Diary of Charles Francis Adams, volume 8

Saturday 29th.

383 Chronology Chronology
Charles Francis Adams, 1836–1840

Resides in Boston with wife and three children at 3 Hancock Avenue and maintains an office at 23 Court Street.

1836 June 15–July 22 Travels to Niagara with wife ABA, via the Hudson River and Erie Canal, then to Montreal and Quebec, and returns via Saratoga and Lebanon Springs.
1836 July 24, 25 His article “The Slavery Question Truly Stated,” completed before his departure, is published in the Boston Daily Advocate.
1836 July 11 President Jackson orders the Treasury to issue the Specie Circular, which made gold and silver the “sole acceptable payment for public lands” and led to hoarding and weakened confidence in the state banks.
1836 Aug. 2 – Nov. 1 His annual summer residence at the Old House in Quincy with JQA and LCA continues while construction proceeds on his new house, nearby, for the growing family.
1836 Sept. 1 – 24 His series in five numbers supporting the election of Van Buren, entitled “To the Unpledged Voters” and signed “One of the People,” is published in the Advocate.
1836 Sept. 3 JQA presents to him the “Pine Tree, Deer, and Fish” seal crafted in London in 1816 by JA’s order to emblemize JA’s contributions to the definitive treaty of peace with Great Britain in 1783 and JQA’s success in reasserting the same rights in the Treaty of Ghent in 1814.
1836 Nov. 2 His article supporting the candidacy for Congress of A. H. Everett, entitled “A Word for the Wise” and signed “A Friend to Mr. Everett,” is published in the Norfolk Advertiser.
1836 Nov. 14 JQA is reelected to the House of Representatives from the 12th Massachusetts District with scattered opposition.
1836 Dec. 7 Martin Van Buren is elected president.
384 1837
1837 Jan. 25 – Feb. 8 His series in six numbers, with the title “Mr. Webster and the Currency and signed “A,” is published in the Boston Daily Advocate.
1837 Feb. His pamphlet Reflections Upon the Present State of the Currency, Boston, 1837, 34 p., a reworking of “Mr. Webster and the Currency” and including additional papers not printed in that series, is published. Efforts to expel or censure JQA for his persistent effort in the House of Representatives to introduce petitions from women and slaves in defiance of the “gag rules” adopted in May 1836 fail after bitter debate.
1837 March 13 His article on the collectorship of the port of Boston is printed as an editorial in the Advocate.
1837 May 10 The New York banks suspend specie payments and are followed by banks at Baltimore, Philadelphia, and Boston.
1837 May 20 Resumes summer residence at the Old House in Quincy, pending completion of his new house in October.
1837 June 17 – 20 His article “Calm Thoughts Upon Our Money Affairs,” signed “A,” is published in the Quincy Patriot.
1837 June 21 In England, Victoria becomes queen.
1837 Aug. 18 Breaks relations with the Advocate over the paper’s editorial support of the Van Buren Administration’s policy on money and banks with which CFA was in profound disagreement.
1837 Sept. 2 – Oct. 7 His series in four numbers, “The Annexation of Texas” signed “One of the People,” the first of his many efforts to prevent admission, is published in the Quincy Patriot.
1837 Oct. 25, Nov. 1 Delivers two lectures in Quincy on the Northern Discoveries, twice repeated for other audiences on later occasions.
1837 Nov.–Feb. Prepares biographical notice of LCA, which would appear with her portrait in vol. 4 of Longacre and Herring, National Portrait Gallery of Distinguished Americans, Phila., 1839.
1837 Dec. 4 Publishes an article signed “One of the Many” in the Boston Morning Post expressing outrage at the murder of abolitionist editor Elijah Lovejoy in Illinois and opposition to the action of Boston officials in denying use of Faneuil Hall for a public meeting of protest.
1837 Dec. 14 Lt. Thomas Boylston Adams Jr., oldest son of JQA’s brother TBA, dies of a fever in Florida while serving in the Second Seminole War.
1837 Dec. 26 Publishes under his own name a pamphlet, Further Reflections Upon the State of the Currency in the United States, Boston, 1837, 41 p., a sequel to his earlier pamphlet but containing no material earlier published.
1838 Jan. 23 Delivers a lecture entitled “Materials for History” upon invitation of the Massachusetts Historical Society at the Masonic Temple, Boston, on the spirit of the American Revolution as seen in the correspondence of AA and JA. During the next two years the lecture would be repeated for eight other audiences. The occasion marks the first time any substantial number of letters from the Adams family archives were communicated to the public.
