Thomas Jefferson Papers

American Commissioners to Carmarthen, 4 April 1786

American Commissioners to Carmarthen

Grosvenor Square April 4th. 1786

My Lord

Agreably to your Lordships request expressed to one of us in Conversation, and again communicated to us through Mr. Fraser, we have drawn up the enclosed Project of a Treaty of Commerce, which we do ourselves the Honour to propose to the Consideration of his Majesty’s Ministers.

We have the honor to be



Tr (DNA: PCC, No. 86); in Smith’s hand; endorsed by him. Tr (DLC); also in Smith’s hand; endorsed. Not in SJL. Enclosure: As explained in Commissioners to Jay, 25 Apr. 1786, the projet submitted to Carmarthen consisted of only “five or six Articles of the former Plan”; these are printed in Dipl. Corr., 1783–89 description begins The Diplomatic Correspondence of the United States of America, from the Signing of the Definitive Treaty of Peace … to the Adoption of the Constitution, Washington, Blair & Rives, 1837, 3 vol. description ends , i, 603–4. In his Autobiography, Ford, description begins Paul Leicester Ford, ed., The Writings of Thomas Jefferson, “Letterpress Edition,” N.Y., 1892–1899 description ends i, 89, TJ wrote: “on my arrival in London we agreed on a very summary form of treaty, proposing an exchange of citizenship for our citizens, our ships, and our productions generally, except as to office.” In this he clearly and incredibly confused the projet that he had submitted to Adams on 28 July 1785 with the “five or six Articles of the former Plan” enclosed in the present letter.

In MHi: AMT there is a note from Mr. Fraser to Adams, 3 Apr. 1786, informing him that he had not failed to relate to Carmarthen the conversation they had had, and added: “He is directed to inform Mr. Adams that as the Paper which his Lordship received from him some Time ago was not confined to Commercial Matters only, his Lordship would wish to receive from Mr. Adams and Mr. Jefferson the Project of a Treaty of Commerce containing only such Points as are necessary for that Purpose.” See TJ to Jay, 23 Apr. 1786; Commissioners to Jay, 25 Apr. 1786.

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