Benjamin Franklin Papers
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D’Acosta frères to Franklin and John Adams, 12 December 1778

D’Acosta frères to Franklin and John Adams

ALS: American Philosophical Society

Nantes le 12 xbre. 1778./.

Messieurs

Nous avons l’honneur de vous adresser copie de la lettre que M. Arthur Lée nous a ecrite en date du 28–9bre. & do. la Reponse que nous y avons faite.8

Ce n’est pas pour nous plaindre à vous de votre confrere; que nous prenons la liberté de vous envoyer9 ces copies mais uniquement pour parer aux impressions défavorables que son injuste prévention pourroit vous donner contre nous.

Nous Sommes avec respect, Messieurs, Vos très-humbles & très-obeissants Serviteurs.

D’acosta FRERES

MM. Franklin & Adams.

Nous addressons La presente a notre frere qui est a Paris logé a l’hotel de henry quatre rue platriere, pour vous la faire paser a Passi.

Endorsed by Franklin: Lettres entre M Lee & Messrs D’acosta

[Note numbering follows the Franklin Papers source.]

8Penet, d’Acosta Frères had sold arms to Arthur Lee for Virginia: XXVII, 386n. Lee wrote them on Nov. 29 and included a copy of his Aug. 4 letter introducing Le Maire. The November letter was bristling with invectives: the firm had promised the goods by the end of September, and Lee had not yet seen a single article; the inexcusable delay had caused the state of Virginia to miss a favorable shipping opportunity. Lee demanded that the firm pay all damages. The firm’s answer, dated Dec. 12, caustically challenged Lee’s honesty, upheld their own, and argued that the articles were being manufactured as quickly as the workers could possibly produce them. Finally, they offered the use of their own ship, the Courier de l’Europe, to transport the goods.

9We have removed a colon after “envoyer” and converted the “c” in “ces” to lower case.

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