Front Page Titles (by Subject) JAY TO THOMAS JEFFERSON. - 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:
JAY TO THOMAS JEFFERSON. - 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:
Liberty Fund, Inc. is a private, educational foundation established to encourage the study of the ideal of a society of free and responsible individuals.
The text is in the public domain.
Fair use statement:
This material is put online to further the educational goals of Liberty Fund, Inc. Unless otherwise stated in the Copyright Information section above, this material may be used freely for educational and academic purposes. It may not be used in any way for profit.
JAY TO THOMAS JEFFERSON.
New York, 24th April, 1788.
Since the 3d November last I have been honoured with your favours of the 19th, 22d, and 24th September, 8th and 27th October, 3d and 7th November, 21st and 31st December, and 5th February last, all of which have been laid before Congress; but they have given me no orders respecting the subjects of them.
The state of my health was for a long time such as to oblige me to omit some good opportunities of writing to you fully. It is not yet perfectly re-established but I am nevertheless so far recovered as to have reason to hope that the approaching season will moderate, if not wholly remove any remaining complaints. Since the rising of the late convention at Philadelphia Congress has done but little business, and I apprehend that will continue to be the case while the fate of the proposed Constitution remains undecided. You will perceive from the public papers that it has given occasion to heats and parties in several of the States.
The late commercial arrangements of France relative to the United States will tend to render the connection between the two countries more intimate. They bear marks of wisdom and liberality and cannot fail of being very acceptable. It is to be regretted that the mercantile people in France oppose a system which certainly is calculated to bind the two nations together, and from which both would eventually derive commercial as well as political advantages. It appears to me that France has not a single ally in Europe on which she can fully depend, and it doubtless would be wise in her to endeavour so to blend her interests with ours as if possible to render them indissoluble. This in my opinion can only be done by giving us all the privileges of Frenchmen, and accepting in return all the privileges of Americans. If they could bring themselves to adopt this idea, their schemes of policy respecting us would be greatly simplified. But the spirit of monopoly and exclusion has prevailed in Europe too long to be done away with at once, and however enlightened the present age may appear when compared with former ones, yet whenever ancient prejudices are touched we find that we only have light enough to see our want of more. Toleration in commerce like toleration in religion gains ground, it is true; but I am not sanguine in my expectations that either will soon take place in their due extent.
I have the honour to be with great respect and esteem, dear sir,
Your most obedient and very humble servant,