Where liberty dwells, there is my country.
H.L. Mencken attributed this popular statement to Benjamin Franklin, written in a March 14, 1783 letter to Benjamin Vaughan. That letter, however, has not been located. Bartlett’s Familiar Quotations notes this was the motto of James Otis (Latin: Ubi libertas, ibi patria; the 1780 A Complete Book of Heraldry marks it as the motto of Daniel Huger, Esq. Many early biographies of Thomas Paine portray Ben Franklin mystically speaking these words to Paine. The slogan has also been attributed to Algernon Sidney, the forgotten founding father. In “Defining Liberty: An Analysis of Its Three Elements” (ABA Journal, April 1965), Wendell J. Brown identified John Milton as its author. Which is why we picture the great poet, above. Help in correctly citing priority for this great quotation would be greatly appreciated.