Abbildungen der Seite
PDF
EPUB

usual articles of commerce, as far as they have occasion for them; it is owing merely to there being too many traders, who have crowded hither from all parts of Europe with more goods than the natural demand of the country requires. And what in Europe is called the debt of America, is chiefly the debt to these adventurers and supercargoes to their principals, with which the settled inhabitants of America, who never paid better for what they want and buy, have nothing to do. As to the contentment of the inhabitants with the change of government, methinks a stronger proof cannot be desired, than what they have given in my reception. You know the part I had in that change, and you see in the papers the addresses from all ranks with which your friend was welcomed home, and the sentiments they contain confirmed yesterday in the choice of him for President by the Council and new Assembly, which was unanimous, a single voice in seventy-seven excepted.

I remember you used to wish for newspapers from America. Herewith I send a few, and you shall be regularly supplied, if you can put me in a way of sending them, so as that you may not be obliged to pay postage. With unchangeable esteem and respect I am, my dear friend, yours most affectionately,

B. Franklin.

TO MRS. MART HEWSON.

Philadelphia, 30 October, 1785.

I received my dear friend's letter of July 23d, at Southampton, where I arrived the 24th, and stayed till the 28th. I believe I acquainted you by a line, immediately after my arrival here, that we had a pleasant, and not a long passage, in which there was but the interests of that nation, and that your advanced age may not prevent you from strengthening, and perfecting, and placing upon an eternal foundation by wise laws, the work achieved by a just indignation and by valor. I have the honor to subscribe myself in sincerity, Sir, your most devoted and obedient servant,

Gaetano Filangieri.

TO DAVID HARTLEY.

Slate of America.

Philadelphia, 27 October, 1785.

Dear Sir,

I received at Havre de Grace six copies of your print, which I have brought with me hither. I shall frame and keep one of them in my best room. I shall send one to Mr. Jay, and give the others among some friends who esteem and respect you as we do

Your newspapers are filled with accounts of distresses and miseries, that these States are plunged into since their separation from Britain. You may believe me when I tell you, that there is no truth in those accounts. I find all property in lands and houses augmented vastly in value; that of houses in towns at least fourfold. The crops have been plentiful, and yet the produce sells high, to the great profit of the farmer. At the same time, all imported goods sell at low rates, some cheaper than the first cost. Working people have plenty of employ and high pay for their labor.

These appear to me as certain signs of public prosperity. Some traders, indeed, complain that trade is dead; but this pretended evil is not an effect of inability in the people to buy, pay for, and consume the usual articles of commerce, as far as they have occasion for them; it is owing merely to there being too many traders, who have crowded hither from all parts of Europe with more goods than the natural demand of the country requires. And what i n Europe is called the debt of America, is chiefly the debt to these adventurers and supercargoes to their principals, with which the settled inhabitants of America, who never paid better for what they want and buy, have nothing to do. As to the contentment of the inhabitants with the change of government, methinks a stronger proof cannot be desired, than what they have given in my reception. You know the part I had in that change, and you see in the papers the addresses from all ranks with which your friend was welcomed home, and the sentiments they contain confirmed yesterday in the choice of him for President by the Council and new Assembly, which was unanimous, a single voice in seventy-seven excepted.

I remember you used to wish for newspapers from America. Herewith I send a few, and you shall be regularly supplied, if you can put me in a way of sending them, so as that you may not be obliged to pay postage. With unchangeable esteem and respect I am, my dear friend, yours most affectionately,

B. Franklin.

TO MRS. MART HEWSON.

Philadelphia, 90 October, 1785.

I received my dear friend's letter of July 23d, at Southampton, where I arrived the 24 th, and stayed till the 28th. I believe I acquainted you by a line, immediately after my arrival here, that we had a pleasant, and not a long passage, in which there was but one day, a day of violent storm, in which I was glad you were not with us. I had the happiness of finding my family well, and of being very kindly received by my country folks.

I say nothing to persuade your coming, because I said in a former letter, I would leave you entirely to your own judgment, which is very good. I would only mention the fact, that, on inquiry I am informed the usual apprentice-fee to a mercantile house of eminence, is from one hundred to one hundred and fifty pounds sterling. I am plunged again into public business, as deep as ever; and can now only add my love to the dear children, in which this family all join. Temple is just gone to look at his lands, and Ben is at college to complete his studies. I am ever, my dear friend, yours most affectionately,

B. Franklin.

FROM RICHARD PRICE TO B. FRANKLIN.

Newington Green, 5 November, 1785.

Dear Friend,

I heard a few days ago with particular pleasure of your safe arrival at Philadelphia, and of the joy with which you were received there. We had been alarmed here by accounts in the public papers of your being taken by an Algerine pirate, and carried into slavery. I was so foolish as to believe this account, when I first read it; but a little inquiry and consideration soon convinced me, that the distress it gave me was groundless. May you still live to be happy in the respect and gratitude of your country, and to bless it by your counsel. It was a mortification to me, that I could not make one of the friends, who had the pleasure of being with you at Southampton. I return you many thanks for the kind lines you sent me from thence. They gave me great pleasure.

I received some time ago from Mr. Vaughan a diploma, constituting me a member of the Philosophical Society at Philadelphia. Will you be so good as to convey to the President and other members of the Society, in whatever manner you may think proper, my very grateful acknowledgments? I cannot but be impressed by the honors they have done me, and I hope they will accept my wishes of their increasing credit and prosperity, to which, were it in my power, I should be glad to contribute.

I am sorry for the hostile aspect of affairs between this country and yours. The general cry during the war was, that the colonies were too important to be given up, and that our essential interests depended on keeping them. It seems now to be discovered among us, that they are of no use to us; and the issue may be, that we shall lose the trade and friendship of an increasing world, and throw it into the scale of France. Our restraints, however, will do good to the United States, should their effect be to oblige them to strengthen their federal government, to check theirx*age for trade, and to render them more independent, by causing them to find all they want within themselves.

Should you happen to see Mr. Vaughan, or any of his family, deliver my kind compliments to them. With every respectful sentiment, and the most affectionate regard, I am ever yours,

Richard Price.

« ZurückWeiter »