Benjamin Franklin Papers

The American Commissioners to Merckle, [13 April 1778]

The American Commissioners to Merckle

AL (draft):8 American Philosophical Society; copies: Massachusetts Historical Society, National Archives (two)

[April 13, 1778]

We have done by our Friends at Amsterdam, who have followed our Orders, every thing that we thought incumbent on us to do relative to your Affairs, and We do not incline to have any further Concern with them.

[Note numbering follows the Franklin Papers source.]

8In reply to Merckle’s letter above of March 26, which Lee endorsed as given to him to answer. He did so in a one-sentence draft on the verso: “We are sorry it is not in our power to pay any farther for your Purchases.” On the same sheet, in WTF’s hand (or possibly BF’s), is the draft that we print and from which the copies were made. All three of them indicate the signers; Lee was for some reason not among them, but must have approved the purport. The copy in the Mass. Hist. Soc. is published in Butterfield, John Adams Diary, IV, 52; it is in a group of letters that Adams later believed he had written (p. 50), but this one seems to have been BF’s. For further documentation of the commissioners’ squabble with Merckle see Taylor, Adams Papers, VI, 28.

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