Benjamin Franklin Papers

To Benjamin Franklin from Courtney Melmoth, 11 January 1778

From Courtney Melmoth

ALS: American Philosophical Society

11th. Jan: 78. Paris


I had the Honour of the Inclosd from Dr. Dubourg to day: Both that Gentleman, and Mr. Jeaneux, are so very anxious for the favor of your inspecting some electrical Instruments &c., &c., that I should be very happy if you could fix any Day and hour for a meeting at the Hotel de Chevigny, and let me know it by Mr. Kendall the bearer3 by which means, I shall have time to apprize Mr: Jeaneux and Dr. Dubourg of it. I have the Pleasure to be, Sir, Your most obedient Servant

Courtney Melmoth

The pressing sentiments of the Inclosures4 will, I hope, be my apology for so frequently troubling you on this occasion.

Addressed: To / Dr: Franklin / Passy

[Note numbering follows the Franklin Papers source.]

3Joseph Kendall was a Philadelphia Quaker, born about 1750, who had been read out of meeting for nonconformity, and had then studied medicine at Edinburgh and probably in London. He arrived in Paris on New Year’s Eve, dined with the commissioners at Passy on Jan. 4, and on the 17th received 240 l.t. on BF’s order as “a distressed American.” In early February he crossed to England with Jonathan Loring Austin, and immediately offered to sell his services to the British. Frederic R. Kirkland, ed., Letters on the American Revolution in the Library atKarolfred” (2 vols., New York, 1941–52), II, 43–7; WTF’s accounts (above, XXIII, 19), entry of Jan. 17, 1778.

4The enclosure from Dubourg is summarized in the note on Melmoth’s letter above, Jan. 8; the other enclosure was from Jeuneux to Melmoth, asking him to engage BF for the following Tuesday or Wednesday. APS.

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