To Francis Bernard
ALS: The British Museum
Philada. Jan. 11. 1764
Having heard nothing from Virginia concerning your Son,3 I have at length thought the best and surest Way of bringing him safely here, will be to send from hence a sober trusty Person to conduct him up, who will attend him on the Road, &c. I have accordingly this Day agreed with Mr. Ennis,4 a very discreet Man, to make the Journey, who sets out to-morrow Morning. I shall send with him my own Horse for Mr. Bernard, and Money to bear his Expences; with a Letter to Mr. Johnson5 engaging to pay any Account he may have against your Son, or any reasonable Debts he may have contracted there. I hope this will be agreable to you, and answer the End. I am, with sincerest Respect Your Excellency’s most obedient and most humble Servant
Endorsed: Mr Franklin r Jan 21. 1764
3. While in New England in the summer of 1763 BF promised Mrs. Francis Bernard that he would look after her eldest son, Francis, if he should reach the vicinity of Philadelphia during his travels in America. Young Bernard turned up in Alexandria, Va., in the fall of the year and was stranded there without money. As he had promised, BF assumed responsibility for getting the young man home to his parents. See above, X, 353–4, 373, 389–91, 410–11.
4. James Ennis, Sr., and James Ennis, Jr., were both couriers in the service of the government of Pa. Autobiog. (APS-Yale edit.), 251, 280; 8 Pa. Arch., VI, 5054, 5065, 5151.
5. A lawyer of “Belvale,” near Alexandria, with whom young Bernard was staying. See above, X, 410 n.