Treaty of Paris 1783
The Treaty of Paris, signed on 3 September 1783, concluded the American Revolution and established a boundary between the newly-independent American colonies and remaining British territories in North America.
The Treaty of Paris, signed on 3 September 1783, concluded the American Revolution and established a boundary between the newly-independent American colonies and remaining British territories in North America. The agreement also gave the United States lands reserved for Aboriginal peoples through previous negotiations with Britain, betraying earlier treaties and alliances.
On 3 September 1783, in Paris, Britain acknowledged American independence and recognized a boundary along the centre of four Great Lakes (Ontario, Erie, Huron and Superior) and from Lake of the Woods "due west" to what they imagined was the location of the Mississippi's headwaters, and then south along the Mississippi River. The Americans, negotiating through Charles Gravier, the French comte de Vergennes, obtained fishing rights off Newfoundland and access to the eastern banks of the Mississippi; in turn, they promised restitution and compensation to British Loyalists.
Through the Treaty of Paris, Britain also gave the United States the valuable lands it had reserved for Indigenous peoples by the Royal Proclamation of 1763. This ignored numerous treaties made with Aboriginal peoples, who were not invited to the Paris negotiations. Many Indigenous people were thunderstruck at this betrayal.
Between Britain and the United States, the treaty proved ineffective. Britain retained its western posts until after Jay’s Treaty (1794), and denied the United States free navigation of the St Lawrence River. The Americans largely ignored their promises to the Loyalists, many of whom settled in Canada. Nevertheless, Britain soon resumed trading with, and investing in, the new republic.