Benjamin Franklin Papers

To Benjamin Franklin from Benjamin Vaughan, 27 January 1777

From Benjamin Vaughan

ALS: American Philosophical Society

Essex, January 27h: 1777.

My dearest sir,

Having a convenient opportunity9 I have sent you the publications you desired. The maps I hope you will do me the favor to accept of.

Upon a reconsideration of the matter I shall cancel the whole impression of your political works, and wait for the additional pieces. I shall then have it my power to give a new arrangement, with a total omission of all notes, excepting such as mark the periods of publication and the like. To this I conceive you will have as little objection as myself. But you will please to recollect, that I have not yet got your remarks upon paper currency. And might not the American edition of Mr. Galloway’s speech accompany the dialogue on slavery &c.? But I am still at a loss where to procure the paper about the twelve points of a senator.1

The letter to Mr. C: was safely delivered, and the forty guineas paid into his hands in the name of Mr. Jonathan Williams Junr.: for which I have one of the tellers’ receipt.2

All letters to this country are opened, and I suppose they are also opened from this country. While I write nothing treasonable against the minister, I have no fear of proclaiming to the world how much I am your respectful, grateful and affectionate

Benjn: Vaughan

P.S. We expect Dr: Price’s pamphlet out soon, and I believe it may contain some extracts from a paper supposed to have been drawn up by you in Congress, June, 177[5]3

List of books sent. Remembrancer from the beginning
Parliamentary Register from Ditto
Smith’s Wealth of Nations
Philosophical Transactions
Pamphlet about Gen: Washington
Mr. Radcliffe’s sermon on the fast.
Maps. { Holland and Pownall’s Map of New York
Montresor’s Ditto
Map of the lakes4

Addressed: Dr: Franklin, / Hotel d’Hambourg, / Paris.

Notations: Mr. Vaughan / Vaugan Bn. January 27. 1777.

[Note numbering follows the Franklin Papers source.]

9By Edward Bancroft; see his letter below, March 4.

1BF’s remarks on paper currency and preface to Galloway’s speech are above, XIV, 77–87 and XI, 271–311; they appear in Political Pieces on pp. 206–21 and 418–64 respectively. The “Conversation on Slavery” (above, XVII, 37–44) Vaughan did not print. The paper about a senator leaves us bemused: it sounds like a commentary on The Senator’s Remembrancer, which BF greatly admired (above, XVIII, 36 n); but we have no indication that he wrote about it, and Vaughan’s edition contains no such paper.

2We assume that Mr. C. was the Collinson of Browns & Collinson, and that the letter Vaughan delivered him was from JW rather than BF. The latter presumably did not know what the transaction was about. JW was supporting an illegitimate son in England, but did not admit the fact until his letter below of June 7. Vaughan had been in Paris at Christmas (see his note to BF below, Sept. 18) and had doubtless been intrusted with the money then.

3Price’s work, Additional Observations on the Nature and Value of Civil Liberty . . ., was published on Feb. 20, and did contain an extract of BF’s “Intended Vindication and Offer”: above, XXII, 114.

4Some items on this list, such as Adam Smith or the Phil Trans., need no identification. The first series of books was John Almon’s venture, The Remembrancer, or Impartial Repository of Public Events . . ., which began publication in 1775. The pamphlet “about” Washington was probably one or more of the spurious letters from him published in 1777, although we have found no printing so early in the year. The sermon was Ebenezer Radcliffe, A Sermon Preached at Walthamstow, December 13, 1776, Being the Day Appointed for a General Fast . . . (London, 1776). The three maps, all published in London in 1776, were Samuel Holland, The Provinces of New York, and New Jersey . . . Improved from the Original Materials, by Governor Pownall . . .; John Montresor, A Map of the Province of New York . . .; and William Bassier, A Survey of Lake Champlain Including Lake George. . . .

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