1838 Feb. 16 Henry Brooks Adams (HA), his fourth child, is born in Boston and later christened in Quincy.
1838 April 17 – 20 His four “Letters to Nicholas Biddle, President of the Bank of the United States,” signed “A Citizen,” are published in the Boston Courier. They undertake to justify his shift from support to opposition of Biddle’s policies, particularly Biddle’s stand against the resumption of specie payments.
1838 April 25 – May 31 Visits Washington, D. C., with ABA and his friend Thomas K. Davis.
1838 May 3 His “Letters to Biddle” are reprinted in the New York Journal of Commerce.
1838 May 11 The Courier publishes his letter signed “A Citizen” restating the independence of his views and clarifying further his position, under attack.
1838 May 14 A disagreement with his friend Davis leads to a complete break in November over whether it is possible to seek political office without thereby sacrificing one’s personal principles to the demands of party.
1838 May 21 The Specie Circular is suspended.
1838 June 13 – Nov. 6 Spends his first complete summer at his new house in Quincy.
1838 Aug. 2–8 His article in the Courier in four parts, “The Democratic Address” signed “A Conservative,” is an unfavorable review of a paper circulated by a committee of Administration supporters in the Congress on currency questions and their bearing upon the slavery issue.
1838 Aug. 17 Publishes in the Courier a rejoinder, signed “A Conservative,” to a Washington Globe attack on his recent four-part article.
1838 Nov. 13 JQA, though opposed, is reelected to the House of Representatives from the 12th Massachusetts District.
1838 Nov. 15 – Dec. 1 His unsigned series in seven numbers directed against Van Buren and Calhoun and titled “Political Speculations Upon the Carolina Policy” is published in the Courier.
1838 Dec. 14 Replies in the Courier to a renewed attack in the Washington Globe on “The Democratic Address.”
1838 Winter To counter ABA’s prolonged malaise, the Adamses participate more actively than in earlier years in Boston’s social season.
1839 Jan. 31 Dispatches to the trustees the 120-page “Catalogue of Brass Coins of the Roman Empire belonging to the Boston Athenaeum” he has had in preparation since Feb. 1838.
1839 March 14–23 His series in four numbers, unsigned, with the title “The Prospect for the Currency,” taking issue with the secretary of the treasury’s report, is published in the Courier.
1839 May 9 His daughter, LCA2, is seriously injured when hit by a wagon.
1839 May 18 – Nov. 6 Renews residence in Quincy.
1839 July His essay-review of Matthew L. Davis’ Memoirs of Aaron Burr and of Burr’s Private Journal is published in the North American Review , and “The State of the Currency, by Charles F. Adams” is published in Hunt’s Merchants’ Magazine .
1839 July 6–18 His unsigned series in four numbers, “The Southern Commercial Conventions,” directed at the anti-Union activities rife in the South, is published in the Courier.
1839 Aug. “The Theory of Money and Banks,” his review of George Tucker’s The Theory of Money and Banks Investigated, is published in Hunt’s. The author’s name is attached to this and to subsequent articles in Hunt’s . Begins preparing a volume of AA’s letters which would be published in 1840, the first fruits of his work on the family papers.
1839 Sept. His “Banks and the Currency” is published in Hunt’s .
1839 Oct. 24 – 29 His article “The Philadelphia Manifesto,” signed “A,” is published in the Courier in three parts.
1839 Oct. 30 Is offered and declines nomination by the whigs for the Massachusetts legislature.
1839 Nov. 20 Georgeanna Frances, the younger child of his dead brother JA2, dies in Quincy.
1839 Dec. His “The State of the Currency,” and amplified version of “The Philadelphia Manifesto,” is published in Hunt’s .
1840 Jan. 7, 9 His letter, unsigned, criticizing the President’s Message, is published in the Courier.
1840 Jan. 20 – 27 Journeys to New York City to address the Mercantile Library Association in Clinton Hall.
1840 Jan. – Feb. Two essays, “The Principles of Credit” and “The Politics of the Puritans,” are completed. The first would be published in the March issue of Hunt’s , the second in the April issue of the North American Review .