archives du Ministère des affaires étrangères; AL (draft): Massachusetts Historical Society; copies: Library of Congress, National Archives (two); translation: American Philosophical Society <Paris, February 9, 1779: For nearly six months Captain Mc-Neill of the privateer General Mifflin has been embarrassed with a lawsuit concerning a French ship he recaptured from the British after it...
We have the honour to enclose an extract of a letter from the Commissioners of the United States of America to Your Excellency dated Aug st. 28 th. 1778. Copy of Your Excellency’s ans r dated 27. Sept r. 1778. & Copy of M. de Sartine’s letter to Your Excellency of the 21 st of Sept r. 1778 all relative to a proposed negotiation with the States of Barbary. Not having any particular authority or...
We have the honour to enclose an extract of a letter from the Commissioners of the United States of America to your Excellency dated Augst. 28. 1778, Copy of Your Excellency’s answer dated 27 Septr. 1778. and copy of M. de Sartine’s letter to your Excellency of the 21st. of Sept. 1778 all relative to a proposed negotiation with the States of Barbary. Not having any particular authority or...
The friendly dispositions which his Majesty has been pleased to shew to the United States of America on every occasion, as well as the assurances given them in the 8th. Article of the treaty of Amity and Commerce that he would employ his good offices and interposition with the powers on the coast of Barbary to provide for the safety of the Citizens of the United States, their vessels and...