of making that Soap. It may be of use to him, and 'tis pity it should be lost.
Some knowing Ones here in Matters of Weather predict a hard Winter. Permit me to have the Pleasure of helping to keep you warm. Lay in a good Stock of Firewood, and draw upon me for the Amount. Your Bill shall be paid upon Sight, by
Your affectionate Brother
The Family join in Love
to you and yours--
[Printed first, and hitherto only, in Duane, Letters to Benjamin Franklin, pp. 149-150; here printed from the manuscript in the American Philosophical Society. The "Poor Distracted State" of Massachusetts was then involved in what has come to be called Shays's Rebellion. Josiah Flagg never learned the art of making crown soap, but remained in Lancaster, where he married Dolly Thurston on June 7, 1809, and had six children. From 1801 to 1835, except for the year 1825, he was town clerk of Lancaster, and he died February 11, 1840, aged seventy- nine. The Birth, Marriage and Death Register . . . of Lancaster, Massachusetts ( 1890), edited by Henry S. Nourse, 1890, pp. 130, 181.]
Boston Oct 12--1786
I am sorry you are Pesterd with Law disputes in your old Age but as that is the case it is well you have Plenty of Ground to Inlarge your Present Dwelling it will not only be an Amusement but in all Probelilety a sample of many Ingenious contrivances for others to Profit by in Future. I Imagin Part of your Plan will be to have a Front Dore, Entry & Stare case, to go all the way up to your Lodging Rooms & Garretts; besides a Pasage from the mane Hous as I sopose thro won of your best chamber closets which will be saifer in case of Fier. I shall Expect Mrs Bache to Inform me how it is Decorated when Finished if I live so long which it is Proble Enouf I may not. It is a Favourable circumstance that you can sometimes forgit you are grown old otherwise it might chick you in many Usefull