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AL : American Philosophical Society <On board the Boston , Port Louis, July 11, 1778: Jerome Cazneau, sergeant of marines, obtained shore leave and persuaded the other Frenchmen aboard to quit the ship. He did everything in his power to alienate them from returning to duty. The General, though under orders to assist us, gave them the choice of staying or quitting, even though he was reminded...
ALS : American Philosophical Society <Ancenie, August 22, 1778: We are prisoners taken by Capt. Tucker of the Boston . From Nantes we were sent to this town. We beg you to grant us liberty or supplies, since we have done nothing different from other captains who have been freed. Commanders of American vessels have gained their liberty.> Published as “British Prisoners of War to the...
ALS : National Archives This letter and the one that follows were the commissioners’ first word of an episode that bred controversy for years to come. The Chester , a sloop commanded by William Bray, sailed for the Netherlands the previous April from the Bay of Honduras, carrying produce of the Mosquito Coast. A British privateer stopped her, but let her go when Bray produced evidence that the...
LS : American Philosophical Society De jour en jour nous nous sommes flattés de recevoir reponce à la notre du 20 Novembre dernier, et nous ne savons à quoi attribuer ce Silence. Apres votre lettre satisfaisante nous n’avons pas hesités un seul moment de confier nos interets dans vos mains. Nous vous avons parlés sans le moindre deguisement, et nous vous repetons sur tout ce qu’il y a de plus...
DS : American Philosophical Society To their Excellencies the Ministers Plenipotentiary of the United States of America to the Court of France. The Memorial of the Captains of the American Merchant Vessells now at Nantes and the neighbouring Ports, Humbly Sheweth. That your Memorialist apprehend more Danger of Capture by the Enemy on this Coast, than in the whole passage beside. That as this...
ALS : American Philosophical Society We the under Subscribed Persons having Received Your kind favour of the 15 Inst: who are the only [Santuaries?] under God we Rely on, nor do we desire our liberty from other hands than yours; being in Reallity Americans, who are farr from Imposeing upon Your Clemency (or this Goverment) and willing to Stand or fall by our Countrys Cause, as we are well...
ALS : American Philosophical Society Messrs. Poreau & Mackinzy of this place haveing wrote a Letter to Doctor Franklin; in which they have atempted to injure Mr. Coffyns character, as I hope to be at Passy on Sunday next, beg it as a favor you’d suspend your Judgement till then, when I will lay before you every Particular that came to my Knowledge. I am with the greatest Respect Honorable...
ALS : American Philosophical Society; copy: Harvard University Library I had the honour of addressing You the 20th October last, the purport of which was to inform You of my situation at that time, and the treatment of a Certain Gentleman, to the Americans that are brought here— At present I beg leave to give You an exact relation of what has transpired in this place, respecting the said...
ALS : American Philosophical Society <Paris, June 14, 1778: I want to join the American Army and become a citizen. Although I am an Englishman I did not enter the King’s army, because it would have meant fighting my conscience; that army will probably become the instrument of despotism. In the United States, on the contrary, the disciplined soldier and the free citizen are compatible. I want...
ALS : American Philosophical Society <Amsterdam, October 27, 1778: I will sail for St. Eustatia next Wednesday or Thursday, as no direct passage for America is available. Had I been able I would have told you sooner, so you could send more dispatches. I doubt that Admiral d’Estaing is in the precarious situation reported by the English newspapers. American affairs provoke conflicting opinions...
ALS : American Philosophical Society <Passy, September 19, 1778: On Tuesday [September 22] I will leave for Holland and then for America. I would appreciate letters of recommendation to Congress, the Massachusetts Council and other assemblies or individuals. Had I the money myself or had I not exceeded the credit with Pliarne, Penet & Cie. given me by the Board of War in Boston, I would not...
ALS : American Philosophical Society <Bordeaux, July 29, 1778: I arrived yesterday in 26 days from Boston with a packet for you which ill health prevents me from delivering personally. Mr. Texier, a friend of Mr. Bondfield, has agreed to deliver it. I trust I shall soon recover and will be glad to serve in my capacity as captain in the continental navy. If not, I will await your orders. P.S....
ALS : American Philosophical Society La Reponse que me Raportent par le Courier de ce jour mes Banquiers et que vous leur aves fait a de quoy m’etonner. En vous faisant passer la lettre D’advis de votre representant a la Martinique Mr. Bingham, que Je trouvay dans Celle de Mr. J. Hurlot qui y est le mien, J’eus l’honneur de vous ecrire et de vous dire que je connoissois beaucoup M. Villiam...
