Benjamin Franklin Papers
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To Benjamin Franklin from Jonathan Williams, Jr., 1 February 1780

From Jonathan Williams, Jr.

ALS: University of Pennsylvania Library; copy: Yale University Library

Nantes Feb 1. 1780.

Dear & honoured Sir.

The last Post from Bordeaux brought me my Letters from america brought by Mr Adams and among them I recvd one for you which you have inclosed. I likewise inclose you a Letter from Capt Manly who is now in Mill Prison, it is addressed to Mr William Bradford but that Gentleman being now in america & having desired me at his Departure to open all Letters to his address, I opened this from Capt Manly; I shall in answer assure him that the Exchange is not neglected & that he will have his Turn. He is a brave Officer & deserves attention.3

M de Chaumont has directed me to draw on him for Funds which I suppose you know and approve.4 Among the Furniture I found no mention of Buckles which I suppose to be an Omission5 & am therefore laying out for 15000 Pair conformable to the Congress Order.

I hope Mr Adams will soon be with you, when he arrives please to present my Respects to him. I am ever most dutifully and affectionately Yours

J Williams J

Notation: J Williams Feb 1 1780

[Note numbering follows the Franklin Papers source.]

3Thomas Digges had already written to BF about John Manley on Jan. 28 (above). Manley and JW occasionally corresponded until the captain’s release in 1781.

4JW’s first bill drawn on Chaumont was dated Feb. 1. All in all, he drew two hundred and fifty-three bills over the next six months. The list is identified above as part of XXIV in the Editorial Note on Accounts.

5An undated memo by Chaumont entitled, “Etat d’habillement pour 15 mils hommes,” seems to be a sketchy list of JW’s instructions, and did not mention buckles. One complete set of clothing included 2 shirts, 2 pairs of hose, 1 waistcoat and pair of breeches (together called a habit), 2 pairs of socks, 1 hat, and 1 pair of gaiters. The price of the whole order was estimated at 915,000 l.t.; transportation costs to Boston brought the total to 1,000,000 l.t. University of Pa. Library.

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