Greetings from the Jay Papers! I apologize for my long absence, but we've been very, very busy. Volume 2 of the Selected Papers of John Jay was published by the University of Virginia Press in Spring of 2012. This exciting volume covers the years of the Spanish Mission (1779-1782), when Mr. Jay attempted to secure funds and other support from Spain. Unfortunately, he was frustrated in this, but his efforts make fascinating reading, as he tries to negotiate the archaic court rituals and complicated politics of the Spanish Court, the perpetual lack of money and credit of the Americans, and the intrigues of his chargé d'affaires William Carmichael, his brother-in-law Brockholst Livingston, and his spoiled charge Lewis Littlepage. In addition to his diplomatic duties, Jay had to cope with providing long-distance for his ailing, elderly parents, family deaths (including his infant daughter Susan), the interception of his official letters by the enemy and our allies, and bed-bugs and fleas. The volume also includes many sparkling letters from Sally Jay, who, along with his nephew Peter Jay Munro, accompanied her husband. Her presence, it must be said, was rather un-understood by the Spanish, who could not fathom a man being so in love with his wife. Over 100 code and code related documents are published in Volume 2, which gives a fascinating look into the world of diplomatic correspondence.
The publication of this volume has been funded by the National Historical Publications and Records Commission and Columbia University.
The University of Virginia page for the volume may be found here.
Watch out for Volume 3 of the Selected Papers of John Jay this spring!