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Docno: ADMS-06-09-02-0296

Author: Adams, John
Recipient: Jenings, Edmund
Date: 1780-07-04

To Edmund Jenings

[salute] Dear Sir

After spending the day very happily with a Number of our Countrymen in Commemoration of our glorious Anniversary, I cannot close the Evening more agreably than by conversing with You.
I have three Letters of yours before me—10th—18th—29th—June. The Letter from Clinton was indeed as I am told by some Americans lately arrived, a mere Sport of Wit. I am told it was written by a General Howe, of General Washington's Army. It contained a great deal of Truth and Instruction. But I am Sorry to see our Countrymen imitate the Impositions of their Enemies—it may be best not to let the Name of the Writer go any further.1
I know your feelings have sufferd Tortures for Charlestown: mine have I assure You. I condole most sincerely with Mrs. Izard, Mrs. Lloyd and the other Americans with You, on this disaster. Yet be not dismayed—the English will hold it no longer than they did Boston or Philadelphia. You need not fear any body's giving up a good Government—Americans are not made of such Materials. The Spaniards have taken Mobile, and the English will soon be between two or three Fires. But if they had and were to hold quiet Possession of all the Great Seaport Towns upon the Continent, it would be no Conquest of America, and have very little Tendency that Way. I assure You, Sir, in the Year 1774, when We beheld this War only in Contemplation as a Contingency, as a probable or at least a possible future Event, We expected to lose all our Seaport Towns and laid our Account accordingly. We have done much better in this Respect than We expected.
You ask very properly Quomodo2 evacuate New York? I know of but one Way that is possible—that is make a Bargain, as Howe did with Washington to spare the Town of Boston from the flames, on Condition he would spare the British Troops from the Slaughter. I dont say that W. agreed to this; but Howe certainly offered it. I believe they could not obtain so good a Bargain now.
Mr. Digges has not been in Paris, that I know of, since my Arrival.
The Revolution which Congress have made in their Paper Money, is well recieved in America.

[salute] Adieu

[signed] J[ohn Adams]
RC in John Thaxter's hand (Adams Papers); endorsed: “ JA July 4th. 1780.” A piece torn from the manuscript has resulted in the loss of most of the signature.
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1. For the forged dispatch from Sir Henry Clinton to Lord George Germain, see JA 's letter of 21 May to C. W. F. Dumas, and note 1 (above). The source of JA 's information linking the forgery to “a General Howe, of General Washington's Army” is unknown, but if accurate would seem to implicate Maj. Gen. Robert Howe of North Carolina, then serving under Washington in the northern army ( DAB ). The editors, however, have found no corroborating evidence connecting Howe with the counterfeit dispatch.
2. That is, in what manner.

Docno: ADMS-06-09-02-0297

Author: Adams, John
Recipient: Jenings, Edmund
Date: 1780-07-05

To Edmund Jenings

[salute] Dr. sir

In the 116 page of the inclosed Mercury, you will find the Strictures upon Lord G. Germaines nonsense. I dont see them in the English Papers. I suppose no Printer dares insert them. But I Swore they shall be seen, and therefore I beg you to get them inserted in the Leyden or Amsterdam or the Hague Gazette or all three. If it cant be done without pay let them be paid. I will repay in a moment. If these appear, I will send those upon Conways, which have been also printed in the Mercury.
I care more about the sentiments of the rest of Europe, than the English.
RC (Adams Papers;) filmed at 5 June, Adams Papers, Microfilms, Reel No. 352.
1. The date is clearly an inadvertence because the enclosed copy of the Mercure de France was of 17 June and Jenings replied to this letter on 9 July (below). For JA 's replies to the speeches by Lord George Germain and Gen. Henry Seymour Conway on 5 May in the House of Commons mentioned in this letter, see JA 's letters of 17 and 28 May to Edmé Jacques Genet (both above). For Genet's publication of them in the Mercure, see notes 1 and 3 to each letter.

Docno: ADMS-06-09-02-0298

Author: Adams, John
Recipient: Huntington, Samuel
Recipient: President of Congress
Date: 1780-07-06

To the President of Congress, No. 89

Paris, 6 July 1780. Dupl , both text and signature in John Thaxter's hand (PCC, No. 84, II, f. 165–171). printed: Wharton, ed., Dipl. Corr. Amer. Rev. , 3:833– 837.
This letter, received by Congress on 19 Feb. 1781 ( JCC , 19:174– 175), includes a list, taken from the Courier de l'Europe of 27 June, of vessels captured or destroyed by all belligerents since the beginning of the war. Lamenting the loss of so many American naval vessels, Adams urged Congress to “give great Attention to their Navy; to the Augmentation of Ships; the Multiplication of Seamen; the Improvement of Discipline and the formation of Officers.” It was necessary that Congress take such action and Americans “cherish their own Navy,” because “no other Nation would grieve very much at the total destruction of it, before the Conclusion of a Peace. I am sorry to say this, but I have heard such Hints as convince me that it is my Duty to put Congress on their Guard, and to intreat them to leave nothing unattempted to put their Marine upon the best footing in their Power.”
Dupl , both text and signature in John Thaxter's hand (PCC, No. 84, II, f. 165–171). printed: (Wharton, ed., Dipl. Corr. Amer. Rev. , 3:833– 837.)
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