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appears a little prolix; and a disposition to postpone the consideration even of the things they know they must at last consider, that so they may have time for what more immediately concerns them, and withal enjoy their amusements, and be undisturbed in the universal dissipation. In other respects, though some of the great regard us with a jealous eye, and some are angry with us, the majority of the nation rather wish us well, and have no desire to infringe our liberties. And many console themselves under the apprehension of declining liberty here, that they or their posterity shall be able to find her safe and vigorous in America. With sincere and great esteem, 1 am, &c. . B. Franklin.
Lord North,—met him at Lord Le Despencer's—Lord
Dear Son, London, July 14,1773.
I am glad to find by yours of May 4, that you have been able to assist Josiah Davenport a little; but vexed that he and you should think of putting me upon a solicitation which it is impossible for me to engage in. I am not upon terms with Lord North to ask any such favor from him. Displeased with something he said relating to America, 1 have never been at his levees, since the first. Perhaps he has taken that amiss. For last week we met occasionally at Lord Le Despencer's in our return from Oxford, where I had been to attend the solemnity of his installation, and he seemed studiously to avoid speaking to me. I ought to be ashamed to say that on such occasions I feel myself to be as proud as any body. His lady indeed was more gracious, She came, and sat down by me on the same sofa, and condescended to enter into a coversation with me agreeably enough, as if to make some amends. Their son and daughter were with them. They staid all night, so that we dined, supped, and breakfasted together, without exchanging three sentences. But had he ever so great a regard for me, I could not ask that office, trifling as it is, for any relation of mine. And detesting as I do the whole system of American customs, believing they will one day bring on a breach through the indiscretion and insolence of those concerned in the collection, I should never wish to see one so near to me in that business. If you think him capable of acting as deputy secretary, I imagine you might easily obtain that for him of Mr. Morgan. He has lately been with me, is always very complaisant, and understanding 1 was about returning to America, requested my interest to obtain for him the agency for your province. His friend Sir Watkin Lewes, who was formerly candidate for the same great place, is now high sheriff of London, and in the way of being lord mayor. The new sheriffs elect are (could you think it f) both Americans, viz. Mr. Sayre, the New Yorker, and Mr. W. Lee, brother to Dr. Lee. 1 am glad you stand so well with Lord Dartmouth. I am likewise well with him; but he never spoke to me of augmenting your salary. He is truly a good man, i and wishes sincerely a good understanding with the colonies, but does not seem to have strength equal to his wishes. Between you and me, the late measures have been, 1 suspect, very much the king's own, and be has in some cases a great share of what his friends call firmness. Yet by some pains-taking and proper management, the wrong, impressions he has received may be removed, which is perhaps the only chance America has for obtaining soon thejMr dresses she aims at. This entirely to yourself. . ;iC,■n\uzu
And now we are among great folks, let me tell you a little of Lord Hillsborough. I went down to Oxford, with and at the instance of Lord Le Despencer, who is on all occasions very good to me, and seems of late very desirous of my company. Mr- Todd too was there, who has some attachment to Lord H., and in a walk we were taking told me aa a secret that Lord H. was much chagrined at being out of place, and could never forgive me for" writing that pamphlet against his report about the Ohio. I assured him, said Mr. T. that I knew you did not write it; and the consequence is, that he thinks I know the contrary, and wanted to impose upon him in your favor; and so I find he is now displeased with me, and for no other cause in the world. His friend Bamber Gascoin too, says that they well knew it was written by Dr. F. who was one of the most mischievous men in England." That same day Lord H. called upon Lord Le D. whose chamber and mine were together in Queen's College. I was in the inner room shifting, and heard his voice, but did not see him, as he went down stairs immediately with Lord Le D. who mentioning that I was above, he returned directly, and came to me in the pleasantest manner imaginable. "Dr. F.," said he, " I did not know till this minute that you were here, and I am come back, to make you my bow. I am glad to see you at Oxford, and that you look so well, &c." In return for this extravagance I complimented him on his son's performance on the theatre, though indeed it was but indifferent; so that account was settled. For as people say when they are angry, if he strikes me, I'll strike him again, I think sometimes it may be right to say, if he flatters me, I'll flatter him again. This is lex talionis, returning offences in kind. His son however (Lord Fairford) is a valuable young man, and his daughters, Ladies Mary and Charlotte, most amiable young wotoen. My quarrel is only with him, who of all the men I ever met with is surely the most unequal in his treatment of people, the most insincere, and the most wrong headed; witness besides his various behavior to me, his duplicity in encouraging us to ask for more land: ask for enough to make a province, (when we at first asked only for 2,500,000 acres,) were his words; pretending to befriend our application, then doing every thing to defeat it, and reconciling the first to the last by saying to a friend, that he meant to defeat it from the beginning; and that his putting us upon asking so much was with that very view, supposing it too much to be granted. Thus by the way, his mortification becomes double. He has served us by the very means he meant to destroy us, and tript up his own heels into the bargain. Your affectionate father, B.franklin.
To Mr. Winthrop, Boston.
Dear Sir, London, July 25, 1773.
I am glad to see that you are elected into the council, and are about to take part in Our public affairs. Your abilities, integrity, and sober attachment to the liberties of our country, will be of great use in this tempestuous time, in conducting our little bark into safe harbor. By the Boston newspapers, there seems to be among us some violent spirits, who are for an immediate rupture. But I trust the general prudence of our countrymen will see, that by our growing strength we advance fast to a situation in which our claims must be allowed; that by a premature struggle we may be crippled and kept down another age; that as between friends every affront is not worth a duel, between nations every injury is not worth a war, so between the governed and governing every mistake in government, every encroachment on right is not worth a rebellion. It is in my opinion sufficient for the present that we hold them forth on all occasions, not giving up any of them, using at the same time every means to make them generally understood and valued by the people 4 cultivating a harmony among the colonies, that their union in the same sentiments may give them greater weight: remembering withal, that this protestant country, (our mo* ther, though lately an unkind one) is worth preserving, and that her weight in the scale of Europe, and her safety in a great degree may depend on our union with her. Thus conducting, - I am confident we may in a few years obtain every allowance of, and every security for, our inestimable privileges, that we can wish or desire. With great and sincere esteem, I am, i. B.franklin.
To The Hon. Thomas Cushing, Esq.
Printing of General Hutchinson's letters.
Sir, London, July 25, 1773.
I am Favored with yours of June 14 and 16, containing some copies of the resolves of the committee upon the letters.1 I see by your account of the transaction, that you could not well prevent what was done. As to the report of other copies being come from England, I know that could not be. It was expedient to disengage the house. I hope the possession of the originals, and the proceedings upon them, will be attended with salutary effects to the province, and then I shall be well pleased. .
I observe that you mention that no person besides Dr. Cooper and one of the committee knew they came from me. I did not accompany them with any request of being myself concealed; for believing what I did to be in the way of my duty as agent, though I had no doubt of its giving offence,
• Governor Hutchinson's. VOL. I. 2 A