Benjamin Franklin Papers

To Benjamin Franklin from Jean de Neufville & fils, [after 28 June 1779]

From Jean de Neufville & fils

ALS: American Philosophical Society

[after June 28, 1779]8

High Honourable Sir!

Will yoúr Excellency give me leave to transcribe at the foot of the present the latest important news we gott here from the Continent if she knew it already, She will excúse ús Zeal from the pleasúre we natúrally felt on the Arrivall of two bottoms from oúr frends in those qúarters, we have seven Sail in oúr harboúr and some more are dayly expected; may we enjoy the protection and Kind influence of yoúr Excellency those connections will give ús—business equal up to oúr spirits, of which we may hope Y E. will be convinced; and So complimenting YE. on the Last declaration of the Coúrt of Spain in favoúr of the American Caúse we make bold to add that if oúr wishes and those of oúr Worthy Protector of this City are granted, we may soon see likewise the Knot fastly tied which we endeavourd to Lay between the Two Sister Republicks.9

May we begg the favoúr again to have the enclosed forwarded,1 tho’ we have occasion fr. writing we are ashamed to say our neighboúrs enjoy increased protection in the American trade, bútt we further we dare Say we will always if not Surpass them be equal to the most Zealoús Among them, in trúe affection for the Country Where Liberty resides.

May we begg once more for the Continúation of the powerfúll protection of yoúr excellency and so subscribe with the utmost Veneration and Regard High Honoúrable Sir! Yoúr Excellencys most devoted and Obedt Servants

John DE Neufville & Son.

Extract of the providence Gazet of the 24th. of Aprill

Boston, 22 Apl. On friday last great joy was diffused through this town, by the Arrivall of the Continentall fregat Warren Jno. Hopkins Esqr. after a very Súccessfull crúise she sailed fm. hence some weeks ago accompanied with the queen of france fregat Capn. Olney and the ranger of 20 Gúnns Capn Simson in the Continentall service2 they first took a privateer schooner of 14 Guns, from New York for which they gott intelligence of a fleet of provisions and stores bound fm that place to Georgia to a large Amoúnt for the supply of the brittish Army the fleet consisted in 9 Saill 7 of which have been taken, of the most considerable as

Kings ship
20 Gunns 150 men
ship Maria 16 Gunns 84 Men with 1800 Case of flour
privateer schooner the hibernia briggs patriot, Prince frederick, bachelor, john, and schooner Chance with stores. &ca. 8 Case Gúnn 45 men—

The jason Arrived on Saturday last the schooner Charlotte on friday at Rotterdam with oút the Valúes of the Vessells those prices [prizes] amoúnt far upward £80,000 stg. in Another paper it is Said fm. boston the 26 Apl. that all the Vessells had retúrnd safe and brought in the mentiond 8 prices.

This is probabily due to the Cautious advice we heard Some time ago given by great Generall Washington that Such a transport should be expected.3

Addressed: To his Excellencÿ / B: Franklin Esqr. / Ambassador Plenipotentiary of the / Thirteen United States of No America. / at Passi

Notation: Neufville John & Son

[Note numbering follows the Franklin Papers source.]

8Dated by the news from Boston, which appeared in the June 29 issue of the Gaz. de Leyde and presumably was brought by the ship mentioned in the firm’s June 28 letter. That letter must have preceded this, as it clearly refers to its June 17 letter as being “our last.”

9A reference to a Dutch-American treaty de Neufville had negotiated with William Lee; see BF’s letter to Dumas of March 12.

1Not located.

2For the cruise of the Warren, Queen of France, and Ranger see Gordon’s letter of May 5.

3In early March Washington had advised Congress of the convoy: Fitzpatrick, Writings of Washington, XIV, 206. He mentioned the capture in general orders: ibid., XIV, 443.

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