Benjamin Franklin Papers

From Benjamin Franklin to [John Robertson], 28 January 1780

To [John Robertson]2

Copy: Library of Congress

Passy, Jan. 28. 1780.


I received yours of the 17th. Instant,3 relating to your son. He was here the   and I assisted him with some money, five Louis to help him forward to you.4 He set out for Nantes I suppose immediately, and I hope he is safe with you before this time. I am, sir &c.

Capt. Robinson, (Send it under Cover to Mr. John Ross Nantes)

[Note numbering follows the Franklin Papers source.]

2BF had recently confused his name with “Robinson”; see BF to Hodgson, Jan. 20, and XXX, 488n.


4His letter of the 17th is missing, but among BF’s papers at the APS is a promissory note for 5 louis d’or (120 l.t.) “to assist me in returning to America.” It is dated Jan. 9 and signed John Robertson; the Alphabetical List of Escaped Prisoners records the same transaction. Either the son’s name was also John or he signed on behalf of his father. They may be the same pair as the Capt. Robinson and son who were in Amsterdam in October; de Neufville and Dumas recommended the father to BF: XXX, 570, 604–5. A John Robertson or Robinson served as mate on the Pa. brigantine Black Prince in 1781: Claghorn, Naval Officers, p. 260; Charles H. Lincoln, comp., Naval Records of the American Revolution 1775–1788 (Washington, 1906), p. 240.

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