Thomas Jefferson Papers

To Thomas Jefferson from Joseph Mathias Gérard de Rayneval, 24 August 1799

From Joseph Mathias Gérard de Rayneval

A Paris le 6. fructidor an 7. 24. aout 1799.


Lorsque nous avons eu des raports ensemble, vous avez bien voulu m’accorder estime, confiance et amitié, et je conserve comme une chose bien précieuse pour moi la lettre dont vous m’honorates lors de votre départ. j’ose reclamer aujourd’hui l’effet des sentiments que Vous y avez exprimés. La circonstance est on ne peut pas plus intéressante pour moi. Mr. Dupont, porteur de cette lettre, et qui a bien voulu se charger de mes intérêts, vous les expliquera, et mettra sous vos yeux les titres sur lesquels m’a demande est fondée. Je me flatte d’avance, Monsieur, que Vous la trouverez juste, et que Vous m’accorderez votre puissant appui pour la faire réussir; je me flatte également, que Vous serez bien convaincu de ma reconnoissance pour un service aussi signalé, ainsi que de l’attachement et de la parfaite considération avec lesquels j’ai l’honneur d’être, Monsieur,

Votre trés-humble et trés-obeissant Serviteur


editors’ translation

Paris 6 Fructidor Year 7. 24 August 1799.


At the time when we were in contact socially, you kindly extended to me esteem, confidence, and friendship, and I preserve as something very precious to me the letter with which you honored me at the time of your departure. Today I make bold to lay claim to the result of the sentiments that you expressed therein. The situation is of the highest possible interest for me. Mr. Du Pont, the bearer of this letter, and who has kindly taken on my interests, will explain them to you and will show you the titles on which my request is based. I am convinced in advance, Sir, that you will find it just, and that you will grant me your powerful assistance to make it succeed; I am likewise convinced that you will be persuaded of my gratitude for such an outstanding service, as well as of the affection and the perfect consideration with which I have the honor to be, Sir,

Your very humble and very obedient Servant


RC (ViW); at foot of first page: “Mr. Jefferson”; endorsed by TJ as received 21 Mch. 1800 and so recorded in SJL. Enclosure: Memorandum, undated, stating that the Wabash Company gave Conrad Alexandre Gérard, while he was French minister to the United States, a parcel of the lands granted the company by act of Congress; stating further that the king of France authorized Gérard to receive the gift, but no information has been received by the heirs of the deceased Gérard other than an intimation that the entire Wabash concession might be annulled; and inquiring about the status of this gift to Gérard made in recognition of his services during the American Revolution and in the negotiation of the treaties of 1778 (MS in same; entirely in Gérard de Rayneval’s hand).

TJ had written his parting lettre to Gérard de Rayneval in New York on 6 Apr. 1790.

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