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. Pure speculation suggests that Catharine Louisa Smith, wife of AA
's and Elizabeth Shaw's ne'er-do-well brother, William Smith Jr., is the subject of
this passage. AA
had told JA
how good Mrs. Smith was to Rev. William Smith in his old age, and added: “to be otherways
she must be a monster of ingratitude for to her he has supplied the place of Father
Mother and husband” (24 Aug. 1783
, and note 3
, above). AA
herself had taken her brother's child Louisa Catharine into her home, but she was
having to return her to her mother before joining JA
Guessing further, the terms of Rev. Smith's will may not have pleased Mrs. Smith.
She received the income from his farm in Lincoln, Mass., on which she and her young
children lived, but the property itself remained under the control of Smith's executors,
Richard Cranch and Dr. Tufts. Moreover Rev. Smith cut her out of any share in “the
remainder of my Estate both Real and personal, not before disposed of.” See Rev. William
Smith's will, 12 Sept. 1783
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.