Diary of Charles Francis Adams, volume 5

Tuesday. 21st. CFA Tuesday. 21st. CFA
Tuesday. 21st.

A beautiful morning with a fine North west breeze. I think my father must have had a favorable passage. I went to town. My Mother was quiet although she did not pass a very quiet night. Her head is now running upon ever so many things and she worries herself out of 407trifles. We had no letters by the Mail of this morning, nor by yesterday’s, which I consider in my brother’s case as a favorable omen.

At the Office engaged in writing. Called at Mr. Frothingham’s to see my Wife and occupied in a variety of Commissions for my Mother. Returned to Quincy to dinner. Afternoon passed with my Mother and in planting some of the seeds left by my father. Evening I managed to make use of some hours to read some pages of Ovid and my German.

My occupations grow less and less and my anxiety greater and greater. When I reflect upon the future I think I perceive much to be gone through before we reach again a clear sky. My brother may if he has energy enough left and survives this attack, yet recover. But the probabilities must be admitted to be against the first even more than the second condition. My father is daily becoming more helpless in his private concerns and there is nobody but me who takes interest enough in them to attend to them properly. I foresee much sacrifice and after all, but it is useless. My ideas are perhaps those of a croaker. And it is better for me to trust implicitly to a superior being who guides us all, only keeping myself properly prepared to execute whatever it may fall to my lot to do.

Wednesday. 22d. CFA Wednesday. 22d. CFA
Wednesday. 22d.

A southerly wind blew up a great quantity of clouds but it did not rain. I went to the Office and was engaged there in overlooking my papers and making some disposition of them. They seem to overflow me every little while and yet I appear to be among the most quiet and retired beings in the Community. Perhaps one reason of my difficulty is that I keep almost every piece of paper.

At noon I received a letter directed to my father and dated Sunday Evening, from Mr. Frye,1 repeating almost literally the preceding letters. The delirium is in addition only. That it should continue without abatement is an unfavourable sign. Indeed at first I felt almost without hope, but afterwards (such is man’s nature) I thought it presented nothing new. The word is still critical which is ambiguous. We shall now soon know from my father who will, in hope, be on the spot this evening.

I retained the letter and went with it to Medford where we enjoyed a pleasant and quiet afternoon and evening. I was rejoiced to see my children well and my Wife. How much I have to be grateful for.


Letter missing. On Nathaniel Frye Jr., brother-in-law of LCA, see vol. 1:4 and Adams Genealogy.