Diary of Charles Francis Adams, volume 7

Friday 7th. CFA Friday 7th. CFA
Friday 7th.

Morning a clear, cool air suitable to the season. I remained at home today and occupied myself pretty diligently, first in reading Livy, whose thirtieth book I began, containing the history of Scipio’s masterstroke of policy, and then in writing very industriously and very pertinaciously upon the democratic Address. I found at first it was prodigiously hard to get into the track but once in I went on easily.

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In the afternoon, I walked up the hill where Spear has two men at work digging the cellar. They go on so slowly that I am fearful they will hardly finish the work I have proposed to do this season, before I get away. From thence to Colburn’s Quarry where he is splitting a very fine block of stone, but he had not succeeded in opening it today. Hardwick has resumed work upon his block and the appearances grow more favorable as he goes down. Thus if the quarrying of stone continues an object, the facility of access now made to this common may be likely to make it as frequented as any, particularly if the color prove as favorable as it promises.

Home. An evening party of Quincy people. Millers, Quincys, Greenleafs and Whitneys and Lunts. Cards and a light supper after which they retired.

Saturday 8th. CFA Saturday 8th. CFA
Saturday 8th.

A very pleasant Autumn day. I went to town accompanied by my Wife, whom I left at her friend Miss Carter’s and took up on my return at Mrs. Frothingham’s. My time was taken up between Accounts, a visit to my House to superintend the work doing there and conversation with Mr. A. H. Everett who asked me about my father’s opinion upon the question he proposed to me on Thursday. I gave it to him more decided but substantially like mine. The shortness of the time made me leave many things undone.

Home. Afternoon walk over the commons to Mr. Colburn’s ledge where they had made the first split upon their great rock. The color very perfectly answered their expectation, but owing to not making sufficiently deep leading drills the split was not as square as they had hoped. Thence to Hardwick’s where they had made a very true split and the color decidedly improves. Home over the hill where the men are working on the cellar. They have nearly dug out the borders and expect to be ready to begin the wall on Monday. My well has nine feet of water. Home. Evening, whist with the ladies after which I sat down and drew a revised Address in favour of Mr. Everett.

Sunday. 9th. CFA Sunday. 9th. CFA
Sunday. 9th.

Clear pleasant day. I passed my morning in continuing the revised Address into which I have infused more vehemence, and then attended divine service where I heard Mr. Young of Boston.1 His morning discourse rather an elaborate production of an hour upon the text of Ec-110clesiastes 7. 10. “Say not thou, What is the cause that the former days were better than these? for thou dost not inquire wisely concerning this.” I think I have heard part of this sermon before. It is a good subject but was not handled exactly in the way I should have thought of. Yet the general position that each age and each man influencing it have their peculiar adaptation appears to be a sound one.

Owing to the winter change of hours, the interval of the service was very short this day but Mr. Young dined with us. Afternoon, Matthew 12. 36. “But I say unto you, That every idle word that men shall speak, they shall give account thereof in the day of judgment.” A very general condemnation of the folly and vanity of man who pervert the great gift peculiar to man to very trivial uses. I afterwards read a Sermon of Dr. Barrow upon the truth of the Christian religion. Ephesians 1. 13. “In whom ye also trusted, having heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation.” The main point of the discourse appeared to be to show that a revelation by God to man of his will in such a shape as Christianity is perfectly consistent with reason and our idea of his attributes. Afterwards, finished the Address and then in the evening at home with the ladies.

1.

On Rev. Alexander Young Jr., see vol. 3:49.