Benjamin Franklin Papers

Joseph Belton to the American Commissioners, 17 April 1778: résumé

Joseph Belton to the American Commissioners5

ALS: Massachusetts Historical Society

<Passy, April 17, 1778: I was captured at sea last January en route from Baltimore to Charleston, and imprisoned in England until the Admiralty released me; I then came here needing assistance. You will, I hope, lend me fifteen guineas, which I will repay on my return to America.6>

[Note numbering follows the Franklin Papers source.]

5Published in Taylor, Adams Papers, VI, 37. Belton had been experimenting in America several years before with artillery to be fired from a submarine, and BF had given him an introduction to Washington: above, XXII, 185 n, 522–3.

6He did not return home, but stayed in Europe to try to obtain backing for a gun of his invention; he will reappear in vol. XXVIII.

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