Benjamin Franklin Papers

From Benjamin Franklin to John Hunter, [16 October 1755]

To John Hunter8

Draft: American Philosophical Society

[October 16, 1755]9

Dear Sir,

I could not avoid meeting the Assembly, who are now Sitting, but must rise in two or three Days, when I purposed to proceed for Virginia; But your Letter to Mr. Nelson1 mentioning your Intention of being here in ten Days, and being very desirous of seeing you in order to settle our Money Account and concert Measures relating to a farther Supply of Cash to discharge the Waggon Affair, General Shirly having sent his Warrant to Mr. Johnston to pay me such Sum as shall be found necessary for that purpose after Settlement of the Waggon Accounts.2 I shall now wait your Arrival here, fearing I might otherwise miss you on the Way.3 Mr. Johnston has drawn out of my Hands all your Cash to about £800 Currency.4

Col. Hunter

[Note numbering follows the Franklin Papers source.]

8Col. John Hunter (fl. 1750–1786), of Hampton, Va., sometimes confused with his relative William (deputy postmaster general, see above, V, 18 n), was a merchant, colonel of the Elizabeth City County militia, agent for Thomlinson & Hanbury of London supplying British troops in America. R. A. Brock, ed., The Official Records of Robert Dinwiddie (2 vols., Richmond, 1883–84); Pa. Col. Recs., VI, 394 et passim. Hunter sold out to Capel and Osgood Hanbury, 1766, and settled in England. He addressed BF, Feb. 7, 1786, as “My Most Dear Old Friend.” 1 Wm. and Mary Quar., VII (1898–99), 12–14; Pargellis, Military Affairs, pp. 270–1.

9Dated by reference to BF’s letter to Johnston of this day and by the reference to the Assembly, which met October 14 and adjourned the 18th.

1Probably John Nelson (1730?–1784), of a Boston merchant family allied with Charles Apthorp, New England agent for Thomlinson & Hanbury. Nelson was in Philadelphia, 1757–59, and probably at other times, where he endorsed bills on Thomlinson & Hanbury for BF, and served as money agent for British forces in western Pennsylvania. [Temple Prince], Descent of John Nelson and of His Children (N.Y., 1886), pp. 5–6, II; Pargellis, Lord Loudoun, p. 137 n; The Papers of Col. Henry Bouquet (Harrisburg, 1941), IV, 10, 49, 52; David Hall’s Remittances to England, June 2, 1757–April 12, 1762 (described in the next volume), APS.

2See above, p. 190.

3At this point, BF wrote and crossed out “Perhaps I may accompany you to New York, and …” He did not go to New York or Virginia at this time.

4A heavy line drawn through this letter may indicate that it was not sent; perhaps Hunter arrived in Philadelphia before its dispatch.

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