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Diplomatic relations with France

Sources & Images
Source Name Image(s)
CollectionClements Library: James McHenry Papers view image
Document Information
Date June 18, 1796
Author Name James McHenry (primary) Location: War Office
Recipient Name Peter Hoffman (primary)
Summary Several months after the Jay Treaty, McHenry insists that the United States still highly values neutrality. If the treaty bothers France and triggers hostilities, McHenry argues, it is not the United States that is to blame.
Document Format Autograph Letter Signed
Document Notes [not available]
Content Notes [not available]
Related Persons/Groups Peter Hoffman; James McHenry; Executive; French; ;
Related Places War Office; France; ;
Keywords Treaties; ;
Key Phrases [not available]

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War office 18 June 1796
Dear Sir
In reply to your letter of the 14th, I can only say: that our government (as far as the Executive is concerned) will adhere most faithfully and religiously to its treaties, wth all foreign nations; - that it views neutrality now as it has heretofore as a great national blessing, which it ought to endeavour to preserve by all lawful and prudent means in its power: - that if any circumstances, which the government could not controul, may have excited France to any improper conduct, it is not the Executive of the United States that is to be blamed. Above all, I hope and believe France to be too wise and politic to give into any decisive steps (unless instigated thereto by our own people) which might produce ill will, or what is worse, hostilities between the two nations.
My family are well, and I am always and very sincerely yours
James McHenry
Peter Hoffman Eqr