Front Page Titles (by Subject) JAY TO GENERAL WASHINGTON. - The Correspondence and Public Papers of John Jay, vol. 1 (1763-1781)
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JAY TO GENERAL WASHINGTON. - John Jay, The Correspondence and Public Papers of John Jay, vol. 1 (1763-1781) 
The Correspondence and Public Papers of John Jay, ed. Henry P. Johnston, A.M. (New York: G.P. Putnam’s Sons, 1890-93). Vol. 1 (1763-1781).
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JAY TO GENERAL WASHINGTON.
Philadelphia, 26th April, 1779.
The questions contained in your favour of the ——— April instant are as important as the manner of introducing them is delicate.
While the maritime affairs of the continent continue under the direction of a committee, they will be exposed to all the consequences of want of system, attention, and knowledge. The marine committee consists of a delegate from each State; it fluctuates; new members constantly coming in, and old ones going out; three or four, indeed, have remained in it from the beginning; and few members understand even the state of our naval affairs, or have time or inclination to attend to them. But why is not this system changed? It is, in my opinion, convenient to the family compact. The commercial committee was equally useless. A proposition was made to appoint a commercial agent for the States under certain regulations. Opposition was made. The ostensible objections were various. The true reason was its interfering with a certain commercial agent in Europe and his connections.
You will, if I am not greatly mistaken, find Mr. Gerard disposed to be open and communicative. He has acquired an extensive knowledge of our affairs; I have no reason to believe he will use it to our prejudice. There is as much intrigue in this State-house as in the Vatican, but as little secrecy as in a boarding-school. It mortifies me on this occasion to reflect that the rules of Congress on the subject of secrecy, which are far too general, and perhaps for that reason more frequently violated, restrains me from saying twenty things to you which have ceased to be private.
The state of our currency is really serious. When or by what means the progress of the depreciation will be prevented, is uncertain. The subject is delicate, but the conduct of some men really indicates at least great indifference about it. It will not be many days before measures having a great, though not immediate influence on this subject, will be either adopted or rejected. I shall then have an opportunity of being more particular.
I am, my dear sir,