A Guide to the Mediterranean Pass for Rising Sun, 1819-1824 Mediterranean Pass for Rising Sun SC 0009

A Guide to the Mediterranean Pass for "Rising Sun," 1819-1824

A Collection in the
Thomas Balch Library
Collection Number SC 0009


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Thomas Balch Library

Thomas Balch Library
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Email: balchlib@leesburgva.gov
URL: http://www.leesburgva.gov/government/departments/thomas-balch-library/

© 2006 By Thomas Balch Library. All rights reserved.

Processed by: Rebecca K. Ottinger

Repository
Thomas Balch Library
Collection number
SC 0009
Title
Mediterranean Pass for Rising Sun1819-1824
Size
1 item
Creator
John Quincy Adams (1767-1848) and James Monroe (1758-1831)
Language
English
Abstract
Part of a Mediterranean Pass issued to the ship Rising Sun

Administrative Information

Access Restrictions

Collection is open to research.

Use Restrictions

No physical characteristics affect use of this material.

Preferred Citation

Mediterranean Pass for Rising Sun, 1819-1924 (SC 0009), Thomas Balch Library, Leesburg, VA.

Provenance

Loudoun County Historical Society, Loudoun County, VA

Alternative Form Available

None

Accruals

2004.0001

Processing Information

Processed by Rebecca K. Ottinger 14 Aug 2006. Formerly filed in NUCMC 66 with Loudoun County Historical Society's records.


Historical Information

For many years prior to the time of this document, pirates based in Tunis, Tripoli, Algiers, and Morocco on the northern coast of Africa, known as the Barbary Coast, had preyed on ships in the Mediterranean Sea and eastern part of the Atlantic Ocean. European nations made payments to these countries to ensure the safety of their merchant vessels.

While the American Colonies were under British rule, they were protected by payments of the mother country and the power of the British navy. However, after the American Revolution officially ended in 1783, ships of the newly independent United States had to manage on their own. For years the Presidents and Congress debated the practice of paying tributes for safe passage for vessels, although they continued to make the payments. Twice the United States sent ships to the Mediterranean to fight the pirates, in 1801 and 1815. Following the second "war" the tribute payments ended.

In 1796 a new Federal law required the government to begin issuing Passports to ships owned by United States citizens to verify the nationality of the ship. The document, called a Mediterranean Pass, was based on the British passport. The top of the document was cut in a scalloped design and sent to the United States consuls in the Barbary states as a method of verifying the authenticity of the pass. The top half of the form contained two engravings. Signatures of the President of the United States and the Secretary of State were in the lower right hand portion, and the seal of the United States in the lower left section. The pass was good for multiple voyages, but had to be surrendered if the ship was sold.

As the United States' power grew and shipping became safer, the Mediterranean Pass came to be regarded as less important by shipmasters. The $10.00 fee for obtaining the document was discontinued in 1831. By 1860, the Mediterranean Pass was no longer in use.

Scope and Content

The document is part of a Mediterranean Pass issued to the ship Rising Sun; the left portion appears to have been cut off. It is signed by President James Monroe and Secretary of State John Quincy Adams, and issued to Rising Sun on 9 June 1819. The writing on the back shows the pass was used as late as 1822. It was surrendered on 5 April 1824.


Adjunct Descriptive Data

Bibliography

Gawalt, Gerald W., America and the Barbary Pirates: An International Battle Against an Unconventional Foe, The Thomas Jefferson Papers, The Library of Congress. Stein, Douglas L., American Maritime Documents, 1776-1860, Mediterranean Passport/Sea Letter, Mystic Seaport: The Museum of America and the Sea, G.W. Blunt White Library. http://www.mysticseaport.org HMF 4, Mediterranean Passport, 1819, William Rotch (Ship), Mystic Seaport. org. The Museum of America and the Sea, G.W. Blunt White Library. http://www.mysticseaport.org

Other Finding Aid

None


Other Finding Aid

None


Bibliography

Gawalt, Gerald W., America and the Barbary Pirates: An International Battle Against an Unconventional Foe, The Thomas Jefferson Papers, The Library of Congress. Stein, Douglas L., American Maritime Documents, 1776-1860, Mediterranean Passport/Sea Letter, Mystic Seaport: The Museum of America and the Sea, G.W. Blunt White Library. http://www.mysticseaport.org HMF 4, Mediterranean Passport, 1819, William Rotch (Ship), Mystic Seaport. org. The Museum of America and the Sea, G.W. Blunt White Library. http://www.mysticseaport.org

Contents List

Folder 1: Mediterranean Pass for Rising Sun , 1819-1824