Benjamin Franklin Papers

From Benjamin Franklin to Delleville, 15 April 1780

To Delleville

Copy: Library of Congress

Passy, April 15. 1778, i.e., 1780


I received the Letter you did me the honour of writing to me the 10th. Instant, relating to the seven Americans who had Escaped in a boat from England, and arriv’d on your Coast. I beg you to accept my thankful Acknowledgements for the hospitality you have shown them—. I hope they will be allow’d to sell the Boat to furnish themselves with necessaries. Monseigneur l’amiral has always been so good as to permit such application of the property. If more should be wanting to enable them to travel to Brest, in order to obtain a Passage thence to America. I beg you would furnish them therewith, and I will immediately reimburse you by paying your Draft upon sight.2 With great Respect I have the honour to be sir

Mr. Philippe De Delleville Lieut General de l’Amirauté a Bayeux.

[Note numbering follows the Franklin Papers source.]

2Delleville replied on May 5. He confirms that the government allowed the sale of the rowboat in which the seven escaped from Portsmouth. He is sending the proceeds, 68 l.t., to his colleague at Nantes, who will remit that sum to the Americans. To enable the seven men to travel to Nantes more comfortably and to provide for their future needs, he has supplemented what the commissaire of the French navy furnished them, the same amount the King provides his own subjects in similar circumstances. Remuneration is not necessary; his expenditure should be considered proof of the devotion the French feel towards the Americans and their cause. APS.

Index Entries