Benjamin Franklin Papers

To Benjamin Franklin from James Searle, 28 November 1781

From James Searle9

AL: American Philosophical Society

Hotel de Valois Wednesday Eveng 28 Novr. 1781

Mr. Searle’s respectfull compliments to Doctor Franklin— Mr. S. will most Chearfully wait on the Doctor at Dinner to morrow—1

Addressed: Monsieur / Monsieur Franklin / Passy

[Note numbering follows the Franklin Papers source.]

9The first extant letter from Searle since a March 15 acceptance of another dinner invitation: XXXIV, 455n. In the interim Searle had made futile attempts to raise a loan in the Netherlands and to sail back to America: XXXIV, 442–3n; XXXV, 530, 554n, 562–3, 590; William B. Reed, ed., Life and Correspondence of Joseph Reed … (2 vols., Philadelphia, 1847), II, 464.

1Among the others attending the dinner was Matthew Ridley, who had brought from America Robert Morris’ sons Thomas and Robert, Jr. While at Passy, on Nov. 29, they also met Thomas Barclay, Henry Bromfield, Jr., a Moses Andrews, and the three men introduced by JW in his second letter of Nov. 22, above, some or all of whom also may have dined with BF. Ridley’s stay in France is chronicled in a journal which he kept from Nov. 20, 1781, until February, 1783. The journal, now at the Mass. Hist. Soc., is described in Herbert E. Klingelhofer, “Matthew Ridley’s Diary During the Peace Negotiations of 1782,” W&MQ, 3rd ser., XX (1963), 98–101.

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