Diary of Charles Francis Adams, volume 7

163 Monday. 9th. CFA Monday. 9th. CFA
Monday. 9th.

Morning milder. I went to the Office. My time passed there hardly needs a record inasmuch as one day will answer for a hundred. I get there late and after looking over the morning papers at the National Insurance Office, then part of my time is taken up in casual interruptions from visitors of business or pleasure, part in Accounts and part in keeping along this Diary, thus the time arrives for walking and then home to Livy. Nothing further. Afternoon, I devote part of my time to Plutarch and part to Burnet with occasionally German and a half hour to the instruction of my little girl Louisa. Evening with my Wife to whom I generally read, and after it, continue Goguet. This evening however I wrote a letter to my Mother,1 and was thus kept up late.


In Adams Papers.

Tuesday 10th. CFA Tuesday 10th. CFA
Tuesday 10th.

Mild and cloudy. Office. Time much taken up with persons calling to see me. Mr. Walsh who generally drops in for half an hour. Mr. A. H. Everett and Russel Freeman who came in to see not me but him.1 I left them in my room and had a conference with my carpenter Mr. Ayer who came to consult me. I was obliged to dispatch him quickly in order to get an opportunity to make a call or two for Rents. This I was enabled to do without much success. Thus passed the morning and I had not much time for Livy. Afternoon, Plutarch, Burnet, and Forster. Variety enough. Mr. Brooks took tea here. Evening conversation with my Wife instead of reading, after which Goguet.


In his letter to his mother a day earlier, CFA characterized (in inverse order) the three visitors of the present morning: “Here is one poor fellow who has lived for seven years and three quarters upon the hope of reinstatement to a place of which he was deprived by General Jackson, and tells me he can go on a year longer and then he will be a candidate for the poor house. Here is another who has with all the advantages nature and education gave him yet got to the lowest round of the ladder and is the sport of creatures far his inferiors in almost every attribute. And here is a third, modest, capable and well educated wearing out his years in seeking a bare livelihood which he does not find. Here are three cases, (the last the hardest of the three) directly within my observation, in which there is trial and cause for low spirits, and I hope they have for the present put out of my head all foolish nonsense.”

Wednesday 11th. CFA Wednesday 11th. CFA
Wednesday 11th.

Mild and clear. Our weather is charming. I went to the Office. Mr. Walsh made a long visit. He now has two objects in view, and he 164seems to stand irresolute between them. I shall try my best to aid him whichever way he inclines.

After him came John Kirk who amused me by his Account of his adventures since leaving Quincy. He has as might be expected been stripped of all the money he raised to go and has lost his time besides. He told me a long story about the failure of one of the Carrs, which has been the talk of the town since.1 I could give him no consolation, excepting insofar as he might rejoice that he had not been able to lose two hundred dollars instead of one which he would have done if I had not refused him.

Home. Livy. Afternoon, Burnet. Mr. Ayer came in and consumed an hour or more in consulting about the details of the building. I believe he finally understood me respecting them all. My child Louisa is ailing as she so frequently does in the winter and gives us great uneasiness. Evening went to Mr. Frothingham’s. Family as usual. Nothing particularly interesting. Home early.


Abraham Carr, a brother of JQA’s tenant John G. Carr, had gone bankrupt (CFA to LCA, 16 Jan., Adams Papers).