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Adams Family Papers : An Electronic Archive
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John Adams autobiography, part 1, "John Adams," through 1776
sheet 53 of 53, 19 August 1776

With regard to Encouragements in Money and in land, for Soldiers to inlist during the War, I have ever been in favour of it as the best Oeconomy and the best policy: and I have no doubt, that rewards in Land, will be given after the War is over. But the Majority are not of my mind, for promising, of it, now. . . . I am the less anxious about it, for a reason, which does not seem to have much weight, however, with the majority: Although, it may cost us more, and We may put now and then, a battle, to a hazard, by the method We are in, Yet We shall be less in danger of Corruption and Violence, from a Standing Army, and our Militia will acquire Courage, Experience, Discipline and hardiness in actual Service. I wish every Man upon the Continent was a Soldier, and obliged upon Occasion to fight, and determined to conquer or to die.
Flight was unknown to the Romans. . . . I wish it was to Americans. There was a flight from Quebec, and worse than a flight from the C dars. If We dont attone for these disgraces, We are undone.
A more exalted Love of their Country; a more enthusiastic Ardor for military Glory; a deeper detestation, disdain, and horror of martial disgrace must be excited among our People, or We shall perish in Infamy infamy. . . . I will certainly give my Voice for devoting to the infernal Gods, every man, high or low, who shall be convicted of bashfulness, in the day of battle.
Gen. Parsons.
P.S. Since I Wrote the above was written, Congress has accepted the Report of the Board of War, and appointed Dier and Chapman, Majors. I had much pleasure in promoting Dier, not only from his own excellent Character, but from respect to my good friend his father.

Cite web page as: John Adams autobiography, part 1, "John Adams," through 1776, sheet 53 of 53 [electronic edition]. Adams Family Papers: An Electronic Archive. Massachusetts Historical Society. http://www.masshist.org/digitaladams/
Original manuscript: Adams, John. John Adams autobiography, part 1, "John Adams," through 1776. Part 1 is comprised of 53 sheets and 1 insertion; 210 pages total. Original manuscript from the Adams Family Papers, Massachusetts Historical Society.
Source of transcription: Butterfield, L.H., ed. Diary and Autobiography of John Adams. Vol. 3. Cambridge, Mass. : Harvard University Press, 1961.
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