Adams Family Correspondence, volume 1

Abigail Adams to John Adams, 12 November 1775 AA JA Abigail Adams to John Adams, 12 November 1775 Adams, Abigail Adams, John
Abigail Adams to John Adams
Braintree Novbr. 12 1775

I received yours of October 23. I want to hear from you every day, and I always feel sorrow when I come to the close of a Letter. Your Time must be greatly engrosed, but little of it to spaire to the calls of Friendship, and I have reason to think I have the largest share of it.

Winter makes its approaches fast. I hope I shall not be obliged to spend it without my dearest Friend, I know not how to think of it.

The intelegance you will receive before this reaches you, will I should think make a plain path, tho a dangerous one for you. I could not join to day in the petitions of our worthy parson, for a reconciliation betwen our, no longer parent State, but tyrant State, and these Colonies.—Let us seperate, they are unworthy to be our Breathren. Let us renounce them and instead of suplications as formorly for their prosperity and happiness, Let us beseach the almighty to blast their counsels and bring to Nought all their devices.

I have nothing remarkable to write you. A little Skirmish hapned last week. The perticuliars I have endeavourd to collect, but whether I have the facts right I am not certain. A Number of Cattle were kept 325at Leachmores point where two Centinals were placed, in a high tide tis an Island. The Regulars had observed this and a Scheme was laid to send a Number of them over and take of the Stock. Accordingly a number of Boats and about 400 men were sent; they landed it seems, unperceived by the Centinals who were a sleep; one of whom they killed the other took prisoner. As soon as they were perceived, they pourd the cannon from Prospect Hill upon them which sunk one of their Boats, but as the tide was very high, it was difficult getting over, and some time before any alarm was given. A Coll. Tomson of the Riffel Men, Marchd instantly with his Men, and tho a very stormy day, regarded not the tide, nor wated for Boats, but Marchd over, neck high in water, and dischargd their peices, when the Regulars ran without waiting for to get of their Stock, and made the best of their way to the opposite Shore. The General sent his thanks in a public manner to the brave officer and his Men.1 Major Mifflin I hear was there, and flew about as tho he would have raisd the whole Army.

May they never find us deficient in courage and Spirit.

Our Army is exceedingly well supplied with every article but wood and provinder which is very scarce. As to provisions we should find no difficulty to vitual an other Army full as large. Tis now very Healthy both in the Army, and country, we have had very long teadious rains for six weeks past; sometimes not more than one fair day in a week.

All our Friends are well. My Father seems to be much broke by his great affliction, seems to have his care and anxiety doubled. I can perceive it in numberless instances.—I hope you will be able to get his Sulky repaird, as he wants it now it comes cold Weather very much.

Dr. Frankling invited me to spend the winter in Philidelphia. I shall wish to be there, unless you return. I have been like a nun in a cloister ever since you went away, have not been into any other house than my Fathers and Sisters, except once to Coll. Quincys. Indeed I have had no inclination for Company. My Evenings are lonesome and Melancholy. In the day time family affairs take of my attention but my Evenings are spent with my departed parent. I then ruminate upon all her care and tenderness, and I am sometimes lost, and absorb'd in a flood of tenderness e'er I am aware of it, or can call to my aid, my only props and support.

I must bid you adieu tis late at Night. Most affectionately Yours.

RC (Adams Papers); addressed in John Thaxter's hand: “To The Honble: John Adams Esq at Philadelphia To the Care of Coll: Warren”; endorsed: “Novr. 12. Portia.”


For the affair at Lechmere Point (now East Cambridge) on 9 Nov., see Wash-326ington's thanks to Col. William Thompson in his general orders of the 10th, and Washington's report to the President of Congress, 11 Nov. (Washington, Writings, ed. Fitzpatrick, 4:79, 84).

John Adams to Abigail Adams, 12 November 1775 JA AA John Adams to Abigail Adams, 12 November 1775 Adams, John Adams, Abigail
John Adams to Abigail Adams
My dear Novr. 12. 1775

I am often afraid you will think it hard that I dont write oftener to you. But it is really impossible. Could I follow the Inclinations of my Heart I should spend half my Time, in this most agreable and pleasing Employment: But Business presses me so close that I am necessitated to mortify my self. From 7 to ten in the Committees and from six to ten in the Evening in the same, and from 10 to four in Congress. Many Letters to write too upon Business.

As to News, you have every Thing in the public Papers, which I am not now under the strongest Ties of Honour, Virtue and Love of my Country to keep secret, and not to divulge directly or indirectly.

I am most earnestly desirous to come home, but when I shall get Leave I know not.

I long to write to your Excellent Father and sisters, but cannot get Time. You must have observed, and so must all my Friends that every Letter I write is scratched off in the utmost Haste.

How do you like Dr. Franklyn? He tells me he called at the House and saw you, and that he had the Pleasure of dining with you at his Friend Coll. Quincys. This gave me great Pleasure because I concluded from it that my dear and most worthy sisters Cranch and Betcy were better.

RC (Adams Papers); addressed: “Mrs. Adams Braintree To the Care of Coll Warren.”

John Adams to Abigail Adams, 15 November 1775 JA AA John Adams to Abigail Adams, 15 November 1775 Adams, John Adams, Abigail
John Adams to Abigail Adams
Novr. 15th. 1775

This I suppose will go by Mr. James Bowdoin who has just arrived here from London.1 He has been very obliging in communicating to me Pamphlets and News Papers in which last I find that some Parts of Novanglus have been retailed out there and have brought on a Battle in the public Papers between Hutchinson and Pounal.2 Mr. Bowdoin has been to Italy, Holland, France and England and is returned an honest and warm American. He says to his Astonishment, he found 327the great American Controversy better understood, and the Consequences of it more clearly foreseen in France than in England.

RC (Adams Papers); addressed: “To Mrs. Adams Braintree.”


James Bowdoin Jr. (1752–1811), Harvard 1771, who had been studying in England and traveling on the Continent; he became a merchant, state representative and senator, and, by appointment of Pres. Jefferson, U.S. minister to Spain ( DAB ).


The parts of JA's “Novanglus” papers (published earlier this year in the Boston Gazette) that had been “retailed” in England consisted of extracts that appeared in the first volume of John Almon's Remembrancer, or Impartial Repository of Public Events, London, 1775, p. 24–32, 45–54, under the title “History of the Dispute with America; from its Origin in 1754, to the Present Time.” The allusion to “a Battle in the public Papers” between former Governors Thomas Hutchinson and Thomas Pownall remains obscure and may be groundless gossip.