Benjamin Franklin Papers

To Benjamin Franklin from Christian Emanuel Frolich: Résumé, 7 April 1781

From Christian Emanuel Frölich1

ALS: American Philosophical Society

<Görlitz, Silesia, April 7, 1781, in German: We would be extremely grateful if you would send the French warrant for a branch of our Masonic lodge here at Görlitz. The warrant sent from London was not suitable, for we have no intention of affiliating with the rite of Strict Observance of the Berlin lodge or the London lodge. If you could send us application cards I will do the necessary and send them back with [Mene?].2

I should also like to know if a M. Frosch, director of the loterie royale in Paris, is still living, if he is married, and if he is still a Protestant.3 A certain relative of his wishes to leave him a significant sum of money.

I ask this of you only because your readiness to help and your brotherly love are so well known. Should I be so lucky as to obtain a warrant for a lodge, I will be at your service.>

1A merchant who lived from 1737 to 1792: Hans-Albrecht Koch et al., eds., Deutscher Biographischer Index (4 vols., Munich, London, New York, 1986), I, 606. We wish to thank Liselotte Davis of Yale University for deciphering the eighteenth-century German hand to provide us with this résumé.

2A lodge at Görlitz, les Trois Flammes, did establish an affiliation of correspondence in 1785 with les Amis Réunis of the Grand Orient at Paris: Alain Le Bihan, Loges et chapîtres de la Grande Loge et du Grand Orient de France … (Commission d’histoire économique et sociale de la révolution française, Mémoires et documents, XX, Paris, 1967), pp. 446–7. For the rite of Strict Observance, then prevalent in German freemasonry, see Daniel Ligou, Dictionnaire de la franc-maçonnerie (Paris, 1987), pp. 601–5.

3Samuel Traugott Frosch (b. 1737), lottery employee and geographer: Koch, Deutscher Biographischer Index, I, 609.

The Loterie royale de France, established in 1776 to consolidate the lotteries of the Ecole royale militaire, several religious communities, and the Hôtel de Ville, was governed by a conseiller d’Etat: Marcel Marion, Dictionnaire des institutions de la France aux XVIIe et XVIIIe siècles (Paris, 1923; reprinted, New York, 1968), p. 343. Frosch, however, is not among the administrators listed in the Almanach royal for the years 1777 to 1782.

Index Entries