Lot #314

This lot has closed

Estimate: $1000+


Rare DS in French, signed “Napole,” one page, 13.25 x 19.25, December 5, 1811. Document providing safe passage for an American ship through Napoleon’s continental blockade. The American ship [left blank] is allowed to enter the ports of Marseille, Bordeaux, La Rochelle, and Nantes under the guarantee of a reputable and loyal French Company (Silleau). The American ship may bring rice from the Carolinas and to leave with French goods and is not to be molested by French war ships or privateers. Also signed by Napoleon’s Ministers of State (Pierre-Antoine, Count Daru), Marine and Colonies (Admiral & Duke Denis Decres), Interior (Jean-Pierre, Count of Montalivet), and Industries and Commerce (Jean-Baptiste, Collin de Sussy). In very good condition, with scattered staining, and a repaired split to the intersecting folds.

Unable to defeat the British Navy at sea, Napoleon tried to strangle Britain’s economy by imposing a continental embargo on British goods. This document was signed during the brief period when the U.S. and France had an uneasy neutrality agreement permitting their countries ships to bring specified goods into specified ports without fear of seizure or destruction. The name of the prospective American ship is blank, reflecting the reality that U.S. and French laws made such commercial cooperation difficult. Only a handful of these rare documents have ever reached the market, and virtually all of them have the name of the ship left blank.

Auction Info

  • Auction Title: Fine Autograph and Artifacts
  • Dates: #600 - Ended January 13, 2021

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