Nonintercourse with Great Britain
[18 April 1794]
On 2 April Clark moved a resolution calling for nonintercourse with Great Britain, and on 14 April the Committee of the Whole reported the resolution to the House (Philadelphia Gazette, 3 Apr. 1794; Annals of Congress description begins Debates and Proceedings in the Congress of the United States … (42 vols.; Washington, 1834–56). description ends , 3d Cong., 1st sess., 594). JM offered the following amendment on 18 April.
“Whereas the injuries suffered and likely to be suffered by the United States, from a violation of our neutral rights and commercial interests on the part of Great Britain, and also from a failure in the execution of the 7th article of the treaty of peace make it expedient that our commercial intercourse with that nation should not remain as extensive as it now is, therefore resolved, that from the day of next our commercial intercourse with that nation be suspended.”1
Philadelphia Gazette, 19 Apr. 1794 (reprinted in Gazette of the U.S., 19 Apr. 1794, General Advertiser, 19 Apr. 1794, and Dunlap and Claypoole’s Am. Daily Advertiser, 21 Apr. 1794).
1. The newspaper account of the proceedings continued: “The chief difference, our readers will observe, between this proposition and the original resolution is, that in this it is not specified on what conditions the intercourse shall be restored; leaving, therefore, to a future legislature, when they are satisfied with the reparation which negociation may procure from Great-Britain, to renew our commercial relations with that country.” On 21 Apr. the House agreed to JM’s amendment, filled up the blanks with the date 1 Nov., and passed the resolution. JM was appointed to the committee to prepare a bill pursuant to the resolution. On 23 Apr. Clark reported “a bill to suspend the importation of certain goods, wares, and merchandise,” which was passed by the House on 25 Apr. but defeated by Vice-President Adams’s tie-breaking vote in the Senate on 28 Apr. (Annals of Congress description begins Debates and Proceedings in the Congress of the United States … (42 vols.; Washington, 1834–56). description ends , 3d Cong., 1st sess., 602–3, 605, 90).