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Mr. Jay to conclude a treaty with not a member of the convention, him, on these disputed questions. which formed that instrument, from The negotiation continued, without an impression, that so prominent coming to any satisfactory result, an officer, under the then existing until the organization of the federal government, should not participate government. It would have been in its public deliberations. He easy to have concluded a commer. was, however, present at Annapolis, cial treaty between the two coun. and afforded to its members essen. tries, on terms very advantageous tial aid, by his advice, in establishto the United States; but these ing its provisions. concessions, on the part of Spain He afterwards, with Hamilton would have required concessions and Madison, wrote those cele. on our part, respecting boundaries, brated essays, under the signature and the navigation of the Missis. of the Federalist, which so power. sippi, which it was not deemed ad. fully contributed to its adoption visable to make. Mr. Jay was in. by the several states, while by the clined, after ineffectually trying contemporaneous exposition, which for more favourable terms, to the they furnish of its meaning and insertion of an article, forbearing true construction, as signal a benethe use of the Mississippi, within fit is conferred upon the present and the Spanish territory, for the space future generations. of 20 years, and in this view, he He was also chosen a member was sustained by the delegations of the convention of the state of from the eastern and middle states, New York, to decide upon the except that from Delaware, which adoption of the constitution, and was absent, and that from Mary. efficiently contributed, by his cha. land, which, with the four southern racter and influence, to the decis states, warmly opposed it. The sion it ultimately formed. policy of this course, however, he Shortly after the organization of was afterwards inclined to doubt, the federal government, on the and he was always of opinion, that 26th of September, 1789, Mr. Jay the United States possessed a per- was appointed chief justice of the fect right to the navigation, which supreme court of the United States, they ought never to surrender. an office for which he was pecu.
The whole question, however, liarly qualified by education, politi. was finally referred, on the 16th cal experience, in the stations he September, 1788, to the federal had previously filled, and above all, government, and continued to be, by that purity of feeling, and fear. more or less a subject of discussion, less and conscientious oberlience to until the purchase of Louisiana. principle, which distinguished him
Mr. Jay, while acting in this im. throughout life. portant post, became fully sensible While holding the offic" of chief of the weakness and imperfections justice, Mr. Jay was nominated, in of the government, under the arti. 1792, by the federal party in New. cles of confederation, and conse. York as a candidate for the office quently warmly advocated all the of governor, in opposition to George preliminary measures, which led Clinton, who was upheld by the to the formation and adoption of anti-federalists of that day. In the the federal constitution. He was election which ensued, Mr. Jay ob. tained a majority of the votes, but highly excite the popular feeling. the canvassers burnt the votes of would necessarily be followed by a the counties of Otsego, Tioga, and war. In either alternative, the of. Clinton, in which Mr. Jay had a fice was undesirable, but, yielding majority, on account of some al. to the emergency of the times, he ledged informality in the returns, departed on his mission. and Mr. Clinton was declared to On his arrival in England, be be elected. The votes of Otsego found the British cabinet inflated indicated a large majority in favour with the uninterrupted but deceit. of Mr. Jay, and under the law as it ful success, which attended her first then stood, the ballot boxes them. movements against the revolutionselves, were returned to the secre. ary government of France. Lord tary of state. The sheriff of Otse. Howe had just achieved a signal go had held over, having been ori. victory over her enemy. ginally appointed for four years, Landreci had fallen, and the and no successor had been cho. British army in the Netherlands sen. The canvassers held, that he had not yet met with those reverses was not legally a sheriff, and on which finally compelled it to eva. that ground ordered, by a party vote, cuate the Low Countries. Nothing, the ballots of that, together with therefore, was to be expected two other counties, where the re. through the collateral influence of turns were somewhat informal, to the European relations of England. be burnt. The official returns, as The negotiation was to be conduct, declared by the commissioners, ed simply upon American grounds. were for
Mr. Jay, however, did not despair, George Clinton, 8440 but carnestly devoted himself to • John Jay,
8332 the business of his mission. This high-handed measure just. Such was the effect of his sin. iy excited the indignation of all who cerity, joined with a mild but firm were not governed by party feel. tempe, and a thorough knowledge ing; and at the next election, Mr. of the true interests of both powers, Clinton, who was in fault chiefly by that by the 19th of November of accepting the office under such cir. that year, all the subjects of con cumstances, was compelled to with. troversy were adjusted, and the dif. draw from the canvass, and Mr. ficulties between the two countries Jay was elected in 1795 over settled by the treaty of 1794. chief justice Robert Yates, by a The negotiation of this celebra. majority of 1589, receiving 18,481 ted treaty forms too large a portion freehold votes. At the time of his of the political history of that pe. election he was abroad, having riod, to be fully stated in this me. been appointed by Gen. Washing. moir. Some idea may be formed of ton, April 19th, 1794, minister its importance, from the fact, that it plenipotentiary to Great Britain. stipulated for the surrender of the
Mr. Jay accepted this appoint. North-western posts, procured our ment with great reluctance. It was vessels admission into the India very improbable that a treaty could possessions of Great Britain, placed be formed upon fair terms, and a the commerce between the two failure to adjust the difficulties, countries on the footing of reciprowhich had then so increased as to city, agreed upon a mode for the
amicable settlement of the nor- and Governor Jay adopted, in con. thern and eastern boundaries, pro. junction with the federal authori. vided security against the abuses ties and the state legislature, mea. of British privateers, and of the sures to fortify the city of New. petty admiralty courts, and obtain. York, and to arm and discipline the ed compensation for spoliations up. militia. on American commerce amounting The great interests of literature nearly to $10,000,000.
