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Browsing: Adams Family Correspondence, Volume 10


Docno: ADMS-04-10-02-0117

Author: Adams, John
Recipient: Adams, Abigail
Date: 1794-05-26

John Adams to Abigail Adams

[salute] My dearest Friend

I shall inclose with this, some Letters between Randolph and Hammond which will shew you how quarelsome they are.1 Poor Fellows! They both desire Peace, but think themselves obliged to wrangle for their Countries.
It is fashionable to charge Wars upon Kings: but I think Le Peuple souvereign is as inflamable, and as proud and at the Same time less systematick, uniform & united: so that it is not so easy for them to avoid Wars. We have laboured very hard to preserve our Tranquility: but the Peuple souvereign is continually committing some Intemperance or Indiscretion or other tending to defeat all our Precautions. if We are involved in a War, my head heart and hands shall be guiltless of the Crime of provoking it. But it will be my Duty to Submit to the Legal Voice & Decree of my Country.
We have fine Rains here, for three days past, and I hope you enjoy a similar Blessing
{ 191 }
I shall take Leave on saturday 31. of May: but cannot hope to get home before the 10 or 12th of June. The Journey lies before me, like a Mountain— I am too old and too feeble for these long Journeys, dry sessions and uncomfortable Scænes— I am at an Age when I ought to be at home with my Family.
I Sent 600 dollars to John last Week, which is our whole Allowance till september.2
I wish you an agreable Election. Who will be Lieutenant Governor Gill or Gerry?
I wrote to Dr Willard, sometime ago a Resignation of the Chair of the Academy of Arts and sciences.— It would be a farce for me to hold it any longer.3
My Duty to my Mother— Tell my Brother that I Suppose he was for War to make himself popular: but I am very sorry to find that warlike sentiments are popular in Quincy. I am glad he is chosen however and hope he will get our Town back to the County of Suffolk.
Adieu— My dearest Friend Adieu
[signed] J. A.
RC (Adams Papers); internal address: “Mrs A.”; endorsed: “May 26.th / 1794.”
1. The enclosures have not been found but were likely copies of correspondence between Edmund Randolph and George Hammond published initially in the Philadelphia Gazette, 24 May. Randolph wrote to Hammond on 20 May to protest what Randolph believed was encouragement of Native Americans in “hostile dispositions towards the United States” and reports that British troops were encroaching on U.S. territory. Hammond replied on the 22d, disputing Randolph’s interpretation of events and reminding him of the United States’ failure to cede land in Vermont that the British considered rightfully theirs. Both letters were read in the House of Representatives on 21 and 23 May, immediately after which Congress continued its discussion of a bill to establish a nonintercourse policy with Britain (Annals of Congress, 3d Cong., 1st sess., p. 713, 715).
2. On 24 May JA wrote a brief note to JQA enclosing $600 and asking JQA to deliver it to AA (John Jay Smith, ed., American Historical and Literary Curiosities, 2d ser., N.Y., 1860, plate 62). On that same day, JA also wrote to AA informing her, “Yesterday I asked and obtained leave of the Senate to be absent after next Fryday. I shall therefore leave this City on Saturday the Thirty first day of May: but the heat and Dust & Fleas and Bedbugs &c will render it difficult, if not impossible to get home to you, in less than ten days. By the Tenth of June I hope to embrace you” (Adams Papers).
3. JA wrote to Rev. Joseph Willard, president of Harvard and vice president of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, on 6 May to communicate his decision not to accept future elections as president of the Academy. JA noted, “If I have ever entertained a hope that I might at some time or other have been of some Use to that respectable Society, the State of Publick Affairs has hitherto wholly prevented me; and the present and future Prospects render it wholly impossible for me to give the Smallest Attention to the Interest or Honour of that Institution which has such just and so important Claims upon its President” (MBAt:American Academy, Letters). No reply from Willard has been found, but JA remained president of the Academy until 1813; see vol. 9:390–391, note 1.

Docno: ADMS-04-10-02-0118

Author: Adams, John
Recipient: Adams, John Quincy
Date: 1794-05-26

John Adams to John Quincy Adams

[salute] My dear son.

The Secretary of State called upon me this morning to inform me by order of the President, that it was determined to nominate you to go to Holland as Resident Minister.1 The President desired to know if I thought you would accept. I answered that I had no Authority from you— But it was my Opinion that you would And that it would be my Advice to you, that you should.
The Salary is 4500 Dollars a Year and as much for an Outfit.
Your Knowledge of Dutch and French: Your Education in that Country: your Acquaintance with my old Friends there will give you Advantages, beyond many others.— It will require all your Prudence and all your other Virtues as well as all your Talents.
It will be expected that you come here to See the President & Secretary of State, before you embark. I shall write you as soon as the Nomination is made and advised by Senate. Be Secret. Dont open your Mouth to any human Being on the Subject except your Mother. Go and see with how little Wisdom this World is governed.2
Adieu
[signed] John Adams
RC (Adams Papers); internal address: “John Quincy Adams Esq.” Tr (Adams Papers).
1. JQA’s nomination as U.S. minister resident to the Netherlands, replacing William Short, had apparently been under discussion well before this time. On the same day as this letter, JA received word from Edmund Randolph: “You will be so good, as to let it be understood between us, that the mention, which some time ago was made to you by me, of the nomination of your son, was purely confidential between us; and that on any occasion, which you may have to speak of the time, when it was first known to you, you will refer to the communication of this day only” (Adams Papers). JQA’s actual appointment was held up for a few days until the Senate could deal with the appointment of Short to Spain; see JA to JQA, 30 May, 2d letter, and note 1, below.
2. On 3 June, upon receiving this letter, JQA commented at length about it in his Diary: “When I returned to my lodgings at the close of the Evening; upon opening a Letter from my father which I had just before taken from the post-office, I found it contained information that Edmund Randolph, Secretary of State of the United States had on the morning of the day, when the Letter was dated called on the writer and told him that the President of the United States had determined to nominate me to go to the Hague as Resident Minister from the United States. This intelligence was to me very unexpected and indeed surprizing. I had laid down as a principle that I never would solicit for any public office whatever, and from this determination no necessity has hitherto compelled me to swerve. From the principles of the same nature which my father has always rigidly observed, I knew that no influence nor even a request of any kind from him could have occasioned this intention of the President. And yet I was very sensible, that neither my years, my experience, my reputation nor my talents could entitle me to an office of so much respectability. It is however of no service to indulge conjecture upon the subject.”
A week later, on 10 June, he met with JA, { 193 } who by that time had returned to Quincy. JQA wrote in his Diary, “I found that my nomination had been as unexepcted to him [JA] as to myself, and that he had never uttered a word upon which a wish on his part could be presumed, that a public office should be conferred upon me. His opinion upon the subject agrees with my own; but his satisfaction at the appointment is much greater than mine. I wish I could have been consulted before it was irrevocably made. I rather wish it had not been made at-all. My friends on the other hand appear to be very much pleased with it, and seem to consider it as a subject of pure and simple congratulation” (D/JQA/20, APM Reel 23).

Docno: ADMS-04-10-02-0119

Author: Adams, John
Recipient: Adams, John Quincy
Date: 1794-05-26

John Adams to John Quincy Adams

[salute] My dear son

Since, I wrote you this morning, at the request of Mr Randolph a thousand things occur to me to say to you, but as I have not time at present I shall write you from day to day.
You will have a Collection to make of the Journals of Congress and the Laws of the Union; and all the Reports of our Ministers of State to take with you.
You must remember all the Relations of the U. S. with all foreign Nations.
In holland you must be very cautious between Patriots and Stathouderiens.1
In your Dispatches you must be very cautious and delicate in casting Reflections upon Nations, souvereigns, and even Courts and Parties. Write nothing which can give personal, party or national offence: unless the public good as well as the Truth, absolutely demand it of you.— You will have Loans & Money Matters to attend to. Study therefore, the Calculations necessary.
You must make yourself Master of all our disputes with England Spain, France. &c
You must Study the Lines & Boundaries of the United States.— You will have to watch the English Ambassador & all the Anglomanes. But I have not time.
Adieu
[signed] J. A.
RC (Adams Papers); internal address: “J. Q. A.”
1. The people of the Netherlands had long been divided loosely into two political parties: the Patriot Party and the Orangist, or Stadholder, Party. Although there were many divisions within each of these broad groups, the Patriots generally favored political reform, including the abolition of the hereditary position of stadholder, while the Orangists supported retaining the existing government and the rule of the stadholder (currently William V of the House of Orange). In 1786–1787, revolution in the Netherlands had led to the temporary expulsion of William V and the arrest of his wife, Wilhelmina, but an invasion by the Prussian Army restored the stadholder and overthrew the Patriot leaders, who were pushed into exile in France. By 1794, the French Army was prepared to invade the Netherlands, and by 1795, Patriots, in conjunction with the { 194 } French, had formally established the Batavian Republic as a client state of the French Republic and permanently exiled William V (Schama, Patriots and Liberators, p. xix, 14–15). See also TBA to JA, 19 Oct., and note 2, below.

Docno: ADMS-04-10-02-0120

Author: Adams, John Quincy
Recipient: Adams, John
Date: 1794-05-26

John Quincy Adams to John Adams

[salute] Dear Sir

Mr: Dorr obtained a passage in the vessel with Mr: Jay, and Mr: Jones, had an opportunity to go from Newport, so that they had no occasion to make the application to Congress, in behalf of which I requested your favour.
I drew another petition some time since, for the manufacturers of snuff and tobacco in this Town, making representations against the tax proposed upon those articles. I know not whether you have seen this petition, or in what light it appeared if you did. In the house of Representatives I believe it was not read, and the tax I understand has pass’d.1 I was somewhat puzzled for reasons to suggest against it.
The Session of Congress, I presume is approaching to a close; The prospects of immediate War appear to blow over. Whether we shall be able to make any terms of accommodation with G. Britain, and obtain proper satisfaction for her insolence and violence is still very questionable, but it is of infinite importance that we should preserve Peace, until war shall become a duty.
It is therefore fortunate for the Country, that the passionate measures which have been proposed, were all defeated. That for the suspension of intercourse with G. Britain was one of the most important of them. Your decision of that question probably gives the tone to our affairs for one season further. The fate of this Country depended upon that vote.— I expected it would have renewed the abusive system which was for some time so rancorously pursued, but which for some time past has drooped away. But very little has been said upon the subject, and I have not seen a single speculation in the prints upon it.
The cessation of the embargo is offensive to our Jacobins, who are reduced to the argument, that either the Congress were precipitate in laying it on, or imprudent in taking it off. I have silenced some of them, by avowing the former as my opinion.
You have seen the operation of democratic clubs, in this Town, by the dismission of Mr: Jones and the election of Mr: Morton as a { 195 } representative. Morton has of late been a violent sans-culotte and faction covers at least as great a multitude of sins as Charity.
The opposite party have not so much industry, and have not the advantage of an organized system. Otis had about 200 votes but did not obtain his election. Jarvis was formerly his warm political friend, and probably viewed him as a disciple of his own; but finding him untractable, and rather falling into the other scale, he has forsaken him, and of course carried off a powerful interest. Jarvis’s electioneering influence in this Town, is very great.
I think I have every day less ambition than the former, to pursue a political career. In my profession I trudge along, without eminence, and without total idleness. I see very few things in this life beyond the wants of nature, that I desire: and whether it be philosophy or insensibility, I find myself contented with my state as it is.
I hope to see you in the course of a few days, and remain in the meantime affectionately your Son
[signed] J.Q. Adams.
RC (Adams Papers); addressed: “The Vice-President of the United States / <Philadelphia.> / Quincy / near Boston”; endorsed: “JQA 1794.”
1. A copy of JQA’s petition has not been found in the Adams Papers, but on 1 May a resolution was proposed in the House of Representatives for a tax on snuff and tobacco. The next day, a memorial of Philadelphia tobacco manufacturers was read opposing the resolution. After considerable debate over the next several weeks, an “Act laying certain duties upon snuff and refined sugar” was approved on 5 June. It included an eight-cent tax per pound of U.S.-manufactured snuff. Additionally, all imported snuff would be taxed at twelve cents per pound and all imported tobacco at four cents per pound (Annals of Congress, 3d Cong., 1st sess., p. 620, 622–623, 1464–1471).

Docno: ADMS-04-10-02-0121

Author: Adams, Abigail
Recipient: Adams, John
Date: 1794-05-27

Abigail Adams to John Adams

Thanks to the Father of the Rain, and the Bountifull dispencer of the dews of Heaven, who has plentifully waterd the dry and thirsty Earth. the Fields recover their verdure, and the little Hills rejoice. the drooping vine rears its head and the witherd flower Blooms anew.

“join every living soul,

Beneath the spacious temple of the sky,

In adoration join; and, ardent raise

one general song! To Him ye vocal gales

Breathe soft, whose spirit in your freshness

Breathes:

{ 196 }

Soft rool your insense, herbs, and fruits and flowers

In mingled clouds to Him; whose sun exalts

whose Breath perfumes you, and whose pencil

paints”1

Indeed my dearest Friend it would rejoice your Heart to behold the change made in the appearene of all Nature, after one of our old fashiond Election storms as we used to term them. I hope we may be further blessd by repeated showers.
I this day received yours of the 19th of May. I know not what became of the letter you mention. such a one there was, nor do I recollect a Syllable of its contents, excepting asking your advise about the land which was the peice owned formerly by Margeret vesey. I had 72 pounds bid for it, but it sold at 60 dollers pr acre and was purchased by dr Phips— I also mentiond that the Name of Adams might be supposed in high estimation, since by the returns received we had reason to suppose that our Govenour & Leiut Govenour were of that Name, but one & the same Man. your Brother too had that day been chosen Rep’ve for this Town of which I informd you, but do not recollect any thing further. I might write a string of Blessings upon the Democrats their clubs—&c but as nothing I could say of them is more than they merrit, they are welcome to make the most of it, and Chronical it, if they get it.
“You caution our son to be reservd prudent cautious and silent” he is I believe all this. you bid him curb—his vanity. I know not whose praise would so soon tend to excite it, as one for whom he has so great respect and veneration, and whose judgment he so much relies upon— I will not say that all my Geese are swan I hope however that I have no occasion to Blush for the conduct of any of my Children. perhaps I build more expectation upon the rising Fame and Reputation of one of them, than of an other, but where much is given, much shall be required. I know their virtues and I am not blind to their failings—let him who is without cast the first stone.
The Jacobines are very Angry that Congress leaves them at their Liberty, and permits them with their Eyes open to rush on to destruction. that they want Gaurdians is true enough, but no one obliges them to risk their property to French British or Spanish pirates
others I believe wishd the Embargo continued from real Patriotic motives.
{ 197 }
Speculation, has been going on rapidly.
I understand the Term impatiently yours but I had a good mind to be a little Roguish and ask a Question, but I think I will only say that I am most Patiently Your ever constant / and affectionate
[signed] A Adams
RC (Adams Papers); docketed: “1794 AA to JA.”
1. James Thomson, “A Hymm on the Seasons,” lines 37–41, 56–58.

Docno: ADMS-04-10-02-0122

Author: Adams, John
Recipient: Adams, Abigail
Date: 1794-05-27

John Adams to Abigail Adams

[salute] My dearest Friend

It is proper that I should apprize you, that the President has it in contemplation to Send your son to Holland, that you may recollect yourself and prepare for the Event. I make this Communication to you, in Confidence, at the desire of the President communicated to me Yesterday by the Secretary of State. You must keep it an entire Secret, untill it shall be announced to the Public in the Journal of the Senate. But our son must hold himself in readiness to come to Philadelphia to converse with the President, secretary of State Secretary of the Treasury &c and receive his Commissions and Instructions, without Loss of time. He will go to Providence, in the Stage and thence to New York by Water and thence to Philadelphia in the Stage.— He will not sett out however untill he is in form’d of his Appointment.— Perhaps the Senate may negative him, and then his Journey will be unnecessary.
I shall go in the Stage on saturday to New York, and be at home I hope by the 12 of June
Adieu
[signed] J. A.
RC (Adams Papers); internal address: “Mrs A.”

Docno: ADMS-04-10-02-0123

Author: Adams, John
Recipient: Adams, John Quincy
Date: 1794-05-29

John Adams to John Quincy Adams

[salute] My Dear son

Yesterday the Senate advised the Appointment of Mr short to Madrid, but there has as yet been no nomination to the Vacancy at the Hague. The Person however is determined on, and the Nomination will probably be made as soon as I am gone homewards— I have but one night and an half more to stay here.
This Nomination, which is the Result of the Presidents own Observations and Reflections, is as politick, as it is unexpected. It will { 198 } be a Proof that Sound Principles in Morals and Government, are cherished by the Executive of the United States and that Study, Science and Literature are recommendations which will not be overlook’d. It will or at least it ought to have in England and Holland more Effect, than any Thing that has been done, except perhaps the Appointment of Mr Jay. It is a Pledge given by the American Cabinet, that they are not Ennemies to a rational form of Government; and that they are not hurried away by a wild Enthusiasm for every unmeaning Cry of Liberty, Republicanism and Equality.— It will be a Serious Trust for the Man appointed. It ought to make a deep Impression on his Mind. Such Trusts are Sacred Things. The Law of Nations, and Diplomatique Researches, should engage his early Attention as well as the Dutch Language: but especially every Thing relative to the Interests of the U. S.— a few Years Spent in the present Grade, will recommend him to Advancement to higher stages and larger Spheres.
The Interests Views and Motions of the Belligerent Powers, will engage his constant Attention and employ all his sagacity.
He must come here and read before he goes all Mr shorts & Mr Dumas Letters—1 He must consult with The President Mr Randolph and Mr Hamilton.
He must attend a little to his Dress and Person. No Man alive is more Attentive to these Things than the President. neat at least and handsome.
When he gets to Europe he cannot keep a Coach, nor keep House— Dress is an abominably expensive Article—but he will not run into it I hope.— He may dress and ought to dress as handsomely as any of them: but he ought not to change so often. Economy must be his study and his Practice.
In his Dispatches he ought to be very cautious, and he ought to employ all the Elegance and Art of his Pen.
I shall drop hints broken hints from time to time for I have many Things to say.
Dumas Luzac, Willinks, Vanstaphorst, Crommeline’s &c will be your first Acquaintances:2 but you must be upon your guard even with them
Adieu
[signed] J. A
RC (Adams Papers); internal address: “J. Q. A.” Tr (Adams Papers).
1. Charles William Frederic Dumas had served as the de facto U.S. chargé d’affaires in the Netherlands since the 1770s, working closely and corresponding frequently with JA. His correspondence with Congress, 1776–1796, is contained in the PCC, No. 93 (JA, { 199 } D&A3:9–10). For William Short’s papers, see DLC:William Short Papers and DNA:RG 59, Diplomatic Correspondence.
2. Jean Luzac, Wilhem & Jan Willink, Nicolaas & Jacob van Staphorst, and Daniel Crommelin were all Dutch associates of JA when he served as minister there. For Luzac, see vol. 4:xiv; for Crommelin, see JQA, Diary, 1:58.

Docno: ADMS-04-10-02-0124

Author: Adams, John
Recipient: Adams, John Quincy
Date: 1794-05-30

John Adams to John Quincy Adams

[salute] My dear son

Yesterday the Senate received a Message from The President of the United States, containing a Nomination of John Quincy Adams of Massachusetts to be Resident Minister of U. S. at the Hague: and this day the Senate are to Say whether they Advise & consent to his Appointment or not.
Mr Monroe, who is appointed Minister Plenipotentiary to France, Yesterday desired me to mention to You in my first Letter, that he was very happy to hear of your nomination and that he hoped for a good Understanding and a good Correspondence with you.
You must commit your Business to Otis Lowell or Sullivan, and prepare yourself to come to Philadelphia. You must be introduced to all our Ministers: to all the Foreign Ministers: and you must read all the Dispatches in the office from me, from Dumas & from short: and all the other Dispatches from Spain France & England, if you can before you go.
When here you must make a Collection of all our Journals, Laws, Reports and Negotiations which are in Print for twenty Years, to carry with you.
I Sett out tomorrow Morning at two O Clock in the Stage for New York, and as I mean to go by Providence I hope to see you, before you are ready to sett out for this City.
It is a Serious Trust that is about to be committed to you. I hope you will reflect upon it with due Attention, collect yourself, lett no little Weaknesses escape you, and devote yourself to the service of your Country: and may the Blessing of Heaven attend you— so prays your affectionate / Father
[signed] John Adams
RC (Adams Papers); internal address: “J. Q. A.” Tr (Adams Papers).

Docno: ADMS-04-10-02-0125

Author: Adams, John
Recipient: Adams, John Quincy
Date: 1794-05-30

John Adams to John Quincy Adams

[salute] My Dear son

The Senate have this Day unanimously advised and consented to the Appointment of John Quincy Adams to the Hague.1
{ 200 }
If this Event should affect your Sensibility as much as it does mine, it will made a deep Impression upon Your Mind, both of the Importance of the Mission and of your obligation to Gratitude Fidelity and Exertion in the Discharge of the Duties of it.
At two O Clock tomorrow Morning I Sett off homewards.
Adieu
[signed] John Adams
RC (Adams Papers); internal address: “J. Q. A.” Tr (Adams Papers).
1. See Sen. Exec. Jour., 3d Cong., 1st sess., p. 159. JQA’s commission as minister resident, dated 30 May and signed by George Washington and Edmund Randolph, is in the Adams Papers.

Docno: ADMS-04-10-02-0126

Author: Rogers, Daniel Denison
Recipient: Adams, Abigail
Date: 1794-06-02

Daniel Denison Rogers to Abigail Adams

[salute] Dear Madam

After a Number of mortifying Disapointments I am happy at last in having it in my powers to present you a Miniature Copy from an Original Portrait of Mrs: R. done by Mr: Copley:—it appears to be well executed and I think a very good likeness—1
Nothing could have been more flattering to me than the Request you were pleas’d to make of a likeness of my Angel-Wife nor anything more mortifying than the Delays which have attended the obtaining it— If our departed friends are conscious of what passes here, and are susceptibe of additions to their Happiness, I am sure that a wish on your part to keep alive a kind Remembrance of a warm, tho’ transient friendship here will be an Increase of Happiness to our departed friend: whilst the Hope of a Renewall of it must be a fresh Source of Bliss— Mrs: Rogers’s Letters to me when absent, were replete with Acknowledgments of the Obligations she was under to you for the kindest Attentions and politeness: and she ever took delight in expressing her Love, Esteem and Respect—
It is pleasing to reflect that such friendships will be renewed hereafter: indeed it would be horrid, for a Moment to think that Death is eternally to seperate those who were particularly dear to each other on Earth:— Mrs: R. was a Woman of uncommon Virtue and unaffected Piety—the more I reflect on her Conduct in Life, the more estimable she rises:— in prosperity or Adversity: Health or Sickness, she was the never ceasing Adorer and Lover of her Creator and Redeemer—a pleasant, agreeable, amiable Companion— a warm faithfull Friend— she neglected no Opportunity for doing good, but study’d to be usefull and acted well her part in Life:—
{ 201 }
The Endeavour to embalm the Memory of a Woman of so many amiable, estimable Virtues, and pleasant agreeable Qualities in the Minds of her friends, as well as in my own; will, I hope, be delightfull to me thro’ Life, and may apologize for my being thus particular—
I beg you, Dear Madam, to present my Respects to the Vice-President on his return, and to believe me, with the greatest Esteem and Respect, Dear Madam, / Your much oblig’d & most obedt. Hum1. Servt.
[signed] Daniel Denison Rogers
RC (Adams Papers); addressed: “Mrs: Adams.”
1. The miniature has not been found, but for the original portrait of Abigail Bromfield Rogers by John Singleton Copley, see vol. 7:x–xi, 38.

Docno: ADMS-04-10-02-0127

Author: Adams, Thomas Boylston
Recipient: Adams, John
Date: 1794-06-03

Thomas Boylston Adams to John Adams

[salute] Dear sir

I arrived in Philada: on Sunday Morng & was not a little disappointed at finding you had taken your departure only the Day before; I hastened my return from Reading, that I might reach Philada: before you left it. My Journey has been as pleasant as I co[uld] wish, & I have returned not a little prejudiced in favor of the State of Pennsylvania. If my conject[ures] are well founded, it will be nearly the richest State in the U[ni]on in a very few years. The River Susquehannah is the widest & most shallow, I have ever seen; the Soil within 8 or 10 miles on each side of it, is a rich Black mould & the growth of the Trees, Grain & Grass appears peculiar to itself. I received great civility from the Gentlemen of the Bar in the different Counties; but I saw no place during the Circuit, which held forth sufficient inducements for me to quit Philadelphia— As yet I have not found an Office to my mind; my Present Landlord has concluded to stay in the same house, I must therefore find a Room in the Neighborhood for my purpose, or remove my Lodgings somewhere else—
Congress did not rise to Day as was expected— Some new Communications from the President relative to indian affairs, it is thought will detain them a day or two longer—1
With Respect / I am &ca
[signed] TB Adams
RC (Adams Papers). Some loss of text due to a torn manuscript.
1. George Washington sent a message to both houses of Congress on 2 June reporting that “certain communications, recently received from Georgia … materially change { 202 } the prospect of affairs in that quarter, and seem to render a war with the Creek nations more probable than it has been at any antecedent period.” He continued, “this intelligence brings a fresh proof of the insufficiency of the existing provisions of the laws, towards the effectual cultivation and preservation of peace with our Indian neighbors.” The papers Washington submitted included a variety of correspondence outlining growing tensions between members of the Creek Nation and Georgia residents—including members of the Georgia militia—which had culminated in a series of skirmishes. The reports also noted the inability of the U.S. military forces there to take effective action to stop the growing violence. Secretary of War Henry Knox submitted additional materials to Congress on the same subject on 5 June, but both houses adjourned on 9 June without taking any concrete action to address these concerns (Amer. State Papers, Indian Affairs, 1:482–487; Annals of Congress, 3d Cong., 1st sess., p. 117, 132, 745, 784).

Docno: ADMS-04-10-02-0128

Author: Shaw, Elizabeth Smith
Recipient: Adams, John Quincy
Date: 1794-06-09

Elizabeth Smith Shaw to John Quincy Adams

My Dear Nephew could not suppose a Friend to merit, could read a Paragraph in last Saturdays Paper, without feeling themselves gratified, by finding that the opinion of Persons of the highest eminence entirly coincided with their own—1
He who has obstinately, & undeviateingly persevered in a course of Study, who “can bring back at Eve, the manners of the Morn immaculate,”2 & steadily pursue the Path of Virtue, though Pleasures allure, & Temptations await him, is the only fit Person for the Publick to confide in. They shall bear the Palm, if they faint not And though “Confidence be a Plant of slow growth in the publick Mind,”3 yet when once rooted, it generally yeilds its Possessor a rich, & valuable Product.— I presume the desire of deserving the Esteem, & obtaining the Plaudit of your Country, will not lesson your anxiety, & Concern for her Interest— The late appointment of the Presidents will be an additional weight; & the Atlas of publick Care, which has for a long time oppressed you, will now (I fear) fix an indeliable [tr]ace upon your Brow
William Cranch of whom you ever speak with so much Love, & affection, has not yet become a Votary at the Shrine of Hymen— He pines—he languishes for the sweets of domestick Life; & as heaven has formed him with a Mind peculiarly suited for that State, I am grieved that Fortune has not blessed him with sufficient Property— As she is a fickle Dame I hope she will soon shew herself more kind—for if rectitude of Heart, & sweetness of Temper can entitle any One to her Favours W. C. has an undoubted Claim—
And now permit me, my worthy Nephew to congratulate you upon the cold apathy which you say has, (or you fancy has) taken { 203 } possession of your Breast— If real, it must be extremely advantageous to your Peace, & Tranquility—
When I have beheld you nobly struggling with those tender Passions, which few at your age, would have thought of contending with—& seen you sacrificing your own Inclinations, to Situation, & filial Duty, my Heart has honoured, & paid a silent Tribute to your merit— I knew that your Health suffered—& indeed I feared you would have fallen a Victim to the strength of your Reason, & your frozen Judgment
Perhaps, no one, knew better than myself, the strong emotions which tore, & agitated your Mind— I could have sat by your side & counted out Tear, for Tear— I longed to lighten your Heart—& to have you pour out all your Grief, into my feeling—faithful Bosom—
But you must pardon me, if I could not (feeling as my heart is) but smile at your fears, that the Tyrant Love, would never again take possession of your Breast, even though your Circumstances should permit you, to sollicit his recall— Believe me, my dear Nephew, if virtuous Friendship be the Basis, (& upon no other build) a Soul like yours, susceptive of every fine emotion, can never be in want of Objects to light the Torch, & place his affections upon— for there is no Principle in Phylosophy more just, than that a noble generous Heart, will gravitate towards O[ne] he finds in Unison with his own— And that there are Ladies possessed of those qualities of the Mind, & those Virtues of the Heart, which beggar the “wealth of Ormus, & of Ind”—4 every Year evinces, & introduces upon the Stage of Life, some new Candidate for the nuptial State—
Amiable Minds are said to be the most susceptive of Love— Your Heart has felt his Power, & bowed full many a time at the Shrine of Beauty, & Excellence— Yet let me hope, that whenever you may wish to pay your Vows at the Altar of Hymen, you may find a Daughter who excelleth them all—in real worth, as in Beauty—Who is deserving of your highest Esteem, & tenderest Love—One, who (as the Poet says) “looks like Nature, in the Worlds first bloom”—5 And when judgment, & cool Reason gives a sanction to your Choice, then may you find all your Sacrifices—all your Anxieties—Your daily Labours—& midnight Toils amply rewarded in the Love, & affection of this happy fair One—
“Happy they—the happiest of their kind, whom gentler Stars unite, in one fate, their Hearts—their fortunes, & their Beings blend”—6
{ 204 }
Perhaps you may wonder that I should take up the Ideas in your Letter of May 23d. 1793,7 & notice them at so late a period— But be assured I have read it repeatedly, & felt myself soothed, & honoured by the confidence you are pleased to repose in me—though I might never have written, if the late appointment, had not have pressed it upon me as a Duty, owing to a Nephew I sincerely loved, & in whose Prosperity, & Happiness I felt myself highly interested—
If the wishes of your Friends, & the tender Affection of an Aunt, can be any inducement to you, to make us a Visit in Haverhill, you certainly will not leave America without seeing
[signed] Elizabeth Shaw—
Please to excuse the writing as my Eyes are poor, & Abby Adams is round me all the time chattering like a Mag-Pye—
RC (Adams Papers); addressed: “John Quincy Adams Esqr / Boston”; endorsed: “Mrs: E. Shaw. 9. June 1794.”; notation: “To be left at his office, / or at Dr Welsh’s—” Some loss of text where the seal was removed.
1. The Boston Columbian Centinel, 7 June, reported JQA’s appointment.
2. Edward Young, The Complaint; or, Night Thoughts, Night V, lines 142–143.
3. William Pitt the elder, in a speech at the House of Commons on 14 Jan. 1766, said, “Confidence is a plant of slow growth in an aged bosom: youth is the season of credulity” (DNB).
4. Milton, Paradise Lost, Book II, line 2.
5. “The bloom of op’ning flow’rs, unsullied beauty, / Softest and sweetest innocence she wears, / And looks like nature in the world’s first spring” (Nicholas Rowe, Tamerlane, Act I, scene i, lines 72–74).
6. James Thomson, “Spring,” lines 1113–1115.
7. Not found.

Docno: ADMS-04-10-02-0129

Author: Adams, Thomas Boylston
Recipient: Adams, Abigail
Date: 1794-06-14

Thomas Boylston Adams to Abigail Adams

[salute] My dear Mother

It is a fortnight to day since my return to the City, & I have been waiting the arrival of every Post in hopes of hearing from my friends— I missed seeing my Father by one day only, & I have not yet heared of his safe arrival at home. It is probable you are busy in preparing my Brother for his departure— I hope however he will be called to Philadelphia before that takes place— I know not whether it be necessary that he should come here, but at least I wish it. It seems as if our family were destined to distant separations; it is within three Days of Six Years since your return from Europe, which I believe is the longest period for many years that the whole of our Family have sojourned in the same Land. Like the Patriarchal { 205 } families of old, we have wandered thro’ strange & foreign regions, not in search of “the Promised Land,” but for promised honors & expected benefit. I too have travelled. In the course of five weeks I visited the rich & fertile Counties of Pennsylvania. Wealth, Health, & consequent contentment, were the Guests of every village— Vegetation of spontaneous growth every where charmed the Eye, while the product & reward of Laborious industry afforded a gratification as pleasing to the Spectator, as it is profitable to the owner. I passed a week in each County where the Court was held, & it would be difficult for me to decide, which claims the prefference in my opinion. West Chester, York Town, Lancaster, Carlisle & Reading, were the five I visited; I also passed thro’ Harrisburg on my return. This last is situated directly upon the Fertile Banks of the Susquehannah; in point of local situation it has the advantage over all the others; but within two or three years past, it has been subject to Ague’s & Intermittant’s; particularly last Fall— it lost more inhabitants in proportion to its numbers, than the City of Philada:; but for this circumstance the growth of this town would be as rapid as it has been hitherto; there are now 2 or 300 houses, & 8 years ago, there was but one & that was the Ferry house. The water, through out the Country I visited is said to partake the qualities of the Limestone, & I found it peculiarly serviceable to my health; The exercise of riding on Horseback so long a Journey was rather more severe than I have been accustomed to, but tho’ it took away some of my flesh, it contributed much to my health. If it were not for the expence of keeping a Horse in the City, I should be fond of retaining mine till Fall— I could not have been suited better for my purpose any where— The only objection is that it is a female, which among Beasts of burthen & service is not much of a recommendation. But I am in debt for my Bard between fifty & sixty Dollars, & for other things a few more, & I must endeavor to make so good a bargain of my Beast, as to pay my last quarter’s expences.—
I have the promise of an Office in my neighborhood & hope to be in it shortly, I could have got one before at a distance from my lodgings, but the convenience of having it near me, induced my delay.—1 If I can make my Office support itself for the first year, it will be as much as I expect, tho by no means so much as I could desire—but we must all be humbled before we are exalted— I never was much in love with myself, & I feel less so [no]w than ever.
With the warmest affection / yours &ca:
[signed] Thomas B Adams
{ 206 }
P S, Be good enough to inform me if Newcomb’s money arrived safe—
RC (Adams Papers); addressed: “Mrs: Abigail Adams / Quincy / near / Boston”; internal address: “Mrs: A Adams.”; endorsed: “T B Adams / June 14 1794.” Some loss of text where the seal was removed.
1. JQA noted in his Diary that TBA lived at 72 North Third Street (D/JQA/22, 10 July, APM Reel 25).

Docno: ADMS-04-10-02-0130

Author: Adams, Abigail
Recipient: Washington, Martha
Date: 1794-06-20

Abigail Adams to Martha Washington

[salute] my dear Madam

I cannot omit so good an opportunity as the present by my son of paying my respects to you,2 and of acknowledging the honor done him by the unsolicited appointment conferd upon him by the President at a very early period of Life I devoted him to the publick, and in the most dangerous and hazardous time of the War consented that he should accompany his Father in his embassys abroad, considering it of the utmost importance that he should receive his early Education & Principals under his immediate Eye, and I have the satisfaction to say to you Madam, perhaps with the fond Partiality of a Parent, that I do not know in any one Instanc of his <Life> conduct either at home or abroad, he has given me any occasion of regreet, and I hope from his Prudence honour integrity & fidelity that he will never discredit the Character so honorably conferd upon him. painfull as the circumstance of a Seperation from him will be to me Madam I derive a satisfaction from the hope of his becomeing eminently usefull to his Country whether destined to publick, or to Private Life
Be pleased to present my most affectionate Respects to the President and my Love to master Washington & Miss Custus from Madam Your obliged Friend / and Humble Servant
[signed] A Adams
Dft (Adams Papers); notation: “Mrs Washington—” Filmed at [June-July 1794].
1. The dating of this letter is based on Martha Washington’s reply to AA of 19 July, below.
2. AA began another version of this letter on the back of the same sheet of paper. The first draft was identical to this point, after which she continued, “and of introducing him to you in the very honorable Character with which it has pleased the President to invest him, and which I trust will be his Study to fullfill the duties of with that circumspection integrity and fidelity which all publick Trusts demand.” She then abandoned this attempt, flipped the paper over, and started again.

Docno: ADMS-04-10-02-0131

Author: Adams, John Quincy
Recipient: Adams, Abigail
Date: 1794-07-08

John Quincy Adams to Abigail Adams

[salute] My dear Madam

The stage in which I had engaged a passage for Philadelphia this morning, has gone away by mistake, and left me behind, which gives me leisure to write a line by my brother. He intends to pay you a visit this summer, and will be the bearer of this.
I was detained three days in Newport for a wind, but otherwise have had a very comfortable passage from Boston hither— I find my health better than when I saw you, and hope that the heats of Philadelphia, will not prove injurious to it. I shall make as short a stay there as possible.
I have met here with Messrs: Talleyrand and Beaumiez, who are about to proceed eastward, and will in the course of a fortnight or three weeks pay you a visit. I have likewise seen a Mr: Colomb, an aid to Mr De la Fayette; who went to Europe in 1779 with us on board the Sensible.1 “tempora mutantur et nos mutamur in illis.”2 Mr: Colomb and I sat and conversed very sociably together for half an hour before either of us discovered that we had been formerly acquainted, and fellow passengers.
If you do not understand my Latin quotation, I must plead the example of the most respectable authority as a precedent to excuse my inserting it.
Mrs Smith and the family are well, but her children were in the Country, and I was disappointed in not seeing them.— At three this afternoon I start for Philadelphia, from which place, I hope you will shortly hear from me.
In all duty and affection, I remain your Son.
[signed] John Q. Adams.
RC (Adams Papers); addressed: “Mrs: A. Adams. / Quincy.”; endorsed: “July 8th / J Q A / 1794”; notation: “Mr: C. Adams.”
1. Louis Saint Ange Morel, Chevalier de La Colombe (1755 – ca. 1800), served as the Marquis de Lafayette’s aide-de-camp during the Revolutionary War. He again served Lafayette in the French Army in the early 1790s but was arrested during the French Revolution. He escaped and in 1794 immigrated to the United States, where he remained for the rest of his life (Washington, Papers, Presidential Series, 4:573).
For an extended description of this dinner meeting, at the home of AA2 and WSS, see JQA’s Diary for 7 July (D/JQA/20, APM Reel 23).
2. The times change and we change with them.

Docno: ADMS-04-10-02-0132

Author: Adams, John Quincy
Recipient: Adams, John
Date: 1794-07-10

John Quincy Adams to John Adams

[salute] Dear Sir.

I arrived here last Evening, and this morning paid my Respects to the Secretary of State, who introduced me to the President.— I find that it is their wish that I should be as expeditious in my departure as possible. I told the Secretary, that the state of my own affairs would render my return to Boston previous to my departure, extremely eligible to [my]self. He enquired whether it would be indispensable. I replied that in my present situation, I could view nothing as indispensable, that could relate to my own affairs; and if the public service required it, I should be prepared to go from hence or from New-York.— He has allotted me about ten days, to spend in his office in obtaining the necessary information, and I expect it will be required of me to proceed immediately after from hence or from New-York. Of this however I am not yet certain.— I shall write again as soon as I shall have any foundation for certainty upon the subject.
If you wish to send the papers which you mentioned to me before I left Boston, it will perhaps be necessary to forward them as soon as possible. If I do not return to Boston, I suppose I shall sail in less than three weeks from this day.—
The President received a hurt at Mount-Vernon, and is this day somewhat unwell.1 I saw Mrs: Washington, and delivered to her my mother’s Letter.2 They were both very particular in their enquiries respecting her health and your’s.
Thomas is well— I have as yet paid none of my visits but those I have mentioned; and the prospect of being obliged to go so soon must quicken my pace, and now brings me to that conclusion which whether in haste or at leisure I must uniformly make, that I am in all duty and affection your Son
[signed] John Q. Adams.
RC (Adams Papers); addressed: “The Vice-President of the United States / Quincy / Massachusetts.”; endorsed: “J. Q. Adams / July 10. ansd 20. 1794”; docketed: “Philadelphia.” Some loss of text where the seal was removed.
1. Traveling from Washington, D.C., to Mount Vernon in late June, George Washington stopped to visit the falls of the Potomac River. There, as he wrote to Henry Knox on 25 June, “my horse, whose feet had got very tender from the journey, blundered and continued blundering until by violent exertions on my part, to save him and myself from falling among the Rocks, I got such a wrench in my back, as to prevent me from mounting a horse without pain” (Washington, Writings, ed. Fitzpatrick, 33:411).
2. AA to Martha Washington, [20 June], above.

