Diary of Charles Francis Adams, volume 2

Saturday. 16th. CFA Saturday. 16th. CFA
Saturday. 16th.

Morning at the Office, weather cloudy and chilly. No letters from home. I wrote a short one to my Father strongly urging him to come on.1 I think it is very necessary and essential. Read a little of the Jurist, a law publication which has lately come out and which I mentioned some days ago. Went to Medford with Mr. Brooks. It rained heavily all afternoon. I unwarily became engaged in a conversation with Abby and suffered my temper to go farther than usual which pained me exceedingly. But repentance is a very poor business unless it lead to amendment. Evening passed very pleasantly.


Since GWA, who had acted as JQA’s agent in Boston, had left his papers and financial affairs in great disorder, CFA wrote his father: “I would submit the 378expediency of your coming as soon as you feel able so to do, in order to take into your own hands again the direction of your affairs” (CFA to JQA, 16 May 1829, Adams Papers).

Sunday 17th. CFA Sunday 17th. CFA
Sunday 17th.

Beautiful spring Morning. I went to Meeting this morning and heard Mr. Stetson preach a long and rather a dull Sermon. On the whole it did me no good and in the Afternoon I felt oppressed with head ache and staid at home. Mrs. Everett and Miss Phillips dined here, and P. Chardon Brooks came out with a certain Col. De Kay formerly of New York now in the service of Buenos Ayres. He seemed to me to be a foolish, conceited puppy of the Porter1 kind, full of bravado and vulgarity. Evening with Abby. I had a terrible nervous head ach which made me a very unpleasant companion.


A watchdog ( OED ).

Monday. 18th. CFA Monday. 18th. CFA
Monday. 18th.

Another beautiful morning. Returned to town with Mr. Brooks. I felt exceedingly depressed. Sometimes, this sensation comes over me and I can scarcely feel equal to any exertion whatever. The sense of the responsibility of my present situation comes heavily over me, and the idea of the condition of the family, should any thing happen to me, is too distressing. Formerly I had only the apprehension on my own account, now how much it is increased. I derive consolation and support only from my religious feelings, and the sense of performing my duty so far as in me lies. Read Law this morning and transacted a little business. My father’s Affairs need attention. In the afternoon, read Clarendon and much interested in his Account of the Civil War, and the character of Falkland. It is beautifully drawn. Took a walk and felt soothed by the softness of the air and the beauty of the verdure with which the Common is covered. This is a sweet spot. In the evening, a few numbers of the Spectator. One on Prayer.

Tuesday. 19th. CFA Tuesday. 19th. CFA
Tuesday. 19th.

Morning at the Office. Still no letters which keeps down my spirits exceedingly. Occupied myself in writing and reading Law. The weather was fine but exceedingly warm.

I thought I would go up and see the House which is destined for me.1 I examined it all over and was on the whole very much pleased with it. But I cannot realize the belief that I am really to live there. My feelings have always been that I should never marry and even now 379when I see the preparations most actively going on I cannot overcome my presentiment. This might have been avoided, had I been married at once last Autumn, but now circumstances contribute to increase this old feeling powerfully. I do trust in Heaven.

I was so dull to day that I was glad to see Richardson who called to pay me a visit, and we decided upon dining together at the Exchange Coffee House which is open again. Our dinner was good and time agreeable, after which we decided upon riding to the Railway House. The weather was pleasant, but I got home on the whole, fatigued and disgusted even with pleasure.


P. C. Brooks purchased for his daughter the house at 3 Hancock Avenue, where the Adamses lived during the early years of their married life ( Boston Directory, 1830–1831).