Benjamin Franklin Papers

To Benjamin Franklin from Arthur Middleton, 4 July 1778

From Arthur Middleton7

ALS: American Philosophical Society

Charles Town S. Carolina July 4th. 1778


Hoping that my Name is not entirely unknown to you, I take the Liberty of introducing Alexander Gillon Esquire to your Notice; a Gentleman, who, to oblige the State of So. Carolina has accepted the Commission of Commodore.8 I promise myself no other recommendation of him is required, than the bare mention of his having chearfully given up his own Independance to assist in establishing that of America. He has thoughts of spending a short time in Paris, and any favours shewn him will confer an Obligation upon me. I am Sir with esteem and respect Your most obedient Servant

Arthur Middleton

The Honble Benjamin Franklin Esquire.

Addressed: The Honble / Benjamin Franklin / Commissioner of the United States / of America / at the Court of Versailles.

Endorsed: South Carolina

Notation: Arthur Middleton Charlestown 4e juillet 1778.

[Note numbering follows the Franklin Papers source.]

7A prominent South Carolina politician and the son of one of the largest landowners in the state: DAB. He and BF had served together in Congress.

8Gillon (1741–94), born in Rotterdam, had become a South Carolina merchant and sea captain and attained prominence at the beginning of the Revolution. In February, 1778, he was appointed commodore in the state navy, and was commissioned to go to Europe to obtain three warships, if need be by raising a loan: DAB; Lowndes to the commissioners below, July 18. Middleton’s and Lowndes’s letters were only two of the recommendations that he carried with him; others are below, from Rutledge of July 9 and Gadsden of the 15th. BF answered all these on June 12, 1779. Library of Congress.

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