Treaty of Peace between the United States and Morocco, Meknes, 16 September 1836
In the name of God, the merciful and Clement!
(Abd Errahman Ibenu Kesham whom God exalt!)
Praise be to God!
This is the copy of the Treaty of peace which we have made with the Americans; and
written in this book; affixing thereto our blessed Seal, that, with the help of God, it
may remain firm for ever.
Written at Meccanez, the City of Olives, on the 3d day of the month Jumad el lahhar, in
the year of the Hegira 1252. (corresponding to Sept. 16. A.D. 1836.)
ART. I. We declare that both Parties have agreed that this Treaty, consisting of Twenty
five Articles, shall be inserted in this Book, and delivered to James R. Leib, Agent of
the United States, and now their Resident Consul at Tangier, with whose approbation it has
been made, and who is duly authorized on their part, to treat with us, concerning all the
matters contained therein.
ART. 2. If either of the parties shall be at war with any nation whatever, the other
hall not take a commission from the enemy, nor fight under their colors.
ART. 3. If either of the parties shall be at war with any nation whatever, and take a
prize belonging to that nation, and there shall be found on board subjects or effects
belonging to either of the parties, the subjects shall be set at liberty, and the effects
returned to the owners. And if any goods, belonging to any nation, with whon [sic] either
of the parties shall be at war, shall be loaded on vessels belonging to the other party,
they shall pass free and unmolested, without any attempt being made to take or detain
ART. 4. A signal, or pass, shall be given to all vessels belonging to both parties, by
which they are to be known when they meet at sea: and if the Commander of a ship of war of
either party shall have other ships under his convoy, the declaration of the Commander
shall alone be sufficient to exempt any of them from examination.
ART. 5. If either of the parties shall be at war, and shall meet a vessel at sea
belonging to the other, it is agreed, that if an examination is to be made, it shall be
done by sending a boat with two or three men only: and if any gun shall be fired, and
injury done, without reason, the offending party shall make good all damages.
ART. 6. If any Moor shall bring citizens of the United States, or their effects, to his
Majesty, the citizens shall immediately be set at liberty, and the effects restored: and,
in like manner, if any Moor, not a subject of these dominions, shall make prize of any of
the citizens of America or their effects, and bring them into any of the ports of his
Majesty, they shall be immediately released, as they will then be considered as under his
ART. 7 If any vessel of either party, shall put into a port of the other, and have
occasion for provisions or other supplies, they shall be furnished without any
interruption or molestation.
ART. 8. If any vessel of the United States, shall meet with a disaster at sea, and put
into one of our ports to repair, she shall be at liberty to land and reload her cargo,
without paying any duty whatever.
ART. 9. If any vessel of the United States, shall be cast on shore on any part of our
coasts, she shall remain at the disposition of the owners, and no one shall attempt going
near her without their approbation, as she is then considered particularly under our
protection; and if any vessel of the United States shall be forced to put into our ports
by stress of weather, or otherwise, she shall not be compelled to land her cargo, but
shall remain in tranquility until the commander shall think proper to proceed on his
ART. 10. If any vessel of either of the parties shall have an engagement with a vessel
belonging to any of the Christian powers, within gun-shot of the forts of the other, the
vessel so engaged, shall be defended and protected as much as possible, until she is in
safety: and if any American vessel shall be cast on shore, on the coast of Wadnoon, or any
coast thereabout, the people belonging to her, shall be protected and assisted, until by
the help of God, they shall be sent to their country.
ART. 11. If we shall be at war with any Christian power, and any of our vessels sails
from the ports of the United States, no vessel belonging to the enemy shall follow, until
twenty-four hours after the departure of our vessels: and the same regulation shall be
observed towards the American vessels sailing from our ports, be their enemies Moors or
ART. 12. If any ship of war belonging to the United States, shall put into any of our
ports, she shall not be examined on any pretence whatever, even though she should have
fugitive slaves on board, nor shall the governor or commander of the place compel them to
be brought on shore on any pretext, nor require any payment for them.
ART. 13. If a ship of war of either party shall put into a port of the other, and
salute, it shall be returned from the fort with an equal number of guns, not more or less.
ART. 14. The commerce with the United States, shall be on the same footing as is the
commerce with Spain, or as that with the most favored nation for the time being; and their
citizens shall be respected and esteemed, and have full liberty to pass and repass our
country and sea-ports whenever they please, without interruption.
ART. 15. Merchants of both countries shall employ only such interpreters, and such
other persons to assist them in their business, as they shall think proper. No commander
of a vessel shall transport his cargo on board another vessel: he shall not be detained in
port longer than he may think proper; and all persons employed in loading or unloading
goods, or in any other labor whatever, shall be paid at the customary rates, not more and
ART. 16. In case of a war between the parties, the prisoners are not to be made slaves,
but to be exchanged one for another. Cap- tain for Captain, Officer for Officer, and one
private man for another; and if there shall prove a deficiency on either side, it shall be
made up by the payment of one hundred Mexican dollars for each person wanting. And it is
agreed, that all prisoners shall be exchanged in twelve months from the time of their
being taken, and that this exchange may be effected by a merchant, or any other person,
authorized by either of the parties.
