Imágenes de páginas

arrest shall occasion to the proprietors; and it shall be further allowed to use in the service of the captors, the whole or any part of the military stores so detained, paying the owners the full value of the same, to be ascertained by the current price at the place of its destination. But if the other contracting party will not consent to discontinue the confiscation of contraband goods, then that it be stipulated, that if the master of the vessel stopped, will deliver out the goods charged to be contraband, he shall be admitted to do it, and the vessel shall not in that case be carried into any port; but shall be allowed to proceed on her voyage.

6. That in the same case, when either of the contracting parties shall happen to be engaged in war with any other power, all goods, not contraband, belonging to the subjects of that other power, and shipped in the bottoms of the party hereto, who is not engaged in the war, shall be entirely free. And that to ascertain what shall constitute the blockade of any place or port, it shall be understood to be in such predicament, when the assailing power shall have taken such a station as to expose to imminent danger any ship or ships, that would attempt to sail in or out of the said port; and that no vessel of the party, who is not engaged in the said war, shall be stopped without a material and well-grounded cause; and in such cases justice shall be done, and an indemnification given, without loss of time to the persons aggrieved, and thus stopped without sufficient cause.

7. That no right be stipulated for aliens to hold real property within these States, this being utterly inadmissible by their several laws and policy; but when on the death of any person holding real estate within the territories of one of the contracting parties, such real estate would by their laws descend on a subject or citizen of the other, were he not disqualified by alienage, then he shall be allowed a reasonable time to dispose of the same, and withdraw the proceeds without molestation.

8. That such treaties be made for a term not exceeding ten years from the exchange of ratification.

9. That these instructions be considered as supplementary to those of October 29th, 1783; and not as revoking, except when

they contradict them. That where in treaty with a particular nation they can procure particular advantages, to the specification of which we have been unable to descend, our object in these instructions having been to form outlines only and general principles of treaty with many nations, it is our expectation they will procure them, though not pointed out in these instructions; and where they may be able to form treaties on principles which, in their judgment, will be more beneficial to the United States than those herein directed to be made their basis, they are permitted to adopt such principles. That as to the duration of treaties, though we have proposed to restrain them to the term of ten years, yet they are at liberty to extend the same as far as fifteen years with any nation which may pertinaciously insist thereon. And that it will be agreeable to us to have supplementary treaties with France, the United Netherlands and Sweden, which may bring the treaties we have entered into with them as nearly as may be to the principles of those now directed; but that this be not pressed, if the proposal should be found disagreeable.

Resolved, That treaties of amity, or of amity and commerce, be entered into with Morocco, and the Regencies of Algiers, Tunis and Tripoli, to continue for the same term of ten years, or for a term as much longer as can be procured.

That our Ministers, to be commissioned for treating with foreign nations, make known to the Emperor of Morocco the great satisfaction which Congress feel from the amicable disposition he has shown towards these States, and his readiness to enter into alliance with them. That the occupations of the war, and distance of our situation have prevented our meeting his friendship so early as we wished. But the powers are now delegated to them for entering into treaty with him, in the execution of which they are ready to proceed, and that as to the expenses of his Minister, they do therein what is for the honor and interest of the United States.

Resolved, That a commission be issued to Mr. J. Adams, Mr. B. Franklin, and Mr. T. Jefferson, giving powers to them, or the greater part of them, to make and receive propositions for such

treaties of amity and commerce, and to negotiate and sign the same, transmitting them to Congress for their final ratification: and that such commission be in force for a term not exceeding two years.


Report of a conference with the Count de Vergennes on the subject of the Commerce of the United States with France.*

The next levee day at Versailles, I meant to bring again under the view of the Count de Vergennes, the whole subject of our commerce with France; but the number of audiences of ambassadors and other ministers, which take place, of course, before mine, and which seldom, indeed, leave me an opportunity of audience at all, prevented me that day. I was only able to ask the Count de Vergennes, as a particular favor, that he would permit me to wait on him some day that week. He did so, and I went to Versailles the Friday following, (the 9th of December.) M. de Reyneval was with the Count. Our conversation began with the usual topic; that the trade of the United States had not yet learned the way to France, but con


PARIS, January 2d, 1786.

