Thomas Jefferson Papers

From Thomas Jefferson to the Governors of Virginia and Maryland, 31 May 1786

To the Governors of Virginia and Maryland

Paris May 31. 1786.


I Have communicated to Congress this day a copy of the resolutions of a Committee appointed here for the purpose of considering what may be done to improve the commerce between this country and the U.S. together with a copy of the contract between the Farmers general and Mr. Morris to which those resolutions refer. These resolutions have received the sanction of government and been officially communicated to me. As the subject is peculiarly and principally interesting to the states of Maryland and Virginia, and prompt notice is above all things necessary to prevent individual merchants from monopolizing this year’s benefit, I have thought it my duty to communicate by different conveyances to the Governors of each of those states, copies of the resolutions and contract, that their citizens may have as early notice of them as possible. I have the honour to be with sentiments of the highest respect, your Excellency’s most obedient and most humble servt.,

Th: Jefferson

RC (Vi); actually this is a PrC; at foot of the original text TJ had written: “His Excellency the Governor of” and then, after making the PrC, he added “Virginia” to the PrC and “Maryland” to the original, which became the RC for that state (MdAA). The retained PrC (DLC) bears at foot of text: “His Excellency the Governor of Maryland, Virginia,” thus affording an interesting illustration of the manner in which TJ employed his copying press on a day when he was dispatching copies of the Berni resolutions in many directions. Noted in SJL as sent “vîa London, by Appleton.” Enclosures: (1) Copies of contract of Robert Morris with the farmers-general, 11 Jan. 1785 (Vi, MdAA; see also notes to TJ to Jay, 27 May 1786). (2) Copies of resolutions agreed upon at Berni, 24 May 1786; see Vergennes to TJ, 30 May 1786.

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