Diary of Charles Francis Adams, volume 8

Thursday 5th. CFA Thursday 5th. CFA
Thursday 5th.

Very warm indeed, perhaps the hottest day yet of this hot season. I rode to Boston however taking Kirk in with me for the sake of riding the horse back and allowing me to drive a new one for trial. My time much taken up in Accounts and with interruptions. Saw Mr. Angier, Mr. A. H. Everett and Mr. Brooks, and two or three others. Nothing very new.

At one I started to return with the new horse, but owing to a misunderstanding I was allowed to take him without a pulley bridle to which he had been used. The consequence came near being fatal to me, for my hold was entirely unequal to restraining him for any length of time, so after two effectual attempts, I gave way on the third and he ran away with me. Luckily his former master had been in the habit of stopping to water him at a pump by Glover’s store, and to this he directed his course so I by a last effort brought him up there. But my strength was so entirely gone that I had to hire a young man to accompany me the rest of the way and by doubling the reins back, he obtained the necessary control of the horse to make him go gently. Thus was I saved from an imminent peril, for which I felt duly grateful to that being who in all cases tries us for our good. The horse was also saved from injury as a further run on this hot day would have ruined him.

I was so fatigued as not much to enjoy my Afternoon. But I read Pliny, and Grahame. E. C. Adams spent the day here and Mrs. Stebbins took tea in the evening. We had a thunder shower but not a se-74vere one. I retired to bed in a tone of mind which I hope may benefit me.

Friday 6th. CFA Friday 6th. CFA
Friday 6th.

The air was perfectly clear this morning and cool enough to be very agreeable. I went to town accompanied by my man John, and drove in the horse I brought yesterday. He was by the aid of the contrivance of yesterday entirely under control and seemed to be docile and tractable, without tricks.

I was much occupied at the house and in various ways today. Accounts more especially. A call from Dr. King the electrician who had much to say of his experiments, and of my house.1 Home by half after twelve taking with me another horse for trial. And if I had so much work yesterday to stop the one, I had nearly as much to get the other on. He was slow and awkward.

Afternoon reading Pliny and feeling somewhat stiff from my yesterday effort, to remove which I resorted to the spade and rake. Short evening and retire early.


The Boston Directory, 1838, lists a “William King, electrician,” whose place of business was at 54 Cornhill and home at 1 Lyman Place. The likelihood is that the conference related to the installation of lightning rods on the new residence.

Saturday 7th. CFA Saturday 7th. CFA
Saturday 7th.

Morning clear and cool, growing warmer however as the day advanced. My Wife wished to go to Boston, so I accompanied her with the Nurse and baby. At the Office where I finished the very profitless inquisition in rectifying my Account and without success which is worse.

A short call from Alex. H. Everett, who does not appear to me to be in very good spirits. The news from Washington is not at all of a character to favour the continued domination of the Administration party, but it seems willing to set it’s all upon the cast and the Autumn elections will probably decide the hazard of the die. I wish the Government had made for itself a better cause.

Dined with Mr. Frothingham and had a pleasant talk about the University and the modes of study best adapted to the forms of our country. Afterwards, returned to Quincy. Glad to get there and wish during the hot weather that I was not so often called to leave it. Drive to Braintree with Miss Sampson after my return and sat an hour on the porch. Quite a luxury.