Docno: ADMS-04-10-02-0133

Author: Adams, John Quincy
Recipient: Adams, Abigail
Date: 1794-07-12

John Quincy Adams to Abigail Adams

[salute] Dear Madam

I am yet uncertain as to the next point of my departure. But as I do not hear of any opportunity to go from hence, it is probable I may be permitted to return to Boston. I am glad that the man who has partly engaged to go with me, has already been to take, the small pox, as he will probably be ready upon my return and I shall be obliged to go by the very first opportunity.1
I have begun upon my course of reading in the Office of the Secretary of State, who thinks it will furnish me employment for about ten days; I shall then either go from hence or immediately return to Boston.
Thomas has concluded to remain here, and I believe it will be as advantageous to his interest as it would be were he to take my Office in Boston.2
Piomingo, and a number of Chickasaw chiefs and warriors are here, and have had an Audience of the President, at which I was present, and assisted in smoking the pipe with them.3
My health has been improved by my Journey, and I find myself much recruited.
Affectionately your’s
[signed] J.Q. Adams.
I find there is no allowance made me for a secretary.— But I should be very much gratified to have my brother Thomas go with me; I wish it could be made agreeable to my father.— The expences of travelling and of his board and lodging there, I would defray with pleasure: and if my father would make him the same allowance which he does at present, I think Tom would be glad to go with me, and spend nine or twelve months in Europe.— I think it could not possibly be a material injury to his prospects. he certainly never will have an opportunity when he can spare a year of his time with so little inconvenience and very possibly, he might while in Holland meet with some chance of pursuing a profitable business for himself, in a line at least as well suited to his genius & inclination as his present profession.— The plan would be very agreeable to him, but he is reluctant at making the proposal.
Will you be so kind as to mention it to my father, and let me have an answer by the very first post. If the thing should meet with his consent there will not be a moments time to spare—
[signed] J. Q. A.
{ 210 }
RC (Adams Papers); addressed: “Mrs: A. Adams / Quincy.”; endorsed: “J. Q. Adams / July 12. ansd. 20. 1794”; docketed: “Philadelphia / to his Mother.”
1. Tilly Whitcomb (ca. 1768–1824) of Boston served JQA and TBA as a manservant in Europe until JQA’s return to Boston in 1801. Whitcomb later was the proprietor of the Boston Concert Hall and the Neponset Bridge Hotel (D/JQA/30, 22 Sept. 1818, APM Reel 33; Boston Columbian Centinel, 17 April 1824).
2. For JQA’s offering his law office in Boston to TBA, see TBA to JA, 14 July 1794, below. TBA ultimately decided to accompany JQA to Europe as his secretary; see JQA to JA, 18 July, below.
3. Piomingo (ca. 1750 – ca. 1798), also known as Mountain Leader, was one of the heads of the Chickasaw nation. Allies of Gen. Anthony Wayne, Piomingo and several other Chickasaw traveled to Philadelphia in late spring to confirm their friendship with the United States. George Washington met with them on 11 July and in subsequent days signed a formal agreement (though not a treaty) granting the Chickasaw protection over their land and forbidding U.S. purchase of or settlement on it (James R. Atkinson, Splendid Land, Splendid People: The Chickasaw Indians to Removal, Tuscaloosa, Ala., 2004, p. 125–126, 163–166, 179). For JQA’s lengthy description of this meeting in his Diary, see D/JQA/20, 11 July, APM Reel 23.

Docno: ADMS-04-10-02-0134

Author: Adams, Thomas Boylston
Recipient: Adams, John
Date: 1794-07-14

Thomas Boylston Adams to John Adams

Your kind Letter by my Brother was delivered a few days since;1 as the proposal it contains is of very considerable importance, I have taken time to consider it before I returned an answer. As you have been good enough to leave it in my option whether to adopt the plan, or not, I shall express my sentiments with the freedom which your indulgence seems to authorize. I am sensible that a young man, just commencing his career in the line of a Profession, should have no local attachments but such as are founded on the superior advantages, immediate or remote, which one spot may claim over another; Nor should favorable prepossessions be indulged, farther than they are subservient to his interest. My prospects in the Profession as yet, are not of that flattering nature, which would induce me to forego an offer of greater advantage in another place; but from mature deliberation on the idea of removal to the Office of my Brother in Boston, and consultation with him on the subject, I am induced to believe, that my continuance here will be most favorable to my interest. I have occupied an Office nearly opposite my Lodgings, for three weeks past; for which I am to pay at the rate of Seventeen Pounds pr Ann; I have the use of a Library belonging to a young man, who was my predecessor, and who gave up the Office for my accomodation, sooner than he otherwise would have done, and entrusted me with the management of several causes yet unsettled on his Dockett. These are the inducements which opperate on my mind for remaining in Philadelphia, and tho they are in some { 211 } measure circumstances of a casual nature, the least I can do is to think them fortunate. I have felt more satisfaction in the three weeks attendance on my Office, than for Six months past; & tho my consequence hitherto has depended on my own opinion, at least I have enjoyed some satisfaction in the anticipation of its further extension. In making this choice, I renounce the satisfaction which a nearer residence to my Parents would afford—but so long as the Office you hold requires your attendance at this place for some months in the year, I shall enjoy the pleasure & benefit of your company. Here I have already made a begining in the Profession—in Boston I am unknown— Here I have qualifyed myself in some degree for the Practice in this state—In Massachusetts I should have to learn the first rudiments— But droping the parralell I will close with observing, that at all times I shall pay obedience to the commands of my Parents, tho’ in a matter of option I may give my reasons without reserve for not closing with their proposals.
With much affection / your Son
[signed] Thomas B Adams.
1. Not found.

Docno: ADMS-04-10-02-0135

Author: Adams, John Quincy
Recipient: Adams, John
Date: 1794-07-18

John Quincy Adams to John Adams

[salute] Dear Sir

Since my arrival here, I have employed all the Time, that I have been able to spare, from the more important business of visits and dinners, in the Office of the Secretary of State, and have gone through six large folio volumes containing your dispatches to Congress while you were in Europe.1 They can have but little relation to the business upon which I am about to proceed; but they have proved such a fund of information and of entertainment to me as I have seldom met with in the course of my life.
So long as these books exist, they will be the highest euloguim that can be past upon your conduct in Europe; but whenever they shall be made public, they will make breaches of a very serious Nature in the artificial reputation of some other Diplomatic characters. The contemptuous insolence of V. towards you, and his base malignity as well as his fear of you, and his perfidy to this Country, will at some future period appear in the full face of Day, as well as the miserable dupery, if it was not something worse, of “papa F.”2
I have not read his dispatches during the same period. Indeed the { 212 } Secretary of State seems so desirous to have me gone and I have so little time to spare for the satisfaction of my private curiosity, that I fear I shall not get a sight of them. I am even a little scrupulous about asking for them, as I presume Mr: Randolph would suspect, that information as to the subject of my own mission would not be my only inducement.
But from the disclosure of the policy pursued by France during our Revolution, which has lately been made by the ruling powers there, I think it is infallible that a comparative view of the french ministerial Letters and instructions of that day, together with your dispatches, and those of the patriarchal philosopher & Statesman, would exhibit a group of characters as elegantly and sublimely contrasted, as ever proceeded from the pencil of Raphael or of Rubens.— What a conflict of passions would be discernible in the countenance of the Frenchman!— An affected superciliousness to you; an obsequiousness equally affected, to your colleague, a real respect and fear in the first case, and a real contempt for the tool of his adulation in the second piercing through the deep disguise of the sentiments assumed; a pretended regard and a real malevolence towards the country which you represented; all this clearly detected, and exposed by you, while your co-patriot in his total blindness, and his small envy, cordially assists the pretended friend in carrying on the imposture.— it would be a morçeau exquis pour les amateurs.3
Little did that minister of falsehood imagine, that all the secrets of the cabinet with all his dissimulation and all his intrigue would so speedily be made accessible to the public.— In one of Mr: Short’s Letters of a recent date he says that a short Time before he left Paris he was admitted to an inspection of the records in the french Office for foreign affairs.— It was at his request, and for the purpose of obtaining a sight of certain documents relative to Mr: Jay’s negotiation with Spain.4 The minister gave him the necessary order, in consequence of the principle which he had professed of abolishing all diplomatic mystery. And yet Short then got sight of some Letter from V. to Rayneval, which he thinks it would be a breach of confidence in him to disclose, presuming that it could not have been intended he should see it. Mr: Short’s delicacy is certainly very commendable; but I infer from this anecdote two things; the first is that the office of foreign affairs in France and the same Office here are two electrical clouds which whenever they shall meet, will prove to be rather too highly charged, for Mr: Franklin’s conductor to carry off. the other is, that the french minister who pretended to banish { 213 } all diplomatic mystery from his administration, was as ill qualified as Franklin himself to snatch the thunderbolt from the sky or the scepter from the hand of Tyrants.5 His indiscretion certainly put into Short’s possession information which was not intended for him, and therefore his display of openness and publicity must be very imprudent or very hypocritical. The ars celare artem6 is as much the ambition of the present french negotiations as it was under their former government; but I think they are still less successful in the attempt.
I was mistaken when I informed you that there was no allowance made for a Secretary to Ministers of the Rank which has been conferred upon me. A private Secretary is allowed, and I have made an offer of the place to my brother Thomas which Mr: Randolph says will be perfectly agreeable.— my brother hesitated for some time, from a reluctance to decide upon a measure so important to himself without previously consulting you and obtaining your approbation. But as the time cannot admit of this, he has concluded to take it by anticipation, and if he should find himself disappointed in his hopes that this step will be agreeable to you, he will make his stay in Europe the shorter. The allowance is 1350 Dollars. He does not consider this as offering any thing permanent to him, or as giving him an opportunity to make money, but as a decent support for a short period of Time, an opportunity of seeing part of Europe, and perhaps of making some improvements which would not be so easily attainable at home
I expect to leave this City by the latter end of this week or the beginning of the next for Boston, and am to sail from thence by the very first opportunity for London; this passage is expressly preferred by the President & Secretary of State, and as it fully coincides with my own opinion and inclination it has been positively determined rather than a passage immediately to Amsterdam. If it should happen that an earlier opportunity should occur from New-York, than from Boston, I shall come back again and sail from thence for at present the object of my greatest anxiety is to reach the place of my residence.7
I have not yet received my Instructions and therefore am not informed what is the object of my mission. As soon as this shall take place, I shall either write to you, or else take the opportunity when I see you at Quincy to make the observations which have occurred to { 214 } myself and to request your advice and opinion, with respect to the PRINCIPLE upon which I ought to calculate the duration of my residence in Europe. Some principle I must determine upon before I go; for my commission is during the Pleasure of the President. It is a tenancy at will, and therefore it is proper that I should settle beforehand, the contingencies upon which my will shall determine, upon the supposition that the President should not make such determination on my part unnecessary.— I wish to serve my Country; but not to feed upon her for nothing.
Affectionately your Son
[signed] John Q. Adams.
RC (Adams Papers); endorsed: “J. Q. Adams. July 16 & 20th. / 1794”; docketed: “Philadelphia.” LbC (Adams Papers); APM Reel 126.
1. For these volumes, see PCC, No. 84, I-VI.
2. That is, the Comte de Vergennes and Benjamin Franklin, both of whom JA tangled with during his diplomatic service in Europe. See JA, Papers, vols. 6–15 passim.
3. A delightful bit for the amateurs.
4. John Jay was involved in various diplomatic negotiations with Spain, first between 1779 and 1782 as U.S. minister to Spain, and again between 1784 and 1789 as secretary for foreign affairs. Both missions—the first, to achieve Spanish recognition of the United States, and the second, to negotiate a commercial treaty between the two countries— failed (DAB).
5. A phrase attributed to Anne Robert Jacques Turgot; see JA, Papers, 6:174.
6. Usually “Ars est celare artem,” that is, It is true art to conceal art.
7. On 12 July, JQA wrote to Thomas Welsh in Boston asking him to look for ships sailing from either Boston or New York to London or Amsterdam (MHi:Adams-Welsh Coll.), but JQA and TBA did not locate a passage until early September. Ultimately, they sailed from Boston on 17 Sept. aboard the Alfred, Capt. Stephen Macey. They reached England on 14 Oct. (D/JQA/21, 14 Oct., APM Reel 24; D/JQA/22, 1, 9, 17 Sept., APM Reel 25; Boston Columbian Centinel, 30 Aug.).

Docno: ADMS-04-10-02-0136

Author: Washington, Martha
Recipient: Adams, Abigail
Date: 1794-07-19

Martha Washington to Abigail Adams

[salute] My Dear Madam—

Mr Adams (your son) presented me with your obliging favor of June the 20th. and I pray you to accept my thanks for your kind remembrance of me; and the assurance of the pleasure I felt at hearing that you had quite recovered your health again.—
That parental feelings should be put to the test at a seperation (perhaps for years) from a dutyful, and meritorious son, is not to be wondered at; but as there is no trial bereft of consolation, so in the one before you, you have a flattering vẽw of his future welfare.— The prudence, good sence and high estamation in which he stands, leaves you nothing to apprehend on his account from the want of these traits in his character;—whilst abilities, exerted in the road in which he is now placed, affords him the fairest prospect rendering { 215 } eminent services to his country; and of being, in time, among the fore most in her councils.— This I know is the opinion of my Husband, from whom I have imbided the idea.—
he begs me to present his best wishes and respectful compliments to you, and joins me in sincear regards for the Vice-President
With very great esteem I remain / Dear Madam your / affectionat Servant
[signed] M Washington
Nelly and Washington write with me in good wishes for miss Smith

Docno: ADMS-04-10-02-0137

Author: Adams, Abigail
Recipient: Adams, John Quincy
Date: 1794-07-20

Abigail Adams to John Quincy Adams

[salute] my dear Son

I received your Letter this morning of the 12th and one from N york by your Brother Charles,1 who got here the day before commencment; in good Health & spirits. your Father and Brother, myself and Louissa all went together to commencment. the weather was uncomfortably Hot. it was otherways an agreeable day. I hope you will not experience any unusual inconvenience from the Heat of Philadelphia. your stay there will not be longer than you are obliged to. I cannot think of your going abroad without returning here. Your Father will write to you respecting your Proposal for Thomas—2 you knew my mind upon the Subject before you left me. provided you had an allowence for a secretary, I have always wisht that your Brother might have an opportunity of going abroad for a short period of Time, and as you are inclined to have him accompany you, I think it is not probably that a better opportunity will ever present itself, for him, as you may be mutually benificial to each other, and it will not be so Solitary to you. I will not take my own personal feelings into the question. What ever may be for the benifit of my children I acquiese in.
Tilly went as I wrote you to get innoculated but as no other person presented they thought it would not do to take one person only. he is however determind to go with you & risk it.
Let me hear from you by <every> the post I think you will be like to get a passage from hence as readily as from N york or Philadelphia. I have a request to make you and Your Brother. if there is a minature painter in the city Set for your Liknesses large enough for { 216 } { 217 } { 218 } Braslets & if You get them give them to mr Anthony to set with a lock of each of your Hairs to be put on the back together with Your Names in a cypher and whatever the expence may be I will repay you here.3 the Likeness may be taken and the pictures left with mr Anthony as it will take him some time to set them. you must Spair Time for it if possible—
Yours affectionatly
[signed] A Adams
1. JQA to AA, 8 July, above.
2. JA wrote to JQA on 20 July fully supporting the plan for TBA to accompany JQA to Europe (Adams Papers).
3. Joseph Anthony Jr. was a Philadelphia jeweler and goldsmith (Philadelphia Directory, 1794, Evans, No. 27089). JQA and TBA eventually had the miniatures painted by a British artist in the Netherlands; see Descriptive List of Illustrations, Nos. 4 and 5, above.

Docno: ADMS-04-10-02-0138

Author: Adams, John Quincy
Recipient: Adams, John
Date: 1794-07-27

John Quincy Adams to John Adams

[salute] Dear Sir.

I expected to have been on my way to Boston before this; but Mr: Hamilton is gone into the Country, and I cannot be supplied with my instructions untill he returns. He has been expected every hour these four days, and it is very possible that four days hence he may still be hourly expected. In the mean while I am here lolling away my time, and sweating away my person, with nothing to do, and waiting with as much patience, as I have at command.— I am unable to say therefore when I shall leave this place, but hope it will be by the middle of this week.
But I presume that my instructions after all will contain nothing very particular. The Secretary of State says that the mission is almost exclusively reduced to a pecuniary negotiation.1
To have nothing further to do, but to borrow money, and superintend the loans already existing, is an employment, to which for a certain Time I have no reluctance in submitting. It is a situation in which my services may be of some small utility to my Country, and which may afford me a valuable opportunity to improve my own information and talents: but I cannot think of it with any satisfaction as a permanency whether I consider it with reference to the public or to myself.
As it respects the public it is a situation of small trust and confidence under the present circumstances. The credit of the United States stands upon such ground, that very little or none of their future success or failure will depend upon the personal character or { 219 } abilities of their Representative there. And I presume the Executive Government of this country will not think it necessary to keep a minister constantly resident at the Hague, for the sole purpose of occasionally borrowing a sum of money for the public at Amsterdam.
Should that however be the policy of the Government, and should it be at my option to continue from year to year in this state of nominal respectability and real insignificance, it is proper for me to determine how long I shall bear it: and this is a subject of much reflection and much anxiety to my mind.
I have abandoned the profession upon which I have hitherto depended, for a future subsistence; Abandoned it, at a time, when the tedious noviciate of hope and fear was nearly past; when flattering and brightening prospects were every day opening more and more extensively to my view; when I was at least upon a footing of equal advantage with any one of my own standing in the profession, and advancing if not rapidly at least with regular progression towards eminence: when the reward of long and painful expectation began to unfold itself to my sight, and give me a rational hope of future possession. At this critical moment, when all the materials for a valuable reputation at the bar were collected, and had just began to operate favourably for me, I have stopped short in my career; forsaken the path which would have led me to independence and security in private life; and stepped into a totally different direction.
To that profession I can never return without losing many of the advantages, which rendered its practice tolerable. The reputation which hitherto I had acquired was still very much confined and limited; it was founded upon four years of constant application and attention to business. My absence will not only stop its growth, but will carry me back to that obscurity in which I began. The study of the common and Statute Law has nothing attractive to secure any attention to it unless some inducement of immediate interest serves as a stimulus. My business, and my studies in the character which I am now to assume, have very little affinity with those of a practicing lawyer; I shall probably have but little leisure, and shall not be disposed to devote it to Kings-Bench or Chancery Reports, to Littleton’s Tenures or Coke’s Commentaries. Yet these studies must essentially be uninterrrupted to preserve the learning of a lawyer, and two or three years intermission will have the double effect of disgusting me with them, and of disqualifying me from the practice of the Law, without a redoubled application to them.
{ 220 }
In proportion as my own professional advancement will be checked that of my contemporaries and particularly of those who started from the goal nearly at the same time with myself, will be promoted. They will continue to make their way, and will in a few years have reached the summit of reputation and of business.— My juniors who are now just opening their Offices, or are yet students will then have reached the station from which I have departed, and thus after having been elevated to a public station much beyond my own wishes and expectations, and invested with a character more conspicuous than those of my fellow citizens of equal years and standing in the world, in returning to the bar I shall descend as much below the level of my ambition and pretensions as I have been by my present appointment raised above it.
The profession therefore can be considered by me in no other light, than that of a last resort, in case all other resources should fail; and yet I have no reason to suppose, that any thing more eligible will occur to me in case I should at the end of two or three years be destitute of public employment.
Unpleasant however as this perspective is, I think it infinitely preferable to that of remaining in the public service, to perform duties which may be executed equally well by any other man; and with the consciousness of holding a public office without confidence, without utility, and for no other purpose than barely to give me a subsistence
The idea of being many years absent from my Country; from my family my connections and friends is so painful that I feel a necessity for fixing upon some period to which I may look forward with an expectation of being restored to them. The distance between the two Countries is so great and the communication of course so small, that it is hardly possible for an American to be long in Europe, without losing in some measure his national character. The habits, the manners and affections insensibly undergo an alteration; the common changes to which Society is incident remove many of the friends and connections which he left behind him, and no others are substituted in their stead; his own propensities are so liable to follow the course of the stream into which he has been launched, that he gradually takes an European disposition, becomes a stranger to his own Country, and when at length he returns finds himself an alien in the midst of his own fellow-citizens.
The attachment which I feel for my native Land, is not merely a sentiment of the Heart; it is also a principle dictated by my Reason. { 221 } Independant of my feelings and Inclinations, I hold it to be a duty of the most rigid obligation, to make the place of my birth, the centre of all my wishes and the chief object of all my pursuits. Wherever my lot may be cast; I hope I shall always turn towards it with as much frequency of devotion and as constant veneration as that with which the most faithful disciple of Mahomet presents his face towards the tomb of his prophet. I cannot therefore look forward with indifference to any situation that shall have a tendency to loosen the ties which connect me with my Country. I cannot anticipate without concern a length of absence, which may give my inclinations a bias different from that of my duty.
For these Reasons I am convinced of the propriety there is in marking out for my own determination the limits of Time for the duration of my present mission. It is very possible that I may have no occasion for any such limitation, and that my commission will be superseded by the will of the President, as soon or sooner than I shall desire; but this is an Event which is wholly out of my controul and which therefore cannot enter into my calculations.
If after three years residence at the Hague, I should see no particular object requiring my further continuance there; if the business of an American Minister there should continue to be the mere agency of a broker, and my office be of no benefit but to me, I shall feel myself under an obligation to return home; and resume my profession or any other employment in private life, that shall afford me an honourable support.
I have written very freely to you Sir upon this subject, because I wish to have the sanction of your opinion and your advice. The principle which I have adopted has been so consonant to your own practice, and has been in my mind so clearly the result of your instructions, that I think it cannot but meet with your approbation.— Perhaps the Time upon which I have fixed may not preserve so accurately the medium as I should wish, and if you are of that opinion, I must solicit you for the result of your reflections, in writing if it be not too inconvenient.— Your kindness will excuse the unceasing egotism of this Letter, which could admit of no apology, were it not directed to the indulgence of a parent for the purpose of obtaining the guidance of paternal wisdom.
Since I wrote you last my brother has received your Letter, and I have the answer to mine consenting to his going with me.2 You have been kind enough to promise him the continuance of your assistance to him, to enable him to bear the expences of his foreign tour; { 222 } but since I made the application to you, I find that an allowance is made for a private Secretary, and my brother is willing to accompany me in that capacity; so that he will have it in his power to unite business and amusement, and may have the advantage of travelling without incumbrance to you.
In ten or twelve days I hope I shall see you at Quincy, and in the mean time remain affectionately your Son.
[signed] J. Q. Adams.
1. Edmund Randolph provided JQA with his instructions on 29 July (Adams Papers). As JQA expected, Randolph wrote that it was JQA’s “first and unremitting duty, to forward by all the means in your power the loan, opened for 800,000 dollars and destined to the ransom of our fellow citizens in Algiers, and the effectuating of a peace.” Besides that and a request to deal with the case of an American ship captured by a Dutch privateer, the rest of the instructions focused on the general duties of a minister—to keep the secretary of state informed of all political and diplomatic activities, to supply information on the history and administration of the Netherlands, and to insure that commercial relations between the Netherlands and the United States remained on a positive footing.
On 8 Aug., Alexander Hamilton followed up with more detailed information on the Dutch loan and provided JQA with copies of the relevant documents. Hamilton noted, “In the future progress of things it is probable that the subject here by committed to you will again become of great importance and delicacy & you will of course take pains to possess yourself of all requisite and useful information” (Hamilton, Papers, 17:72–76; Adams Papers).
2. JA’s letter to TBA has not been found.

Docno: ADMS-04-10-02-0139

Author: Adams, John Quincy
Recipient: Adams, Abigail
Date: 1794-07-29

John Quincy Adams to Abigail Adams

[salute] My dear Madam

I am still waiting for the arrival of Coll: Hamilton whom it is necessary for me to see before my departure, and who has been detained several days in the Country by the sickness of a child.1
I received your favour of the 20th: instt: and my brother is now prepared to go with me.— We should be very happy to comply with your request respecting the bracelets, but we shall certainly not have time for the miniatures to be taken here; and indeed our miniature painters are so indifferent workmen, that it will be best to have them done in Europe.
A very serious opposition to the collection of the Excise has taken place in one of the western Counties of this State. The Collector’s House has been burnt down, and an action between the insurgents and a company of soldiers terminated in the loss of several lives.—2
I enclose with this a pamphlet which has just made its appearance; written as I judge from the face of it by some Englishman, but I know not any Briton in this Country equal to it.
There is much party spirit, much virulence, and some { 223 } controversial disingenuity conspicuous in this publication. It is certainly not written with a view to popular approbation. But I believe the Doctor and his friends would not find it an easy task, really to answer it—3
A french fleet of forty sail which went from hence about a fortnight since has been picked up by an English squadron on the Coast; and a very small portion of them have escaped.— There is some suspicion I believe of treachery among the french, or by the American Pilots who were with them; but I know not exactly what it is.4
On the other hand the combined armies in Europe, have no reason to boast of their success. Their situation is even extremely critical. And the violent measures pursued by the ministry in England, indicate a consciousness of internal weakness more than any thing that has hitherto occurred.
No account of Mr: Jay’s arrival as yet.5
The Secretary of State and Hammond continue bickering and recriminating.— If the latter is not absolutely instructed to pick a quarrel with us at all hazards his conduct is very indiscreet. He is now at New-York.
A pompous Letter from London giving an Account of the present internal state of France has been published in most of the newspapers here, and has probably found its way into those of Boston. It was written by Jackson, the ci-devant Secretary to the President. It contains information really important, but I know not how far it is to be depended upon. There is a circumstance which proves that the author was vain of his Letter at least.— He addressed and sent it to two different persons: Mr: Pinckney in London, and Mr: Willing in this City.— Mr: Pinckney sent a copy of it to the Secretary of State; so that when Mr: Willing received that sent to him, and was anxious to communicate his very interesting intelligence, he was greatly surprized to find that the President was already in possession of it.6
Instead of Salvator-Rosa, methinks this incident would supply a tolerable subject for the pencil of Hogarth.
I write very freely: indeed I find it difficult to realize that henceforth my Correspondence must be armed at all points, or confidential. It will take me some time to ease myself in diplomatic buckram completely. I have no occasion to request of you that my future letters, may be reserved from all but my father’s inspection.— You will easily distinguish those parts of them which are intended only for yourself and him.
I am in all duty and affection your Son
[signed] J. Q. Adams.
{ 224 }
RC (Adams Papers); addressed: “Mrs: A. Adams / Quincy.”; internal address: “Mrs: A. Adams, Quincy.”; endorsed: “JQ Adams july / 29 1794”; docketed: “Philadelphia.” LbC (Adams Papers); APM Reel 126.
1. On 11 July Alexander Hamilton wrote to George Washington asking to be excused from Philadelphia “to make an excursion into the country for a few days to try the effect of exercise & change of air” on his son, John Church Hamilton (b. 1792). Alexander Hamilton had planned to return within a week but was detained at New York and did not arrive back in Philadelphia until 30 July (Hamilton, Papers, 16:591, 615–616, 627).
2. JQA recounts the first violent action of the Whiskey Rebellion. On 16 July a group of armed men attacked John Neville, the regional supervisor for collection of the federal excise in western Pennsylvania, seeking his resignation and his records of tax collection on distilled spirits. A skirmish ensued in which one person was killed. The next day, a much larger mob of several hundred people returned and a second battle followed. Two or three men were killed, others were wounded, and Neville’s estate was burned.
Over the next few months, several thousand Pennsylvanians engaged in a series of actions, some violent, to protest and thwart attempts to collect the excise tax on spirits. Ultimately, George Washington gathered an army of nearly 13,000 from various state militias and personally led them part of the way to put down the insurgency, which was largely accomplished by November. While the army arrested many people as suspects, only a handful were ever tried for treason. All but two were acquitted, and those two Washington eventually pardoned (Slaughter, Whiskey Rebellion, p. 3, 217–221). For more on the Whiskey Rebellion, see Descriptive List of Illustrations, No. 6, above.
3. Possibly An Impartial History of the Late Revolution in France, from Its Commencement to the Death of the Queen, and the Execution of the Deputies of the Gironde Party, 2 vols., Phila., 1794, Evans, No. 27588. A copy is in JA’s library at MB (Catalogue of JA’s Library).
4. On 13 July a French convoy of some thirty ships, mainly merchantmen containing provisions for France, sailed from the Delaware River. The next day they were attacked by British forces. Given the order to disperse, some of the convoy escaped but over half were captured (New York Journal, 16 July; Philadelphia Independent Gazetteer, 19 July; Philadelphia Gazette, 30, 31 July).
5. News of John Jay’s arrival in London had reached New York by 13 Aug. and Philadelphia by 14 Aug., where it was widely reported. The Philadelphia Gazette of that day, for instance, noted, “By the brig Nancy we learn that Mr. JAY had arrived at London, and was well received by the Ministry.”
6. This letter was apparently from William Jackson, Washington’s secretary, to Thomas Willing of Philadelphia, the president of the Bank of the United States (DAB). Dated London, 28 April, it appeared in the Philadelphia Gazette, 16 July. The letter described in glowing terms the “formidable preparations” the French were making for the coming war, including the mustering of troops, gathering of armaments, and preparation of fuel. Jackson also celebrated the agricultural progress of France, noting that “amidst all this din and preparation of arms, the country is more carefully and extensively cultivated than in any former period. … The very avenues and approaches to the Chateaux are ploughed, even walks in the gardens of the Tuilleries are sown and planted, and no country presents a more promising appearance in agriculture than France does at this moment.”

Docno: ADMS-04-10-02-0140

Author: Adams, John Quincy
Recipient: Adams, Thomas Boylston
Date: 1794-08-13

John Quincy Adams to Thomas Boylston Adams

[salute] My dear Brother

Coll: Hamilton arrived in Philadelphia, the night before you left it, but from the pressure of business more immediately urgent, was not prepared for me untill last Friday. On that Evening I left the City, in company with Genl Knox, and arrived here (quite overcome { 225 } { 226 } with fatigue, and somewhat unwell of the complaint which you brought from the same place) on Saturday at about 6 in the Evening.
The Secretary of State supposed he should have some farther commands for me, and requested me to stop here until Friday next, accordingly, I have hitherto been here recruiting my health & strength.
So long as my departure is delayed by the orders of my Superiors, I must submit cheerfully, but I am very anxious that no additional delay of my own should postpone the voyage, beyond the line of absolute necessity. I hope therefore that you will have some Vessel ready to Sail, within a few days after I reach Boston. The best season for the Voyage, we must be content to lose. I shall sail for Providence on friday or Saturday, I hope;1 and in the mean time am affectionately your Brother
LbC in TBA’s hand (Adams Papers); internal address: “Mr: TB Adams. / Quincy”; APM Reel 126.
1. JQA sailed aboard the packet Sally on 16 Aug., arriving in Providence on the 18th and Quincy on the 19th (D/JQA/22, APM Reel 25).

Docno: ADMS-04-10-02-0141

Author: Adams, Thomas Boylston
Recipient: Cranch, William
Date: 1794-08-15

Thomas Boylston Adams to William Cranch

[salute] Dear William

Your last favor was handed me by Mr C Hall on the road between Philadelphia and New York—1 It gave me pleasure to receive it, particularly as it was delivered by a Gentleman for whom I have the highest esteem, and who from the satisfaction that was visible in his countenance, discovered the pleasure he must have received in his visit, and the still greater gratification of your acquaintance. I have so far proceeded in my arrangements for leaving the Country as to have arrived safely in this place, and am now waiting with no small degree of impatience for an opportunity to Embark— You know the hurry, bustle &c of such a period as the present, and therefore will pardon me in telling you, that present appearances afford me no prospect of paying a visit to my favorite spot in which you have the happiness to reside. It may however be possible, but if not, the consequence must be that you come and pass a few days with me. I shall be happy if it is in my power to save you the trouble, but if your business will admit your absence for a few days, it will { 227 } probably be more convenient, than for me to visit you. My Brother whom I left in Philadelphia, has not yet arrived in Boston, tho’ I expect him by every Post; when he returns I shall be able to inform you whether a week of pleasure can be afforded me or not. As there are no vessels up for London at present, the period of our Embarkation is yet uncertain— We may be detained four or five weeks; and if in that time all matters can be brought to bear, I will run away to you with as much eagerness as ever a hungry boy ran to his breakfast.
Your Family were all well yesterday; Present me affectionately to all your friends at Haverhill and receive for your individual self the best wishes of
[signed] Thomas B Adams
RC (OCHP:William Cranch Papers, Mss fC891c RM); addressed: “William Cranch Esqr: / Atty at Law / Haverhill”; internal address: “William Cranch Esqr:”; endorsed: “T.B. A. Aug: 15. 1794 / Ansd. 23d” and “Ansd. Aug. 23d.”
1. Not found. Charles Hall (ca. 1769–1821) was a lawyer who settled in Sunbury, Penn. (New York Evening Post, 16 Jan. 1821).

Docno: ADMS-04-10-02-0142

Author: Adams, John
Recipient: Adams, John Quincy
Date: 1794-08-24

John Adams to John Quincy Adams

[salute] My dear Son

In its due time, I received your Letter from Philadelphia of the 27. of July.
Although, in the Opinion of The Secretary of State, the Mission to Holland may be “almost exclusively reduced to a pecuniary Negotiation,” yet, in the Opinion of others among whom your father is one, the Post at the Hague is an important Diplomatick Station, which may afford many opportunities of acquiring political Information and of penetrating the Designs of many Cabinets in Europe.
The Observations and Reflections contained in your Letter are all very Sensible, and I wish you to remember and preserve them: but, in Case you should return to your Country whether in three Years or Seven or more or less, I wish you to preserve your Resolution inflexible to return to the Bar. Be patient. Submit to the Mortifications you justly foresee Open your Office and be always found in it, except when you are attending the Courts of Justice. from none of these Should you be absent, a moment.
In three or four years you will probably be promoted to the Rank of a Min. Plenipotentiary: possibly in less time, if you discover to The President Talents and Principles Suitable for So high a Trust.
{ 228 }
As every Thing is uncertain and Scænes are constantly changing I would not advise you to fix any unalterable Resolutions except in favour of Virtue and integrity and an unchangeable Love to your Country. Your own good Sense will be Sufficient to guide you from time to time.
Endeavour to obtain Correspondences with able Men in the southern & middle States as well as in the northern ones, and these will inform you & advise you.
If my Life should be Spared I hope to be one of them and will give you my best Opinions and Advice as Circumstances occur. I wish you a pleasant Voyage and much honour Satisfaction and Success in your Mission—
I am with constant Affection / your Friend and Father
[signed] John Adams
RC (Adams Papers); internal address: “John Quincy Adams Minister / of U.S. to the Hague.” Tr (Adams Papers).

Docno: ADMS-04-10-02-0143

Author: Shaw, Elizabeth Smith
Recipient: Adams, Abigail
Date: 1794-09-10

Elizabeth Smith Shaw to Abigail Adams

[salute] My Dear Sister—

My Cousins most agreeably supprized me by a Visit— I had been informed that your Sons were to sail the week before— I thought they were upon the wide Ocean, & many a fervent wish for their saefty T had breathed forth— I am sorry I could not have the pleasure of seeing my other Nephews, especially your eldest Son, as perhaps, it will be many a year before I see him, if ever— It is an unstable world we live in— And we Sisters seem to be called, to be separated from some of our dearest Connections all at once— For I must think, I shall feel the Separation from Mr Cranch, even more than his own Father, & Mother— For I had considered him as fixed among us—as a dear Relative, & worthy Friend, as a Protector to me, & my Children, one whom I hoped to have lived, & died with—but Providence seems to be pointing out to him another Place—a Sphere of more extensive usefulness, I trust, & ought I to murmur, or to repine.—1 He that cuts of one branch, can cause another to shoot forth—& if it is best, it will be done— Reliance upon the wisdom, & goodness of the divine Being, has the most salutary effect— We derive from it, our sweetest Comforts, & it gives peace, & serenity to the mind when nothing else can—
Cousin Betsy is much better, riding she finds of service, I hope { 229 } she will be able to make you a visit at Quincy when my Cousin Lucy returns—
The bag the oatmeal was in, I should be obliged to you, if you would send it— It is a nice one for my William to pack his Cloaths in— I mean to do his washing— more cloaths is necessary, but I can do it, better than hire—2 what you was so kind as to give me I found of great service, they were much better than we could afford to buy— turning the hind part before, & making them over again, made quite useful small cloaths—
Adieu my dear Sister—may you, & Yours be protected from every kind of danger, & evil—
[signed] Elizabeth Shaw—
1. William Cranch had accepted a position as agent to James Greenleaf’s firm, Morris, Nicholson & Greenleaf, in Washington, D.C. He was retained to handle their legal and business affairs, work he continued until the firm’s failure in 1797 (NEHGS, Memorial Biographies, 2:451–454).
2. William Smith Shaw was beginning his first term at Harvard; he would graduate in 1798 (Harvard Quinquennial Cat.).

Docno: ADMS-04-10-02-0144

Author: Adams, John
Recipient: Adams, Charles
Date: 1794-09-11

John Adams to Charles Adams

[salute] My dear Charles

Last night I received your kind Letter of Septr. 3d and am sorry to find that your Books were not then arrived.1 Before this day I hope they are in your Office, and I should be glad if you would inform me whether they are or not. The early Part of my Life was Spent among them, and they have never been many Days together out of my thoughts; so that I have contracted an habitual Affection for them, which would be more mortified by the Loss of them, than of their Value in any other Property.
Your Brothers are to Sail on Sunday, the 14th. of this Month, and my Heaven vouch Safe them a prosperous Passage and Successful Mission.
As it is many Years Since I have lost all my former esteem for Mr Paines Character both as a Man and a Politician, his last Publication and the consequent Declension of his Character among virtuous Men, has been no Surprize to me. It is a Pity that his ridiculous “Age of Reason”: had not appeared before his ranting “Rights of Man,[”] that the poison concealed in it, might have been Suspected from the hateful Character of the Physician who prescribed it.2
Rienzi, Massianello, Wat Tyler and other Heroes of democratical Memory, were better Men and not worse Statesmen.3 Cleon and { 230 } Clodius and all their Successors, among the popular Destroyers of Republicanism, ought to teach Mankind caution.4 But Frederick is right. The Sotteses des Peres sont perdues pour leurs Enfans: il fault que chaque generation fasse les siennes.—5 Experience is not sufficient to teach Mankind Wisdom.
I wish you an honourable Issue of your Examination and pray you to write me as often as you can. Your Mother will require a more constant Attention to her than ever. My Love to the Baron, and Col smith & your sister. thank her for her present of American Manufacture.
I am Dear Charles your affectionate / father.
[signed] John Adams
RC (MHi:Seymour Coll.); internal address: “Charles Adams Esqr”; notation: “Eliza Blaeggs Wharf.”
1. Letter not found.
2. Thomas Paine, The Age of Reason: Being an Investigation of True and of Fabulous Theology, Part I, Paris, 1794. Paine wrote The Age of Reason as a justification of his deist beliefs, laying out proofs for the existence of a god but denying a Christian one. He wrote portions of the book while imprisoned in the Luxembourg Palace during the French Revolution (DAB).
3. Cola di Rienzo (1313–1354), though born of humble origins, succeeded in briefly overthrowing the barons who ruled Rome and reestablishing a Roman republic in 1347. Tommaso Aniello, commonly known as Masaniello (1620–1647), led a popular revolt in 1647 against the Spanish viceroy ruling Naples, the Duke of Arcos. The rebels succeeded in overthrowing Arcos, but Masaniello was murdered and the insurgency eventually collapsed (Ronald G. Musto, Apocalypse in Rome: Cola di Rienzo and the Politics of the New Age, Berkeley, Calif., 2003, p. 1–2, 27; Cambridge Modern Hist., 4:656–658).
4. Cleon (fl. 430s–420s B.C.), an Athenian politician, the son of a tanner, had a mixed record as a military leader but achieved considerable popular success through his persuasive oratory and extravagant promises. Although of aristocratic birth, Publius Clodius Pulcher (ca. 92–52 B.C.), a Roman tribune, was known for courting the support of the urban plebes and promoting their interests (Oxford Classical Dicy.).
5. See AA to JA, 26 Feb. 1794, and note 2, above.

