Excerpts from the letter

High resolution images of the original letter:   Page 1   Page 2

Excerpt 1

"The Company present (whose talking to me, and to one another I suppose occasioned my Inattention to what I was about) Say that the flash was very great and the crack as loud as a Pistol; yet my Senses being instantly gone, I neither Saw the one nor hear the other; nor did I feel the Stroke on my hand, tho' I afterwards found it raised a round swelling where the fire enter'd as big as half a Pistol Bullet by which you may judge of the Quickness of the Electrical Fire."

Excerpt 2

"I then felt what I know not how well to describe; as universal Blow thro'out my whole Body from head to foot which seem'd within as well as without; after which the first thing I took notice of was a violent quick Shaking of my body which gradually remitting, my sense as gradually return'd, and then I tho't the Bottles must be discharged but Could not conceive how, till att last I Perceived the Chain in my hand, and Recollected what I had been About to do: that part of my hand and fingers which held the Chain was left white as tho' the Blood had been Driven Out, and Remained so 8 or 10 Minutes After, feeling like Dead flesh, and I had a Numbness in my Arms and the back of my Neck, which Continued till the Next Morning but wore off. Nothing Remains now of this Shock but a Soreness in my breast Bone, which feels As if it had been Brused. I Did not fall, but Suppose I should have been Knocked Down if I had Received the Stroke in my head: the whole was Over in less than a minute."