George Washington Papers

To George Washington from Thomas Jefferson, 25 February 1793

From Thomas Jefferson

[Philadelphia] Feb. 25. 1793.

Th: Jefferson has the honor to inform the President that he called this evening on M. de Ternant, who produced to him the original letter of M. Le Brun instructing him to apply to our government for two millions of livres to be laid out in flour & one million in salted provisions.1

AL, DNA: RG 59, Miscellaneous Letters; AL (letterpress copy), DLC: Jefferson Papers.

1Ternant’s account of his meeting with Jefferson is different. In his letter of 28 Feb. to Lebrun, the French foreign minister, Ternant wrote that he viewed Jefferson’s demand to see the letter as an affront to the dignity of France, and therefore he felt bound to refuse it (Turner, Correspondence of the French Ministers, description begins Frederick J. Turner, ed. Correspondence of the French Ministers to the United States, 1791–1797. Washington, D.C., 1904. In Annual Report of the American Historical Association for the Year 1903, vol. 2. description ends 180–81). The letter from Lebrun to Ternant of 19 Sept. 1792 has not been identified, but for Ternant’s reply of 13 Feb. 1793, see ibid., 170–76. For the process that resulted in GW’s approval of Ternant’s request, see Jefferson to GW, 8 Feb., nn.1–2, and Cabinet Opinion on the U.S. Debt to France, 25 Feb., and note 2. The threat of famine in France prompted the partial allocation of the debt payment to provisions (Edmund Randolph to GW, 14 Feb.).

Index Entries