Docno: ADMS-04-10-02-0145

Author: Adams, John
Recipient: Adams, John Quincy
Recipient: Adams, Thomas Boylston
Date: 1794-09-14

John Adams to John Quincy Adams
and Thomas Boylston Adams

[salute] My dear Sons

I once more wish you a prosperous Voyage an honourable Conduct and a happy Life. Remember your Characters as Men of Business as well as Men of Virtue, and always depend on the Affection and Friendship of your Father
[signed] John Adams
RC (Adams Papers); addressed: “My Sons”; internal address: “John Quincy and Thomas Boylston Adams”; endorsed by JQA: “My Father 14. Septr: 1794. / Recd: at Boston.” Tr (Adams Papers).

Docno: ADMS-04-10-02-0146

Author: Adams, Charles
Recipient: Adams, Abigail
Date: 1794-09-22

Charles Adams to Abigail Adams

[salute] My dear Mother

My books arrived in good order and well conditioned the day after I last wrote to my father.1 By some mistake the 28th volume of The Dictionaire Diplomatique was left behind.2 Though I have not seen an account of the departure of my brothers I suppose from my father’s last letter that e’er this they must have sailed One half of your children are called away from you and though seas do not divide you from the others yet necessity obliges them to be absent but wherever they are I trust they never can forget the maternal tenderness you have ever exercised toward them. You have indeed been a mother to us and such a one as we never can too highly value. My sister wishes you to pass the winter with her but I fear you will not again venture from home. Mrs Fitch has been very civil to me they appear to have a great affection for our family She says one of the principal inducements that Mr Fitch has for coming to settle in America is the friendship he has for my father3 The opinions of people here are very various respecting the success of Mr Jay’s mission. We have accounts that Genl Wayne has taken several British subjects in a late engagement with the Indians and hung them upon the trees4 I do not vouch for the truth of this but the conduct of the officers of the British Government towards this Country bear not a very favorable aspect. The antifederalists here predict that the whole power of the United S[tates] cannot quell the insurrection in Penn[sylvania] that open hostilities must be commenced there is no doubt for the indignities offered to the Commissioners cannot be overlooked The volunteers from N Jersey and Pennsylvania are very numerous In the former State they would not agree to the regular draft but insisted upon drafting for those who should not go. There has been as yet no requisition from this State if there should be one I shall take my musket and march in the ranks as I have been drafted as one of the minute men: this will not be altogether so convenient for me.5
On the fourteenth of October I shall set out for Albany The earnest solicitations of the Baron have drawn a promise from me to spend a few days with him at his solitude after I have passed my Counsellors examination. I have always lamented that you have so little acquaintance with this excellent man I never have know a { 232 } more noble character and his affection for me calls forth every sentiment of gratitude which can exist in my breast. I hope you will write to me frequently I feel as if every day some friend and I have not many was taken from me to those who remain I am more strongly attached but the affection to my Mother can never suffer any alteration I shall ever remain as heretofore I ever have been yours with the sentiments of the purest filial tenderness
[signed] Chas Adams
RC (Adams Papers); addressed: Mrs Abigail Adams. / Quincy”; endorsed: “C Adams / 22 Sepbr / 1794.” Some loss of text where the seal was removed.
1. Not found.
2. Jean Baptiste Robinet, Dictionnaire universel des sciences morale, économique, politique et diplomatique, 30 vols., London, 1777–1783.
3. For Eliphalet Fitch of Jamaica, see vol. 5:173.
4. George Washington had appointed Gen. Anthony Wayne commander-in-chief of the U.S. Army in the wake of Gen. Arthur St. Clair’s defeat at Fort Recovery, Ohio, in Nov. 1791. Wayne rebuilt the army and successfully defeated a coalition of Native Americans at the Battle of Fallen Timbers on 20 Aug. 1794. Following the battle, Wayne also approached the British-held Fort Miami but refrained from attacking it, instead burning the crops and leveling the ground around it (DAB; Harry Emerson Wildes, Anthony Wayne: Trouble Shooter of the American Revolution, N.Y., 1941, p. 343, 349, 422–425).
A report in Philadelphia, based on an undated letter from New York, suggested that in the wake of the battle, “several British subjects (said to be Canadians) were left wounded among the Indians, and my information states that Wayne hung two of them” (Philadelphia American Daily Advertiser, 22 Sept.).
For more on Wayne, see Descriptive List of Illustrations, No. 7, above.
5. The army raised to suppress the Whiskey Rebellion comprised citizens from Maryland, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, and Virginia. New York State did not enact a draft. Under the federal law establishing a uniform militia, enacted on 8 May 1792, “each and every free able-bodied white male citizen of the respective States, resident therein, who is or shall be of the age of eighteen years, and under the age of forty-five years” could be enrolled in the militia (Slaughter, Whiskey Rebellion, p. 212; Annals of Congress, 2d Cong., 1st sess., p. 1392–1395).

Docno: ADMS-04-10-02-0147

Author: Otis, Samuel Allyne
Recipient: Adams, John
Date: 1794-10-16

Samuel A. Otis to John Adams

[salute] Dear Sir

Agreeable to intimation I have been enquiring for accommodations for you but to no purpose unless you should like rooms in Francis’s house. It is not easy to know exactly what will be agreeable to our friends tho we may sometimes please ourselves— I have gone so far however as to engage with Francis on condition you like & wish for your immediate answer—
Francis’s house is in 4th Street near Indian Queen.
He will let you have a genteel room, front, one pair of stairs for a drawing room, & A convenient & contiguous lodging room on the same floor— Breakfast & Coffee in the afternoon in your own { 233 } { 234 } appartments, dine with the Gentlemen lodgers, to number of nine or ten, to be all members of Congress— To accommodate Mr Brasler with a lodging room & board—you to find your own liquor fire and Candles and pay twenty1 dollars the week for self & Sert accommodated as above to wit: Two rooms for yourself & a lodging room for Mr Brasler. You will please to observe, If you ask company to dine transiently you pay consideration pr Man. If you make a dinner specially, for which by the way there will be no occasion, you agree specially— The price & large company will be objectionable, but I suppose the members of Congress for a single room must pay 10 dollars a week & 4 or 5 for servant— You have two rooms & Valet de Chambre a lodging room. As to the Company they will be all members of Congress. If you go to private logings you will perhaps be obliged to sit down with some tradesman & wife or both— And Iz——d who is breaking up house keeping & sending off the baggage says he’ll be d——ned if he sits down to dine with a hairdresser— However I have endeavored to state matters to your view minutely and to add, tis not black Sam but the other Francis, who with wife appear to be decent kind of people, that I am in negotiation.2
The fever and ague has prevaled at New York New Jersies & thro this State and City. Intermittents also prevail, And there have been a few cases of yallow fever. People however are now pretty easy. No cases have happened of yallow fever above 2d Street, and fever & ague abates—3
Fitzsimmons will be run hard if he dont lose his election. Tis hoped however that the army will bring him in. The Legislature having provided for their voting by special statute.—4 The accounts are favorable from the west— The President being expected prior to the Session— Mrs Otis & Miss S join me in best remembrances to yourself & the ladies—5
I am / Sir / Respectfully / yours
[signed] Sam A Otis
1. Otis emphasized this word by writing it significantly larger.
2. John Francis (d. ca. 1807), a Frenchman, ran a hotel on South Fourth Street with his American wife; members of Congress frequently resided there (Robert B. Ludy, Historic Hotels of the World, Past and Present, Phila., 1927, p. 115–117; Philadelphia American Daily Advertiser, 27 April 1807).
The other Francis was Samuel “Black Sam” Fraunces (ca. 1722–1795), a Philadelphia tavern keeper best known as a steward for George Washington and the one-time proprietor of Fraunces Tavern in New York City (John N. Ingham and Lynne B. Feldman, African-American Business Leaders: A Biographical Dictionary, Westport, Conn., 1994).
3. That is, most of the city west of the Delaware River and the Philadelphia waterfront.
4. On 22 Sept. the Pennsylvania state { 235 } assembly approved and Gov. Thomas Mifflin signed into law a measure “to enable such of the militia of this commonwealth as may be on service, and absent from their respective countries, to vote at the next general election.” Army returns were not enough, however, to secure Thomas Fitzsimons’ reelection to Congress nor to have a significant impact in the Philadelphia area generally: “About 900 citizens of Philadelphia are with the militia; of these perhaps one third are under voting age or are otherwise disqualified to exercise the right of suffrage. Besides many disapproved of the law which authorized citizens in arms to exercise that right, and will not take the benefit of it. so that probably not more than 500 city votes may be expected from that quarter. It would require a very great proportion of that number indeed to be thrown in the scale of the unsuccessfull candidates, to change the result” (Acts of the General Assembly of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, Passed at a Session, Which Was Begun and Held at the City of Philadelphia, on Monday, the First Day of September, in the Year One Thousand Seven Hundred and Ninety-Four, Phila., 1794, p. 633–636, Evans, No. 27477; Biog. Dir. Cong.; Philadelphia General Advertiser, 16 Oct.).
5. That is, Betsy Smith, Mary Smith Gray Otis’ sister.

Docno: ADMS-04-10-02-0148

Author: Adams, Thomas Boylston
Recipient: Adams, John
Date: 1794-10-19

Thomas Boylston Adams to John Adams

[salute] My dear Sir

I embrace the earliest opportunity to acquaint you of our safe & happy arrival at this place after a Passage of 28 days. I scarcely conceive it possible at any Season of the year to have a more delightful Voyage; we got soundings on the 21st: day after our departure, and arrived at Deal on the 28th: in London the 29th: exactly four weeks from the day of Embarkment at Boston. With a fast sailing vessel we should probably have made a much shorter passage, for during the first 23 days, we had not six hours unfavorable wind— With such good fortune the Atlantic Ocean would become a much less formidable object; I thought myself quite an experienced Navigator compared with some on board, particularly our Servant, who was during the greater part of the time rather in need of attendance, than capable of affording any. My Brother scarcely lost his appetite, and our fellow Passenger Mr: Walker was as little indisposed as myself.1 “It is a good Bridge (says the proverb) that carries you safe over”; our Ship, tho’ old, leaky, & weak has brought us in a short time & in perfect safety, upon this principle she deserves our commendation; we might have gone further & fared worse.
Since my arrival, I have scarcely been able to do any thing of consequence; if the novelty of the scene into which I have entered does not confuse my ideas too much, I shall be able perhaps at an early period to commence the subject of Politic’s, at present I can attempt only to give the flying rumors of the day, without being able to distinguish the degree of probability due to any of them.
{ 236 }
The French have within three months past, been successful beyond calculation; they have penetrated into Holland, much farther than at any former period; they have taken Bois-le-duc, Crevecœur &ca within a fortnight past, and the general apprehension here seems to be, that they will in a short time, be in possession of Amsterdam— The Stadtholder is at present invested with absolute power, & the only question seems to be, whether he shall capitulate for his Country & surrender it under the best terms he can make to the French, or make the attempt to save it by inundation—a measure to which we are told the Dutch are less inclined at this moment, than at any former period—2
There is a rumor of a Battle having been fought by Genl Wayne, & the Canadians in conjuction with the Indians; scarce a day passess but some story of this sort is buffeted about, to keep the mind in agitation, or to answer some stock jobing purpose—and yet, if a war should take place between us—not the hundredth part of this people would know the cause or the occasion— It is certain to me, that they never make the enquiry upon any occasion—whether right or wrong, is not a matter that seems to concern them? Why should it? The Government under which they live appears to be essential to their happiness, and if in need of support or defence it must & will have it—
Yet the Administration appear to have terrors and apprehensions, which are real, or they are merely fictitious, and are to be used as the signals of destruction to some of the most obnoxious characters in this Kingdom. Under an accusation of Treason several persons are now in confinement; Bills of Indictment have been found against them & their trials are shortly to come on; among others is the celebrated Horne Tooke—3
Mr Jay’s negotiations are much the subject of conversation; what he has done, or is likely to effect is as little known here, as in America— I have heared but one sentiment expressed upon the subject by the people I have seen; it is, that the dispute may be amicably adjusted; the expectation however of the sudden accomplishment of so vast an object, is not so sanguine here, as with you— Diplomatic delay is perhaps better understood. Mr Jay is rather indisposed by a Rheumatic affection in his head; he is better at present, than we found him upon our arrival—
At present I can only add that I am in all / duty & affection / Your Son
[signed] T B Adams
{ 237 }
RC (Adams Papers); internal address: “The Vice President / of the United States”; endorsed by Richard Cranch: “T B A to J A / Oct 19th 1794.”
1. Dudley Walker was a Boston merchant and shopkeeper (Thwing Catalogue, MHi).
2. The French Army had been slowly making its way into the Netherlands since late 1793. By July 1794, it had reached Brussels, then Antwerp, and by November, Maastricht and Nijmegen. In December, the French successfully crossed the Waal River, thanks to an ill-timed freeze, and in early Jan. 1795 conquered Utrecht. Over the same period, Patriot Party members in Amsterdam and elsewhere in the Netherlands prepared for revolution, though not without opposition. In mid-Oct. 1794 the stadholder, William V, demanded that the Amsterdam Council take measures to prevent the Patriots from seizing control, and proclamations were enacted banning public meetings and reading societies. But by Jan. 1795, with the continuing advance of the French Army, the States General felt compelled to sue for peace. Revolutionary activities increased in anticipation of the French takeover, and on 18 Jan. William V went into exile (Schama, Patriots and Liberators, p. 171–191).
3. John Horne Tooke was tried for high treason, ostensibly for planning an uprising in support of the French Revolution but primarily for his participation in a constitutional reform society. Most of the evidence against him turned out to have been fabricated by Horne Tooke himself, and he was found not guilty on 22 Nov. 1794 (DNB). See also TBA to JA, 2 Nov., below, and for other similar trials, see JA to AA, 14 Dec., and to CA, 20 Dec., both below.

Docno: ADMS-04-10-02-0149

Author: Adams, Thomas Boylston
Recipient: Adams, Abigail
Date: 1794-10-20

Thomas Boylston Adams to Abigail Adams

[salute] My dear Mother

A Passage of 28 days, landed me & my fellow Passengers safe on the shore of England— Our desire was to be put on shore at Dover, but the tide being against us from the place where the Vessel came to, we were obliged to put in to Deal; a little swindling village a few miles above Dover; here we landed, & asif we had been made of Gold or something more precious, the people were crouding round us by dozens. I assumed an aspect as ferocious & forbiding as I was able, but it neither prevented their officiousness, nor disconcerted their most disinterested civility. I had prepared Whitcomb for the reception, by all the previous instruction within my knowledge, and I believe he was fully persuaded, that every man he saw was a Knave, and not to be trusted out of ones sight, nor in it. I gave him the Counter sign, & he let go the end of a Trunk which a sturdy Porter was attempting to take up, & which would have cost some trouble but for the sign. Whitcomb was sick most of the Voyage, & was not only useless, but an incumbrance; you informed me of one complaint which I found very prevalent at Sea; and your specific for it was the only thing forgotten; I trusted to you or Dr: Welsh to have it put up; but neither our private medeine chest, nor that belonging to the Vessel contained it. A spoonful of Castor Oil would have prevented many bad effects, which other medicines did not for a { 238 } longtime relieve— we all found ourselves tollerably well upon arrival; indeed I was really Sea sick but about 12 or 20 hours, & that on the second day. The weather for the most part was pleasant enough; sometimes a little blustering but as it was usually fair, it was perhaps better to have too much, than too little—
Since my arrival here, I have scarcely been able to transact any business; when the novelty of the scene shall be passed, I hope to rally my scattered senses, round the standard of reason & moderation once more. At present, were I to attempt a description of the different impressions I have received, my language must partake of the incoherence of my ideas; wandering as a dream, & more rapid in succession, a detail at present might bear a nearer resemblance to a real reverie, than afford a true sketch of occurrences.
For the movement of the political waters, I must refer to what I have written to my Father.1 It is a small portion only, of the news of the day, & very hastily, drawn. We are waiting for the return of the Mail from Holland to learn the real state of affairs in that Country, and what we are to expect upon our arrival there— The general apprehension here seems to be that the ruling powers of Holland will negotiate the most favorable terms with the French, they can; but it scarce admits a doubt, that the French will be able in a short time to impose what terms they please. It will not be a pleasant thing to reside in that Country at this period; but since the death of Robespiere the system of the French is said to be less sanguinary, & should they even overrun Holland during our residence, we may chance to escape molestation.2 In the course of a week from this time, we expect to take our departure from London.
Mr: Jay we found somewhat indisposed, but he has recovered so far as to go out— He is treated with a vast deal of respect & attention. A War with America, is the subject of conversation, but the universal wish so far as I have heared seems to be for peace & amity— The French are & have been successful, beyond all calculation for four months past.
I cannot omit to mention the Civility of Mr. Dickason & his family;—every attention has been shewn us by them within their power.3 In the procurement of our Bagage we have received every assistance. Mr. Vaughan, Mr Bird, and in short every person to whom we have been introduced, have discovered a disposition to serve us, much beyond my expectations.4 I shall certainly be ennamored with the hospitality of this people, whatever drawback may arise from other sources—
{ 239 }
I wish to say a thousand things more, but for the present must content myself with subscribing
[signed] Thomas B Adams
RC (Adams Papers); addressed: “Mrs: A Adams”; internal address: “Mrs A Adams”; endorsed by Richard Cranch: “T B A. to A A. Oct 20th / 1794.”
1. Of 19 Oct., above.
2. Maximilien Robespierre’s death on 28 July ushered in a new phase of the French Revolution. While there was no change in governmental structure per se—the National Convention remained the governing body— and the First French Republic continued, it marked a significantly more moderate phase of the Revolution (Bosher, French Rev., p. 202–203, 226–232). For more on these events, see Descriptive List of Illustrations, No. 8, above.
3. Thomas Dickason of the London mercantile firm Dickason & Co. (formerly Champion & Dickason) had substantial commercial dealings in the United States. His son, Thomas Dickason Jr., spent time in Boston in the early 1790s collecting wartime debts from various American merchants (James B. Hedges, The Browns of Providence Plantations: The Colonial Years, Providence, 1968, p. 300; TBA Diary, 17 Oct. 1794, M/TBA/1, APM Reel 281).
4. For William Vaughan, see vol. 7:46. Mr. Bird was probably Henry Merttins Bird (b. 1755) of the London mercantile and banking firm of Bird, Savage & Bird, whose other partners were Henry’s brother Robert and Benjamin Savage, originally from South Carolina (S. R. Cope, “Bird, Savage & Bird of London, Merchants and Bankers, 1782 to 1803,” Guildhall Studies in London History, 4:202–203 [April 1981]).

Docno: ADMS-04-10-02-0150

Author: Adams, John Quincy
Recipient: Adams, Abigail
Date: 1794-10-25

John Quincy Adams to Abigail Adams

No 1.

[salute] My dear Madam

We have been already ten days in this place, but there has been no opportunity to Boston since our arrival. And altho’ I have done but very little, yet I have been so perpetually busy, that I have scarce found time even to write to the Secretary of State, and to my Father.1
My Brother I presume has informed you, how pleasant our passage was in every respect, excepting the conveyance, & how very unpleasant in that. It is the second time I have been to Sea in a crazy Ship, I think I shall beware of the third.
Mr Jay is yet here, and I hope there is a prospect of his coming to some terms with the Ministry, which will be satisfactory to the honor, and advantageous to the interests of the United States.
The situation of their affairs here is such that an absolute quarrel with America, would not be a eligible thing for them; I believe they are sick enough of their war with France.
The Hollanders must either make a separate peace, or lay the whole Country under water, or surrender at discretion to the French Armies. Flanders and Brabant are in possession of the Republican { 240 } troops; Maestricht & Nimeguen are beseiged, and are not expected to hold out long.
In Spain, Sardinia, and the Austrian Dominions the French are equally successful.2 If they can but learn to be moderate in their prosperity, there is no doubt but they may make their own terms of peace with all the allies except Britain; There is little present prospect of peace between these two powers.
You have heard what has been the fate of Robespierre. A party of moderates have succeeded him, their characteristic is clemency and gentleness; But their power is far from being established, and the Jacobins are against them. There will be more bloody work among them before long.
In this Country, Loyalty is yet very fashionable I was at Covent Garden Theatre the other evening, when the tune of “God save the King” was played by the band; the whole audience rose, & stood all the time it was performing, clapping their hands, and crying Bravo, as if it had been the scene of a favorite Play. I suspect the heart, did not in every instance join in the applause.
Horne Tooke, & eight other persons, are to be tried for High Treason, next week. It will require some latitude of construction, to make their offence if proved, amount to High Treason, but from the temper of the times, they will probably, many of them be found guilty.
A Conspiracy to assassinate the king, has been discovered, or invented; but the story of it, contains so much of the marvelous, that I think it hardly worth telling, and indeed I know not precisely what it is.3
The political situation of this people, is far from being happy. But the face of the Country is beautiful beyond description. Its appearance between Dover & this City, has greatly improved since we travelled that road together.4 The Country is under higher cultivation, and the towns exhibit greater opulence. The roads are in higher perfection, and the Inns more elegant, and with greater accomodations. You will scarcely believe all this to be possible, but it is unquestionably true. Since the peace with America, this Country has been prosperous in its Commerce beyond all conception, and at this moment, its opulence is incredible. Britain is the Sidon of the day, but I think she has now reached the ultimate point of her exaltation, and her future glory will be to tell of what she was.
We intend to sett out for the Hague, next tuesday, which will be, the 28th: instant. The situation of that Country is so very critical, { 241 } that I cannot omit going over without an hour of unnecessary delay. You will not harbor any anxiety on our account from the French Armies being there. We are Neutrals, and peaceable men; friends of both parties, and shall take no share in their contests on either side. Our rights therefore will undoubtedly be respected. The french armies are said to be under the severest discipline, and observe the most perfect regularity and order. The British troops there, have a reputation so different, that the Hollanders are much more afraid of their allies, than of their Enemies.
But our immediate departure, obliges us further to postpone, the fulfilment of our promise of the Miniatures in Bracelets; we have been so much employed every moment of our time, that it has been altogether impossible for us to get the likenesses taken; We shall however, if we can find an artist in Holland, of proper skill, have them taken there, & the setting, we can have done here at any time.
There are not many Americans here at this time, and I have seen but few of your old acquaintance. Mr T Boylston paid us a visit yesterday; he is at liberty, but pretty well stripped of his immense fortune; He speaks of his will, and of the extraordinary things, he would have done and appears to think the Town of Boston, and the State of Massachusetts as much indebted to him, as if they actually enjoyed all the benefits he intended for them. I gave him some offence by scrupling to give him a certificate that he is a Citizen of the United States. “After all he had done for us he thought it a little extraordinary, that I should have any doubts upon the subject.” On the whole, I believe he is really an American Citizen, but I was not certain, and refered him for his certificate to the American Minister at this Court.5
We are to dine with Mr Hallowell tomorrow. Mrs Hallowell labors under a severe disorder, which they expect will soon take her to a better world.6
We have not seen Mrs Copley, but your letter has been delivered to her, and we shall see her before we go to Holland. Mr Copley is employed upon a picture of Charles the 1st: demanding the five members in the house of Commons.7 It is a very good subject, and will I think be particularly interesting at the present time.
We have been once to each of the two Theatres, Mrs Siddons still commands universal admiration at Drury Lane, and a Miss Wallis has appeared this Season with great applause at Covent Garden.8 I enclose a new Comedy of Cumberland, which I hope will afford you an hour’s amusement.9
{ 242 }
Please to remember me affectionately to all our friends at Quincy, and accept the assurance of the most unalterable respect, and attachment / from your Son.
LbC in TBA’s hand (Adams Papers); internal address: “Mrs: A Adams / Quincy”; APM Reel 126.
1. JQA wrote letters to JA on 23 Oct. (Adams Papers) and to Edmund Randolph on 22 and 25 Oct. (Lb/JQA/3, APM Reel 127). In these letters, JQA commented on his delivery of dispatches to John Jay and the state of the treaty Jay was negotiating, and he discussed at length the political situation in the Netherlands and the activities of the French Army.
2. The French had been at war with Sardinia since Sept. 1792 and Spain since March 1793. By fall 1794, the French had successfully occupied most of the major passages through the Alps though they stopped short of moving offensively into the Piedmont area. In Spain, they had crossed the Pyrenees and by late 1794 controlled most of northern Catalonia (Cambridge Modern Hist., 8:437–441, 854–856).
3. Just prior to his execution in October, Robert Watt, a wine merchant convicted of high treason for his support of radical reform in Britain, confessed to, among other things, a purported attempt to violently overthrow the British government and coerce the king into calling a new Parliament. The alleged conspiracy also planned a siege of Windsor Castle (The Later Correspondence of George III, ed. A. Aspinall, 5 vols., Cambridge, Eng., 1963, 2:256).
4. JQA traveled with his mother, father, and sister from London to Dover then on to Paris in Aug. 1784 (vol. 5:419).
5. For Thomas Boylston, see vol. 4:342–343. He had recently been released from King’s Bench Prison and lost his considerable fortune after the failure of the firm of Lane, Son & Frazer in 1793 (Col. Soc. Mass., Pubns., 36:299 [1954]). See also D/JQA/21, 25 Oct., APM Reel 24, and M/TBA/2, 25 Oct., APM Reel 282, for additional observations by JQA and TBA on their meeting with Boylston.
6. For Benjamin Hallowell, see JA, D&A, 1:295. Mary Boylston Hallowell, a first cousin of Susanna Boylston Adams Hall, died in London on 22 Nov. 1795 (Massachusetts Mercury, 15 March 1796).
7. John Singleton Copley began work on his Charles I Demanding in the House of Commons the Five Impeached Members as early as 1781 but put it aside for other projects. He made sporadic progress on it throughout the 1780s and by 1791 turned to it as his next major work after the completion of The Siege of Gibraltar. By late 1794 Charles I was well along; Copley exhibited it publicly in London for the first time on 5 May 1795 (Jules David Prown, John Singleton Copley: In England 1774–1815, Washington, D.C., 1966, p. 343–345).
8. Tryphosa Jane Wallis (fl. 1789–1814), the daughter of a country actor, had primarily performed at Bath but returned to London on 7 Oct. 1794 to appear at Covent Garden, where she had a distinguished career for several years. She retired from the theater after marrying James Campbell in 1797, although she briefly returned in 1813–1814 without great success (DNB; Philip H. Highfill, A Biographical Dictionary of Actors, Actresses, Musicians, Dancers, Managers & Other Stage Personnel in London, 1660–1800, 16 vols., Carbondale, Ill., 1973–1993).
9. The enclosure has not been found but was dramatist Richard Cumberland’s The Jew, London, 1794.

Docno: ADMS-04-10-02-0151

Author: Otis, Samuel Allyne
Recipient: Adams, John
Date: 1794-10-28

Samuel A. Otis to John Adams

[salute] Dear Sir

I wrote you soon after my arrival that I had engaged you lodgings at Franciss Hotel, Two rooms first floor, for 20 dollars, but not having your answer shall relinquish them—And for two reasons— 1st The { 243 } place is two public—you must dine with a large Company and not the most respectable part of Congress; in short you must lodge at a tavern and at a dear rate— 2d I have got you two rooms on the first floor and room for a servant in a private family for 16 dollars, To have a table to yourself— This family are younger English people by the name of Alder, and have no young children—And are recommended as sober decent people.1 They live in the house next to where Wolcott formerly lived fronting Binghams; So from your front chamber you may see madam prink about her Garden as often as you think it worth while to go from your fire to your window.
I dont know any objection you can have except to distance from Congress. But tis not half so far as you usually walk for pleasure—
Your friends did not like the Idea of setting you down with all the company usually dining at the Hotel of Francis, and I confess it was until now Hobsons choice— There is one spare room [at] Alders which they will or will not put a Gentleman in as you prefer and none but such as you may approve— Not having an Idea that you will disapprove the plan as now altered, I enclose you Alders direction—Who has engaged to furnish the rooms in a neat genteel Style.2
With respects to Mr Smith & Lady I have the honor to be / your most humble Sert
[signed] Sam A. Otis
Nothing need be said to Francis but that you preferred more retired Lodgings—
RC (Adams Papers); addressed: “The Vice President / of / The United States / To the care of Col: Wm Smith / New York”; endorsed: “S A Otis. / 1794.” Some loss of text where the seal was removed.
1. Caleb Alder was a British upholsterer who lived at 119 South Third Street, near the home of William and Anne Bingham (Philadelphia Directory, 1796, p. 125, Evans, No. 28845; Philadelphia American Daily Advertiser, 26 Sept.; Philadelphia Directory, 1795, Evans, No. 27089).
2. Enclosure not found.

Docno: ADMS-04-10-02-0152

Author: Adams, John
Recipient: Adams, Abigail
Date: 1794-11-02

John Adams to Abigail Adams

[salute] My Dearest Friend

We arrived here last night in good Season. The Roads were not very bad, and the Weather, tho Showery, was not inconvenient.
Mr Freeman the Son of our late Neighbours at Milton and a Mr Thorp of New York were our Companions in the Stage. Mr Freeman is a very agreable Man. I never travelled with any Man more assiduous to make me comfortable.1
{ 244 }
At Church I met my Old Friends Governor Huntington and Lt Governor Wolcot.2 Mr Trumbull I have not yet Seen. He is confined with the Vapours.3
Mr Speaker Trumbull is Senator for Six Years from next March.4
The Weather is to day as fine as possible.
I hope the East Winds have brought in more Treasures from the Sea, and that my Farmers continue to Secure them.
In the Country Towns in Mr Ames’s District I found a Spirit in his favour very different from that in some People of Boston.5 I dont despair of him yet.
Take great Care of your Health and of that of Louisa. Four Months will soon be gone, when I hope to find you happy in good News from our Children abroad & at home, in good health and Spirits, and ardent for another Agricultural Campaign more glorious but less fatiguing than the last. Duty to Mother & Love to all
your without ceasing
[signed] J. A
RC (Adams Papers); internal address: “Mrs A”; endorsed: “Novbr / 2d / 1794.”
1. That is, Jonathan Freeman Jr., for whom see vol. 9:61. He was the son of Ruth Hatch Freeman (b. 1733) and Capt. Jonathan Freeman (1728–1796), a shipmaster and merchant, who had lived in Foy House on Milton Hill (Frederick Freeman, Freeman Genealogy, Boston, 1875, p. 111–112).
2. Gov. Samuel Huntington (1731–1796) of Connecticut had served with JA in the Continental Congress and was a signer of the Declaration of Independence. He was governor from 1786 until his death (DAB).
3. That is, John Trumbull, JA’s friend and former law clerk.
4. Jonathan Trumbull Jr. (1740–1809), Harvard 1759, had been a U.S. representative from Connecticut from 1789 to 1795. He served in the Senate only until 1796, when he resigned to become lieutenant governor of the state (Biog. Dir. Cong.).
5. Fisher Ames represented the First Middle District—including Boston and surrounding towns—in Congress. He won reelection with a majority of votes in Boston as well as in several other communities in the area (same; Boston Federal Orrery, 6 Nov. 1794).

Docno: ADMS-04-10-02-0153

Author: Adams, Thomas Boylston
Recipient: Adams, John
Date: 1794-11-02

Thomas Boylston Adams to John Adams

No 2,

[salute] My dear Sir,

By the Ship John, Captn. Duer I gave you information of our safe arrival at London,1 and I now embrace the earliest opportunity of acquainting you that on the evening of the 31st of October we reached the place of our destination. We left London on the evening of the 28th. and reached Harwitch the next day at noon; about 5 oClock we got under Sail on board a Packett for Helvoetsluys with a fair wind, and the ensuing morning by 10 we were off Helvoet—but the sea was so rough, that we did not reach the shore ’till near 2 in { 245 } the afternoon. Our baggage was put into a Waggon, and my Brother & myself walked in company with several other Gentlemen to The Briel, where we lodged. The ensuing day we reached the Hague by the way of Delft. This Sir, is a regular Journal of our travels from London to this place. Our stay in London was so short, that I had little opportunity for the gratification of my curiosity. Our letters of introduction procured us an hospitable reception, whereever they were delivered, and were the means of carrying us into much genteel company. I could not but observe that the generality of people were more willing to make American affairs the subject of conversation, than those of their own Country. Whether this was most, the dictate of complaisance to us, or of apprehension for themselves, I can only indulge my conjectures. Certain it is, that freedom of conversation is not at this period much in fashion. Occasionally a man may be heared to talk of the folly & the incapacity of the Ministry, but such instances are very rare. There are some who attempt to reconcile every measure of the Ministry, with perfect justice, & yet with respect to the complaints of America declare themselves advocates for the redress of their grievances. Here I confess their Logic confuses me. English justice must have a new kind of ballance, if right and wrong can preserve the equilibrium when weighed together.
It seems to be generally believed that the difference between the two Countries will be amicably adjusted for the present, but there are some who will not persuade themselves that every object of future contention will be cancelled. Punica fides,2 will indeed be modernized, if Treaties, which have hitherto been considered the most solemn pledges of fidelity between Nations, are hereafter to be estimated as of no higher obligation than temporary truces. And yet this sentiment is said to have been already broached in English companies, if not in the English cabinet.
I could not but regret, that the critical situation of affairs in Holland, rendered our departure from England absolutely necessary at a time when the important trials for High treason were just brought on. The prisoners were arraigned on the 25th: ult, and their trials commenced on the 28th: the day we sat off for this place. I was so much occupied in preparation for departure, that I could not be present when the Indictments were read. The prisoners severally plead “not guilty,” Horne Took upon being asked “how will you be tried”? Answered, “I would be tried, by God and my Country.” Mr: Erskine, & a Mr Gibbs, are of Counsel for Mr: Took;3 the trials are { 246 } expected to take up thirty days; and the common opinion is that many if not all will be found guilty. What will be the effect of these trials, is dubious; either they will intimidate all opposition for the present, and suppress the spirit of reform, by giving it the more serious aspect of rebellion, or they will produce a paroxism in the public body, that may prove dangerous at least to the present order of things. That there are many people in Great Britain desirous of subverting the English Constitution, I cannot readily believe. But the necessity of an alteration of some sort in the national councils is seen, or said to be seen by numbers.
Reformation or a total subversion of the English Constitution has so long been a subject of speculation, and the standing theme of political declaimers, that if this were not the age of Revolution, I should think the present prevalence of such surmises deserving of little regard. Individual opression has frequently produced violent convulsions in England heretofore, but it was not till the evil had been universally felt, and tho the instance is single which was said to produce the Habeas Corpus, yet the Nation had not before been brought to declare the feeling sense of its necessity.
We have not found the state of things so alarming in this Country, as I expected when we left London. The people appear to be tranquil, at least in their actions, as yet; whatever disgust they may express—I shall not be likely to understand them. The orange Cockade is very prevalent, but I know not whether it be any more an infallible badge of devotion to the Prince, than an English man’s rising uncovered in a play house while the tune “God Save the King” is performing, is of loyalty in his heart to his Sovereign. In both I think I can discover some hypocrisy.
The Duke of York is still at Nimeguen, and the french are yet before Maestricht. How long either of them will remain stationary is doubtful. The Hague is not considered a place of absolute safety for the Representatives of either of the powers at War with France; the choir Diplomatique therefore, it is supposed, will be very thin at this place during the winter. I think Monsr Dumas told us, that except the representatives of Denmark & Sweeden there were few or none here at present. Yesterday my Brother took me with him to see this old Gentleman, we found him, in comfortable lodgings, but no family about him; it seems he has for some time lived separate from Madam his wife— We passed nearly two hours with him, and he appeared much rejoiced to see my Brother. I was in some degree acquainted with the character of this Gentleman, before I saw him, { 247 } and was happy to find so cheerful & active a man in one of his years. His enquiries after you & the rest of our family, appeared to be the dictate of a sincere regard, and his civilities to us evinced that he will not cease to oblige.
With sentiments of duty & respect / I remain / Your Son
[signed] Thomas B Adams.
RC (Adams Papers); internal address: “The Vice President / of the United States.”
1. The brig John, Capt. Dewar, arrived in Philadelphia in early Jan. 1795 (Philadelphia Gazette, 12 Jan.).
2. Literally Punic (or Carthaginian) fidelity, that is, treachery.
3. Sir Vicary Gibbs (1751–1820), a prominent lawyer originally from Exeter, assisted Thomas Erskine in defending John Horne Tooke. In 1795 he became solicitor general to the Prince of Wales, and in 1799, attorney general. He continued to hold a number of high legal offices, culminating in being named chief justice of the Court of Common Pleas in 1814 (DNB).

Docno: ADMS-04-10-02-0154

Author: Adams, Abigail
Recipient: Adams, John
Date: 1794-11-04

Abigail Adams to John Adams

[salute] my dearest Friend

This is the first fair morning we have had since you left me. you must have had an unpleasent journey Sunday the afternoon was pleasent, but Monday & twesday very rainy. I was anxious to learn how the Election went in Boston and sent to inquire last Evening of mr Black if he had heard from Town, and to my great Satisfaction learnt that mr Ames was chosen there; by what majority I did not hear. the present Post will however inform you. the Influence of the Jacobines has received a blow in concequence of it. tis said Jarvis will lose his senses— the publick will be no looser if that should be the case. Austin came forward in a publication last week with his Name in which he declares he will not stand a candidate in oppostion to Jarvis, concequently all his party were united with Jarvises1
you will want to know how the Farming Buisness goes on. the orchard is all coverd with sea weed as you desired. this day will compleat the spreading of it. about 90 Bushels of potatoes have been dugg at the two places to day the Hands propose to finish the Beach meddow
I am better than when you left me, So is Louissa. the Blister has proved very salutary in removing the pain from her stomack. I shall wish to hear soon from you. I forgot to request 2 Barrels of flower by the first vessel.
Yours most affectionatly
[signed] A Adams
{ 248 }
1. In the Boston Independent Chronicle, 30 Oct., Benjamin Austin Jr. declined to be considered as a candidate for Congress against Charles Jarvis. Austin suggested that the appearance of his name as a possible candidate was actually a plot to divide Democratic-Republicans; he “hoped that the insiduous plans of his opposers, will be frustrated.”

