Thomas Morris to the American Commissioners
ALS: Connecticut Historical Society
Nantes. January 14th. 1777
I embrace this opportunity of Captain Nicholsons return to Paris to acquaint you with my arrival here yesterday about four O’Clock in the afternoon. Mr. Penet having some bussiness at Orleans, detained us at that place a few hours, which together with the badness of the roads rendered it impossible for us to make greater dispatch than we did.3I have now the pleasure to acquaint you that best part of the Tobacco is disposed of at a price that will neat [net] about 13 Sous per lb. Two of the Ships are near ready to take onboard their return Cargoes which are now in store waiting. I expect one of them the Success Captain Anderson will be dispatched in 10 days from this date, for your government in preparing any Papers you may have to send to America. Captain Wickes has been at Port L’Orient and will write you fully with respect to the Ships you desired him to examine there, and an Inventory of the 36 Gun Frigate will be sent to Paris, and as Captain Nicholson will be on the Spot, he can form a judgement of the situation that Ships in, and what may be still necessary provided you determine to purchase her.4I shoud be glad to know your sentiments with respect to any prizes that may be sent into any of the French Ports by American Privateers, and wether you are of oppinion they will meet the protection of the Court of France. I shall keep you regularly advised of every occurrence here, and in the mean time remain with much respect Gentlemen Your most Obedient Servant
PS. As Captain Nicholson does not go to L’Orient the letters for Mr. Bromfield5 will be sent to him by Express this forenoon.
Benjn. Franklyn, Silas Deane & Arthur Lee Esqrs. Paris
Addressed: To / The Honble. Benjn: Franklin Esqr. / at / Paris
Notation: Nantes Jany 14th 1777 Letter from Thos. Morris Esqr
3. For Samuel Nicholson, an old friend of Wickes who had received his naval commission a month before, see the following letter and the DAB. Penet was returning from Paris, where he had gone with BF; Morris was taking up his post at Nantes as agent for the secret committee.
4. A description of the frigate, in French, is among BF’s papers in the APS, and is printed in translation in Naval Docs., VIII, 526 n.
5. Thomas Bromfield, the Boston merchant who had recently come to France from England, and was about to sail home with a cargo: above, XXI, 157 n; XXII, 161 n.