ART. 17. Merchants shall not be compelled to buy or sell any kind of goods but such as
they shall think proper: and may buy and sell all sorts of merchandise but such as are
prohibited to the other Christian nations.
ART. 18. All goods shall be weighed and examined before they are sent on board; and to
avoid all detention of vessels, no examination shall afterwards be made, unless it shall
first be proved that contraband goods have been sent on board; in which case, the persons
who took the contraband goods on board, shall be punished according to the usage and
custom of the country, and no other person whatever shall be injured, nor shall the ship
or cargo incur any penalty or damage whatever.
ART. 19. No vessel shall be detained in port on any pretence what- ever, nor be obliged
to take on board any article without the consent of the Commander, who shall be at full
liberty to agree for the freight of any goods he takes on board.
ART. 20. If any of the citizens of the United States, or any persons under their
protection, shall have any dispute with each other, the Consul shall decide between the
parties; and whenever the Consul shall require any aid, or assistance from our government,
to enforce his decisions, it shall be immediately granted to him.
ART. 21. If a citizen of the United States should kill or wound a Moor, or, on the
contrary, if a Moor shall kill or wound a citizen of the United States, the law of the
Country shall take place, and equal justice shall be rendered, the Consul assisting at the
trial; and if any delinquent shall make his escape, the Consul shall not be answerable for
him in any manner whatever.
ART. 22. If an American citizen shall die in our country, and no will shall appear, the
Consul shall take possession of his effects; and if there shall be no Consul, the effects
shall be deposited in the hands of some person worthy of trust, until the party shall
appear who has a right to demand them; but if the heir to the person deceased be present,
the property shall be delivered to him without interruption; and if a will shall appear
the property shall descend agreeably to that will, as soon as the Consul shall declare the
ART. 23. The Consul of the United States of America, shall reside in any seaport of our
dominions that they shall think proper: and they shall be respected, and enjoy all the
priviliges which the Consuls of any other Nation enjoy: and if any of the citizens of the
United States shall contract any debts or engagements, the Consul shall not be in any
manner accountable for them, unless he shall have given a promise in writing for the
payment or fulfilling thereof; without which promise in writing, no application to him for
any redress shall be made.
ART. 24. If any differences shall arise by either party infringing on any of the
Articles of this treaty, peace and harmony shall remain notwithstanding, in the fullest
force, until a friendly application shall be made for an arrangement; and until that
application shall be rejected, no appeal shall be made to arms. And if a war shall break
out between the parties, nine months shall be granted to all the subjects of both parties,
to dispose of their effects and retire with their property. And it is further declared,
that whatever indulgence, in trade or otherwise, shall be granted to any of the Christian
powers, the citizens of he United States shall be equally entitled to them.
ART. 25. This Treaty shall continue in force, with the help of God, for fifty years;
after the expiration of which term, the Treaty shall continue to be binding on both
parties, until the one hall give twelve months notice to the other of an intention to
abandon it; in which case, its operations shall cease at the end of the twelve months.
CONSULATE OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA.
For The Empire of Morocco.
TO ALL WHOM IT MAY CONCERN.
BE IT KNOWN.
Whereas the undersigned, James R. Leib, a Citizen of the United States of North
America, and now their Resident Consul at Tangier, having been duly appointed
Commissioner, by letters patent, under the signature of the President and Seal of the
United States of North America, bearing date, at the City of Washington, the Fourth day of
July A.D. 1835, for negotiating and concluding a Treaty of peace and friendship between
the United States of North America and the Empire of Morocco; I, therefore, James R. Leib,
Commissioner as aforesaid, do conclude the foregoing Treaty and every Article and clause
therein contained; reserving the same, nevertheless, for the final ratification of the
President of the United States of North America, by and with the advice and consent of the
In testimony whereof, I have hereunto affixed my signature, and the Seal of this
Consulate, on the First day of October, in the year of our Lord One Thousand eight hundred
and Thirty six, and of the Independence of the United States the Sixty First.
[Seal] JAMES R. LEIB
Texts: Miller, Treaties and other International Acts of the United States, IV,
Malloy, Treaties etc. between the United States and Other Powers, p. 1212ff
British and Foreign State Papers, XXIV, p. 702ff
Martens, Nouveau Recueil des Traits, XIV, p. 685 ff
Martens et de Cussy, Recueil Manuel et Pratique des Traits, IV, p. 443ff
Consolidated Treaty Series, vol 86, 198ff_
Contributed by C. R. Pennell, University of Melbourne, email@example.com