Franklin's Autobiography (Eclectic English Classics)

By Benjamin Franklin

Page 113

different sects, care was taken in the nomination of
trustees, in whom the building and ground was to be vested, that a
predominancy should not be given to any sect, lest in time that
predominancy might be a means of appropriating the whole to the use of
such sect, contrary to the original intention. It was therefore that
one of each sect was appointed; namely, one Church of England man, one
Presbyterian, one Baptist, one Moravian,[139] etc.; those, in case of
vacancy by death, were to fill it by election from among the
contributors. The Moravian happened not to please his colleagues, and
on his death they resolved to have no other of that sect. The
difficulty then was, how to avoid having two of some other sect by
means of the new choice.

Several persons were named, and for that reason not agreed to. At
length one mentioned me, with the observation that I was merely an
honest man and of no sect at all, which prevailed with them to choose
me. The enthusiasm which existed when the house was built had long
since abated, and its trustees had not been able to procure fresh
contributions for paying the ground rent and discharging some other
debts the building had occasioned, which embarrassed them greatly.
Being now a member of both sets of trustees, that for the building and
that for the academy, I had a good opportunity of negotiating with
both, and brought them finally to an agreement, by which the trustees
for the building were to cede it to those of the academy, the latter
undertaking to discharge the debt, to keep forever open in the
building a large hall for occasional preachers, according to the
original intention, and maintain a free school for the instruction of
poor children. Writings were accordingly drawn, and on paying the
debts the trustees of the academy were put in possession of the
premises; and by dividing the great and lofty hall into stories, and
different rooms above and below for the several schools, and
purchasing some additional ground, the whole was soon made fit for our
purpose, and the scholars removed into the building. The care and
trouble of agreeing with the workmen, purchasing materials, and
superintending the work, fell upon me; and I went through it the more
cheerfully as it did not then interfere with my private business,
having the year before taken a very able, industrious, and honest
partner, Mr. David Hall, with whose character I was well acquainted,
as he had worked for me four years. He took off my hands all care of

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Text Comparison with Franklin's Way to Wealth; or, "Poor Richard Improved"

Page 0
Page 1
DARTON_, And of most Booksellers in the United Kingdom.
Page 2
of 32 Biographical Sketches of Eminent British Characters 1 6 Ditto, containing a Description of the most distinguished Places in England 1 6 *** Just published, The Mice & their Pic Nic; a good Moral Tale, price with neat coloured plates 1 0 THE WAY TO WEALTH.
Page 3
" Work while it is called to-day, for you know not how much you may be hindered to-morrow.
Page 4
Many, without labour, would live by their wits only, but they break for want of stock;" whereas industry gives comfort, and plenty, and respect.
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1, 1805.
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"If you would know the value of money, go and try to borrow some; for he that goes a borrowing, goes a sorrowing," as Poor Richard says; and, indeed, so does he that lends to such people, when he goes to get it in again.
Page 7
consult, consult your purse.
Page 8
" The day comes round before you are aware, and the demand is made before you are prepared to satisfy it; or, if you bear your debt in mind, the term, which at first seemed so long, will, as it lessens, appear extremely short: "Time will seem to have added wings to his heels as well as his shoulders.
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The opening single quotes end pages later.