Docno: ADMS-04-10-02-0155

Author: Adams, John
Recipient: Adams, Abigail
Date: 1794-11-08

John Adams to Abigail Adams

[salute] My dearest Friend

We took the Packet at New Haven, and arrived at N. York as Soon as the Stage— Although We Saved no time, We avoided some bruizes, at the Expence of a little of the Mal De Mer.
Mrs Smith and Children all well. Charity Smith married to Mr Shaw, Brother of the late Consul at Canton.—1 Our Charles at Steuben after an Examination at Albany and an honourable Admission to the Rank of Counciller at Law. I was at his Office and Saw his Clerk who appears well pleased, and Says his Master has good Business.2 We arrived last night in this City and lodged at a Mr Alders opposite to Mr Binghams.
No Senate yet.—3 The President returned. All Submission, in the Whiskey Counties. But a Force will be kept there to ensure their Obedience for some necessary time.
Antifœderalism, Jacobinism and Rebellion are drooping their heads, very much discouraged.
Clark of N. Jersey and Comr. Gillon dead.4 Smith of Carolina elected with great Ecclat.5 Butler gone to Charleston last Week unaccountably.— &c &c &c. Bradley left out, for a Man of different Politicks.6 Langdon in danger.7 These are Symptoms. If Ames fails The next Congress will be more fœderal than any that has yet assembled. but I Still hope better Things.
Fine Weather— I will write nothing as yet of Agriculture. Take great Care of your health which is prescious to me beyond all Calculation.
The Fall of Robespierre, has a great Effect on the Public Mind.— It has Startled and terrified many, whose Confidence in him was excessive. I am as ever. yours / without reserve.
[signed] J A.
RC (Adams Papers); endorsed: “Novbr 8th / 1794.”
1. Benjamin Shaw (1758–1807), the son of a Boston merchant, married Charity Smith, WSS’s sister, on 1 November. Benjamin’s brother Samuel (1754–1794) had served in the artillery during the Revolutionary War, then went into business, sailing on the first American vessel to go to China. Appointed U.S. consul at Canton in 1786, he died while returning from his third voyage to Asia (DAB; New York Weekly Museum, 15 Nov.).
{ 249 }
2. Probably Samuel Bayard Malcom (1776–1815), Columbia 1794, who later became private secretary to JA during his presidency (Jefferson, Papers, Retirement Series, 5:43; JA to AA, 3 March 1797, Adams Papers).
3. While the 2d session of the 3d Congress was supposed to begin on 3 Nov. 1794, the Senate did not achieve a quorum until 18 Nov. (Annals of Congress, 3d Cong., 2d sess., p. 787).
4. Abraham Clark died on 15 Sept. after suffering sunstroke, and Alexander Gillon, for whom see vol. 4:55, died on 6 Oct. (DAB; Biog. Dir. Cong.).
5. For William Loughton Smith, see vol. 1:69. He served in the House of Representatives from 1789 until 1797 (Biog. Dir. Cong.).
6. Stephen Row Bradley (1754–1830), Yale 1775, a lawyer and judge, had served as a Democratic-Republican senator from Vermont from 1791 to 1795. He was replaced in the 4th Congress by Elijah Paine, a Federalist (same).
7. John Langdon was reelected senator from New Hampshire (same).

Docno: ADMS-04-10-02-0156

Author: Adams, John
Recipient: Adams, Abigail
Date: 1794-11-09

John Adams to Abigail Adams

[salute] My dearest Friend

I am now Settled.— The first night I went to a Mr Alders, opposite to Mr Binghams, but not liking the circumstance of living in an English Family an Upholsterer lately emigrated and not admiring the Rooms, I removed last night to Francis’s Hotel in 4th. Street, between Market and Chesnut Streets. Here I Shall be at School with a Society of Patriotic Members of Congress who are all, virtuous Republicans. I Shall agree with them as Gentlemen, but shall claim the Right of a virtuous Republican, to differ from them in political Questions, whenever I may think them in the Wrong.
Our Sensible and worthy Nephew Mr William Cranch Spent the last Evening with me, and gave me a particular Account of the vast Projects of Mr Greenleaf. His Sawmills in Georgia, his Iron Works on Hudsons River, his forty or an hundred Houses building in the Fœderal City &c &c &c. But among the rest I was Sorry to hear of his Opening a Loan in Holland though only at four Per Cent, to enable him to make Payments to his Workmen. I am apt to Suspect Speculations upon Credit, tho sometimes they may be Successful. I however have always placed my Glory in Moderation, not having Spirit enough to undertake, nor Understanding enough to conceive great Projects and Enterprizes.
My Lodings are the most decent of any in Town that I know of, and my Accommodations are quite agreable. Brisler has orders to send you Wheat & Rye Flour for a whole Year, but probably he will not ship it, till Ames returns from Boston. With the flour I shall send Grass seeds for next Spring. The Season with you, I hope is as agreable for Business as it is here, and if it is I hope to have all the Yards filled with The Treasures of the sea thrown in Such { 250 } Abundance on shore, and All the Grass Land in Hancock’s orchard covered with it.
If Hancocks Meadow could have a covering it would be more grateful for it, than any other Land I have at present.
Every Body is anxious about Mr Ames’s Election and impatient to know the Decision: if I he falls it will only be to rise the higher and the faster, for certainly a Man who has had so great a share in producing the present Prosperity of this Country cannot at his years be neglected. The Supposition is too dishonourable both to Government and People. both must be neither generous nor even selfish with common sense, to overlook so useful and honourable an Instrument, of their own fame and their own good. To choose in his Place at such a time as this a Man who has Opposed and Obstructed that very Prosperity, and who would probably very often put it to a hazeard as far as his Vote would go, would be Such a Proof of Levity Wantoness and Folly as I shall not believe till it is proved.
Mr Otis & Family are all very well, very kind and obliging.—
Above all Things take great Care of your Health and Louisa’s too
Yours as ever
[signed] J. A.
My Duty to my Mother & Lover to Brothers & sisters & Cousins &c
RC (Adams Papers); endorsed: “Novbr / 9th / 1794.”

Docno: ADMS-04-10-02-0157

Author: Adams, Abigail
Recipient: Adams, John
Date: 1794-11-10

Abigail Adams to John Adams

[salute] my dearest Friend

I hope you are agreably lodgd and that your Company will be to your mind. I rejoice in the ReElection of mr Ames, and mr Smith of Carolina. tis Said mr Freeman is chosen for Barnstable a clasmate of our Son JQA, a Lawyer, a worthy Sensible Man as I have heard.1 for this district mr Reed I hear is chosen. I do not however approve of Clergymen becomeing politicians. you may mak a Chaplin of him. I hear however that he is an ingenious Sensible Man.2 mr Dexter tis thought is not yet chosen, oweing to their being several persons voted for. a large number of votes for mr Gerry who did not wish to be considerd as a candidate and whose influence will be given to mr Dexter should a second vote be necessary.
I have read mr Munroe speach in the National assembly!!! Charmed with the stability of their counsels! what a consience. the { 251 } Translater may be in fault. every minister could not have made Such a speach.3
You wish to know how the Business proceeds— Savil Nightingal & Bracket have been constantly carting sea weed. they have brought sufficient to compleatly cover the orchard. it is not yet all spread oweing, to the potato which has taken of Some of the Hands, and will take they tell me, two days more to compleat. I inclose you a journal of the Buisness of every day since you left me. I set out tomorrow for Haverhill, leaving the weeks buisness agreed upon with Shaw.4 I hope to return on fryday, and by saturdays post to hear from you. do not let Brisler omit my flower. it has risen here to 52 shillings Remember me to all inquiring Friends Thomas thought mr Brisler had best send round his Bed & what things he left. I forgot to mention it to him. he will judge whether it is best to send them now or in the Spring
Your ever affectionate
[signed] A Adams
julia has scarcly got upon the settee since you went away She however retains her affection for the Bed—

ENCLOSURE

Shaw at this place I call N1. Shaw at the other No2
october 30. Shaw No 1 & 2 carting Sea weed. Joy getting wood Trask Hayden & Minos the No leged Negro diging potatoes5 Arnold & Bass spreading sea weed Copland absent. Statson in the Garden—
31 Shaw No1 Bass Arnold joy Minos at the Beach medow diging potatoes very small & slow work— driven of at 12 oclok by a heavy Rain. Spread sea weed in the afternoon shaw No 2 at home getting wood for himself & making a pigs trough Stutson in garden
Novbr 1 All Hands at the Beach medow. left only half a dozen Bushel
2d. sunday—
3d Shaw No1 No 2 joy and Copland splitting Hills Arnold & Bass spreading sea weed, a drisly wet day—
4th Shaw No 1 & 2—Copland Arnold Bass joy & Minos diging potatoes at shaws place
5 all Hands at potatoes stutson Garden
6 ditto—
7th shaw & Howard killing creatures6 Bass & Arnold employd all { 252 } day in bringing round the Scow— Copland Minos shaw No2 & joy at potatoes
8 shaw No1 & Bass loading the Scow & carting up sea weed joy Shaw No 2 Arnold Copland Minos diging potatoes
9th sunday—
10th shaw & Bass loading the Scow & carting up sea weed shaw No2 plowing captain Beals joy Copland Arnold potatoes
RC and enclosure (Adams Papers). Filmed at 7–10 Nov. 1794.
1. Nathaniel Freeman Jr. represented Massachusetts in the 4th and 5th Congresses (Biog. Dir. Cong.).
2. Rev. John Reed (1751–1831), Yale 1772, had been a chaplain in the U.S. Navy and was the minister of the First Congregational Church of West Bridgewater, Mass. He served as a representative in Congress from 1795 to 1801 (same).
3. James Monroe, the new U.S. minister plenipotentiary, was introduced in the French National Convention on 6 Sept. 1794 (An. II, 26 thermidor). His speech emphasized the commonalities and friendship between France and the United States: “Their governments have much analogy to each other. They both cherish like principles, and repose on a similar basis, to wit, the unalienable and equal rights of man. The remembrance, even of common dangers, can but augment their harmony, and cement their union.” He also praised “the wisdom and the firmness of her councils” and pledged the support of the U.S. government for “the liberty, prosperity and happiness of the French republic” (Boston Federal Orrery, 10 Nov.).
4. AA was going to Haverhill to visit Elizabeth Smith Shaw, whose husband, John Shaw, had passed away on 29 September. See AA to TBA, 30 Nov., below.
5. Possibly Samuel Trask (1736–1808), originally of Hingham but at this time living in Quincy (Sprague, Braintree Families).
6. Possibly Samuel Hayward (1760–1812) of Roxbury, a cordwainer (same; JA, D&A, 3:238).

ENCLOSURE

Shaw at this place I call N1. Shaw at the other No2
october 30. Shaw No 1 & 2 carting Sea weed. Joy getting wood Trask Hayden & Minos the No leged Negro diging potatoes5 Arnold & Bass spreading sea weed Copland absent. Statson in the Garden—
31 Shaw No1 Bass Arnold joy Minos at the Beach medow diging potatoes very small & slow work— driven of at 12 oclok by a heavy Rain. Spread sea weed in the afternoon shaw No 2 at home getting wood for himself & making a pigs trough Stutson in garden
Novbr 1 All Hands at the Beach medow. left only half a dozen Bushel
2d. sunday—
3d Shaw No1 No 2 joy and Copland splitting Hills Arnold & Bass spreading sea weed, a drisly wet day—
4th Shaw No 1 & 2—Copland Arnold Bass joy & Minos diging potatoes at shaws place
5 all Hands at potatoes stutson Garden
6 ditto—
7th shaw & Howard killing creatures6 Bass & Arnold employd all { 252 } day in bringing round the Scow— Copland Minos shaw No2 & joy at potatoes
8 shaw No1 & Bass loading the Scow & carting up sea weed joy Shaw No 2 Arnold Copland Minos diging potatoes
9th sunday—
10th shaw & Bass loading the Scow & carting up sea weed shaw No2 plowing captain Beals joy Copland Arnold potatoes

Docno: ADMS-04-10-02-0158

Author: Adams, John
Recipient: Adams, Abigail
Date: 1794-11-11

John Adams to Abigail Adams

[salute] My dearest Friend

Since the Certainty has arrived of the very honourable Reelection of our Friend Mr Smith of S. Carolina, the wiser Part of the Community have been the more anxious for that of Mr Ames. The Orrery from Boston, which arrived Yesterday has excited great Expectations, that the District in which Boston is placed, will not disgrace itself by disgracing Sound Principles and independent Conduct in that worthy Representative. Thursdays Post will relieve Us from all Uncertainty. Mr Swanwick is announced to be elected instead of Mr Fitsimmons, by a Small Majority, but it is Said it will be a contested Election Still, and Swanwick may be, for any Thing that I know as fœderal as his Rival.1
The President told me that Mr Finlay Said to him, at their Interview, that the Opposition of the People in the rebellious Counties of Pensilvania was not a Resistance to the Excise, or any other { 253 } particular Measure of Government, but it was an universal Opposition to All Law, all Government and all Magistracy. And that rather than go through Such another Scæne as he had witnessed among them he should wish to quit the Scæne of Life. This Declaration from Finlay is as important as it is curious.2
If The French Should be in Possession of The Hague and the United Provinces, Our Minister will not go there. His Credentials are to their High Mightinesses and His most Serene Highness, but if their Authority is annulled, either by Conquest or by a Change of Government, Mr Adams will wait in England for new Powers or further Orders. I do not believe however that the French will be in Holland nor the Government changed.
The President and his Lady enquired kindly after your Health. Mr Cranch I took with me on Sunday Evening and presented him to All the Family, where We drank Coffee and Spent two Hours. He gave The President & Lady a particular Account of the present State of the City of Washington.
Miss Custis, Mr Cranch Says, is to be married to Mr Peter of George Town son of a rich Proprietor in the Fœderal City.3
RC (Adams Papers); endorsed: “Novbr 11th / 1794.”
1. John Swanwick represented the first congressional district of Pennsylvania as a Democratic-Republican from 1795 to his death on 1 Aug. 1798. He was elected by a vote of 1,240 to 1,182 (Biog. Dir. Cong.; Michael J. Dubin, United States Congressional Elections, 1788–1994, Jefferson, N.C., 1998, p. 11–13).
2. William Findley (ca. 1741–1821) was originally from Ireland but immigrated to Pennsylvania in 1763. He held various state government posts before being elected as a representative from western Pennsylvania to the U.S. Congress in 1791. He served as a Democratic-Republican there until 1799, then again from 1803 to 1817 (Biog. Dir. Cong.). During the Whiskey Rebellion, he worked to quell the revolt and later wrote a book defending his actions, History of the Insurrection in the Four Western Counties of Pennsylvania, Phila., 1796, Evans, No. 30419.
3. Martha Parke Custis married Thomas Peter (1769–1834) of Georgetown in early Jan. 1795. Peter was the son of Robert Peter (1726–1806), a Scottish merchant who became the first mayor of Georgetown in 1789 (Washington, Papers, Presidential Series, 7:368; Charles Moore, The Family Life of George Washington, Boston, 1926, p. 116–117, 121).

Docno: ADMS-04-10-02-0159

Author: Adams, John Quincy
Recipient: Adams, Abigail
Date: 1794-11-11

John Quincy Adams to Abigail Adams

(2.)

[salute] My dear Madam

The day after the date of my last Letter,1 we dined at Mr: Hallowell’s, and were entertained with much hospitality. We saw his { 254 } Daughter, whom we found very amiable and accomplished After seeing her, I felt myself at least highly flattered by the proposal Mrs: Gill made to you, and the young Lady, certainly took the shortest way to my heart, by the manner in which she spoke of you.2 I was much gratified with my visit, and should have been really alarmed for myself, had not the absolute necessity for my immediate departure ensured my safety.
The day after we dined at Mr Copleys; and had the pleasure of seeing his two daughters. They are quite grown up, and the eldest particularly is pretty and engaging. I suppose my brother will write you more about her than I shall, for he was so much captivated, that I did not know, but I should have had to leave him behind.3
We both however made out to escape from that fascinating city, on the 28th: of the month, and by means of a fortunate water passage arrived here three days after.
As to the curiosities of London, we had not a moment of time to spare for the sight of them, which I regretted on my brother’s account, having seen heretofore most of the rarities myself. You will perhaps enquire how we could be so exceedingly busy for a whole fortnight. But what with the letters and visits to be delivered and paid; the trouble and vexation of getting our baggage through the gauntlet of Custom-House rapacity, the invitations to dinner which we could not avoid, and which the civility of our friends repeated every day of our stay there, the letters which we were obliged to write to America, to give notice of our safe arrival, and the time I was compelled to devote to conferences with our Ministers in London, I assure you we found it extremely difficult to get from thence as we did, and excepting two evenings which we filched to see a representation at each of the Theatres, we absolutely saw nothing atall.
As you will be informed by the public papers of the invasion of this Country by the French, you will perhaps imagine, that we found every thing here in the utmost confusion. The truth is quite the contrary. Every thing appears to me exactly as it did eleven years ago, except the greater number of Orange cockades at this time. It is probable that in a few days we shall have the cannonading within our own hearing. But these people do not stir a foot the more or the less for it.— They leave the defence of the Country entirely to the allied forces, who are beaten day after day from one station to another, and will very soon be dispersed, or prisoners of War, or shut { 255 } up within the walls of Amsterdam.— Maestricht and Nimeguen are both taken, and the next attack will probably be upon Utrecht. Yet here at the Hague, every thing has the appearance of profound peace, and I believe will continue so, happen what may.
We have hitherto been detained here, in order to go through the forms of my acknowledgment, but purpose going to Amsterdam in two or three days from this. We shall then see to the Execution of your Commissions for table-linen and broad-cloth, as well as to the arrangements relative to the funds
I found here few of my former acquaintance. Mr: Dumas, and his wife are both well, but they do not live together. Their daughter I have not yet seen, but shall pay her a visit ceremoniously tomorrow:— She is married, and has three children. I shall see her to avoid the appearance of singularity or affectation. I shall see her, I doubt not, with composure; perhaps with indifference, but not with pleasure.4
We do not find here as yet any of the nymphs of the Country, whose attractions are like to steal our hearts. I do not perceive, that either of the Graces has yet assumed the shape of a Dutch millener, to reduce the dimensions of the hoop, to lengthen the petticoat, or to whiten the stocking. We have seen however in the streets some very beautiful women, whom we have understood to be refugees from France.
The number of these unfortunate emigrants is very great; both in England and here. The poverty of many of them, must excite compassion, even without recurrence to the recollection of their former opulence the transition from the most immense fortunes to the most abject indigence is experienced by so many among them, that it is hardly a subject of notice at this time. I have heard it remarked, and I readily believed it to be the fact, that in general this extreme reverse of fortune, is supported with more magnanimity, and submitted to with more dignity by the women than by the men. The instances are not uncommon of families which have been hurrled from affluence to absolute want, the females of which at this day by their industry, obtain a subsistence not only for themselves but for the <despicable> partners of their misfortunes, who saunter about the streets, and idle away their present existence as they did that of their prosperity, incapable of exertion, and exhibiting the melancholy prospect, of objects, whom not even calamity itself can entitle to respect.
{ 256 }
What will become of these miserable beings, I know not. For the french Generals always inexorably except them from all terms of capitulation. And all those that have been found bearing arms have been shot without mercy. They are obliged to fly from one place of refuge to another, and are hunted down like wild beasts.
Since the fall of Robespierre, every day new details of the most inconceivable cruelty, are produced in the national Convention, and every thing is laid to his charge. The Leyden Gazette of this day contains the debates of the Convention on the subject till the 20th: of October. The eye of humanity turns away from the sight. The most detested despot, that ever afflicted the race of man, the most unrelengting thirst for blood ever indulged by priestly bigotry, the most abominable massacres of religion that ever desolated the earth furnish nothing to exceed the infamies committed in Britanny, La Vendee, and Lyons by the satellites of Robespierre; many of whom are now upon trial for being the instruments of his crimes. I suppose that the debates in the Convention, from whence all these facts appear, will be republished in America, before this reaches you.5 The wanton and unnecessary effusion of blood, which so long desolated the french republic, has at length become unfashionable: the people are shocked at the proceedings which they so long permitted, and the tail of Robespierre, that is the colleagues and cooperators of this execrable tyrant, have become the objects of public detestation. Barrere, Collot d’Herbois and Billaud, Varennes, dare not open their lips in the Convention.6 The affiliated popular Societies have become very unpopular, and the Convention will no doubt abolish them as soon as they shall think themselves strong enough to do so. For the popular Societies and the system of terror are still formidable, and if the fashion of humanity should pass as rapidly as all the other political fashions which have alternately had a momentary prevalence, for the last five years, terror will again become the order of the day; new inventions for expediting the wholesale trade of murder will be multiplied, Modesty will again be obliged to hide her head, and Benevolence to weep in secret at the celebration of Republican nuptials, and the furies of destruction will again be loosened to feast on human blood.— Let us hope however for better things, and in particular that the dreadful evils which France has suffered from this connection of popular societies, evils which she could not arrest, but which she is now obliged to punish by severities almost equally afflicting, may be deeply impressed upon the minds of our own Countrymen, and destroy the influence of those { 257 } self-constituted Legislators, that have arisen among us in imitation of the popular Societies in France.
The prospects of Europe are thickening, and a deadly gloom hangs over their futurity. The progress of opinions adverse to the system of hereditary privileges is continually advancing, and the Nations of this Hemisphere, are growing more and more dissatisfied, with the Governments to which they have hitherto submitted;
They have not however provided themselves with any rational plan of policy to substitute in their stead. “With heaviest sound, a Giant Statue falls.”7 and what sort of fabric will be erected upon its ruins, it would require gifts more than prophetic to conjecture.
Whatever the event may be, I am sure you will most fervently pray, that our own Country may still be the abode of Peace and Happiness, in which prayer you will ever be joined by your affectionate Son
[signed] John Q. Adams.8
RC (Adams Papers); internal address: “Mrs: Adams. Quincy.”; endorsed: “JQ Adams Novbr / 11 1794.” LbC (Adams Papers); APM Reel 126. Tr (Adams Papers).
1. That is, 26 Oct.; see JQA to AA, 25 Oct., above.
2. For Rebecca Boylston Gill’s suggestion of a match between JQA and Mary Hallowell, see vol. 9:388, 389.
3. The Copley’s two daughters were Mary (ca. 1773–1868) and Elizabeth, for whom see vol. 8:420. TBA described Elizabeth in his Diary as “perfectly sociable, and pleasant. Her countenance, if the true index of her heart, requires no other recommendation, to inspire every sentiment of approbation for her person” (Martha Babcock Amory, The Domestic and Artistic Life of John Singleton Copley, repr. edn., N.Y., 1969, p. 108, 443; M/TBA/2, 27 Oct., APM Reel 282).
4. Anna (Nancy) Jacoba Dumas, C. W. F. Dumas’ daughter, had married Abraham Veerman Senserff (1769–1804) in 1789. At one time, there had been some suggestion of a romantic relationship between her and JQA (Briefwisseling van Betje Wolff en Aagje Deken, ed. P. J. Buijnsters, 2 vols., Utrecht, 1987, 2:780–781; vol. 7:420).
5. Brittany, La Vendée, and Lyons had all been sites of significant opposition to the French revolutionary government as well as violent suppression of that opposition by the Jacobins. In Lyons, economic stagnation caused by the Revolution led to support for royalists and moderates in the government, and the National Convention eventually had to use its armies to retake control of the city by force in 1793. Thousands of suspected royalists were ultimately arrested and executed for opposing the Convention. Likewise, in La Vendée, in western France, a full-scale civil war broke out between revolutionaries and counterrevolutionaries that continued sporadically from 1793 to 1800. As with Lyons, the Convention used military force to suppress the rebellion, followed by mass executions including the deliberate drowning of barge loads of people in the Loire River (Cambridge Modern Hist., 8:339–341, 345–346, 351, 353–356, 379–380; Gregory Fremont-Barnes, ed., The Encyclopedia of the French Revolutionary and Napoleonic Wars: A Political, Social, and Military History, 3 vols., Santa Barbara, Calif., 2006).
Reports of the activities of the National Convention in Oct. 1794 first started appearing in American newspapers in early December but continued well into the next year; see, for instance, Philadelphia Independent Gazetteer, 3 Dec.; Massachusetts Spy, 17 Dec.; and Newport Mercury, 27 Jan. 1795.
6. Bertrand Barère de Vieuzac (1755–1841), a lawyer; Jean Marie Collot d’Herbois (1750–1796), an actor and playwright; and Jacques Nicolas Billaud-Varenne (1756–1819), another lawyer, were all French revolutionaries who served on the Committee of Public Safety as allies of Maximilien Robespierre. { 258 } After the Thermidorian reaction, Collot d’Herbois and Billaud-Varenne were both arrested and deported (Bosher, French Rev., p. xxv, xxvi, xxxi).
7. William Collins, “Ode to Liberty,” line 19.
8. JQA also wrote two lengthy letters to JA around this time, dated 9 and 17 Nov., respectively (both Adams Papers), outlining in greater detail JQA’s assessment of the political and military situation in the Netherlands. In the first, addressed from The Hague, he noted the weakness of the Dutch Army and its inability to retain competent officers in time of war, tensions between the Dutch and their British allies, and, of course, divisions within Dutch society between the Orangists and Patriots. His second letter, written from Amsterdam, reported on his audience with the stadholder and gave the latest updates on the progress of the French Army.
JQA, still self-conscious in his new role as minister resident, recognized that these letters to JA could serve in some fashion as a supplement to his official reports to the secretary of state. He informed his father on 9 Nov., “In my official correspondence with the Secretary of State, I feel a restraint owing perhaps to the natural aukwardness of novelty. The constant dread of committing some impropriety to the paper, prevents me from saying many things, which naturally flow from a confidential communication. If any facts or observations contained in my Letters to you, are in your opinion by any possible connection with the advantage of the public service, worthy of being known to the President, I have no doubt you will impart them to the Secretary of State. I have all possible confidence in him personally, and hope to acquire in time the habit of writing to him, with as much ease and freedom as is consistent with diplomatic docorum.”

Docno: ADMS-04-10-02-0160

Author: Adams, John
Recipient: Adams, Abigail
Date: 1794-11-14

John Adams to Abigail Adams

[salute] My Dearest Friend

By the Post of Yesterday I received your kind Letter of the 4th. of this month, and, by it, was relieved from a great Anxiety on Account of your health and that of Louisa. The News from the orchard is also very pleasant, I wish I could hear as good News from Hancocks Meadow. A Covering would keep it warm But I leave all to your better Judgment.
No senate Yet.—
Mrs Morris by her son has received “a Gallery of Fashion” i.e. Prints of Ladies Dresses in all the Months of the Spring & summer—1 The House goes on rapidly.— Speculation always ends in Extravagance— I love these People too well to be an uninterested Spectator, of what I fear is not Wisdom— But it is indeed properly Speaking as you’l say, none of my Business.
Mr M. declines the Election as Senator— Tenche Cox or Fitzsimmons or Bingham will it is said be chosen.—2
Our senate is under a Cloud— Two Members Frelinghuysen & Ross are with the Army vs the Rebels—3 Butler Bur & Bradley are absent no body knows why— Several are sick and there are several Vacancies &
Adieu
{ 259 } { 260 }
Col Smith is in Town— He breakfasted with me two days ago & dined with me & the Ps. yesterdy
RC (Adams Papers); endorsed: “Novbr 14 / 1794.”
1. Niklaus Wilhelm Innocentius von Heideloff’s The Gallery of Fashion, published in London from 1794 to 1803, was the first English magazine focused solely on fashion and contained hand-colored aquatint plates (Alice Mackrell, An Illustrated History of Fashion: 500 Years of Fashion Illustration, London, 1997, p. 100–102).
2. William Bingham was elected to the Senate from Pennsylvania in place of Robert Morris, who declined reelection (Biog. Dir. Cong.).
3. Sen. Frederick Frelinghuysen (1753–1804) of New Jersey served as a major general in the militia sent to put down the Whiskey Rebellion. Sen. James Ross of Pennsylvania acted as a federal commissioner appointed by George Washington to negotiate with the insurgents (Biog. Dir. Cong.; DAB).
JA further bemoaned the situation in the Senate to AA in another letter the next day, writing, “My Vote I believe will never be again given for an Adjournment of Congress to an earlier Day, than that which is designated by the Constitution, because I find that Gentlemen cannot conveniently leave their Plantations and Professions in Season to be here Sooner. a Fortnight has been already lost, and We have no Certainty of making a Senate on Monday” (Adams Papers).

Docno: ADMS-04-10-02-0161

Author: Copley, Susanna Clarke
Recipient: Adams, Abigail
Date: 1794-11-15

Susanna Clarke Copley to Abigail Adams

[salute] My dear Madam

I am happy in this opportuntity of thanking you for your kind favor by your sons:1 whom it gave me great pleasure to meet, and to be particularly infomed of your welfare; as well as that of the rest of your Family, which Blessings I most sincerely hope you and they may long enjoy, and that while you are called to Make so great a sacrafise as the parting with so dear connections will occation, that you may continue to receive the very pleaseing satisfaction of their being so useful to society—
I hope that the sattin which I have this opportunity of sending may be approved it is as near the colour as could be found with out haveing it made; but the Variation is now esteemed more fashionable here— the Vessels haveing left this place before the receipt of your Letter: I was fearful that the season when it was wanted might be passed before I had an opportunity of sending it: but am now happy to have heard from our Friend Mrs: Parker who is ever obliging that she could forward it to you, but not haveing seen her sence: am ignorant in what way but trust it will get safe to hand— there being some change left of the eight Guinas receivd from Mr: Adams I have laid it out for a Hankerchief, which as they are very Fashionable for the Head I hope will not come amiss—
{ 261 }
haveing but a few moments notice I can only beg yours, and Mr: Adams’s acceptance of the best regards of this Family, and / to beleive me to be Dear Madam / with great esteem / your sincere Friend
[signed] S: Copley
1. Not found.

Docno: ADMS-04-10-02-0162

Author: Adams, John
Recipient: Adams, Abigail
Date: 1794-11-17

John Adams to Abigail Adams

[salute] My dearest Friend

Yesterday I attended the Dedication of a Temple. The Presbyterian Congregation in Market Street, have taken down their old Meeting House, and erected a new one, in the Same Place, much larger higher, more light, airy and elegant. They assembled in it for the first time, Yesterday, when Dr Ewing preached in the Morning and Dr Blair in the Afternoon.1
I recollected with Pleasure upon this Occasion the Course of sermons delivered in Rotation by the Ministers of Boston in the new Church in Brattle street,2 and Philadelphia got nothing by the Comparison. Dr Blair however entertained Us with an elegant and Sublime Discourse, in which among other good Things he gave Tom Paine a hearty Reprobation.
I dined at Mr Otis’s: all well.— I hope to receive a Line to day. a Journal, or diurnal Register of farming would be very very refreshing, and entertaining. Oh the tedious solitude that awaits me, for 3 or 4 months, amidst the Noise, Smoke Wealth Luxury, Eloquence, Learning Wit, and Wisdom of this proud City and our venerable Congress.! To me, one Week of Domestic fœlicity & Rural Amusement, would be worth it all.
RC (Adams Papers); endorsed: “Novbr. 17th / 1794.”
1. The First Presbyterian Church of Philadelphia, whose original edifice on Market (High) Street dated from 1704, rebuilt its church in 1794. Rev. John Ewing (1732–1802), Princeton 1754, the minister of the church since 1759, was also the provost of the University of Pennsylvania (Francis Burke Brandt and Henry Volkmar Gummere, Byways and Boulevards in and about Historic Philadelphia, Phila., 1925, p. 54; DAB).
2. On 25 July 1773 the Brattle Street Church in Boston inaugurated its grand new building with a service including sermons by Rev. Samuel Cooper, its minister, and Rev. Charles Chauncy (Massachusetts Spy, 29 July).

Docno: ADMS-04-10-02-0163

Author: Adams, John
Recipient: Adams, Abigail
Date: 1794-11-18

John Adams to Abigail Adams

[salute] My Dearest Friend

I had just Sent off to the Poet office, my Letter in which I requested a Diary of Husbandry when I went to The Senate Chamber where I found your Letter of the 10th, which contained the very Thing I had asked for, very accurate & pleasing. I hope for a continuance of it, for nothing refreshes me like it, in the dull Solitude to which I am destined for four months.
A Senate was made to Day, by the Arrival of Col Burr, as fat as a Duck and as ruddy as a roost Cock. An hundred Thousand Pounds is a very wholesome Thing I believe, and I Suppose my manifold Infirmities are owing to my Poverty. I know not whether fame lies, on this occasion, but she begins to whisper that Burr has been very fortunate and Successful as well as Several others of Govr Clintons friends, by means that I will not explain till fame explains them more in detail.
These Simple Republicans are rewarded in this World for their Virtues, as well as admired for their Talents.
Tomorrow We shall have the Speech, which is to be delivered in the House of Representatives as there is some doubt of the Solidity of the Building to hold a Crowd in the Senate Chamber.1
They have built us no Gallery, from which neglect, Some conclude that the Soi-disant friends of the People are afraid that the Senate will appear to the People better friends than them Selves. The Debate on Mr Gallatin’s Election Seems to have abated the public Curiosity.
Mrs Cabot comes here, without Handmaiden or female Companion, in Six Days by the Stage Coach and is as alert as if she had done nothing.
I am glad you went to Haverhil to see our unfortunate afflicted Sister, but am anxious about that paltry River, lest it should bring again your intermittent.
Adieu
[signed] J. A.
RC (Adams Papers); endorsed: “Novbr / 18 1794.”
1. George Washington’s speech to both houses of Congress on 19 Nov. contained a detailed description of the Whiskey Rebellion and the government’s response. According to Washington, “In the four western counties of Pennsylvania, a prejudice, fostered and embittered by the artifice of men, who labored for an ascendancy over the will of others, by the guidance of their passions, produced symptoms of riot and violence.” Washington deemed these actions threats to “the very existence of social order” and a { 263 } violation of “the fundamental principles of our Constitution.” Still, he emphasized, he did not make the decision to use force to put down the rebellion lightly: “to array citizen against citizen, to publish the dishonor of such excesses, to encounter the expense, and other embarrassments, of so distant an expedition, were steps too delicate, too closely interwoven with many affecting considerations, to be lightly adopted.” Still, Washington used the rebellion as an opportunity to press Congress to pass laws regarding “the power of organizing, arming, and disciplining the militia; and thus providing, in the language of the Constitution, for calling them forth to execute the laws of the Union, suppress insurrection, and repel invasions” (Annals of Congress, 3d Cong., 2d sess., p. 787–792).
Both houses of Congress met in Congress Hall, formerly the county courthouse, at the corner of Sixth and Chestnut Streets in Philadelphia. The House of Representatives gathered on the first floor, and the Senate met on the second (Edward M. Riley, “The Independence Hall Group,” in Historic Philadelphia: From the Founding until the Early Nineteenth Century, Phila., 1953, p. 27–29).

Docno: ADMS-04-10-02-0164

Author: Adams, John
Recipient: Smith, Abigail Adams
Date: 1794-11-18

John Adams to Abigail Adams Smith

[salute] My Dear Daughter:

After a journey without any accident, I arrived here, in good health, the Friday night after I left you, and went into lodgings, which I did not find convenient, and the next morning removed to Francis’s hotel, where I have good accommodations, with company enough.
I forgot to thank you for your kind present of patriotic manufacture; but I own I am not, at my age, so great an enthusiast, as to wear with much pride, these coarse homely fabrics. I was once proud of an homespun camblet cloak, and used to go to meeting in it, at Dr. Cooper’s tasty Society; but I own I was not sorry when a thief, by stealing it, furnished me with an excuse for wearing it no more.1 Those times were very different from these. My Hartford present of Connecticut broadcloth, I could not long endure;2 and the New-York cotton is not yet made up. I am not the less obliged to you, however.
I have not yet heard whether your brother has returned from his visit to Steuben.
Colonel Smith is well. My love to William and John—give them a kiss for me, and present them with the blessing of their / Affectionate grandfather,
[signed] John Adams.
Your mamma, on the 10th of November, went to Haverhill, on a visit to your unfortunate and afflicted aunt.
MS not found. Printed from AA2, Jour. and Corr., 2:135–136; internal address: “To Mrs. Smith.”
{ 264 }
1. That is, when the Adamses attended Rev. Samuel Cooper’s Brattle Street Church in the early 1770s (vol. 1:157).
2. For JA’s gift of broadcloth from the merchants of Hartford, Conn., see vol. 8:332–333.

Docno: ADMS-04-10-02-0165

Author: Adams, Abigail
Recipient: Adams, John
Date: 1794-11-19

Abigail Adams to John Adams

[salute] my dearest Friend

I received by Saturdays post Yours of Novbr 8th, and was happy to find that you had got well to Philadelphia, and that there was a fair prospect of Peace on all sides. I was fearfull that they would make a senate before you reachd Philadelphia. Butlers conduct is much like the Man, unsteady and wavering. the Democrats have found a spirit in the Body of the people too enlightned, & too Sensible to their own happiness, and the welfare of the Country, to Second their views; in the manner they flatterd themselves. mr Amess Election has dampd their spirits here; and tho Jones upon the Stage in Portsmouth, in the Character of a servant who was puzling his wits for his masters support, Breaks out, that he knew not what to do now unless to invent Lies for the Boston Chronical. (Ben Still goes on lying.) this peice of wit, in the actor, produced a Roar of Laughter through the whole house, which was followd by a Clap in unison, and proved more fully than fifty essays the Estimation in which that paper is held.1 Tis said Genll Shepard is Elected in the Eastern district, instead of Lyman2
I made my visit last week to Haverhill and found my sister as well as I expected, tho at times Low in Spirits. She desired me to make her gratefull acknowledgments to you for the aid afforded to her son. without that assistance She should not have ventured to have continued him at Colledge—after the present Year. I am assured that the overseers will grant him every aid in their power, so that he will not be any great expence to his Mother for his Education. Captain Brooks says that the Tennant cannot live in the Farm House at Medford an other Year—that the House is now propd up with Timber & stakes, and that they are in danger every storm. I talkd with mrs shaw. she would sell her part, if she could vest the property in any real estate equally productive, but She has referd herself wholy to dr Tufts to do for her as he would act for a Daughter of his own in the same circumstances. She says, if she Builds she must morgage the interest—for a Number of Years, which under her present circumstances, she knows not how to do without. May Dr Tufts be collecting material this winter for Building.?3
{ 265 }
with regard to Home, the last week our people finishd the potatoes, carted Manure one day brought up three scow loads of seaweed making 18 loads and would have, got an other, but mrs Pope took it into her Head that bringing off the Sea weed, would leave the Farm exposed to be washd away with the sea, so our people lost a tide being obliged to remove to an other place to load the westerly winds & high tides had carried it off from our own ground. last Saturday & several days through the week we had severe weather, and considerable Snow. the Ice has made round the shoar so that at present no more sea weed can be got in that way. savil & Nightingale have cleard the shore hire. the latter brought his account yesterday 28. Load for which I payd him. Bracket & Savil have not yet brought theres. we have got home our new wheels. Splitting Hills, & getting out the remainder of the Manure will be the next object. the Winter however approaches fast. Shaw Suits me exactly— the 5 oclock hour does not find me in Bed the Sun is just now rising & promising a fine day—
to your ever affectionate
[signed] Abigail Adams
Mrs Brisler and Family are well and are to keep thanksgiving here tomorrow
RC (Adams Papers); endorsed: “Mrs Adams Nov. 19 / Ansd Decr. 1. 1794.”
1. Mr. Jones was one of the original actors of the Boston Theatre Company. In 1795 he relocated to Charleston, S.C., and became the manager of the City or Church Street Theatre there. Described as “matchless” for “humour and comic gesture,” he performed in Portland, Maine, on 3 Nov. 1794, which may be the event to which AA refers (George O. Seilhamer, History of the American Theatre: New Foundations, Phila., 1891, p. 280, 335–336; Portland, Maine, Eastern Herald, 3 Nov.).
2. AA was mistaken. William Lyman retained his seat in Congress; Gen. William Shepard (1737–1817), a major general in the Massachusetts militia and a member of the governor’s council, was not elected to Congress until 1797 (Biog. Dir. Cong.).
3. For the Medford, Mass., property owned jointly by AA and Elizabeth Smith Shaw, see vol. 5:247, 249. Its tenant was Benjamin Teal (vol. 8:201). For Capt. Thomas Brooks, see vol. 5:195; CFA, Diary, 3:70.

