[Dieppe, France. July 1801]. p. printed circular letter on a folded folio sheet, the blank fourth page addressed in manuscript and postmarked at Boston, Oct. 23  and with a "Ship" cancel. Docketed on the fourth page as well. Old folds, some edge wear, small tears at edges of fold, fourth page torn from wax seal. Very good overall. Item #WRCAM44263
An interesting and rare artifact of the attempt to rebuild French-American trading relations in the wake of the so-called "Quasi-War" between the two nations. The Quasi-War was an undeclared conflict between the United States and France during John Adams' administration in the late 1790s, manifested mostly in naval engagements between the two nations. The war wreaked havoc on American commerce with France, which only began to be rebuilt with the Convention of 1800. The present printed circular was created by "Le Baron fils," the former American consular agent in Dieppe, and was apparently sent to a variety of American merchants, encouraging them to once again send shipments of American goods to that French port. Not much is known of Le Baron fils, though he did correspond with Benjamin Franklin, and he served as the American consular agent at Dieppe for several years. This copy of Le Baron fils' circular was sent to prominent New York merchant and politician Nicholas Low and is dated in manuscript July "24." It is addressed to Low in manuscript on the fourth page, and his name is also written in the upper left corner of the circular. In the printed text Le Baron fils states: "you may see by the inclosed Price Current of our Colonial & American goods [not present here] that our prices are more advantageous than in Bordeaux, as we are more in the center of the Republick, nearer to Paris, Rouen, Amiens and all the Chiefest manufacturing towns of France." Low is encouraged to "consign me some goods, the sale of which shall be attended to with the greatest care, and the proceeds of which will be sent to you either in goods from this country, or in Bills on Paris, London or Hamburgh at your choice." The printed text concludes by giving the names of the American consuls at Paris and Hamburg, as well as two English trading houses, as references to Le Baron fils' character. Le Baron fils adds, in manuscript: "Mr. J. Clason & Mr. C. Codwise of yr place can give you an account upon my house in case you want quick information."