Diary of Charles Francis Adams, volume 3

Friday 5th.

Sunday. 7th.

Saturday. 6th. CFA Saturday. 6th. CFA
Saturday. 6th.

Morning cloudy and dark. I went to the Office as usual and was occupied in my usual affairs all the morning. Mr. Jackson the Painter called to tell me that he wanted an order against Dr. Wendell, which I accordingly gave. This man begins to be an annoyance. My feeling about these Houses distresses me. But my only business is firmness, and perseverance. Deacon Spear came to tell me that my father had forgotten to send on his orders about the letting the Farm at Quincy, and requested me to give notice of it to him, which I promised to do.1 Mr. Whitney presented to me a Note giving his final refusal to my proposition. I then sat down, and wrote the whole matter to my Father and requested him to decide how to proceed.2 For my own part I think I should resist, but what he will think proper to do, I am unable to say. The matter is a troublesome one. My time was thus entirely taken up. A tax gatherer from Randolph came to see me and to ask the payment of a large bill of twelve cents, tax upon the Estate of my Grandfather in Randolph. I paid it.3 A gentleman came in to inquire the rent of the two Houses in Tremont Street, and detained me a little while. He did not continue long however the rent being too high. Returned home and after dinner copied my letter and read some of Demosthenes. But my occupations in study are now much interrupted, and I do not so entirely relish him as I did. My own feelings too are not quite so agreeable. I have a head ach much of the time which is very disagreeable, and something new.

After tea, I went to the Meeting of the Debating Society, and heard argued the question of Imprisonment for Debt, taking but little part in it myself. The Meeting was moderately attended, and the subject pretty well debated. Adjourned, and read afterwards at home, The Arabian Nights.4


Spear, who was acting in JQA’s behalf in Quincy, had urged JQA to rent out the Penn’s Hill farm, had had people interested in taking it, but had not received authorization from JQA. Moreover, the most favorable time for leasing was passing rapidly (CFA to JQA, 6 March, LbC, Adams Papers).




Perhaps reflecting a putative interest in the farm in South Braintree, later Randolph, left to JA’s younger brother Elihu by their father and subsequently possessed by Elihu’s oldest son; see JA, Diary and Autobiography , 3:277.


GWA owned an edition published at London in 4 vols., 1819, now in MQA (vols. 1 and 4 only).