Volume 7 of The Selected Papers of John Jay opens in 1799 with John Jay well into his second term as governor of New York. After overseeing the passage of the law for gradually abolishing slavery in March 1799, Jay’s administration faltered in its final months due to an ascendant Republican Party and a subsequent paralyzing conflict with the Council of Appointment. Retirement from public service in May 1801 provided a welcome opportunity to focus on family and farming, yet Jay’s domestic enjoyment was upended the following year by the untimely loss of his beloved wife and partner, Sarah Livingston Jay. Although rarely away from his Bedford homestead, Jay did participate, albeit in a limited manner, in political and religious affairs. The volume discusses his role in advising and assisting Federalist leaders during the War of 1812, his engagement with the Episcopal Church, and his leadership of the American Bible Society starting in 1821. Moreover, Jay maintained a steady correspondence with several individuals who sought information about the revolutionary conflict and the founding of the American republic. Volume 7 concludes with coverage of Jay’s declining health and diminished activities during the 1820s and his eventual death as he succumbed to illness on May 17, 1829.

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