Benjamin Franklin Papers
Documents filtered by: Author="Franklin, Benjamin" AND Recipient="Schweighauser, Jean-Daniel" AND Period="Revolutionary War" AND Correspondent="Franklin, Benjamin"
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From Benjamin Franklin to Schweighauser, 19 July 1780

To Schweighauser

AL (draft):6 American Philosophical Society; copy: Library of Congress

Passy, July 19. 1780.

In order to have the old arms,7 conveyed to America in the cheapest manner, I request you to have the Gun Barrells Locks Bayonnetts & Iron or brass furniture of them closely packed in small Cases so as to take up the least Room possible. The Cases may be the exact length of a Gun Barrell & being about a foot broad & deep they will contain as many as a man can easily manage, & thereby make convenient & handy ballast, which will be an inducement for Ships to take them on a reasonable freight. I do not think the Woodwork of the arms worth sending, as I understand the principal Part must be new Stocked which had better be done in America. Care must be taken to have the Barrells & Locks cleaned & oiled, at least so well as at their arrival they may not be in a worse condition than they now are, as this Operation does not require much Skill common Labourers will answer the purpose in case you cannot obtain armourers. In the Course of a month I may perhaps have an Opportunity of sending what you may then have ready and at about that time I shall be glad to know the quantity.

The arms already repaired if any remain unshipped, must go as they are.

Mr. Schweighauser.

[Note numbering follows the Franklin Papers source.]

6In JW’s hand. JW had been in Passy since the beginning of July (see our annotation of BF to Gardoqui & fils, July 4) and left on the evening of the 19th, arriving in Nantes late on July 21. (JW to French & Cie., July 22, Yale University Library; to BF, July 25, below.) BF probably used him as a secretary for drafting both this letter and the following one, which was written on the verso of this sheet.

7Muskets that the commissioners had bought in 1777; see XXIV, 100–1, XXVIII, 497–9, and for Schweighauser’s involvement, XXIX, 263. See also Rasquin’s letter of Sept. 12, below.

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