Benjamin Franklin Papers

To Benjamin Franklin from the Pennsylvania Assembly Committee of Correspondence, 16 October 1772

From the Pennsylvania Assembly Committee of Correspondence

LS: Library of Congress

Philadelphia Octr. 16. 1772


We transmit inclosed the Resolves of the House appointing us their Committee of Correspondence, and you their Agent to transact the Affairs of this Province in Great Britain.6

The Instructions given by former Assemblies, respecting the Trade and Commerce and other general Rights, and Liberties of America, have been so full and explicit, that nothing material occurs in Addition to them. We have therefore only to desire, in case any Measures should be pursued that may by any means affect them, that you would exert your utmost Endeavours in Opposition; and that, on the Contrary, should any thing offer which may seem likely to restore that Harmony between Great Britain and her Colonies, so necessary to their mutual Safety and Happiness, that you will promote it by every mean in your Power.

We are also ordered to inform you that the House, taking into their Consideration your Salary for the ensuing Year, have resolved, that you shall be allowed at the Rate of five Hundred Pounds Sterling per Annum for the first Six Months, and afterwards at the Rate of three Hundred Pounds Sterling.7 We are your Assured Friends8

Jos. Galloway Speaker
Saml Rhoads
Sl Shoemaker.
Wm. Rodman
Isa: Pearson

Benjamin Franklin Esqr.

Endorsed: Pennsylvania Committee of Correspondence 1772 Salary reduced from £500 per Annum to £300

[Note numbering follows the Franklin Papers source.]

6At its first meeting, on Oct. 14, the new Assembly had re-elected Galloway as speaker, and on the following day had chosen this committee of correspondence and reappointed BF as agent. 8 Pa. Arch., VIII, 6896, 6898–9.

7The action of the House, taken at the time of BF’s reappointment (ibid., p. 6899), is mysterious. The committee’s letter and the endorsement, which appears to be in BF’s hand, mean that his salary was cut by £100 for 1773; and we can find no record that the action was rescinded. Galloway and Samuel Rhoads seem to have opposed it; see BF to Galloway below, Jan. 6, 1773. If so they failed, for BF entered only £400 as his 1773 salary. Yet by the end of 1774 he had apparently received a total of £2,000 from the province for the past four years. Jour., pp. 52, 57; Ledger, p. 3.

8For Samuel Shoemaker see above, XII, 344 n; all the others had been members of the previous committee: above, XVIII, 232–3.

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