Docno: ADMS-04-10-02-0166

Author: Adams, John
Recipient: Adams, Abigail
Date: 1794-11-19

John Adams to Abigail Adams

[salute] My Dearest Friend

The Presidents Speech is so important to the Public that I know you will be anxious to See it as early as possible. When the Answers of the two Houses come to be debated We shall See whether there are any Apologists for Rebellion, in these Sanctuaries.1
As Mr Edwards of Kentucky appeared in Senate to Day, We can do Business if one Member should be Sick, but it will be very { 266 } inconvenient to have so small a Majority. Mr Potts of Maryland and Mr Taylor of Virginia have resigned.2 The Senate Seems really to be too Small a Body for So important a Branch of the Legislature of so great a People.
I feel, where I am, the Want of the society of Mr Otis’s Family, but much more that of my own. I pore upon my Family at Quincy, my Children in Europe, and my Children and Granchildren in New York, till I am Melancholly and wish myself a private Man. That event however would not relieve me, for my Thoughts would be at the Hague and at N. York if I was with you at Quincy. Your Meditations cannot be more chearful than mine and your Visit to our afflicted sister will not I fear brighten your Views or soften your Anxiety. I hope We shall be Supported. But there is no Plan, that occurs to me that can relieve Us from our solicitude. We must repose ourselves upon those Principles in which We were educated and which I hope We have never renounced nor relinquished.
I would resign my office and remain with you, Or I would bring you next Winter with me but either of these Plans, the Publick out of the Question, would increase our Difficulties perhaps rather than lessen them. This Climate is Disease to me, and I greatly fear would be worse to you, in the present State of your Health. Mrs Jay, poor Lady is more distressed than We are.
I pray you to take Care of your Health and of Louisa’s too. she is a good Girl: but I Sometimes wish she would run about a little more if it was even to look at the young Men.
Adieu
[signed] J. A
1. For the Senate’s and House’s responses, see JA to AA, 23 Nov., and note 1, and JA to AA, 1 Dec., and note 1, respectively, both below.
2. John Taylor of Caroline resigned on 11 May and was replaced as a Virginia senator by Henry Tazewell, who did not arrive until 29 December. Richard Potts of Maryland apparently considered resigning but ultimately retained his Senate seat until Oct. 1796 (Biog. Dir. Cong.; DAB).

Docno: ADMS-04-10-02-0167

Author: Adams, John Quincy
Recipient: Adams, Charles
Date: 1794-11-20

John Quincy Adams to Charles Adams

[salute] My dear Brother.

Upon my leaving America, your Father gave me an order upon Messrs W. & J Willink for five obligations on a Loan of the United States, for a thousand Guilders each, bearing an interest of five per cent. and upon which one years interest will be due, on the first of { 267 } June next, which he directed me to hold in trust for your use, and subject to your orders. This instruction has been complied with and in conformity to his further commands, I hereby inform you that I am in possession of the obligations numbered 3003. 3004, 3005, 3009, 3010. in trust for you, and subject to any orders you may think proper to give me for their disposal, or that of the annual interest, accruing from them.
I suppose that the giver of this very handsome present, who has been equally liberal to his other sons, has mentioned the circumstance to you, and given you his advice as to the disposition of the property. He appeared to me desirous that you Should keep the obligations, and receive the interest by draughts upon me, or orders to me annually to lay out the arising interest in such books or other articles as you may have occasion for.
You will however determine for yourself—and if your intention should be to draw the Capital out of its present situation, you can order me to sell the obligations, and you may then draw Bills upon me for the proceeds. They are at this moment one or two pr cent below par. Whatever your Commands upon the subject may be, they shall be faithfully executed by / your affectionate Brother.
LbC in TBA’s hand (Adams Papers); internal address: “Mr Charles Adams / New York”; APM Reel 126.

Docno: ADMS-04-10-02-0168

Author: Adams, John Quincy
Recipient: Smith, Abigail Adams
Date: 1794-11-20

John Quincy Adams to Abigail Adams Smith

[salute] My dear Sister.

About a month after I last took my leave of you in New York, I sailed from Boston, and after a passage of twenty eight days landed at Deal in England. We spent a fortnight in London, where we saw several of your friends who enquired particularly after you: and have now been about three weeks in this Country, principally at the Hague.
It is at a very critical and dangerous period for this Country, that we have arrived. The french armies are advancing rapidly into the Heart of the Country. The nation internally is divided into parties extremely inveterate against each other. Their troops are dispirited; their allies troublesome, their fortresses incapable of defence, and their present apparent resources, almost reduced to nothing.
But the appearance of the Country is remarkably quiet; and except as a topic of conversation, which frequently occurs, you would { 268 } scarcely imagine the United Netherlands to be in a State of War. Even the dread of conquest is very much abated by the treatment experienced in the towns already taken; and the people in general here appear to be rather indifferent as to the event of the War, provided they can save their money. There is little apprehension of personal danger to any body, particularly at the Hague; there will be certainly none for us.
Please to remember my best regards to the Coll: and my respects to Mrs: Smith, and her family. Love to your children, and tell William and John they must not forget me. Our Brother Thomas is well and writes you by this opportunity.1 His company has been the greatest alleviation to the tediousness both of the voyage, and of my residence here.
I am anxiously desirous to hear from my friends in America, among whom there is none whose welfare, more than your’s is at the heart of your ever affectionate brother
[signed] John Q. Adams.
RC (Adams Papers); addressed: “Mrs: A. Smith. / New-York.”; internal address: “Mrs: W. S. Smith. New-York.”; docketed: “Mrs Smith N. Y.”; filmed at 28 Nov. 1794. LbC (Adams Papers); APM Reel 126.
1. Not found.

Docno: ADMS-04-10-02-0169

Author: Adams, Abigail
Recipient: Adams, John
Date: 1794-11-23

Abigail Adams to John Adams

[salute] My dearest Friend

I received yours of Novbr. 9th 11th 12 & 14th.1 you are made easy respecting the Election of mr Ames tho I believe that many of the Electors would not bear a strict scrutiny any more than Jarvis’s Party. I fear that in one sense evil was done, that good might come of it. there was no other way of Parrying the stroke, but making use of similar weapons and as Hudibrass has it, “to Combat evil, tis Lawfull to employ the devil.”2
Where is mr Strong?3 if I did not see some Good Mens Names amongst the absent, I should suppose that it was a concerted measure amongst the Antifeds to prevent Congress from proceeding to Buisness. they testify their Chagrine by [th]eir disinclination to attend. tis said Burr, is Electionering. I hope the next accounts will bring us News of a Senate & the Presidents Speach, which is impatiently lookd for.
Clinton I presume did not marry his daughter to Genett to obtain popularity. I should suppose it would be an injury to him.
{ 269 }
Mr Cranch writes his Mother how highly he was gratified by his visit with you to the President. I am grieved for him. his loss in cloaths is considerable, but his Books were of much more value and concequence to him.4 Mr Daltons projects at his time of Life allways appeard wild to me. to be the first in a village, is, preferable to the second in Rome and, is one of the first Maxims in the Catalogue of Ambition5 this Principal Rears the Morris Palace, which in splendor is to out shine the Bingham House, and the Gallery of pretty fashions will find employment for the Ladies, but not till the Two Young Ladies come forth as Models—for to be first, is the Charm!
as your Friend is not endowd with the Means, tho you have sometimes chargd her with the inclination of following a Lead, she can at least boast that she is contented with what is allotted her, and would rather aim at the Character given by Solomen, by rising whilst it is yet Night, and giving meat to her Household & a portion to her Maidens—6
The Buisness performd since I wrote last, is that of carting 30 load of Manure upon the Hill getting up some sea weed for Banking houses—and finishing Splitting Hills upon this place— Thanksgiving Day & a visit To Abington by the two shaws, has broken the week— 70 load of Sea weed have been spread upon the clover & orchard. the meddow shall be attended to, if there is time after Splitting Hills at the other place.
I have not made any use of the order. the Time draws nigh when you can transmit me what I have occasion for if Savil calls before—I will borrow of the dr my Tennants quarters will be up in december. be so good as to tell Brisler to send me a couple of Barrels flower. 9 dollors is the price here as to Rye flower, I will wait till Spring it may fall then but I question it. not a Bushel of Rye has been at market for some weeks I am told by people who want. 9 shillings pr Bushel was the last price— Mr Cranch Says if you will subscribe for Fennos papers for him, as post Master, they shall come to me free of postage—
present me affectionatly to all inquiring Friends—and be assured I am as ever / Your
[signed] A Adams
RC (Adams Papers); addressed: “To / The Vice President of The / United States / Philadelphia”; endorsed: “Mrs Adams Nov 23. / ansd Decr. 2. 1794.” Some loss of text where the seal was removed.
1. No letter from JA to AA of the 12th has been found; she possibly refers to his letter of 13 Nov. (Adams Papers), a brief note in which JA commented on general news of John Jay’s mission in Britain and JA’s own social activities. The other letters are above.
{ 270 }
2. Matthew Prior, “Hans Carvel,” lines 69–70.
3. Caleb Strong first attended the Senate on 28 Nov. (Annals of Congress, 3d Cong., 2d sess., p. 797).
4. William Cranch reported to his mother on 12 Nov. that “The Disappointment I have met with in losing all my books, papers, and the trunk of cloaths I sent from Haverhill, is very great, and is not a very good out-set.” The ship on which he had placed them first ran aground at the entrance to the Chesapeake, then caught fire, destroying all of its contents (MHi:Christopher P. Cranch Papers, Box 1).
5. Tristram Dalton, after visiting Washington, D.C., in May 1794, decided to sell his lands in New England and invest heavily in lumber for building homes and real estate in Washington. He lost most of his personal property in the same shipwreck that destroyed William Cranch’s possessions (see note 4, above), and his investments ultimately failed, leaving him in poverty in Georgetown, D.C., by the late 1790s (Sibley’s Harvard Graduates, 13:577).
6. Proverbs, 31:15.

Docno: ADMS-04-10-02-0170

Author: Adams, John
Recipient: Adams, Abigail
Date: 1794-11-23

John Adams to Abigail Adams

[salute] My dearest Friend

It is a common Observation of Old People, that as they advance in Life time appears to run off faster, and the Years grow shorter. I cannot, I am Sure, Say the Same of the time which has passed of late. I took Possession of this Chamber on the 8th. of this Month, and the time has seemed at least as long to me as any fifteen days of my whole Life. tedious days! and lonesome nights! I am weary of Ye!
Inclosed is the Address of the Senate, and the Presidents Reply.1 You will be pleased with both, but wry faces and shril Voices enough will be Seen & heard in the House, the Cities, and in some Places in the Country.
What do you make of the Intelligence from France? They seem to be weary of Clubbs, but as yet unable to do without them. The Explosion of their Powder Works and Men, seems as desperate as dreadful.—2 dreadful, Awful, Revenge, I expect will be practiced in a thousand Ways: and as Revenge excites Revenge, when will it Stop! They Seem at present to be unable to confine their <friends> Ennemies, or to set them at Liberty. Sin and Death seem to have deserted the Place where Milton saw them and taken their Abode in Paris.
I did not expect any Letter from you last Week, because of your Visit to Haverhill: and I was not disappointed. but If I should not receive one this Week I shall be mortified.
The Spirit in the two houses, has hitherto appeared well disposed to support the Government: but whether the House will venture to censure a great Number of their Constituents, so freely as the President and Senate have done I know not. Mr Madison & Mr { 271 } Scott upon the Committee would not admit the Clause into their Report: and whether The House will insert it is not yet certain.3
An Army of 15,000 militia so easily raised from 4 states only to go upon such an Enterprize, ought to be a terrible Phænomenon to antifœderal Citizens as well as to insolent Britains. If our old stepmother continues to provoke Us, till our Patience is exhausted, she will Soon see Mischief to her Dominions in America. But they will cost Us infinitely more than they are worth.
Adieu
[signed] J. A.
RC (Adams Papers); endorsed: “Novbr 23.”
1. On 22 Nov. the Senate delivered its response to George Washington’s address to Congress. The Senate expressed its “affectionate approbation” for the measures Washington had used to suppress “the licentious and open resistance to the laws in the Western counties of Pennsylvania” and “the wisdom and decision with which you arrayed the militia, to execute the public will.” Washington, in turn, thanked the Senate for its “zealous and steadfast co-operation … in the maintenance of Government” (Annals of Congress, 3d Cong., 2d sess., p. 794–796). The enclosure has not been found but was presumably the Philadelphia Gazette, 22 Nov., the only newspaper to have printed these items by this date.
2. On 31 Aug. (An. II, 14 fructidor) an explosion took place at France’s main gunpowder factory in Grenelle. The explosion killed hundreds of workers and was apparently so violent that it shattered windows for miles around. Prior to this incident, the Grenelle factory, which had developed a new method for manufacturing powder, turned out some 30,000 pounds a day (Philadelphia Gazette, 13 Nov.; Cambridge Modern Hist., 8:433).
3. Thomas Scott (1739–1796), a lawyer from western Pennsylvania, served in Congress from 1789 to 1791 and again from 1793 to 1795 (Biog. Dir. Cong.). He and James Madison were both on the committee to draft a response to Washington’s address, for which see JA to AA, 1 Dec., and note 1, below.

Docno: ADMS-04-10-02-0171

Author: Adams, John
Recipient: Adams, Charles
Date: 1794-11-23

John Adams to Charles Adams

[salute] Dear Sir

Although you have not informed me, of the Result of your Examination at Albany, I shall venture to address this Letter to a Councillor at Law.
You will see by your public Papers tomorrow The Address of the Senate to the President in Answer to his Speech, and his Reply.1 I wish to know the Sensations and Reflections, both of one Party and the other in New York upon both.
I have Suffered Some Anxiety on your Account least you should be in Want of the Necessary. I should have Sent you Some before now if I had possessed any: but really I have been & am still confoundedly pinched. Within the two first Weeks of December I shall send you, enough for present Use, if I can get any for myself. If the House should trifle with their Appropriation Bill as they have { 272 } sometimes done, I shall be puzzled for Sometime: but you may depend upon its coming in the Course of the Winter.
I should be glad to hear from you as often as your Affairs will permit you to write to your / Affectionate
[signed] John Adams
RC (MHi:Seymour Coll.); internal address: “Charles Adams Esqr.”
1. The Senate’s reply to George Washington’s address to Congress and Washington’s response were first published in New York in the American Minerva and the Diary, 25 November.

Docno: ADMS-04-10-02-0172

Author: Adams, John Quincy
Recipient: Adams, Charles
Date: 1794-11-24

John Quincy Adams to Charles Adams

[salute] My dear Brother

I have already written you respecting the private business upon which I was commissioned by your father, and I enclose a duplicate of that Letter, to meet the case of miscarriage, that may happen to the original.1 But you will expect, and indeed are entitled to some more lines from me, though I have nothing interesting to say to you, except that we are well, and very anxious to hear the same good news from you.
Thomas tells me he has written you a long letter;2 I presume therefore he has related to you the most prominent particulars of our passage & adventures, from the time we left Boston until our arrival here. He has doubtless told you of our hair-breadth scapes, not in the imminent deadly breach, but from the treachery of a faithless bottom on the water, and from the ingenious contrivances of English Thieves on the land; and you know by this time, or will before this reaches you, that our voyage was short & tedious, pleasant & uncomfortable, which indeed is the greatest eulogium that can be past upon the most favorable passage across the Atlantic, that I ever made. It will be equally well known to you that we whirled round in the sling of London City for one fortnight, and then came from Harwich with a Captain, who before we sailed had preceded us by more than half the way, and a huddle of Passengers of all Nations, Countries and Languages, as if a new Babel had been building in England, and the workmen were all going home together. Of all these facts it is therefore unnecessary for me to repeat a detail which has already been made you, and I shall say nothing of them.
As to political intelligence you will no doubt expect much of that under an idea that we are now in the very center of information. { 273 } The truth is however that we have but little, and that is almost exclusively confined to the state of this Country itself in the part invaded by the French armies. In conformity to our engagement before we left America, we shall regularly send you the Leyden Gazette, which will give you most of the information that we could write. We Shall endeavor always to send it you as early as possible, and we earnestly urge you to make the same efforts in return. You will recollect, that personally your information to us, is of great importance, that the essence of valuable intelligence is its early reception, and that our channels of conveyance for American news, are much fewer in number & narrower in extent, than those that flow towards you; We ask not however for more punctuality than we shall shew.
I suppose you think we are at this moment swiming in the water, or under the command of Citoyen Pichegru, and I have no doubt but Amsterdam has been taken five times at least before this present hour, in the name of the French Republic, by all the Newspapers in the United States.3 This is not yet the case however, but if there is any thing in human probability, it will be within two months. Peace upon such terms as the French Republic shall dictate or the immediate interposition of more than human power, are the only things that can arrest the progress of the republican armies short of Amsterdam. In the mean time, we are as quiet and peaceable as we could be in profound peace. Excepting the addition of a few Soldiers, every thing looks exactly as it did thirteen years ago, and the inhabitants of the City, who you know were never very cordial to the cause of their present rulers, shrug their shoulders in the spirit of the gentleman in Phædrus who enquires, “num feram binas clitellas?4
In the article of literature, this is the worst place where I could possibly be situated to give you any thing worthy of your attention. France is the only source from which any novelty of merit can proceed, for the public entertainment or instruction here, and all communication with her is interrupted. Old French publications are cheap enough at the present time, for obvious reasons. The circumstances are something like those in the dialogue between Falstaff and Prince Henry, when Land was as cheap as stinking Mackrel, and Maiden-heads to be bought like Hob-nails, by the hundred.5
This letter you see is not very Diplomatic; but it will serve my turn much better, if it proves to you, that I am with unabated affection your friend / and Brother.
{ 274 }
LbC in TBA’s hand (Adams Papers); internal address: “Charles Adams Esqr: New York.”; APM Reel 126.
1. Of 20 Nov., above. Neither the RC nor the Dupl has been found; only the LbC is extant.
2. Not found.
3. Gen. Charles Pichegru (1761–1804) was the head of the French Army of the Rhine (Hoefer, Nouv. biog. générale). Newspapers throughout the United States were printing reports—often contradictory—regarding the activities of the French Army and its impending invasion of Amsterdam as well as the Dutch response. Earlier in the fall, one widely circulated newspaper item reported that “the Dutch apprehensive of being overrun by the numerous battalions, had opened the Dykes and overflowed the low countries.” By as early as 8 Nov. 1794, one Philadelphia newspaper noted that Pichegru “now threatens Amsterdam,” while on 25 Nov. a Stockbridge, Mass., newspaper indicated that “it was strongly reported … that Amsterdam was taken by the French.” By December, however, new reports were suggesting only that the capture of Amsterdam was imminent (New York American Minerva, 26 Sept.; Philadelphia Gazette, 8 Nov.; Stockbridge, Mass., Western Star, 25 Nov.; Portsmouth, N.H., Oracle of the Day, 20 Dec.).
4. Probably a misquoting of the final line from Phaedrus’ fable “The Ass and the Shepherd”: “When princes fall into disaster, / The people do but change their master. / A Shepherd, as he fed his Ass, / Saw soldiers at a distance pass, / And thus his animal address’d: / ‘’Tis time to fly; come, come, make haste!’ / The patient beast says, ‘Think you, pray, / Two loads upon me they will lay?’ / The man says ‘No.’—‘Then what care I! / All one to me to stay or fly.’” (Brooke Boothby, Fables and Satires, 2 vols., Edinburgh, 1809, 1:17).
5. Shakespeare, King Henry the Fourth, Part I, Act II, scene iv, lines 394–399.

Docno: ADMS-04-10-02-0173

Author: Adams, Abigail
Recipient: Adams, John Quincy
Date: 1794-11-26

Abigail Adams to John Quincy Adams

[salute] my dear son,

This day compleats Ten weeks, since you sailed and I have had no opportunity before this, by Captain Scott, of writing to you, unless by way of Amsterdam, where I have little hope of finding you. The Arms of France have proved so powerfull, and their victorys have been so rapid, that I should not be surprized to learn, that they had renderd your commission Nul & void, by overturning the Republick, and Demolishing the Government of the Country to which you are accreditted; in that case, you will remain where you are, untill further orders.
You will be pleased to hear, as you will no doubt, from various quarters, that the Insurgency is suppressd in Pennsylvania. the determind spirit of the people Soon formed too powerfull an Army for them to make any Head against. they Soon Saw and felt, that they must submit. Numbers of them have been taken, and confined for trial.
Mr Findley in an interveiw with the President, told him, that the opposition of the people in the Rebellious Counties, was not a resistance to the Excise, or any other particular measure of Government, but an universal opposition to all Law, all Government, and all { 275 } Magistracy, and that rather than go through such an other Scene, as he had witnessed amongst them he should wish to quit the stage of Life. this from Findlay; looks as if he had been compeld to alter some of his sentiments by sad experience, and will I hope have a good effect upon a Man of real good Sense, and I hope Heart.
Mr Smith of S C. is Re Elected, by a large Majority. Mr Ames Election was carried with a firmness and Resolution which abashed all Jacobinism. if the Electors would bear a Scrutiny upon the Side of his opponent, they certainly would upon his. if any credit was to be given to the Chronical, we Should believe that Ames’s party had adopted the sentiment of Hudibrass,

“To combat Evil, tis Lawfull to employ the devil”

But he remains in full pay of the other Party, and can transform assignatts into Crowns or even Guineys.
The New Elections are generally Federal and our Government has taken deeper and firmer Root, for the storms and tempests which have assaild it.
Generall Waynes victory over the Savages has had a happy effect upon our Tawnny Neighbours and the Aspect of our Country, is Peace and Plenty. the view is delightfull, and the more so when contrasted with the desolation and carnage which overspread a great proportion of the civilized world.
I heard this week from your Father and your Brother and sister,1 all of whom were well. they will undoubtedly write to you, as vessels are going from thence
we have flatterd ourselves that you had a prosperous voyage, as the Winds from shore were favourable for a long time. I hope you will not omit any opportunity of writing to her whose happiness is so intimately blended with your prosperity, and who at all times is your / ever affectionate Mother
[signed] Abigail Adams
1. The letters from AA2 and CA to AA have not been found.

Docno: ADMS-04-10-02-0174

Author: Adams, John
Recipient: Adams, Abigail
Date: 1794-11-26

John Adams to Abigail Adams

[salute] My Dearest Friend

The Pamphlet inclosed may be called “The most astonishing Concentration of Jacobitical Malevolence that ever Scottish Spite exhibited.” I have read it however with Interest and Avidity. It is not badly { 276 } written— It has, no doubt, too much foundation in Truth. It has little of the Wit and none of the humour of Tom Pain, but has more than his Malice & Revenge. It is sometimes amusing to contemplate Sheer Malignity, especially when it seems not to have any Power to do harm. The Writer is a “Callender” now in this City employed as a Writer of Essays and Paragraphs for his Newspaper by Andrew Brown. We shall soon see the offspring of his Genius applied to Men & Measures in America. very soon will he be a Member of the Democratical society, as I foresee. This Country is to be the Asylum of all the discontented, turbulent, profligate and Desperate from all Parts of Europe and Democratical societies are to raise them to fame, Popularity, Station & Power. How long the People will countenance this I know not. Jefferson it seems is to give the first Passport to these Incendiaries. Malignity seemed to have Seized upon that Mans mind as deeply as upon Paines & Callenders.1

I expect a Letter tomorrow

The President and Senate have fixed a Stigma on certain Anarchical societies. The House will do the same though perhaps in feebler terms.2 No Party No Man in either house has justified them—None has even excused them. some have imprudently admitted their Legality. People have a right to meet & consider of Laws express their Opinions and feelings, for the Purpose of petitioning the Legislature for Repeals Or Amendments. But it is not lawful to meet to frame & publish Censures upon Laws, and Libels upon Men or Measures. If when assembled they do an unlawful Act Their Assembly is adjudged to unlawful from the Beginning. The Legality of the Meeting depends upon the Legality of their Conduct. It is incautious and improvident therefore to acknowledge their Legality, without Exceptions Qualifications & limitations as some have done who are no friends to them.
Adieu
My Waggish Friend Fitch of Jamaica applies to me from the Rolliad, or Probationary Odes.

“There Cornwall Sits, and oh unhappy fate!

Must sit forever, through the long Debate;

Painful Pre-eminence! he hears, tis true,

Fox, North and Burke—but hears, sir Joseph too.

Like Sad Prometheus fasten’d to his Rock

In vain he looks for Pity to the Clock;

In vain the Effects of Strengthening Porter tries

{ 277 }

And nods to Bellamy for fresh Supplies

While Vulture like the dire Mahon appears

And far more Savage, rends his suffering Ears.

With Mulgrave—at whose Scream, in wild surprize

The Speechless Speaker lifts his drowsy Eyes.”3

RC (Adams Papers); endorsed: “Novbr / 26 1794.”
1. The pamphlet has not been found but was presumably James ThompsonThomson Callender’s The Political Progress of Britain, Edinburgh, 1792, an attack on the British government. Callender (1758–1803) was indicted for sedition in 1793 for the pamphlet but fled to the United States. There he found support from Thomas Jefferson and other Democratic-Republican politicians, which allowed him to continue as a political writer. He famously attacked JA in The Prospect before Us, 3 vols. in 1, Richmond, Va., 1800–1801, secretly sponsored by Jefferson. Andrew Brown (1744?–1797) was the publisher of the Philadelphia Gazette (DAB;Stewart, Opposition Press, p. 618).
2. Both George Washington in his address to Congress and the Senate in their reply condemned “self-created societies” for helping to foment the Whiskey Rebellion. The House, in their reply, made no direct reference to such societies, though they debated the topic at length in preparing their response and did in the end agree to language condemning actions “either by individuals or combinations of men … to foment the flagrant outrage which has been committed on the laws” (Annals of Congress, 3d Cong., 2d sess., p. 788, 794, 899–905, 906–949).
3. The first ten lines come from “Criticisms on the Rolliad, Part the First,” in The Rolliad, in Two Parts; Probationary Odes for the Laureatship; and Political Ecologues, 21st edn., London, 1799, No. IX; the last two from “Jekyll,” in the same, lines 25–26.

Docno: ADMS-04-10-02-0175

Author: Cranch, Joseph
Recipient: Adams, John
Date: 1794-11-27

Joseph Cranch to John Adams

[salute] Sir

I will not add to my offence by troubling you with a long apology for this intrusion on your Valuable time— Suffice it to Say,—that encoraged by the Condesending manner in which you listen’d to my small affairs (interesting however to me in the extreem) I am embolden’d to beg your interest with the General in my behalf, so far as you can do it consistant with your princeples of Propriety1 a word perhaps from you, thrown in apparently by accident may have great effect.— I had an intervieu with the Secretary at War, after I had the honor of seeing you— after considerable conversation on the Subject, in which he Seem’d doubtful and hesitating—about making an exchange with the person now at Springfield— as I was taking leave he Said—“you would wish an appointment”?— Certainly Sir— “and you prefer Springfield to any other Place[?”]
On my answering in the affirmative—he Said—“you had best write and I will answer you immediately.”—
In compliance with this enjunction, I have wrote by the Same Post which convays this.— and Confess I see not how he can get { 278 } over the matter without complying with my request; esspecially when he Sees the extracts which I have taken from letters wrote as far back as the years—: 87 &—89—wherin he Says
“Persuaded as I am of your industry Skill and integrity, I Shall be extreamly glad to make a permanent arangement to continue you in the publick Service”.— again he Says—
The new Government will require time before it can obtain so much Vigor as to make the necessary arangements of its arsinals in order to find constant employment for you, whenever this event Shall happen, I Shall, as far as I may be concerned, be glad to give you employment, being confident of your ability and faithfulness to Serve the Publick Permit me Sir to breathe a most fervent wish for the happiness of you and yours—and to Subscribe my Self / your greatly obligd / and most Humble Servt
[signed] Joseph Cranch
RC (Adams Papers); internal address: “The Honble. John Adams Esqr.” Some loss of text where the seal was removed.
1. JA, spurred on largely by AA, had previously assisted Joseph Cranch in contacting Henry Knox regarding employment as a gunsmith; see vol. 8:145–146, 148; 9:21–22, 26, 34, 40, 48–49, 50.

Docno: ADMS-04-10-02-0176

Author: Adams, Abigail
Recipient: Adams, John
Date: 1794-11-30

Abigail Adams to John Adams

[salute] my dearest Friend

I have to acknowledg the receipt of Several Letters from you, together with Demourier Memoirs; for which accept my thanks;1 I wish to hear from you, & to learn something of the Buisy world as often as your Time will permit, but in return I have only to relate to you the Small occurrencies which my Family and Farm afford. Not a son to visit me now, and enliven by his presence once a week or fortnight, a long Winter Evening, and to detail to me what is passing in the more active scenes of Life. Mary is gone home,2 & Julias sportive gambols are the enliveners of some solitary moments when unoccupied with the cares of my Family; and feeling anxious to hear from my Children, I have just finishd a Letter to each of them to go by captain Scott.3 I hope you will write to them as I see several vessels up to go from Philadelphia;.
The buisness of the week past, has been plowing carting sea weed and stones. two of my Hands will leave me in the course of the present week as their time expires— they have been very usefull in going with the scow for sea weed. the weather now grows too Boisterous { 279 } to make further use of it, this season. I am in hopes if the season permitts to compleat filling the yards from the shore, but I have made no provision for my fireside yet, but from day to day, I have been so desirious to improve all the open weather for the other buisness.—
Mr Pratt has informd mr Cranch that he means to sell his pew.4 he bid it of at 42 pounds. he laid out in finishing it between 4 & 5 pounds he would sell it for 46— mr Cranch desired me to let you know it. he will not part with it till he hears from you
Dr Tufts desires me to get mr Brisler to inquire the price of clover seed.
The President Speach I hear is come I have not seen it. the weather was bad yesterday, and my Neighbours did not get their paper
adieu most / affectionatly Yours—
[signed] Abigail Adams
just as I was folding my letter, to close it, yours of the 19 Novbr was brought me. I know our feelings are often in unison, and I fear you would think me in low spirits. my spirits tho sometimes low, from particular causes, are generally on a uniform key. I am sorry you are deprived of mrs otis & Familys Society— I know it amused you. three Months will soon slide away when I hope we shall meet again. I shall inclose the Presidents speach to our son thanks for the Book—
RC (Adams Papers); addressed by Louisa Catharine Smith: “The Vice President of the United States / Philadelphia.”; endorsed: “Mrs Adams Nov. 30 / ansd. Decr 8. 1794”; notation: “N.B. This date should be 1794.”
1. On 15 Nov. JA wrote to AA complaining of the slow start to the congressional session; he also enclosed Charles François Du Périer Dumouriez’s Memoirs of General Dumourier, 2 vols. in 1, Phila., 1794, Evans, No. 26918. The book is in JA’s library at MB (Adams Papers; Catalogue of JA’s Library).
2. That is, Mary Smith, the daughter of Catharine Louisa and William Smith Jr. She had lived with the Cranches for a number of years and was presumably returning to her mother’s home in Lincoln (AA to JQA, 15 June 1797, Adams Papers).
3. AA to JQA, 26 Nov., above, and AA to TBA, 30 Nov., below.
4. Thomas Pratt (ca. 1747–1811), a Revolutionary War soldier and Quincy housewright, sold his pew in the Quincy Meeting House to JA on 3 Jan. 1795 for £46 (Adams Papers, Wills and Deeds; Sprague, Braintree Families).

Docno: ADMS-04-10-02-0177

Author: Adams, Abigail
Recipient: Adams, Thomas Boylston
Date: 1794-11-30

Abigail Adams to Thomas Boylston Adams

[salute] my dear Thomas.

Well my Dear Son, how did the watery world agree with you? I hope it was propitious to your passage, and that thirty or 40 days, at { 280 } furthest Landed you safe in a Country, for which I have ever Since my residence in it, entertaind a fondness and partiality.
As you are a New Traveller I expect from your pen; many judicious observations, but what will be most valuable to me, will be the News of your safe arrival, your Health and happiness.
There have been some Changes in the political World since you left us. Insurgency and Jacobinism droop their Heads. the Democratick Clubs sink into insignificance, or to keep themselves from total contempt come forward and approve the measures persued by Government, especially in the suppression of the late Rebellion, that under that cloak they may not be considerd as the Authors of it. The destruction of Robertspears whom they considerd as the great Champion for Liberty and equality, and the odium cast upon his Memory; has had no small share in depressing the Enemies of Government; There is at present a prospect of more quiet amongst ourselves than the last year afforded
Congress have been in session ever Since the 1 Monday of this Month, but have not been able to make a senate till the 19th I will inclose to you the Presidents Speach if I can obtain it. Genett has really, and truly married Cornelia Clinton, tis reported for political purposes—against the Govenours consent. he thinks I presume that it would injure his Election. I wish him joy with a connection which is held in ——— by every honest mind.
Charity Smith married to mr shaw Brother to the late Consul. Your Friend and Cousin William Cranch gone to the City of washington there to reside, and transact buisness for mr Greenleaf—
I would not damp the begining of my Letter, by informing you of the suden death of your uncle Shaw— on the Night of the 9th of Sep’br having preachd through the whole day and not having made any complaint, he went well to bed. when your Aunt wakd in the morning, she spoke to him. he did not answer she tried to rouse him, but tho he Breathd, he was past recovery, nor would he Blead when a vein was opend. the shock was dreadfull to us all, to her feeble constitution more than I thought she could Sustain, but her fortitude, her truly Christian Deportment exhibited itself in its full lusture, and she conducted herself with that firmness and dignity which did honour to herself to her Family, and to that Being who saw fit to call her to such a trial.
The people Buried him and put the Family into mourning—and she is to remain in the House untill an other Minister Setles. Her { 281 } circumstances are difficult, tho mr shaw was not in Debt, yet the poor sallery of a Minister can barely give him a living. Her Friends will enable her to carry her Son through Colledge. I know both you and your Brother will sincerly sympathize with her.
I begin to hope soon to hear from you. Louissa desires to be kindly Rememberd so do all your Quincy Friends—and Polly requests me to give information for her that Ten long weeks she has been constant, and as a proof asks me to inclose a Letter.1
adieu Heaven preserve the Lives and Health of both my dear sons and grant me the happiness of seeing them again in their Native Land Your ever affectionate Mother
[signed] A Adams
1. The letter has not been found but was presumably from Polly Doble Howard to Tilly Whitcomb, TBA and JQA’s servant, with whom Howard had an informal engagement. The couple eventually broke off the engagement, and Howard married Jonathan Baxter Jr. in June 1797 (Sprague, Braintree Families; AA to TBA, 21 Feb. 1797, Adams Papers).

Docno: ADMS-04-10-02-0178

Author: Adams, John
Recipient: Adams, Abigail
Date: 1794-12-01

John Adams to Abigail Adams

[salute] My Dearest Friend

Your Letter of the 19th of Nov. gave me, in addition to the ordinary Satisfaction I receive from your Letters, the Pleasure of knowing that your Visit to Haverhill, the damp Vapour of whose River I dreaded, had not injured your health.
You ask me, if Dr Tufts may be collecting Materials, this Winter for Building on the Medford farm? I fear it will be a very costly Undertaking considering the Extravagant Prices of every Thing, and it will keep me Streightened and poor for a long time. I expect the Expence of Building will be 300£, the Interest of which is Eighteen Pounds a Year near half the annual Rent of the whole Estate. I am willing to sell the whole for what it will fetch or to buy the whole at any reasonable Rate. But is it desired of me to build the whole House at my own Expence, when the half only of the Place is yours? I know however your tender and laudable Attachment to the Place, and will consent cheerfully to whatever you determine. or I will desire Dr Tufts to consider me as his son, when he considers sister shaw as his Daughter, and do for Us both, as a father.
We had last night and to Day another North East Storm which I hope has brought up a fresh Stock of Seaweed upon the Beach. { 282 } Your Annals of Agriculture are more entertaining to me than political History or amorous Romance.
You will see the Address of the House and the Reply. cold, frozen, Stiff, awkward Stuff— The Reply as an Echo to the Address is an admirable one.— richly merited.1
The News from Europe is enigmatical enough at present. The whole Theatre of Europe has been taken up, for years, with the Representation of a Tragedy of Errors. one knows not what is true, nor what is false: what is right nor what is wrong. Suspense and Pyrrhonism is all my Mind can rest on— One Truth however results from every fact and every Report, every certainty and every Supposition—our own indispensible Duty to preserve our Neutrality.
The Members of Congress begin to See the Danger of receiving Foreigners with open Arms, and admitting them into our Legislatures so easily as We have done. The Western Insurgents are almost all Irish White Boys, and peep O Day Boys &c imported and many of them sold since the Peace.2
Adieu
[signed] J. A
RC (Adams Papers); endorsed: “Decbr 1 1794.”
1. The House of Representatives appointed a committee on 20 Nov. to draft a response to George Washington’s address to Congress and began to debate the committee’s draft the next day. Those debates continued until 28 Nov. when a majority agreed to the text; they delivered the response to Washington on the 29th and he replied the same day. The House’s address, while supportive of Washington’s actions, was formal in tone and emphasized the “consolation” of the Whiskey Rebellion and its aftermath: “It has demonstrated to the candid world, as well as to the American People themselves, that the great body of them, every where, are equally attached to the luminous and vital principle of our Constitution, which enjoins that the will of the majority shall prevail; that they understand the indissoluble union between true liberty and regular Government; … in a word, that they are capable of carrying into execution that noble plan of self-government which they have chosen, as the guarantee of their own happiness, and the asylum for that of all, from every clime, who may wish to unite their destiny with ours.” Washington replied briefly, acknowledging the support of the House but emphasizing that, “notwithstanding the consolations which may be drawn from the issue of this event, it is far better that the artful approaches to such a situation of things should be checked by the vigilant and duly admonished patriotism of our fellow-citizens, than that the evil should increase until it becomes necessary to crush it by the strength of their arms” (Annals of Congress, 3d Cong., 2d sess., p. 891–892, 893–905, 906–949, 950).
2. While many Irish and Scots-Irish immigrants were involved in the Whiskey Rebellion—and were the ethnic groups most frequently blamed for it—in fact, Germans, English, and Welsh were also heavily involved (Slaughter, Whiskey Rebellion, p. 66, 194–195, 269–270).
“Peep-o’-day Boys” were members of an Irish secret society of Protestants, established in the mid-1780s and known for their attacks on Catholics. The name came from their practice of “visiting” Catholics early in the morning to search for illegal arms (Charles George Walpole, A Short History of the Kingdom of Ireland, 2d edn., London, 1885, p. 421–422).

