. For Jonathan Loring Austin's appointment to negotiate a loan and purchase supplies
in Europe, see the Mass. Council's letter of 13 Jan.
and Francis Dana, and notes
(vol. 8:308–309). That letter requested, as a precaution rather than the result of
a resolve of the General Court, that
and Francis Dana act in Austin's place if he was unable to execute his commission
, 21:348–349). The present letter from the committee appointed to over see Austin's
mission stemmed from the General Court's resolves of 22 June, ordering Capt. Samson
to prepare the Mars
for a European voyage and specifically requesting
and Dana to act because of fears that Austin had not reached Europe (same, p. 573).
and Dana never exercised the powers given them by this letter because Austin reached
Paris in early May (to Jonathan Williams, 14 May, note 3
). The Adams Papers
has a manuscript copy of a letter dated 22 July from Austin to Vergennes in which
Austin proposed that Massachusetts supply the French navy with masts in exchange for
money and clothing. For the result of this appeal, which was apparently referred to
Gabriel de Sartine, see Francis Dana's letter of 1 Aug.
, note 3
(below). Austin's instructions and the “schedules” enclosed with the Council's letter
of 13 Jan. have not been found, but for the instructions, see Mass., Province Laws