Benjamin Franklin Papers

To Benjamin Franklin from David Hartley, 11 May 1779

From David Hartley

Copy:7 American Philosophical Society; transcript: Library of Congress

Golden Square May 11 1779

My Dear Friend

Yours of May 4th. recd this moment. I cannot see the Commissioners of Sick & Hurt before tonights Mail, but I can equally give you an answr relating to the Prisoners because it was not longer ago than last night that one of the Commissioners calld upon me, in part to hear what was become of the Cartel Ship and anxious to proceed with the Exchange therefore without doubt you may proceed accordingly. The Commissioner, Mr Bell, who is a very well disposd person to forward the Exchange, suggested to me, to renew the application for the Exchange at Morlaix as much more expeditious.8 Your answer shall be immediately conveyd to the board of Sick & Hurt. If Morlaix should be chosen, I suppose a new passport would be necessary— Querry will a new passport be necessary if the second Exche. should be still at the same port as the first? I must conclude, not having this day a moment to spare. You will hear from me soon— On Nesbit fifteen Guineas, but never paid— On Vaughan twenty Guineas, wch I consider not as publick prisoners money, but private upon Your own Acct: therefore remains in my hand—9 All the other prisoners money has been expended a long while ago. I am Yrs &c. &c


Compliments from another quarter1

Notation: D.H. May 10. 1779.

[Note numbering follows the Franklin Papers source.]

7Possibly in the hand of Thomas Digges. Digges had just arrived in London, probably carrying BF’s May 4 letter. The two men were frequently in each other’s company in May and June working on both the prisoner exchange and the tentative peace negotiations that Hartley hoped to effect.

8Hartley had already asked BF to inquire about using Morlaix for future prisoner exchanges: XXVIII, 245–6, 321.

9Probably an answer to BF’s May 4 query about “two Small Bills.” For an earlier inquiry about bills on the bankers Nesbit and Vaughan see XXVI, 526, 539–40.

1Almost certainly Digges.

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