On this day in history in 1782, peace talks between British and American diplomats got underway in Paris earlier in May 1782 and continued into the fall. In September, the American negotiators (John Jay, John Adams, and Benjamin Franklin) discovered that the French foreign minister had sent his secretary on a secret trip to London. Now convinced of French duplicity, Jay, Adams, and Franklin let the British know that they were willing to negotiate unilaterally–that is, without French interference.
After two months of difficult negotiations, the British and American diplomats signed the Preliminary Articles of Peace ending the Revolutionary War on November 30, 1782.
Until a definitive peace treaty was signed, the United States was still technically at war. British and French fleets continued to fight on the high seas and in the Caribbean, but no land actions took place on the North American continent. A very difficult but important leadership scenario in our nation’s history.