Saturday, April 14, 2012

April 16, 1783

On April 16, 1783, Congressman Oliver Ellsworth of Connecticut wrote to his wife, Abigail (Wolcott) Ellsworth, “The enclosed newspapers shows that they are much less satisfied with the Peace in Great Britain than we are & they have much less reason to be—after you have read it I wish you to send it with my compliments to Mr. Hinsdale to whom I know it will be highly amusing.” Congressman Ellsworth observed, “All our prisoners in the hands of the British are set at liberty—& an order yesterday passed in Congress to release all the British prisoners in our hands.”

Paul H. Smith, ed., Letters of Delegates to Congress, 1774-1789: Volume 20: March 12, 1783-September 30, 1783 (Washington, D. C.:  Government Printing Office, 1993), 190.

On November 30, 1782, British negotiator Richard Oswald and Americans John Adams, Benjamin Franklin, John Jay and Henry Laurens signed the article of a preliminary peace.  The Treaty of Paris, signed September 3, 1783, officially ended the war.  The Pennsylvania Packet (Philadelphia) published the provisional agreement on April 10, 1783.

Treaty of Paris: Primary Documents of American History (Virtual Programs & Services, Library of Congress)
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