Morning to town, Conversation with my father upon his property. Many very heavy calls upon it just at present. Then upon my Marriage. He made me a present this morning of three portraits. One of my Grandfather painted by Stuart and exceedingly valuable, and those of my father and Mother by the same artist but not so good.1 I was surprised and pleased. They are now in the possession of Mr. Cruft and I must attend to their being shortly transferred.
Then I rode to town. At the Office. Found there Mr. Conant from 427the farm at Weston, who came to tell me that he was apprehensive he should be unable to keep it on his lease.2 I regretted this very much and conversed with him much. He appeared discouraged and said the farm would be likely to run him in debt. It was always a matter of apprehension to me that I should find it so with my father. But I tried to encourage him by telling him that he now saw the worst side and that it would improve. He left me doubtful as to what he intended to do. I feel as if this was going to be a trouble to us.
Then came Mr. Farmer, who went over a long and disgusting detail of old affairs in attempting to clear himself which I did not believe he could do. What the purpose of it was I cannot say but having found that I was not likely to give way to extortion, he changed his ground and tried apology. I told him I wished to be rid of the business as soon as possible. My poor brother had involved himself beyond redemption among a parcel of very indifferent characters. Thus my morning was wholly taken up, and after seeing Mr. Degrand upon some investment my father wished to make, I went to see Mr. Brooks, and decided upon going out to see Abby at any rate to day. I therefore went before dinner with him. Found Abby as usual and passed a very pleasant afternoon and evening with her as usual. Conversation about the future and our prospects.
Gilbert Stuart’s celebrated portrait of JA in old age, 1823 (now owned by C. F. Adams of Dover, Mass.), and his matching portraits of JQA and LCA painted in 1818 (now owned by Mrs. Arthur Adams of Charles River Village, Mass.).
Amory and Silas Conant leased the farm at Weston for $125 a year (JQA, Diary, 28 July 1829; CFA, Accounts as Manager of John Quincy Adams’ Finances, 1828–1846, p. 31, M/CFA/3, Adams Papers, Microfilms, Reel No. 297).