New York Assembly. Motion that a
Committee be Appointed to Consider a
Letter from the Secretary for Foreign Affairs1
[New York, January 23, 1787]
Resolved, That it is the opinion of this Committee, that a Committee be appointed to consider and report on the letter from the Secretary of Foreign Affairs to his Excellency the Governor, and the papers accompanying it,2 together with the act of the Legislature entitled “An act relative to debts due to persons within the enemies lines;” passed the twelfth of July, one thousand seven hundred and eighty-two, and another act of the Legislature, entitled “An act for granting a more effectual relief in cases of certain trespasses;” passed the seventeenth of March, one thousand seven hundred and eighty-three.3
New York Assembly Journal description begins Journal of the Assembly of the State of New York (Publisher and place vary, 1782–1788). description ends , 1787, 20.
1. This motion is also printed in The [New York] Daily Advertiser, January 24, 1787, and is preceded by the following paragraph: “It was moved by Mr. Hamilton, that the house adopt the following resolution.”
2. On May 3, 1786, John Jay, Secretary for Foreign Affairs, had written to Governor George Clinton requesting information on the compliance of New York with a congressional resolution of January 14, 1784, which called on the several states to repeal all laws inconsistent with the treaty of peace between the United States and Great Britain. In reply Clinton sent Jay extracts from the journals of the Assembly and Senate of March 30 and 31, 1784. The resolution enclosed by Clinton reads in part as follows:
“Resolved, That as on the one Hand, the Rules of Justice do not require, so on the other, the public Tranquillity will not permit, that such Adherents, who have been attainted, should be restored to the Rights of Citizenship.
“And that there can be no Reason, for restoring Property, which has been confiscated or forfeited, the more especially, as no Compensation is offered, on the Part of the said King, and his Adherents, for the Damages sustained by this State and its Citizens, from the Desolation aforesaid.
“Resolved therefore, That while this Legislature entertain the highest Sense of national Honor, of the Sanction of Treaties, and of the Deference which is due to the Advice of the United States in Congress Assembled, they find it inconsistent with their Duty to comply with the Recommendation of the said United States, on the subject Matter of the fifth Article of the said Definitive Treaty of Peace.” (New York Senate Journal description begins Journal of the Senate of the State of New York (Publisher and place vary, 1782–1788). description ends , 1784, 75.)
The letters from both Jay and Clinton may be found in the Papers of the Continental Congress, National Archives.
3. The motion was referred to a committee of which H was chairman. This committee reported on March 10 and March 16.