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 200


_A._ Yes, I think they will; especially if, at the same time, the trade
is open again, so that remittances can be easily made. I have known
several instances that make it probable. In the war before last, tobacco
being low, and making little remittance, the people of Virginia went
generally into family manufactures. Afterward, when tobacco bore a
better price, they returned to the use of British manufactures. So
fulling-mills were very much disused in the last war in Pennsylvania,
because bills were then plenty, and remittances could easily be made to
Britain for English cloth and other goods.

_Q._ If the stamp-act should be repealed, would it induce the assemblies
of America to acknowledge the rights of Parliament to tax them, and
would they erase their resolutions?

_A._ No, never.

_Q._ Are there no means of obliging them to erase those resolutions?

_A._ None that I know of; they will never do it, unless compelled by
force of arms.

_Q._ Is there a power on earth that can force them to erase them?

_A._ No power, how great soever, can force men to change their opinions.

_Q._ Do they consider the postoffice as a tax or as a regulation?

_A._ Not as a tax, but as a regulation and convenience; _every assembly_
encouraged it, and supported it in its infancy by grants of money, which
they would not otherwise have done; and the people have always paid the

_Q._ When did you receive the instructions you mentioned?

_A._ I brought them with me when I came to England, about fifteen months

_Q._ When did you communicate that instruction to the minister?

_A._ Soon after my arrival; while the stamping of America was under
consideration, and _before_ the bill was brought in.

_Q._ Would it be most for the interest of Great Britain to employ the
hands of Virginia in tobacco or in manufactures?

_A._ In tobacco, to be sure.

_Q._ What used to be the pride of the Americans?

_A._ To indulge in the fashions and manufactures of Great Britain.

_Q._ What is now their pride?

_A._ To wear their old clothes over again, till they can make new ones.

Feb. 13. Benjamin Franklin, Esq., having passed through his examination,
was exempted from farther attendance.
_He withdrew._

Feb. 24. The resolutions of the committee were reported by the chairman,
Mr. Fuller, their _seventh_ and last resolution setting forth, "that it
was their opinion that the House be moved, that leave be given to bring
in a bill to repeal the stamp-act." A proposal for recommitting this
resolution was negatived by 240 votes to 133.--_Journals of the

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

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Page 1
Virtue and Innocence, a Poem 1 0 The Economy of Human Life 1 0 Old Friends in a New Dress, or Selections from Esop's Fables, in Verse, 2 parts, plates 2 0 Little Jack Horner, in Verse, plain 1s.
Page 2
Judge, then, how much I must have been gratified by an incident I am going to relate to you.
Page 3
"Sloth makes all things difficult, but industry all easy; and he that riseth late, must trot all day, and shall scarce overtake his business at night; while laziness travels so slowly, that poverty soon overtakes him.
Page 4
" Leisure is time for doing something useful; this leisure the diligent man will obtain, but the lazy man never; for "A life of leisure and a life of laziness are two things.
Page 5
" [Illustration: Published by W.
Page 6
Many a one, for the sake of finery on the back, have gone with a hungry belly, and half starved their families; "Silks and satins, scarlet and velvets, put out the kitchen fire," as Poor Richard says.
Page 7
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'This doctrine, my friends, is reason and wisdom; but, after all, do not depend too much upon your own industry, and frugality, and prudence, though excellent things; for they may all be blasted without the blessing of Heaven; and therefore, ask that blessing humbly, and be not uncharitable to those that at present seem to want it, but comfort and help them.
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Richard says.