Benjamin Franklin Papers

From Benjamin Franklin to William Strahan, 29 July 1747

To William Strahan

MS not found;9 reprinted from The Atlantic Monthly, LXI (1888), 26.

Philada. July 29. 1747


Your Favours of March 18 and April 11 are come to Hand with all the Books, &c. mentioned in the invoice, in good Order, and am much obliged to you for your ready Compliance with all my Requests.

I believe I could have got Subscriptions for 20 Sets of the Universal History, and perhaps more, but unluckily a Ship from Ireland has, since the Receipt of your Letter, brought in 20 Setts compleat, and they are offer’d at a lower Rate than the English Edition can be afforded at, even if I paid but 4s. per vol.2 I do what I can to lessen the Credit of that piratical Edition, and talk much of the Improvements made in this; but that being to be had entire immediately, and this not until after many Months, weighs a good deal with Some; and others object, that ’tis to be apprehended the London Booksellers will either curtail the folio Edition greatly to save Money, or put the Subscribers at last to the Expense of a greater Number of Volumes than 20; seeing the Volumes are much less than those of the Irish Edition, the 3 first of the one containing but little more than the first of the other. If they think fit to venture a Parcel here Hall will do his best to dispose of them, and I will assist him what I can. They may send a Parcel also to Mr. Parker Printer of New York, a very honest punctual Man.3

I am glad all the Bills I sent you have been paid or accepted. You may expect more in a short Time, and after the next Parcel of Books are paid for you will chiefly have to deal with Mr. Hall, into whose Hands I have agreed to put the Shop, &c.

With all our best Respects to you and yours, heartily wishing you Health and Happiness, I conclude Your obliged humble Servant

B. Franklin

Per Mesnard

[Note numbering follows the Franklin Papers source.]

9The ALS is listed in Anderson Galleries Sale No. 1008 (Oct. 30–31, 1913), item 198.

1Letters not found.

2See above, p. 146 n.

3James Parker. See above, II, 341 n.

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