George Washington Papers

Tobias Lear to Thomas Jefferson, 11 June 1793

Tobias Lear to Thomas Jefferson

[Philadelphia] June 11th 1793

The President of the United States sends to the Secretary of State a letter & enclosures which he has just received from the Governor of New York, respecting the detention of an Armed vessel which was about to sail from New York, supposed to be commissioned as a privateer by one of the European belligerent Powers.1

The President wishes the Secretary of State to lay these documents before the Heads of the other Departments, as soon as may be, and to let the President know what is their opinion, as well as the Secretary’s of State, of the measures which should be taken in the case—and what answer should be given to the Governor’s letter.2 If the[re] be a concurrence of opinion as to the Answer which ought to be given to the Governor, the President wishes the Secretary to draft it agreeably thereto.3

AL, DLC: Jefferson Papers.

1For the letter and enclosures concerning the sloop Polly, now outfitted as a French privateer and renamed the Republican, see George Clinton to GW, 9 June, and notes 1, 4.

3After receiving the cabinet opinion, GW instructed Henry Knox to write to Clinton, and Jefferson to write to Richard Harison, the federal attorney for the District of New York (JPP description begins Dorothy Twohig, ed. The Journal of the Proceedings of the President, 1793–1797. Charlottesville, Va., 1981. description ends , 169; see also Jefferson to GW, 12 June [second letter], and notes).

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