The American Commissioners to William Hamilton and John Welch5
AL (draft):6 Massachusetts Historical Society; two copies: National Archives
Passy Novr 11. 1778
We have received your Letters and wish it was in our Power to do more for officers in your Situation than We do, altho that amounts in the whole to a large Sum of Money. But as We have already lent you as much, as We have been able to lend7 to other officers of your Rank and in your Circumstances, we cannot, without a blameable Partiality lend you any more.8 We are, Gentlemen, your most obedient humble Servants.
Captain Hamilton and Lt Welch.
5. Welch (or Welsh) had been Capt. of Marines on the Alfred under Elisha Hinman, and Hamilton (Hambleton) had been Lt. of Marines on the same ship: Kaminkow, Mariners. John Gilbank wrote to the commissioners on Nov. 17 that he would forward this letter.
6. In JA’s hand, with interlineations, as noted below, by BF.
7. BF substituted “been able to lend” for JA’s “lent”; in the same sentence “we cannot” replaced “it is not in our Power”.
8. JA and BF had authorized the payment of 480 l.t. to Welch and 360 l.t. to Hamilton on Sept. 30, and BF had apparently accepted a draft from them both for 192 l.t. on Oct. 10: Taylor, Adams Papers, VI, 360.