Benjamin Franklin Papers

To Benjamin Franklin from Jacob Tucker, 15 August 1780

From Jacob Tucker7

ALS: American Philosophical Society

Forton Prison. August 15th 1780

May it Please your Honour.

I hope my Necesity at this time will Appologize for the Freedom I have taken In Acquainting you of my Situation, being now a Prisoner almost 27 Months being Destitute of Cloathing & Every Necessary of Life should Be Glad Your honour Would Take it into Consideration & send me some money to Releive My Real Wants. Your Honour Must understand That I Served in Defence of my Country on board The Continental frigate Boston Saml. Tucker Commander (and being a near Relation of Capt Tucker.) On our Cruize from L’Orient 7 Days We Captured The John & Rebecca.8 I Was put on board of her And on our passage to Boston was taken by the Porcupine frigate And Brought to England Where I have Remained Ever Since9 & When we shall get Relieved God only knows. Our Allowance here is hardly Enough for nature to subsist on. I hope Your honour Will Consider the Above & send me a little Relief And the favour Done Will be Ever Acknowledged by Your honour’s Most Obedient Humble Servant

Jacob Tucker

Addressed: A Son Excellence / Son Excellence Binjamin Franklin / ambassadeur plenipotentiaire des etats unis / et indepandants de l’amerique a la cour / de france. a Son hotel a Passy prés / Paris

Notation: Tucker Jacob Augt. 15. 1780.

[Note numbering follows the Franklin Papers source.]

7A former quartermaster aboard the frigate Boston: John H. Sheppard, The Life of Samuel Tucker, Commodore in the American Revolution (Boston, 1868), p. 339.

8The John and Rebecca was a Scotch brig captured on June 19, 1778, by Capt. Samuel Tucker (XXVI, 216–17n), six days after leaving Lorient. Jacob Tucker was mate of the prize: Sheppard, Life of Tucker, pp. 292, 294.

9He was committed to Forton on Aug. 28, 1778, and is listed as having been pardoned for exchange on Dec. 11, 1779: Kaminkow, Mariners, p. 192. Either the entry is erroneous or the pardon was rescinded.

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