. This is an example of the oath required by the Commissioners of those going to America
or entering its service. Amiel's oath and appointment as captain of the sloop Alliance
was the result of a scheme proposed by Poreau, Mackenzie & Cie. of Dunkirk to outfit
a privateer at that port. According to a letter from the company of 7 July
(below), this proposal was presented and approved during conversations between the
Commissioners and a member of the firm visiting Passy; thus little is known of it
except what can be inferred from the letter noted above and those to the Commissioners
from Francis Coffyn of 7
July (both below). The Commissioners, having been authorized to select the captain,
chose Peter Amiel, formerly of Boston and captain of the merchant ship Ranger
, who was then in Paris and in contact with the Commissioners. On 22 June they issued
a bond for the Alliance
and on the 23d, in addition to administering the oath, sent Amiel the instructions
for commanders of privateers and ships of war adopted by the congress on 3 April 1776.
Amiel went to Dunkirk to assume command but, disappointed with the small size of the
, soon withdrew, and the project was terminated. Amiel later received a commission
as a lieutenant in the Continental Navy and served under John Paul Jones on the Bonhomme Richard
(Cal. Franklin Papers, A.P.S.
, 3:431; Gérard, Despatches and Instructions
, p. 440, note 2; JA, Diary and Autobiography
, see index under Amiel, Peter).