Benjamin Franklin Papers

From Benjamin Franklin to William Parsons, 15 December 1755

To William Parsons

ALS: American Philosophical Society

Philada. Dec. 15. 1755

Dear Friend

We receiv’d yours of the 13th.7 You will before this time have receiv’d the Arms and Ammunition, Blankets, &c. sent up for an intended Ranging Party; They may be made Use of for the Defence of your Town till we arrive. Capt. Trump, from Upper-Dublin, marches the Day after to-morrow with 50 Men to your Assistance. The Provisions for their Use go with them; so that they will not burthen you. Orders are gone to Capts. Aston and Wayne, to march also with their Companies immediately.8 They will remain on your Frontier two or three Months till they can be reliev’d by others. Mr. Hamilton and myself, set out on Thursday to visit you, erect Blockhouses in proper Places, &c. Think of suitable Officers for raising and commanding Men to be kept in the Province Pay, for Mr. Hamilton does not know the People your way; nor do I know who to recommend. He will bring some blank Commissions with him. I inclose you Twenty Pounds towards buying Meal and Meat for the poor Fugitives that take Refuge with you.9 Be of good Courage, and God guide you. Your [Friends] will never desert you. I am Yours affectionately

B Franklin

PS. Interest on the Bill 11s. 8d. is £20 11s. 8d.

Addressed: Wm. Parsons Esquire / Easton / per Mr Jasper Scull1

Endorsed: Mr. Franklin Decr. 15. 1755

[Note numbering follows the Franklin Papers source.]

7That is, BF and the other commissioners had received the letter; not found.

8For John Trump, George Aston, and Isaac Wayne, see below, pp. 343–7. Upon receiving this letter Parsons wrote Governor Morris on December 19 that the supplies had arrived and he was expecting Trump’s company “every minute.”

9This money, if not a personal donation, probably came from notes issued on the credit of the £60,000 act. Bills of credit authorized by the act apparently were not available until Jan. 14, 1756. See above, p. 255, and Votes, 1755–56, p. 167.

1Jasper Scull fulfilled various functions in Easton during the 1750s: builder, innkeeper, petitioner, etc. Peter Fritts, publ., History of Northampton County (Phila., 1877), pp. 146–9.

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