Benjamin Franklin Papers

To Benjamin Franklin from Benjamin Vaughan, 21 September 1779

From Benjamin Vaughan

ALS: American Philosophical Society

London Septr. 21. 1779.

My dearest sir,

I beg the favor very particularly of you to give a letter of recommendation for Langford Lovell Esqr. (who gives the inclosed account of himself)9 addressed to the Govr. of Dominica. I should esteem it an addition to the favor, if you would yourself inclose a duplicate of such letter to Mr Lovel in Dominica, by some safe conveyance; as in such case, by means of the copy you convey & I convey, he will be in bad luck if he does not receive his recommendation safe. The family connections of this gentleman in the West Indies are considerable & respectable, and his friends here very amiable and such as I wish to oblige very much. He is a relation of Mr Richard Oliver.1 I am as ever, my dearest sir, yours most devotedly

Benjn. Vaughan

I beg the favor of the inclosed request being granted by the first opportunity.

I am very much distressed by not having M. Dupont’s table or map of the System of the Œconomistes, which you had the goodness to promise to procure for me. I could not get it myself, nor by any of the very various people I have made use of. I therefore again have recourse to you.2

Addressed: A Monsr. / Monsr. F.

Notation: Vaughn Sept: 21. 1779

[Note numbering follows the Franklin Papers source.]

9Lovell (1732–95) came from a Quaker merchant family of Philadelphia and Antigua: Vere Langford Oliver, The History of the Island of Antigua … (3 vols., London, 1894–99), II, 196. The enclosure was probably a letter of Lovell’s dated Antigua, June 11, 1779. He requests a recommendation for occasional travel to Dominica. Since the French conquest he has acted as a neutral, engaging in neither privateering nor military duties. APS.

1Lovell and the former alderman (XXII, 13n) were cousins. Lovell’s elder brother, Michael, was in partnership in a London merchant firm with another of their cousins, Thomas Oliver (to BF, Oct. 8, below): Oliver, The History of the Island …, II, 196; Kent’s Directory (London, 1779), p. 126. Vaughan had recommended the firm to JW on Dec. 5, 1778, as “a most solid house as a West Indian house.” In a letter to WTF of Feb. 2, 1779, he again pronounced it worthy of favor. Both letters are at the APS.

2Vaughan was referring to Pierre Samuel Du Pont de Nemours, Table raisonnée des principes de l’économie politique, a broadside originally published in Baden in 1775, and reissued in Paris in the spring of 1778. It was an expansion of Quesnay’s Tableau Œconomique (Versailles, 1758), which attempted to convey the physiocrats’ economic theory in tabular form. See Ambrose Saricks, Pierre Samuel Du Pont de Nemours (Lawrence, Kansas, 1965), pp. 29–30, 72, 366, 379. BF sent the Table to Vaughan on Nov. 9, recommending it as “an excellent thing.” APS.

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