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Browsing: Papers of John Adams, Volume 7


Docno: ADMS-06-07-02-0047

Author: Adams, John
Recipient: Franklin, Benjamin
Date: 1778-09-22

To Benjamin Franklin

[salute] Sir

<In order that <I> We may <be> understand one another,> Upon looking over the Account1 of the Expenditure of the Money for which We have jointly drawn upon the Banker Since my Arrival at Passi, I find some Articles charged, for Similar ones to which I have paid in my seperate Capacity. I dont mean to be difficult about these Things but that <each of Us may> We may have a Plan, for the future, I beg leave to propose. That the Wages and Expences of the Maitre D'hotel and Cook, and of all the servants, their Cloaths and every other Expence for them, the Wages, Cloaths and other Expences of the Coachman, the Hire of the Horses and Carriage, the Expences of Postage of Letters, of Expresses to Versailles and Paris, and else where of Stationary Ware, and all the Expences of the Family, should be paid out of the Money to be drawn from the Banker by our joint order.
If to these, Dr. Franklin chuses to add the, Washer womans Accounts, for our servants &c. as well as ourselves, I have no objection. Receipts to be taken for Payments of Money, and each Party furnished with a Copy of the Account and a sight of the Recipts once a Month if he desires it.
The Expence of a Clerk for each, may be added if Dr. Franklin pleases or this may be a seperate Expence, as he chuses.
Expences for Cloaths Books and other Things and transient pocket Expences to be seperate.
Or if any other Plan is more agreable to Dr. Franklin, Mr. Adams begs him to propose it.
The accounts for our sons at school may be added if Dr. Franklin chooses it, to the General Account—or other wise. For my own Part, when I left America I expected, and had no other Thought, but to be at the Expence of My sons subsistence and Education here in my private Capacity, and I shall still be very contented to do this, if Congress should desire it. But while other Gentlemen are maintaining and educating large familys here, and enjoying the exquisite Felicity of their Company at the Same time, perhaps Congress may think it proper to allow this Article to Us as well as to them, and I am sure I do not desire it, nor would I choose to accept it, if it was not allowed to { 63 } others, altho, perhaps the Duties Labours and Anxieties of our station may be <as> greater <as that of> than those of others.2
I am sir your Inmate and obedient servant
1. These were the household accounts for the period from 9 April to 24 Aug. (vol. 6:16–20) that JA had received from William Temple Franklin on 13 Sept. (JA to Benjamin Franklin, [6] Sept., above).
2. JQA and Benjamin Franklin's grandson, Benjamin Franklin Bache, attended the private boarding school kept by M. Le Coeur in Passy (Adams Family Correspondence, 3:15). The question about payments for their education presumably arose from JA's discovery, when he examined the household accounts, that 451.18 livres had been paid on 23 April for “Benjamin F. Bache's Schooling” (vol. 6:16), whereas JA had paid Le Coeur 365.5 livres on 11 June from his own funds (JA, Diary and Autobiography, 2:329). The household accounts for 1 Oct. 1778 – 23 Feb. 1779 (below) indicate that later payments, on 14 Oct. and 22 Dec., were made from the Commissioners' funds, but when JA submitted his accounts to the congress these expenditures were disapproved (JCC, 15:1383).

Docno: ADMS-06-07-02-0048

Author: Williams, Jonathan
Recipient: Franklin, Benjamin
Recipient: Lee, Arthur
Recipient: Adams, John
Recipient: First Joint Commission at Paris
Date: 1778-09-22

Jonathan Williams to the Commissioners

[salute] Honble Gentlemen

When I had the honour to lay my Accounts before you, I left the general one unfooted intending to compleat it after Examination. I now send it properly closed and settled to the 30th May 1778.1
You have also inclosed the account of the Magazine, Invoice of Arms repaired, and your general Account since that Period, all settled to the 10th September 1778, Balance in your Favour seven thousand three hundred eighty Six Livres 18/9. I have since received a Bill for Bayonnet Sheaths use in the magazine amounting to three thousand three hundred ninety one Livres 12. This with the Articles mentioned at the Foot of the general Account will leave a Balance of about eleven thousand Livres in my Favour, for which I shall take the Liberty to draw on you giving advice accordingly.
Duplicates of all my Accounts are transmitted to Congress.
I am sorry to inform you that the Dispatch Capt Barnes who sailed from this port the 29th Ultimo is taken and carried into Guernsey.
I have the Honour to be with great Respect Honble Gentlemen Your most obedient & most humble Servant
[signed] Jona Williams
RC (PPAmP: Franklin Papers); docketed by William Temple Franklin: “F.8. Mr. Williams Lettr. Sept. 1778.”
1. Jonathan Williams' accounts with the Commissioners for the period from 12 May 1777 to 30 May 1778 are in the Lee Papers at the University of Virginia (Lee Family Papers, Microfilms, Reel 3, f. 767–772). Included with these accounts are others dealing with such matters as the repair of arms, the outfitting of ships, { 64 } and the merchandise consigned to Williams that he still had on hand or had sent to America (same, f. 773–805). These accounts should be compared with those in Foreign Ledgers, Public Agents in Europe, 1776–1787 (DNA, RG 39 [Microfilm], f. 25, 51, 53). None of the accounts mentioned by Williams below have been found.
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, 2014.
http://www.masshist.org/apde2/