To Benjamin Franklin
New York July [c.30] 1776
Within these few days I have been favour’d with two Letters from you—the first cover’d one to Lord Howe which with equal confidence I should have sent locked under a Seal—the only difference is, that I have had an oppertunity of perusing Sentiments which cannot but be admired—the Second, recommending the scheme of [ ] to whom I have given every aid in my power to bring his project to maturity.1
Your Letter to Lord Howe is gone to him, & I have the honour to be with great esteem & regard Sir Yr Most Obedt & Most Hble Servt
ALS (facsimile), sold by Sotheby, Parke-Bernet, New York, catalog 4481M, item 273, 24 Nov. 1980. Although the day of the month is left blank in the dateline of the ALS, this letter apparently was written on or soon after 30 July, the date that Franklin’s letter to Lord Howe of 20 July was delivered to Howe aboard his flagship the Eagle (see the second paragraph of this letter and William Palfrey to Hancock, 31 July, in MH: Jared Sparks Collection).
1. Franklin’s letter to GW covering his letter to Lord Howe of 20 July has not been found. For the text of the latter letter, in which Franklin rebuts Howe’s proposals for reconciliation, see Willcox, Franklin Papers description begins William B. Willcox et al., eds. The Papers of Benjamin Franklin. 40 vols. to date. New Haven, 1959—. description ends , 22:518–21. Joseph Belton’s scheme for building a submersible vessel is recommended in Franklin’s letter to GW of 22 July.