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

By Benjamin Franklin

Page 87

the facility of getting beaver, while the woods
were but little cleared, and there was plenty of those animals. The
case is greatly altered now. The beaver skins are not now to be had
in New-England, but from very remote places and at great prices. The
trade is accordingly declining there; so that, far from being able
to make hats in any quantity for exportation, they cannot supply
their home demand; and it is well known, that some thousand dozens
are sent thither yearly from London, Bristol, and Liverpool, and sold
there cheaper than the inhabitants can make them of equal goodness.
In fact, the colonies are so little suited for establishing of
manufactures, that they are continually losing the few branches they
accidentally gain. The working brasiers, cutlers, and pewterers, as
well as hatters, who have happened to go over from time to time and
settle in the colonies, gradually drop the working part of their
business, and import their respective goods from England, whence
they can have them cheaper and better than they can make them. They
continue their shops indeed, in the same way of dealing; but become
_sellers_ of brasiery, cutlery, pewter, hats, &c. brought from
England, instead of being _makers_ of those goods.

[5. _The American colonies_ not dangerous _in their nature to Great
Britain_.]

Thus much to the apprehension of our colonies becoming useless to
us. I shall next consider the other supposition, that their growth
may render them _dangerous_.--Of this, I own, I have not the least
conception, when I consider that we have already _fourteen separate
governments_ on the maritime coast of the continent; and, if we
extend our settlements, shall probably have as many more behind them
on the inland side. Those we now have are not only under different
governors, but have different forms of government, different laws,
different interests, and some of them different religious persuasions
and different manners.--Their jealousy of each other is so great,
that however necessary an union of the colonies has long been, for
their common defence and security against their enemies, and how
sensible soever each colony has been of that necessity; yet they
have never been able to effect such an union among themselves; nor
even to agree in requesting the mother country to establish it for
them. Nothing but the immediate command of the crown has been able
to produce even the imperfect union, but lately seen there, of
the forces of some colonies. If they could not agree to unite for
their defence against the French and Indians, who were perpetually
harassing their settlements, burning their villages,

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

Page 0
It is certainly better calculated to convey a general idea of the subject, than any attempt of the kind which has yet fallen under our observation.
Page 1
Virtue and Innocence, a Poem 1 0 The Economy of Human Life 1 0 Old Friends in a New Dress, or Selections from Esop's Fables, in Verse, 2 parts, plates 2 0 Little Jack Horner, in Verse, plain 1s.
Page 2
However, let us hearken to good advice, and something may be done for us; "God helps them that help themselves," as Poor Richard says.
Page 3
"One to-day.
Page 4
'But with our industry we must likewise be steady, settled, and careful, and oversee our own affairs with our own eyes, and not trust too much to others: for, as Poor Richard says, "I never saw an oft-removed tree, Nor yet an oft-removed family, That throve so well as those that settled be.
Page 5
Octr.
Page 6
You expect they will be sold cheap, and, perhaps, they may for less than they cost; but, if you have no occasion for them, they must be dear to you.
Page 7
Octr.
Page 8
" The day comes round before you are aware, and the demand is made before you are prepared to satisfy it; or, if you bear your debt in mind, the term, which at first seemed so long, will, as it lessens, appear extremely short: "Time will seem to have added wings to his heels as well as his shoulders.
Page 9
--I found the good man had thoroughly studied my Almanacks, and digested all I had dropt on those topics during the course of twenty-five years.