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CHAP, III.]

HIS CONFIDENCE IN JEFFERSON.

149

would seem as if neither he nor the Spanish Commissioners were to be satisfied with anything this Government can do; but, on the contrary, are resolved to drive matters to extremity.

Yours, etc.

The point here left to the three heads of departments will be hereafter mentioned. It had nothing to do with the official communications to Mr. Hammond, or to the Spanish Government, which have been the subjects of the preceding remarks: but none the less distinctly does it corroborate the view we have presented of the President's feelings and determinations.

OHAPTER IV,

1793.

Correspondence with Genet-Concessions of France-Genet's Complajöus and Jefferson's

Replies–Genet assumes an Angry and Criminatory Tone-His Proposal to stop Pay. ments on the St. Domingo Drafts—Discussions in relation to the Treaty of 1778, etc.. The President goes to Mount Vernon-Genet Arms and Commissions the Little Democrat at Philadelphia-Mifflin reports her about to sail-Sends Dallas to Genet-Jeffer. son visits Genet, and Particulars of their Interview-Genet intimates the Vessel will not sail before the President's Return-Cabinet Meeting, July 8th-President's Return expected in two or three Days Hamilton and Knox propose to fire upon the Vessel if she attempts to pass Mud Island-Jefferson dissents-Extracts from the two Papers-Was Jefferson's scorching Reply merited-Difficulties of his Position--His Private Opinion of Genet-Little Democrat drops down to Chester-President reached Philadelphia on the 11th-His warm Note to Jefferson, and Jefferson's Answer-Cabinet Meeting on the 12th-Jefferson's previous Action sustained Judge Marshall's Manner of stating the Facts-Jefferson's Decided Letter to Spanish Commissioners-No Retreat in the President's Policy-Jefferson tenders his Resignation, to take effect 1st of September -Cabinet Discussions on demanding Recall of Genet-On an Appeal to the PeopleOn Rules of Neutrality--On convening Congress Particulars of a Personal Interview between Washington and Jefferson-Washington solicits a Delay of his ResignationJefferson's Feelings on the Occasion- Jefferson's Consent, and the President's ReplyJefferson's Draft of Letter demanding Genet's Recall-Washington and Jefferson voted down on a Clause-A Private Draft of Hamilton's not brought forward-Character of Jefferson's Production-A Feature in the Ana-Genet's Visit to New York--The Certificate-makers--Genet's Appeal to the Public -A Hint of the degree of Control Jeffer. son exercised over Freneau's Paper-Yellow Fever appears in Philadelphia Outrage of Du Plaine-British Orders in Council-French Retaliatory Decrees-Georgia preparing to chastise the Creeks-Cabinet Action on the four preceding Subjects Jefferson's Excuse for Subscribing to the Resolution respecting England-His Dispatches in regard to Du Plaine, and to Gov. Telfair---Progress of the Yellow Fever-Jefferson's Draft of Instructions to Morris England satisfied with Conduct of our Government in regard to Neutrality Laws,Persists, however, in her Aggressions--Hamilton Ill with Yellow Fever-Jefferson sends Genet Copy of Demand for his Recall-Arranges his Business, and carries his Daughter Home-Family Correspondence brought dowPresident deliberates on convening Congress elsewhere-He consults the Cabinet and Mr. Madison-Pendleton's Letter to Washington against Hamilton and his Measures.com President's noticeable Reply-Genet's Reply to Jefferson on receiving a Copy of the Demand for his own Recall-Judge Marshall's Selections from this ReplyJefferson does not answer Genet–Letter to Ceracchi_Visit of the latter to United States, and Statues and Busts executed by him-Cabinet Discussion on sending Genet out of the Country-On the Construction to be given to Congress of the so-called Proclamation of Neutrality--Hamilton's and Randolph's Drafts of Explanation rejected -Jefferson's

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CHAP. IV.]

CORRESPONDENCE WITH GENET.

151

Views substantially concurred in--Heads of President's Speech discussed-Randolph's Draft-Jefferson drafts Messages in regard to France and England-Discussion as to what shall be Publicly and what Privately transmitted to Congress Jefferson's Views prevail at all points--The only place where Jefferson speaks of Drafting Papers for the President-Reasons why we cannot know how far he made such Drafts-Tb Dishonor of preserving them as Proofs of Authorship-Opening of Congress-Ascendency of the Republicans Jefferson's Report on Privileges and Restrictions on our Foreign Commerce- The great Effect of this Paper-His last Letter to Genet-Washington again solicits him to defer his Resignation Jefferson sends his ResignationPresident's Reply-Jefferson's Return Home-His Public Standing when he retiredWebster's and Marshall's Testimony-Grounds of his Popularity–The Theory that he chose this time to retire, on account of his Popularity-Ana Records–Family Corres. pondence brought down.

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On the 22d of May, the French Minister addressed the Secretary of State,' asking that the United States Government anticipate the payment of the installments of its French debt, not yet due; and offering, in that case, to employ the money, and so much more as he could procure on his personal drafts payable at the French treasury, in purchasing provisions, naval stores, etc., in the United States.

