From John Torris
ALS: American Philosophical Society
Dunkerque 11th. Augt. 1780.
The Judgement your Excellency sends me for the five first Ransoms of the Black Princess I have Recd. & am thankfull for the Same.7
I had already been Told the Intentions of our Councill for Prises, relative to the Flora; the Same I cannot conceive, & I think the Judgment Issued by your Excellency, Conformable to the King’s Réglement 28th. June 1778, must have it’s exécution or be appeald to Congress.
I have no Answer yet relative to the Commission of the Princess who is Sailed the 2d. Instt., But am not uneasy on the Subject, & your Excellency will wait till the Cruise is out. The Poor Capt. John Bell with his Boy,8 are Still at St. Omers I think— They are meer Prisonners, His Brig Hopewell havg. been Taken by the Black Prince & afterwd. retaken by the Ennemy. ‘Tis really a great misfortune for John Bell to have Sufferd so long a Time, & I have often wished for his Exchange, & in doing the Same, ‘Tis granting an act of Humanity.
I respectfully am Honnd. Sir Your Excellency’s Most Humble & most obedient Servant
His Excellency Dr. Franklin./.
Notation: Mr. Torris. Augt. 11. 1780
7. BF sent it on Aug. 7, above.
8. For whom see our annotation of Sartine to BF, Aug. 5. BF inquired about them in his letter to Torris of the 7th.