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the late measures for a change of government. Allowing this to be true, it was so far from being an objection in the opinion of his friends, that it afforded one of the best reasons for intrusting to him the prosecution of those measures. It was further objected, that he was not in favor with the ministers, that he stood on ill terms with the Proprietaries, and that he was extremely disagreeable to a large number of the inhabitants of the province; all of which, as declared by the protesters, disqualified him for the agency he was about to undertake.

He wrote remarks on these charges, just before his departure for England, examining them in detail, replying to each, and saying at the conclusion; "I am now to take leave, perhaps a last leave, of the country I love, and in which I have spent the greatest part of my life. Esto perpetua, I wish every kind of prosperity to my friends; and I forgive my enemies." This forgiveness he could the more easily bestow, since his enemies, with all their industrious efforts to defame and injure him as a public man, had never insinuated a suspicion unfavorable to his private reputation or his character as a citizen.

There being no money in the treasury, that could be immediately appropriated to defray the agent's expenses, the Assembly voted, that these expenses should be provided for in the next bill that should be passed for raising money. Upon the strength of this pledge, the merchants, in two hours, subscribed eleven hundred pounds as a loan to the public for this object. On the 7th of November, only twelve days after his appointment, Franklin left Philadelphia, accompanied by a cavalcade of three hundred citizens, who attended him to Chester, where he was to go on board the vessel. "The affectionate leave taken of me by so

many dear friends at Chester," said he, "was very endearing; God bless them and all Pennsylvania." He sailed the next day, but the vessel was detained over night at Reedy Island in the Delaware. At that place he wrote a letter to his daughter, from which the following is an extract.

"My dear child, the natural prudence and goodness of heart God has blessed you with, make it less necessary for me to be particular in giving you advice. I shall therefore only say, that the more attentively dutiful and tender you are towards your good mamma, the more you will recommend yourself to me. But why should I mention me, when you have so much higher a promise in the commandments, that such conduct will recommend you to the favor of God. You know I have many enemies, all indeed on the public account, (for I cannot recollect, that I have in a private capacity given just cause of offence to any one whatever,) yet they are enemies, and very bitter ones; and you must expect their enmity will extend in some degree to you, so that your slightest indiscretions will be magnified into crimes, in order the more sensibly to wound and afflict me. It is, therefore, the more necessary for you to be extremely circumspect in all your behaviour, that no advantage may be given to their malevolence.

"Go constantly to church, whoever preaches. The act of devotion in the Common Prayer Book is your principal business there, and, if properly attended to, will do more towards amending the heart than sermons generally can do. For they were composed by men of much greater piety and wisdom, than our common composers of sermons can pretend to be; and therefore I wish you would never miss the prayer days; yet I do not mean you should despise sermons,

even of the preachers you dislike; for the discourse is often much better than the man, as sweet and clear waters come through very dirty earth. I am the more particular on this head, as you seemed to express, a little before I came away, some inclination to leave our church, which I would not have you do."

After a tempestuous voyage of thirty days, he landed at Portsmouth, and proceeded immediately to London, where he again took lodgings at Mrs. Stevenson's in Craven Street. When the news of his safe arrival came back to Philadelphia, his friends celebrated the event by the ringing of bells and other demonstrations of joy.

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CHAPTER IV.

Origin of the Stamp Act. - Franklin's Opposition to it. His Remarks on the Passage of the Act, in a Letter to Charles Thomson. - False Charges against him in Relation to this Subject. - Dean Tucker.— Effects of the Stamp Act in America. - Franklin's Examination before Parliament. Stamp Act repealed. - Mr. Pitt. Declaratory Act.-American Paper Currency. - Franklin's Answer to Lord Hillsborough's Report against it.— New Scheme for taxing the Colonies by supplying them with Paper Money. - Franklin travels in Holland and Germany. - His Ideas of the Nature of the Union between the Colonies and Great Britain. - Plan of a Colonial Representation in Parliament.-Franklin visits Paris. His "Account of the Causes of the American Discontents."- Change of Ministry. Lord Hillsborough at the Head of the American Department. — Rumor that Dr. Franklin was to have an Office under him.

HENCEFORTH We are to pursue the career of Franklin on a broader theatre of action. Although he went to England as a special agent for Pennsylvania, yet circumstances soon led him to take an active and conspicuous part in the general affairs of the colonies. The policy avowed by the British government after the treaty of Paris, and the fruits of that policy in new restrictions on the colonial trade, had already spread discontent throughout the country. The threatened measure of the Stamp Act had contributed to increase this discontent, and fix it more deeply in the hearts of the people. The colonies were unanimous in remonstrating against this new mode of taxation, as hostile to the liberties of Englishmen, and an invasion of the charter rights, which had been granted to them, and which they had hitherto enjoyed.

The Assembly of Pennsylvania, entertaining this view of the subject, in common with all the other assemblies on the continent, instructed Dr. Franklin to use his efforts, in behalf of the province, to prevent the

passage of the act. The first steps he took for this object, as well as the origin of the measure itself, are briefly explained by him in a letter written some years afterwards to Mr. William Alexander. It is dated at Passy, March 12th, 1778.

"In the pamphlet you were so kind as to lend me, there is one important fact misstated, apparently from the writer's not having been furnished with good information; it is the transaction between Mr. Grenville and the colonies, wherein he understands, that Mr. Grenville demanded of them a specific sum, that they refused to grant any thing, and that it was on their refusal only, that he made the motion for the Stamp Act. No one of these particulars is true. The fact was this.

"Some time in the winter of 1763-4, Mr. Grenville called together the agents of the several colonies, and told them, that he proposed to draw a revenue from America, and to that end his intention was to levy a stamp duty on the colonies by act of Parliament in the ensuing session, of which he thought it fit that they should be immediately acquainted, that they might have time to consider, and, if any other duty equally productive would be more agreeable to them, they might let him know it. The agents were therefore directed to write this to their respective Assemblies, and communicate to him the answers they should receive; the agents wrote accordingly.

"I was a member in the Assembly of Pennsylvania when this notification came to hand. The observations there made upon it were, that the ancient, established, and regular method of drawing aids from the colonies was this. The occasion was always first considered by their sovereign in his privy council, by whose sage advice he directed his secretary of state

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