Benjamin Franklin Papers
Documents filtered by: Recipient="American Commissioners" AND Recipient="Franklin, Benjamin" AND Period="Revolutionary War"
sorted by: date (descending)

Francis Hopkinson to the American Commissioner or Commissioners, 19 November 1779

Francis Hopkinson to the American Commissioner or Commissioners4

ALS: American Philosophical Society

Philada. Novr. 19th. 1779

Gentlemen,

Since my last of Sept 8th5 the following Setts of Exchange have issued from my Office Vizt.

To the State of Connecticut

Doll
25 Setts 12 Doll. No. 1655–1679= 300
50 18 1658–1707= 900
50 24 1658–1707= 1200
 
100 30 1773–1872= 3000
100 36 1943–2042= 3600
10 300 582– 591= 3000
12,000

To the State of Rhode Island

Doll
50 Setts 24 Doll No. 1708–1757= 1200
50 30 1873–1922= 1500
50 36 2043–2167= 1800
4500

To the State of New York

Doll
25 Setts 12 Doll No 1680–1704= 300
25 18 1708–1732= 450
75 24 1758–1832= 1800
78 30 1923–2000= 2340
75 36 2093–2167= 2700
10 300 592–  601= 3000
5 600 280–  284= 3000
13,590

We have Reason to believe that the Continental Loan Office Bills Each have been counterfeited at New York.6 If any such should get to your Hands I hope you will be able to detect the Fraud by the Checks with which you are furnished. I have not yet seen any of those Counterfeits. As soon as it shall be in my Power I will give you an accurate Account of the Difference between the true & false Bills—

I have the Honour to be Your very hble serv

Fras Hopkinson Treas. of Loans

(No. 13)
(Quadruplicate)

Addressed: (On public service) / To The Honourable / The Commissioner or Commissioners / of the United States of America / at / Paris / To be sunk if in Danger of falling into the Hands of the Enemy / (Quadruplicate)

[Note numbering follows the Franklin Papers source.]

4For the past fourteen months Treasurer of Loans Hopkinson had been sending lists of valid loan office certificates to France so that counterfeit bills could be spotted: for examples see XXVII, 417–18; XXVIII, 68–9; XXIX, 49–50. His next list (87 sets from R.I. worth $5,850 and 35 sets from N.Y. worth $3,900) was sent on Jan. 14, 1780, to the same address; three ALS of it (marked “Original,” “Duplicate,” and “Triplicate”) are at the APS.

5Discussed in XXX, 299n.

6Elaborate measures were taken to prevent the counterfeiting of loan office certificates, such as printing them in various colors and with contrasting right-hand borders: William G. Anderson, The Price of Liberty: the Public Debt of the American Revolution (Charlottesville, Va., 1983), p. 7. It was a continuing problem, however, with both certificates and continental currency: JCC, XIII, 11; Fitzpatrick, Writings of Washington, XVII, 231.

Index Entries