Diary of Charles Francis Adams, volume 2

Sunday 28th. CFA Sunday 28th. CFA
Sunday 28th.

Awoke this morning feeling quite well, but the idea of sickness has so pervaded me that I cannot get rid of the impression that I am sick. Morning with my Mother. My father came in and entered into conversation respecting houses in Boston which seemed to imply some overture to me. But I did not take it as such for it seemed to me indirect and his plan which related to Quincy’s house very absurd, if he applied it to me. This house rents for eight hundred and fifty dollars, altogether larger than I desire one.1 My Mother did not ride today. Wrote a letter to Abby.2 I feel a little put out at her writing as she does. It makes correspondence tame not to answer letters im-288mediately. Evening with my Mother. Johnson Hellen dined here and we talked politics as usual with him.


JQA contemplated buying a house owned by Mayor Quincy in the Colonnade, one of a series of nineteen houses extending along Tremont Street, from West Street to Mason Street. CFA misunderstood his purposes, however, for the President intended it for his own use after retirement (JQA to GWA, 28 Sept. 1828; LCA to GWA, 30 i.e. 29 Sept. 1828, Adams Papers; Whitehill, Boston: A Topographical History , p. 66).


CFA’s letter in the Adams Papers is erroneously dated 29 Sept.

Monday. 29th. CFA Monday. 29th. CFA
Monday. 29th.

Morning passed at home. Tolerably well, but so completely convinced that I am sick that I determined to take some more medicine. Read aloud to my Mother a portion of Irving’s Life of Columbus.1 Received two letters, one from George2 and one from Abby. The former on business, informing me that one hundred dollars more had been invested in one share of the American Bank at 3 per cent advance, for which I am to have a dividend tomorrow. Also that I might have an Office in Court Street and that he was taking measures to have me admitted. All this is good news and after my return from my ride with my Mother I answered him in full upon all these points.3 The other letter from Abby, was not less pleasant although it complained of the coldness of my first letter which very much astonished me. It put me in tolerable spirits notwithstanding. For the first time since my arrival we had company to dinner.

Mr. Duponceau and his grand-daughter from Philadelphia,4 Genl. Harrison who starts for Colombia,5 and a certain Col. Thomas,6 with Johnson Hellen formed the Company. Bernay the Cook gave us a chef d’oeuvre of science and skill in the culinary art and for my life I could not avoid indulging though I knew I should be obliged to pay for it. The evening passed as usual. I had some conversation with Johnson afterwards.


CFA’s copy of Washington Irving’s A History of the Life and Voyages of Christopher Columbus, 3 vols., N.Y., 1828, is in the Stone Library.




Letter missing.


Pierre Etienne Du Ponceau (1760–1844), who had served as a French volunteer in the American Revolution, was now a leading Philadelphia lawyer ( DAB ).


William Henry Harrison (1773–1841), the future President, had been appointed minister to Colombia on 24 May 1828 ( Biog. Dir. Cong. ).


Possibly James Thomas, of Massachusetts, formerly a colonel in the quartermaster general’s office (Heitman, Register U.S. Army ).

Tuesday. 30th. CFA Tuesday. 30th. CFA
Tuesday. 30th.

Took some medicine today again in order to prevent any recurrence 289of these bilious symptoms during my stay here. The operation of it was not severe which convinces me that there was less occasion for it than I imagined. Morning passed with my Mother who seemed much better. Nothing occurred worthy of notice. My father seems at last to be making some arrangements for removal. But as yet I find nothing definite. I feel tempted to leave this place very much were it not that my Mother would suffer so much from it. Wrote a letter to Abby which took the afternoon,1 and passed the evening quietly with my Mother.


CFA’s letter in the Adams Papers is erroneously dated 1 October.