The Autobiography of Benjamin Franklin

By Benjamin Franklin

Page 138

and his companions' guns
would not go off, the priming being wet with the rain.

The next day being fair, we continu'd our march, and arriv'd at the
desolated Gnadenhut. There was a saw-mill near, round which were left
several piles of boards, with which we soon hutted ourselves; an
operation the more necessary at that inclement season, as we had no
tents. Our first work was to bury more effectually the dead we found
there, who had been half interr'd by the country people.

The next morning our fort was plann'd and mark'd out, the circumference
measuring four hundred and fifty-five feet, which would require as many
palisades to be made of trees, one with another, of a foot diameter
each. Our axes, of which we had seventy, were immediately set to work
to cut down trees, and, our men being dextrous in the use of them,
great despatch was made. Seeing the trees fall so fast, I had the
curiosity to look at my watch when two men began to cut at a pine; in
six minutes they had it upon the ground, and I found it of fourteen
inches diameter. Each pine made three palisades of eighteen feet long,
pointed at one end. While these were preparing, our other men dug a
trench all round, of three feet deep, in which the palisades were to be
planted; and, our waggons, the bodys being taken off, and the fore and
hind wheels separated by taking out the pin which united the two parts
of the perch, we had ten carriages, with two horses each, to bring the
palisades from the woods to the spot. When they were set up, our
carpenters built a stage of boards all round within, about six feet
high, for the men to stand on when to fire thro' the loopholes. We had
one swivel gun, which we mounted on one of the angles, and fir'd it as
soon as fix'd, to let the Indians know, if any were within hearing,
that we had such pieces; and thus our fort, if such a magnificent name
may be given to so miserable a stockade, was finish'd in a week, though
it rain'd so hard every other day that the men could not work.

This gave me occasion to observe, that, when men are employ'd, they are
best content'd; for on the days they worked they were good-natur'd and
cheerful, and, with the consciousness of having done a good day's work,
they spent the evening jollily; but on our idle days

Last Page Next Page

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

Page 0
bound_, THE PAGAN MYTHOLOGY of ancient Greece and Rome versified, accompanied with Philosophical Elucidations of the probable latent meaning of some of the Fables of the Ancients, on a theory entirely new.
Page 1
with Biographical and Interesting Anecdotes 1 6 Watt's Catechism and Prayers, in 1 vol.
Page 2
of 32 Biographical Sketches of Eminent British Characters 1 6 Ditto, containing a Description of the most distinguished Places in England 1 6 *** Just published, The Mice & their Pic Nic; a good Moral Tale, price with neat coloured plates 1 0 THE WAY TO WEALTH.
Page 3
on diseases, absolutely shortens life.
Page 4
" [Illustration] 'Methinks I hear some of you say, "Must a man afford himself no leisure?" I will tell thee, my friend, what Poor Richard says, "Employ thy time well, if thou meanest to gain leisure; and, since thou art not sure of a minute, throw not away an hour.
Page 5
" Beware of little expences; "A small leak will sink a great ship," as Poor Richard says; and again, "Who dainties love shall beggars prove;" and moreover, "Fools make feasts, and wise men eat them.
Page 6
For, in another place, he says, "Many have been ruined by buying good pennyworths.
Page 7
" [Illustration: Published by W.
Page 8
" Gain may be temporary and uncertain; but ever, while you live, expense is constant and certain; and "It is easier to build two chimneys, than to keep one in fuel," as Poor Richard says: so, "Rather go to bed supper-less, than rise in debt," Get what you can, and what you get hold, 'Tis the stone that will turn all your lead into gold.
Page 9
* * * * * Transcriber's Notes: Only the most obvious and clear punctuation errors repaired.