“Our new Constitution is now established,
everything seems to promise it will be durable;
but, in this world, nothing is certain except death and taxes.”
~ Ben Franklin ~
Digitally enhanced image created from a photo of the plaque commemorating the signing of the final Treaty of Paris, on September 3rd, 1783 on the wall of the Hotel d’York taken in Paris in November 2007.
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Ben Franklin resided in Paris for nine years. He was much admired by the French and was seen and treated as quite the celebrity after his arrival in mid-December 1776. During his time there he also, along with John Adams and John Jay, participated in the signing of the final Treaty of Paris, on September 3rd 1783. This historic moment took place in the Hotel d’York, a small building that still stands at 56 Rue Jacob in the seventh arrondissement. At this signing the independence of the United States was fully recognized by England and the rest of the world. And though this plaque commemorates the event, few people who pass this small building’s façade are aware of the historic event that took place within. The local shops, with their expensive fashions, shoes, ceramics and jewelry, are all much more interesting to the tourists. Franklin returned to the United States in 1785, leaving Thomas Jefferson to try to nudge some common sense about liberty and freedom into the French aristocracy, before the Bastille came tumbling down and the French Revolution descended into the Reign of Terror…