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Browsing: Diary of John Quincy Adams, Volume 2


Docno: ADMS-03-02-02-0002-0010-0024

Author: Adams, John Quincy
Date: 1787-10-24

24th.

At about 10 this morning I set off for Hingham. Mr. Thaxter and Miss Duncan, went somewhat earlier. I got there between 11 and 12, and went immediately to the meeting house: it was very much crowded, and I found great difficulty to get in, I finally obtained however a very good place. They began by singing a good anthem extremely well. The first prayer was made by Mr. [] .1 Mr. Hilliard then preach'd a sermon from II Corinthians, I, 24. Not that we have dominion over your faith but are helpers of your joy.2 He delivered his Sentiments very freely though many of them were in oppositions, to the prevailing customs. It was the best sermon I ever heard him preach, and upon this occasion it was natural that he should exert himself. Mr. [] 3 gave the { 309 } charge; Dr. Hitchcock made the ordaining prayer, Mr. Shute gave the right hand of fellowship, and Mr. Haven made the last prayer.4 The ceremonies were then concluded by another anthem as well perform'd as the first. From thence the company retired, I went to pay my compliments to Mr. Ware, my old chum; and to tell him how happy I am to see him so well settled already. I intended to dine there but was called away with Mr. Gannett by Mr. Caleb Thaxter, where we went and dined. There were between thirty and forty persons at table, but chiefly young gentlemen. After dinner we had two or three songs and then walk'd. We went to Coll. Rice's,5 where we found a similar company, smoking and singing.
We rambled about till almost seven o'clock; and I then went to Mrs. Derby's Hall, where, it was said there was to be a dance. We found here a scene of confusion similar to that which we had last spring at Sandwich:6 however by a manoeuvre, which pack'd off about one half of the company, our numbers were so much reduced, that we were able to maintain a degree of order and regularity. I was so lucky as to draw Miss S. Smith of Sandwich for a partner, and danced with her, a great part of the evening. It was between two and three in the morning before we broke up. I then went to Coll. Thaxter's,7 supp'd and, at about half after 3, went to bed with Charles.
1. Left blank in MS .
2. Timothy Hilliard, A Sermon Preached October 24th, 1787, at the Ordination of the Rev. Henry Ware, to the Pastoral Care of the First Church in Hingham, Salem, 1788.
3. Left blank in MS ; the charge was given by Rev. John Brown, minister of the First Congregational Society of Cohasset (same, p. 26).
4. Probably Rev. Gad Hitchcock, minister of the second parish of Pembroke (now Hanson); Daniel Shute, minister of the Second Congregational Church at Hingham; probably Jason Haven, minister of the First Congregational Church at Dedham (Sprague, Annals Amer. Pulpit, 8:29–31; Hilliard, Sermon, p. 27; Weis, Colonial Clergy of N.E. ).
5. Col. Nathan Rice, one of JA 's former law clerks (JA, Legal Papers, 1:cviii).
6. See entry for 18 April (above).
7. Col. John Thaxter Sr. (1721–1802), uncle of AA by marriage to Anna Quincy, and father of John Thaxter Jr. (History of the Town of Hingham, Massachusetts, 4 vols. in 3, Hingham, 1893, 3:232).

Docno: ADMS-03-02-02-0002-0010-0025

Author: Adams, John Quincy
Date: 1787-10-25

25th.

The town is not so much crowded this day; as it was yesterday. That Class of people which is called by some persons the rabble, (by which word is meant people, who have neither a fortune nor an education at our university, alias a liberal education) went off chiefly last night: and there now remains nothing but { 310 } the genteel company, or otherwise people who have no business, to call them from scenes of dissipation. I walk'd in the morning with Mr. Ware, and Coll. Rice down to the landing place where I found a number of people employ'd in preparing fish. There is some little business of this kind done here.
After returning into Town I saunter'd about till dinner time.
Foster, Learned, and Vose with his Sisters went away before dinner. Dined at Coll. Rice's. The Company was not large; the character that I remarked the most was a Captain Clap, who is all, soldier. He appears to delight in whatever is military; Coll. Rice's son, a lad of 7 years old, committed some little impropriety; “You rogue,” Says Clap, “nothing but your age can excuse and protect you.” Who but a genuine Son of Mars, would have thought of correcting, in that manner a boy of 7 years?
It was proposed that we should have another dance this night, and Blake and Perkins a couple of young fellows, both strangers in town, undertook to be managers. We drank tea, a number of us, at Mr. Caleb Thaxter's, and at about 7, went again to Mrs. Derby's Hall, where a partition between two chambers had been taken down which made it much more convenient than it was the night before. There were about 30 gentlemen and forty ladies: about 20 couples could stand up at once, and the rest amused themselves either with conversation, or with playing at cards. Between 2 and 3, we broke up, and I retired with our young ladies. We sat about half an hour at Col'l Thaxter's, and I then went to bed. But a number of the lads, after conducting their ladies home retained the music, and went a serenading all over the Town; till day-light.