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Browsing: Papers of John Adams, Volume 12

Docno: ADMS-06-12-02-0186

Author: Adams, John
Recipient: Franklin, Benjamin
Date: 1782-03-10

To Benjamin Franklin

[salute] Sir

Should the British Forces now in New York and Charlestown evacuate those Places and go to the West India Islands, they might give a good deal of Trouble to the French and Spanish Possessions there. It would cost those Powers many Men and Ships and a great deal of Money and Time perhaps to manage them: whereas a Fleet and a Sum of Money now well directed would infallibly make Prisoners of the whole.
After the Address and Resolutions of the Commons, can it be thought they will be so stupid as to keep those Armies inactive in New York and Charlestown? If they do it will be merely to protect Commissioners whom they may send to propose Terms of a seperate Peace to Congress. In this Case the short and easy Method with the Dissenters is to take Warriors and Peacemakers altogether Prisoners in New York.

[salute] With Great Respect I have the Honour to be, sir, your most obedient and most humble Servant

[signed] J. Adams1
RC in John Thaxter’s hand ( (PHi:Franklin Coll.)); endorsed on the first page: “answd March 31”; on the third page: “J. Adams, March 10. 1782.”
1. The closing and the signature are in JA’s hand.

Docno: ADMS-06-12-02-0187

Author: Adams, John
Recipient: Lafayette, Marie-Joseph-Paul-Yves-Roch-Gilbert du Motier, marquis de
Date: 1782-03-10

To the Marquis de Lafayette

[salute] My dear General

The Proceedings, of late in the British Parliament, I think abundantly prove, that the British Troops will evacuate N. York and Charlestown, and go to Quebeck Hallifax and the West India Islands provided they can escape in the Course of the ensuing Summer.
It cannot be a Question, with any Sensible Man, whether it will cost most Time, Blood and Treasure to France and Spain to take them all Prisoners, where they now are, or to fight them in detail in the West India Islands. No Man knows better than you what is necessary, in order to Strike this Sublime Stroke and thus finish the War, viz a Superiour Fleet, and a good sum of Money.
The Prov. of Friesland has taken the Resolution to acknowledge the Sovereignty of the United States of America, and to give Audi• { 304 } ence to their Minister, and have communicated to the States General. Holland has committed the same subject to the Comee. for great affairs, and the Body of Nobles and all the Cities have it under deliberation. Guelderland, Zealand and Overijssel too have taken the Resolution of Friesland into Consideration.1

[salute] With great Affection and Esteem, I have &c

1. This paragraph was interlined by John Thaxter.
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.