Benjamin Franklin Papers

From Benjamin Franklin to Humphry Marshall, 9 July 1769

To Humphry Marshall1

ALS: Mr. S. Hallock du Pont (1955)

London, July 9. 1769


I received your obliging Favour of April 13. with Specimens of the several Colours suitable for Painting which you have found in different Parts of our Country. It gives me great Pleasure to see them, and I have shown them to many Persons of Distinction, together with your Letter, which is allow’d to contain a great many sensible and shrewd Observations. There is at present an Appearance as if the Great Ones were about to change their Conduct towards us: I believe they begin to be a little sensible of their Error. It is perhaps too much to expect that they will become thoroughly wise at once. But a little Time, with a prudent steady Conduct on our side, will, I hope, set all right. I shall be oblig’d by a Continuance of your Correspondence, being, very respectfully, Sir, Your most obedient humble Servant

B Franklin

Mr Humphrey Marshall

Addressed: To / Mr Humphrey Marshall / West Bradford / Chester County / Pennsylvania / B Free Franklin

1Humphry Marshall (1722–1801), a cousin of John Bartram, was also a botanist. He corresponded with Peter Collinson until the latter’s death, and for Dr. John Fothergill he collected plants, birds’ eggs, and other specimens. In return Fothergill sent him books, a reflecting telescope, and through Franklin’s good offices a microscope and thermometer. DAB. Marshall’s letter to BF has not survived, but the tone of the latter’s reply suggests that their correspondence was just beginning; it continued actively for the next six years.

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