George Washington Papers

From George Washington to Thomas Jefferson, 10 September 1793

To Thomas Jefferson

Chester [Pa.] Septr 10th 1793

Dear Sir,

I return, from this place, the Papers which you put into my hands on the Road, to day.1

The unpromising state of the Negotiation at Madrid, and the opinion of the Commissioners that their Commission should be withdrawn, and matters at that Court placed in Statu quo, deser⟨ves⟩ very serious consideration. I pray you to give it; & if it rests altogether with the Executive (after the Agency th⟨e⟩ Senate has had in the business) let me know the result.2

Mr Carmichael must not be the person left there; for, from him we should never hear a tittle of wha⟨t⟩ is going forward at the Court of Madrid.3 I am Your Affecte

Go: Washington

ALS, DLC: Jefferson Papers; Df, in Bartholomew Dandridge, Jr.’s, writing, DNA: RG 59, Miscellaneous Letters; LB, DNA: RG 59, George Washington’s Correspondence with His Secretaries of State. The letters in angle brackets are supplied from the draft. Jefferson docketed the ALS as received 12 September.

1The only identified enclosure was a letter from William Carmichael and William Short, the U.S. commissioners charged with negotiating a variety of issues with Spain, to Jefferson of 6 June (Jefferson Papers description begins Julian P. Boyd et al., eds. The Papers of Thomas Jefferson. 40 vols. to date. Princeton, N.J., 1950–. description ends , 26:206–12). In that letter, the commissioners reported that, because of Spain’s recent alliance with England against France, they had delayed pressing negotiations involving the navigation of the Mississippi River and territorial limits, and they requested new instructions.

2Jefferson responded to Carmichael and Short on 11 Sept., telling them, “the President approves of your proceedings and views. Proceed in the plan your letter of June 6. expresses; we make no other alterations in our instructions” (Jefferson Papers description begins Julian P. Boyd et al., eds. The Papers of Thomas Jefferson. 40 vols. to date. Princeton, N.J., 1950–. description ends , 27:88–89).

3Carmichael failed to write regularly to his diplomatic superiors (David Humphreys to GW, 4 April 1793, and n.3).

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