Docno: ADMS-04-10-02-0179

Author: Adams, John
Recipient: Adams, Abigail
Date: 1794-12-02

John Adams to Abigail Adams

[salute] My Dearest Friend

I have recd your favour of Nov. 23.— Mr Cooper The Friend of our Diplomatic at the Hague, I hear was very active in the Election of Mr Ames.—1 I wish that both Parties and all Parties may be convinced that Some Qualification of Voters is necessary; but if Negroes & Sailors and Tapsters all unqualified by Law as Oliver Cromwell used to call them are to vote for one why not for another.?
You have by this time the lively Address of the senate and the lively Reply to it— You will soon have the dull Address of the House and the cold Reply to it.
If Fame Says true Clinton cares little for Popularity: for The Miser has made himself immensely rich, and all his Friends and Tools besides.
Mr Cranch is again here— he has Spent one Evening with me and taken one Breakfast.— He is busy with Mr Greenleaf, but in very good health.
The Mania of Magnificence, is as bad as that of Avarice. King Hooper and Coll Lee, were all their Lives in Such a Rivalry as Mrs Morris & Mr Bingham.2 Heaven preserve me from Such a Judgment. Industry, Frugality, Moderation, and Resignation are the only Qualities which can render human Life happy.
To be first is the Charm as you say. But no more than one can be first—are all the rest to be miserable?
Your Annals of Husbandry continue to delight me. Pray have the yards and Styes all filled with Seaweed. There are 2 or 3 Loads of Manure at the sheep barn which ought to be carted up the Hill.— Joys Manure must be sledded in Winter over the Meadows to our Corn field in the old Plain. The Manure made in the Stable and Barn at home, must be carted or sledded up the Hill before Spring.— If Seaweed can be obtained, it is my design to cover the Mowing Ground opposite Eb. Pennimans as well as the Meadow by Cleverlys. I dont wish to lay out more Work than our People can do but I only mention these Things to you that they may be kept in mind.
Brisler will send you Flour as soon as any Vessell Sails for Boston.
Mr Ceracchi has sent here a Present for you—a Medallion in { 284 } Marble of my Head—as grave, as Sad, as anxious as Severe, as the marble is hard, and the work fine. I inclose you his Card3
Adieu
[signed] J. A
RC (Adams Papers); endorsed: “Decbr 2 1794.”
1. Samuel Cooper (1759–1809), a Boston lawyer and clerk of the Senate from 1785 to 1795. He later became a special justice of the Suffolk Co. Court of Common Pleas (Frederick Tuckerman, “Thomas Cooper, of Boston, and His Descendants,” NEHGR, 44:58 [Jan. 1890]).
2. Robert “King” Hooper and Col. Jeremiah Lee (1721–1775) were prominent and wealthy Marblehead, Mass., merchants as well as brothers-in-law. Both men built spectacular mansions in Marblehead prior to the Revolution. Similarly, the Morrises and Binghams competed to provide lavish entertainments and be the social leaders in 1790s Philadelphia (JA, Legal Papers,1:193; JA, Papers, 4:476; Samuel Roads Jr., A Guide to Marblehead, Marblehead, 1887, p. 37–39; John Russell Young, ed., Memorial History of the City of Philadelphia, 2 vols., N.Y., 1898, 2:69).
3. Giuseppe Ceracchi, an Italian sculptor, arrived in the United States in the early 1790s with hopes of receiving a congressional commission for a major sculpture. To promote his work and flatter authorities, he created terra-cotta busts of numerous American revolutionary leaders. He then converted some of these into either marble busts or medallions, including one of JA. On 25 Nov. 1794 Ceracchi wrote to JA to present him and AA with the medallion (Adams Papers). For a fuller account of Ceracchi and this medallion, which has not been located, see Oliver, Portraits of JA and AA, p. 211–213.

Docno: ADMS-04-10-02-0180

Author: Adams, John
Recipient: Adams, John Quincy
Date: 1794-12-02

John Adams to John Quincy Adams

[salute] My dear Son

Holland, according to our latest Accounts from Europe, may so very possibly have been overrun by the French that it is uncertain where this Letter will find you. As you have a French Tongue in your head, and received a Part of your Education in France, I Should be under no Apprehensions, of your receiving any uncivil Treatment if you were to be wholly among the French, especially as you are a Citizen a Republican and an American. If indeed that Country should be conquered, or if it should become an Ally like Geneva and a new form of Government instituted, all you can do will be to write home and wait for further Orders from The President. I am not however of Opinion that either of these Cases will be reallized.
Your rising Reputation at the Bar, your admired Writings, upon occasional Subjects of great Importance, and your political Influence among the younger Gentlemen of Boston sometimes make me regret your Promotion, and the Loss of your Society to me and to { 285 } your Mother, are additional Circumstances of a disagreable Nature. On the other side, your Appointment is respectable and you see Europe again at the most interesting Period of its History.
Our Army under Wayne has beat the Indians, and The Militia under Governor Lee,1 have Subdued the Insurgents, a miserable though numerous rabble of Irish & Scotch Emigrants and Redemptioners, chiefly imported Since 1783. The good Members of Congress are generally reelected, and some who were not so good have been left out.
Your Mother and all your Friends are as well as when you left Us. Your Uncle, who was also to you for sometime a Preceptor and instead of a Father, went off Suddenly and left a Widow and Children in Distress. I must assist them as much as I can. They have deserved it by their Kindness to me and mine upon all Occasions.
Charles has passed his Examination with honour and is now a Barrister—or Councillor, and if a premature Marriage should not injure him, in a good Way.
The Duke de Liancourt is arrived here in the Pigou, and as it is reported in a very destitute Condition.2
It is difficult to find opportunities to send you the News papers: but I will seek as many as I can.
Mr Greenleaf is soon to embark and will be able to give you all Information3
With a tender Affection as well as great / Esteem I am, my Dear son / your
[signed] John Adams
RC (Adams Papers); internal address: “John Quincy Adams / Minister American at the / Hague”; endorsed by TBA: “The Vice President / 2 December 1795 / 15 May Recd:— / 22 Answd—” Tr (Adams Papers).
1. That is, Gov. Henry “Light-Horse Harry” Lee of Virginia.
2. François Alexandre Frédéric, Duc de La Rochefoucauld-Liancourt (1747–1827), was an early supporter of the French Revolution, a member of the States General and Constituent Assembly, and a commander in the French Army. He was dismissed from the army after attempting to prevent the death of Louis XVI and went to England in 1792. He came to the United States in 1794 on the ship Pigou, which arrived in Philadelphia in late November. He journeyed throughout America for several years, eventually publishing in London in 1799 a report of his adventures entitled Travels through the United States of North America, the Country of the Iroquois, and Upper Canada, in the Years 1795, 1796, and 1797 (William Harper Bennett, Catholic Footsteps in Old New York: A Chronicle of Catholicity in the City of New York from 1524 to 1808, N.Y., 1909, p. 415–416; Philadelphia Gazette of the United States, 27 Nov. 1794).
3. James Greenleaf planned to return to Amsterdam to resume his position as U.S. consul there but never actually sailed (Clark, Greenleaf and Law, p. 90).

Docno: ADMS-04-10-02-0181

Author: Adams, John
Recipient: Adams, Thomas Boylston
Date: 1794-12-03

John Adams to Thomas Boylston Adams

[salute] My dear Thomas

You have lost the Opportunity of sharing in the Glory of some of your Friends in this City, who have been out and returned, from the Campain against the Insurrection in the four Western Counties of Pensilvania. Your Friend Climer lost his Life, and is greatly lamented.1
’Squire Cranch as his Father calls him was here Yesterday with Mr Greenleaf, whose Agent as well as Lawyer he is to be at the Fœderal City. A little ill Luck in the Loss of his Books and Cloaths, with Mrs Daltons furniture and Mr Daltons 100 dozen of Madeira Wine, will not I hope discourage him. 40 houses which Mr Greenleaf is building at once will give him Amusement and Employment.
Pray how does that mighty Novelty Europe Strike your youthful Curiosity.? Let me tell you a Secret Tom.— It will either make or mar you. If you prove Superiour to its Blandishments Seductions and false Charms, it will make a Man of you.— if not you are undone.
Your Friends enquire often about you, and express their high Esteem.
Your Landlady came with her little Daughter and asked me to lend her your Bed till Spring, in moving Accents which I did not Strive to resist.2 The other Things We shall take away. The Gentlemen Boarders at your Lodgings enquire civilly & kindly after you.
Science, Litterature in general, Law & Policy in particular, Arts Agriculture Commerce and Taste, ought to be your Objects— And have a Care how you loose your Admiration of the sublimest Philosophy which the human Mind can conceive, or your Love of the purest Morals which ever touched the human heart.— One God of Wisdom Goodness & Power, creating preserving and Governing the Universe in Truth & Justice and rewarding in a future World Virtue & Benevolence in this. A Wise Man if he could be convinced that this was all fiction and Imposture (which he never can be) would think himself bound if he had either felt Love or Benevolence, to Support it with all his faculties.
All our friends are well and anxious to hear from your Brother & you. Adieu my dear son / I am your affectionate
[signed] John Adams
Remember me to all my old friends
{ 287 }
RC (NjP:Andre deCoppett Coll.); internal address: “Thomas Boylston Adams Esq”; endorsed: “The Vice President / 3 Decr: 1794 / 15 May Recd:—95.”
1. Meredith Clymer (1771–1794), Princeton 1787, a lawyer, had volunteered with the First Troop Philadelphia City Calvary to assist in quelling the Whiskey Rebellion. He died of exposure in western Pennsylvania on 18 November. He had been good friends with TBA, who noted in his Diary that “Among all the young men of my acquaintance no one possessed a larger share of my esteem” (Princetonians, 4:176–178; M/TBA/2, 16 March 1795, APM Reel 282).
2. Boardinghouse owners John Stall Sr. and his wife, Frances, had three daughters: Elizabeth, Frances, and Mary (Byron Williams, History of Clermont and Brown Counties, Ohio, 2 vols., Milford, Ohio, 1913, 1:279, 300–301).

Docno: ADMS-04-10-02-0182

Author: Adams, John
Recipient: Adams, Abigail
Date: 1794-12-05

John Adams to Abigail Adams

[salute] My Dearest Friend

I returned, this Day the Visit of the ci-devant Duke De Liancourt. He is a Sensible Man. He is a Cousin German of the late Duke de la Rochefaucault, and inherited his Estate and for what I know his Titles: but neither the Estate nor Titles are of any Use at present.— What will be, the future destiny of these high Personages is a curious Problem.
I endeavoured to impress upon him as I have upon all other French men, the Necessity of an independent Senate in France, incapable of being warped by Ministers of State on one hand or by popular Demagogues on the other.
I begin now to entertain hopes of soon hearing from our Sons, to whom I have written by Mr Greenleaf.
This Session of Congress is the most innocent I ever knew.— We have done no harm.
The English are so beaten and the French so tryumphant that I wonder, there are not some Projects for War.— But it seems Popularity is not now to be gotten by Spirit.
I know not what to write to you, unless I tell you I love you, and long to see you— But this will be no News. I wish I had a farm here— I would give you my Chronicles of Husbandry in return for yours.
Three long months before I can see you. Oh! What to do with myself I know not.
Brisler has this day shipped 2 Barrells of flour and the Medallion—by Ames.
My Duty to My Mother and Love to Brothers & sisters & Cousins.
{ 288 }
Mr Morris enquired of me the Character of William Cranch— besure I gave him a good one.
How is Mr Wiberts Health and Mr Quincys?
Adieu
[signed] J. A
RC (Adams Papers); endorsed: “December 5th / 1794.”

Docno: ADMS-04-10-02-0183

Author: Adams, Abigail
Recipient: Adams, John
Date: 1794-12-06

Abigail Adams to John Adams

[salute] my Dearest Friend

Your kind favours of the 19th 23 & 26 of Nov’br came safe to Hand, together with the pamphlet. the writer appears to have ransakd Pandimonium, & collected into a small compass the iniquity and abuses of Several generations, “sitting down all in Malice & Naught extermating.”1 If the representations of our Democratic Societies both of Men and measures, for these two years past, were to be collected into one pamphlet, and could obtain belief, some future Jefferson, might cry out, that it containd [“]an astonishing concentration of abuses.” in a Government like that of Great Britain, we know that many abuses exist, both in the Governors & Governed, but Still in no Country, America excepted, has there ever existed so great a share of personal Liberty & Security of property.
You ask what I think of France I ruminate upon them as I lye awake many hours before light. my present thought is, that their victorious Army will give them a Government in Time, in spight of all their conventions, but of what nature it will be, it is hard to say. Men Warlike and innured to Arms and conquest, are not very apt to become the most quiet Submissive Subjects.— are we, as reported, to have a new Minister from thence? I presume Munroe is to their taste. it will be well if he does not take a larger latitude than his credentials will warrent.
I am anxious for our Dear Sons. There prospects are not very pleasent, even tho the french should not get possession of Holland. This Whirligig of a World, tis difficult to keep steady in it.
It gives me pain to find you so lonesome in the midst of so many amusements. I know you do not take pleasure in them, but you would feel more cheerfull if you went more into Society. the knitting work & Needle are a great relief in these long winter Evenings which you, poor Gentleman cannot use. like mr Solus in the play, [“]you want a wife to hover about you, to bind up your temples to { 289 } mix your Bark & to pour out your Coffe,” but dont you know, that you will prize her the more for feeling the want of her for a time?2

“How blessings Brighten as they take their flight”3

The buisness of the Farm goes on, the plowing is all finishd & the Manure all out, the yard full of sea weed, and a little wood.
The News of the day is that mrs Hancock is going to take Captain Scot into her Employ, in plain words that she is going to marry him—an able bodied Rough sea Captain.4

“Frailty thy Name is woman

we cannot call it Love; for at her age

the hey-day in the Blood is tame, its humble

And waits upon the Judgment, and what Judgment

would step so low”?5

alas dorethy I never thought the very wise, but I thought the proud and ambitious.— do you say I am censorious. it may be so, but I cannot but wonder.
adieu pray write in good Spirits. you know I never could bear to hear you groan and at this distance it gives me the vapours—
I am most affectionatly / Yours
[signed] A Adams—
RC (Adams Papers); endorsed: “Mrs A. Decr 6. 1794 / ansd. 16th.
1. “Nothing extenuate, / Nor set down aught in malice” (Shakespeare, Othello, Act V, scene ii, lines 342–343).
2. In Elizabeth Inchbald’s 1793 play Every One Has His Fault, Act III, scene ii, Solus says, “But then, what a poor disconsolate object shall I live, without a wife to hover about me; to bind up my head, and bathe my temples! Oh, I am impatient for all the chartered rights, privileges, and immunities of a married man.”
3. Edward Young, The Complaint; or, Night Thoughts, Night II, line 602.
4. Dorothy Quincy Hancock married Capt. James Scott on 28 July 1796. He had been an advisor to John Hancock and frequently carried letters and goods for the Adamses between Boston and England (Ellen C. D. Q. Woodbury, Dorothy Quincy, Wife of John Hancock, 2d edn., Washington, D.C., 1905, p. 229–231).
5. Shakespeare, Hamlet, Act I, scene ii, line 146; Act III, scene iv, lines 68–71.

Docno: ADMS-04-10-02-0184

Author: Adams, John
Recipient: Adams, Charles
Date: 1794-12-06

John Adams to Charles Adams

[salute] Dear Charles

I condole with you, under the mournful News of the Barons Palsy.1 I have long wondered that a Military Character so habituated to exercise should have neglected it so imprudently for so many Years. This Country is loosing in rapid Succession the Characters { 290 } who were forward and active in the Revolution. Mr Handcock, Mr sherman Mr Alsop, Mr Witherspoon, Mr Clark Mr Lee, Mr Gillon, and now the Baron, will in a few months lessen the Catalogue of Old Hands.2 There is however, a young Generation rising who promise to fill their places, with equal Decency Reputation and Utility. May you, my son be one among the many whose Appearance upon the stage, may comfort the hearts and quiet the fears for their Country of the elder Characters as they Advance off. and among the rest of your affectionate / Father
[signed] John Adams
RC (MHi:Seymour Coll.); internal address: “Charles Adams Esqr.”
1. Baron von Steuben died on 28 Nov. (DAB).
2. Roger Sherman, the longtime Connecticut politician, passed away on 23 July 1793. John Alsop, a former New York representative, died on 22 Nov. 1794. Rev. John Witherspoon, the former president of Princeton and a New Jersey representative, for whom see JA, Papers, 3:390, died on 15 Nov., while Richard Henry Lee of Virginia passed away on 19 June. All served with JA in the Continental Congress, and all but Alsop were signers of the Declaration of Independence (Biog. Dir. Cong.)

Docno: ADMS-04-10-02-0185

Author: Adams, John
Recipient: Adams, Abigail
Date: 1794-12-07

John Adams to Abigail Adams

[salute] My dearest Friend

Brisler has shipped, on board The Abby Captain Eames, two Barrells of Flour, one hundred Weight of Clover Seed and half a Bushell of Herds Grass Seeds; and the Medallion: all consigned to our Friend Mr Smith in Boston. As Captain Eames’s Intention was to Sail to day, I Suppose he is gone. twelve Pounds of Clover seed and two quarts at least of Herds grass seeds must be sown, when the time comes, to each Acre of Ground.
The Weather is so mild and fine here that ploughing or any other Business may be done as well as in October. how it is with you I know not. The Times are very calm here at present and political societies are very Silent. There is Scarcely Animation enough in either house, to excite Attention. One may sleep in the midst of a Debate. I have not yet tried however.
I want to mount my little horse and ride to Penns Hill, or down to Uncle Quincys. but walking must answer for exercise till next March.
Dr Ewing preaches to me every sunday but I like Mr Wibert as well— how does he do?
I am more solitary than I was last Winter. but I can read. Writing is painful to my Eyes.
I am afraid Charles will loose his Friend Steuben. He writes me { 291 } that the Baron has been Stricken with a Palsy, a Catastrophy naturally to be expected from his total neglect of Exercise. It is unaccountable that a Military Man, who must have used so much Exercise in some parts of his Life and have felt the Pleasure as well as the Salubrity of it, should be become so indolent in his old Age. But Men in solitude are apt to become inactive in proportion as they increase their gormandizing.
There has been a great Mortality I think of late among our old patriotic Chiefs civil and military. The President wears the best of any of them that I have seen: and may he long continue his Vigour of Body as well as Mind.
Hamilton is certainly to resign and Knox is expected to go the same Way. Wolcot is talked of for the Treasury and Pickering for the War Office with how much probability I know not.1
These Resignations as well as that of Mr Izard and Mr Boudinot are not prosperous Omens—2 I fear that good Men will be worn out and wearied too often into Resignations. It is unpleasant Service how much soever it may be envied.
Adieu
RC (Adams Papers); endorsed: “Decembr 7th.”
1. Henry Knox resigned as secretary of war on 28 Dec.; Timothy Pickering took over the position on 2 Jan. 1795. Alexander Hamilton, who resigned as secretary of the treasury on 31 Jan., was replaced by Oliver Wolcott on 2 Feb. (DAB).
2. Neither Ralph Izard nor Elias Boudinot stood for reelection to the 4th Congress. Boudinot (1740–1821), a New Jersey lawyer, had served in the Continental Congress, signing the 1783 Treaty of Paris as the president of that body. He subsequently served in the U.S. Congress from 1789 to 1795 and later became director of the U.S. Mint, remaining at that position from 1795 to 1805 (Biog. Dir. Cong.).

Docno: ADMS-04-10-02-0186

Author: Adams, John
Recipient: Adams, Abigail
Date: 1794-12-08

John Adams to Abigail Adams

[salute] My Dearest Friend

Your favour of Nov. 30, I received this morning. As every Thing conspires to keep me poor, I may as well give Way as not: so I will even agree to purchase Pratts Pew: But when I can send you Money to pay for it I know not— The Appropriation Bill is not passed and when it will be brought forward is uncertain, I will Send to the Treasury however and see if I can get a quarter without it. If I cannot I will write you Word in a Post or two. As to Pratts parting with the Pew I believe there is little danger of his finding any other but me imprudent enough to go to his Price.
Brisler has given fourteen Pence this Currency, about 11d of our { 292 } Lawful Money per Pound for what he has sent by Eames, of Clover Seed, and two dollars for 1/2 Bushell of Herds Grass seed, but it is thought the Price will rise.
The Senators and Representatives from N. England come to see me oftener than they ever did when at Mr Otis’s or when I had a Family here, and We converse on a more familiar Footing: But I cannot bear this course of Life— I must get out of it, some way or other.
The Whiskey Rebellion has rendered unpopular the Rant that was in vogue last Winter: but as every Thing has its Revolution in these revolving Days It may become fashionable again.
It Seems that Dearborn & William Lyman are not chosen at the first Tryal, and I should guess they will not have a better Chance at the Second.1
The Situation of Britain is fearful, as well as that of Holland: nor is that of France, notwithstanding their brillant Successes against their external Ennemies less ominous. But The Deneuement, The Catastrophy of the whole vast plot is beyond the reach of my Comprehension or Conjecture.
The Right of a nation to institute a Government is undeniable: But whether any nation will ever fairly institute a good one is yet a Problem. I fear that France will be cheated into a bad one after all her struggles & sacrifices.
I have written to our sons. I dont flatter myself with hearing very soon of their Arrival. Their Visit is made to Europe in a very critical and a very interesting time. Every Faculty they have, must be excited by the terrors around them, and the Observations Reflections and Conversation they may have, may be of the greatest service to them thro Life.
Adieu
RC (Adams Papers); endorsed: “December 8th / 1794.”
1. Both Henry Dearborn and William Lyman were reelected; see JA to AA, 15 March, and note 2, above.

Docno: ADMS-04-10-02-0187

Author: Adams, John
Recipient: Adams, Abigail
Date: 1794-12-10

John Adams to Abigail Adams

[salute] My Dearest Friend

Entre nous Mr sheerjashub Bourne called upon me the other Morning to ask me some Questions about Mr Blacks farm and Captn. Beale’s farm. He says both are to be sold— Beale asks ten { 293 } thousand Dollars for his New House and farm—and the same for Squantm— Mr Blacks asks Eighteen thousand but it is Supposed would take fifteen. I hope in mercy Bourn will not buy— Our present Neighbours are I believe much better. dont say any thing of this. Beale and Black are both impatient to be making Money in Boston, and I dare say the Ladies had rather shine in the City.
Mrs Hancock it seems, thinks the Captn of a Man of War as great a Man as a Governor or King— I dare say she will find him a greater. Do you remember a Dialogue of Ld Littleton between The Princess of orange and the Countess of Clarickard?1 I dare say she has no Idea of devoting herself to the Memory of a deceased Husband. such Ideas are too Heroic & Romantic, for this enlightened Age.
Mr Cranch breakfasted with me, this morning. Tomorrow he goes off— I gave him a Letter to Mr Carrol of Carrolton.2
Adieu
RC (Adams Papers); endorsed: “December 10th.”
1. George Lyttelton, Baron Lyttelton, Dialogues of the Dead, London, 1760, Dialogue XVI. In this imagined dialogue between Louise de Coligni, Princess of Orange, and Frances Walsingham, Countess of Essex and Clanrickard (or Clanricarde), Lyttelton has the two women discussing their marriages, particularly Walsingham’s decision to marry Richard de Burgh, 4th Earl of Clanrickard, following the deaths of her first two husbands, Sir Philip Sidney and Robert Devereux, 2d Earl of Essex. The Princess of Orange cannot understand how Walsingham would agree to marry someone of considerably lower station and stature than her previous husbands, arguing, “The Ambition of your Heart could surely be satisfied with no meaner Husband.” Walsingham disagrees, stating, “I desired a quiet Life and the Joys of wedded Love, with an agreeable, virtuous, well-born, unambitious, unenterprising Husband. All this I found in the Earl of Clanrickard: and, believe me, Madam, I enjoyed more solid Felicity in Ireland with him, than I ever had known with my two former Husbands, in all the Pride of their Glory, when England and Europe resounded with their Praise.”
2. On 10 Dec. JA wrote a letter of introduction for William Cranch to Charles Carroll of Carrollton, his former colleague in the Continental Congress (DLC:William Cranch Papers).

Docno: ADMS-04-10-02-0188

Author: Adams, Abigail
Recipient: Adams, John
Date: 1794-12-11

Abigail Adams to John Adams

[salute] my Dearest Friend

I was most sadly dissapointed last Evening when my Newpapers came from the post office without a Letter. the latest date I have received was Novbr 26, so that two post have arrived without a line. I am not anxious if one, only passes, but you are usually so good in writing me once a week always; and very frequently oftener, that I am really allarmd least you are sick, & very sick otherways you { 294 } would have written. my only hope rest now that mr Freeman who I hear got in yesterday, may have a letter for me. I shall be in the vapours till Saturday, if I do not hear.
I have read with great eagerness the Debates in Congress, and whilst I am highly gratified at the firmness and independant Spirits discoverd by those who with superior Tallents Support the Laws & Government, I am mortified to find so large a proportion of that House Abbettors of Jacobine clubbs, and favourers of a spirit of insurrection and Rebellion— yet tis best that the world should see and know them, and their principals. these have been pretty fully displayd in the late Debates. Austin I hear is thundering his annathamas against the President & Ecoing Giles in the Chronical.
we have had remarkable fine weather Since December came in. I pray you to send me for a New years Gift, Lady Cravens Journey to constantinople, Bennet’s Strictures on Female Education, & to Louissa Bennets Letters to a young Lady.1 they are to be Sold at Davies Book store No 68 market Street.2
My Creditors call upon me, and I promise to pay them in the course of the Month. I am really in want of a remittance.3 I know I have it in my power to help myself, but I had rather wait a few days longer—
I have only time to add Sincere & fervent wishes for your Health & happiness—without which neither can be the lot of your ever affectionate
[signed] A Adams—
I have written to you every week
RC (Adams Papers); endorsed: “Mrs A. Decr. 11. / 1794.”
1. Elizabeth Craven, Baroness Craven, A Journey through the Crimea to Constantinople, London, 1789; Rev. John Bennett, Strictures on Female Education, London, 1787; and Bennett, Letters to a Young Lady, on a Variety of Useful and Interesting Subjects, Warrington, Eng., 1789.
2. Benjamin Davies, a bookseller and stationer, operated a store at 68 Market (High) Street in Philadelphia (Philadelphia Directory, 1794, Evans, No. 27089).
3. On this same date, JA sent AA $600 (Adams Papers).

Docno: ADMS-04-10-02-0189

Author: Adams, Charles
Recipient: Adams, Abigail
Date: 1794-12-11

Charles Adams to Abigail Adams

[salute] My dear Mother

Since I left the Baron which was about three weeks ago I have had the melancholy account of his being attacked with the numb palsy. I never expect to see him again his total neglect of exercise has rendered it almost impossible he should ever recover. Thus { 295 } strikes the hand of disease—and we are no more. To me he has been a friend indeed and I may never expect []to look upon his like again.”—
My brothers have gone where they will probably behold many scenes of distress. As it does not appear possible to stop the career of the French they may be obliged to return to this Country earlier than we expected. By the latest accounts to be credited the French army have obtained such a footing in Holland that according to their usual mode of progression the whole Country may in a few weeks be in their possession The present Session of Congress promises to be very tedious not an inch but what is disputed with all the virulence of party Messrs Ames and Dexter have gained great credit by the eloquence of their speeches but I fear a majority of Antifederalists in the lower house. If this Country is to be governed by Democratic societies honest men had better retire. “When vice prevails and impious men bear sway the post of honor is a private station” Colo Hamilton resigns in January and if Mr Jay does not return I think he will be proposed as Governor for this State. Though nothing of this kind has as yet transpired I have little doubt that it will shortly come forth. Should he prevail it will be the victory of Schuyler over many of our great Demagogues1 whether “this is a consolation devoutly to be wished” or not,2 I leave for those who are more fond of party animosity than I am to determine. Though I have much confidence in the firmness and independence of Col Hamilton yet I freely own I know of no man who can at the present moment support with perfect freedom the dignity of that chair.
Adieu my dear Mother believe me ever your / affectionate son
[signed] Charles Adams
1. That is, Gen. Philip Schuyler, Alexander Hamilton’s father-in-law.
2. “’Tis a consummation / Devoutly to be wish’d” (Shakespeare, Hamlet, Act III, scene i, lines 63–64).

Docno: ADMS-04-10-02-0190

Author: Adams, Abigail
Recipient: Adams, John
Date: 1794-12-12

Abigail Adams to John Adams

[salute] my dearest Friend

If I had waited patiently for the post of Thursday Noon, I need not have had so much anxiety, but I had Sent on Wednesday to the office, and received my papers, & word that there were no Letters, so not having been very well myself, my Imagination conjured up { 296 } that you were not only sick, but very sick, or you would not let two posts pass without writing. I was relieved by your Letters of December 1 & 2d. what I wrote you respecting the Medford Farm, and collecting Materials for Building, went only upon the Supposition that my Sister should sell. the Building I know will be expensive, but according to Captain Brooks, the house is Scarcly habitable If I had more landed estate, which had been my Fathers, I should regreet less the parting with my part of the Medford Farm. For I never had an anxiety upon my mind, but what if I was ever to be so unhappy as to need it, that I should be sufficiently provided for. yet as that is my Birth Right; been upwards of ninety years in the Family & sixty Tennanted by the Same Name; I own I should part with it with great reluctance. captain Brooks told me that there had been a Number of persons to him, since the death of mr shaw to inquire if mrs shaw would sell, & whether it were possible to purchase the whole. the Cannals have given a rise to land in that Neighbourhood1 if Mrs shaw does not sell, she will Mortgage the income to Build I have conversd with the Doctor upon the Subject. he means to go to Medford & take a Carpenter with him and estimate the cost. Mrs Shaw has some thoughts of selling Hockly which will enable her to Build without relinquishing her income from the Medford Farm, but she is still undertermind, & wishes for advise— I did not like to give it, first, because I really could not say which was best for her to do, and because I was an interested person. tho I know I am not selfish, and should dispise my self if I was capable of even wishing an advantage over any person, much less the widow & Fatherless. I was gratified the last week in hearing of an act of benevolence in the Haverhill Farmers. some of them proposed to the Gentlemen of the Town, that if they would purchase a Quantity of wood in the woods Sufficient for Mrs shaw this Winter, they would cut & draw it, which was accordingly done, and at Thanksgiving they continued & manifested their regard and affection towards her. who ever goes after her in the Relation in which she has stood, will find a difficult Task to make her place good. no person could wish to be more loved & regarded by a people than she is by them.
Have you read the Jacobiniad in the orrery?2 do you know its features? you will recollect a request made for a coppy of a poem. the Reply was that it was out of the hands of the owner. if they become Sausy & Insolent it shall be printed, said they who the retailer is I know not. I suppose Honestus’s attack upon the President has brought forth the extracts alluded to. I was pleasd with the address { 297 } of the Senate, and observd to mr Cranch, how feelingly the President replied, & with an ardour & warmth, that shew his sensibility upon the occasion— the address of the House, is like the motion of a Caterpillar, slow & heavy; I expect the Countanance which the Democrats have met with from the House, and their unwillingness to censure them, will cost this Country a standing Army. as France has had a great hand in raising the Spirit of munity & Rebellion here, now she appears to be convinced of the pernicious concequences resulting from her Revolutionary Tribunals, Jacobine clubs &c & Since the convention have declared it a disgrace to suffer any voices to be heard in the Republick, which shall speak louder than the National representitives. I hope their influence will be as great in crushing this Hydra, as in giving birth to it, but the Devil is always easier raisd than laid. what say the Jacobins to that part of the address, which says—“No private Authority, or society is the People; or ought to act or speak in their Name.”3 Holland it is generally believed is in the Hands of the French— England is just ready for Tumult. happy America, Land peculiarly blest! long may it continue thus, under an all gracious Providence, to whom do this people owe their safety and security? to their wise govenours—their judicious patriots, & to the enlightned part of the community.
present my respectfull compliments to mr Ceracchi for his obliging present. if it is as good a likeness as the Bust, I shall value it highly— I wish I could obtain a Medallion of the President as a companion to it. this Country will never again be blest, as it is at this Period. may the Remembrance be perpetuated. I see the Secretary of the Treasury has Sent in his determination to resign. have his adversaries hunted him down? or has he more asspiring views.? where will be found a successor?
The Farmers Calender must Succeed. this week 3 days have been employd in the woods, one day in plowing for mr Belcher. diging up the wall & heaping the Stones for sleding has occupied some of their time. to day they are in quest of more sea weed, but my people, all report, that they have cleard the Shores of it. the manure at the Barn will be attended to. at present we see no prospect of Snow, nor does the Season look like winter. shaw told me a few days ago that he had been seven weeks here, & that his Team had not stood still a day during the whole time, Sundays excepted. his Name sake wants more energy. tis difficult getting him in motion.
Mrs Brisler is here to day She and her Family are well— our Friends are all So. your Mother has walkd here twice this week, and { 298 } spent two days with me. Remember me to mrs otis & cousin Betsy. they were all well at her Brothers yesterday—
Yours
[signed] A Adams—
RC (Adams Papers); endorsed: “M[rs] A. Decr. 12 and 23.” Some loss of text due to a torn manuscript.
1. The Middlesex Canal, which was designed to connect Boston Harbor with the Merrimack River, was first authorized in June 1793 and construction began in Sept. 1794. While it was not fully operational until 1803, its planned existence increased the value of land along its route (Mary Stetson Clarke, The Old Middlesex Canal, Melrose, Mass., 1974, p. 9–10, 35, 42).
2. “Remarks on the Jacobiniad,” a ten-part series published in the Boston Federal Orrery between 8 Dec. 1794 and 22 Jan. 1795, was a satirical treatment of Democratic-Republican societies in Boston disguised as a serious literary review of a fictitious poem, “The Jacobiniad.” It was later published in pamphlet form in Boston, 1795, Evans, No. 28276, where it is attributed to John Sylvester John Gardiner (1765–1830), an Episcopal priest and rector at Trinity Church, Boston (DAB).
3. AA is quoting from a letter from the National Convention to “the French People” warning that “the participators of the crimes of ROBESPIERRE, and of all the conspirators that you have overthrown, are employing every artifice to sap the foundations of the Republic; and, covered with different masks, are trying by disorder and anarchy, to affect a counterrevolution.” The letter continued, “The National Convention, constant in its progress, supported by the will of the people, will maintain and organize the government which has saved the Republic” (Boston Columbian Centinel, 3 Dec. 1794).

Docno: ADMS-04-10-02-0191

Author: Adams, Thomas Boylston
Recipient: Adams, Abigail
Date: 1794-12-12

Thomas Boylston Adams to Abigail Adams

[salute] Dear Madam,

The Commission with which you charged me for the Messrs Willink has been executed so far as depends upon me. The Gentlemen have promised to embrace the first opportunity that offers for Boston, to forward the things to you. I thought that they were too large to be sent with convenience form New York, for which port only, were there any vessels to sail immediately from Amsterdam.1 The commissions with which I was charged for Mrs Welsh to be executed in England, were duly attended to. The Silk was colored according to the pattern given; and the money delivered to Mrs Copley to purchase the other silk, who promised to send it by the first opportunity addressed to you.2 I believe this is all the important business I have to communicate.
I wish it were in my power to afford you any amusement by this opportunity; but having experienced very little myself since my residence here, I have nothing to relate which could be worthy of your perusal. I past a few days some time since at Amsterdam, and received many flattering civilities from many people there, but as I cannot yet speak either french or the language of the Country, I felt { 299 } myself what I actually was in most companies, a mere cypher. I understand almost every thing spoken in French, and hope shortly to acquire the talent of speaking that language, which is more generally in use than the language of this Country.
I was pleased with the City of Amsterdam, which in point of appearance is much superior to London. We were occasionally in company with the Orangists & the Patriots, and sometimes there was a mixture of both; the professions of friendship & cordiality were greater from some of the patriotic party than the orangists, but I should do violence to my opinion if I said, that any difference was discernible in the actual attentions we experienced. I could easily discover the exciting cause of professions of attachment to America, which came from gentlemen, who owe all their present wealth to the lucrative commerce they carry on with that Country, and I could not but think, that the warmth of expression was in some measure proportioned to the degree of benefit. In short there is a species of idolatry to money in this Country, which altho’ it may not be more fervent than in other places, at least has the appearance of devotion, because it is not a point of delicacy to conceal their homage. I began in England to despise the sordid temper which appear’s to actuate that people in a great degree, but my contempt was not complete till I saw this passion in its most lively colors in the genius of a Dutchman. I have no contempt for the possession of money, as it is a means of obtaining the goodthings of this world, but to possess millions, and convert them to no use for the benefit of others, is practising avarice in its most approbrious shape. I suppose however that the doctrine of Hobbes is more strikingly illustrated in this Country, than any other; and that the ladder of power is made of gold, instead of personal merit. It is but a different mean of attaining the end & aim of all mankind. When gold is wisdom, or in the same estimation among a whole people, the heaviest purse is sure of the greatest patronage. It is a circumstance as singular in my opinion as it is true in fact, that this principle of avarice is so strong, that it will not suffer these people to contribute a trifling proportion of their wealth to defend and secure the whole. I suspect that the despotic dominion of their glittering Master, has so dazzled the active force of independence in their minds, that they will submit to any foreign power, that may chose to take them under protection. Present appearances authorize all these reflections; you will not therefore accuse me of severity; when they deserve a better opinion I shall be happy to embrace it.
{ 300 }
You will wish to know in what manner we pass our time here. I can satisfy you in a few words. We rise in the morning between 8 & 9, write all the forenoon, that is till 3 ’o’Clock. Get our dinner, and then read or write till between 12 & 1. at night. This is the journal of one day, and it answers equally well for all. When the weather permits I take a walk in the wood, where the only beings with whom I have any connection are an army of half naked beggars who are emploring a hard earned pittance from the close-clinched fist of charity. This place is in itself a delightful spot. I never saw a City altogether so beautiful; in Summer it must be another paradise, you see already I have begun to rebell.
Remember me to all friends in your neighborhood, and believe me now & at all times / your Son
[signed] Thomas B Adams.
RC (Adams Papers); internal address: “Mrs: A Adams.”; endorsed: “T Adams / December 12 1794.”
1. The exact details of the items AA requested that TBA purchase for her are not known but apparently included tablecloths and sheeting. AA complained in Nov. 1795 that some of the items she received were not of adequate quality, and as late as Oct. 1796, TBA was still trying to resolve matters with the Dutch merchants involved (AA to TBA, 30 Nov. 1795; TBA to AA, 5 Oct. 1796, both Adams Papers).
2. Susanna Clarke Copley sent the silk for Abigail Kent Welsh on 15 Nov. 1794; see Copley to AA, 15 Nov., above, and AA to TBA, 11 Feb. 1795, below.

Docno: ADMS-04-10-02-0192

Author: Adams, Charles
Recipient: Adams, John
Date: 1794-12-13

Charles Adams to John Adams

[salute] My dear Sir

I yesterday received your favor of the 11th inst enclosing the Post note for 100 Dols: for which receive my thanks.1 Our election for members of the house of Representatives was finished yesterday and thus an end put for sometime to the iniquities which upon such occasions are always practised. The friends of the Democratic Mr Livingston and of the Aristocratic Mr Watts flatter themselves that their respective Candidate will obtain the seat.2 Among the many odd circumstances in this world that the Livingston family should obtain the reputation of Democrats is not the least curious but not surprising.

“Observe their courtship to the common people:

How they do seem to dive into their hearts,

With humble and familiar courtesy;

What reverence do they throw away on slaves;

Wooing poor craftsmen with the craft of smiles,

{ 301 }

And patient underbearing of their fortunes,

As ’t’were to banish their affects with them.

Off goes each bonnet to an oyster wench:

A brace of draymen bid God speed them well!

And had the tribute of their humble knees;

With—Thanks our Countrymen our loving friends.”

Ricd 2d A 1. Sc 43

I suppose in case Mr Jay does not soon return Col Hamilton will be proposed for the office of Governor of this State. Mr Burr expects to obtain it. Mr Clinton is to resign as is said. Chancellor Livingston has pretensions. Not one among these candidates can supply the place of Mr Jay whether this State is to be ruled by the Schuyler or Livingston family is of no great importance and by one or the other it must be if the Chief Justice does not return. These are my sincere sentiments, sentiments which if made public would damn me in the eyes of both parties. I beleive them just and I cannot and will not go every length with any party whatsoever.
I am my dear Sir your affectionate son
[signed] Chas Adams
1. Not found.
2. Edward Livingston (1764–1836), Princeton 1781, a lawyer and member of the extensive Livingston family of New York, defeated John Watts, the incumbent, by a vote of 1,843 to 1,638 in the election for the congressional district representing New York City. Livingston would continue to serve in Congress until 1801 (Biog. Dir. Cong.; Young, Democratic Republicans, p. 420).
3. Shakespeare, King Richard the Second, Act I, scene iv, lines 24–34.

