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. Enclosure not found. On 4 Dec., Congress adopted an ordinance, to come into force
on 1 Feb. 1782, that established “what captures on water shall be lawful” and revoked
all previous regulations on the subject. With regard to neutral trade, it brought
American maritime practice into accordance with the provisions of the armed neutrality
and the Franco-American commercial treaty by establishing the rule that free ships
made free goods, except in the case of contraband or ships going to a blockaded port.
It also provided that from 1 March 1782 all British merchandise, with very limited
exceptions, would be “liable to capture and condemnation” if found within three miles
of the coast (same
Cite web page as: Founding Families: Digital Editions of the Papers of the Winthrops and the Adamses, ed.C. James Taylor. Boston: Massachusetts Historical Society, 2014.