Papers of John Adams, volume 13

To John Jay

To Robert R. Livingston

To Henry Laurens, 18 August 1782 JA Laurens, Henry


To Henry Laurens, 18 August 1782 Adams, John Laurens, Henry
To Henry Laurens
The Hague Aug. 18. 1782 Dear sir

I have just received the inclosed Letter open for me to read. It appears to be from one, who had a remarkable kind of Benevolence towards the U. S. Such as has memorably appeared through the whole War, in almost all Countries, I mean the benign Inclination to be American Agents Jobbers, Officers, Ambassadors, Generals 243and Kings.1 Inclosed is a Copy of Fitzherberts Commission. Pray inclose it to Congress that it may go as many Ways as possible. What think you of the Words “Quorum cunque Statuum quorum interesse poterit?”2 If We should presume to think ourselves included in these Words, will Ld shelburne be of the same Mind?

The States General have appointed Mr Brantzen, their Minister who did me the favour to dine with me 3 days ago and then told me he should set off, for Paris in 3 Weeks. Blessed are the Peace makers. Dont you wish yourself one?

LbC (Adams Papers); addressed: “His Exy. Pres. Laurens chez Madame Babut et Labouctiere a Nantes.”


This is Rodolph Valltravers' letter of 11 April written from Munich (Adams Papers). There Valltravers, a Swiss who declared his veneration for JA and support for the American cause, sought an appointment from JA to serve the interests of the United States in Europe. He enclosed a duplicate of his letter of 24 March to Henry Laurens (ScL [ScU]) in the Tower of London, which might not have been received, but see Laurens' reply of 27 Aug., below. Valltravers wrote to Henry Laurens on 25 Sept. (ScL [ScU]) that JA had replied to his letter with one of 18 Aug. (not found). There JA had promised to forward the enclosed letter to Laurens and indicated that Laurens was not on parole and thus, in Valltravers' mind, free to act on the proposal contained in his letter.


With those of all states whom it may concern. For a discussion of the significance of this phrase from Fitzherbert's comission, see JA's 18 Aug. letter to Robert R. Livingston, and notes 2 and 3, below. The final quotation marks are supplied.