Passed the morning at the Office. Mr. Webster invited me to dine with him. Company. Captain Basil Hall of the Royal Navy, and his Lady,1
Mr. Geo. Ticknor, and his lady, Mr. and Mrs. Hale,2
Mr. Bancroft, Geo. Blake, Mr. F. C. Gray and myself. The first named gentleman, to whom this dinner was given, is a man who has distinguished himself by publishing some travels, and has been so much praised in consequence that he comes here now to try his hand upon this Country. His manners are not first-rate although he seems an intelligent man. I was much pleased with Mrs. Hale. Ticknor was always my aversion. Evening at home.
1. Basil Hall (1788–1844), the British naval officer who had already published accounts of his travels in Asia and South America, made no mention of Daniel Webster’s dinner, or of CFA, in his Travels in North America, 1829, but Mrs. Hall, in a letter of 9 October 1827, refers to “Mr. Charles Adams (a son of the President)” and describes Webster’s dinner arrangements as “much better, according to our notions, than what we have before seen in this country” (The Aristocratic Journey: Being the Outspoken Letters of Mrs. Basil Hall, ed. Una Pope-Hennessy, N.Y., 1931, p. 87).
2. Presumably Nathan Hale (1784–1863), the editor of the Boston Daily Advertiser,
and his wife, Sarah Preston (Everett) Hale, the sister of Edward Everett (