Benjamin Franklin Papers

From Benjamin Franklin to James Wright, 26 June 1755

To James Wright2

Transcript: John L.W. Mifflin, Middlebush, N.J. (1955)

Philada. June 26. 1755

Dear Friend

I am glad to learn that the Flour is mostly if not all got up to Conegocheeg,3 and that you have so good a Prospect of getting Waggons to forward it to Wills’s Creek.

The Governor has sent down the Bill and proposes to pass it with about 30 Amendments,4 of which one is that the Commissioners named in the Act to dispose of the £5000 for Roads, Indian Expenses &c. shall lay out none of the Money without his Consent. Another that the £10000 given to General Braddock with the £5000 be sunk in 5 years. Another that the Money arising from the Excise during the remaining 5 years be not disposed of without the Governor’s Consent. Another that the Treasurer S. Preston Moore, be named in the Bill to continue till another be appointed by Act of Assembly &c. &c. &c. The House adhere to their Bill, and will send it up again tho’ without any Hopes of its Passing. They are pleas’d however to find that the Mask is now forc’d off and that not one word is mentioned of King’s Instructions which have long been made a Pretense to harass us, but the Governor is willing for a Bill to make Paper Money without a reclaiming Clause &c. provided we comply with the Proprietary Instructions, and agree not to chuse our own Officers nor make use of our own Money without his Consent. We should not have had this Clearing up of Things, if we had not sent him the original Royal Approbation of Gov. Thomas’s Act,5 which deprived him of all the old Subterfuges. My Love to all the Good Folks on both sides the River.

I am with sincere Esteem and Affection Dear Sir Your most obedient humble Servant

B. Franklin

I shall be glad to hear of Johnnys Success.6

Mr. James Wright

[Note numbering follows the Franklin Papers source.]

2James Wright of Hempfield (now Columbia) on the Susquehanna River, member of the Assembly, brother of Susanna Wright. See above, IV, 210 n.

3The Conococheague Creek flows into the Potomac River in western Maryland; Daniel Cresap had his home and store there. Sending supplies of flour here figures in the correspondence of Governor Morris and General Braddock. Much of it was packed in casks of green timber and had to be repacked to prevent spoiling. Braddock complained particularly of Cresap, “who has behaved in such a Manner in Relation to the Pennsylvania Flower that if he had been a French Commis, he could not have acted more for their Interest. In short, in every Instance but in my Contract for the Pennsylvania Waggons I have been deceived and met with nothing but Lies and Villainy.” Pa. Col. Recs., VI, 400, 407–8; I Pa. Arch., II, 330.

4See above, p. 83.

5In their message to Morris of June 21. Votes, 1754–55, pp. 106–7.

6“Johnny” was perhaps James Wright’s son John, but what he was undertaking is not known.

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