The Treaty of Paris

In the Name of the most Holy & undivided Trinity.

It having pleased the Divine Providence to dispose the Hearts of
the most Serene and most Potent Prince George the Third, by the Grace of
God, King of Great Britain, France, and Ireland, Defender of the
Faith, Duke of Brunswick and Lunebourg, Arch- Treasurer and Prince
Elector of the Holy Roman Empire etc.. and of the United States of
America, to forget all past Misunderstandings and Differences that have
unhappily interrupted the good Correspondence and Friendship which
they mutually wish to restore; and to establish such a beneficial and
satisfactory Intercourse between the two countries upon the ground of
reciprocal Advantages and mutual Convenience as may promote and secure
to both perpetual Peace and Harmony; and having for this desirable End
already laid the Foundation of Peace & Reconciliation by the
Provisional Articles signed at Paris on the 30th of November 1782, by
the Commissioners empowered on each Part, which Articles were agreed to
be inserted in and constitute the Treaty of Peace proposed to be
concluded between the Crown of Great Britain and the said United
States, but which Treaty was not to be concluded until Terms of Peace
should be agreed upon between Great Britain & France, and his
Britannic Majesty should be ready to conclude such Treaty accordingly:
and the treaty between Great Britain & France having since been
concluded, his Britannic Majesty & the United States of America, in
Order to carry into full Effect the Provisional Articles above
mentioned, according to the Tenor thereof, have constituted &
appointed, that is to say his Britannic Majesty on his Part, David
Hartley, Esqr., Member of the Parliament of Great Britain, and the said
United States on their Part, – stop point – John Adams, Esqr., late a
Commissioner of the United States of America at the Court of
Versailles, late Delegate in Congress from the State of Massachusetts,
and Chief Justice of the said State, and Minister Plenipotentiary of
the said United States to their High Mightinesses the States General of
the United Netherlands; – stop point – Benjamin Franklin, Esqr., late
Delegate in Congress from the State of Pennsylvania, President of the
Convention of the said State, and Minister Plenipotentiary from the
United States of America at the Court of Versailles; John Jay, Esqr.,
late President of Congress and Chief Justice of the state of New York,
and Minister Plenipotentiary from the said United States at the Court
of Madrid; to be Plenipotentiaries for the concluding and signing the
Present Definitive Treaty; who after having reciprocally communicated
their respective full Powers have agreed upon and confirmed the
following Articles.

Article 1st:
His Brittanic Majesty acknowledges the said United States, viz., New
Hampshire, Massachusetts Bay, Rhode Island and Providence Plantations,
Connecticut, New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Delaware, Maryland,
Virginia, North Carolina, South Carolina and Georgia, to be free
sovereign and Independent States; that he treats with them as such, and
for himself his Heirs & Successors, relinquishes all claims to the
Government, Propriety, and Territorial Rights of the same and every
Part thereof.

Article 2d:
And that all Disputes which might arise in future on the subject of the
Boundaries of the said United States may be prevented, it is hereby
agreed and declared, that the following are and shall be their
Boundaries, viz.; from the Northwest Angle of Nova Scotia, viz., that
Angle which is formed by a Line drawn due North from the Source of St.
Croix River to the Highlands; along the said Highlands which divide
those Rivers that empty themselves into the river St. Lawrence, from
those which fall into the Atlantic Ocean, to the northwesternmost Head
of Connecticut River; Thence down along the middle of that River to the
forty-fifth Degree of North Latitude; From thence by a Line due West
on said Latitude until it strikes the River Iroquois or Cataraquy;
Thence along the middle of said River into Lake Ontario; through the
Middle of said Lake until it strikes the Communication by Water between
that Lake & Lake Erie; Thence along the middle of said
Communication into Lake Erie, through the middle of said Lake until it
arrives at the Water Communication between that lake & Lake Huron;
Thence along the middle of said Water Communication into the Lake
Huron, thence through the middle of said Lake to the Water Communication
between that Lake and Lake Superior; thence through Lake Superior
Northward of the Isles Royal & Phelipeaux to the Long Lake; Thence
through the middle of said Long Lake and the Water Communication
between it & the Lake of the Woods, to the said Lake of the Woods;
Thence through the said Lake to the most Northwestern Point thereof,
and from thence on a due West Course to the river Mississippi; Thence
by a Line to be drawn along the Middle of the said river Mississippi
until it shall intersect the Northernmost Part of the thirty-first
Degree of North Latitude, South, by a Line to be drawn due East from
the Determination of the Line last mentioned in the Latitude of
thirty-one Degrees of the Equator to the middle of the River
Apalachicola or Catahouche; Thence along the middle thereof to its
junction with the Flint River; Thence straight to the Head of Saint
Mary’s River, and thence down along the middle of Saint Mary’s River to
the Atlantic Ocean.  East, by a Line to be drawn along the Middle of
the river Saint Croix, from its Mouth in the Bay of Fundy to its Source,
and from its Source directly North to the aforesaid Highlands, which
divide the Rivers that fall into the Atlantic Ocean from those which
fall into the river Saint Lawrence; comprehending all Islands within
twenty Leagues of any Part of the Shores of the United States, and
lying between Lines to be drawn due East from the Points where the
aforesaid Boundaries between Nova Scotia on the one Part and East
Florida on the other shall, respectively, touch the Bay of Fundy and
the Atlantic Ocean, excepting such Islands as now are or heretofore have
been within the limits of the said Province of Nova Scotia.

