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resolution not to fight, which these gentlemen have not. Conscience with you, gentlemen, is on the other side of the question : conscience enjoins it as a duty on you (and indeed I think it such on every man) to defend your country, your friends, your aged parents, your wives, and helpless children; and yet you resolve not to perform this duty, but act contrary to your own consciences, because the Quakers act according to theirs. Till of late, I could scarce believe the story of him who refused to pump in à sinking ship, because one on board, whom he hated, would be saved by it as well as himself. But such, it seems, is the unhappiness of human nature, that our passions, when violent, often are too hard for the united force of reason, duty, and religion."
We must subjoin the conclusion of this spirited piece, as containing a strong eulogium on that parent country against which Franklin afterwards was called to act so much like an enemy : 6 All we want is order, discipline, and a few can
At present we are like the separate filaments of flax before the thread is formed, without strength, because without connexion; but union would make us strong, and even formidable, though the great should neither help nor join us; though they should even oppose our uniting, from some mean views of their own, yet, if we resolve upon it, and it please God to inspire us with the necessary prudence and vigour, it may be effected. Great numbers of our people are of British race; and though the fierce fighting animals of those happy islands are said to abate their native fire and intrepidity, when removed to a foreign clime, yet with the people it is not so; our neighbours of New England afford the world a convincing proof, that Britons, though a hundred years transplanted, and to the remotest parts of the earth, may yet retain, even to the third and fourth descent, that zeal for the public good, that military prowess, and that undaunted spirit, which has in every age distinguished their nation. What numbers
have we likewise of those brave people whose fathers in the last age made so glorious a stand for our religion and liberties, when invaded by a powerful French army, joined by Irish Catholics, under a bigoted popish king! Let the memorable siege of Londonderry, and the signal actions of the Inniskillingers, by which the heart of that prince's schemes was broken, be perpetual testimonies of the courage and conduct of those noble warriors! Nor are there wanting amongst us thousands of that warlike nation whose sons have, ever since the time of Cæsar, maintained that character he gave their fathers, of joining the most obstinate courage to all the other military virtues : I mean the brave and steady Germans, numbers of whom have actually borne arms in the service of their respective princes; and if they fought well for their tyrants and oppressors, would they refuse to unite with us in defence of their newly-acquired and most precious liberty and property ? Were this union formed-were we once united, thoroughly armed and disciplined-was every thing in our power done for our security, as far as human means and foresight could provide—we might then, with more propriety, humbly ask the assistance of heaven, and a blessing on our lawful endeavours. The
very fame of our strength and readiness would be a means of discouraging our enemies ; for it is a wise and true saying, that one sword often keeps another in the scabbard. The way to secure peace is to secure war. They that are on their guard, and appear ready to receive their adversaries, are in much less danger of being attacked, than the supine, secure, and negligent. We have yet a winter before us, which may afford a good and almost sufficient opportunity for this, if we seize and improve it with a becoming vigour. And if the hints contained in this paper are so happy as to meet with a suitable disposition of mind in his countrymen and fellow-citizens, the writer of it will in a few days lay before them a form of an association for the purpose herein mentioned, together with a practicable scheme for raising
the money necessary for the defence of our trade, .city, and country, without laying a burthen on any man."
The effect of this appeal was prodigious: it aroused the capital at once. A public meeting was called in Whitfield's preaching-house; and Franklin being requested to produce his promised plan, which was in fact that of a general volunteer militia, twelve hundred signatures to it were obtained on the occasion. In the neighbourhood the flame spread with equal ardour. Copies of the address being promptly circulated, .ten thousand men were soon enrolled, who furnished themselves with arms, elected officers, and formed themselves into a regiment, without any important aid from the government. They met with great punctuality, every week, to learn the manual exercise ; the female part of the community inflaming their gallantry, by providing and presenting them with colours, which were covered with devices and appropriate mottoes supplied by Franklin. The Philadelphia Association requested our author to become their colonel, which he modestly declined in favour of a Mr Lawrence, who was accordingly appointed.
