Benjamin Franklin Papers

To Benjamin Franklin from Nathan Blodget, 3 March 1779

From Nathan Blodget9

ALS: American Philosophical Society

Brest 3d. March 1779

May it please your Excellency

I have many pressing affairs that urge me strongly to Paris. & pray your Excellency to give me leave to go for a short time. I am Purser on board the Alliance, my duty is very light at present, so, that I can safely assure your Exy. that the service I have the honor to be in, shall not suffer in the least. Capt. Landais says he would give me leave to go, but it is not in his power; & I must tarry with the Ship, till I have permission from You.

I go on my own account, that it will cost nobody a farthing & if you knew all the circumstances which relate to me, for going or not going, I’m sure You’d give leave. They are indeed all too trifling to write. I humbly ask your Positive answer as soon as Convenient, & am With the profoundest Respect Your Excellencies Most obedt. & Most humble Servant

Nathan Blodget

His Exy. Dr. Franklin.

Addressed: To his Excellency / Doctor Benja. Franklin / Minister plenipotentiary &c &c / Passy / near Paris

Notation: Nathan Blodged brest 3. mars 1779.

[Note numbering follows the Franklin Papers source.]

9Blodget was a man whose company Landais preferred to that of the other officers of the Alliance, because, said Landais, “he behaved always with civility to me”: Pierre Landais, Memorial to Justify Peter Landai’s Conduct during the Late War (Boston, 1784), p. 17. The captain’s partiality did not endear Blodget to the other officers; see their March 2 letter to BF.

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