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

By Benjamin Franklin

Page 246

that this is a harder nut to crack than they imagined.

We have not yet applied to any foreign power for assistance, nor
offered our commerce for their friendship. Perhaps we never may: yet
it is natural to think of it, if we are pressed.

We have now an army on the establishment which still holds yours

My time was never more fully employed. In the morning at six, I am
at the committee of safety, appointed by the assembly to put the
province in a state of defence; which committee holds till near nine,
when I am at the congress, and that sits till after four in the
afternoon. Both these bodies proceed with the greatest unanimity,
and their meetings are well attended. It will scarce be credited in
Britain, that men can be as diligent with us from zeal for the public
good, as with you for thousands per annum. Such is the difference
between uncorrupted new states, and corrupted old ones.

Great frugality and great industry are now become fashionable here:
gentlemen, who used to entertain with two or three courses, pride
themselves now in treating with simple beef and pudding. By these
means, and the stoppage of our consumptive trade with Britain, we
shall be better able to pay our voluntary taxes for the support of
our troops. Our savings in the article of trade amount to near five
million sterling per annum.

I shall communicate your letter to Mr. Winthrop, but the camp is at
Cambridge, and he has as little leisure for philosophy as myself. * *
* Believe me ever, with sincere esteem, my dear friend,

Yours most affectionately.


[149] This and the two following letters were addressed to Dr.
Priestley, as appears by a letter from that gentleman to the editor
of the Monthly Magazine, which will be found in the appendix to the
present volume. _Editor._

_Account of the first Campaign made by the British Forces in

_Philadelphia, Oct. 3, 1775._


I am to set out to-morrow for the camp[151], and having but just
heard of this opportunity, can only write a line to say that I am
well and hearty.--Tell our dear good friend * * *, who sometimes has
his doubts and despondencies about our firmness, that America is
determined and unanimous; a very few tories and place-men excepted,
who will probably soon export themselves.--Britain, at the expence
of three millions, has killed one hundred and fifty Yankies this
campaign, which is 20,000_l._ a head; and at Bunker's Hill she gained
a mile of ground, half of

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Text Comparison with The Autobiography of Benjamin Franklin

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The family continued all of the Church of England till about the end of Charles the Second's reign, when some of the ministers that had been outed for nonconformity holding conventicles in Northamptonshire, Benjamin and Josiah adhered to them, and so continued all their lives: the rest of the family remained with the Episcopal Church.
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Page 85
in other points of vice and virtue, have given up the struggle, and concluded that "a speckled ax was best"; for something, that pretended to be reason, was every now and then suggesting to me that such extream nicety as I exacted of myself might be a kind of foppery in morals, which, if it were known, would make me ridiculous; that a perfect character might be attended with the inconvenience of being envied and hated; and that a benevolent man should allow a few faults in himself, to keep his friends in countenance.
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This I distributed among the principal inhabitants gratis; and as soon as I could suppose their minds a little prepared by the perusal of it, I set on foot a subscription for opening and supporting an academy; it was to be paid in quotas yearly for five years; by so dividing it, I judg'd the subscription might be larger, and I believe it was so, amounting to no less, if I remember right, than five thousand pounds.
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1775 Returns to America; chosen a delegate to the Second Continental Congress; placed on the committee of secret correspondence; appointed one of the commissioners to secure the cooperation of Canada.