Benjamin Franklin Papers

To Benjamin Franklin from Jean de Neufville & fils, 4 October 1781

From Jean de Neufville & fils

LS: American Philosophical Society

Amsterdam 4th. Octr. 1781

We are without any of Your Excellency’s Favors Since we had the honor of writing in date of the 20th. Ulto. The inclosed are particularly recommended to our Care, and came to hand yesterday per the Brigg Firebrand, Captn. Trowbridge from Newhaven3 Which place he left about the 20th. of Augt.— when hopes were high in America on Accot. of the expected arival of Monsr. De Grasse on that Coast!4 may the most sanguine that can reasonably be formed be realized.

We are happy to say His Excy. Mr: Adams’s health is almost perfectly recover’d. With the Highest regard we have the honor to be Your Excellency’s Most Obed Hble. Servts.

John DE Neufville Son

P.S. The Navarre, Captn. Keiller5 for philadelpa. being still in our Roads, we hope, will still receive in time, the Book entrusted to the Care of our Mr. Comte, With a Letter for Mr. de Brettigny.6

His Excellency Doctr. Benjn. Franklin Minister plenipo. of the United States of America Passy

[Note numbering follows the Franklin Papers source.]

3The brigantine Firebrand, 16, was commanded by Caleb Trowbridge (1748–1799): Louis F. Middlebrook, History of Maritime Connecticut during the American Revolution 1775–1783 (2 vols., Salem, Mass., 1925), II, 90.

4De Grasse arrived at the entrance to Chesapeake Bay on Aug. 30: Dull, French Navy, p. 245.

5The Pa. brigantine Navarro, 10, was commanded by William Keeler: Claghorn, Naval Officers, p. 172; Charles Henry Lincoln, comp., Naval Records of the American Revolution 1775–1788 (Washington, 1906), p. 401.

6Most probably the letter was for Charles-François Sevelinges, “marquis” de Brétigney (XXIV, 96). He escaped capture at Charleston when Gen. Lincoln sent him to Martinique to ask assistance; we assume he returned to S.C., as the Secretary at War urged his retention in service when the war ended: Bretigney to Congress, June 3, 1780 (National Archives); JCC, XVII, 563 and XXII, 40–1.

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