He next contended, that a battery below the town was essential to its security, and proposed to raise a sufficient sum, by lottery, for its erection and support. This scheme also was popular: the shares were taken off immediately; Franklin, Lawrence, and another friend of the measure, were dispatched to New York, to solicit the loan of cannon, until their own should come from England. Some were bought forth with at Boston, and mounted, the merlons being constructed of timber and earth for the present; and the proprietary were solicited for assistance, although with little hope of success. At New York they at first found the governor, sir William Clinton, very unwilling to comply with their request; but, after dinner, Franklin watching the movements of the bottle, and pressing his suit accordingly, six cannon were at first promised, then ten, and, after a few bum
pers more, eighteen" fine 18-pounders," says our author, " which, with the carriages, were soon transported, and mounted on our batteries.” During the rest of the war between Great Britain and Spain, the Association of Philadelphia regularly mounted guard on their batteries every night, and Franklin took his turn there as a common soldier.
Being soon after, in consequence of these efforts, made a member of the governor's council, Franklin proposed to promote the recent measures through the influence of the clergy. A public fast was proclaimed at his suggestion, the pulpit echoed with patriotic addresses, and the enrolling was carried on with great spirit and activity among all classes, except Quakers.
With this respectable part of the community, Franklin's friends began to fear he had embroiled himself hopelessly on this occasion. But he knew them better, it appears. A Mr Logan, a distinguished member of that persuasion, had written an address to the Friends in favour of defensive war, and subscribed sixty pounds to the battery above-mentioned. This gentleman had in his youth accompanied the celebrated William Penn to America, as his private secretary, and gave Franklin the following anecdote of their connexion. Their vessel, in its passage, was chased by a supposed enemy; and the captain pressed the passengers, as well as crew, into his service, except Penn and his associates, whom he expected to find impracticable; but Logan, to his surprise, joined in manning the guns, while the rest of the Quakers retired below. In a short time it was discovered that the vessel bearing down upon them was friendly; and the young secretary, running to inform his master, was rebuked for his apparent willingness to abandon the principles of the Friends on the occasion. Logan replied to him, “I being thy servant, why didst thou not order me to come down? But thou wast willing enough that I should stay to fight the ship, when thou thoughtest there was danger.'
Our author's own experience of the conduct of the
Quakers had given him reason to suppose them not altogether ininical to defensive measures in which they were not called upon to join too directly. During the public fervour respecting the battery, it was proposed that a small sum should be granted by the fire-company in aid of that scheme; but when it was recollected that the Friends were twenty-two in number, out of the thirty of which the company consisted, the minority could hardly hope for success. A meeta ing however was appointed to consider the subject, when the other eight members punctually appeared, with but one Quaker, a Mr Morris. He was strenuous in his opposition, and deprecated even the discussion of the grant, as tending to disturb the long-continued harmony of the company. The hour for proceeding to business at length arrived, and still no increase of Friends. Mr Morris then requested a little delay, for he was quite sure that his brethren were coming. Franklin however states the following strange facts. A waiter called him down to speak with “ two ger tlemen," who proved to be members of their own body. They informed him that at a neighbouring tavern six other Friends were waiting to come with
necessary, and vote for the measure, but that, as it might involve them in disputes with their brethren, they requested not be called upon except in case of necessity. Secure of his ohject, Franklin now returned to the society, and consented to a further delay, which Morris considered as very and after the lapse of an hour, he remaining still unsupported, the measure was carried by eight to one. "Thus as of the twenty-two Quakers, eight were ready to vote with us,” says Franklin, and “eleven, by their absence, manifested that they were not inclined to oppose the measure, I computed that the proportion of Quakers sincerely against the defence, was as one to twenty-one only." Franklin avers distinctly, that his long experience in the Pennsylvanian assembly gave him constant opportunities of observing evasive conduct in the Quakers, and their never-ending em