The Life and Letters of John Paul Jones - Vol. 2

By Anna De Koven | Go to book overview

CHAPTER XX
THE "ARIEL"

ALTHOUGH Franklin, ill in his bed with an attack of gout, undoubtedly aggravated by his many annoyances, refused absolutely to aid Jones in his efforts to procure additional ships from the French Government, he did not neglect issuing orders for the enrolment of various American seamen at Saint Malo and Morlaix, who were forthwith engaged by Jones to man the Ariel. He also abetted Jones's efforts for the payment of the wages of his seamen by a personal request to Sartine that the usual regulations as to the settlement of wages in America should in this case be disregarded and the money be advanced from the funds in the possession of M. de Chaumont. As a result of a sharp correspondence with Montplaisir, M. de Chaumont's agent at L'Orient, an account of the seamen's dues was finally procured by Jones, and the forty-five men of the Bon Homme Richard who had remained with him in the Ariel received their wages. Official despatches for America were sent to L'Orient, and Franklin now confidently expected that the ship would depart with its stores for America, but Jones found it impossible yet to relinquish his hopes of getting hold of the Serapis, which still lay in the harbor, and wrote urgently to Bancroft to ask that all possible influence should be used with

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