Diary of Charles Francis Adams, volume 7

Wednesday. 25th. CFA Wednesday. 25th. CFA
Wednesday. 25th.

A very beautiful day. I went to Market and from thence to the Office. My first number upon the currency appeared today1 I attended a Meeting of the Directors of the Middlesex Canal and heard the annual report of the Agent. It is on the whole flattering as the result of the first years competition with the Railroad, and I think promises well. The reduction of tolls is about five thousand dollars from the Lowell 172trade diverted.2 Hereafter it may be more but I should incline to doubt. The usual Dividend was recommended and declared, although a part of it is made up of the receipts of last year which were reserved. No heavy repairs are however contemplated for next year and the Agent for the first time since I have been at the board makes no recommendations.3

I returned to the Office and was busy in usual way. To the Athenaeum to gather facts for writing. Home. Livy. Miss Anne Beale dined and spent the day with us. Afternoon, read Buffon’s description of Man, until I was interrupted by Mr. Ayer who came to ask some questions about the house. He says all his hewing is done and he hopes to finish sawing shortly. I enjoined it upon him not to lose the present snow in the process of carrying the timber up. Afterwards, Forster, a political discussion. I am wasting my time with this author. Evening Mr. Beale came in and we talked upon Quincy matters. There was a very magnificent Aurora Borealis this evening which I went out to see. Afterwards, writing.

1.

CFA’s articles entitled “Mr. Webster and the Currency,” signed “A.,” appeared in six installments in the Advocate, the first on 25 Jan., the last on 8 February. Manuscript versions in CFA’s hand, together with newspaper clippings, are in the Adams Papers (M/CFA/24.14, Microfilms, Reel No. 320).

2.

That is, the reduction in revenue from tolls ... on freight formerly carried between Boston and Lowell but lost to the new reilroad.

3.

On the Adams family interest in the Middlesex Canal and on its history and prospects, see vols. 3:150–154; 5:18–19.

Thursday. 26th. CFA Thursday. 26th. CFA
Thursday. 26th.

A fine day. I went to the Office and was occupied as usual in Accounts and Diary. The usual routine with the usual number and description of visitors. Mr. Walsh and A. H. Everett. Talked with the latter upon the subject of my papers. He is one of a few familiar with the subject, who seems to understand it as I do, but even he appears to have been puzzled by the co-existence of specie and paper in this Country.

Home a little late. Dutton of the Quincy Stone Cutters. T. Adams Jr. and J. H. Adams all came on dunning expeditions. I paid them all and spoke to the second about procuring me a horse in the spring. Livy. Afternoon Buffon and Burnet with a very languid portion of Plutarch.

Evening, reading to my Wife a part of a new book of Captain Basil Hall’s called Schloss Hainfeld1—amusing enough in his John Bull way. Afterwards, continued writing upon Currency but this was one of 173my bad nights when things do not run well and I only spoil sheets of paper.

1.

Basil Hall, Schloss Hainfeld; or a Winter in Lower Styria, Edinburgh, 1836.