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to New-York, to obtain a final settlement of those accounts, he having long acted as my secretary, and, being well acquainted with the transactions, was able to give an explanation of the articles that might seem to require explaining, if any such there were. He returned without effecting the settlement, being told that it would not be made till the arrival of some documents expected from France. What those documents were I have not been informed, nor can I readily conceive, as all the vouchers existing there had been examined by Mr. Barclay. And I having been immediately after my arrival engaged in public business of this state, I waited in expectation of hearing from Congress, in case any part of my accounts had been object

ed to.

"It is now more than three years that those accounts have been before that honourable body, and to this day no notice of any such objection has been communicated to me. But reports have for some time past been circulated here, and propagated in newspapers, that I am greatly indebted to the United States for large sums that had been put into my hands, and that I avoid a settlement.

"This, together with the little time one of my age may expect to live, makes it necessary for me to request earnestly, which I hereby do, that the Congress would be pleased, without farther delay, to examine those accounts, and if they find therein any article or articles which they do not understand or approve, that they would cause me to be acquainted with the same, that I may have an opportunity of offering such explanations or reasons in support of them as may be in my power, and then that the account may be finally closed.

"I hope the Congress will soon be able to attend to this business for the satisfaction of the public, as well as in condescension to my request. In the mean time, if there be no impropriety in it, I would desire that this letter, together with another on the

same subject, the copy of which is hereto annexed, be put upon their minutes.




"Mrs. Green.

"Philadelphia, March 2, 1789.

Having now done with public affairs, which have hitherto taken up so much of my time, I shall endeavour to enjoy, during the small remainder of life that is left to me, some of the pleasures of conversing with my old friends by writing, since their distance prevents my hope of seeing them again.


"I received one of the bags of sweet corn you was so good as to send me a long time since, but the other never came to hand; even the letter mentioning it, though dated December 10, 1787, has been above a year on its way, for I received it but about two weeks since from Baltimore, in Maryland. The corn I did receive was excellent, and gave me great pleasure. Accept my hearty thanks. I am, as you suppose in the above-mentioned old letter, much pleased to hear that my young friend Ray is smart in the farming way,' and makes such substantial fences. I think agriculture the most honourable of all employments, being the most independent. The farmer has no need of popular favour, nor the favour of the great; the success of his crops depending only on the blessing of God upon his honest industry. I congratulate your good spouse, that he as well as myself is now free from public cares, and that he can bend his whole attention to his farming, which will afford him both profit and pleasure; a business which nobody knows better how to manage with advantage. I am too old to follow printing again myself, but, loving the business, I have brought up

my grandson Benjamin to it, and have built and furnished a printing-house for him, which he now manages under my eyė. I have great pleasure in the rest of my grandchildren, who are now in number eight, and all promising, the youngest only six months old, but shows signs of great good-nature. My friends here are numerous, and I enjoy as much of their conversation as I can reasonably wish; and I have as much health and cheerfulness as can well be expected at my age, now eighty-two. Hitherto this long life has been tolerably happy, so that, if I were allowed to live it over again, I should make no objection, only wishing for leave to do, what authors do in a second edition of their works, correct some of my errata. Among the felicities of my life I reckon your friendship, which I shall remember with pleasure as long as life lasts, being ever, my dear friend, yours most affectionately,


"Dr. Price.

“Philadelphia, May 31, 1789.


"I lately received your kind letter, enclosing one from Miss Kitty Shipley, informing me of the good bishop's decease, which afflicted me greatly. My friends drop off one after another, when my age and infirmities prevent me making new ones, and if I still retain the necessary activity and ability, I hardly see among the existing generation where I could make them of equal goodness. So that, the longer I live, I must expect to be the more wretched. As we draw nearer the conclusion of life, nature furnishes us with more helps to wean us from it, among which one of the most powerful is the loss of such dear friends.

"I send you with this the two volumes of our Transactions, as I forget whether you had the first before. If you had, you will please to give this to the French ambassador, requesting his conveyance of it to the good Duke de la Rochefoucauld. My best wishes attend you, being ever, with sincere and great esteem, my dear friend, yours most affection ately, B. FRANKLIN."

"B. Vaughan.



'Philadelphia, June 3, 1789.

"I received your kind letter of March 4, and wish I may be able to complete what you so earnestly desire, the Memoirs of my Life. But of late I am so interrupted by extreme pain, which obliges me to have recourse to opium, that between the effects of both I have but little time in which I can write anything. My grandson, however, is copying what is done, which will be sent to you for your opinion, by the next vessel; and not merely for your opinion, but for your advice; for I find it a difficult task to speak decently and properly of one's own conduct; and I feel the want of a judicious friend to encourage me in scratching out.

"I have condoled sincerely with the bishop of St. Asaph's family. He was an excellent man. Losing our friends thus one by one is the tax we pay for long living; and it is indeed a heavy one!

"I have not seen the King of Prussia's posthumous works; what you mention makes me desirous to have them. Please to mention it to your brother William, and that I request he would add them to the books I have desired him to buy for me.

"Our new government is now in train, and seems to promise well. But events are in the hand of God! I am ever, my dear friend, yours most affectionately, B. FRANKLIN."

"Dr. Rush.


[Without date, but supposed to be in 1789.]

"MY DEAR Friend,

"During our long acquaintance you have shown many instances of your regard for me, yet I must now desire you to add one more to the number, which is, that if you publish your ingenious discourse on the moral sense, you will totally omit and suppress that extravagant encomium on your friend Franklin, which hurt me exceedingly in the unexpected hearing, and will mortify me beyond conception if it should appear from the press.


Confiding in your compliance with this earnest request, I am ever, my dear friend, yours most affectionately, B. FRANKLIN."

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To Miss Catharine Louisa Shipley.


Philadelphia, April 27, 1789. "It is only a few days since the kind letter of my dear young friend, dated December 24, came to my hands. I had before, in the public papers, met with the afflicting news that letter contained. That excellent man has then left us! his departure is a loss, not to his family and friends only, but to his nation and to the world: for he was intent on doing good, had wisdom to devise the means, and talents to promote them. His sermon before the Society for Propagating the Gospel, and "his speech intended to be spoken," are proofs of his ability as well as his humanity. Had his counsels in those pieces been attended to by the ministers, how much bloodshed might have been prevented, and how much expense and disgrace to the nation avoided!

"Your reflections on the constant calmness and composure attending his death are very sensible. Such instances seem to show that the good some

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