and agriculture were earnestly re. A violent clamour was excited commended to the legislature, and against it at home, by those who a revision was made of the statute wished to enlist the United States code, during his administration, on the side of the French republic; Chief Justice Kent, and Justice but Washington, with his usual sa. Radcliff, being the revisors. gacity, properly appreciated its ad. The intense political excitement vantage, and determined to sanc. which now prevailed, rendered his tion the treaty, which was ratified situation far from agreeable. While by the senate, with the exception of he was vehemently assailed by his the 12th article, relative to the democratic opponents, his innate West India trade. The influence sense of right prevented him from of the president carried the treaty entering upon a course of proscrip. through against a violent opposi. tion of them, and he began to long tion; and it is now generally con. for that retirement from which he ceded, that its provisions are more had been drawn only by the exi. advantageous to the United States, gency of the times. This wish he than any which have since been in. carried into effect in the summer serted in any treaty between the of 1801, when he retired to Bed. two countries.
ford, in Westchester county, never After concluding the treaty, Mr. again to participate in the honours Jay returned home, but did not or cares of public station. again take his seat on the bench of His character and conduct in re. the supreme court, having been tirement, are so beautifully drawn in chosen, during his absence, gover. an address to the Alumni of Colum. nor of the state of New York. Du bia College, delivered shortly after ring his administration of the state his death, that we cannot close this government, his course was distin. memoir more appropriately, than in guished by the same unbending the words of that classical writer. rectitude, which had characterized "As the character of Hamilton him throughout his public career, presents, in its soldier-like frankand in this station he co-operated ness and daring, a beautiful exam. with the federal government in ple of the spirit of chivalry, applied maintaining the dignity and charac. io the pursuits of the statesman, so ter of the country.
in that of Jay, pure and holy jus. In 1798 he was re-elected go. tice seemed to be embodied. Ile vernor, Robert R. Livingston being lived as onehis opponent. The vote stood,
Sent forth of the Omnipotent, to run John Jay, 16,012
The great career of justice. R. R. Livingston, 13,632 The country appeared now to be He was endowed above most men, on the eve of a war with France, with steadiness of purpose and
self.command. He had early and dignities, in the full vigour of sought out for himself, and firmly mind and body, and at an age established in his mind, the grand when, in most statesmen, the obtruths, religious, moral, or political, jects of ambition show as gor. which were to regulate his con. geously, and its aspirations are as duct; and they were all embodied stirring as ever. He looked upon in his daily life. Hence the admi- himself, as having fully discharged rable consistency of his character, his debt of service to his country; which was the more striking, as it and, satisfied with the ample share seemed to reconcile and unite ap. of gratitude which he had received, parently opposite qualities. That he retired with cheerful content, grave prudence, which, in common without ever once casting a reluc. men, would have swayed every ac. tant eye towards the power or dig. tion to the side of timid caution, nities he had left. For the last was in him combined with invinci. thirty years of his remaining life, ble energy. So too in his opinions. he was known to us only by the No man was more deeply pene. occasional appearance of his name, trated with the doctrines, or the or the employment of his pen, in sentiment of religion ; no man more the service of piety or philanthro. conscientiously exact in its obser- py. A halo of veneration seem. vances; whilst no man could look ed to encircle him, as one belong. with more jealousy on any inter. ing to another world, though yet mixture of the religious with the lingering amongst us. When, du. temporal authority ; no man more ring the last year, the tidings of dreaded, or watched with more vigi. his death came to us, they were re. lant caution, every invasion, how. ceived through the nation, not with ever slight, upon the rights of pri sorrow or mourning, but with so. vate conscience.
lemn awe; like that with which we After a long and uninterrupted read the mysterious passage of an. series of the highest civil employ. cient scripture—“And Enoch walkments, in the most difficult times, ed with God, and he was not, for he suddenly retired from their toils God took him."
FIRST FOUR VOLUMES
AMERICAN ANNUAL REGISTER:
Comprehending from 4th March, 1825, to 4th March, 1829.
Relating to Arkansas Territory, iv. 346.
Relating to an arsenal at Mobile, iv. 347.
To explore the country west of the Mis-
327. 347. 350. 351. 352. 354. 356. 357. Relating to appointment of surveyor, iv.
335. 339. 344. 345. 347, 351. 353. 356. sels, iv. 358.
Relating to Valley Creek academyiv. 358.
Private acts, iv. 323 to 359.
Adams, John Quincy, inaugurated presi-
His message, ii. 30. iii. 85. iii. 101.
12. Retirement, iii. 34.
gainst, ii. 23. Defeat of, iii. 31.
Africa. Arabs in, i. 293. Slave trade i.
294. Asbantee wars, i. 296. Sir Charles
M'Carthy killed. i. 297.
at Mobile, ii. 493. Population, iii. 145.
and character, i. 253.
with Martinique and Guadaloupe, iv. Algiers. War with Spain, i. 297.
Appropriations. For fortifications, i. 135.
i. 139. Naval 'service, i. 140. ii. 140,
Army promotions, i. 364. ii. 503. jii. 558.
puree, i. 282. Doodpatlee, i. 282. Ex-
tions there, i. 284. Donabew and Ara-
Bhurtpore, i. 291.