Benjamin Franklin Papers

From Benjamin Franklin to Thomas Digges, 15 March 1780

To Thomas Digges

Copy: Library of Congress

Passy, March. 15. 1780.

Dear sir,

In compliance with your Recommendation, which I very much respect, I have given the Passports desired by Captains Mitchel and Carpenter.9 All these Businesses give me trouble for which I charge nothing; I hope there fore that the Gentlemen will in return do some thing on my Recommendation, and that is, to let me see their Names in the list of Subscribers for the Relief of their poor Countrymen Prisoners in England.

Please to acquaint Mr. Hartley that I have received his favour and shall answer in a few Days.— The Cartel expected is not yet arrived; I have already written that the English to exchange will be at Morlaix.— I can now only add, that I am ever, with much Esteem, Dear sir, y. m. o. h. Servant

Mr. Digges.

[Note numbering follows the Franklin Papers source.]

9Digges recommended the two men in his letter of March 3, above. Benjamin Carpenter’s passport, in WTF’s hand and signed by BF, is at the Mass. Archives. Dated March 14, it describes him as having purchased the Adventure, a 160-ton brigantine, to carry to the U.S. a cargo of coarse woolens, canvas, cordage, etc. At the same repository is Digges’s May 10 certification that, contrary to what is stated on the passport, the Adventure was principally the property of Henry Mitchell (see XXXI, 365n). Henry Mitchell’s passport, drafted by WTF and dated March 14, is at the APS. It states that Mitchell has purchased the ship James of about 200 tons to transport to America coarse woolens, canvas, cordage, etc. Mitchell’s passport also served, with the particulars of names and places revised, as a draft of a Dec. 4, 1780, one for Capt. Benj. Joy of the brigantine Swallow. Also at the APS are a March 14 bond executed by Carpenter for £2,000 and his March 15 oath of allegiance to the U.S. sworn before BF and attested by him.

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