Diary of Charles Francis Adams, volume 6

Thursday. 13th.

Saturday. 15th.

Friday. 14th. CFA Friday. 14th. CFA
Friday. 14th.

The morning was cloudy with rain at noon. We arose early and hastened to the Steamer Robert Morris which was at the foot of Chesnut Street, bound for Baltimore. Our passage was a quiet one to New Castle where we left the Boat and took the Railroad, which in one hour brought us to Frenchtown. At this moment the weather cleared and we had a lovely day. We arrived at Baltimore shortly after four and concluded to go to the City Hotel and remain there until the morning.

The Cholera has lately broken out here and carried off two or three among the more wealthy and comfortable of society. The Alarm has spread singularly until the public houses have become nearly empty and the citizens are running away.

After a capital supper in which I relished after a six years interval the delicious canvassbacks of these regions, I went out to find Gorham Brooks and his Wife. My direction was so accurate that I found the House without difficulty. They were at home and about to take tea. They were well but evidently fatigued and depressed, the cause of which I soon found to have been their child, who had been suddenly taken the night before with vomiting and had kept them up very anxious through the night. He looked heavy and flushed but took tea and seemed much more lively afterwards. My visit was therefore an unlucky one and yet I lengthened it far beyond my intention. They seemed to be pleased to see me and I thought my conversation would distract their attention from what was evidently the great topic, the Cholera. Their physician Dr. Stewart came in for a few minutes, but was dismissed without seeing the boy. He was rather monosyllabic 11about the disease, whether it was that he had no good to tell or that he was worn out and exhausted by his duties.

I took my leave before ten and threaded the streets home in which I hardly found living thing. The hogs were quietly rooting up the filth which lay in quantities in the Streets highway, but they had the territories pretty much to themselves. This can hardly be natural at such an hour in Baltimore. The night air is thought so dangerous that it has driven people into their houses. The talk, and the loneliness of the walk, reminding me of my imprudence had the effect of making me quite nervous for half an hour after my return. I went to bed and in due time fell asleep.

For the rest, Gorham Brooks is very comfortably settled down in a pretty but not large house. His style is expensive, and must require larger means than the remainder of his family possess. But he was always fond of expense though not of society.