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[172] the king's pleasure ‘that a fund be established
chap. VII.} 1754.
for the benefit of all the colonies collectively in North America.’1

Men in England expected obedience; but in December, Delancey referred to ‘the general opinion of the congress at Albany, that the colonies would differ in their measures and disagree about their quotas; without the interposition of the British parliament to oblige them,’ nothing would be done.2

In the same moment, Shirley, at Boston, was planning how the common fund could be made efficient; and to Franklin—who, in December, 1754, revisited the region in which he drew his first breath, and spent his earliest and most pleasant days,—he submitted a new scheme of union. A congress of governors and delegates from the councils was to be invested with power at their meetings to adopt measures of defence, and to draw for all necessary moneys on the treasury of Great Britain, which was to be reimbursed by parliamentary taxes on America.

‘The people in the colonies,’ replied Franklin,3 ‘are better judges of the necessary preparations for defence, and their own abilities to bear them. Governors often come to the colonies merely to make fortunes, with which they intend to return to Britain; are not always men of the best abilities or integrity; have no natural connection with us, that should make them heartily concerned for our welfare.’ ‘The councillors in most of the colonies are appointed by ’

1 Sir T. Robinson's Circular of 26 Oct., 1754.

2 Lieut. Gov. Delancey to the Lords of Trade, 15 Dec. 1754.

3 Franklin to Shirley, 17 Dec. and 18 Dec. 1754, in Works, III, 57, 58.

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