John Thaxter to Abigail Adams
York Town May 9th. 1778
I have had the pleasure of receiving your agreeable favour of the 9th. of April.
I am so exceedingly hurried in copying the Treaties (which are long beyond bounds) that I have had no time to write you fully. Six Copies of the Treaties are wanted, and it falls to me to make them out, as My Companion is absent. Have you done? Have you done? is the Cry every hour of the day. I am almost tired out. However it is a matter of so much Consequence, that I will persevere.1
I must beg leave to refer you to the inclosed papers for news. I hope to see Philadelphia shortly as Report says the Hessian Troops are embarking for Europe, and the English for the West Indies. I hope it will prove true.
With the greatest Respect I am Madam, your very Humble Servt.,
J Thaxter Junr.
RC (Adams Papers); endorsed: “May 9.” Enclosed newspapers not found or identified.
1. The reason for the hurry was, of course, so that the ratifications (which incorporated full texts of the Franco-American treaties concluded in February) could be signed and rushed back to France in a sufficient number of copies to overcome the perils of the sea and British cruisers. See JCC description begins Worthington C. Ford and others, eds., Journals of the Continental Congress, 1774–1789, Washington, 1904–1937; 34 vols. description ends , 11:463–464. One of Thaxter’s copies of the Treaty of Amity and Commerce and of the text of the ratification, dated 4 May and signed and sealed by Pres. Henry Laurens, is in the Adams Papers under that date. It was sent to the American Commissioners in Paris but evidently found to be not needed because other copies had preceded it.