Thomas Jefferson Papers

To Thomas Jefferson from Joshua Johnson, 5 November 1790

From Joshua Johnson

London 5 November 1790


I had the honor to write you the 3rd. Instant by this conveyance; Yesterday Morning a Messenger arrived from Madrid, with dispatches from Mr. Fitzherbert to the Duke of Leeds, which occasioned the publication of the extraordinary Gazette, inclosed; and which has produced many conjectures. The Effect it has on the Stocks was considerable; they rose 4 per Ct. in the forepart of the day, but declined towards the close of the Market; I have exerted my best endeavors to find out whether, there was any relaxation in the Impress Service and could discover none, tho’ it was conjectured that orders were issued in a day, or two, to break up the Rendezvous Houses and Press Gangs. I was informed that the Guards who had been drafted for Foreign Service, and order’d to Portsmouth for embarkation, had received counter orders to join their Regiments. This, I think, carries the appearance of an accomodation more than any thing I see in the extraordinary Gazette. The sudden confutation of the wishes and expectations of numbers has created much discontent and will in all probability draw down on the Ministry the weighty opposition of Army and Navy on the meeting of Parliament. I will be watchfull over the future movements of Government, and transmit you every information worth your attention, being always with the sincerest respect & Esteem Sir, Your most obedt & very humble Servt,

Joshua Johnson

RC (DNA: RG 59, CD); endorsed by TJ as received 17 Jan. 1791 and so recorded in SJL. Dupl (same); at head of text: “Copy per the New York Packett.” Recorded in SJL as received 12 Mch. 1791. FC (same). Enclosure: Copy of The London Gazette, Extraordinary, 4 Nov. 1790 (same).

On 6 Nov. 1790 James Maury wrote TJ: “To day’s post bringing the Important Intelligence as per the inclosed Handbill, I avail of the first opportunity to communicate it” (RC in DNA: RG 59, CD, endorsed by TJ as received 23 Jan. 1791 and so recorded; the enclosed handbill may have been another copy of The London Gazette, Extraordinary, of 4 Nov. 1790).

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