Diary of Charles Francis Adams, volume 8

Friday November 1st. CFA Friday November 1st. CFA
Friday November 1st.

Chilly with clouds. At home. Evening at the Mansion.

As it was on the whole more convenient for me to go into town tomorrow, and as my father was in a way to need my vehicle today I thought I would remain at home, and having no temptation to go out, I really did make better progress than usual in my article, but I have wholly remoulded the former draft so that the progress is rather crab-like, and I am not sure that I shall be satisfied with it even in it’s present form. The day was cold and cheerless and gave me many symptoms of inclination for my town house.

Evening at the Mansion where my father was, having returned from the dinner at Dr. Parkman’s. He mentioned to me that he had seen Mr. Brooks at dinner who had expressed to him his regret at the course I had taken about the representative business, that Governor Everett had written to him about it that he might use his influence with me to procure the withdrawal of my letter, and that I. P. Davis had urged him to withdraw it upon his own responsibility, but this he could not undertake.

Of course all this is quite gratifying to my vanity. But my importance in Governor Everett’s eyes springs quite as much from the weakness of the Whig party as from kindness to me. Yet I would not be considered as in so small a matter as this disposed to disregard the wishes or opinion of those who are older and discreet friends too. I hope by this time the matter is settled for me so that there need be 319neither appearance of retreat nor of slight to those whom I feel every disposition to respect.

Saturday 2d. CFA Saturday 2d. CFA
Saturday 2d.

Weather much the same. To town. Afternoon at home. Evening at the Mansion.

I went to town this morning instead of yesterday. Occupied much of the day in the various little duties which must be performed in order to get transferred to town. Just as I was starting my father stepped out and strongly advised me if my place had not been filled up to retrace my steps. I of course felt very willing to defer to such authority although my own judgment did not second it, and agreed to do so if an opening remained. But as nobody came near me about it while in town, I inferred that the matter was settled and in such a way that I escape all disregard of my friends’ wishes. This is as it should be. I believe the matter is settled right. Some talk with Mr. Brooks about it who was brought round to my way of thinking, from his general dislike of political life. I also received from Govr. Everett a kind letter which came too late.1 He urged the probable strength of the vote for me as a test of public opinion. He knows how to flatter.

After working for Mr. Curtis I returned, and spent the afternoon at home in writing. In the evening to the Mansion where Miss Cutts had arrived from Boston. Poor little Fanny continues suffering from her illness to so great a degree as to render it doubtful whether the family will be able to move for some time to the southward.


Edward Everett to CFA, 31 Oct., Adams Papers.

Sunday. 3d. CFA Sunday. 3d. CFA
Sunday. 3d.

Weather much the same. Usual exercises. Evening, visitors and to the Mansion. Ride.

After the hour devoted to Louisa, I attended divine Worship as usual and heard Mr. Lunt preach although without paying him so much attention as I should. His text was from 2 Corinthians 7. 1. “Having therefore these promises, let us cleanse ourselves from all filthiness of the flesh and spirit, perfecting holiness in the fear of God.” Afternoon from Luke 17. 21 “Behold, the kingdom of God is within you.” I recollect hearing this discourse before. But my thoughts were going upon the subject I am writing upon for Mr. Hunt. This is wrong I know but sometimes it is not possible for me to help myself.


Immediately after service was over I went in the Carriage with my Wife to see Mr. and Mrs. S. C. Gray who are still at Dorchester. We were cordially received and made a brief but agreeable visit, returning home to tea.

In the evening we had a visit from Mr. Beale and his son and daughter so long that I could only go a short time to the Mansion. The family are very dull there on account of the long and alarming illness of Fanny, who suffers much.

After returning to my house I read a sermon by the Revd. J. Foster D. D. from Isaiah 40. 6. “All flesh is grass and all the goodliness thereof is as the flower of the field.” A sermon upon death.