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Browsing: Papers of John Adams, Volume 4


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Docno: ADMS-06-04-02-0002

Author: Adams, John
Recipient: Warren, James
Date: 1776-02-11

To James Warren

[salute] Dr sir

Mr. Archibald Buchannan, and Mr. Walter Tolley both of Maryland, and hearty Friends of America, introduced to me by my Friend Mr. Chace [Chase], are bound to the Camp, and Mr. Chace requested a Letter from me.
{ 21 }
Chace is a Man of common sense.
I received your Packett.1 I am obliged to you for opening the Letter from our Friend Mr. Adams, and if you had opened all the others, you should have been equally welcome, altho I would not give a similar Permission to more than two or three other Persons in the World. I have no Correspondences for private Amusement, or Personal Interest, and therefore most Letters to me, might be seen by any public Man of public Virtue, good understanding and Common Decency without Danger, Inconvenience, or offence. But as so many Persons who have not all those Qualities, become in the Course of things public Persons, We cannot be too cautious I find what We write, whom We write to, and how it is conveyed.
I have Seen the Copy of a Letter.2 Let the Writers Passions fume away, unnoticed. Peepers often Spy disagreable objects. Let them pay for their Peeping. I have Reason to complain of Negligence in one Gentleman and I fear, of Unkindness in another upon this occasion, but I will not complain. They shall take all Advantages against me that they can get. They cannot hurt me nor you. The only Advantage they have got upon this occasion is to torment themselves, and gratify others. The Gentleman promised me to deliver those Letters into the Hand of Mr. S. A. but he did not.

[salute] I have only this Moment to write. Yours, sincerely,

RC (MHi:Warren-Adams Coll., filed under 11 Feb. 1775); docketed: “J A Lettr Feby. 11. 1776.”
1. Warren to JA, 31 Jan. (above), was accompanied by a packet of letters that had arrived at Watertown after JA had left for Philadelphia. Among them was the letter from Samuel Adams to JA of 15 Jan., which Warren had opened, and which is printed above under its date.
2. That is, Robert Treat Paine to Warren, 5 Jan., enclosed in Warren's letter to JA of 31 Jan. and there printed.
Cite web page as: Founding Families: Digital Editions of the Papers of the Winthrops and the Adamses, ed.C. James Taylor. Boston: Massachusetts Historical Society, 2014.
http://www.masshist.org/apde2/