British Prisoners of War to the Commissioners
Anoenie 22 Aug. 1778
This to inform your honouers we perisoners was Taken By Capt. Tucker Commander of the Boston was Sent on Shore the 3 Instant to Nantzs and from Nantzs to this town we humble beg Your Honouers to Grant us Lebertiy to Goe home for we have no mony and no Cridet here we have Dun Nothing amiss to our knowalage more then aney other Captains th[e]y all Gott there Liberty we humbley beg your honouers will be so Good as to order ours or order Some Supply as presoners of war Gentlemen if I Due not mistake all the Comanders of americca Vessalls have had there Liberty.1 We Are your Most Humble and obident Servents,
RC (PPAmP: Franklin Papers); addressed: “The Right Honourable Commissioniers of the United Coulnies of America at Paris”; stamped: “ANCENIS”; docketed, not by JA: “Prisoners Letter Ancenis 22 August 78.”
1. This letter serves as an example of petitions received by the Commissioners from British prisoners. George Finlay had commanded the John and Rebecca; Thomas Anquetil, the Elizabeth; and Allan, an unidentified Scottish brig. All were taken during the Boston’s short cruise in June. Brown Bencor remains unidentified. The fourth prize taken by Tucker during that expedition was the Britannia, commanded by William Baker (see Samuel Tucker to the Commissioners, 3 July, above; Philip Chadwick Foster Smith, Captain Samuel Tucker, Salem, 1976, p.104). The Commissioners apparently took no action in regard to this letter.