Memoirs of Benjamin Franklin; Written by Himself. [Vol. 1 of 2] With His Most Interesting Essays, Letters, and Miscellaneous Writings; Familiar, Moral, Political, Economical, and Philosophical, Selected with Care from All His Published Productions, and Comprising Whatever Is Most Entertaining and Valuable to the General Reader

By Benjamin Franklin

Page 20

I stayed, soon bring myself
into scrapes; and farther, that my indiscreet disputations about
religion began to make me pointed at with horror by good people, as an
infidel or atheist. I concluded, therefore, to remove to New-York; but
my father now siding with my brother, I was sensible, that if I
attempted to go openly, means would be used to prevent me. My friend
Collins, therefore, undertook to manage my flight. He agreed with the
captain of a New-York sloop to take me. I sold my books to raise a
little money, was taken on board the sloop privately, had a fair wind,
and in three days found myself at New-York, near three hundred miles
from my home, at the age of seventeen, without the least recommendation
or knowledge of any person in the place, and very little money in my
pocket.

The inclination I had felt for the sea was by this time done away, or I
might now have gratified it. But having another profession, and
conceiving myself a pretty good workman, I offered my services to a
printer of the place, old Mr W. Bradford, who had been the first printer
in Pennsylvania, but had removed thence, in consequence of a quarrel
with the governor, General Keith. He could give me no employment, having
little to do, and hands enough already. But he said, "My son, at
Philadelphia, has lately lost his principal hand, Aquilla Rose, by
death; if you go thither, I believe he may employ you." Philadelphia was
one hundred miles farther; I set out, however, in a boat for Amboy,
leaving my chest and things to follow me round by sea. In crossing the
bay we met with a squall that tore our rotten sails to pieces, prevented
our getting into the kill, and drove us upon Long Island. In our way, a
drunken Dutchman, who was a passenger too, fell overboard; when he was
sinking, I reached through the water to his shock pate, and drew him up,
so that we got him in again. His ducking sobered him a little, and he
went to sleep, taking first out of his pocket a book which he desired I
would dry for him. It proved to be my old favourite author, _Bunyan's
Pilgrim's Progress_, in Dutch, finely printed on good paper, copper
cuts, a dress better than I had ever seen it wear in its own language. I
have since found that it has been translated into most of the languages
of Europe, and suppose it has been more generally read than any other
book, except perhaps the

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Text Comparison with Benjamin Franklin and the First Balloons

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The documents which I publish are copies of Franklin's letters, made on thin paper in a copying press (probably the rotary machine invented by Franklin), and all but one bear his signature in ink.
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.
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The Multitude separated, all well satisfied and delighted with the Success of the Experiment, and amusing one another with discourses of the various uses it may possibly be apply'd to, among which many were very extravagant.
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The great one of M.
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It was dismissed about One aClock in the Morning.
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The Air rarified.
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It was however much damaged.
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A very handsome triumphal Car will be suspended to it, in which Mess^rs.
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It may be attended with important Consequences that no one can foresee.
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FRANKLIN Sir JOSEPH BANKS.
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What became of them is not yet known here.
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Ils y ont ete accueillis par Mrs.
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_ au nomme Bertrand.
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27th instead of 27^th).
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.