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John Adams to Thomas Jefferson

24 Jul. 1785

Dear Sir. Grosvenor Square July 24th. 1785—

I have a Letter from the Baron De Thulemeier of the 19th, and a Copy of his Letter to you of the same date. I hope now in a few Day’s to take Mr. Short by the hand in Grosvenor Square, and to put my hand to the [Tr]eaty. I think no time should be lost. We will join Mr. Dumas with Mr. Short in the Exchange if you please.

I applyed as you desire, and obtained the interposition of the Lords Commissioners of the treasury, and the Commissioners of the Customs for the transhipping of Dr. Franklin’s Baggage. We have heared of the Doctors arrival at Rouen, but no further.

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There is a Bill before Parliament to prevent smuggling Tobacco, in which restrictions are very rigorous, but cannot be effected. two thirds of the Tobacco consumed in this Kingdom I am told is smuggled—how can it be otherwise when the impost is five times the original Value of the Commodity. If a pound in five escapes nothing is lost. if two in five, a great profit is made.

The Duty is 16d. pr. pound and tobacco sells for three pence. —Yet all applications for lowering the Duty are rejected— —

Yours most affectionately

John Adams

Thomas Jefferson’s Deciphered Version

the British alliense duty is a very burthensome thing and they may carry it hereafter as far upon tobacco rice indies & twenty other things as they do now upon oil. to obviate this I think of substituting the words natural born citizens of the U.S.and natural born subjects of G.B. in stead of the most favored nation you remember we first proposed to offer this to all nations, but upon my objecting that the English would make their ships French or sweadote or Dutch Etc. to avail themselves of it without agreeing to it on their part we alltered it to the foot ing of gentis amicissimi. but if the English will now agree to it we shall secure ourselves against many odious duties and no ill consequence can arise. it is time the French Dutch Sweden and Prussia will of course claim the advantage but as they must inreturn allow us the same advantage so much the better. let me know if any objection occurs to you

(DLC: Jefferson Papers).
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