[dateline] Philadelphia July 17. 1776
Your Letter of the Eighth contains Intelligence of an interesting Nature to the Public
as well as to me, and my Family in particular.—The Small Pox is so terrible an Enemy
that it is high Time to subdue it.—I am under the greatest Obligation to you, Sir,
and Mrs. Smith for your kind Offer of the Accommodations of your House to Mrs. Adams
and my Children. I shall be very, very anxious, untill I hear further, and if it was
possible I would be in Boston as soon as an Horse could carry me. But this is the
most unlucky Time, that ever happened. Such Business is now before Us, that I cannot
in Honour and in duty to the public, stir from this Place, at present. After a very
few Months, I shall return: But in the mean Time, I shall suffer inexpressible distress,
on Account of my Family. My only Consolation is that they have no small Number of
very kind Friends.
We are in hourly Expectation of some important Event at New York. We hope there will
be a sufficient Number of Men there, to give the Enemy a proper Reception. But am
sorry the Massachusetts have not sent along some of their Militia, as requested. My
most affectionate Regards to Mrs. Smith and the family. I am yr.