Benjamin Franklin Papers

To Benjamin Franklin from Anthony Todd, 17 March 1775

From Anthony Todd

Letterbook copy: General Post Office, London

General post office March 17: 1775

Mr. Todd presents his Compliments to Dr. Franklin and sends him an extract of a Letter to Messrs. Foxcroft and Finlay of the 9th. of Decr. last concerning the Balance remaining in his Hands to which he has not as yet received an Answer, but makes no doubt when it comes it will clear up every Difficulty in settling his Accounts finally with this Office on paying the Balance as stated in the Sketch inclosed.

Mr. Fauquier has been here today but finds Dr. Franklin’s Account cannot be made up without the necessary Information from his Colleague.3

[Note numbering follows the Franklin Papers source.]

3This letter and BF’s reply, which immediately follows, when taken together indicate a misunderstanding between him and the Post Office that is hard to explain. He believed that he had from Foxcroft everything needed for closing the accounts, and furnished extracts from his friend’s letters to prove the point. According to BF’s Ledger, p. 11, he offered to pay the balance in sterling but was told to settle with Foxcroft in America. The reason must have been that the Accountant General lacked what he considered “necessary information.” BF apparently did not know what it was, and Foxcroft, to judge by his letter of Feb. 1, 1775, was equally baffled. We can only conjecture that the accounts, despite Todd’s harsh letter of Dec. 9, were still not in proper form.

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