John Adams

Message to the Senate on the Nomination of Envoys to France

February 25, 1799

Gentlemen of the Senate:

The proposition of a fresh negotiation with France, in consequence of advances made by the French government, has excited so general an attention, and so much conversation, as to have given occasion to many manifestations of the public opinion; from which it appears tome, that a new modification of the embassy will give more general satisfaction to the legislature, and to the nation, and perhaps better answer the purposes we have in view.

It is upon this supposition, and with this expectation, that I now nominate

Oliver Ellsworth, Esq., Chief Justice of the United States;

Patrick Henry, Esq., late Governor of Virginia; and

William Vans Murray, Esq., our Minister resident at the Hague; to be Envoys Extraordinary and Ministers Plenipotentiary to the French Republic, with full powers to discuss and settle, by a treaty, all controversies between the United States and France.

It is not intended that the two former of these gentlemen shall embark for Europe, until they shall have received from the Executive Directory, assurances, signified by their Secretary of Foreign Relations, that they shah be received in character; that they shall enjoy all the prerogatives attached to that character by the law of nations; and that a Minister or Ministers, of equal powers, shall be appointed anti commissioned to treat with them.


February 25th, 1799.

John Adams, Message to the Senate on the Nomination of Envoys to France Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project

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