Franklin's Autobiography (Eclectic English Classics)

By Benjamin Franklin

Page 140

men, having soon five hundred and sixty under my command. My son, who
had in the preceding war been an officer in the army raised against
Canada, was my aid-de-camp, and of great use to me. The Indians had
burned Gnadenhut, a village settled by the Moravians, and massacred
the inhabitants; but the place was thought a good situation for one of
the forts.

In order to march thither, I assembled the companies at
Bethlehem,[176] the chief establishment of those people. I was
surprised to find it in so good a posture of defense; the destruction
of Gnadenhut had made them apprehend danger. The principal buildings
were defended by a stockade, they had purchased a quantity of arms and
ammunition from New York, and had even placed quantities of small
paving stones between the windows of their high stone houses, for
their women to throw down upon the heads of any Indians that should
attempt to force into them. The armed brethren, too, kept watch, and
relieved[177] as methodically as in any garrison town. In conversation
with the bishop, Spangenberg, I mentioned this my surprise; for,
knowing they had obtained an act of Parliament exempting them from
military duties in the colonies, I had supposed they were
conscientiously scrupulous of bearing arms. He answered me that it was
not one of their established principles, but that, at the time of
their obtaining that act, it was thought to be a principle with many
of their people. On this occasion, however, they, to their surprise,
found it adopted by but a few. It seems they were either deceived in
themselves or deceived the Parliament; but common sense, aided by
present danger, will sometimes be too strong for whimsical opinions.

It was the beginning of January when we set out upon this business of
building forts. I sent one detachment toward the Minisink,[178] with
instructions to erect one for the security of that upper part of the
country, and another to the lower part, with similar instructions; and
I concluded to go myself with the rest of my force to Gnadenhut, where
a fort was thought more immediately necessary. The Moravians procured
me five wagons for our tools, stores, baggage, etc.

Just before we left Bethlehem, eleven farmers, who had been driven
from their plantations by the Indians, came to me requesting a supply
of firearms, that they might go back and fetch off their cattle. I
gave them each a gun with suitable ammunition. We had not marched many
miles before it began to rain, and it continued raining all day. There
were no habitations on the road to

Last Page Next Page

Text Comparison with The Complete Works in Philosophy, Politics and Morals of the late Dr. Benjamin Franklin, Vol. 1 [of 3]

Page 29
At the moment that he was sinking, I seized him by the fore-top, saved him, and drew him on board.
Page 35
At the time of our first acquaintance he professed no particular religion, but a little of all upon occasion.
Page 67
To this circumstance may be attributed the long duration of the club; which I shall have frequent occasion to mention as I proceed.
Page 68
I see him still at work when I return from the club at night, and he is at it again in the morning before his neighbours are out of bed.
Page 85
But a very slight attention will convince us of the injustice of this procedure: Dr.
Page 94
Franklin and the other trustees were enabled to prosecute their plan, for perfecting the institution, and opening the college upon the large and liberal foundation on which it now stands; for which purpose they obtained their additional charter, dated May 27th, 1755.
Page 104
A detachment marched down to Philadelphia, for the express purpose of murdering some friendly Indians, who had been removed to the city for safety.
Page 105
The disturbances produced in America by Mr.
Page 117
And having considered that the covering its ground-plat with buildings and pavements, which carry.
Page 147
Page 156
On these accounts we suppose electrified bodies discharge their atmospheres upon unelectrified bodies more easily, and at a greater distance from their angles and points than from their smooth sides.
Page 182
"LONDON, MARCH 27, 1773.
Page 210
Page 211
When they got up, they all declared they had not felt any stroke, and wondered how they came to fall; nor did any of them either hear the crack, or see the light of it.
Page 236
Page 247
West's house from damage by a stroke of lightning, would give me great pleasure.
Page 250
_ ----"I had a set of electrical points, consisting of three prongs, of large brass wire tipt with silver, and perfectly sharp, each about seven inches long; these were rivetted at equal distances into an iron nut about three quarters of an inch square, and opened at top equally to the distance of six or seven inches from point to point, in a regular triangle.
Page 253
that of _conducting_ the lightning.
Page 281
Page 302
in rooms, electrified positively and negatively, 353.