ALS : American Philosophical Society Bancroft was beginning to find a spy’s life hard on the nerves. In July, worried because the British kept the originals of some letters he had stolen, he made new financial demands on them. By the beginning of August he was urging Wentworth to look after his interests, “which, till lately, he never shewed much anxiety about, and indeed seemed to be quite...
AD : American Philosophical Society This memorandum is the first account of the negotiations over tobacco that had been going on before Franklin’s arrival, and that were expected to play a crucial part in financing the war. No other American export was in such demand in France; if military supplies were to be traded for commodities, the only commodity available was tobacco. The committee of...
ALS : American Philosophical Society Je prens la liberté de vous adresser M. de Vic dont le fils M. de Bois Bertrand etoit passé en Amerique vers le mois de juin ou de juillet 1776 a la recommandation de M. Penet qui lui avoit fait esperer le grade de Lieutenant Colonel ou même de Colonel. Nous avons appris depuis qu’en arrivant au Continent ses services y furent agréés, mais qu’il fut pris...
ALS : American Philosophical Society <Paris, June 18, 1778, in French: If I did not respect your wisdom I should be astonished at your refusal to enlist all who want to fight the British. Precautions would have to be taken to ensure obedience, and this would require official cooperation in the ports in which the ships outfit and to which most of them return. The goal is worth the effort. The...
AD : American Philosophical Society M. D. propose a Messieurs F. D. et L. de leur faire des avances soit de draps, soit de fusils (du modele de 1763, controllés et tirés des propres magazins du Roy) pour la valeur de trois cent mille livres tournois, a condition que ces Messieurs lui fourniront en retour des tabacs de Virginie et de Mariland pour pareille somme, bien entendu que les achats...
AL : American Philosophical Society MM. Dubourg, Debout et Compagnie, ayant pris des engagemens pour fournir a la ferme generale vingt mille boucauts de tabac des crus de la Virginie et du Mariland, se proposent de porter de france dans les ports des Etats unis de l’Amerique des marchandises de fabrique françoise, pour rapporter en retour non seulement des tabacs, mais diverses autres denrées...
AL : American Philosophical Society Dubourg attendra vendredi 31e juillet Messrs. Franklin, Lée et Adams chez Esprit Libraire au Palais royal a deux heures precises, pour avoir l’honneur de les conduire en une maison du voisinage, ou on sera tres flatté de les recevoir. BF ’s old friend and former translator. This note was written on the verso of a letter from Genet of July 23 which, we are...
AL : American Philosophical Society Dubourg a l’honneur de souhaiter le bonjour a Monsieur Franklin, Monsieur Deane et Monsieur Lee; et les supplie d’accorder une audience favorable a M. Bayard qui a des objets importans a leur communiquer, et sur l’honneteté et la solidité duquel ils peuvent compter avec la plus parfaite assurance. Notation: Notes of no Consequence Bayard & Cie. was a...
ALS : American Philosophical Society <[Paris, after October 9, 1778]: A valuable whaling business has been established by the English since the onset of hostilities with America. If you intend to destroy it I could give you adequate intelligence. I was involved in this business but quit, aware that I was doing wrong. Fifteen whaling ships, manned primarily by Americans who would gladly return...
ALS : American Philosophical Society <[Paris], October 9, [1778]: For four years this humble petitioner, away from America, has been in English, though not in government, service. My only claim to supporting the American cause is the relief I have given to many prisoners. I want to serve by transporting goods to the rising American states, and request a pass from London to Spain for this...
Copy: American Philosophical Society M. Peltier duDoyer mon Correspondant de Nantes m’a fait signiffier une assignation à lui donnée en votre nom, aux fins de delivrer à votre Procureur, la foible cargaison de ris et d’indigo venue pour moi de Charlestown, sur le Navire la Thérese que Mr. Peltier a vendue par mon ordre et dont il m’a fait passer les fonds. Surpris de cette attaque, j’ai chargé...
Copy: Archives du Ministère des affaires étrangères Je recois, Messieurs, une Lettre de Messieurs Bérard freres de Lorient qui me confirme que vous leur avez donné des ordres positifs et réitérés de vendre la cargaison de l’amphitrite et de n’en remettre les fonds qu’à vous seuls. Ma situation souffrante ne me permet pas d’entrer dans de grands détails, mais cette cargaison m’appartient et je...
