Benjamin Franklin Papers

To Benjamin Franklin from David Barclay, [11 December 1774]

From David Barclay

AL and copy:9 Library of Congress

No. 4

Cheapside 11th: Inst. [December 11, 1774]

D Barclay presents his Respects and acquaints Dr. Franklin that being inform’d a pamphlet entituled: a Friendly Address has been dispersed to the disadvantage of America (in particular by the Dean of Norwich) He desires Dr. F will peruse the inclosed, just come to hand from America; and if he approves of it republish it, as D B wishes something might be properly spread at Norwich.1 D B saw to Day a Person with whom he had been yesterday (before he call’d on Dr: F) and had the satisfaction of walking part of the way with him to another Noble Person’s house, to meet on the business, and he told him, that he could say, that he saw some light.2

[Note numbering follows the Franklin Papers source.]

9The AL has been removed from the journal of negotiations below, March 22, where BF provided the date; the copy is in the copy of the journal.

1These pamphlets raise a small problem that we find insoluble. The “Friendly Address” would seem to have been unquestionably [The Rev. Thomas B. Chandler,] A Friendly Address to All Reasonable Americans, on the Subject of Our Political Confusions ... (New York, 1774); but this identification is in fact most questionable. Publication was announced in New York in early November and in London in early January: Rivington’s N.-Y. Gazetteer, Nov. 10, 1774; London Chron., Jan. 3–5, 1775. If the pamphlet was not available in New York until Nov. 10, it could not have been circulating in Norwich before Dec. 11 unless copies had been sent weeks before publication. The counterpropaganda that Barclay wanted BF to republish is equally mysterious. It could scarcely have been the extracts of the proceedings of the Continental Congress, for we believe that that pamphlet did not reach London until Dec. 14; see the note on Barclay’s letter below, Dec. 18. The Dean of Norwich, Philip Lloyd (1729–90), had earlier been associated with the Grenville family, and this contact may have influenced his attitude toward the colonies. Joseph Foster, Alumni Oxonienses ... (4 vols., London and Oxford, 1887–88), III, 864; DNB under Charles Lloyd (1735–73).

2BF understood that Barclay’s chance companion was Lord Hyde, on his way to see either Dartmouth or North: below, p. 563. The “business” may have been discussion of BF’s “Hints,” although it is not clear whether they had yet reached Dartmouth; see the note on Barclay to BF above, Dec. 8.

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