Benjamin Franklin Papers

The American Commissioners to the Conde de Aranda, 28 December 1776

The American Commissioners to the Conde de Aranda3

ALS:4Archivo Historico Nacional; draft: Harvard University Library

Paris, Hotel d’Entragues, Dec. 28. 1776


We wish to inform your Excellency, that we are directed by the United States of America, to cultivate the Friendship of the Court of Spain, with that of France. For that purpose, as well as to pay our personal Respects to your Excellency, we purpose to wait upon you to-morrow, or on any other Day that will be more convenient, and at any Hour that your Excellency may be pleased to appoint.5We have the Honour to be, Your Excellency’s most obedient and most humble Servants

B Franklin
Silas Deane
Arthur Lee

Plenipotentiaries from the Congress of the United States of North America

His Excellency the Count d’Aranda Ambassador of Spain

[Note numbering follows the Franklin Papers source.]

3For the Spanish Ambassador see above, XXII, 468 n.

4In BF’s hand.

5A brief interview, chiefly concerned with privateers and prizes in Spanish ports, took place at the end of the month; see Aranda’s dispatch to Grimaldi of Jan. 13, 1777, in Juan F. Yela Utrilla, España ante la independencia de los Estados Unidos (2nd ed.; two vols., Lerida, 1925), II, 34–5. Another dispatch from the Ambassador of the same date describes a more significant interview on Jan. 4: below, Jan. 13.

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