On the 23d, he transmitted a decree of his Government, opening all its ports in Europe and America to the produce of the United States, and granting the citizens and vessels of the latter the same rights and favors with its own, throughout the French possessions.

On the 27th, he replied to the letter addressed to his predecessor by the Secretary of State, May 15th, announcing the decisions of the American Executive on the complaints made by the British Minister. Genet denied the facts set forth in some of those complaints, and he made the usual claim that the Treaty of 1778 authorized French and American armed vessels to put into each other's ports with prizes, without being subjected to interference, or to the adjudications of the civil courts on the validity of their prizes; and that this privilege was interdicted to the enemies of each power, while at war.

He declared that the privateers armed at Charleston belonged to French houses, and were commanded and armed by French citizens, or by Americans who not only acted in violation of no law, but under the implied sanction of the Governor of South Carolina. He had, however, he said, immediately ordered the restitution of the English vessel (the Grange) which was captured within the jurisdiction of the United States.

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For their entire correspondence, see American State Papers, vol. i.

152

CORRESPONDENCE WITH GENET.

[CHAP. IV

On the 1st of June, Genet complained that two officers had been arrested on board a French privateer,' as American citiyens, and he called upon the intervention of the Executive to obtain their immediate release.

The Secretary of State replied, the same day, that the arrested officers were in the custody of the civil magistrates "over whose proceedings the Executive had no control”-that they would be tried by a jury of their countrymen, " in the presence of judges of learning and integrity”-and if they had not violated the laws of the land, that the case would isstie accordingly.

On the 5th the Secretary of State replied to Genet's letter of 27th of May, and also to some intermediate verbal communications. He stated that the President had, at the request of the Minister, reëxamined his positions in respect to the nentrality laws, and adhered to the opinions already announced. Ile repeated the intimation that the French vessels illegally equipped and commissioned at Charleston must leave the ports of the United States.

Genet responded with warmth (on the 8th), that as long as the States assembled in Congress should not have determined that their “solenn engagement should not be performed," no one had a right thus to interfere; and he not obscurely hinted that the people of America" viewed the subject in a very different light from their Executive.

On the 11th, the Secretary notified the French Minister that his request for the prepayment of the French debt was declined, from the inability of the Government to raise the necessary sulms without too seriously hazarding the state of its credit. Hamilton had officially advised the President to deny the application without giving any reasons.' Jefferson had urged that such a course “ would have a very dry and unpleasant aspect.” and his proposal to couch a refusal (which the entire Cabinet then present considered necessary under the circumstances) in a respectful form, received the approbation of the President.

These were the persons ordered arrested by the Government, as stated in the letter to Mr. Hammond of May 15th.

? The case issued some months afterwards in the acquittal of the prisoners.

: For both Hamilton's and Jefferson's letters on the subject, see Hamilton's Works, yol. iv. pp. 414-421. Hamilton's proposal to refuse without reasons, was made June 5th, before the Government had received an offensive word from Genet.

Jefferson, however, thought that if the installments falling due in this year (1793;

CHAP. IV.]

CORRESPONDENCE WITH GENET.

153

Genot took no pains to conceal how much his feelings were hurt by this refusal. In a letter of the 14th, he spoke of the deficiency in the produce of France, its immense armaments, and the prospect that both it and its colonies “would be consigned to the horrors of tamine, if the United States should not furnish them, on account of their debt, a part of the subsistence which they wanted.” He said that * without entering into the financial reasons which operated this refusal, without endeavoring to prove that it tended to accomplish the infernal system of the King of England, and of other kings his accomplices to destroy by famine the French republicans and liberty, he attended, on the present occasion, only to the calls of his country, and as its necessities and those of the colonies became daily more pressing—as it had charged him to provide for them at whatever price it might be "-he desired the Secretary of State to inform the President that he was anthorized to give assignments of the French debt against the United States in payment for provisions, and that he requested that the amount of the debt be adjusted at the Treasury for that purpose. He concluded by saying, that “the expedient to which he was about to liave recourse would probably be onerous to the French nation; but as the federal Government thought it might take on itself to place us the French Minister or nation) under the necessity of employing it, withont consulting Congress upon so important a matter, he was obliged to follow his instructions."

Ile the same day (14th), in another letter, complained to the Government that in contempt of the treaties which united the French and Americans," that in contempt of the law of nations," civil and judiciary officers of the United States had taken it upon themselves at Philadelphia to stop the sale of prizes taken by an armed French galliot, and at New York had opposed the sailing of a French vessel comunissioned by the Government of France. He said that he had given proofs of his respect for the American Government by ordering the restitution of the Grange, and " he should in all his conduct slow an equal deference ;" but " at the same time he shonld expect” from it “all the snpport which he at present stood in need of, to defend in the

could be advanced without incurring more dangers, he should be for doing it.” “He thought it very material to keep alive the friendly sentiments of that country (France As far as could be done without risking war or double payments.' (Jefferson to Wash ington, June 6th.)

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