Jay Treaty (1794)
The Jay Treaty, also known as Jay's Treaty and the Treaty of London, was a diplomatic attempt to resolve festering differences and deteriorating conditions between the United States and Great Britain. The chief negotiator for the United States was John Jay. Signed on November 19, 1794, and ratified by the Senate on June 24, 1795, the treaty was highly unpopular with the American public. Although the Jay Treaty resolved very little, it did forestall a military confrontation with Great Britain, which eventually occurred in 1812, by which time the U.S. was on firmer footing.
Quick Facts About Jay Treaty
Negotiated between United States and Great Britain
Also known as Jay's Treaty and Treaty of London
Purpose of the negotiations was to remedy deteriorating conditions between the United States and Great Britain
Issues addressed were Britain's tardy evacuation of forts on the American frontier, Britain's impressment of American sailors, Britain's seizure of of naval and military supplies bound to enemy ports on neutral ships, and American navigation laws that were potentially damaging to Britain
Signed by representatives from both nations on November 19, 1794
Ratified by U.S. Senate in June 24, 1795
The treaty proved unpopular with the American public because it resolved very few of the issues between the two nations
The issues of wartime debts and the US-Canada boundary were sent to arbitration--one of the first major uses of arbitration in diplomatic history
Alexander Hamilton's behind-the-scenes interference may have undermined Jay's ability to negotiate a stronger treaty
Opposition to the treaty was led by Thomas Jefferson and James Madison
The treaty did have the effect of forestalling a military confrontation with Great Britain, which eventually occurred in 1812, by which time the U.S. was on firmer footing
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Portrait of John Jay by Gilbert Stuart.