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Browsing: Diary of Charles Francis Adams, Volume 2


Docno: ADMS-13-02-02-0004-0011-0013

Author: CFA
Date: 1828-11-13

Thursday 13th.

I walked down this morning to obtain some wood for my office as tomorrow I propose to put it in operation. I am not yet admitted to the Bar but shall be at the opening of the next Term so as to be able to transact any business given to me which I do not expect however to be much. I walked to Mrs. Frothingham’s to pay her a visit and met Abby on the road. I went with her to see Miss Anne Carter who though an Invalid is not in a consumption as I had supposed a year since.
Thus the morning passed and the time came for me to go out to Medford with Mr. Brooks. He took the opportunity of answering my application some time since.1 He was short, merely saying that he wished it deferred for a year until he might build another House for his daughter, that I was young and next Autumn would be time { 308 } enough. This was an unexpected blow, and prostrated my spirits at once. To have this thing delayed for a year longer after my patience and hope seems like removing all prospect of happiness beyond the limits of human sight. I submitted on two grounds. One including my peculiar subject of trouble which forbids my insisting upon what I cannot foretel certainly the result of, the other, that I may relieve my father just now. But the disappointment is still severe, and my feelings will be long sore upon the subject. My own feelings are strong. They will probably lead me to despise the miserably timid policy which hedges me in; they will certainly create regret in after times if I should find a year of happiness lost. But as it is, I submit and commit my soul to God. I had some conversation with Abby in which I explained to her the course I should think it necessary to take in consequence.2 This brought tears and bitterness. But conscious of being actuated by the most excellent motives, I was obliged to bear all in sorrow and in hope. How different from the feelings of Saturday! These are the constant vicissitudes of life, sunshine and clouds.
1. See entry for 26 Oct., and note, above.
2. The details of CFA’s proposed new course are unclear. Apparently he planned to spend much more of his time in his office and to see Abigail only infrequently. See undated, incomplete letter of CFA to Abigail B. Brooks [22 Nov. 1828], Adams Papers.