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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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7954. SLAVES, British seizure of.—
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7954. SLAVES, British seizure of.—

British army, after ravaging the State of Virginia,
had sent off a very great number of
slaves to New York. By the seventh article
of the treaty of peace, they stipulated not to
carry away any of these. Notwithstanding
this, it was known, when they were evacuating
New York, that they were carrying away the
slaves, General Washington made an official
demand of Sir Guy Carleton, that he should
cease to send them away. He answered, that
these people had come to them under promise
of the King's protection, and that that promise
should be fulfilled in preference to the stipulation
in the treaty. The State of Virginia, to
which nearly the whole of these slaves belonged,
passed a law to forbid the recovery of
debts due to British subjects. They declared,
at the same time, they would repeal the law,
if Congress were of opinion they ought to do it.
But, desirous that their citizens should be discharging
their debts, they afterwards permitted
British creditors to prosecute their suits, and
to receive their debts in seven equal and annual
payments; relying that the demand for
the slaves would be either admitted or denied
in time to lay their hands on some of the latter
payments for reimbursement. [458]
Report to Congress. Washington ed. ix, 240. Ford ed., iv, 127.
(P. 1785)


The extract is from a report to Congress of a
conference with Count de Vergennes, Foreign Minister
of France, on the subject of commerce.—Editor.