Front Page Titles (by Subject) PHILIP V. B. LIVINGSTON TO JAY. - The Correspondence and Public Papers of John Jay, vol. 3 (1782-1793)
The Online Library of Liberty
A project of Liberty Fund, Inc.
Search this Title:
PHILIP V. B. LIVINGSTON TO JAY. - John Jay, The Correspondence and Public Papers of John Jay, vol. 3 (1782-1793) 
The Correspondence and Public Papers of John Jay, ed. Henry P. Johnston, A.M. (New York: G.P. Putnam’s Sons, 1890-93). Vol. 3 (1782-1793).
About Liberty Fund:
The text is in the public domain.
Fair use statement:
PHILIP V. B. LIVINGSTON TO JAY.
Nice, 22d February, 1783.
My Dear Sir,
I most heartily congratulate you on the Preliminary Articles of a General Peace being signed, and I hope that the public concerns of your Country will not in future require so much of your attention and application to business as to be prejudicial to your health, which I am convinced was the case when I was at Paris, and that you will have sufficient leizure to make little excursions into the Country to take the advantage of air & exercise, and perfectly re-establish your own health and that of Mrs. Jay.
By the printed Articles of the Preliminaries I observe that Great Britain has stipulated with America for the free navigation of the River Mississippi, and I suppose both Britain and America have done the same with Spain; but our American territory which begins at the 31st. degree of North Latitude is so high up that River, that it will be almost impracticable for any Sea Vessels to get there against the strong Current of the Mississippi. If America could extend her line from the 31st. degree of lattitude to the Southward thro’ the middle of the River Mississippi to its confluence with the Bay of Mexico, and obtain from Spain a strip of Land if only 20 or 30 miles to the Eastward of the River, together with the Island of New Orleans, it would be an invaluable acquisition; but without such an extension or some landing place on the Island of Orleans upon the Banks of the River, (provided it was only two miles square for a port to establish a Custom House, and build Ware Houses upon) all our valuable possessions, if the States establish Settlements in that Western Country, will experience the greatest difficulties in receiving their Supplies and exporting their Commerce. I beg your pardon for mentioning what you are undoubtedly well acquainted with but I am so strong an advocate for that Country that I could not refrain from making this observation.
After I left you at Paris Mr. Curzon and myself determined to go first to Geneva, where we staid a few days, and then came thro Lyons, down to Marseilles, at which place I remained untill the beginning of this month, when I came here.— My purpose in coming has been fully answered with respect to the fine, temperate Climate which I have found to the Southward; but nevertheless I have not enjoyed so much health as I expected for it has been interrupted by frequent Colds, and these brought on some returns of an old complaint in my Stomach.
I am not determined whether I shall go on from hence farther into Italy, or whether I shall return in the spring to Paris, but I hope that I shall have the pleasure of meeting with you and Mrs. Jay in perfect health somewhere in the course of the Summer. Give my affectionate Love to her. I have taken the liberty to inclose a letter for my father which I shall be much obliged to you to forward by the first opportunity. I am with great regard & esteem
Your obliged and obedient Servt.