Benjamin Franklin Papers

John Bondfield to the American Commissioners, 10 August 1777

John Bondfield4 to the American Commissioners

ALS: American Philosophical Society

Bordeaux 10th Aug 1777


Having a small Sloop call’d the Mongomery Robt. Willis master, that I propose to send back to America Arm’d, not having a Commission for her which I apprehend lays in your power to grant, I take the Liberty to make application to you for One. I propose her to mount Six four pounders to carry thirty Men and otherways properly equipt. I am not determin’d if I shall employ the same master back. It may therefore be nessessary to have the Masters name in blank or with leave to indorse any other on the back. The property is all American including my Interest which I also regard the same tho’ I am at present settled in this City. To all such Rules, Obligations or Securities you are pleased to enjoin agreable to the usages I shall duely comply with. I had the honor to pay my respects to you at my Arrival from Philadelphia under date the 13th May last. I have two Vessels that will sail from hence direct for the Continent of America in fifteen Days. They are intended to make any harbour betwixt Cape May and Cape Hattaras. Any Commands you may chuse to transmit by their channel shall be duely attended to. I am respectfully your honors Most Obedient Humble Servant

John Bondfield

Paris Honble. Benj Franklin. Silas Dean. & Ar Lee Esqrs.

Addressed: To / The Honble. Doct. Benj. Franklin / un des Deputés du Congrés / a / Paris

[Note numbering follows the Franklin Papers source.]

4See above, XX, 225 n. Our conjecture there that he was a Bostonian was wrong; he was a Canadian merchant, who left Quebec in 1775 and the following February was in Montreal. Later that month he was in New York, and was in Philadelphia in July to testify before Congress; he subsequently settled in Bordeaux, where he remained for years. Justin H. Smith, Our Struggle for the Fourteenth Colony ... (2 vols.; N.Y. and London, 1907), II, 95; N.-Y. Hist. Soc. Coll., XI (1878), [399]; Lee Papers, I, 330; Smith, Letters, III, 347; Boyd, Jefferson Papers, I, 453–4; Ferguson, Morris Papers, II, 45–6.

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