SIR,-Several conferences and letters having passed between the Count de Vergennes and myself, on the subject of the commerce of this country with the United States, I think them sufficiently interesting to be communicated to Congress. They are stated in the form of a report, and are herein enclosed. The length of this despatch, perhaps, needs apology. Yet I have not been able to abridge it, without omitting circumstances which I thought Congress would rather choose to know. Some of the objects of these conferences present but small hopes for the present, but they seem to admit a possibility of success at some future



I am Sir, your most obedient and most humble servant.

[The above extract from the report referred to in the preceding letter embraces everything interesting therein, not communicated to the reader in the previous correspondence.]

tinued to centre in England, though no longer obliged by law to go there. I observed, that the real cause of this, was to be found in the difference of the commercial arrangements in the two countries; that merchants would not, and could not trade but where there was to be some gain; that the commerce between two countries could not be kept up, but by an exchange of commodities; that, if an American merchant was forced to carry his produce to London, it could not be expected he would make a voyage from thence to France, with the money, to lay it out here; and, in like manner, that if he could bring his commodities, with advantage, to this country, he would not make another voyage to England, with the money, to lay it out there, but would take in exchange the merchandise of this country. The Count de Vergennes agreed to this, and particularly that where there was no exchange of merchandise, there could be no durable commerce; and that it was natural for merchants to take their returns in the port where they sold their cargo. I desired his permission then, to take a summary view of the productions of the United States, that we might see which of them could be brought here to advantage.

1. Rice. France gets from the Mediterranean a rice not so good indeed, but cheaper than ours. He said that they bought of our rice, but that they got from Egypt also, rice of a very fine quality. I observed that such was the actual state of their commerce, in that article, that they take little from us. 2. Indigo. They make a plenty in their own colonies. He observed that they did, and that they thought it better than ours. 3. Flour, fish, and provisions of all sorts, they produce for themselves. That these articles might, therefore, be considered as not existing, for commerce, between the United States and the kingdom of France.

I proceeded to those capable of becoming objects of exchange between the two nations. 1. Peltry and furs. Our posts being in the hands of the English, we are cut off from that article. I am not sure even, whether we are not obliged to buy of them, for our own use. When these posts are given up, if ever they are, we shall be able to furnish France with skins and furs, to

the amount of two millions of livres, in exchange for her merchandise; but at present, these articles are to be counted as nothing. 2. Potash. An experiment is making whether this can be brought here. We hope it may, but at present it stands for nothing. He observed that it was much wanted in France, and he thought it would succeed. 3. Naval stores. Trials are also making on these, as subjects of commerce with France. They are heavy, and the voyage long. The result, therefore, is doubtful. At present, they are as nothing in our commerce with this country. 4. Whale oil. I told him I had great hopes that the late diminution of duty would enable us to bring this article, with advantage, to France; that a merchant was just arrived (Mr. Barrett) who proposed to settle at L'Orient, for the purpose of selling the cargoes of this article, and choosing the returns. That he had informed me, that in the first year, it would be necessary to take one-third in money, and the remainder only in merchandise; because the fishermen require, indispensably, some money. But he thought that after the first year, the merchandise of the preceding year, would always produce money for the ensuing one, and that the whole amount would continue to be taken annually afterwards, in merchandise. I added, that though the diminution of duty was expressed to be but for one year, yet I hoped they would find their advantage in renewing and continuing it; for that if they intended really to admit it for one year only, the fishermen would not find it worth while to rebuild their vessels, and to prepare themselves for the business. The Count expressed satisfaction on the view of commercial exchange held up by this article. He made no answer as to the continuance of it; and I did not choose to tell him, at that time, that we should claim its continuance under their treaty with the Hanseatic towns, which fixes this duty for them, and our own treaty, which gives us the rights of the most favored nation. 5. Tobacco. I recalled to the memory of the Count de Vergennes, the letter I had written to him on this article; and the object of the present conversation being, how to facilitate the exchange of commerciable articles between the two countries, I pressed that of tobacco, in this point of view; observed that France, at

« AnteriorContinuar »