Benjamin Franklin Papers

From Benjamin Franklin to James Logan, 7 December 1747

To James Logan

MS not found; reprinted from Sparks, Works, VII, 28.

Monday Noon [December 7, 1747]9


I am heartily glad you approve of our proceedings. We shall have arms for the poor in the spring, and a number of battering cannon. The place for the batteries is not yet fixed; but it is generally thought that near Red Bank will be most suitable, as the enemy must there have natural difficulties to struggle with, besides the channel being narrow. The Dutch are as hearty as the English. “Plain Truth” and the “Association” are in their language,1 and their parsons encourage them. It is proposed to breed gunners by forming an artillery club, to go down weekly to the battery and exercise the great guns. The best engineers against Cape Breton were of such a club, tradesmen and shopkeepers of Boston. I was with them at the Castle at their exercise in 1743.2

I have not time to write larger nor to wait on you till next week. In general all goes well, and there is a surprising unanimity in all ranks. Near eight hundred have signed the Association, and more are signing hourly. One company of Dutch is complete. I am with great respect, Sir, &c.

B. Franklin

[Note numbering follows the Franklin Papers source.]

9Incorrectly dated December 4 by Sparks; that was a Friday in 1747.

1See above, p. 184, on the German translation of Plain Truth.

2The Massachusetts Assembly had authorized Governor Shirley to raise two companies of 60 men each “to be exerciz’d and disciplin’d in the use of the Great Artillery” at Castle William. They were the first troops trained to use “the Great Guns” in case of enemy attack. Shirley to the Lords of Trade, Jan. 30, 1743, Charles H. Lincoln, ed., Correspondence of William Shirley (N.Y., 1912), I, 100.

Index Entries