Benjamin Franklin Papers

To Benjamin Franklin from Arthur Lee, 23 February 1778

From Arthur Lee

ALS: American Philosophical Society

Challiot Feby. 23d. 1778

Titles of the Bills movd for by Ld. North5

1st. That leave be given to bring in a Bill to enable his Majesty to appoint Commissioners with sufficient Powers to Treat, consult and agree upon means of quieting the Disorders now subsisting in certain of the Colonies, Plantations and Provinces in North America.

2d. That the Propositions be referrd to the consideration of a Committee of the whole House.

3. That leave be given to bring in a Bill for declaring the intentions of the Parliament of G.B. concerning the exercise of the right of imposing taxes within the Colonies Provinces and Plantations in N. America.

The above are the Heads of the Bills you mention. Mr. Hartley’s anxiety shews him to have given too much into the King and Lord North’s policy which is to temporize. The truth is not in them.6 I have the honor to be with great respect Dear Sir, Your most Obedient Servant

Arthur Lee

Addressed: The Honble / Benjamin Franklin / Passi

Notation: A Lee to BF. Feb. 23d. 78 Chaillot

[Note numbering follows the Franklin Papers source.]

5Lee is answering BF’s indirect inquiry in his note of the same day. The titles of the bills had presumably come from Thornton, but not in the letters that BF had just returned to Lee. They struck BF as important enough to forward to Versailles; his verbatim copy of Lee’s wording, undated, is in the AAE. For a fuller description of North’s proposals see the headnote on Hartley’s letter above, Feb. 18.

61 John 2:8.

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