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

By Benjamin Franklin

Page 106

and eight-shilling pieces,
long before paper-money was made. But this practice of increasing
the denomination was found not to answer the end. The balance of
trade carried out the gold and silver as fast as they were brought
in; the merchants raising the price of their goods in proportion
to the increased denomination of the money. The difficulties for
want of cash were accordingly very great, the chief part of the
trade being carried on by the extremely inconvenient method of
barter; when in 1723 paper-money was first made there; which gave
new life to business, promoted greatly the settlement of new lands
(by lending small sums to beginners on easy interest, to be repaid
by instalments) whereby the province has so greatly increased in
inhabitants, that the export from hence thither is now more than
tenfold what it then was; and by their trade with foreign colonies,
they have been able to obtain great quantities of gold and silver to
remit hither in return for the manufactures of this country. New York
and New Jersey have also increased greatly during the same period,
with the use of paper-money; so that it does not appear to be of
the ruinous nature ascribed to it. And if the inhabitants of those
countries are glad to have the use of paper among themselves, that
they may thereby be enabled to spare, for remittances hither, the
gold and silver they obtain by their commerce with foreigners; one
would expect, that no objection against their parting with it could
arise here, in the country that receives it.

The 2d reason is, "_That the_ merchants _trading to America have_
suffered _and lost by the paper-money_."--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. The unsettled state of government for a long time in
that province had also its share in depreciating its bills. But
since that danger blew over, and the colony has been in the hands of
the crown; their currency became fixed, and has so remained to this
day. Also in New England, when much greater quantities were issued
than were necessary for a medium of trade, to

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Text Comparison with The Autobiography of Benjamin Franklin

Page 9
I never knew either my father or mother to have any sickness but that of which they dy'd, he at 89, and she at 85 years of age.
Page 11
I afterward sold them to enable me to buy R.
Page 39
He thank'd me cordially, the information being of importance to him; and from that time he became my friend, greatly to my advantage afterwards on many occasions.
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Stephen Potts, a young countryman of full age, bred to the same, of uncommon natural parts, and great wit and humor, but a little idle.
Page 54
It happened that they wrought an effect on me quite contrary to what was intended by them; for the arguments of the Deists, which were quoted to be refuted, appeared to me much stronger than the refutations; in short, I soon became a thorough Deist.
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{ 10 } { 11 } { 12 } NIGHT.
Page 86
In this piece it was my design to explain and enforce this doctrine, that vicious actions are not hurtful because they are forbidden, but forbidden because they are hurtful, the nature of man alone considered; that it was, therefore, every one's interest to be virtuous who wish'd to be happy even in this world; and I should, from this circumstance (there being always in the world a number of rich merchants, nobility, states, and princes, who have need of honest instruments for the management of their affairs, and such being so rare), have endeavored to convince young persons that no qualities were so likely to make a poor man's fortune as those of probity and integrity.
Page 88
"][8] [8]This is a marginal memorandum.
Page 93
As we play'd pretty equally, we thus beat one another into that language.
Page 97
Walking the rounds, too, was often neglected, and most of the nights spent in tippling.
Page 102
I experienced, too, the truth of the observation, "that after getting the first hundred pound, it is more easy to get the second," money itself being of a prolific nature.
Page 111
The Moravian happen'd not to please his colleagues, and on his death they resolved to have no other of that sect.
Page 113
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Page 114
their old counselors to make their apology.
Page 116
Our city, tho' laid out with a beautiful regularity, the streets large, strait, and crossing each other at right angles, had the disgrace of suffering those streets to remain long unpav'd, and in wet weather the wheels of heavy carriages plough'd them into a quagmire, so that it was difficult to cross them; and in dry weather the dust was offensive.
Page 123
The best public measures are therefore seldom adopted from previous wisdom, but forc'd by the occasion.
Page 129
Clair, the hussar, with a body of soldiers, will immediately enter the province for the purpose, which I shall be sorry to hear, because I am very sincerely and truly your friend and well-wisher, B.
Page 133
Captain Orme, who was one of the general's aids-de-camp, and, being grievously wounded, was brought off with him, and continu'd with him to his death, which happen'd in a few days, told me that he was totally silent all the first day, and at night only said, "Who would have thought it?" That he was silent again the following day, saying.
Page 137
He answer'd me that it was not one of their established principles, but that, at the time of their obtaining that act, it was thought to be a principle with many of their people.
Page 142
And my new honour proved not much less brittle; for all our commissions were soon after broken by a repeal of the law in England.