Franklin's Autobiography (Eclectic English Classics)

By Benjamin Franklin

Page 154

myself one morning to pay my respects, I found in his
antechamber one Innis, a messenger of Philadelphia, who had come from
thence express with a packet from Governor Denny for the general. He
delivered to me some letters from my friends there, which occasioned
my inquiry when he was to return, and where he lodged, that I might
send some letters by him. He told me he was ordered to call to-morrow
at nine for the general's answer to the governor, and should set off
immediately. I put my letters into his hands the same day. A fortnight
after I met him again in the same place. "So, you are soon returned,
Innis?" "Returned! no, I am not gone yet." "How so?" "I have called
here by order every morning these two weeks past for his lordship's
letter, and it is not yet ready." "Is it possible, when he is so great
a writer? for I see him constantly at his escritoire." "Yes," says
Innis, "but he is like St. George on the signs, always on horseback,
and never rides on." This observation of the messenger was, it seems,
well founded; for, when in England, I understood that Mr. Pitt[193]
gave it as one reason for removing this general, and sending Generals
Amherst and Wolfe, that the minister never heard from him, and could
not know what he was doing.

This daily expectation of sailing, and all the three packets going
down to Sandy Hook, to join the fleet there, the passengers thought it
best to be on board, lest by a sudden order the ships should sail and
they be left behind. There, if I remember right, we were about six
weeks, consuming our sea stores, and obliged to procure more. At
length the fleet sailed, the general and all his army on board, bound
to Louisburg,[194] with intent to besiege and take that fortress; all
the packet boats in company ordered to attend the general's ship,
ready to receive his dispatches when they should be ready. We were out
five days before we got a letter with leave to part, and then our ship
quitted the fleet and steered for England. The other two packets he
still detained, carried them with him to Halifax, where he stayed some
time to exercise the men in sham attacks upon sham forts, then altered
his mind as to besieging Louisburg, and returned to New York with all
his troops, together with the two packets above mentioned, and all
their passengers! During his absence the French and savages had taken
Fort George, on the frontier of

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Text Comparison with Benjamin Franklin and the First Balloons

Page 0
, in December, 1905, and previously had belonged to G.
Page 1
It is supposed that not less than 50,000 People were assembled to see the Experiment.
Page 2
It diminished in Apparent Magnitude as it rose, till it enter'd the Clouds, when it seem'd to me scarce bigger than an Orange, and soon after became invisible, the Clouds concealing it.
Page 3
Some think Progressive Motion on the Earth may be advanc'd by it, and that a Running Footman or a Horse slung and suspended under such a Globe so as to have no more of Weight pressing the Earth with their Feet, than Perhaps 8 or 10 Pounds, might with a fair Wind run in a straight Line across Countries.
Page 4
We have only at present the enclosed Pamphlet, which does not answer the expectation given us.
Page 5
) PASSY, Nov^r 21st, 1783 Dear Sir, I received your friendly Letter of the 7th Inst.
Page 6
_Planant sur l'Horizon.
Page 7
It was well that in the hurry of so hazardous an Experiment, the Flame did not happen by any accidental Mismanagement to lay hold of this Straw; tho' each had a Bucket of Water by him, by Way of Precaution.
Page 8
Perhaps Mechanic Art may find easy means to give them progressive Motion in a Calm, and to slant them a little in the Wind.
Page 9
With great and sincere Esteem, I am, Dear Sir, Your most obed^t & most humble Servant, B.
Page 10
I am the more anxious for the Event, because I am not well inform'd of the Means provided for letting themselves gently down, and the Loss of these very ingenious Men would not only be a Discouragement to the Progress of the Art, but be a sensible Loss to Science and Society.
Page 11
With great Esteem, I am, Dear Sir, Your most obedient & most humble servant, B.
Page 12
In paragraph three, for "Post," in Smyth, read "Port;" in paragraph six for "Adventures," in Smyth, read "Adventurers;" in paragraph thirteen.
Page 13
" Since Franklin's copy of the _Proces-Verbal_ differs only in his spelling the word "_sang-froid_" instead of "_sens-froid_," I do not print it.
Page 14
17, "Sept.