Benjamin Franklin Papers

From Benjamin Franklin to John Adams, 17 December 1781

To John Adams

ALS: Massachusetts Historical Society; copy: Library of Congress

Passy, Dec. 17. 1781


I have received the Packet, containing the Correspondence relating to the Goods.3 I suppose that Mr Barclay is there before this time,4 and the Affair in a way of Accommodation. Young Mr Neufville is here; but I have thought it best not to give him as yet any Hopes of my Paying the Bills unless the Goods are delivered. I shall write fully by next Post. This serves chiefly to acquaint you that I will endeavour to pay the Bills that have been presented to you, drawn on Mr Laurens. But you terrify me, by acquainting me that there are yet a great Number behind. It is hard that I never had any Information sent me of the Sums drawn,5 a Line of Order to pay, nor a Syllable of Approbation for having paid any of the Bills drawn on Mr Laurens Mr Jay or yourself. As yet I do not see that I can go any farther, and therefore can engage for no more than you have mention’d. With great Esteem, I have the honour to be Sir, Your Excellency’s most obedient and most humble Servant

B Franklin

[Note numbering follows the Franklin Papers source.]

3JA’s letter of Dec. 8, above.

4He arrived on Dec. 20: Barclay to the President of Congress, Dec. 21 (National Archives).

5BF had not yet received Morris’ letter of Nov. 27, above, which provided such an estimate.

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