Benjamin Franklin Papers

To Benjamin Franklin from John MacMahon, 4 January 1778

From John MacMahon

ALS: American Philosophical Society

At the Military School Jany. the 4th. 1778


Chevalier De Keralio who had the pleasure of dining with you yesterday, sent me the inclosed news this morning.5 Though I believe you may be already informed of the contents, I thought it proper to transmit them to you. I see, notwithstanding all the boastings of Lord Sandwich, that he has not chased the American Privateers from the coasts of Europe and that they’ll give him still work enough. I lay hold with great pleasure of this and every other opportunity of asuring you of the respect, admiration and unparalleled esteem with which I have the honour to be Sir your most humble and obedient Servant

J. MacMahon

To Doctor Franklin

Notation: M. McMahon

[Note numbering follows the Franklin Papers source.]

5A man who became BF’s assiduous correspondent. Agathon Guynement de Kéralio (1723–88) was one of three well known Breton brothers. He had been a tutor in the family of the duc de Deux-Ponts, and was the secretary and confidant of the dowager duchess. By 1761 he was a colonel, and in 1773 was appointed subinspector of the Ecole militaire. He held that post until 1783, and at the end of his career procured the admission to the school of a candidate, even though only fourteen, by the name of Napoleon Bonaparte. Lopez, Mon Cher Papa, pp. 192–4; Bodinier; Larousse. Kéralio traveled often to visit military schools, and in the ports he picked up a great deal of information to forward to BF.

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