Benjamin Franklin Papers

Matthew Ridley to the American Commissioners, 3 April 1778

Matthew Ridley4 to the American Commissioners

ALS: American Philosophical Society

April the 3d: 1778

Honorable Sirs

The Bearer of this is Mr. Ebenezer Platt; with whose sufferings in the cause of America you are not unacquainted. He has lately got released from his confinement in consequence of a Petition from the Committee for American Prisoners. Mr. Platt is desirous of returning to his Country; and every mode but the one through France being stop’d I have taken the liberty of giving him a Letter to you; not doubting you will find him an Object of consideration and that you will do all in your Power, to further his design.

Mr. Platt since his release is married to a Daughter of Mrs. Wrights, who goes with him And who I believe is not unknown to Dr. Franklin.

I hope you will excuse the Freedom I have taken and believe me Honorable Sirs Your most Obedient and most humble Servant

Mattw: Ridley

Addressed: To / The Honorable Commissioners / of the United States of America / Paris

[Note numbering follows the Franklin Papers source.]

4An English merchant who had spent five years in Baltimore before coming home in 1775. He was active in London on a committee, with Benjamin Vaughan and others, to aid American prisoners of war, which doubtless accounts for this letter of recommendation. Although he had been in Paris the previous autumn, he must have returned to England before writing it. See Herbert E. Klingelhofer, “Matthew Ridley’s Diary during the Peace Negotiations of 1782,” W&MQ, 3d ser., XX (1963), 95–6.

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