Docno: ADMS-04-10-02-0193

Author: Adams, John
Recipient: Adams, Charles
Date: 1794-12-13

John Adams to Charles Adams

[salute] Dear Charles

The Nature, Designs, rise, Progress, present State future Operations and successes of “Selfcreated Societies,[”] are likely to become Objects of interesting Enquiry and should be critically Studied by a Lawyer. We know something of the History of them in France. The fruits of them in Geneva you will see in the Pamphlet inclosed which was written by D’Ivernois. The fruits of them in Scotland, you may see in another Pamphlet inclosed, the Tryal of Wat and Downie.—1 I may send you another Pamphlet shewing them in Lauzanne and Le Pays de vaud in Switzerland—as also in some other Tryals in England and Scotland.2
It behoves you as a Lawyer to Settle in your Mind accurate Ideas of the Limits prescribed to the Legality of Such Societies, { 302 } Assemblies Conventions or Clubbs. I will assist you in furnishing you with Information on these Subjects.
I am &c
[signed] John Adams
RC (MHi:Seymour Coll.).
1. Francis d’Ivernois, Authentic History of the Origin and Progress of the Late Revolution in Geneva, Phila., 1794, Evans, No. 27159; and The Trials at Large of Robert Watt and David Downie for High Treason, London, 1794. The d’Ivernois pamphlet has not been found but for the Watt and Downie work, see JA to CA, 31 Jan. 1795, note 3, below.
2. Jean Jacques Cart, Lettres de Jean-Jaques Cart à Bernard Demuralt, trésorier du pays de Vaud, sur le droit public de ce pays, et sur les événemens actuels, Paris, 1793. In April 1794 JA forwarded a copy of this pamphlet from the author to Thomas Jefferson. Cart inscribed a second copy to JA that is in JA’s library at MB (Jefferson, Papers, 28:50–51, 57; Catalogue of JA’s Library).

Docno: ADMS-04-10-02-0194

Author: Adams, John Quincy
Recipient: Adams, Abigail
Date: 1794-12-13

John Quincy Adams to Abigail Adams

[salute] My dear Madam.

I hear of an opportunity from Rotterdam to Boston, but so lately that I have scarce time to write any Letters except my necessary dispatches. General Eustace goes as a passenger in this vessel, and I have given him letters of introduction to you and several other of my friends in Boston.1
Had I known of this vessel earlier I could have taken measures to send your things by her; which for the present must be postponed. I hope however we shall have occasions from Amsterdam.
Of news I can say but little. The detail of war is as insipid in relation as it is inhuman in action. The french armies do not go into winter quarters; three days since they attempted at three several places to cross the Waal, but failed of success. The other army at Mentz last week renewed an assault upon that city five times but were still repulsed, as is pretended with great loss.— All this amounts to nothing upon the great scale. The success of the French is at this time secured almost beyond the malice of Fortune. Another campaign appears however to be inevitable2
We begin to be very anxious to hear from our friends in America; we hope they will not wait to hear of our arrival, before they write to us. It is probable that the present state of affairs in this Country may deter our merchants from sending their vessels to Holland.— You will therefore be so kind as to write by every opportunity to England, enclosing your letters under cover addressed either to Mr: Pinckney or Mr: Johnson.3 I shall easily receive them in either case.
{ 303 }
Before this reaches you the Treaty signed by Mr: Jay and Lord Grenville, will no doubt have reached America, and be under the discussion of the Senate.4 The rumour of Mr: Jay’s being further employed in negotiations for Peace is revived, and it has even been publicly said that he is gone to Paris.5 I have however already observed to you that I see no real prospect of Peace whatever
At Paris, the moderate party still maintain their ascendancy and the Jacobins are nearly dissolved to appearance. I retain however the opinion upon this subject, that I expressed in my Letter to you from London.—6 It is the effervescence of boiling water, which only subsides for a moment after overflowing. “Moderation” like all the other principles for these five years in that Country, is the watchword of a Faction, used to oppress another faction whose watchword was “terror.” Which ever of the two prevails will extinguish the other in blood. I should not be surprized to see within six months the Jacobins restored to all the plenitude of their power and glory; though at this time they are becoming from day to day more and more unpopular.
In England the Parliament is prorogued to the 30th: of this month, and will probably be so until the 21st: of the next. The trials for hightreason have all terminated triumphantly for the prisoners. The war becomes burdensome and unpopular; the administration is illsorted and discordant, the people are clamorous for Peace, and the Government decided for War.
In this Country, the States of all the Provinces have recommended Negotiations for peace. The Government party pretend that they are going forward: the patriots think that they are the only persons with whom France will treat, and they most devoutly hope that the first article of the pacification may prescribe the extirpation of the present ruling power.
Though we have no Letters from America, our intelligence is as late as the beginning of November, from thence and we are happy to find it agreeable. Peace, Prosperity, and Happiness, inseparable in their nature; that they may be all enjoyed by our Country is the most fervent wish of, Dear Madam, your affectionate Son.
[signed] John Q. Adams.
RC (Adams Papers); internal address: “Mrs: Adams.”; endorsed: “J Q Adams 13. / Decbr 1794.” LbC (Adams Papers); APM Reel 126. Tr (Adams Papers).
1. JQA wrote several letters of introduction for Gen. John Skey Eustace, who was returning to the United States from France via the Netherlands. JQA provided letters to AA, { 304 } William Smith, Christopher Gore, and Harrison Gray Otis, all of 11 Dec., and to Samuel Cooper, of 16 Dec., among others (Lb/JQA/2, APM Reel 126). For a full discussion of Eustace’s activities, see TBA’s accounts in his Diary at M/TBA/2, 15, 17, 18 Nov., 11 Dec., APM Reel 282.
2. Although the French Army was initially stopped at the Waal River, cold weather in late December allowed the army to cross the frozen river successfully and resume its campaign further into the Netherlands. Meanwhile, the city of Mentz (Mainz), on the Rhine, had already changed hands twice during the French revolutionary wars. The French initially captured it in 1792, but it was recovered by the Prussians in mid-1793. In the fall of 1794, the French armies of the Rhine and Moselle pushed toward the Rhine and began another siege of Mainz in December, which lasted until Oct. 1795 but ultimately failed to recapture the city (Schama, Patriots and Liberators, p. 185–186; Tony Jaques, Dictonary of Battles and Sieges: A Guide to 8,500 Battles from Antiquity through the Twenty-first Century, 3 vols., Westport, Conn., 2007; Cambridge Modern Hist., 8:437).
3. For Joshua Johnson, the U.S. consul in London and later JQA’s father-in-law, see JA, D&A, 2:300.
4. John Jay arrived in London in June 1794 to attempt to negotiate a treaty between the United States and Britain. He was tasked with preventing a war between the two countries and resolving longstanding disagreements over Britain’s continued presence in forts on American soil, payment to British creditors and American slaveholders, and American shipping neutrality. His goal, ultimately, was to obtain an Anglo-American commercial treaty. Jay began negotiations with William Wyndham, Lord Grenville, the British foreign secretary, almost immediately, and talks went on throughout the summer and fall. They finally reached agreement and signed the treaty on 19 Nov. (Stahr, John Jay, p. 313, 317–318, 320, 321–330).
The terms of the treaty included a complete withdrawal of British troops from U.S. territory, a joint survey to resolve various boundary disputes, a commission to determine recompense for both British creditors and Americans who lost property during the war, and a provision allowing for some U.S. trade with the British East and West Indies. For the full text of the Jay Treaty, see Miller, Treaties, 2:245–274.
5. The London Times, 25 Nov., reported that Jay was “about to set out from this country to Paris, on business of very great importance to this kingdom, and to all Europe.” Jay never went to Paris nor is there any indication he considered making the journey, though he did remain in Britain until spring 1795 in order to avoid a winter Atlantic crossing (Stahr, John Jay, p. 333–334).
6. See JQA to AA, 25 Oct. 1794, above.

Docno: ADMS-04-10-02-0195

Author: Adams, John
Recipient: Adams, Abigail
Date: 1794-12-14

John Adams to Abigail Adams

[salute] My Dearest friend

I wrote you last Week and inclosed an order for 600.1 Let me know when you receive it.
Although the Weather is the most beautiful I ever knew in December, the Time Seems longer to me, than ever any time did in America— The Business of Congress this session is Dulness Flatness and Insipidity itself.
Mr Cranch went off, on Fryday for Washington as he intended to go to Anapolis, I gave him a Letter to Mr Carrol of Carrolton.
I have been much engaged in Reading the Tryals of Muir, Margarot, Wat, Downie, and Walker.
Mr Walker of Manchester appears to have been very ill used by { 305 } the Church Party: but he was honourably acquitted. The others, I suppose could not be held guiltless, according to the Laws of scotland, and England. The severity however of their Sentences may excite rather than Suppress discontent and Mutiny.2 Selfcreated Societies, must be circumspect. It is very easy for them to transgress the Boundaries of Law, and as soon as they do they become unlawful assemblies, Seditious societies, mischievous Conventions, pernicious Associations, dangerous and destructive Combinations and as many such hard Appellations as you choose to give them.
I take it for granted that political Clubbs must and ought to be lawful in every free Country.— I belonged to several in my youth and I wish I could belong to one now. It would save me from Ennui, of an Evening, which now torments me as bad as the blue Devils would, if I had them, which by the Way I never had, and so cant say by Experience. Low Spirits and the blue Devils are not the Same.—
I think I will read Sweedenbourgs Works—3 I dare Say they are as entertaining as The Pilgrims Progress or Robinson Crusoe or the seven Champions.4 Any Thing that shows a strong and strange Imagination and is neither melancholly nor stark mad, is Amuzing. I fear the Atheistical and Theistical Philosophers lately turned Politicians, will drive the common People into Receptacles of Visionaries, Enluminees, illuminées &c &c &c For the Common People will undoubtedly insist upon the Risque of being damned rather than give up the hope of being Saved in a future State. The People will have a Life to come, and so will I.—
I fear you will think me a little crazy—so I / conclude Adieu
I send you an History of Geneva5
RC (Adams Papers); endorsed: “December 14 / 1794.”
1. See AA to JA, 11 Dec., note 3, above.
2. An Account of the Trial of Thomas Muir … for Seditious Practices, Edinburgh, 1793; The Trial of Maurice Margarot, before the High Court of Justiciary … on an Indictment for Seditious Practices, London, 1794; The Whole Proceedings on the Trial of an Indictment against Thomas Walker of Manchester, Merchant … for a Conspiracy to Overthrow the Constitution and Government, Manchester, 1794. Muir and Margarot, both members of the Friends of the People of Scotland, were found guilty and sentenced to fourteen years’ transportation to Botany Bay. Walker, the head of the Manchester Constitutional Society, was acquitted (Kenneth J. Logue, Popular Disturbances in Scotland 1780–1815, Edinburgh, 1979, p. 11, 15–16; Michael J. Turner, British Politics in an Age of Reform, N.Y., 1999, p. 89).
3. Emanuel Swedenborg, Extracts from the Theological Works of the Hon. Emanuel Swedenborg, London, 1794.
4. Richard Johnson, The Most Famous History of the Seauen Champions of Christendome, London, 1596.
5. See JA to CA, 13 Dec., and note 1, above.

Docno: ADMS-04-10-02-0196

Author: Welsh, Thomas
Recipient: Adams, John
Date: 1794-12-15

Thomas Welsh to John Adams

[salute] Dear Sir

Your Favor of Novr 19th I recd I have since mine of Novr 7th. found that Mr Dexter is not chosen, altho’ Mr Varnum who was put up by the antis makes but a small shew against him Mr Gerry having by far the greatest Number of Votes of any other Candidate but he declines being considered as a Candidate; it is true I believe that Mr Dearborn is not elected.1
Last Evening a Ship Capt Joy arrived from England after a Passage of 54 Days from Gravesend2 just before he sailed a Ship came to about two Miles above him which he believed and a Pilot who came on Board of his Ship told him was the Alfred from Boston after a Passage of 31 Days so I hope your two Sons have safely arrived at the first Place of Destination. but whether the Hague will be in a fit State to receive an Embasador I am not able to determine.
I have enclosed a Sermon of Mr Osgood of Medford as a Curiosity.3 I am now writing from Mr Hall’s Printing Office Mr Cooper came in he appeared not to come to purchase a Sermon as he was asked the Question he said no but he thought that Clergymen ought to know what they wrote and whereof they affirmed before they commenced political Authers and left the Shop quite in a Pelt Mr Hall Parsons Freeman who was standing at the Fire and myself at the same moment Avoued that the Sermon appeared to bite the Jacobins very keenly.4 I am Sr with Respect / Your Humble Sr
[signed] Thomas Welsh
1. On 6 Nov. Thomas Welsh wrote to JA to provide the results of Massachusetts’ elections. Besides reporting that Massachusetts governor Samuel Adams had voted for Charles Jarvis over Fisher Ames, Welsh also included the information that Samuel Dexter had been reelected (Adams Papers). On the 19th JA responded, lamenting Adams’ “Error” and hoping for a “peaceable Session” in Congress (MHi:Adams-Welsh Coll.).
2. The General Lincoln was co-owned by Melzar Joy, the vessel’s captain (Ship Registers of Dighton–Fall River, Massachusetts, 1789–1938, Boston, 1939, p. 48).
3. The enclosure has not been found but was Rev. David Osgood, The Wonderful Works of God Are to Be Remembered: A Sermon, Delivered on the Day of Annual Thanksgiving, November 20, 1794, Boston, 1794, Evans, No. 27456.
4. Samuel Hall (1740–1807) had previously published the New-England Chronicle and Salem Gazette, among other newspapers. At this time exclusively a book and pamphlet publisher, he was the printer of Osgood’s sermon. For Rev. James Freeman, see vol. 6:428–429, 431; JQA, Diary, 1:330.

Docno: ADMS-04-10-02-0197

Author: Adams, Abigail
Recipient: Adams, John
Date: 1794-12-16

Abigail Adams to John Adams

[salute] my Dearest Friend

Tomorrow will compleat three Months Since our dear sons saild, and this moment I have received a Letter from Town with this agreable intellegence, “on Sunday Evening the 14 Captain Joy arrived from England. just before he saild from the Downs, a ship came too about 2 miles a head, of him. the Pilot who came on Board Captain Joy told him she was the ship Alfred in 32 days from Boston.[”]1 tho I have no letters; yet to know that the vessel is safe arrived, has given me a pleasure which you will easily conceive and participate, and I seazd my pen instantly to communicate it to you. I pray God our dear Children may be safe and well.
I expect Letters from you tomorrow. mr Brislers Letter came to day inclosing a Bill of Laiding2 our people have compleated covering the Medow with sea weed, which is all that can be obtaind untill a North East wind replenishs our shores again. mr Brisler mentions a case & tells me it must not be brought up in a cart, but Does not say what the contents are. adieu I am / most sincerly & affectionatly yours
[signed] A Adams
RC (Adams Papers); notation: “N. B. This date should be 1794.”
1. Letter not found.
2. Not found.

Docno: ADMS-04-10-02-0198

Author: Adams, John
Recipient: Adams, Abigail
Date: 1794-12-16

John Adams to Abigail Adams

[salute] My Dearest Friend

I had flattered myself all the last Week with the Hope of a Letter on Monday: but when Yesterday came I found in the Door Keepers lodge of the Senate, no Letter for me, though the Post was arrived, and the other Gentlemen had their Letters. Disappointed, mortified, sometimes half resentful, but more often anxious and Apprehensive that you were sick, I passed but an unpleasant Morning: After dinner your Letter of the 6th. was brought to me in my Chamber, having been left with Mr Francis, I know not why, by one of the Presidents servants.
Callendars “Political Progress,[”] is a Part of a great System of Reform or Sedition, which made a great Noise in Scotland, and has { 308 } occasioned the transportation to Botany Bay of Muir, Margarot, & Gerald;1 a sentence of High Treason against Wat and Downie, &c &c.
Self created Societies are setting all Mankind together by the Ears. They will not cease in other Countries till they are laid aside in France, where they begin to be found inconvenient and to be thought dangerous. The popular Society of Caen resolved “We Acknowledge none but you for the Chiefs of the State: We own the national Representatives as the only point of rallying, and the People alone for sovereign. We Swear to be always faithful to the Convention. We will regard as the Ennemy of the People every Man who would rouse, near you, any Rival, insolent and usurping Authority.” Bache’s Paper tells Us it is The Spirit of the times to Support the constituted Authorities against all self created, usurping rival Pretensions.—2
Whether The French or the Dutch are Uppermost in Holland our Sons have nothing to fear: I hope in a month or six Weeks We shall hear from them.
Solus has it right— I want my Wife to hover over and about me.
I hope Shaws Yard and Joys Yard, are or will be fill’d with sea Weed as well as mine. The Business has gone on charmingly— dont forget your Daily or Weekly Chronicles of Farming.
As Dorothy has hitherto had only a peevish, fretful feeble Child for an Husband, I congratulate her on her opening Prospects of Advancement in the World, to the Arms of a generous, cheerful, good humoured, and able bodied Man. As the service of the People, according to modern Principles is no honour, Hopkintonianism in Politicks being the orthodox creed there can be no distinction between a Governor of a State and a Commander of a ship, except such as The Nerves confer. I suppose he has Property, which Added to hers will make their old Age comfortable and that is enough. Literary Taste, intellectual Joys, Delicacy of the Sense of honour, and Reputation are about equal. I am not censorious. Not I. As Governors Wife, like her Husband, she has been an unprofitable servant and has no Merit— Why then should she have any Pride or Ambition?—
The Weather has been so fine, that I hope Eames has Arrived with your Flour seeds and Medallion. I hope you will consent to request Ceracchi, to give that Image to Harvard or the Accademy.
Love & Duty. Adieu.
RC (Adams Papers); endorsed: “December 16. 1794.”
{ 309 }
1. Joseph Gerrald (1763–1796), originally from the West Indies, was yet another British political activist seeking parliamentary reform who was accused of sedition for a speech he gave at the British Convention of the Delegates of the People in Edinburgh in late 1793. Found guilty, he was sentenced to fourteen years’ transportation at Botany Bay, although he was not actually sent there until May 1795. Weakened by the voyage, he died only a few months later (DNB).
2. The Philadelphia Aurora General Advertiser, 15 Dec. 1794, reprinted a series of items “translated from the Official Bulletin of the [French National] Convention, of the 9th October” under the headline “SPIRIT OF THE TIMES.” They included reports from various departments, committees, and societies throughout France demonstrating support for the Convention and opposition to the “tyrant Robespierre and his accomplices.”

Docno: ADMS-04-10-02-0199

Author: Adams, John
Recipient: Adams, Charles
Date: 1794-12-16

John Adams to Charles Adams

[salute] My Dear Sir

This morning I received your favour of the 13th. and wonder not that your honest heart is disgusted at the Iniquities always practiced at the New York Elections, where I Suppose Lord Nugents Maxim is adopted, that “all Things are lawful at Elections.” This moral Aphorism he once alledged as an Apology for having once at an Election at Bristol, when his Lordship and Alderman Beckford were Competitors, dressed up an Effigy of Beckford as a Negro and carted it about the City, with the Cry in the mouths of his Mob “No Negroes” “No woolly hair”! An Artifice which his Lordship Said carried the Election.1
It is not unnatural that the Livingstones should acquire the Character of Democrats.— You may recollect the Family of The Medici. The Family of Cæsar, and as many other Families as have become Royal in the World. Every One of them became Supream by obtaining the Character of Democrats. The Family of Orange, have always had the Character of Democrats. So have the Family of Hanover and even the Family of Bourbon. An Oppulent and ancient Family will ever affect Popularity, when their Rival Family, and they always have one, are possessed of Places.
You are not alone in your Inclination to adhere to Mr Jay: but I am convinced he will not be here, in Season for your Election. Your independent Resolution to be no Party Man, is amiable and wise as well as honest. If you cannot fly upon Party Wings, which are but wax and are obliged to walk and that but slowly, you will be in less danger of having your feathers <singed> melted, and of falling, and you will advance the more Surely.— But why is not Jay as much a Livingstone as Hamilton is a Schuyler?2
{ 310 }
Elective Governments will forever be in a Struggle between two oppulent Families. Services, in an aweful Crisis and a dreadful War, are now pleaded with Some Success in favour of some Old Men, but when these drop off it will become chiefly a Contest of Wealth and Connections, and a pitiful despicable Scramble it will be.
As I crossed the North River, I was told, without Reserve by a very respectable Gentleman, that he believed Mr Clinton the richest Man in America; that he was immensely rich: and that Mr Burr, was also very rich: and Some others. Let no one see this Letter and never mention my name: but enquire into this and inform yourself how it could happen.
You did not mention the Baron. Let me know the News you have of him.
Self Created societies in Rivalry with the Elected Representatives of the People, are likely to occasion all public Events and to make all the History of Nations for sometime, and I therefore Advise you to read all the Tryals you can find. I have several to send you, which I pray you to read with Attention. I dread the Consequence of those which have already happened in Scotland England and Ireland.
In the Tryal of Mr Walker, the Speeches of Mr Law and Mr Erskine are Models of Eloquence for the Bar. Mr Law I heard on the Tryal of Mr Hastings in Westminster Hall— He has a Brother a Nabob, now in this City, who has purchased largely into the Fœderal City.3 The Tryals I shall send you will shew you, as well as popular Elections the Nature of a Party Spirit. deprecate & avoid it, as the Dæmon of Discord, Mischief & Malevolence.
RC (MHi:Seymour Coll.). Text incomplete due to a cut manuscript.
1. Robert, Earl Nugent (1702–1788), defeated Richard Beckford, a London alderman, for a parliamentary seat from Bristol in 1754 (Claud Nugent, Memoir of Robert, Earl Nugent, Chicago, 1898, p. 62–63). The election anecdote is recounted in Joseph Priestley, Familiar Letters, Addressed to the Inhabitants of Birmingham, in Refutation of Several Charges, Advanced against the Dissenters and Unitarians by the Rev. Mr. Madan, Birmingham, Eng., 1790, p. 13.
2. That is, because John Jay was married to Sarah Livingston while Alexander Hamilton’s wife was the former Elizabeth Schuyler.
3. Edward Law (1750–1818), 1st Baron Ellenborough, a lawyer, served as the chief counsel for Warren Hastings at Hastings’ corruption trial in the late 1780s and early 1790s. Law was later appointed attorney general for Britain. His brother Thomas (1756–1834) was one of the early speculators in District of Columbia property (DNB; vol. 8:xii-xiii; CFA, Diary, 2:123).

Docno: ADMS-04-10-02-0200

Author: Adams, John
Recipient: Adams, Abigail
Date: 1794-12-19

John Adams to Abigail Adams

[salute] My Dearest Friend

I promised you in my last an Account of the Commencement in the Methodists Meetinghouse north fourth st. near Vine street.1 But as a Bill which had some Allusion to the late Rebellion, and consequently interested the feelings of Parties, came on in Senate I could not get out of my Chair till three O Clock, and was therefore disappointed.2
I sent at once and bought the Books: but as I have made a free Use of the Post office of late I must not send them too fast.— I have read Lady Craven to day & Yesterday, with more Amusement than Edification.— I shall Stiffle myself with reading. The late Tryals in Scotland and England, have attracted my Attention very much. State Prosecutions of such Severity bode nothing good to Britain
Eames with your Flour and my Letter with an order are arrived before this I presume.
The Weather has been Spring like and fair along time. To Day it rains most abundantly. We expect cold after it.
Your last Letter had not one Word of Agriculture in it,—3 I hope my broad Wheels are under Salt Water—and that Joys Yard and shaws Yard are filled with Seaweed, and especially I hope that soft and Warm Beds are made of it for our Swinish Multitude in all our Yards.
Love & Duty. Adieu.
Can you find the Portraits of the Kings and Queens of England & France in the inclosed Riddle? Look upon the White upon the Edges of the Serpents and the Urn.4
RC (Adams Papers); endorsed: “Decbr / 19 1794.”
1. JA had informed AA on 18 Dec. (Adams Papers) that he planned to attend a female commencement. The commencement took place the same day attended by “the Lady of the President of the United States, the members of the House of Representatives of this state and of the United States, and a very respectable number of citizens.” Several young women presented orations and dialogues “with considerable grace and elocution. … An ode was also performed by the ladies on the future destinies of their country; eight of them having compleated their studies received honorary testimonials in the nature of diplomas” (Philadelphia Gazette, 20 Dec.).
2. On 18 Dec. the Senate was discussing “An Act to Regulate the Pay of the Non-Commissioned Officers, Musicians, and Privates, of the Militia, of the United States, When Called into Actual Service,” which was eventually enacted on 2 Jan. 1795 (Annals of Congress, 3d Cong., 2d sess., p. 802, 1490–1492).
3. That is, of 11 Dec. 1794, above.
4. Not found.

Docno: ADMS-04-10-02-0201

Author: Adams, John
Recipient: Adams, Charles
Date: 1794-12-20

John Adams to Charles Adams

[salute] Dear Sir

The inclosed Tryals of Muir, Margorot and Gerald, will afford you Entertainment and Information. as Nothing lays open the Spirit and Temper of the Times, better than the Criminal Proceedings in the Courts of Justice: I thought I could not send you a more acceptable Present.
The great Question whether a Part of the People may So far assume the Powers of Government, already delegated by the whole to the ordinary Legislative Executive and Judicial Authorities, as to appoint Deputies to meet in Conventions even for the Purposes of petitioning, or of instructing Representatives, will now receive a decision in more Nations than one. The Right of meeting in Societies, Sodalities or Clubbs, to converse, investigate, examine criticise, even the Measures of Government, or the Characters of Governors is one Thing. A Claim to meet for the Purpose of publishing Censures, or of opposing Measures or of writing Laws is another. A Pretension to meet by Proxies, for such Purposes is a third Thing.
If the French national Convention should put down Such societies, they will dwindle also in America.
King McClenican has come out to Day with a Manifesto against the President, senate & Representatives of the United States: and a few Days ago, appeared an Apology of the Society in Baltimore.1 I Suppose the Measure will go through and We shall see, the Eloquence and Learning of all the Clubbs in the Union
The Tryal of Gerald is the most valuable, of any I have yet seen. The Arguments of Mr Gilles and Mr Laing his Council are masterly Productions; Those of Mr Montgomery and the other Council for the Crown are ingenious, too—2 The Prisoners had all been to School,: Muir and Margarot to France: Gerald to Philadelphia.3
The Tryals of Sinclair, Skirving and Palmer I have not yet been able to procure.—4 My old Acquaintance, Lord Daer, son of the Earl of Selkirk I find was a Member of The British Convention, and the first to assume and bestow the Appellation of Citizen. He is a Man of Learning. He brought Letters to me in Paris and was treated with a good deal of Civility. I wonder he was not Sent to the Bay.5 But I Suppose that Transportation like kissing goes by favour.
The Papers announce to Us the Death of our Friend the Baron, { 313 } whom I Sincerely lament. The Importance of his services to this Country were not known to every One so well as to me.
I hope your Finger is better: and that your Business is brisk.
I am told there are many Runners and Riders in your State, employed to bring forward Mr Burr to the Chair.
Adieu, my Son. Write as often / as you can to your Father
[signed] John Adams
RC (MHi:Seymour Coll.); internal address: “Councillor Adams.”
1. Blair McClenachan (d. 1812), an Irishborn merchant in Philadelphia and later member of Congress, was president of the Democratic Society of Pennsylvania. On 20 Dec. the society released a statement excoriating George Washington’s attack on selfcreated societies in his address to Congress and railing against the “various charges and invectives, fabricated for the destruction of the Patriotic Societies in America.” Three days earlier, Philadelphia newspapers had published a similar defense by the Republican Society of Baltimore (Biog. Dir. Cong.; Philadelphia Independent Gazetteer, 17, 20 Dec.; Philadelphia Aurora General Advertiser, 17 Dec.).
2. JA was undoubtedly reviewing the trial transcript as printed in The Trial of Joseph Gerrald, Delegate from the London Corresponding Society, to the British Convention … for Sedition, Edinburgh, 1794. Adam Gillies (1760–1842) and Malcolm Laing (1762–1818), both Scottish lawyers, defended Joseph Gerrald. Sir James Montgomery (1721–1803), a Scottish judge, lord advocate, and former member of Parliament, argued the case against him (DNB). For more on the copies of Muir’s and Gerrald’s trials that JA sent to CA, see JA to CA, 31 Jan. 1795, note 3, below.
3. That is, both Thomas Muir and Maurice Margarot had spent time in France during the Revolution, and Joseph Gerrald had practiced law in Pennsylvania in the mid-1780s (DNB; M. Roe, “Maurice Margarot,” Bulletin of the Institute of Historical Research, 31:69 [May 1958]).
4. The Trial of William Skirving, Secretary to the British Convention … for Sedition, Edinburgh, 1794; The Trial of the Rev. Thomas Fyshe Palmer, before the Circuit Court of Justiciary … on an Indictment for Seditious Practices, Edinburgh, 1793. Charles Sinclair’s trial was not published as a separate pamphlet but the record of it does appear in T. B. Howell and Thomas Jones Howell, comps., A Complete Collection of State Trials and Proceedings for High Treason and Other Crimes and Misdemeanors, 33 vols., London, 1809–1826, 23:778–802. Palmer and Skirving were both found guilty and sentenced to transportation to Botany Bay, but the case against Sinclair was eventually dropped (Kenneth J. Logue, Popular Disturbances in Scotland 1780–1815, Edinburgh, 1979, p. 15–16).
5. Basil William Douglas, Lord Daer (1763–1794), the eldest son of Dunbar Douglas, 4th Earl of Selkirk, was living in Paris at the beginning of the French Revolution. He was a member of the London Friends of the People and various other reform societies (Henry W. Meikle, Scotland and the French Revolution, Glasgow, 1912, p. 106).

Docno: ADMS-04-10-02-0202

Author: Adams, Thomas Boylston
Recipient: Adams, John
Date: 1794-12-20

Thomas Boylston Adams to John Adams

[salute] My dear Sir.

The rumor’s of peace have almost totally subsided; those still in circulation deserve as little credit, as they generally receive. The hope is still cherished, and even encouraged by the Government here, merely to silence the importunate demands of many of its { 314 } adherents. In a former letter I mentioned the report then current, that a cessation of hostilities had been agreed to, by the armies in this neighborhood.1 The occasion of this rumor, which was premature, was the actual suspension of military movements on either side, for the space of four weeks, but the subsequent activity of the french in renewing with the utmost vigor their martial operations, seems to determine the error of the report. On the 11th: instt: aided by an impenetrable fogg, the french army under General Pichegru attempted to take the City of Mentz by assault five times repeated, but each with the same ill success. At the same time there was an ineffectual effort to cross the Waal in three different places, but they were every where repulsed. Their decided superiority of force must shortly surmount this obstacle, which will compel the British Troops to evacuate this territory somehow or other.
As a consequence of the cessation of peaceful rumors, the prospect of another campaign becomes the order of the day.
That the combination will be diminished, either by the obtainment of peace, which the ruling power in the National Convention has avowed itself disposed to grant to all but Great Britain, or by actual conquest on the part of France, is the general belief. But the last effort is yet to be made, and without almost miraculous intervention, it must terminate like all that have preceded, in disgrace, accumulated oppression, & final defeat.
The latest intelligence from Paris, brings the account of the fresh triumph of Moderateism, as it is called over the Jacobin faction, in the decree of Accusation against Carrier. It passed the Convention almost unanimously, and like many other unanimous votes, numbers who gave it their sanction, have signed their own death warrants.2 No system will or can be permanent, having Moderation for its basis, while there exists a faction, determined on its destruction, & willing to risque their own existence on the issue. “Almost any man,” says Dr Priestly, and every other observing mind, “may command the life of another, if he make no difficulty in sacrificing his own.”3 The factions in france, are but an aggregate comment upon this fact. I know not what purpose in the order of creation, these Millions of human Sacrifice are ordained to answer. If they should eventually teach wisdom to mankind, and induce them to impose the proper checks upon their passions, the end will be in some degree porportioned by its salutary effects, to the desperate, & melancholy operation of the means. But that experience is dearly bought, which threatens anihilation in the attainment.
{ 315 }
I have hitherto omitted to give you a detail of our private pursuits and occupations. It is necessary occasionally to be a little garrulous about oneself. For the most part, our time is spent in domestic retirement. Bellona has expelled the Muses & the Graces from the public, & we are induced to hold converse with them only in private.4 My Brother has purchased something of a Library, by attending Public Sales, which are frequent in this place; this affords us occasional relaxation from Official functions, and we hope e’re long to be tolerably skilled in Diplomatic mysteries.
I begin to find the french language tolerably familiar to me. I cannot speak it with fluency, but shall not fail to make myself master of it in time. The little knowledge I had acquired of the German, has proved of some utility, I can make myself understood in this language better than any other but my own, as yet; though the occasions for using it are seldom.
The Country, & particularly the Cities I have yet seen, are beyond my expectations in point of magnificence. The Inhabitants, like all money making people, are more attentive to the main chance than social intercourse; but I have no reason to complain of a failure of hospitality towards us. The Climate has not yet impaired my health, but I have seen two or three frightful foggs, thick enough to disseminate agues in abundance. I adhere as much as possible to the regimen of exercise, but am not always at liesure to pursue it. I am not the less convinced of its necessity, and shall proportion my efforts to persevere, to the exigency of the Climate.
I take the liberty to enclose to your care, three numbers of the Leyden Gazette,5 and to request that after reading them your self, you will be good enough to dispatch them to my brother Charles at New York. I hope he will be as punctual in the performance of his engagement, as I endeavor to be in discharging mine.
I also enclose a letter for Mr Ingersoll, which you will oblige me by sending to him.6
With a proper share of filial affection & duty / I remain / your Son
[signed] Thomas B Adams.
RC (Adams Papers); internal address: “The Vice President, &ca”; endorsed: “T. B. Adams. Decr. 20 / The Hague.”
1. Not found.
2. Jean Baptiste Carrier (1756–1794), a French lawyer and member of the National Convention, had been responsible for various atrocities while suppressing counterrevolutionaries in Brittany and Nantes in 1793–1794 during the Jacobin reign. He was tried, found guilty, and guillotined on 16 Dec. (Bosher, French Rev., p. xxix).
3. Joseph Priestley, Lectures on History, and General Policy, Birmingham, Eng., 1788, Lecture LVI, p. 441.
{ 316 }
4. Bellona was the Roman goddess of war (Oxford Classical Dicy.).
5. Not found.
6. Not found.

Docno: ADMS-04-10-02-0203

Author: Adams, John
Recipient: Adams, Abigail
Date: 1794-12-23

John Adams to Abigail Adams

[salute] My Dearest Friend

Monday, which is the pleasantest day of the Week, because it always brings me a Letter, produced me your favour of the 12th.
I am ready to purchase for you, the other half of the Medford Farm, if it is to be Sold, or to advance my your1 half for Building, if it is not. I think you are right not to sell. keep it as a Remembrancer. Paternal Acres are always good Land.
What may be Hamiltons Views I know not: but I Suppose he cannot live here, nor can any other, but in a Style altogether unsuitable to his Station. The Petulance of the People, will fatigue every Man out of his Life, if they continue to be goaded by Seditious Societies. The People will be compelled, either to dismiss their Congress or to restrain their Clubbs.— I dont mean to hang, or transport to Botany Bay the Members of these Societies as the English and Scotch have done: nor to banish, imprizon or hang as the Canton of Berne has done: but to discountenance and discourage their assemblies.
I have read the Jacobiniad— A Statesman must not be a Satyrist, a Poet, nor a Wit.— but a “Sad Man.”
Your Farmers Calender refreshes me like a Cordial. The Weather here is Still so Spring like, that one almost forgets the Season We are in.
It has been reported here that Mr Fauchet is to be recalled, how truly I know not.— They will never Send a Man who will do them more honour or better service
I dined Yesterday with Thommy Shippen, and his pretty little Puppet of a Wife— The poor fellow is as pale and lean as a ghost.— They have two little Boys.— Mrs Livingston was there.2
To return to Jacobinical societies. is it not abominable. To see a Crew headed by Such an ignorant blundering, thick-sculled Irishman as Blair McClenican, publishing their Manifestoes against the President and both Houses of Congress?
I send you Bennetts strictures. Louisa’s Book I will send as soon as I have read it.
RC (Adams Papers); endorsed: “Decbr 23: / 1794.”
1. JA interlined the word “your” over the word “my.”
2. Elizabeth Carter Farley (1774–1826) of Virginia married Thomas Lee Shippen in { 317 } 1791. Together they had two sons: Thomas Lee Jr. and William. Mrs. Livingston was likely Thomas Lee Shippen’s sister Ann Home Livingston (1763–1841), who was separated from her husband, Henry Beekman Livingston (Randolph Shipley Klein, Portrait of an Early American Family: The Shippens of Pennsylvania across Five Generations, Phila., 1975, p. 211–214, 219, 332; “Descendants of Col. Richard Lee, of Virginia,” NEHGR, 26:62 [Jan. 1872]).

