Diary of Charles Francis Adams, volume 2

30th. CFA 30th. CFA

Conversation with Satterlee Clark who is attacking Mr. Pleasonton 70in the papers.1 A very singular man, he professes to be very friendly to me and certainly he has very quickly taken up the cudgels for me in answer to a scurrilous piece which appeared in a scurrilous paper just established in this city called Coram’s Champion referring to my last visit to New York.2 Paine Todd, a nephew of Madison’s was here too. I don’t know where I first knew him but I recollect his face of old. Morning passed in a course of lounging. Todd asked me to go over and dine with Col. Smith of the Marine Corps3 which I accepted but owing to a misunderstanding respecting the hour, I thought he had left me and so dined at home. Weed came in and James Baker who is staying upon Long Island with his wife and child for the benefit of the latter. Having nothing else to do Weed and I rode over to see her and spent the afternoon at the place, called the Bath house on the sea shore.


Stephen Pleasanton, the Fifth Auditor of the Treasury Department (Lanman, Biographical Annals , p. 509).


Few issues of the semi-weekly paper, Coram’s Champion, are extant. CFA was disturbed enough by the story to defend himself in a letter to his father. Only JQA’s reply has survived: “I well knew that the foolish and malicious newspaper paragraph concerning you was without foundation. Our Grub Street is wider than that of London. Coram and Noah, may look for a purchaser and the Messiah, in company. They will find both at the same time” (JQA to CFA, 13 Aug. 1826, Adams Papers).


Captain Richard Smith of the Marine Corps, a lieutenant colonel by brevet since 1825 (Force, National Calendar, 1828, p. 229).

31st. Monday. CFA 31st. Monday. CFA
31st. Monday.

My spirits which had been dreadfully depressed during my journey with my Mother grew lighter as I felt myself independent. I met John Welsh1 this morning and played billiards with him all the morning. The tables at the Café François very fine. After dinner went to the Castle Garden to wait for Madame, found her and conveyed her safely to the City Hotel, after which I went to the Opera and heard the first performance of Romeo and Juliet.2 Parts of it pleased me very much particularly Garcia in the close of the Second Act. But I did not think it a very remarkable piece. The commencement of the overture is pretty, but there seems to be more noise than harmony in the generality of the music. Watkins was with me who knew nothing whatever about music and merely went for fashion’s sake. He troubled me considerably at first, but as this sort of performance is not one which is often presented to us Americans, I could not afford to lose it.


John Welsh, the son of Dr. Thomas Welsh of Boston, a relative and old friend of the Adamses. See Adams Genealogy.


Niccolo A. Zingarelli’s Giulietta e Romeo.