Benjamin Franklin Papers

From Benjamin Franklin to Jane Mecom, 10 July 1764

To Jane Mecom

ALS: Yale University Library

Philada. July 10. 1764

Dear Sister

We all condole with you most sincerely on the Death of your Daughter.8 She always appear’d to me of a sweet and amiable Temper, and to have many other good Qualities that must make the Loss of her more grievous for Brother and you to bear. Our only Comfort under such Afflictions is, that God knows what is best for us, and can bring Good out of what appears Evil. She is doubtless happy: which none of us are while in this Life.

Brother Peter and Sister are well.9 Their Maid which they brought with them, and a young Girl, have been both inoculated, and have got finely over the small Pox. They join with my Mrs. Franklin1 Sally and myself in Love to you and yours: But do not write; as no Letters can now go free in America but mine, Mr. Foxcroft’s and our Secretary’s; the latter only Business of the Office. The Act of Parliament forbidding.2 I am, Your ever affectionate Brother

B Franklin

Addressed: To / Mrs. Jane Mecom / Boston / Free / B Franklin

[Note numbering follows the Franklin Papers source.]

8Jane Mecom’s daughter Sarah (1737–1764; C.17.5), who had married William Flagg of Boston in 1756, died June 12, 1764. She had given birth to four children within a period of six years. The youngest daughter, Sarah, died the following November 9 and the next youngest, Mary (Polly), died in March 1765. Van Doren, Franklin-Mecom, p. 101.

9Peter Franklin (C.9), BF’s only surviving brother, had recently moved from Newport to Philadelphia. He had become postmaster of the city by October 1764, replacing BF’s relative William Dunlap. Above, X, 183 n, 392 n. His wife was the former Mary Harman.

1BF’s wife, Deborah, as distinguished from Peter’s wife.

2On the new restrictions on the franking privilege, which became law June 1, 1764, see above, p. 39 n. The secretary of the North American Post Office was James Parker, for whose new commission see the document immediately above.

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