Benjamin Franklin Papers

To Benjamin Franklin from Lewis R. Morris, 11 November 1782

From Lewis R. Morris9

ALS: University of Pennsylvania Library

Office for Foreign Affairs 11th. November 1782


Enclosed you have a Bill of Exchange on Monsieur Grande for the amount of your Salary from the first of July to the thirtieth September; this Bill has been purchased at the same price as those already remitted vizt. six shillings and three pence currency for five Livres—1

As Mr Livingston stands charged in the Treasury Books for all monies remitted for your Salary, let me request your receipt.

We are still ignorant of the allowance you make your private Secretary, and the contingent Expences of your Office— Mr Livingston is desireous to be informed of these expences, with a state of your account, that they may be settled and the ballance remitted.

I have the honor to be sir with the highest Respect your most obedient humble servt

L R Morris

Received from the Superintendant of Finance for Salary due Doctor Franklin from the first day of July 1782. to the thirtieth of September following … 2,777.68 Dolls2
Exchange 6 /3 Currency for 5 Livres—
16666 l.t. 13 s:
16666 l.t. 19 s: D 2,777.68

The Honble Benjn. Franklin

[Note numbering follows the Franklin Papers source.]

9Lewis Richard Morris (1760–1825), a nephew of Gouverneur Morris. He and Pierre-Etienne Du Ponceau (XXXVI, 581–2n) were undersecretaries to Robert R. Livingston: DAB; George Dangerfield, Chancellor Robert R. Livingston of New York, 1746–1813 (New York, 1960), p. 145.

1For background on the recent bills of exchange for BF’s salary see BF to Livingston, Oct. 14. Morris purchased this bill of exchange using Pennsylvania pounds, at the same rate of exchange that RB received in July: XXXVII, 576–7. One Pennsylvania pound was worth 16 l.t., whereas the British pound sterling was worth about 24 l.t.

2This is a quarter of BF’s annual salary of £2,500, which Congress had approved for BF as minister plenipotentiary (XXX, 543) and did not alter when giving him collateral duty as peace commissioner. Morris here computes the amount in specie dollars, at 4 s. 6 p. in British currency per dollar: Morris Papers, V, 127.

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