The Autobiography of Benjamin Franklin

By Benjamin Franklin

Page 51

to live very
agreeably, for they all respected me the more, as they found Keimer
incapable of instructing them, and that from me they learned something
daily. We never worked on Saturday, that being Keimer's Sabbath, so I
had two days for reading. My acquaintance with ingenious people in the
town increased. Keimer himself treated me with great civility and
apparent regard, and nothing now made me uneasy but my debt to Vernon,
which I was yet unable to pay, being hitherto but a poor oeconomist.
He, however, kindly made no demand of it.

Our printing-house often wanted sorts, and there was no letter-founder
in America; I had seen types cast at James's in London, but without
much attention to the manner; however, I now contrived a mould, made
use of the letters we had as puncheons, struck the matrices in lead,
And thus supply'd in a pretty tolerable way all deficiencies. I also
engrav'd several things on occasion; I made the ink; I was
warehouseman, and everything, and, in short, quite a factotum.

But, however serviceable I might be, I found that my services became
every day of less importance, as the other hands improv'd in the
business; and, when Keimer paid my second quarter's wages, he let me
know that he felt them too heavy, and thought I should make an
abatement. He grew by degrees less civil, put on more of the master,
frequently found fault, was captious, and seem'd ready for an
outbreaking. I went on, nevertheless, with a good deal of patience,
thinking that his encumber'd circumstances were partly the cause. At
length a trifle snapt our connections; for, a great noise happening
near the court-house, I put my head out of the window to see what was
the matter. Keimer, being in the street, look'd up and saw me, call'd
out to me in a loud voice and angry tone to mind my business, adding
some reproachful words, that nettled me the more for their publicity,
all the neighbors who were looking out on the same occasion being
witnesses how I was treated. He came up immediately into the
printing-house, continu'd the quarrel, high words pass'd on both sides,
he gave me the quarter's warning we had stipulated, expressing a wish
that he had not been oblig'd to so long a warning. I told him his wish
was unnecessary, for I would leave him that instant; and so, taking my
hat, walk'd out of doors, desiring Meredith, whom I saw below, to take
care of some things I left, and

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

Page 1
Letter to the same, on the subject of uniting the colonies more intimately with Great Britain, by allowing them representatives in parliament 37 Plan for settling two Western colonies in North America, with reasons for the plan, 1754 41 Report of the committee of aggrievances of the assembly of Pensylvania, dated Feb.
Page 53
Rejected by the governor for being unseasonably timed.
Page 56
Some general remarks.
Page 83
The conquest of Constantinople, and final reduction of the Greek empire, dispersed many curious manufacturers into different parts of Christendom.
Page 84
It is said, that Ireland pays near a million sterling annually to its absentees in England: the balance of trade from Spain, or even Portugal, is scarcely equal to this.
Page 106
"--This may have been the case in particular instances, at particular times and places: as in South Carolina, about 58 years since; when the colony was thought in danger of being destroyed by the Indians and Spaniards; and the British merchants, in fear of losing their whole effects there, called precipitately for remittances; and the inhabitants, to get something lodged in safe countries, gave any price in paper-money for bills of exchange; whereby the paper, as compared with bills, or with produce, or other effects fit for exportation, was suddenly and greatly depreciated.
Page 146
He indeed has taken great pains to give unfavourable impressions of me, and perhaps may flatter himself, that it is impossible so much true industry should be totally without effect.
Page 161
This had been the wisdom of our government with respect to raising money in the colonies.
Page 171
) And that this was more than their fair proportion is not merely an opinion of mine, but was the judgment of government here, in full knowledge of all the facts; for the then ministry, to make the burthen more equal, recommended the case to parliament, and obtained a reimbursement to the Americans of about 200,000_l.
Page 172
The rest of your friend's reasonings and propositions appear to me truly just and judicious; I.
Page 181
The stamp act says, we shall have no commerce, make no exchange of property with each other, neither purchase nor grant, nor recover debts; we shall neither marry nor make our wills, unless we pay such and such sums; and thus it is intended to extort our money from us, or ruin us by the consequences of refusing to pay it.
Page 218
"And whereas the art and mystery of making _hats_ hath arrived at great perfection in Prussia, and the making of hats by our remoter subjects ought to be as much as possible restrained: and forasmuch as the islanders before mentioned, being in possession of wool, beaver, and other furs, have presumptuously conceived they had a right to make some advantage.
Page 227
Page 233
--They will probably complain to your parliament, that they are taxed by a body in which they have no representative, and that this is contrary to common right.
Page 237
Redress no grievance, lest they should be encouraged to demand the redress of some other grievance.
Page 297
And that all the world may judge with how much humanity, as well as justice, I shall behave in this office; and that even my enemies may be convinced I take no delight to rake into the dunghill lives of vicious men; and to the end that certain persons may be a little eased of their fears, and relieved from the terrible palpitations they have lately felt and suffered, and do still suffer; I hereby graciously pass an act of general oblivion, for all offences, crimes, and misdemeanors of what kind soever, committed from the beginning of the year 1681, until the day of the date of my first paper, and promise only to concern myself with such as have been since and shall hereafter be committed.
Page 302
The ill nature appears, in his endeavouring to discover satire, where I intended no such thing, but quite the reverse: the good sense is this, that drawing too good a character of any one is a refined manner of satire, that may be as injurious to him as the contrary, by bringing on an examination that undresses the person, and in the haste of doing it, he may happen to be stript of what he really owns and deserves.
Page 317
FOOTNOTE: [178] From the Gentleman's Magazine, for September, 1797; communicated by the gentleman who received it.
Page 331
of chess, in which we have often points to gain, and competitors or adversaries to contend with, and in which there is a vast variety of good and ill events, that are, in some degree, the effects of prudence or the want of it.
Page 384
_Blindness_ occasioned both by lightning and electricity, i.