Benjamin Franklin Papers
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To Benjamin Franklin from John Adams, 2 February 1783

From John Adams9

AL: Library of Congress; copy: Massachusetts Historical Society

Paris 2 Feb. 1783

Mr Adams having Something of Consequence to communicate to the American Ministers Plenipotentiary, for the Peace, requests the Honour of His Excellency Dr Franklin’s Attendance, with the other Ministers, at Mr Adams’s Lodgings, at Eleven O Clock Tomorrow Morning. The Points to be considered, are 1. Passports to be given to and received from the British Minister, for British and American Vessells,1 and 2d. Preparations for the Signature of the definitive Treaty.2 Both upon the Propositions of the British Minister Plenipotentiary.

Addressed: A Son Excellence / Monsieur Franklin, / Ministre Plenipotentiaire / des Etats Unis de L’Amerique pour la Paix / en Son Hotel a Passy / Pres Paris

[Note numbering follows the Franklin Papers source.]

9JA sent a similar letter to Jay (N.-Y. Hist. Soc.).

1The language of these passports would be vigorously debated; see the headnote to BF’s Passport for British Vessels, Feb. 1.

2JA drafted a definitive treaty on Feb. 1, which contained only minor changes from the preliminary treaty. After the Feb. 3 meeting he noted on the verso that Jay and BF had approved it, but “Some Additions were proposed.” Adams Papers, XIV, 227–30. One of those additions undoubtedly concerned trade, a topic BF had already broached with Fitzherbert on Jan. 24; see the headnote to BF’s Passport for British Vessels, Feb. 1. For the next seven months the American peace commissioners would attempt in vain to overcome British resistance to amending the preliminary agreement of Nov. 30, 1782.

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