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Browsing: Papers of John Adams, Volume 7

Docno: ADMS-06-07-02-0127

Author: Franklin, Benjamin
Author: Lee, Arthur
Author: Adams, John
Author: First Joint Commission at Paris
Recipient: Sartine, Antoine Raymond Jean Gualbert Gabriel de
Date: 1778-11-05

The Commissioners to Gabriel de Sartine

We have the Honour of your Excellencys Letter of the 5th. of this Month, but as the Memoire, of the French surgion, which your Excellency proposed to transmit to Us, was, by some Accident omitted to be inclosed in your Letter, We are ignorant of his Case, and consequently unable to inform your Excellency whether it is in our Power to afford him any Relief. If your Excellency, will have the Goodness to send Us the Memoire, We will answer your Letter without Delay.1
In the Mean Time, We may acquaint your Excellency that the United States, have not adopted any Precautions, for sending Succours to their subjects <residing> imprisond in England. We have ventured, without orders or Permission from the United States, to lend small sums of Money to Persons who have escaped from Irons and Dungeons in Great Britain, to bear their Expences to Nantes, L'Orient or Bourdeaux. But We have sent no succour to them while in England { 195 } except a small sum of Money put into the Hands of Mr. Hartley2 to be disposed of by him for the Relief of such as should most want it.
We shall consider every Frenchman taken by the English on Board of American Vessells, in the same light as if he was an American by Birth, and entitled to the same Assistance from Us, as Americans are in the same situation. We have the Honour to be
1. Sartine's letter of the 5th (LbC, Adams Papers) inquired about the “Precautions” taken by the Commissioners in regard to American prisoners in England and should have included a memorial from Jacques Fraissignes, a prisoner at Alresford, England, who had been captured on an American ship, Le Gest. The memorial reached the Commissioners in a letter from Sartine of 16 Nov. (LbC, Adams Papers). No further mention of this matter has been found. Contemporary copies of Sartine's letters, as well as the memorial dated 16 Sept., are in the Franklin Papers at the Library of Congress (Worthington C. Ford, comp., List of the Benjamin Franklin Papers in the Library of Congress, Washington, 1905, p. 63).
2. On 18 April, Ferdinand Grand was ordered to pay David Hartley 3,600 livres to aid American prisoners in England (vol. 6:2).

Docno: ADMS-06-07-02-0128

Author: Montgomery, Robert
Recipient: Adams, John
Date: 1778-11-06

From Robert Montgomery

[salute] Dear Sir

From the Many favours and Civilitys I Received whilst I had the Honour of Paying you My Respects at Passy1 I am Bound in duty and Gratitude to Make you a Tender of My best Acknowledgements, which Please Accept.
Since My Return to My House here about ten days Agoe I find no other Novelty than An Order from Court to the Governours of All the Sea-ports of Spain that they Shall Permit all Cruising Vessels to Bring in Condem and Sell their Prizes without Shewing Partiality to any of the States Now at War. There is Also Orders that all Foraigen Merchents Residing in Spain Shall Attend the Governour in Person and give in Writeing their Names and the Nation of which they Are Subjects. This was done here Yesterday and I the Only Person that Subscribed America. This Last Order has given Rise to Many Surmises, as it is Regular with Spain to Order All Merchents Who Are Subjects of any Nation they Are At War With to Retire from this Countrey dureing the War.
Should Any thing Elce worth your Notice Occur, whilst I am permited the Honour of Addressing you, You may depend on being duly Advised In term. I Am Respectfully Dear Sir Your Most Obed' Humble sert,
[signed] Robt Montgomery
{ 196 }
As I dont take the Liberty of Writeing Dr. Franklin Pray Present My Complements and best Respects to that Gentleman.
Arrived here Last Tuesday the Brigantine Mary Amilia Capn. French from St. Johns N F Land with fish who off the Western Islands spoak the Eagle of 74 Guns Capn. Duncan from N. York to England haveing Lord Howe on board haveing Left Admiral Byron in Command.2
1. Montgomery had taken an oath of allegiance at Passy on 8 Sept. (Cal. Franklin Papers, A.P.S., 4:272).
2. Howe had resigned his command on 11 Sept. and sailed for England on the 25th (Gruber, Howe Brothers, p. 322, 324).
Cite web page as: Founding Families: Digital Editions of the Papers of the Winthrops and the Adamses, ed.C. James Taylor. Boston: Massachusetts Historical Society, 2018.