Thomas Jefferson Papers

From Thomas Jefferson to John Jay, 11 May 1785

To John Jay

Paris May 11. 1785.


I was honoured on the 2d. instant with the receipt of your favor of Mar. 15. inclosing the resolution of Congress of the 10th. of the same month appointing me their Minister plenipotentiary at this court; and also of your second letter of Mar. 22. covering the commission and letter of credence for that appointment. I beg permission through you, Sir, to testify to Congress my gratitude for this new mark of their favor, and my assurances of endeavoring to merit it by a faithful attention to the discharge of the duties annexed to it. Fervent zeal is all which I can be sure of carrying into their service, and where I fail thro a want of those powers which nature and circumstances deny me, I shall rely on their indulgence, and much also on the candour with which your goodness will present my proceedings to their eye. The kind terms in which you are pleased to notify this honor to me require my sincere thanks. I beg you to accept them, and to be assured of the perfect esteem with which I have the honor to be Sir your most obedient and most humble servt.,

Th: Jefferson

RC (DNA: PCC, No. 87, i). With RC is fragment of wrapper bearing the following notation: “Letters from Mr. Jefferson at Paris from 11 May 1785 to 31. December 1786 inclusive and from 5 February 1788 to 23 November 1789. inclusive.” Dft (DLC: TJ Papers); has numerous deletions and insertions, but differs from RC in phraseology only. Tr (DNA: PCC, No. 107). Entry in SJL reads: “Mr. Jay. thanks to Congress for appointment”; opposite the entry is the notation: “by Mr. Adams. May packet.” Entry in SJPL reads: “Jay John. Receipt of my commission as Minister Plenipotentiary.”

Index Entries