Benjamin Franklin Papers

From Benjamin Franklin to John Dixon, 7 October 1772

To John Dixon1

ALS (letterbook draft): Library of Congress

London, Oct. 7. 1772

[Dear] Sir,

I was duly favour’d with yours of March 8. 1771. accompany’d by the Gazettes containing the Advertisements relating to Eliz Holland, and the Mayor’s Affidavit; for which I am much oblig’d to your kind Care.2 But it seems there is still wanting an Affidavit from you expressing what you express in your Letter, that “notwithstanding all the Enquiry that has been made by means of those Advertisements, no such Person can be found or heard of in your Colony.” If you will send me such an Affidavit, certify’d by the Mayor it will add to the Obligation, and I shall take care the additional Expence be paid to your Order. My Compliments to Mrs. Dixon and Mrs. Davenport, with Thanks for their kind Remembrance of me.3 I am glad to hear they are well. I am, with great Regard, Sir, Your most obedient humble Servant

B Franklin

Mr Dixon

1The postmaster at Williamsburg, and co-publisher with Alexander Purdy of the Va. Gaz.; see above, XIII, 108 n.

2The search for Mrs. Holland, mentioned in the two preceding documents, had been active in Virginia and New York in 1763–64 and was then apparently abandoned; why it now revived we do not know.

3Both were sisters of BF’s old colleague in printing and the Post Office, William Hunter. Rosanna Dixon’s first husband had been Joseph Royle (d. 1766), Hunter’s successor as publisher of the Va. Gaz.: Douglas C. McMurtrie, A History of Printing in the United States … (2 vols., New York, 1936), II, 288. Mary Davenport’s husband, the Rev. Joseph (1732–88), was rector of Charles Parish, York Co., Va.: “Old Virginia Editors,” I W&MQ, VII (1898–99), 17.

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