Benjamin Franklin Papers

To Benjamin Franklin from Peter Collinson, 3 July 1753

From Peter Collinson

ALS: American Philosophical Society

July 3d [1753]

Received June the 30. 1753. On Board the London for Philadelphia One long Case Mark’d L4MC No. 1 which I promise to Deliver (Dangers of the sea Excepted)1.

Ja Shirley

paid Freight and primage 6s.

besides one Brown paper bundle of Books of which I cannot give the particulars for I am Just come to Town and To Morrow the Letters are taken away and I go out of Town by 5 in the Morning so I have only Time to Tell my Dear friend that I received his Two Large Pacquetts with variety of Articles Inclosed for which I am under many Obligations.2 I have dispatch’d the Letter with 2d Part of Electricity to Paris.3

In the New Transactions you’l find my Good Friend I am no banterer [?] but I shine with borrowed Light.4

I shall by next Ship send the Articles that was Lost for but this Day I received the pacquets and the Ship is gone so nothing can be Done.

I cannot possibly write to my friend J Bartram. Pray tell him to send Eight Boxs of Seeds and those that Doctor Mitchell Ordred Last year. I am mightyly pleased with Billys Performances.5 In the Long Case is 2 New Mapps.6 I am my Dear friend Truly yours

P Collinson

There is a parcell of Seed to our friend J Elliot. Pray tell him I could not write.

Addressed: To  Benn: Franklin Esqr  in Philadelphia  Per Cap Shirley

1The receipt is in a clerk’s hand, with an emendation “long” by Capt. James Shirley, who signed it; the rest is in Collinson’s.

2Not identified; possibly reports of BF’s additional experiments.

3Probably the first Supplement to BF’s Exper. and Obser., published in March 1753. In response to Dalibard’s account of the Marly experiment, addressed to the French Academy of Sciences, May 13, 1752, which the author sent him, BF sent copies of reports of his additional experiments, and reports of still others later on. See Dalibard’s translation of Exper. and Obser. (2d edit., Paris, 1756), 1, 23–4.

4In Phil. Trans., XLVII (1751–52), published in 1753, there was one article by Collinson and several in the form of letters to him.

5John Bartram’s son William (1739–1823), a student in the Academy of Philadelphia, was already a promising artist, whose “pretty performances” in drawing plants and flowers Collinson encouraged by rewards and orders. Darlington, Memorials, p. 193; Ernest Earnest, John and William Bartram (Phila., 1940), pp. 91–2.

6Possibly Thomas Jefferys’ New Chart or Map of America, published in April. Gent. Mag., XXIII (1753), 203.

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