2. JA's letter to the President of Congress, 5 Feb. 1783, was a protest over the unexplained revocation in July 1781 of JA's commission to negotiate a treaty of commerce with Great Britain, together with a strong plea for the appointment
of an American minister to London in order to perform this and other tasks (LbC
, Adams Papers
; Wharton, ed., Dipl. Corr. Amer. Rev.
, 6:242–247). On 1 May a committee of Congress of which Alexander Hamilton was chairman brought in a report on JA's letter which led to the foregoing vote (
, 24:320–321). For James Madison's sarcastic observations on JA's letter see his letter to Jefferson, 6 May (Jefferson, Papers, ed. Boyd
, 6:265). Secretary Livingston resigned early in June before carrying out Congress' order of 1 May; new instructions were not agreed upon until 29 Oct., and then in terms that omitted Great Britain (
, 25:753–757). No commissions were issued under this order, and the new arrangement of the United States foreign service was not settled until the following May; see note 1
on JA's Diary entry of 22 June 1784, below.