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The Jeffersonian cyclopedia;

a comprehensive collection of the views of Thomas Jefferson classified and arranged in alphabetical order under nine thousand titles relating to government, politics, law, education, political economy, finance, science, art, literature, religious freedom, morals, etc.;

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7707. SAN DOMINGO, Supplies to.—
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7707. SAN DOMINGO, Supplies to.—

When the distresses in St. Domingo first broke
forth, we thought we could not better evidence
our friendship to that, and to the Mother
country also, than to step into its relief, on
your application, without waiting a formal au
thorization from the National Assembly. As
the case was unforeseen, so it was unprovided
for on their part, and we did what we doubted
not they would have desired us to do, had there
been time to make the application, and what
we presumed they would sanction as soon as
known to them. We have now been going on
more than a twelve-month, in making advances
for the relief of the Colony, without having, as
yet, received any such sanction; for the decree
of four millions of livres in aid of the Colony,
besides the circuitous and informal manner by
which we became acquainted with it, describes
and applies to operations very different from
those which have actually taken place. The
wants of the Colony appear likely to continue,
and their reliance on our supplies to become
habitual. We feel every disposition to continue
our efforts for administering to those wants;
but that cautious attention to forms which
would have been unfriendly in the first moment,
becomes a duty to ourselves; when the
business assumes the appearance of long continuance,
and respectful also to the National
Assembly itself, who have a right to prescribe
the line of an interference so materially interesting
to the Mother country and the Colony.
By the estimate you were pleased to deliver
me, we perceive that there will be wanting, to
carry the Colony through the month of December,
between thirty and forty thousand dollars,
in addition to the sums before engaged
to you. I am authorized to inform you, that
the sum of forty thousand dollars shall be paid
to your orders at the Treasury of the United
States, and to assure you, that we feel no abatement
in our dispositions to contribute these aids
from time to time, as they shall be wanting,
for the necessary subsistence of the Colony;
but the want of express approbation from the
National Legislature, must ere long produce a
presumption that they contemplate perhaps
other modes of relieving the Colony and dictate
to us the propriety of doing only what they
shall have regularly and previously sanctioned.—
To Jean Baptiste Ternant. Washington ed. iii, 491. Ford ed., vi, 136.
(Pa., Nov. 1792)