Diary of Charles Francis Adams, volume 3

Friday. 22d. CFA Friday. 22d. CFA
Friday. 22d.

Morning mild and pleasant. Went to the Office as usual—My time as much occupied in affairs of business. My tenant called upon me to talk over the matter and from what he said I feel disposed to close the 140agreement with him. It is not worthwhile to listen to the conversation of such a man as Hollis whom I do not entirely think well of, when after inquiring of the Officers in town who would be very likely to know, I find they have no acquaintance whatever with the man. This would prevent the supposition that he is notorious which was Hollis’ assertion. On the whole I begin to think Hollis is a poor fellow—This being the second time he has put me in fear of Tenants without good apparent reason. I had an applicant also for the House in Tremont Street, and took it upon me to offer the House upon my own responsibility for three hundred and seventy five dollars. This is a great diminution but it cannot be helped. I lose more by letting the House stay empty. Mr. Leighton called and paid me the rent for the room opposite which winds up that business. I now think of fitting up and advertising them both and moving myself upstairs—Which would put the Building again upon its proper footing. But all these things involve expense which ought to be considered. But if the benefits anticipated were sure they would overbalance them in a very few months. If I get my Houses off, perhaps I may try it. Thus went the morning. I passed the afternoon reading Mitchell’s Aristophanes, The Comedy of the Knights, after which I tried to think over something to say upon the Militia Question tomorrow night, but could hit upon nothing.

Mr. Brooks intimated to me that his Wife was very ill today. I am very fearful her disorder is rapidly approaching to it’s termination, and poor Abby is in tears about it. But I apprehend she has much more to suffer yet. We went out this evening to a little party at Mrs. Dehon’s which was pleasanter than usual and I thought it was ten when the hour of eleven frightened us home.

Saturday 23rd. CFA Saturday 23rd. CFA
Saturday 23rd.

Morning cold but pleasant. I went to the Office as usual. Found myself occupied without knowing how, first in the receipt of a Letter from my Father which I read with pleasure, as it had nothing in it of a disagreeable or depressing nature.1 This and the writing my Journal took up an hour. I then went to ask after Mrs. Brooks, and was told that she was much the same, though it was hoped that the applications made would relieve her. My proposed Tenant, Mr. Gilbert then called upon me, who had been to see Mrs. Lewis, and had been much shaken in his inclinations for the House by the series of representations, or rather misrepresentations she had made. This was not a little provoking and I felt out of temper, it being enough that I should reduce the rent. He left me promising an answer on Monday. I then went to Mr. 141Edward Blake’s Office to meet with the Committee on the Militia for the Debating Society.2 We sat nearly two hours and talked of every thing without coming to any conclusion. I was obliged to leave off because I was fearful that I had lost my Tenants at the Office. I shall not feel easy until the Houses are let. On returning to it, I found Mr. Degrand had called to let me know that he had transferred the shares of the State Bank which had been purchased for my Father, so that I went down and concluded the business by adding these with the remainder of George’s making eleven to the sixty already owned by my Father. This took the rest of the morning.

The Afternoon was spent in reading Mitchell’s Translation of the Knights of Aristophanes, and comparing the Letters copied by the copyist of Mr. Sparks with the originals in the Letter books. They are very interesting and it will be a good way for me to read them. But in objecting to any for publication I feel a little doubtful of my Judgment and dislike the responsibility. After tea, I went down leaving my Wife at Mrs. Frothingham’s to the Meeting of the Debating Society. It was respectable and the discussion upon the subject of Dissection was continued with great interest. I felt much more engaged in it than I had expected, but the cold was so great that we adjourned early without coming to any decision or without hearing all the information upon the subject. The evening was severe. I returned home with my Wife at nine.


JQA to CFA, 17 Jan. (Adams Papers).


Blake’s office was at 5 Court Street ( Boston Directory, 1830–1831).