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increasing fast, surprised him so much that he ran away. He returned, however, and found it burst by the expansion of the contained fluid.
I wish I had somewhat more interesting to tell you of, but I am this moment risen from the dinner, which I annually give to the auditors of the treasurer's account. I would not delay my thanks to you, and I trust you will make some allowance for the effects of the festivities of the day, which have, I fear, cramped my accuracy; but I can assure you they have not diminished the real gratitude, with which I declare myself your obliged and faithful servant,
TO WILLIAM CARMICHAEL.
Proposed Treaty with Morocco.
Passy, 15 December, 1783 MY DEAR FRIEND, I am much concerned to find by your letter to my grandson, that you are hurt by my long silence, and that you ascribe it to a supposed diminution of my friendship. Believe me, that is by no means the case; but I am too much harassed by a variety of correspondence, together with gout and gravel, which induce me to postpone doing what I often fully intend to do, and particularly writing, where the urgent necessity of business does not seem to require its being done immediately, my sitting too much at the desk having already almost killed me; besides, since Mr. Jay's residence here, I imagined he might keep you fully informed of what was material for you to know; and I beg you to be assured of my constant and sincere esteem and affection.
I do not know whether you have been informed, that a Mr. Montgomery, who lives at Alicant, took upon himself (for I think he had no authority) to make overtures last winter, in behalf of our States, towards a treaty with the Emperor of Morocco. In consequence of his proceedings I received a letter in August from a person, who acquainted me, that he was arrived in Spain by the Emperor's order, and was to come to Paris, there to receive and conduct to Morocco the minister of Congress appointed to make that treaty, intimating at the same time an expectation of money to defray his expenses. I communicated the letter to Mr. Jay. The conduct of Mr. Montgomery appeared to us very extraordinary and irregular; and the idea of a messenger from Morocco coming to Paris to meet and conduct a minister of Congress, appearing absurd and extravagant, as well as the demand of money by a person unknown, I made no answer to the letter; and I know not whether Mr. Jay made any to Mr. Montgomery, who wrote about the same time. But I have lately received another letter from the same person, a copy of which I enclose, together with my answer open for your perusal, and it is submitted to your discretion whether to forward it or not. The Mr. Crocco, who writes to me, having been, as he says, at Madrid, you possibly may know more of him than I can, and judge whether he is really a person in credit with the Emperor, and sent as he pretends to be, or not rather an Escroc, as the French call cheats and impostors.
I would not be wanting in any thing proper for me to do towards keeping that Prince in good humor with us, till the pleasure of Congress is known, and therefore would answer Mr. Crocco, if he be in his employ; but am loth to commit myself in correspondence with
a fripon. It will be strange, if, being at Madrid, he did not address himself to you. With great and unalterable regard, I am ever, my dear friend, yours most affectionately,
TO GIACOMO FRANCESCO CROCCO.
Paris, 15 December, 1783.
I have just received the letter you did me the honor of writing to me the 25th past. I did indeed receive your former letter of July, but, being totally a stranger to the mentioned proceedings of Mr. Montgomery, and having no orders from Congress on the subject, I knew not how to give you any satisfactory answer, till I should receive further information; and I communicated your letter to Mr. Jay, minister of the United States for Spain, in whose district Mr. Montgomery is, and who is more at hand than I am for commencing that negotiation.
Mr. Jay, who is at present in England, has possibly written to you, though his letter may have miscarried, to acquaint you, that Mr. Montgomery had probably no authority from Congress to take the step he has done, and that it was not likely, that they, desiring to make a treaty with the Emperor, would think of putting his Majesty to the trouble of sending a person to Paris to receive and conduct their minister, since they have ships, and could easily land him at Cadiz, or present him at one of the Emperor's ports. We have, however, written to Congress, acquainting them with what we had been informed of, the good and favorable disposition of his Imperial Majesty to enter into a treaty of amity and commerce with the United States; and
we have no doubt but that, as soon as their affairs are a little settled, which, by so severe a war carried on in the bowels of their country by one of the most powerful nations of Europe, have necessarily been much deranged, they will readily manifest equally good dispositions, and take all the proper steps to cultivate and secure the friendship of a monarch, whose character I know they have long esteemed and respected. I am, Sir, &c.
TO THE PRESIDENT OF CONGRESS.
American Commissioners. — Signing of the Definitive
Treaties. — British Court. — American Constitutions published in the French Language. — Treaties with European Powers. — Paul Jones.
Passy, 25 December, 1783. SIR, Not having heard of the appointment of a new secretary for foreign affairs, I take the liberty of addressing this despatch directly to your Excellency. I received by Captain Barney a letter from the late President, directed to the Commissioners, dated November the 1st, with a set of instructions, dated the 29th of October, a resolution of the same date respecting Hamburg, and another of the 1st of November, relating to Captain Paul Jones, all which will be duly regarded.
Captain Jones, in passing through England, communicated these papers to Mr. Adams, then at London. Mr. Adams, disappointed in not finding among them the commission we had been made to expect, empowering us to make a treaty of commerce with England, wrote to me, that he imagined it might be contained in a packet that was directed to me, and requested to
be immediately informed; adding, that, in case no such commission was come, he should depart directly for Holland; so I suppose he is now there. Mr. Laurens is gone to England, with an intention of embarking soon for America. Mr. Jay is at Bath, but expected here daily. The English ministers, the Duke of Manchester and Mr. Hartley, are both at present in Parliament. As soon as either of them returns, we shall endeavour to obtain an additional article to the treaty, explaining that mentioned in the instructions.
The affairs of Ireland are still unsettled. The Parliament and volunteers are at variance; the latter are uneasy, that, in the late negotiations for a treaty of commerce between England and America, the British ministers had made no mention of Ireland, and they seem to desire a separate treaty of commerce between America and that kingdom.
It was certainly disagreeable to the English ministers, that all their treaties for peace were carried on under the eye of the French court. This began to appear towards the conclusion, when Mr. Hartley refused going to Versailles, to sign there with the other powers our definitive treaty, and insisted on its being done at Paris, which we in good humor complied with, but at an earlier hour, that we might have time to acquaint Count de Vergennes before he was to sign with the Duke of Manchester.
The Dutch definitive treaty was not then ready, and the British court now insists on finishing it either at London or the Hague. If, therefore, the commission to us, which has been so long delayed, is still intended, perhaps it will be well to instruct us to treat either here or at London, as we may find most convenient.
The treaty may be conducted, even there, in concert and in the confidence of communication with the