Benjamin Franklin Papers

To Benjamin Franklin from John Sweaney, 11 December 1779

From John Sweaney

ALS: American Philosophical Society

Angers Prisson Decmbr. 11: 1779


This is to Acquaint you of a person who is a Native of america Propperly beloning to Bostong saild out of Nubery the 7 of June 1779 in a Privetire Caled the sivellusige of fourting Guns Beloning to Mr Tracey Capt Gibings Commander9 & Was taking in a Prize beloning to the side ship & Carred to England and put in Prisson ware I made my Escape & Came out in a marchant man Bound to Croney shey was called the Goodintent and was taken By a French Privetire & Carride into Brest & put in Prisson Which as I did Not wknow ware or howe to Apply to Which made Lay hear so Long & Sr If you would be so kind as to get my Relisement & send me home in Some ship Beloning to america as I have a wife & Fameley in Bosting you Will greatley oblage your true sugject & Humble Srvt

John sweaney

Addressed: To / Mr Franklin Embasendor / for the thirteen united stats / of America Parress / [in another hand:] a Pasy près Paris

Notations in different hands: John Sweany, Angers Prison Dec. 11. 79 / angers

[Note numbering follows the Franklin Papers source.]

9His ship must have been the brigantine Civil Usage, carrying 14 cannon, owned by Jackson, Tracy, & Tracy of Newburyport, and once commanded by Andrew Giddings (XXIX, 486–8). We have no record of the ship’s commander in June, 1779, but Giddings was now captain of another ship: Allen, Mass. Privateers, p. 100; Claghorn, Naval Officers, p. 121; Elias and Finch, Letters of Digges, p. 6n.

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