Benjamin Franklin Papers

From Benjamin Franklin to Sarah Davenport, [June 1730?]

To Sarah Davenport5

ALS: American Philosophical Society

[June? 1730]6

Dear Sister,

Your kind and affectionate Letter of May the 15th, was extreamly agreeable to me; and the more so, because I had not for two Years before, receiv’d a Line from any Relation, my Father and Mother only excepted. I am glad to hear your Family are got well thro’ the Small Pox, and that you have your Health continu’d to you. I sold your Husbands Watches for about £3 10s. this Money, and I now send him 3 Barrels of Flower (tho’ it be long first) which come to about the Money. I reckon my self very much oblig’d to him for not being more urgent with me. The Flower Brother John7 will deliver to him. Please to give my Respects to him, and excuse my not sending sooner. I am sorry to hear of Sister Macom’s Loss, and should be mighty glad of a Line from her; and from Sister Homes,8 who need be under no Apprehensions of not writing polite enough to such an unpolite Reader as I am; I think if Politeness is necessary to make Letters between Brothers and Sisters agreeable, there must be very little Love among ’em. I am not about to be married as you have heard. At present I am much hurryed in Business but hope to make a short Trip to Boston in the Spring. Please to let me know how Sister Douse9 is, and remember my kind Love to her, as also to Brother Peter,1 and Sister Lydia2 &c. Dear Sister, I love you tenderly, adieu.

B. Franklin

[Note numbering follows the Franklin Papers source.]

5Sarah Franklin (C. 12; 1699–1731), married May 3, 1722, James Davenport, baker and keeper of King’s Head Tavern, Boston. For further data on all the persons mentioned in this letter, see Genealogy.

6The date is indicated by “Sister Macom’s Loss,” which doubtless refers to the death of Jane Franklin Mecom’s first child, Josiah, May 18, 1730; and by the reference to BF’s unmarried state.

7John Franklin (C. 8; 1690–1756), a soap-boiler like his father, subsequently postmaster of Boston.

8Mary Franklin (C. 10; 1694–1731), married Robert Homes, mariner and captain of a ship plying between Boston and Philadelphia.

9Elizabeth Franklin (C. 1; 1677–1759), BF’s half-sister, married as her second husband, 1721, Richard Douse, shipmaster.

1Peter Franklin (C. 9; 1692–1766), merchant and shipmaster, subsequently postmaster of Philadelphia.

2Lydia Franklin (C. 16; 1708–1758), married Robert Scott, shipmaster, 1731.

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