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John Adams to J. B. Pike

11 May 1786

Sir— London May 11th. 1786.—

I have received the Letter you did me, the honor to write me on the 8th of this month.

There is a Governor in each of the States of America by their New Constitutions, to whom every thing should be addressed, which it was proper before the revolution to address to a Governor under the Crown of Great Britain— —

But a Governor never had Authority to dispose of private Property, or to give or recover a title or Possession of an Estate, Recourse must be had to the Laws and the only proper method in your Case is to apply to some Lawyer in North Carolina, who can give every Information, and take every step, that may be necessary

A Lawyer will be able to inform you whether the estate has been confiscated or not, & whether a recovery by the right Heir in England is probable—I am not informed of these things If the British Court had a public Minister residing near Congress and Consuls in the several States or Vice Consuls as other Nations have, Information and advice from such officers might be had,—But this is not within my Department—His Excellency Richa\r/d Caswell Esqr. is at present Governor of the State of North Carolina— —

I am Sir &c

J. A—

LbC (MHi: Adams Papers).
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