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given to the inhabitants of the city accepting the whole, to be applied to the same purposes, and under the same regulations directed for the separate parts; and, if both refuse, the money of course remains in the mass of my estate, and is to be disposed of therewith according to my will made the seventeenth day of July, 1788.
I wish to be buried by the side of my wife, if it may be, and that a marble stone, to be made by Chambers, six feet long, four feet wide, plain, with only a small moulding round the upper edge, and this inscription,
to be placed over us both. My fine crabtree walking-stick, with a gold head curiously wrought in the form of the cap of liberty, I give to my friend, and the friend of mankind, General Washington. If it were a sceptre, he has merited it and would become it. It was a present to me from that excellent woman, Madame de Forbach, the Dowager Duchess of Deux-Ponts, connected with some verses, which should go with it. I give my gold watch to my son-in-law Richard Bache, and also the gold watch-chain of the thirteen United States, which I have not yet worn. My time-piece, that stands in my library, I give to my grandson, William Temple Franklin. I give him also my Chinese gong. To my dear old friend, Mrs. Mary Hewson, I give one of my silver tankards marked, for her use during her life, and after her decease I give it to her daughter Eliza. I give to her son, William Hewson, who is my godson, my new quarto bible, Oxford edition, to be for his family bible, and also the botanic description of the plants in the Emperor's garden at Vienna, in folio, with colored cuts. And to her son, Thomas Hewson, I give a set of Spectators, Tatlers, and Guardians, handsomely bound. There is an error in my will, where the bond of William Temple Franklin is mentioned as being for four thousand pounds sterling, whereas it is but for three thousand five hundred pounds. I give to my executors, to be divided equally among those that act, the sum of sixty pounds sterling, as some compensation for their trouble in the execution of my will; and I request my friend, Mr. Duffield, to accept moreover my French Wayweiser, a piece of
clockwork in brass, to be fixed to the wheel of any carriage; and that my friend, Mr. Hill, may also accept my silver cream-pot, formerly given to me by the good Dr. Fothergill, with the motto, Keep bright the chain. My reflecting telescope, made by Short, which was formerly Mr. Canton's, I give to my friend, Mr. David Rittenhouse, for the use of his observatory. My picture, drawn by Martin in 1767, I give to the Supreme Executive Council of Pennsylvania, if they shall be pleased to do me the honor of accepting it, and placing it in their chamber. Since my will was made, I have bought some more city lots near the centre part of the estate of Joseph Dean. I would have them go with the other lots, disposed of in my will; and I do give the same to my son-in-law, Richard Bache, his heirs and assigns forever. In addition to the annuity left to my sister in my will, of fifty pounds sterling during her life, I now add thereto ten pounds sterling more, in order to make the sum sixty pounds. I give twenty guineas to my good friend and physician, Dr. John Jones. With regard to the separate bequests made to my daughter Sarah in my will, my intention is, that the same shall be for her sole and separate use, notwithstanding her coverture, or whether she be covert or sole; and I do give my executors so much right and power therein, as may be necessary to render my intention effectual in that respect only. This provision for my daughter is not made out of any disrespect I have for her husband. And lastly, it is my desire, that this my present codicil be annexed to, and considered as part of, my last will and testament to all intents and purposes. In witness whereof, I have hereunto set my hand and seal this twenty-third day of June, anno Domini one thousand seven hundred and eighty-nine. B. FRANKLiN. Signed, sealed, published, and declared by the abovenamed Benjamin Franklin to be a Codicil to his last will and testament, in the presence of us FRANcis BAILEY, Thomas LANg, ABRAHAM Shor:MAKER.
NOTE BY THE EDITOR.