ALS : American Philosophical Society I sailed from Philad. the 6 of Sept. I Recd. no Letters from the Committe of Congress. The privet Letters I Recd. from Mr. Deane and the Honbl. Richard Henery Lee & Mr. Carmichell as to the dispatches for the Court of France I Recd. them from Monsr. Gerard as to Aney Other Letters I Recd. non— Gentln. I shall Sail Shortly for Philad. If you have Aney...
ALS : Massachusetts Historical Society <Passy, April 17, 1778: I was captured at sea last January en route from Baltimore to Charleston, and imprisoned in England until the Admiralty released me; I then came here needing assistance. You will, I hope, lend me fifteen guineas, which I will repay on my return to America. > Published in Taylor, Adams Papers , VI , 37. Belton had been experimenting...
Copy: American Philosophical Society <[Amsterdam, September 23, 1778], in French: The undersigned, counsellor pensionary of Amsterdam, informs the commissioners that the burgomasters of the city authorize the following declaration: assuming Congress will not enter into any agreement with the English commissioners that would be harmful or prejudicial to Dutch trade in Europe either directly or...
ALS : American Philosophical Society <Brest, September 4, 1778, in French: In accordance with your request of August 15, Thomas Wilkinson left yesterday for St. Pol de Léon. I await your orders regarding the prisoners here.> Published in Taylor, Adams Papers , VII .
ALS and AL : American Philosophical Society I have been prevented from having the honor of writing to you for some considerable time past, as an Embargo has been laid upon all Shipping bound to Europe, in Consequence of some Dispatches, which the General received from France. I vainly hoped that it would be a Forerunner to a Commencement of Hostilities, but it is now taken off; and there seems...
ALS : American Philosophical Society I have the honor to inform You that the Count D’Estaing arrived here with the Fleet under his Command the Beginning of last Month. Admiral Byron, with 14 Ships of the Line, had been cruizing off Boston Harbor, watching the Motions of the French Fleet; but, the Day previous to its Departure, a violent Storm arose, which cast the Somerset ashore on Cape Cod,...
ALS : Connecticut Historical Society; AL : American Philosophical Society By a Sloop of War Sailing this Evening for Brest, I have only Time to communicate to you the important News that has been received to Day by a Vessel which Sailed from Salem the beginning of July and brings a Gazette of the 3d of that Month which mentions, that Gen. Howe after having made a Junction of Some of his Troops...
Two ALS : American Philosophical Society The arrival at this place of the Continental Frigate the Deane, & the armed Brigantine the General Gates, in order to be careened & refitted, & to procure a fresh Supply of Provisions, has greatly embarrassed me, not having sufficient Funds to answer their Demands. I am therefore under the Necessity of refusing them the necessary Supplies, or of...
Copy: Connecticut Historical Society Above is Copy of my last Respects, since which have received none of your esteemed favors. The Subject which I alluded to in my last, is in regard to the Sale of our Produce, which the French Merchants at present absolutely refuse to purchase for the European Market; as many of their Vessels have been already visited, and American Produce which has been...
ALS : Connecticut Historical Society Herewith is Copy of my last Respects; Since which have received very little News from America. A Letter from Mr. Morris of March 1st mentions, “that on Sunday last, there was a smart Skirmish between a considerable Body of the Enemy, and a Party of our Troops near Brunswic; Our Loss was inconsiderable, but not so with them; they lost a great many Men, both...
ALS and AL : American Philosophical Society <St. Pierre, Martinique, May 29, 1778: I have written Congress for permission to draw on you; if I do not hear I shall have to draw for 100,000 livres to honor my commitments. Congress owes me much more, but if I receive payment in goods I shall be hard put to it to dispose of them; the likelihood of war has virtually stopped trade here. I must...
ALS : American Philosophical Society By the eleventh Article of the Treaty of Commerce entered into betwixt His Most Christian Majesty & the United States of America, the Americans are exempted from the Payment of all Duties on the Article of Molasses, notwithstanding which the Duties have, until now, been constantly exacted & paid. This has occasioned great Clamours on the Part of the...
