Front Page Titles (by Subject) CLXXX: TO JOHN HUGHES - The Works of Benjamin Franklin, Vol. III Letters and Misc. Writings 1753-1763
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CLXXX: TO JOHN HUGHES - Benjamin Franklin, The Works of Benjamin Franklin, Vol. III Letters and Misc. Writings 1753-1763 
The Works of Benjamin Franklin, including the Private as well as the Official and Scientific Correspondence, together with the Unmutilated and Correct Version of the Autobiography, compiled and edited by John Bigelow (New York: G.P. Putnam’s Sons, 1904). The Federal Edition in 12 volumes. Vol. III (Letters and Misc. Writings 1753-1763).
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TO JOHN HUGHES
London, 7 January, 1760.
On my return from our northern journey I found several of your obliging favors, for which please to accept my hearty thanks. There has been for some time a talk of peace, and probably we should have had one this winter, if the King of Prussia’s late misfortunes had not given the enemy fresh spirits, and encouraged them to try their luck another campaign, and exert all their remaining strength, in hopes of treating with Hanover in their hands. If this should be the case, possibly most of our advantages may be given up again at the treaty, and some among our great men begin already to prepare the minds of people for this, by discoursing that to keep Canada would draw on us the envy of other powers, and occasion a confederation against us; that the country is too large for us to people; not worth possessing, and the like. These notions I am every day and every hour combating, and I think not without some success. The event God only knows. The argument that seems to have the principal weight is, that, in case of another war, if we keep possession of Canada, the nation will save two or three millions a year, now spent in defending the American colonies, and be so much the stronger in Europe, by the addition of the troops now employed on that side of the water. To this I add, that the colonies would thrive and increase in a much greater degree, and that a vast additional demand would arise for British manufactures to supply so great an extent of Indian territory, with many other topics, which I urge occasionally, according to the company I happen into, or the persons I address. And, on the whole, I flatter myself that my being here at this time may be of some service to the general interest of America.
The acts of last year have all come to hand, but not all in a condition to be laid before the King for his approbation, as the governor’s proposed amendments are tacked to them, and no distinction as to which were agreed to, or whether any or none; so that, in some of the most material acts, there is no ascertaining what is intended to be law or what not. This mistake was fallen into, I suppose, from the late practice of sending home the bills refused by the governor, with his proposed amendments certified by the clerk of the House, and under the great seal, that the true state of such refused bills might be known here; but, when bills are passed into laws, the copies to be sent here should be taken from the Rolls Office after the laws are deposited there, and certified by the Master of the Rolls to be true copies; and then the governor, under the great seal, certifies that the Master of the Rolls is such an officer, and that credit ought to be given to his certificate; or otherwise that those copies are true copies, agreeable to the laws passed by him as governor. But the certificates with these laws only express that such bills were sent up to him for his assent on such a day; that he proposed the annexed amendment on such a day, and on such a day he passed the bills without saying a word whether the amendments were agreed to or not. Indeed, by the part of the minutes which came1 ——
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