Diary of Charles Francis Adams, volume 3

Saturday 12th.

Monday 14th.

Sunday. 13th. CFA Sunday. 13th. CFA
Sunday. 13th.

Morning quietly at home writing my Journal, a thing I have not had an opportunity of doing before on this day for a long time. I enjoyed it exceedingly for it gave me an idea of home which is in itself exceedingly pleasing. I attended divine service this morning with my wife at Mr. Frothingham’s Meeting House. It was the first time I had ever been to it but as I am not one of those who think that religion is to be found in particular places alone, I am perfectly willing that it 14should always be my place of worship for the future.1 My wife was dressed as a bride and people stared as they usually do.

The remainder of my day was passed at home. I was almost entirely devoted to my Wife who was lonely and a little unwell. Marriage comes to her as a great change and some of it’s features do not please her altogether; to be sure it is a great change for her to go from ease and entire freedom from care to a condition involving them both. But I cannot feel altogether as if she should repine at the change for if she has lost some advantages, she has gained others which should compensate in the end although it is natural enough that at first they should not be sufficiently appreciated. I read aloud during the afternoon and evening a considerable portion of Devereux to her, a new Novel which I do not think much of.

My own situation is somewhat changed. I am called upon for attentions which are altogether new to my system of life and to make sacrifices which in the selfish method of philosophy which I formerly cherished are entirely unknown. It gives me however a pleasure to perform them now which in my old notions I could never have experienced, and which arises entirely from a desire to do what I believe to be my duty.


That the minister of the First Church, Nathaniel Frothingham, was married to Ann Brooks was but one of the ties the Brooks family had to the First Church. Peter C. Brooks noted repeatedly that his mother’s great-great-grandfather was the celebrated John Cotton, the church’s second minister (Waste Book, 4 March 1818; “Book of Possessions, ” Brooks MSS, MHi). Mr. and Mrs. Brooks seem to have attended the First Church from the time of their marriage. Their first child, Edward, and four other children, including ABA, were baptized there. Mr. Brooks served the Church in numerous ways through the years; he held pew No. 77.

The Adams family was not without First Church connections. JQA and his wife had their marriage at Allhallows, Barking, London, 1797, entered in the First Church records; they had CFA. GWA, and JA2 baptized there; and JQA was a pewholder from 1802 when the church was located on Washington Street. CFA’s affiliation, sometimes active, extended to 1868 at least.

See Richard D. Pierce, ed., The Records of the First Church in Boston 1630–1868, Col. Soc. Mass., Pubns. , vols. 39–41 (1961). An engraving of the First Church meetinghouse, 1808–1868, on Chauncy Place just off Summer Street is reproduced in the present volume. See above, p. xi.