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Browsing: Adams Family Correspondence, Volume 2


Search for a response to this letter.

Docno: ADMS-04-02-02-0313

Author: Lowell, John
Recipient: Adams, Abigail
Date: 1778-02-22

John Lowell to Abigail Adams

[salute] Dear Madam

I am not displeased that the Call of Business obliges me to address you at this Time, and gives me an Opportunity of expressing my sincere good Wishes, that Mr. Adams's Voyage may be agreable, and happy; I am sensible that the Prospect of so long a Seperation must be painfull to you, the tender social Connection which you have so highly enjoyed, must make the Struggle hard, but the Consideration that he is called to so honourable an Employment in the Service of his Country, I doubt not will greatly alleviate your Trouble. If during his Absence I can be of any Service in your Affairs, I hope you will command me freely, and be assured I shall be highly gratified in executing your Commands.—Judge Tyng of Dunstable will be the Bearer of this, there were two Actions of considerable Importance in one of which he was Plaintiff, and in the other Col. Eleazer Tyng, { 394 } both against Dr. Gardner and others.1 Mr. Adams was engaged for Dr. Gardner, and by the Clerks Minutes divers Papers filed in these Causes, were delivered to Mr. Adams, if they are at Braintree Judge Tyng will be obliged if you will let him look into them, and see whether some, which he must otherwise seek after, are among them. I do not propose, that Judge Tyng should take them as he was not Mr. Adams's Client, but if you will send them to Mr. Tudor there can be no Inconvenience as he is engaged on the same Side with Mr. Adams.

[salute] I am with most Esteem your most obedt. Servt.,

[signed] J Lowell
RC (Adams Papers); addressed: “To Mrs. Abigail Adams In Braintree.”
1. The cases were John Tyng v. Silvester Gardiner et al. and Eleazar Tyng v. Silvester Gardiner et al. (Eleazar was John's uncle; see sketches in Sibley-Shipton, Harvard Graduates , at 5:651–653, and 7:595–601, respectively.) They were part of the complex litigation over the Maine lands of the Plymouth or Kennebec Company, in which JA had been involved for some years before the Revolution; see his Diary and Autobiography , 1:54; 2:5–6; 3:280–282; and also a collection of printed tracts and MSS in the Robert Treat Paine Papers (MHi), mounted in a volume and labeled “Tyng v Gardiner / Kennebeck Purchase.” The particular cases to which Lowell alludes were subject to repeated delays and were in the courts until 1785, when, at length, the record of the Supreme Judicial Court reads: “Neither party appears.” See the letter immediately following, and Superior Court of Judicature, Minute Books 99, 105; Supreme Judicial Court, Minute Book 56; Records, June-Nov. 1785, fol. 21. Paine acted for the Kennebec Company in the later stages of this litigation.

Docno: ADMS-04-02-02-0314

Author: UNKNOWN
Recipient: Adams, Abigail
Date: 1778-02-23

—— —— to Abigail Adams

[salute] Madam

Mr. Adams for a long time has been engaged by the Kennebeck Company in a cause in which Colo. Tyng is a Party, which was reduced in one or more points to a special Verdict and was to have been argued this Court, but unfortunately being deprived of Mr. Adams to conduct the cause, by his sudden departure for France, the matter is suspended untill April, to give us time to provide for the debate.
When I had the pleasure to see Mr. Adams in Town he expected to conduct the cause and I gave him a Copy of the special Verdict, which with any other papers he may have left should be glad you will send by Colo. Tyng who will be so good as bring them to Boston.
I am not without expectations that Mr. Adams has left some minutes of importance to the Company as he promised me in consequence of his recommending Mr. Tudor to be joined with him, to confer with Tudor on the subject in dispute, who informs me he has { 395 } had no opportunity for it, and therefore hopes to be assisted by his advice on paper.1
If Mr. Adams has not mentioned any thing on this head to you, probably he did to the Young Gentleman who studied with him; should be much obliged to you to desire him to make sarch and if he finds any thing to seal it up and send it by this opportunity.
I sincerely hope Mr. Adams will have a safe and pleasant Passage; and that the consideration that he may be extensively usefull to his Country will console you who are more entimately connected, and his other Friends, in the absence of so agreable a Companion.

[salute] I am with great respect Your most obedint hum. servt.

RC (Adams Papers). Signature omitted inadvertently, but this doubtless indicates that the body of the letter is in a clerk's hand, prepared for another to sign. The intended signer was either a partner or agent of the Kennebec Company and may have been James Bowdoin. The tone and substance of the letter both suggest Bowdoin, but since he did not sign it and the clerk's hand has not been identified, this is only a plausible conjecture.
1. In R. T. Paine's collection of papers on Tyng v. Gardiner (see note on preceding letter), there are a few notes in JA 's hand which may or may not be the “minutes” here inquired for.
So secret and “sudden” had been JA 's preparations and departure that as late as 11 Feb. his friend and colleague William Tudor had written him from Cambridge: “Col. Henley waits upon You to engage You as Council upon the Prosecution against him by Genl. Burgoyne. Should You appear for him, which I hope You will, I would wish for an Opportunity of talking with You on the Subject. . . . Can You not come to Boston on Thursday or friday?”
(Adams Papers).