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Browsing: Papers of John Adams, Volume 10


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Docno: ADMS-06-10-02-0123

Author: Digges, Thomas
Author: Church, William Singleton
Recipient: Adams, John
Date: 1780-10-06

From Thomas Digges

[salute] Dr. Sir

I am thankful for your late favor1 and shall send you the Books desird by first opportunity.
Mr. Henr. Laurens was brought to Town last night, rather in better health. He was lodgd that night in the Messengers House in Scotland Yard, and denyd all sort of communication with his friends—or those who wishd to speak to Him. He was Examined at noon at Lord G. Germains and committed by a Warrant of Justice Addington a close prisoner to the Tower—orders that no person whatever speaks to Him. These folks are so foolishly changable that most likely in a few days the severity of His confinement may be relaxd. At present two men are always in the same room with Him, and two soldiers without.2You shall hear more from me by next post.3
No news from the Westward of any sort. The general beleif is that the privy Council yesterday have determind to prosecute the war further in Ama. with vigour—perhaps the fools have concluded that as they have catchd Mr. Laurens they can conquer America. I can see no other reason for their supposition of success in the further prosecution of that war.
I am your mo ob ser
[signed] WS.C
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RC (Adams Papers); addressed: “A Monsiéur Monsr. <Ferdinando Raymond San> Chez Monsiéur Henri Shorn Amsterdam”; endorsed by John Thaxter: “W.S.C Octr. 6. 1780.”
1. Of 25 Sept. (above).
2. Digges' report agrees in most respects with that of Henry Laurens in his “Narrative.” There Laurens, who was committed to the Tower under a charge of high treason, gives a brief account of his examination before Lord George Germain and several others, including Lord Hillsborough and Lord Stormont (Laurens, “Narrative,” p. 24–25). A longer account of the interrogation appeared in the London newspapers (see, for example, the London Courant, 7 Oct.; London Chronicle, 7–10 Oct.). For the printing of a French translation of Digges' report in the supplement to the Gazette de Leyde of 7 Nov., see Dumas' letter of 7 Nov. (below).
3. Of 10 Oct. (below).

Docno: ADMS-06-10-02-0124

Author: Adams, John
Recipient: Jenings, Edmund
Date: 1780-10-07

To Edmund Jenings

[salute] Dear Sir

Mr. Bowdoin, a gentleman of Virginia, is passing through Brussells in his Way to France. He is a young American of good Character here, and I have the honour to recommend him to your Notice.
Pray what think you, of the Face of affairs? According to present Appearances a year or two more, will probably deliver our country from the Ennemies within it, tho it may not bring Peace. The K. of England has so much Spirit and Firmness, that it is not to be expected he will make Peace.
The English have commenced Hostilities as usual, without a declaration of War against the Dutch in St. Martins,1 but I suppose this will be pocketed like all former Insults. The Dutch however are some what enraged at it, for the present. I have not so regular Intelligence from England here as I had in Paris, but I suppose the ministry are omnipotent in Parliament although the omnipotence of Parliament, and of the British Navy, Seems to be Somewhat reduced.
I am sir respectfully yours
[signed] John Adams
Between you and me, I shall stay here, untill the Arrival of Mr. Laurens if it is till Spring.
1. The Gazette de Leyde of 6 Oct. contained a brief report, followed by more detailed accounts in the issue of 10 Oct., of a British descent on the Dutch half of the West Indian island of St. Martin. According to the reports, seven British warships appeared off the island on 9 August. The British commander, stating that he was acting under the orders of Adm. Sir George Rodney, demanded that the Dutch governor surrender the American vessels anchored in the roadstead and, to enforce his order, landed two hundred marines and threatened to burn the Dutch settlement. Having no recourse, the governor capitulated. The report in the issue of 6 Oct. was followed by the observation that there was apparently no limit to the British navy's abuse of its power.
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