Benjamin Franklin Papers

From Benjamin Franklin to Genet, 1 December 1778

To Genet

ALS: Library of Congress

Dec. 1, 1778


I sent some Boston Papers, (as late as the first of October,) last Week, to Mr Vergennes. I suppose you saw them. They contain particular Accounts of the great Harmony between Count D’Estaing’s Fleet & the People of the Country.9

I never heard of Gen. Washington’s writing such a Letter as you mention, and therefore I believe the Story to be false.1

I have the honour to be Sir Your most obedient humble Servant

B. Franklin

Addressed: A Monsr / Monsieur Genet / Chef du Bureau des Interpréts / Versailles

[Note numbering follows the Franklin Papers source.]

9One of the articles appeared in the Sept. 24 Independent Chronicle. It described d’Estaing’s public entry into Boston and his reception by the Mass. General Court, after which d’Estaing’s party and the Mass. Council dined with Gen. John Hancock. Vergennes forwarded the information to Genet and a translation of this article, as well as others from the Oct. 1 issue, appeared in the Affaires de l’Angleterre et de l’Amérique, vol. XII, part II, cahier LX, pp. cccxiii–cccxviii. This cahier bore the date of Nov. 27 but was published Dec. 5: see Genet’s reply of Dec. 4. We do not have a covering letter from BF to Vergennes. For another account of d’Estaing’s reception see Meng, Despatches of Gérard, pp. 327–8.

1See Genet’s letter of Nov. 21.

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