Benjamin Franklin Papers

To Benjamin Franklin from Watson & Cossoul, 1 August 1782

From Watson & Cossoul

ALS:5 American Philosophical Society

Nantes. 1st. Augt. 1782

We are extreamly mortify’d that the circumstances of our business obliges us to trouble your Excellency so often: at present we wish to be furnish’d with a commission for the ship to our address mention’d in our last,6 to qualify her as letter of marque: She is call’d the Argo of 350 Tons burthen own’d in America by Messrs. Saml. R. Trevit & Co. and mounts 20, 9lb. & 18 pounders and is commanded by Saml R. Trevit7 the ship being nearly ready for sea, we shall be happy to be fav’d with the commission by return of the post.

In case any passengers should offer, it is indispensable that they come on immediately. We are with esteem Your Excellency’s Very Hl sts.

Watson & Cossoul

His Excellency Doctr. Franklin

Addressed: His Excellency Doct. Franklin / à / Passy

Notation: Watson & Cossoul Nantes 1er. Aout 1782

[Note numbering follows the Franklin Papers source.]

5In Watson’s hand.

6Above, July 23.

7Richard Trevett (Trevet) was from York, Massachusetts (later York, Maine). The Argo was shipwrecked off that port on Nov. 21, 1782: Kaminkow, Mariners, p. 315; Charles E. Banks, History of York, Maine (2 vols., Boston, 1931–35), I, 421. On Aug. 31, JW wrote WTF and enclosed an Aug. 7 bond for the ship; both documents are at the APS.

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