« ZurückWeiter »
refer you for farther particulars. I have wrote facts to
the best of my knowledge, and, leaving you to reason
or conjecture from them, I am, &c. SAMUEL Cooper.
TO MRS. JANE MECOM.
.#buse from his Enemies. – False Reports respecting his Conduct. London, 26 September, 1774. DEAR SISTER,
I hope you continue in health, as I do, thanks to God. But I wish to know how you fare in the present distress of our dear country. I am apprehensive, that the letters between us, though very innocent ones, are intercepted. They might restore to me yours at least, after reading them; especially as I never complain of broken, patched-up seals (of late very com
mon), because I know not on whom to fix the fact. I see in a Boston paper of August 18th, an article expressing, “that it is generally believed Dr. Franklin has received a promise of being restored to the royal favor, and promoted to an office superior to that which he resigned.” I have made no public answer to any of the abuses I have received in the papers here, nor shall I to this. But as I am anxious to preserve your good opinion, and as I know your sentiments, and that you must be much afflicted yourself, and even despise me, if you thought me capable of accepting any office from this government, while it is acting with so much hostility towards my native country, I cannot miss this first opportunity of assuring you, that there is not the least foundation for such a report; that, so far from having any promise of royal favor, I hear of
nothing but royal and ministerial displeasure; which, indeed, as things at present stand, I consider as an honor. I have seen no minister since January, nor had the least communication with them. The generous and noble friends of America in both Houses do indeed favor me with their notice and regard; but they are in disgrace at court, as well as myself. Be satisfied, that I shall do nothing to lessen me in your esteem, or my own. I shall not, by the least concurrence with the present measures, merit any court favor, nor accept of any, if it were offered me, which, however, is not at all likely to happen.
As those here, who most interest themselves in behalf of America, conceive, that my being present at the arrival of the proceedings of the Congress and the meeting of Parliament may be of use, I submit to their judgment, and think it now likely, that I shall not return till spring. I am ever, &c.
TO RICHARD BACHE,
Introducing Thomas Paine.
London, 30 September, 1774 DEAR SoN,
The bearer, Mr. Thomas Paine, is very well recommended to me, as an ingenious, worthy young man. He goes to Pennsylvania with a view of settling there. I request you to give him your best advice and countenance, as he is quite a stranger there. If you can put him in a way of obtaining employment as a clerk, or assistant tutor in a school, or assistant surveyor, (of all which I think him very capable,) so that he may procure a subsistence at least, till he can make acquaintance and obtain a knowledge of the country,
you will do well, and much oblige your affectionate
father. My love to Sally and the boys.” B. FRANKLIN.
TO JOSEPH GALLOWAY.
Elections for a new Parliament. — Lord Percy. — The Court will persist in its JMeasures against America. — Inutility of Parliament as at present constructed. — His own Situation. London, 12 October, 1774. DEAR SIR, I wrote to you on the 1st instant by Captain Cook, acquainting you with the disposition of Parliament, since which the elections are going on briskly everywhere for a new one. (The electors of London, Westminster, the Borough of Southwark, and the County of Middlesex, have obliged their candidates to sign a written engagement, that they will endeavour to obtain a repeal of the late oppressive and unconstitutional American laws, and promote a reconciliation between the two countries,) Their example will be followed in some other places, and it is thought would have been pretty general in the trading and manufacturing towns, if the suddenness of the dissolution had not hurried things too much. It being objected to one of the candidates set up for Westminster, Lord Percy, that he is absent on the wicked business of cutting the throats of our American brethren, his friends have thought necessary this morning to publish a letter of his, expressing that he is on good terms with the people of Boston, and much respected by them. These circumstances show, that the American cause begins to be more popular here. Yet the court talk boldly of persisting in their measures, and three ships of the line are fitting out for America, which are to be over-manned, to have a double number of marines, and several armed tenders. It is rumored they are to stop all the ports of America. Many think the new Parliament will be for reversing the late proceedings; but that depends on the court, on which every Parliament seems to be dependent; so much so, that I begin to think the Parliament here of little use to the people; for since a Parliament is always to do as a ministry would have it, why should we not be governed by the ministry in the first instance " They could afford to govern us much cheaper, the Parliament being a very expensive machine, that requires a great deal of oiling and greasing at the people's charge; for they finally pay all the enormous salaries of places, the pensions, and the bribes, now by custom become necessary to induce the members to vote according to their consciences. My situation here is thought by many to be a little hazardous; for is, by some accident, the troops and people of New England should come to blows, I should probably be taken up; the ministerial people affecting everywhere to represent me as the cause of all the misunderstanding; and I have been frequently cautioned to secure my papers, and by some advised to withdraw. But I venture to stay, in compliance with the wish of others, till the result of the Congress arrives, since they suppose my being here might on that occasion be of use; and I confide in my innocence, that the worst which can happen to me will be an imprisonment upon suspicion, though that is a thing I should much desire to avoid, as it may be expensive and vexatious, as well as dangerous to my health. With great respect and esteem, I am ever, dear Sir, &c. B. FRANKLIN.
* In the first letter, which Paine wrote to Dr. Franklin from Philadelphia, he said; “Your countenancing me has obtained for me many friends and much reputation, for which please to accept my sincere thanks. I have been applied to by several gentlemen to instruct their sons, on very advantageous terms to myself; and a printer and bookseller here, a man of reputation and property, Robert Aitkin, has lately attempted a Magazine, but, having little or no turn that way himself, he has applied to me for assistance. He had not above six hundred subscribers when I first assisted him. We have now upwards of fifteen hundred, and oaily increasing. I have not entered into terms with him. This is only the second number. The first I was not concerned in.”—March 4th, 1775.
To Thomas cushing.
Lord Chatham's JMotion for conciliatory JMeasures. – JMore Troops sent to America.-General Gage. London, 28 January, 1775. SIR, It gives my mind some ease to learn, that such good care is taken both by the general and the town to prevent mischief. I hope that care will continue, and be effectual, and that people will be persuaded to wait with patience the event of the application of the Congress to the King, and the subsequent result of the ensuing Congress thereupon. Lord Chatham moved last week in the House of Lords, that an address be presented to his Majesty, humbly beseeching him to withdraw the troops from Boston, as a step towards opening the way to conciliatory measures; but, after a long and warm debate, the motion was rejected by a majority of seventyseven to eighteen; and open declarations were made, by the ministerial side, of the intention to enforce the