The experiment of nearly half a century has not produced all the beneficial results, which were anticipated by Dr. Franklin, from his bequest to Boston and Philadelphia. The following is an extract from a printed Report of the Com mittee of Legacies and Trusts, made in the Common Council of Philadelphia April 27th, 1837, by Mr. John Thomason, chairman of the Committee. “From official returns,” says the Report, “it appears, that up to the 1st of January, 1837, the fund has been borrowed by one hundred and ninetythree individuals, in sums mostly of $260 each. At that date, the fund was in the hands of one hundred and twelve beneficiaries, of whom nineteen have paid neither principal nor interest, although the accounts of some of them have been open for a period of thirty-four years. Ninety other persons stand indebted in sums from $ 21 to $292; and three, having borrowed with in the year, were not, at the last-mentioned date, liable to any demand by the trustees. Of these one hundred and nine cases of non-compliance with the terms of the will, fifty-eight bonds may be subject to a plea of the statute of limitation, and the rest are still valid. In this condition of the fund, it becomes difficult to estimate its present value. Should all the debts be recovered, the amount of the fund would be $23,627.09; but, from the length of time elapsed since the date of many of those bonds, such a result is hopeless; and even this latter sum, large as it is, is below the amount it would have attained at this time, had the intentions of the testator been fully carried out. The original bequest of $ 4,444:44, at compound interest for forty-five years, would be $ 39,83329; and, although the immediate conversion of interest into principal, as the former becomes due, is not always practicable, yet it is believed, that, with careful management, the fund would, at this time, have lacked but little of that amount. How far the fund falls short, may be partly judged from the actual receipts on account of this legacy for the last ten years. During that time the sum of $16,191.92 has been paid in. As this period included the term for lending out, and receiving back with interest, the whole fund, the receipts within that term may be taken as a safe approximation to its real calue; to which must be added the sum to be obtained through the enforcing of payment, by legal process, from such securities as may be good at this late day. Had the fund been placed at simple interest, it would have amounted to the last-mentioned sum by this time. “Had the requirements of the will been, in former years, fully complied with, the operation of the fund, at this day, would be sensibly felt by the mechanics of Philadelphia. Passing from one borrower to another, and increasing in a compound ratio, its effect would be to stimulate useful industry, which, without such capital, would have remained unproductive. It would have increased the number of those who do business on their own stock. It would be a standing lesson on the immutable connexion between capital and productive industry, thus constantly inciting to economy and prudence. It would have become the reward of every faithful apprentice, who could look forward to a participation in its benefit. It is deeply to be regretted, that this state of things, which had so captivated the imagination of Franklin that he devoted a portion of his hard-earned wealth to realize it for the mechanics of Philadelphia, should, in the emphatic language of his will, prove “a vain fancy.’” By this statement it would seem, that there had been at some time a remarkable want of fidelity in administering the trust, especially in allowing so large a number of bonds to become worthless by the statute of limitation, and neglecting to make seasonable demands upon the sureties. Appended to the same report is a letter from Mr. William Minot, treasurer of the Franklin Fund in Boston, dated December 23d, 1836, which contains the following state of the fund in that city. “The whole number of loans from this Fund,” Mr. Minot says, “from May, 1791, to the present time, has been 255, in sums varying from $ 70 to $206 up to the year 1800, since which time they have usually been $200. “From July, 1811, to the present time, the number of loans has been 91, of which 50, at least, have been repaid (in whole or in part) by sureties, and on four of these are balances which cannot be collected, both principals and sureties being insolvent. “Dr. Franklin's donation was £1,000 sterling. The present value of the Fund, is as follows;
“Estimate of 13 bonds, considered good, - - - $ 1,428.68
“Amount deposited, on interest, in the office of the Massachusetts
“It is apparent, from these facts, that the benevolent intentions of the donor have not been realized, and that, in the present condition of our country, it is not advantageous to married mechanics, under the age of twentyfour years, to borrow money to be repaid in easy instalments, at a low rate of interest; and the improvidence of early marriages, among that class of men, may fairly be inferred. “The great number of instances, in which sureties have been obliged to pay the loans, has rendered it not so easy, as formerly, for applicants to obtain the required security. This is proved by the small number of loans from the fund, averaging for the last five years, not more than one a year. “Until within the last twenty years, no great care was taken in accumulating the fund. It is now carefully attended to; and money not required for actual use is placed in the Life Insurance Company, where it increases at the rate of about five and one-third per cent a year. “The loans are made at the rate of five per cent, but, on instalments past due, six per cent is charged, from the time they were payable, and the bonds of delinquents are put in suit after reasonable notice. Two sureties, at least, are required on each bond.” According to the treasurer's return on the 1st of January, 1840, the amount of the fund in Boston was at that time as follows.
Deposited in the Life Insurance office, - - - $26,595-64 Bonds for Loans - - - - - - 1,846:35 $28,441.99