Article 3d:
It is agreed that the People of the United States shall continue to
enjoy unmolested the Right to take Fish of every kind on the Grand Bank
and on all the other Banks of Newfoundland, also in the Gulf of Saint
Lawrence and at all other Places in the Sea, where the Inhabitants of
both Countries used at any time heretofore to fish. And also that the
Inhabitants of the United States shall have Liberty to take Fish of
every Kind on such Part of the Coast of Newfoundland as British
Fishermen shall use, (but not to dry or cure the same on that Island)
And also on the Coasts, Bays & Creeks of all other of his Brittanic
Majesty’s Dominions in America; and that the American Fishermen shall
have Liberty to dry and cure Fish in any of the unsettled Bays, Harbors,
and Creeks of Nova Scotia, Magdalen Islands, and Labrador, so long as
the same shall remain unsettled, but so soon as the same or either of
them shall be settled, it shall not be lawful for the said Fishermen to
dry or cure Fish at such Settlement without a previous Agreement for
that purpose with the Inhabitants, Proprietors, or Possessors of the
Ground.

Article 4th:

It is agreed that Creditors on either Side shall meet with no lawful
Impediment to the Recovery of the full Value in Sterling Money of all
bona fide Debts heretofore contracted.

Article 5th:
It is agreed that Congress shall earnestly recommend it to the
Legislatures of the respective States to provide for the Restitution of
all Estates, Rights, and Properties, which have been confiscated
belonging to real British Subjects; and also of the Estates, Rights,
and Properties of Persons resident in Districts in the Possession on
his Majesty’s Arms and who have not borne Arms against the said United
States. And that Persons of any other Description shall have free
Liberty to go to any Part or Parts of any of the thirteen United States
and therein to remain twelve Months unmolested in their Endeavors to
obtain the Restitution of such of their Estates – Rights &
Properties as may have been confiscated. And that Congress shall also
earnestly recommend to the several States a Reconsideration and
Revision of all Acts or Laws regarding the Premises, so as to render the
said Laws or Acts perfectly consistent not only with Justice and
Equity but with that Spirit of Conciliation which on the Return of the
Blessings of Peace should universally prevail. And that Congress shall
also earnestly recommend to the several States that the Estates,
Rights, and Properties of such last mentioned Persons shall be restored
to them, they refunding to any Persons who may be now in Possession
the Bona fide Price (where any has been given) which such Persons may
have paid on purchasing any of the said Lands, Rights, or Properties
since the Confiscation.

And it is agreed that all Persons who have any Interest in
confiscated Lands, either by Debts, Marriage Settlements, or otherwise,
shall meet with no lawful Impediment in the Prosecution of their just
Rights.

Article 6th:
That there shall be no future Confiscations made nor any Prosecutions
commenced against any Person or Persons for, or by Reason of the Part,
which he or they may have taken in the present War, and that no Person
shall on that Account suffer any future Loss or Damage, either in his
Person, Liberty, or Property; and that those who may be in Confinement
on such Charges at the Time of the Ratification of the Treaty in
America shall be immediately set at Liberty, and the Prosecutions so
commenced be discontinued.

Article 7th:
There shall be a firm and perpetual Peace between his Britanic Majesty
and the said States, and between the Subjects of the one and the
Citizens of the other, wherefore all Hostilities both by Sea and Land
shall from henceforth cease:  All prisoners on both Sides shall be set
at Liberty, and his Britanic Majesty shall with all convenient speed,
and without causing any Destruction, or carrying away any Negroes or
other Property of the American inhabitants, withdraw all his Armies,
Garrisons & Fleets from the said United States, and from every
Post, Place and Harbour within the same; leaving in all Fortifications,
the American Artillery that may be therein: And shall also Order &
cause all Archives, Records, Deeds & Papers belonging to any of
the said States, or their Citizens, which in the Course of the War may
have fallen into the hands of his Officers, to be forthwith restored and
delivered to the proper States and Persons to whom they belong.

Article 8th:
The Navigation of the river Mississippi, from its source to the Ocean,
shall forever remain free and open to the Subjects of Great Britain and
the Citizens of the United States.

Article 9th:
In case it should so happen that any Place or Territory belonging to
great Britain or to the United States should have been conquered by the
Arms of either from the other before the Arrival of the said
Provisional Articles in America, it is agreed that the same shall be
restored without Difficulty and without requiring any Compensation.

Article 10th:
The solemn Ratifications of the present Treaty expedited in good &
due Form shall be exchanged between the contracting Parties in the
Space of Six Months or sooner if possible to be computed from the Day
of the Signature of the present Treaty.  In witness whereof we the
undersigned their Ministers Plenipotentiary have in their Name and in
Virtue of our Full Powers, signed with our Hands the present Definitive
Treaty, and caused the Seals of our Arms to be affixed thereto.

Done at Paris, this third day of September in the year of our Lord, one thousand seven hundred and eighty-three.

D HARTLEY (SEAL)
JOHN ADAMS (SEAL)
B FRANKLIN (SEAL)
JOHN JAY (SEAL)

Leave a Reply