September 22, 2011
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This lot is closed for bidding. Bidding ended on 9/22/2011
FRANKLIN, Benjamin (1706-1790) American Printer, Author, Inventor, Scientist, Statesman, Philanthropist, Diplomat and Signer of The Declaration of Independence. In 1776, Franklin went to France to help negotiate treaties of commerce and alliance, signed in 1778. Lionized there, he remained as plenipotentiary, won financial aid for the American Revolution, and then helped negotiate a peace treaty with Great Britain, signed in Paris in 1783. War-dated partly printed Document Signed "B. Franklin Presidt," one page, 13" x 8-1/2", Philadelphia, October 4, 1775 [mistakenly dated 1755]. Expertly restored, including infill at left of about a half dozen letters, including holograph, in each line and undetectable restoration of engrossment and signatures. Fine appearance of a very rare and important early Revolutionary War document. Headed "IN COMMITTEE OF SAFETY." In full, "To John Hennessy Gentleman [W]E reposing especial trust and confidence in your Patriotism, Valour, Conduct and Fidelity, DO by these Presents constitute and appoint you to be Lieutenant of the Provincial ARMED BOAT called the [Effin]gham fitted out for the Protection of the Province of PENNSYLVANIA and the Commerce of the Ri[ver DEL]AWARE, against all Hostile Enterprizes, and for the Defense of AMERICAN LIBERTY: You are therefore to [take the] said Boat into your charge, and carefully and diligently to discharge the duty of Lieutenant [And by doin]g and performing all manner of things thereunto belonging. And we do strictly charge and require all [Officers,] Soldiers and Mariners under your command, to be obedient to your orders, as Lieutenant And [you are ]to observe, and follow such orders and directions from time to time, as you shall receive from the As[sembly ]or Provincial Convention, during their sessions, or from this or a future Committee of Safety for this [Provinc]e, or from your superior Officer, according to the Rules and Discipline of War, pursuant to the trust [reposed ]in you; this Commission to continue in force until revoked by the Assembly or Provincial Conventi[on, or b]y this or any succeeding Committee of Safety. [Phi]ladelphia October 4t h 1755. [W]m Govett Secty. B. Franklin Presidt." On August 26, 1775, at a meeting of the Committee of Safety appointed by the Assembly of the Province of Pennsylvania, rules and regulations were issued regarding the provisions to be instituted in carrying out the resolution of Congress. The exact printed text of the document here offered were in the minutes. Following the text it was "Ordered, That Mr. Bradford print on good paper, one hundred of the Commissions of Officers to be employed on Board the armed Boats." Dated just six weeks later, ostensibly, this is one of the one hundred printed.
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Less than six months after Lexington and Concord, Benjamin Franklin commissions an officer of a Provincial Armed Boat for the protection of the Province of Pennsylvania … and for the defense of

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Minimum Bid: $5,000.00
Final prices include buyers premium.:
Auction closed on Thursday, September 22, 2011.
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