Diary of Charles Francis Adams, volume 5

Wednesday. 14th.

Friday. 16.

Thursday. 15. CFA Thursday. 15. CFA
Thursday. 15.

Weather cold and cheerless. We have frosts every morning which are likely to do great injury. I accompanied Mr. Brooks to town or rather he went with me. Time passed very quietly in reading Jefferson, whose letters as he goes on become more interesting. In one of them he gives the characters of several leading members of the Revolutionary party—My grandfather among the number, upon whom he is somewhat sharp. There is some justice however in a portion of his criticism. The letter gives some insight into the course of Jefferson’s subsequent life.

Received a letter from my father giving me orders to transmit the sum of money I had nursed so carefully to pay Isaac Hull, to Washington.1 Such is my compensation for taking care of his interest. Every thing that comes from Washington deeply mortifies me. Why should I take any pains to do any thing? Why should I not strive to turn my situation to my own account? There would be at least advantage in that? This heavy burden of debt is to continue the same.

Home to dinner. Afternoon, reading Madame de Stael, Ovid, Laodamia to Protesilaus. Evening the same. I pass about an hour of every morning reading Italian.

1.

JQA to CFA, 10 May (Adams Papers). CFA had succeeded in accumulating in JQA’s account, $3,125, the sum due Isaac Hull Adams under his grandfather’s will on Hull’s twenty-first birthday. On 15 April JQA had written Hull at West Point (LbC, Adams Papers) offering him his choice of receiving the full sum in cash on his birthday or allowing the principal to be retained by JQA at 6 percent interest. To this Hull replied on 21 April, electing the latter with the quarterly interest to be paid to his mother. JQA carried out his wishes, executing a series of promissory notes (JQA to Isaac Hull Adams, 22 May 1834, LbC, Adams Papers). Without reference to his communications with Hull, JQA asked CFA to transfer to him in Washington $3,000 of the sum that had been earmarked. CFA expressed his regret over this course in his reply to JQA on 18 May (LbC, Adams Papers). See also JQA to CFA, 28 May (Adams Papers).