Diary of John Quincy Adams, volume 1

Thursday September 1st. 1785. JQA Thursday September 1st. 1785. Adams, John Quincy
Thursday September 1st. 1785.

Went and sat with Mr. de Chaumont a couple of hours, and afterwards accompanied him, and Mr. Toscan &c to Concert hall; to see Mr. Turner's1 scholars dance. Once every fortnight, there is such a forenoon ball, from 1. o'clock to three. There were a number of minuets and country dances performed pretty well: and all the beauties of Boston seem'd to be assembled there in one bright constellation. At about 2 ½, we retired, and waited upon Mr. Cushing the L. Govr. to dinner. There was not a large Company: perhaps a dozen or 14 persons. After dinner we went to pay a visit to Mr. Swan but we met him in the Street going for his Lady. We accompanied him, and sat an hour at Mr. Deneufville's. I do not admire to see this man's wife go into the best Company in this City: I think the people here, should have a Sense of their own Dignity; and not suffer their hospitality to overcome their delicacy.2 In Holland no Gentleman or Lady would have kept Company with this woman: and I think it would be better if it was so here.

318 1.

William Turner, the owner of Boston's Concert Hall, started dancing classes there in 1773 (David McKay, “William Selby, Musical Emigré in Colonial Boston,” The Musical Quarterly, 57:612–613 [Oct. 1971]).


De Neufville's second wife, Anna Margaretha Langmak, was pregnant and gave birth to a daughter on 7 Sept. ( Nieuw Ned. Biog. Woordenboek , 8:1213–1214).

2d. JQA 2d. Adams, John Quincy

Mr. Chaumont intended to set out early in the morning for Philadelphia (or rather Albany,) but it rain'd so hard that he was obliged to postpone it till the afternoon. I went to his lodgings at about 9 o'clock, and stay'd till about noon. We then went to a billiard table, and play'd a game. I dined at Mr. Smith's. After dinner I return'd to Mr. de Chaumont's lodgings, and found him, making preparations for his departure. At about 4 o'clock he set out in his Chaise with the Consul: Mr. Issotier Mr. Serane, and myself accompanied him on horseback. Mr. Toscan, went only to the neck, and then left us. The rest of us, went about 4 miles further and at 5 o'clock or thereabouts we took our leave of Mr. Chaumont who proposes going as far as Waltham to night. I spent the evening at Mr. Foster's1 house, with my uncle Cranch, and Dr. Tufts.2


Probably William Foster, a Boston merchant, brother and business partner of Joseph Foster, whom AA and AA2 had met on board the Active on their way to Europe in 1784. Soon after JQA's arrival in Boston, Mary Smith Cranch arranged to board the Adams boys at Mr. Foster's, “whenever they are not invited else Where” (Frederick Clifton Pierce, Foster Genealogy; Being The Record of the Posterity of Reginald Foster . . ., 2 vols., Chicago, 1899, 2:940–941; JA, Diary and Autobiography , 3:156, 164; Thwing Catalogue, MHi; Mary Smith Cranch to AA, 14 Aug.–15 Sept., Adams Papers).


Dr. Cotton Tufts Sr. (1732–1815) was AA's uncle by marriage. While JA and AA were in Europe, Tufts had a power of attorney to handle JA's business affairs, including those related to the education of his sons (JA to Cotton Tufts, 6 Sept. 1784, Adams Papers, Fourth Generation).

3d. JQA 3d. Adams, John Quincy

Visited the Consul in the morning, and spent an hour with him. At about noon I left Boston, and went before dinner as far as Milton. When I got there, I found Mrs. Warren had just left it with her son Charles for Boston where he is now gone to embark; the vessel is to sail on monday or Tuesday. I dined with the genl., and his three remaining sons, James, Harry, and George. The genl. bought this seat at Milton about 4 years ago; it formerly belonged to Governor Hutchinson, and is a very beautiful 319situation.1 Yet the genl. talks of selling it again, and going back to live on his farm at Plimouth: At about 4 o'clock I set out again, for Braintree; stopp'd at My uncle Adams's and drank tea; and got to Mr. Cranch's, at about 7 o'clock.


The Hutchinson-Warren House on Milton Hill is illustrated in Adams Family Correspondence , 4:facing 189, and described in same, p. ix–x.