Show image list »
Rare issue with the complete text of the treaties with France...
Item # 634819
December 10, 1778
THE INDEPENDENT CHRONICLE & UNIVERSAL ADVERTISER, Boston, December 10, 1778
* Treaties of Alliance with France
* American Revolutionary War
This is a particularly noteworthy issue as it may well be the very first American newspaper we have seen which prints the complete text of the "Treaties of Amity and Commerce, and of Alliance, Eventual and Defensive, between His Most Christian Majesty, and the Thirteen United States of America." This was the historic treaty which caused France to aid the American cause in the Revolutionary War. There are actually two treaties, one of military alliance, and the other of amity & commerce. Because of their lengthy, the entirety of pages 2, 3 and most of page 4 are taken up with the text of both, signed at the conclusion of each by C. A. Gerard, B. Franklin, Silas Deane, and Arthur Lee. Also included is the "preamble" which is signed by the French King: Louis. At the conclusion of the lengthy documents is the text of the: "...passports & letters which are to be given to the ships & barques according too the 27th article of this treaty."
The printer makes a special note: "In order to furnish our readers with a compleat copy of the treaties of France and the United States of America, without the expence of a pamphlet, we are obliged to omit many articles of intelligence, advertisements, etc." As was more typical in such situations with documents of particular length, a pamphlet would have been printed containing the complete text. This printer chose to sacrifice space for news and advertisements to include the full treaty texts in this regular issue.
The front page, however, does contain some war-related news (see), as well as two pr0clamations for a day of public thanksgiving and praise.
Complete in four pages, this issue has been professionally restored with replacement of archival paper where once were weak spots of minor loss caused by rubbing at folds (see). Such restoration is quite expensive but the content warrants.