Benjamin Franklin Papers

To Benjamin Franklin from Jonathan Williams, Sr., 3 April 1783

From Jonathan Williams, Sr.

ALS: American Philosophical Society

London apl. 3d. 1783

Hond sr

After a plesent Journey with a very agreeable Compainion (Mr Martin)5 I ariv’d Safe to this great City have taken lodgings in the Strand at John Reads No 394 Opposite Cecil street. If you or Mr Wm.6 Should have any Commands I Should be glad to Receive & Execute them. I have seen Messrs Vaughan Hodgson & Mr Laurence7 have Recd great Civilities from those Gentm. in Consequence of your kind Recommendations for Which I am much Obligd to you, doubtless you will have heard of the Settlement of the new ministry the Duke of Portland the first Lord of the Treasury Lord North & Mr Fox is in8 & I am told the Whol is Settled we may now expect the Definitve treaty will be finish’d & the Trade opened tho’ I Cant think it possible untill all the Kings troops are taken from America & New York free’d & that I am told is a Werk of time Some months at Least.

I Went yesterday to Kensington inquird after Mrs Hewson & found that Mrs. Stivenson was dead & She Moved into the Country—9 there is no new abrigment of the Comm Prayer Book1 an Atempt was made but did not Succed.— My Love to all you Love & belive me ever Your Dutyful Nephew

Jona Williams

Addressed: His Excellency Benjamin Franklin Esqr / Passy near / Paris

[Note numbering follows the Franklin Papers source.]

5Williams and James Martin left Paris early on the morning of March 22: Martin to JA, March 22, 1783 (Mass. Hist. Soc.).


7Williams probably carried BF’s March 20 letter to Henry Laurens, and his letter to Benjamin Vaughan of [c. March 21].

8Portland’s ministry (with North as home secretary and Fox as foreign secretary) took office on April 2: E. B. Fryde et al., eds., Handbook of British Chronology (3rd ed., London, 1986), pp. 114, 121, 123.

9Mary Hewson had moved to Kensington for her mother’s sake, but returned to Cheam after her mother’s death: XXXVII, 260; XXXVIII, 578–9; BF to Hewson, April 26, below.

1For BF’s earlier collaboration with Baron Le Despencer on the Abridgement of the Book of Common Prayer … (London, 1773) see XX, 343–52.

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