The Autobiography of Benjamin Franklin

By Benjamin Franklin

Page 29

in business who wanted yet three years of being at
man's estate. Holmes said what he could in favor of the project, but
my father was clear in the impropriety of it, and at last gave a flat
denial to it. Then he wrote a civil letter to Sir William, thanking
him for the patronage he had so kindly offered me, but declining to
assist me as yet in setting up, I being, in his opinion, too young to
be trusted with the management of a business so important, and for
which the preparation must be so expensive.

My friend and companion Collins, who was a clerk in the post-office,
pleas'd with the account I gave him of my new country, determined to go
thither also; and, while I waited for my father's determination, he set
out before me by land to Rhode Island, leaving his books, which were a
pretty collection of mathematicks and natural philosophy, to come with
mine and me to New York, where he propos'd to wait for me.

My father, tho' he did not approve Sir William's proposition, was yet
pleas'd that I had been able to obtain so advantageous a character from
a person of such note where I had resided, and that I had been so
industrious and careful as to equip myself so handsomely in so short a
time; therefore, seeing no prospect of an accommodation between my
brother and me, he gave his consent to my returning again to
Philadelphia, advis'd me to behave respectfully to the people there,
endeavor to obtain the general esteem, and avoid lampooning and
libeling, to which he thought I had too much inclination; telling me,
that by steady industry and a prudent parsimony I might save enough by
the time I was one-and-twenty to set me up; and that, if I came near
the matter, he would help me out with the rest. This was all I could
obtain, except some small gifts as tokens of his and my mother's love,
when I embark'd again for New York, now with their approbation and
their blessing.

The sloop putting in at Newport, Rhode Island, I visited my brother
John, who had been married and settled there some years. He received
me very affectionately, for he always lov'd me. A friend of his, one
Vernon, having some money due to him in Pensilvania, about thirty-five
pounds currency, desired I would receive it for him, and keep it till I
had his directions what to remit it in. Accordingly, he gave me an
order. This afterwards

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