Two ALS : American Philosophical Society I have herewith the honor to convey to you Copy of my last Respects. You have doubtless heard of the glorious Success of the Army under General Gates, upon which I sincerely congratulate you and all the Friends of America. Betwixt the Date of the Gazettes which I had the honor to enclose you, and the 15 October, there were four Engagements, by the last...
ALS : American Philosophical Society Not being favor’d with any of your Dispatches since the Arrival of Doctr. Franklin (except a few Lines under Date of the 7 June) I have become very apprehensive of the Fate of the many Letters that I have from Time to Time done myself the honor of writing, and which have generally been addressed under Cover to Messrs. Delaps at Bordeaux. Your not...
ALS : Connecticut Historical Society Herewith you will please to find Triplicate and Copy of my two last Letters to Mr. Deane; but as they are addressed to him in an official Capacity, I have thought proper to place them under your Notice, and shall in future do myself the honor of directing my Letters in the like manner, as I am informed by my last Dispatches from Congress, that you are...
ALS : American Philosophical Society <St. Pierre, Martinique, June 16, 1778: The General has been informed of the Franco-American treaty of alliance and commerce. If it changes the political or commercial system or relations with foreign powers, or binds the contracting parties to act in concert, I should know its terms so that in my small way I can co-operate as the American agent in the West...
Two LS : American Philosophical Society Suivant Les Intentions Du Congrès j’ay L’honneur De Vous Donner avis que j’ay faits Traitte ce jour sur vous ordre De Monsieur aubin Bellevue Pour la somme De Mil Livres Tournois Payable a Trois Mois De Vue que je vous Prie D’avoir La bonté D’accueillir favorablement et en passer le Montant a L’acompte Des Etats unis De L’amerique. J’ay L’honneur D’etre...
ALS : American Philosophical Society A glaring Act of Injustice has been done to some American Seamen in this place, which calls aloud for Redress & Retribution.— These unfortunate Men, to the Number of 18, had been carried Prisoners into Great Britain, &, having escaped from their Confinement, repaired to Plymouth, where a Number of armed Cruizers were fitting out.— They entered into the...
ALS : American Philosophical Society Above is Copy of what I had the honor of writing you the 11th Ulto. Want of Opportunities has been the Cause of my not forwarding to you some important News which I received some Time ago from St. Eustatia. You will please to find inclosed Copy of a Letter from a French Gentleman in that Place, with the Translation of some Extracts from American Gazettes,...
ALS : American Philosophical Society A Singular Omission on the part of the Minister has been the Cause that several Articles of the Treaty of Commerce entered into betwixt his most Christian Majesty & the United States of America, & operating to the Advantage of the American Commerce, have not been enforced here—the General not having as yet received a Copy of the Treaty with Orders for the...
ALS : Connecticut Historical Society Above is Copy of my last Respects, and am still without any of your esteemed Favors. The last Accounts from America were of the 26 April, by which I find the Operations of the Army had not as yet commenced; but it was expected every Day that the Campaign would open. By an Extract of a Letter from Genl. Washington to the Congress, there is reason to believe...
Copy: National Archives Being informd that some malicious person, or persons, have been, and are still endeavoring, by the most infamous means, to deprive Mr. J. D. Schweighauser of his good name, and being apprehensive that the intention is to prejudice him in the estimation of the Honorable Commissioners, we think it an act of Justice due to injurd Merit, to acquaint you, that we have...
ALS : American Philosophical Society Mr. Boylau prie Messiers Dean franklin de faire remettre au porteur l’echantillon d’habit fusils sabre bonet &c, &c. qu’il a laissé chez eux. Il obligeront leurs tres humble Serviteur Donner au porteur si il vous plait toutte les choses apertenant a monseur Boileau. Addressed: A Messieurs / Messirs Dean & franklin / Equrs / a lhotel dHambourg / rue Jacob...
ADS : Archives du Ministère des affaires étrangères, Harvard University Library; copies: University of Virginia Library, National Archives <September 5, 1778, in the third person, in French: At the beginning of May, 1776, Dubourg and Penet asked him to join the U.S. army; he was then a lieutenant colonel in the French cavalry. He would carry dispatches about the ministry’s attitude toward the...
(I) and (II) ALS : American Philosophical Society I have just time in Compliance to Mr. Livingstons request to write your honors that an offer has been made him of a vessel to be compleatly fitted and armed provided your Honors will grant a Commission. His desires in this appears to spring from the advance it would give him of rank at his Arrival in America. If this should meet your...