Memoirs of Benjamin Franklin; Written by Himself. [Vol. 2 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 168


* * * * *

"_To the President of Congress._

"Philadelphia, Nov. 29, 1788.


"When I had the honour of being the minister of the United States at the
court of France, Mr. Barclay arriving there, brought me the following
resolution of Congress:

"'Resolved, That a commissioner be appointed by Congress with full power
and authority to liquidate and _finally to settle_ the accounts of all
the servants of the United States who have been intrusted with the
expenditure of public money in Europe, and to commence and prosecute
such suits, causes, and actions as may be necessary for that purpose, or
for the recovery of any property of the said United States in the hands
of any person or persons whatsoever.

"'That the said commissioner be authorized to appoint one or more
clerks, with such allowance as he may think reasonable.

"'That the said commissioner and clerks respectively take an oath,
before some person duly authorized to administer an oath, faithfully to
execute the trust reposed in them respectively.

"'Congress proceeded to the election of a commissioner, and ballots
being taken, Mr. T. Barclay was elected.'

"In pursuance of this resolution, and as soon as Mr. Barclay was at
leisure from more pressing business, I rendered to him all my accounts,
which he examined and stated methodically. By his statements he found a
balance due to me on the 4th May, 1785, of 7533 livres, 19 sols, 3
deniers, which I accordingly received of the Congress Bank; the
difference between my statement and his being only seven sols, which by
mistake I had overcharged, about threepence halfpenny sterling.

"At my request, however, the accounts were left open for the
consideration of Congress, and not finally settled, there being some
articles on which I desired their judgment, and having some equitable
demands, as I thought them, for extra services, which he had not
conceived himself empowered to allow, and therefore I did not put them
in my account. He transmitted the accounts to Congress, and had advice
of their being received. On my arrival at Philadelphia, one of the first
things I did was to despatch my

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Text Comparison with The Complete Works in Philosophy, Politics and Morals of the late Dr. Benjamin Franklin, Vol. 2 [of 3]

Page 47
I have no idea of bodies at a distance attracting or repelling one another without the assistance of some medium, though I know not what that medium is, or how it operates.
Page 49
The objection from the freshness of rain-water is a strong one, but I think I have answered it in the letter above-mentioned, to which I must beg leave, at present, to refer you.
Page 67
And I suppose a dead body would have acquired the temperature of the air, though a living one, by continual sweating, and by the evaporation of that sweat, was kept cold.
Page 97
Franklin's works.
Page 112
This prevention I would thus endeavour to explain.
Page 140
vapour from a cup of tea in a warm room, and the breath of an animal in the same room, are hardly visible, but become sensible immediately when out in the cold air, so the vapour from the gulph stream, in warm latitudes is scarcely visible, but when it comes into the cool air from Newfoundland, it is condensed into the fogs, for which those parts are so remarkable.
Page 167
The river near the bottom of your garden affords a most convenient place for the purpose.
Page 177
James, a letter-founder in the same Close, and asking him if his people, who worked over the little furnaces of melted metal, were not subject to that disorder; he made light of any danger from the effluvia, but ascribed it to particles of the metal swallowed with their food by slovenly workmen, who went to their meals after handling the metal, without well washing their fingers, so that some of the metalline particles were taken off by their bread and eaten with it.
Page 194
This smell, however, never proceeded from the iron itself, which, in its nature, whether hot or cold, is one of the sweetest of metals, but from the general uncleanly manner of using those stoves.
Page 206
_ The workmanship of the rooms being all good, and just out of the workman's hand, the joints of the boards of the flooring, and of the pannels of wainscotting are all true and tight, the more so as the walls, perhaps not yet thoroughly dry, preserve a dampness in the air of the room which keeps the wood-work swelled and close.
Page 223
But when fuel is cheap (or where they have the art of managing it to advantage) they are well furnished.
Page 224
And he remarks, respecting those proportions, that they are similar to the harmonic divisions of a monochord.
Page 245
After some experience, any kind of coal may be used, and with this advantage, that no smell, even from the most sulphurous kind can come into your room, the current of air being constantly into the vase, where too that smell is all consumed.
Page 249
Franklin has indeed now and then acquainted me of your welfare, which I am always glad to hear of.
Page 289
_The Second Class_ To be taught, reading with attention, and with proper modulations of the voice, according to the sentiment and the subject.
Page 316
Their plenty would have lessened their value.
Page 328
By the same reasoning, as there would be few smugglers, if there were none who knowingly encouraged them by buying their goods, we may say, that the encouragers of smuggling are as bad as the smugglers; and that, as smugglers are a kind of thieves, both equally deserve the punishments of thievery.
Page 332
" I have not law enough to dispute his authorities, but I cannot persuade myself that it is equitable.
Page 346
--But they are, I doubt, too little disposed to labour without compulsion, as well as too ignorant to establish good government: and the wild Arabs would soon molest and destroy, or again enslave them.
Page 393
For consistency, the date and salutation at the beginning of each letter, and the closing and name at the end of each letter, have been put on separate lines (they were sometimes placed on the same line in the original printed text).