Benjamin Franklin Papers

To Benjamin Franklin from Jonathan Williams, Jr., 30 October 1777

From Jonathan Williams, Jr.

ALS: American Philosophical Society

Nantes Octo 30. 1777.

Dear and honored Sir

I have received your favour of the 25 Inst. and immediately destroyed the Contents. The one you wrote a few days before never came to hand.4 I have sent to my procureur to take the Steps the paper you inclosed advised, but I confess I cannot understand the use it will be of. In consequence of what I need not repeat to you I felt myself a good deal eased of my anxiety on leaving paris and at my return here found that the Debts of these Cruisers5 together with what I advanced, amounted to near 20,000 Livres. The payment of the remainder6 as I had before begun, was not possible to be avoided, for in Business a man must be as delicate of his Name as a woman of her Reputation, and as these People would not have had a Sol credit but in [?] my Name I could not think of refusing especially circumstanced as I was with Mr. C.

I hope soon to have some satisfactory News on this Subject. I send by Mr. Peltier who is just setting off your little black Ink pot. I am ever with the gratest Respect [and] affection Your dutifull Kinsman

J Williams J

As Mr. Peltier will be on the Spot I hope some arrangements may be made with the Minister to facilitate our putting arms on board the Lion.7

Addressed: A Monsieur / Monsieur Franklin / Passy.8

[Note numbering follows the Franklin Papers source.]

4BF’s letter of the 23rd, now lost along with that of the 25th, was delayed; JW acknowledged receipt of it in his below, Nov. 11.

5The Raleigh and the Alfred.

6Presumably 380,000 l.t., to make up the 400,000 l.t. that he discussed in his letters above of Oct. 9 and 18.

7The commissioners heard on Nov. 1, from JW’s letter to them of Oct. 28, that the ship had been forbidden to carry arms in her cargo; on the 2nd Deane tried to get the prohibition withdrawn: Lee, Life of Arthur Lee, I, 346.

8On the verso of the sheet with the address is the following note in another hand and, no doubt, about some other matter: “Comte Swiecicki demeure rue St Jaque à coté du collège du Plessis au coin de la rue des morts chez Mr. Remis grenière. Swiecicki.”

Index Entries