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and written so much and so long on the subject, that my acquaintance are weary of hearing, and the public of reading any more of it, which begins to make me weary of talking and writing; especially as I do not mid that 1 have gained any point, in either country, except that of rendering myself suspected, by my impartiality; in England, of being too much an American, and in America, of being too much an Englishman. Your opinion, however, weighs with me, and encourages me to try one effort more, in a full, though concise statement of facts, accompanied with arguments drawn from those facts, to be published about the meeting of parliament, after the holidays.*
If any good may be done I shall rejoice; but at present I almost despair.
Have you ever seen the barometer so low as of late? The 23d instant mine was at 38. 41. and yet the weather fine and fair. With sincere esteem, I am, dear friend, yours affectionately, B. Franklin.
To M. Durourg,' Paris.
Great Britain no right to tax the North American colonies.
London, October 2, 1770. I see with pleasure that we think pretty muck alike on the subjects of English America. We of the colonies have never insisted that we ought to be exempt from contributing to the common expenses necessary to support the prosperity of the empire. We only assert, that having parliaments of our own, and not having representatives in
1 Uncertain what is the publication promised in this letter; possibly the one intitled "Causes of the American Discontents before 1768." See Writings, Part i.
z Translator of Dr. Franklin's Philosophical Works,
that of Great Britain, our parliaments are the only judges of what we can and what we ought to contribute in this ease; and that ihe English parliament has no right to take our money without our consent. In fact, the British empire is not a single state; it comprehends many; and though the parliament of Great Britain has arrogated to itself the power of taxing the colonies, it has no more right to do so than it has to tax Hanover. We have the same king, but not the same legislatures.
The dispute between the two countries has already lost England many millions sterling, which it has lost in its commerce, and America has in this respect been a proportionable gainer. This commerce consisted principally of superfluities; objects of luxury and fashion, which we can well do without; and the resolution we have formed of importing no more till our grievances are redressed, has enabled many of our infant manufactures to take root; and it will not be easy to make our people abandon-them in future, even should a connexion more cordial than ever succeed the present troubles. 1 have indeed no doubt that the parliament of England will finally abandon its present pretensions, and leave us to the peaceable enjoyment of our rights and privileges.
To Governor Franklin.
Removal of Lord Hillsborough,—succeeded by Lord Dartmouth. f . Dear Son, London, August 17, 1772.
At length we have got rid of Lord Hillsborough, and Lord Dartmouth takes his place, to the great satisfaction of all the friends of America. You will hear it said among you (I suppose) that the interest of the Ohio planters has ousted him; but the truth is, what I wrote you long since, that all his brother-ministers disliked him extremely and wished for a fair occasion of tripping up his heels; so seeing that he made a point of defeating our scheme, they made another of supporting it, on purpose to mortify him, which they knew his pride could not bear. I do not mean that they would have done this if they had thought our proposal bad in itself, or his opposition well founded; but 1 believe if he had been on good terms with them, they would not have differed with him for so small a matter. The K. too was tired of him, and of his administration, which had weakened the affection and respect of the colouies for a royal government, with which (1 may say it to you) I used proper means from time to time that his M. should have due information and convincing proofs. More of this when I see you. The K.'s dislike made the others more firmly united in the resolution of disgracing H. by setting at nought his famous report. But now that business is done, perhaps our affair may be less regarded in the cabinet* and suffered to linger, and possibly may yet miscarry. Therefore let us beware of every word and action that may betray a confidence in its success, lest we render ourselves ridiculous in case of disappointment. We are now pushing for a completion of the business; but the time is unfavorable, every body gone or going into the country, which gives room for accidents. I am writing by Falconer, and therefore in this only add that 1 am ever your affectionate father,
P. S. The regard Lord D. has always done me the honor to express for me, gives me room to hope being able to obtain more iu favor of our colonies upon occasion, than 1 could for some time past. «
To Governor Franklin.
Dear Son, London, Jugiut 19, 1772.
I received yours of June .30. I am vexed that my letter to you, written at Glasgow, miscarried; not so much that you did not receive it, as that it is probubly in other hands, ft contained some accounts of what passed in Ireland, which were for you only. i
As lord Hillsborough in fact got nothing out of me, I should rather suppose he threw me away as an orange that would yield no juice, and therefore not worth more squeezing. When I had been a little while returned to London I waited on him to thank him for his civilities in Ireland, and to disT course with him on a Georgia affair. The porter told me he was not at home. I left my card, went another time, and received the same answer, though I knew he was at home, a friend of mine being with him. After intermissions of a week each, 1 made two more visits, and received the same answer. The last time was on a levee day, when a number of carriages were at his door. My coachman driving up, alighted, and was opening the coach door, when the porter, seeing me, came out, and surlily chid the c oachman for opening the door before he had inquired whether my lord was at home; and then turning to me, said, " My lord is not at home." I have never since been nigh him, and we have only abused one another at a distance. The contrast, as you. observe, is very striking between his conversation with the chief justice, and his letter to you concerning your province. I know him to be as double and deceitful as any man I ever met with. But we have done with him, I hope, for ever. His removal has 1 believe been meditated ever since the death of the princess dowager. For I recollect, that on my complaining of him about that time to a friend at court, whom you may guess, he told me, we Americans were represented by Hillsborough as an unquiet people, not easily satisfied with any ministry; that however it was thought too much occasion had been given us to dislike the present: and asked me whether, if he should be removed, I could name another likely to be more acceptable to us. I said yes; there is Lord Dartmouth: we liked him very well when he was at the head of the board formerly, and probably should like him again. This I heard no more of; but I am pretty sure it was reported where I could wish it, though I know not that it had any effect.
As to my situation here nothing can be more agreeable, especially as I hope for less embarrassment from the new minister. A general respect paid me by the learned, a number of friends and acquaintance among them, with whom I have a pleasing intercourse; a character of so much weight, that it has protected me when some in power would have done me injury, and continued me in an office they would have deprived me of; my company so much desired, that I seldom dine at home in winter, and could spend the whole summer in the country-houses of inviting friends if I chose it. Learned and ingenious foreigners that come to England, almost all make a point of visiting me; for my reputation is still higher abroad than here; several of the foreign ambassadors have assiduously cultivated my acquaintance, treating me as one of their corps, partly I believe from the desire they have from- time to time of hearing something of American affairs, an object become of importance in foreign courts, who begin to hope Britain's alarming power will be diminished by the defection of her colonies; and partly that they may have an opportunity of introducing me to the geo