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James Monroe's Letters to Timothy Pickering

About the Letter

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In this January 26, 1796 letter, Monroe seeks answers regarding his authority within the indemnity cases of American citizens in France. Monroe also seeks advice regarding his task of appointing the American consuls for France. Monroe comments extensively on France’s multiple military campaigns. With regard to England, Monroe reports that unless France can regain possession of the Belgie, a peace with England is unlikely. Furthermore, Monroe reports that England has continued to help finance Austria’s war against France. In France’s campaign against Austria, Monroe reports that the two countries will begin negotiations, but expresses his doubt that a peace will promptly occur. He emphasizes that peace will be more likely if England agrees to restore the possessions taken from France and Holland. Monroe expresses surprise over the fact that although the French government forced the Italian Minister Count Carletti from Paris, the Grand Duke of Italy posted no opposition and even expressed respect for the new French government. Finally, Monroe reports that the new government has continued its effort to maintain peace with French society, who seems to be in favor of the structure of the post-revolution government.