Docno: ADMS-04-10-02-0204

Author: Adams, Abigail
Recipient: Adams, John
Date: 1794-12-24

Abigail Adams to John Adams

[salute] my Dearest Friend

I received your kind favour of the 5th 7th 8th & 10th. what you mention with respect to the sale of the Farms in the Neighbourhood, may be true for ought I know. Mr Black is really in earnest to dispose of his. a Gentleman was up last week to look at it, but thought the price too high. as to the other, I am sure he is not happy here. he has not sufficient Farm to occupy his time here, and as soon as he has compleated all his Buildings he will be still more misirable. he has no resource within himself 4 or 5 sons to Educate, or put into Buisness. it would not be surprizing to me if he should sell provided a purchaser appeard.1 commerce flourishes so surprizingly, not with standing the “depredations of unreasonable despoilers—” that I presume these Gentlemen are solicitious to put their property to a better use, than delving in the Earth, merely to get a daily sustanance. I should however be sorry to have them leave the Neighbourhood, as they are good Neighbours.
You inquire after mr Wibird. he vegetates, without courage, without Spirit, without resolution. he visits his old Friends some times, but has not been out to meeting once. mr Briggs continues to preach.2 by his means I have had the pleasure of hearing mr Harris & mr Ware. in short we shall be so nice soon, that we shall be willing that mr Wibird may go & sleep with his Ancestors. I went to see uncle Quincy the other day he was as well as usual— our Clergy many of them attackd the self created clubbs in their Thanksgiving Sermons, before the President & senate, denounced them. Mr Ware of Hingham, mr Gardner of Boston, and mr osgood of Medford— whose sermon was printed. I have been so much pleasd with the perusal of it, that I have sent to purchase a couple, and in the mean time have taken Brother Cranchs to forward to you. Mr Ames has not spoken with more force or Energy, than mr osgood has preach’d against these Anarchist’s. mr osgood has taken particular notice of the Govenours Proclamation for Thanksgiving, and given him a well { 318 } merritted repremand, for his total neglect of the National Government, and asscribed it I believe to the true source.3
Mr Cranch desires me to thank you for your kind attention to his Son. I hope some arrival will soon bring us good News from ours— we see so little way before us—that I think it best to submit all futurity into the hands of the great Disposer of events, who has directed us not to be anxious over much “to enjoy is to obey”4 I will therefore with gratitude reflect upon the large portion of comfort and happiness which has fallen to my lot, without repineing at that which is denyd me.
Eames is arrived. tomorrow I shall send for my flower & Seed
I am obliged to make use of the credit left me. I did not know that an Appropriation was necessary till March, and I had engaged to discharge some accounts to my Tennants to the sea weed carters Black smiths &c the middle of the Month—so that for a week past I have been affraid to hear a rap at the door least it should be a dun.
Remember me to Mrs Washington most affectionatly. I respect & Love that good Lady you have never said a word about Frèire & his Lady. I presume you have exchangd visits.5
I have been reading Mores 2d volm Journal, and what surprizes me is, that when Robertspears Character was so justly appreaciated & his views suspected, that he was able to gain such an assendency, & to rule so despotically for two years after the death of the King—6 a Man who appeard so unpopular as he was in the convention—it must have been oweing to the assendency of the Jacobines & the Mountain.
The spirit of Faction has received a wound, happy would it be for America if it was a Fatal one. The Presidents frown, the Senates supporting him and, the spirit of the people in marching against the insurgents all has conspired to Stiffle the Flame, even the Chronical can barely find fuel
adieu I am with the tenderest affection / ever Yours—
[signed] Abigail Adams
RC (Adams Papers); endorsed: “Mrs A. Decr 24. 22. / Ansd. 30. 1794.”
1. Capt. Benjamin Beale, JA’s neighbor, had six living sons: Benjamin (1768–1826), Richard Copeland (1773–1807), Robert (1778–1803), Joseph (1780–1800), George Washington (1782–1851), and Thomas Smythe (1787–1815) (Sprague, Braintree Families).
2. Probably Rev. Ephraim Briggs (1736–1799), Harvard 1764, who was the longtime Congregational minister at Halifax, Mass. (Sibley’s Harvard Graduates, 16:30–31).
3. On 15 Oct. Samuel Adams issued a proclamation naming 20 Nov. the annual day of thanksgiving in Massachusetts (Evans, No. 27280). In David Osgood’s thanksgiving sermon, he reviewed the proclamation section { 319 } by section. While Osgood generally agreed with the items Adams cited as worthy of thanksgiving—good health, prosperous agriculture and fisheries, successful commerce, and “the inestimable blessing of the Gospel, and our Religious, as well as Civil Rights and Liberties”—Osgood took issue with Adams’ failure to make specific reference to the federal government. Osgood commented, “This omission is strange and singular, beyond any thing of the kind that I recollect to have seen since the first union of the states in the memorable year 1775. It has, to say the least, a strong appearance of disconnection with the general government, and an air of separate sovereignty and independence, as though we enjoyed not our civil rights in union with the other states under one common Head” (p. 16).
4. Alexander Pope, “The Universal Prayer,” line 20.
5. Ciprão Ribeiro, Chevalier de Freire, arrived in Philadelphia in Oct. 1794 as Portugal’s minister resident to the United States. He was presented to George Washington and Edmund Randolph on 30 Oct., while his wife, Agnes Frances Lockyer, was introduced to Martha Washington on the 31st. The Freires had married in London in 1791, and the Adamses had known them during their own time in England (Philadelphia Gazette, 13 Oct. 1794; Philadelphia Gazette of the United States, 1 Nov.; The Register Book of Marriages Belonging to the Parish of St. George, Hanover Square, ed. John H. Chapman, 4 vols., London, 1886–1897, 2:62; vol. 8:367, 368).
6. John Moore, A Journal during a Residence in France, from the Beginning of August, to the Middle of December, 1792, 2 vols., London, 1793.

Docno: ADMS-04-10-02-0205

Author: Adams, John
Recipient: Adams, Charles
Date: 1794-12-24

John Adams to Charles Adams

[salute] Dear Charley

Our Patriots are so anxious lest Aristocracy should take root, that I wonder they do not eradicate all the seeds of it. instead of Addressing Mr Speaker, they should address Freddy Mulenbourg— instead of talking of the Gentleman from Virginia they should quote Billy Giles &c &c &c
The Purity of this Symplicity has always appeared among Insurgents. In Chaises and Bradfords Patriotick Efforts I dare say that Gaffer and Gammar, Mr and Mrs were laid aside.1
There is an historical Poem or Chronicle of the Insurrection in the Reign of Richard the Second, written by Sir John Gower, in which this delicious Naivete, this beautiful Simplicity is perfectly preserved. The Title of the Poem is Vox clamantis.
The following Catalogue of the Leaders of the Insurgents is inimitable, but it ought as far as possible to be imitated, by our modern Insurgents.

Watte vocat, cui Thome venit, neque Symme retardat,

Bitteque, Gibbe, Simul Hykke, venire jubent.

Colle furit, quem Gibbe juvat nocumenta parantes,

{ 320 }

Cum quibus ad damnum Wille coire vovit.

Grippe rapit, dum Daive Strepit, comes est quibus Hobbe

Lorkin, et in medio non minor esse putat.

Hudde ferit quos Judde terit, dum Tibbe juvatur

Jakke domos que viros vellit, et ense necat &c &c.2

When this or something like it, Shall be adopted as a Model for the Debates of our Legislators, We may hope that We shall be out of Danger of Titles and Aristocracy.
This must be quite a Secret between you and me: but I will laugh a little with my Children at least, at the Follies of the Times.
Adieu
RC (MHi:Seymour Coll.).
1. That is, Daniel Shays of Shays’ Rebellion in Massachusetts in 1786, and David Bradford of the recent Whiskey Rebellion. Bradford (b. ca. 1760), a lawyer and deputy attorney general for Washington County, Penn., became one of the leaders of the rebellion. In Oct. 1794 George Washington’s troops were ordered to arrest Bradford, but he escaped into the wilderness and eventually made his way to Louisiana, where he lived out the remainder of his life (Slaughter, Whiskey Rebellion, p. 183–185, 216, 267).
2. Wat calls, Tom comes to him, and Sim does not loiter behind. Bet and Gib order Hick to come at once. Col rages, whom Geff helps to do damage. Will swears to join with them for mischief. Grigg grabs, while Daw roars and Hobb is their partner, and Lorkin intends no less to be in the thick of things. Hudd strikes while Tebb threatens those whom Judd tramples on. Jack tears down houses and kills men with his sword (John Gower, Vox Clamantis [The Voice of One Crying], ch. 11, in The Major Latin Works of John Gower, transl. Eric W. Stockton, Seattle, 1962, p. 67).

Docno: ADMS-04-10-02-0206

Author: Adams, John
Recipient: Adams, Abigail
Date: 1794-12-25

John Adams to Abigail Adams

[salute] My Dearest Friend

This being one of the pleasant Days of the Week, Thursday the Post brought me your kind Letter of the 16th.— The News of The Alfred was written me the Day or next Morning of its Arrival in Boston by our ever kind and attentive friends Dr Welch and Mr Smith, and I should have instantly written it to you, with great Joy if I had not known, that you must have had it, much sooner than I from the Same Sources. Although there is a feeling of Disappointment, accompanies the Intelligence, arising from not having any direct Account of our sons, yet the high probability of the Safe Arrival of the ship, is a great Consolation. I congratulate you upon it, with cordial Sympathy, and join with you most Sincerely in your devout Ejaculation for the health & safety of our sons.
{ 321 }
The Case mentioned in Brislers Letter contains the Marble Medallion as brittle as it is elegant.
The Weather is as beautiful, as mild, soft clear and wholesome as can be imagined: but We had lately a North East Wind and Rain, which I hope has thrown up, on the shores of Quincy a fresh supply of Seaweed. I want to have the mowing ground opposite to Pennimans and Hardwicks upon Pens hill covered with it, if possible
I am delighted with the Activity and Energy with which the affairs of the farm have been conducted, since I left you— a few years of Such Exertions will make the Place productive of most of the Necessaries of Life for Us and I hope We shall be indulged with the quiet Enjoyment of it for as many Years as We can be useful to our Country our Friends or ourselves.
I have been to Church at Dr Ewings and heard a good sermon. Mrs Otis & Mrs Betcy are well.
The News of my Mothers Health and Activity is in a high degree delightful to me— My Duty to her
inclosed is a Book, a present for Louisa. a pretty Book it is.— a good Book.— I have very little fault to find with it, of any kind. His opinion of Grecian Taste in Arts & Literature are so exactly like my own, that he makes me regret, deeply regret, that the Avocations of my Life, have not permitted me, to pursue it with So much Attention as I always desired: but still more than I have not had Opportunity to impress it upon my sons, as I ought. They have better Opportunities and Means than I had.
RC (Adams Papers); endorsed: “Decbr 25. 1794.”

Docno: ADMS-04-10-02-0207

Author: Adams, John
Recipient: Adams, Charles
Date: 1794-12-25

John Adams to Charles Adams

[salute] Dear Sir

Your Letter of the 22d, alledging Business as an Apology for not writing gave me more Pleasure than a long Letter would have done.1 Business is always an Apology, for declining Pleasure or Amusement of any kind. I Sent you, by a late Post other Tryals, Geralds, Muirs and Margarots. Geralds is worth all the rest. Mr Laing, the Council for Gerald is I Suppose the Same with Malcolm Laing Esqr who finished the Sixth Volume of Dr Henrys History of Great Britain, at the Request of his Executors.
This History I purchased Yesterday in Six Volumes. it is on a new Plan, which is very good. The whole Work is divided into Ten Books { 322 } and each Book into Seven Chapters. Each Chapter presents the Reader with the History of one particular Object. The 1st Chapter contains the civil and military affairs. The 2. The History of Religion. The 3. The History of the Constitution. The 4. Learning & Learned Men. 5. The Arts. 6. Commerce and Navigation, Money &c. 7. Manners Customs &c2
as far as I have read I am much pleased with it.
There is News of the Arrival at the Downs of The ship Alfred which carried your Brothers, which is a great Satisfaction, though We have no Account direct from them.
Your Gazettes bring the Baron to Life again, I hope truly: though the Accounts of his Death were so little doubted that the senate left his Pension out of the Appropriation Bill, I thought rather prematurely. There has been a handsome Character of him in one of the Papers of this City which I was glad to see.3
As your Business increases your Studies must increase, and both will require an Application, which without daily Exercise will be dangerous to your health. The Law, is an engaging, interesting Study. No Man ever really read that is with Attention one Lawbook without desiring to read more. Hale Coke, Plouden Mansfield, Foster, Blackstone, and many others are all Sensible Men, with whom it is impossible to keep Company without learning Something.4 Such Conversation is of the best kind.
If your Business will allow you, sometime in January to come and Spend a Week with me, I will bear your Expences, coming, going and while here. looking at Congress a Week, dancing once at the Assembly, going to one Levee and one Drawing Room will be an Amusement and not without Profit & Instruction.
I am affectionately
[signed] J. Adams
RC (MHi:Seymour Coll.); internal address: “Charles Adams Esqr.”
1. Not found.
2. A copy of Robert Henry, The History of Great Britain, Written on a New Plan, 2d edn., 6 vols., Dublin, 1789–1794, is in JA’s library at MB (Catalogue of JA’s Library).
3. The first New York announcement of Baron von Steuben’s death appeared in the Diary, 17 December. On 24 Dec. the same paper printed a longer obituary, outlining his military accomplishments and noting that his “name will be ever dear to the citizens of the United States, as long as virtue and patriotism shall be respected.” The Philadelphia American Daily Advertiser, 25 Dec., printed a long piece on Steuben signed Amicus, claiming, “There are very few living to whom this country is more obliged, for its Independence, and the happiness it now enjoys.”
4. Edmund Plowden, Commentaries of Edmund Plowden, London, 1571; Sir Michael Foster, A Report of Some Proceedings on the Commission of Oyer and Terminer … and of Other Crown Cases, Oxford, 1762.

Docno: ADMS-04-10-02-0208

Author: Adams, Abigail
Recipient: Adams, John
Date: 1794-12-26

Abigail Adams to John Adams

[salute] my Dearest Friend

I fear you will think me tardy in not acknowledging sooner the Receipt of your Letter of the 11th with the order upon the Bank for 600 dollors, but tho I sent to the post office & wrote to mr Hastings, I was told that the Post had brought no Letters for me.1 Since the establishment of a Post office in Quincy the Letters are sorted & put up for each office, so that a Letter comeing in of a Wednesday, I cannot get till thursday Noon, which makes it impossible for me to reply or answer till the next Mondays post which is the reason you some times miss of a Letter when you expect one. for be assured however barren my letters are, nothing Short of a sickness confineing me to my Bed & the loss of my Hands will prevent me writing once a week to you; the Letter you mention brought by the Presidents Servant, must as sometimes used to happen have been by mistake, taken for the President;
I enjoy at present as much Health as usual; having done Pennance for a Month. I did not however suffer so severely as in times past. I was first seiazd upon my Lungs with a Hoarsness a cough, & fever followd; all my complaints are of an inflamitory kind. I got better, and went below stairs was attackd with the intermitting & confind a fortnight longer—yet I did not omit writing you; tho I would not make you uneasy by letting you know that I was sick— I think I feel better now than I have done through the fall or winter, and have been less troubled with the pain in my Head. I do not like to hear you complain so much of Lowness of spirits. a Cheerfull Heart doth good like a Medicine2 Zimerman may prate about the blessings of solitude, but Man was not made to be alone;3 I must say to you, as Lord Lyttleton wrote to his Father, “suffer not a depression of spirits to rob you of that pleasing hope which both Supports & nourishes. think less of those circumstances which disquiet you,” and rejoice in those which ought to gladden you consider the reputation you have acquired, the Glorious reputation of integrity. Imagine that your Posterity will look upon it, as the Noblest fortune you can leave them, and that your Childrens, Children will be incited to virtue by your example.4 Here I will transcribe the overflowings of a gratefull, Heart from a letter this Moment received. “When did You hear from my dear Brother Adams—Patron of his Country & Friend of the Fatherless. how was his great soul moved, tenderly { 324 } Sympathizing with his poor Bereaved Sister. his compassionate looks made an indeliable impression upon my mind. Pilgrimages are out of date, or I could go Barefoot to Mecca, or any where else, to honour him. he did not satisfy himself with ineffectual wishes, of ‘Be ye warme’d, & be ye cloathed[] but was kindly relieved my mind by assisting me with means to Educate william. when I reflect upon this instance of his Pity & Generosity and of the kindness of my other Friends, I cannot find words to express the gratefull Sense I have of their favours.”5
Your Letters of December the 14th and 16 came by the post of the 24th together with the Book and pamphlet, but I have not received a News paper since the 8 of December—I know not the reason. if Congress have so little buisness upon their Hands, I hope they will do it in season & do it well. is there no pleasure but in troubled waters? Mr osgoods sermon has run through two Editions, and the Printer says he never had such a demand for a sermon in his Life. the Chronical writers attack it, but mr osgood will not notice any one who does not Sign their real Name.6 I was mistaken in my Idea respecting the Poem call’d the Jacobiniade. it is upon the same plan, but not half so keen or severe. the second Number convinced me of my mistake.
I shall purchase the pew— I had not taken any money of Genll Lincoln. I was to have it on saturday, but I have informd him that I have no occasion for it. I am sorry to say that I shall be obliged to purchase Hay for the Horses— the Calender of the week past may be comprizd in carting sea weed & spreading it. I have had the peice of ground next mr Bass oposite your Brothers coverd this week, but tis slow work to cart it so far as the other place—and two loads is the most which they can accomplish tho the weather is the finest I ever knew in December. our people are constantly Employd. I will say to you in my next Something respecting the Medallion. when you wrote me of a Medallion in Marble, I thought it had been of the size of a Crown peice Such as I have seen abroad.
I long to hear from our dear Children but my Heart was several pounds lighter when I heard the vessel was safe arrived. the Baron I see by the papers is no more Charles has lost a valuable Friend, and will be a sincere mourner for him—
Mr Cranch desires me to thank you for your kind attention to his Son. our Friends are all well. Your Mother is as well as I have known her for several winters— my Love to Mrs otis, & cousin Betsy { 325 } I think often of mrs Smith & mrs otis & hope to learn agreable tydings from each of them7
Mr & Mrs Storer mr & Mrs Smith the Dr & mrs Welch & old Aunt Edwards made up a party the day before Christmass and dinned with me.8 Aunt Edwards says she shall not forget the May day in december the middle of the next Century. the Rose Bush under the window is leaving out, the bunches of clover are quite as lively as may, & the Grass is changed. adieu julia is as cheerly and as playfull as ever, but will not sit or lye upon the settee—
I am with every Sentiment of the tenderest affection ever yours
[signed] Abigail Adams
RC (Adams Papers); endorsed: “Mrs A. Decr 26. Ansd. / Jany. 5.”
1. Jonathan Hastings Jr. (1751–1831), Harvard 1768, had been Boston’s postmaster since 1775. He would continue in that post until 1808 (Sibley’s Harvard Graduates, 17:29–32).
2. Proverbs, 17:22.
3. Johann Georg Zimmermann, Solitude Considered with Respect to Its Influence upon the Mind and the Heart, London, 1792.
4. AA quotes to this point from Sir George Lyttelton’s letter to his father, Sir Thomas Lyttelton, 18 Aug. 1728, printed in Elegant Epistles; or, A Copious Collection of Familiar and Amusing Letters, ed. Vicesimus Knox, London, 1790, Letter 129.
5. The letter from Elizabeth Smith Shaw has not been found. The quotation within the quotation is from James, 2:16.
6. The Boston Independent Chronicle published essays attacking David Osgood’s recently published thanksgiving sermon in both its 22 and 25 Dec. 1794 issues. On 22 Dec. “A Friend to the Clergy, and an Enemy to Ecclesiastical presumption” accused Osgood of issuing “an insidious attack on a republican form of government” and of speaking “with the utmost indifference, of the cruel, wicked, and tyrannical measure of those despots” who previously ruled France. A similar piece appeared on 25 Dec. under the author “A Friend to Decency and Free Inquiry,” along with a brief squib suggesting that the need for a second printing of Osgood’s sermon was due only to its being given out gratis rather than to brisk sales.
7. Mary Smith Gray Otis gave birth to a second daughter, Mary Ann, on 27 Dec.; see JA to AA, 28 Dec., below. AA2 gave birth to her fourth child and first daughter, Caroline Amelia Smith, on 28 Jan. 1795; see JA to AA, 1 Feb. 1795, below.
8. Hepsibah Small Edwards (1717–1817), widow of Boston silversmith Joseph Edwards, was an aunt to AA by virtue of the 1740 marriage of AA’s grandmother, widow Abigail Fowle Smith, to Joseph’s father John (NEHGR, 67:298–299 [July 1913]; American Church Silver of the Seventeenth and Eighteenth Centuries with a Few Pieces of Domestic Plate, Boston, 1911, p. 44, 48; Greenfield, Mass., Franklin Herald, 30 Dec. 1817; Salem Essex Register, 3 Jan. 1818).

Docno: ADMS-04-10-02-0209

Author: Adams, John
Recipient: Adams, Abigail
Date: 1794-12-28

John Adams to Abigail Adams

[salute] My Dearest Friend

I went on Fryday night with Mr Storer to the Drawing Room, where the Warmth of the Weather increased by a great fire and a Croud of good Company, gave me one of my annual great Colds. The Same Evening the large Lutheran Church in our old { 326 } Neighbourhood took fire and was burnt down.1 The next morning Mrs Otis was brought to bed and the Mother and the Daughter are very well.
So much for News good and bad.
The Weather continues very moderate: but the old Adage a green Chrismas makes a growing Church Yard, or a fat Church Yard as the various readings have it, is a damper to its Pleasures. Our Country is not yet sufficiently drained, for these warm Winters. Cold Weather is necessary to confine, or kill the putrid deleterious vapours, which Arise from uncultivated forests and undrained Marshes.
Parson Osgoods Sermon makes a great Noise here.— What Says The Governor to his Share of the Whipping?
The Clergy of New England have trumpetted Paine and Robespierre, till they begin to tremble for the Consequences of their own Imprudence. Did Mr Wibirt in complaisance to the Proclamation omit the national Government?
Old Men Say that time flys faster and faster every year. if I concur in this Observation it must be when I am at Quincy. Here my moments are long and slow. I read my Eyes out, and cant read half enough neither.— The more one reads the more one sees We have to read—
An horrid Journey of 3 or 400 miles, before I can get home lies before me like a mountain.
Charles has lost his Friend Steuben— I have written to him a great many Letters: but I can get only a line in Answer. At one time he says he has a Witlow on his Finger at another he is very busy. This is good news. I have invited him to come and Spend a Week with me in January if his Business will allow.
I have bought the Tryals of the Scotch Jacobins, and sent them to him as Presents. They are in the Way of his Profession and will be both Entertainment and Information to him. Self Created societies in Switzerland, England & Scotland, dont come off with a gentle rap over the knuckles in a Speech or a sermon: but they promote their Members to the Cord or to Botany Bay, to Banishment Transportation or Death.
The Mildness of our Government is a pleasing delightful Characteristic: and although it will probably give Encouragement to some Disorders, and even some daring Crimes, it is too prescious to be relinquished without an Absolute Necessity.
{ 327 }
Have my Mother with you as often as possible and tell her I hope to see her again in two months
Adieu
[signed] J. A.
RC (Adams Papers); endorsed: “December 28 1794.”
1. The German Lutheran (or Zion) Church at the corner of Fourth and Cherry Streets, an “immense and elegant building … one of the most splendid in the Union,” burned down the evening of 26 December. Almost immediately, the church began collecting donations to rebuild, and a new church building was consecrated in Nov. 1796 (Philadelphia Gazette of the United States, 27 Dec. 1794; J. Thomas Scharf and Thompson Westcott, History of Philadelphia, 1609–1884, 3 vols., Phila., 1884, 2:1421, 1424).

Docno: ADMS-04-10-02-0210

Author: Adams, Charles
Recipient: Adams, John
Date: 1794-12-30

Charles Adams to John Adams

[salute] My Dear Sir

I have to acknowledge the receipt of your letters accompanying the trials of Gerrald Muir and Margarot. I am perfectly of your opinion that Gerrald’s is worth all the rest, his defence is able eloquent and pathetic. Muir also discovers marks of a great mind Posterity will give very little praise to the independence or candour of Scotch Judges. In a former letter you ask why I suppose Mr Jay less a Livingston than Hamilton a Schuyler. I beleive you could answer that question much more satisfactorily than myself. Whatever influence the agrandizement of one’s family may have on men yet it would be looking too much on the dark side of the picture of human nature to suppose that every man would give up honest principles to attain their objects. Mr Jay is an object of envy to the Livingstons he is an outcast from the family a circumstance which as much as any other raises him in my opinion I should acquiesce in the Government of Mr Hamilton Yet I do not think it derogatory to his character to say I prefer Mr Jay.
Governor Clinton Colo Burr Pierpont Edwards and others hold meetings in which not only business of election is transacted but also matters which concern their private interests. Clinton is the channel through which all applications are made to the land office for the purchase of the very valuable lands belonging to the State. McComb purchased four millions of acres some few years since at a very triffling rate.1 The late disclosure of his affairs did not disclose who were his copartners there was a certain share not inconsiderable for which an owner could not be found. It has been proved that much greater offers were made for this tract of land than McComb gave. People reason in this way Gov Clinton when he came to the { 328 } Chair was worth nothing. He now owns lands in every part of the State. How does it happen? Mr Burr preys like a vulture upon the pockets of his Clients; in his family he knows no bounds to profusion. Mr Burr has lately made a large purchase of lands. More than one person have expressed ideas to me which this line from Juvenal will convey. “Consumtis opibus, vocem Damasippe locasti.”2 I beleive notwithstanding the great virtue of Americans that French gold has and may yet do much harm—
You may well suppose that I write in confidence Such suggestions are not to be published to the world without proof. When however we hear such insinuations we are naturally lead to enquire into the possibility and practability of things of this nature.
With sincere affection I am your son
[signed] Charles Adams
I shall consider of your proposal of visiting Philadelphia
RC (Adams Papers); addressed: “The Vice President of the United States. / Philadelphia”; endorsed: “Charles A Decr 30 / 1794. Ansd 2 Jan. 1795.”
1. For Alexander Macomb’s land dealings, see vol. 9:281. For the New York land office and George Clinton’s involvement therein, see JA to CA, 2 Jan. [1795], below.
2. “Consumptis opibus vocem, Damasippe, locâsti / Sipario, clamosum ageres ut Phasma Catulli” (Thy riches consumed, thy voice, Damasippus, thou hast hired to / The stage, that thou mightest act the noisy Phasma of Catullus) (Juvenal, Satires, transl. M. Madan, 2 vols., Dublin, 1813, Satire VIII, lines 185–186).

Docno: ADMS-04-10-02-0211

Author: Adams, John
Recipient: Adams, Abigail
Date: 1794-12-30

John Adams to Abigail Adams

[salute] My Dearest Friend

Your favr of 24th marked by the Post office 22d of Decr. I recd. Yesterday.
Mr Osgoods sermon was plenty here— I recd one from Boston before.— The Clergy I think ought to pray for the national Government.— If our Dissenting Ministers will not at Quincy I will go to Church, where a form is prescribed by Authority which even Mr Cleverly complies with.
Within a Day or two after your last I presume you recd an order for 600, which will enable you to repay what you have borrowed.
Mrs Washington Mrs Cabot & Mr Cabot desire me to send you their Regards &c.
Not one Word about the Farm in this last Letter, a fatal omission— Tell Joy I <expect> hope to see my Cattle fat, though he works them hard.—
Now come great Things. Knox is to go out tomorrow. He insists { 329 } on beginning the Year 1795 a freeman. He told me Yesterday, he had been 20 Years (next April) in service. that if he should die, tomorrow his Wife & Children would not have enough to live on two Years— That he had not above ten Years to live— that he had the means at the Eastward of making Something and that it was his Duty to do it.
This Man is capable of flattering himself with hopes that to others appear Chimerical— He is capable of thinking himself popular enough in Massachusetts to be chosen Governor at the first Vacancy— But I suspect he cherishes another hope, that is of being Governor of Maine—1 These however are hints between you and me, & to go no farther.
Another Gentleman Yesterday let me read in his Heart without suspecting it— Mr Cabot told me, he thought he should not come again to senate—2 Mrs Cabot was averse to coming this time. He had Difficulty to persuade her— He thought she would not come again and if she declined he would not come without her. You know my Opinion of the Motive of his removal to Brooklyne. His Resignation will be in pursuance of the Same Views. But I cannot help thinking he will be disappointed. I know of no Man, who would make a better Governor, at least among all those who are likely to obtain the Place— But his services have not been known enough to the People to sink into their hearts. His fortune is not Splendid enough to dazzle: and he is not at the head of any interested Bank or Company whose Exertions can bring him in.— I pitty these ambitious Men! By joining with Gill he might be chosen Lt. Govr for wt I know.
But the Man the most to be pitied is the President. With his Exertions, Anxieties Responsibilities for twenty Years without fee or reward or Children to enjoy his Renown to be the Butt of the Insolence of Genets and Clubbs is a Tryal too great for human Nature to be exposed to— Like The Starling he cant get out of his Cage3 but Knox says and I believe it, he is Sick very sick in it— I could tell you a great deal more but this must be reserved for a Tête a Tête.—
Dont forget the farm next time
Adieu
RC (Adams Papers); endorsed: “Decbr 30 1794.”
1. Henry Knox lived another twelve years though not long enough to see Maine achieve statehood. Upon his initial retirement from national service, Knox and his wife returned to a large estate in Maine with an impressive mansion and considerable land but also substantial debt incurred from land speculation. In time, he made strides toward paying it off but still failed to leave his widow a comfortable settlement upon his { 330 } death in 1806 (Mark Puls, Henry Knox: Visionary General of the American Revolution, N.Y., 2008, p. 223–226, 228–229, 239, 243–248).
2. George Cabot did not resign at this time; he would retire from the Senate two years later in mid-1796 (Biog. Dir. Cong.).
3. A reference to the caged starling in “The Passport. The Hotel at Paris” in Laurence Sterne’s A Sentimental Journey through France and Italy.

Docno: ADMS-04-10-02-0212

Author: Adams, John
Recipient: Adams, Abigail
Date: 1795-01-01

John Adams to Abigail Adams

[salute] My Dearest Friend

I wish you a happy New Year, and a Repetition of happy New Years as long as Time shall endure: not here below, because I shall want you in another Country, better than this.
What do you say? shall I keep a national Thanksgiving with you?1 I hope before that Day We shall have good News from all our Family, tho We cannot be all together.
Compliments of the Season to Louisa & all my good friends. Dont forget my farm next time you write. I hope to find a Letter at the senate Chamber
Adieu
1. On 1 Jan. the president issued a proclamation designating 19 Feb. as a national day of thanksgiving and prayer, in order for Americans to “meet together and render their sincere and hearty thanks to the great Ruler of nations, for the manifold and signal mercies, which distinguish our lot as a nation, particularly, for the possession of constitutions of government, which unite, and, by their union, establish liberty with order; for the preservation of peace, foreign and domestic; for the seasonable control, which has been given to a spirit of disorder, in the suppression of the late insurrection; and, generally, for the prosperous course of our affairs.” Published first in the Philadelphia Gazette of the United States, 1 Jan., the proclamation appeared in Boston newspapers the following week, beginning with the Federal Orrery, 8 January.

Docno: ADMS-04-10-02-0213

Author: Adams, John
Recipient: Adams, Charles
Date: 1795-01-02

John Adams to Charles Adams

[salute] Dear Sir

I have received your Letter of December 30th.— I approve of your caution and applaud your discretion. You ought nevertheless to reconoitre the Country round about you, like a good officer. Between you and me, I believe you to be Surrounded by a gang of sharpers, and I wish you to keep a good look Out, preserve your own honour; keep a clear Conscience and clean hands: but examine every Man and every Thing. You will Soon be respected in this Course, even if you stand alone. Is there any Land Office? Where is it kept? in what House? or other Building? Who are the Land Officers? Who is the { 331 } Man or who are the Men, who have by Law Authority to sell Lands? What is that Law & when was it made by which those Persons are impowered to sell? Is there any Land Book? that is to say any Volume or Volumes of Records in which grants, Deeds or Conveyances of Land are registered? Is this Office, and are those Books publick? has every Citizen a right to examine those Records? to take Copies, paying for them &c.? There are honest Men about you, no doubt.1
It would be worth your while, to make an Inventory of Clintons Lands. Enquire in what Part of the State he has Lands? When he purchased them? How much he gave for them? of whom he bought them? What Quantity of Acres in a Parcel? <improve> cultivated or wild?— Information of every kind should be sought with Ardour by a Young Man.2
You need not recurr to the Supposition of foreign Gold to account for the other Mans Wealth. if I am rightly informed, he made an hundred Thousand Pounds, by a purchase and a Sale of Lands. I know not the Mystery.
If Professions of Simplicity & Republicanism and Democracy & sanscullotism & Jacobinism &c are a sure Way of making Plumbs Per soltum, We shall have Professors enough. Look about you charles and be neither sharp nor Dupe
[signed] J. A.
RC (MHi:Seymour Coll.).
1. The New York Land Office Commission was established in 1784 to dispose of bounty lands to Revolutionary War veterans. The commission, which met in New York City, was composed of the governor, lieutenant governor, speaker of the assembly, secretary of state, attorney general, treasurer, and auditor, and with the exclusion of the governor, three commissioners were required to execute a land grant. In March 1791, after a near halt in land sales, the state legislature expanded the discretionary powers of the commission, which subsequently approved 35 grants, totaling 5.5 million acres and generating just over one million dollars in revenue, all in the span of five months.
This flurry of activity drew the attention of George Clinton’s Federalist opponents, who levied allegations of misconduct and misappropriation toward the governor during the 1792 election. Clinton won reelection and subsequently solicited and published affidavits from several of the grantees, denying his participation or financial benefit. In Nov. 1793, a jury further exonerated Clinton in a libel suit he brought against William Cooper, one of his more vocal detractors. The stigma of misconduct, however, persisted in Federalist circles (John P. Kaminski, George Clinton: Yeoman Politician of the New Republic, Madison, Wis., 1993, p. 195–197; Young, Democratic Republicans, p. 233–234, 237–239).
2. Clinton was a savvy land speculator who chose productive farm lands or small parcels in locations primed for development. Many of his investments were made in partnership and were managed in such a way that initial outlays were recouped within a few years, while the balances were held as investments. During and after the Revolutionary War Clinton substantially increased his land holdings through speculative purchases of undeveloped land along the frontier. The largest was a multi-partner investment in a 40,000-acre tract in Oneida County; another included a 6,000-acre parcel in the Mohawk River Valley near Utica, for which Clinton partnered with George Washington in 1783. Clinton, largely as a result of his success as a land speculator, left an estate valued at { 332 } $250,000 (Kaminski, George Clinton, p. 14, 51–52, 249–250; Alan Taylor, William Cooper’s Town: Power and Persuasion on the Frontier of the Early American Republic, N.Y., 1995, p. 156–157; Young, Democratic Republicans, p. 35–36).

Docno: ADMS-04-10-02-0214

Author: Adams, John
Recipient: Smith, Abigail Adams
Date: 1795-01-02

John Adams to Abigail Adams Smith

[salute] My Dear Daughter:

I received this day your kind letter of the 30th ult.2 With cordial affection and sincerity do I reciprocate your compliments of the season, and wish you and yours many happy returns of these pleasant anniversaries.
There has lately been published extracts from a Journal of Brissot, in which, as upon many other occasions, there has appeared a disposition to give to Mr. Jay as much of the honour of the peace as possible, and to take away from your papa as much of it as possible. Mr. Jay is represented as insisting on an acknowledgment of our independence antecedently to treating, and as bringing me over to his opinion.3 Mr. Jay’s commission was in autumn of 1782. In July, 1781, more than a year earlier, and indeed before Mr. Jay had anything to do with peace,—before the commission was issued by Congress, in which Mr. Jay was united with me in the negotiations for peace, the enclosed letters were written by me to the Count De Vergennes, received by him, and transmitted by me to Congress, received and read by them, and now stand recorded in the office of the Secretary of State.4 By these you may judge whether Mr. Jay brought me over to his opinion, or whether I brought him over to mine; whether I joined with Mr. Jay, or Mr. Jay joined with me.
God forbid that I should deny Mr. Jay’s merit in that business, or diminish his fame. All I desire is, that my children, if they should ever have any tenderness for their father’s character, may know where to look for the means of maintaining it. Show these letters to Col. Smith and to your brother Charles. And if either Col. Smith or your brother think it worth while to show them to Mr. Webster, in confidence, they have my leave to do it.
I am, my dear child, / Your affectionate
[signed] John Adams.
MS not found. Printed from AA2, Jour. and Corr., 2:113–114.
1. The dating of this letter is based on WSS’s letter to JA of 9 Jan., below.
2. Not found.
3. Jacques Pierre Brissot de Warville’s Nouveau voyage dans les États-Unis de l’Amérique septentrionale, 3 vols., was originally published in Paris in 1791. The first two volumes appeared in translation in New York in 1792 and in London in 1794 in single volumes entitled New Travels in the United States of { 333 } America. In the work, Brissot related an anecdote about the attempt of the Comte de Vergennes, the French secretary of state for foreign affairs, to convince the American peace commissioners “that the independence of America should not be considered as the basis of the peace; but, simply, that it should be conditional. To succeed in this project it was necessary to gain over Jay and Adams. Mr. Jay declared to M. de Vergennes, that he would sooner lose his life than sign such a treaty; that the Americans fought for independence; that they would never lay down their arms till it should be fully consecrated. … It was not difficult for Mr. Jay to bring Mr. Adams to this determination; and M. de Vergennes could never shake his firmness” (1794 edn., p. 114).
The extracts appeared in a defense of John Jay, originally published in the Virginia Gazette, 10 Dec., and reprinted in the Philadelphia Gazette of the United States, 20 December. For more on the original article, see Hamilton, Papers, 20:36–38.
4. For JA’s letters to the Comte de Vergennes of 13, 16, 18, 19, and 21 July 1781, and his letters to the president of Congress of 14 and 15 July, all dealing with the terms of negotiation of an Anglo-American peace and American acceptance of the Austro-Russian mediation, see JA, Papers, 11:413–417, 418–422, 424–430, 431–434. Congress received these items on 3 Oct. (JCC, 21:1032).
Jay was appointed to the joint peace commission on 13 June 1781, but JA did not receive word of that appointment until August; for a discussion of the decision to expand the peace commission and its full text, see JA, Papers, 11:368–377.

Docno: ADMS-04-10-02-0215

Author: Adams, Abigail
Recipient: Adams, John
Date: 1795-01-04

Abigail Adams to John Adams

[salute] my Dearest Friend

I received by our Thursday Post, yours of Decbr 18 & 23 together with the Bennets Strictures.1 you may be sure Bennet is a favorite writer with me for two reasons. the first is; that he is ingenious enough, to acknowledg & point out the more than Egyptian Bondage, to which the Female Sex, have been subjugated, from the earliest ages; and in the Second place; that he has added his Mite, to the cultivation, and improvement of the Female Mind. much yet remains to be done. there is however more attention paid to the Education of Females in America, within these last 15 years than for a whole centry before, and the rising Generation will be benifitted by it. Conjugal fidelity holds the first place in the Rank of Female virtues, and whilst that Source is uncorrupted, we may hope to See the united efforts of Parents exerted towards the improvement & cultivation of the minds & morals of their ospring regardless of the Sex, affording to each an Education to qualify them to move with honour & dignity in their proper Sphere.
you promised me an account of the Female Commencment. was you dissapointed? either in your expectations or in your attendance?
I wrote you not long since a request that you would Subscribe for Fennos paper for mr Cranch as Post Master Since that I have not received a paper from Fenno, nor has mr Cranch received one as Post Master. I do not know how the act Stands, or whether you are { 334 } subject to postage for a News paper. as post Master mr Cranch is entitled to the News paper post free: it would come regularly to him. he would have the reading of it, and I too. I lose the greater part of the debates by not seeing Fennos paper— a small proportion only is retailed to us in our Boston papers—
How insolent and impudent are the Jacobines of Pensilvana? they have adopted the very stile and language of the French Jacobines, and they breath the Sentiments of the Southern incendaries in Congress— Judge Lowel askd mr Bowdoin, how in his conscience he could vote for Jarvis? why he replied I do not like his politicks, and I despise the Man, but I have been neglected and slighted by the other Party—! such is the Patriotism of the World. how little Sterling integrity! how hard the lesson to divest one of self interest. the world however see through the veil, and it is oweing to this same Self Love, that the Man has been neglected. neither his Fathers Patronage, nor his own ample fortune have been able to raise him higher than state Senator—and there with such principals may he remain—
Winter has sit in with Rigor a flight of Snow Succeeded by cold, an inclement week we have not much to relate in the way of Buisness— getting wood, and some attentions at home, have occupied our people this week we want Snow. to day we have a heavy Rain mixt with sleight & snow— the Broad wheels are under water. the Scow—is laid up for the winter; the cable brought home; not so much Sea weed, in Joys Yard as I could wish—nor Shaws. the reason is that Quincy Meddow is coverd & 8 load upon a small spot next mr Bass—and the Scarcity of the article. our Teams have been as far as Horse neck after it. if the weather permits every opportunity will still be embraced. the persons you hired carted as long as they could find their account in it, and I have paid them 40 Dollors wanting a few shillings—40 odd for the cart wheels—& repairing the others— the pew I have a deed of, and have paid 46 pounds— I have paid to my Men & Women Tennants their 3d quarter, and, a number of Small matters; I have paid up Copland. the Time for which I engaged him expires on Monday. he tells me that his Family must want if he cannot get employ through the winter that he has 5 children, but one of which is old enough to put out and She so weakly as to be unfit.2 there are only two Months before we must necessarily have an additional Hand on account of the canker worm & other things. I have offerd to hire him for the Year from the first of Janry. { 335 } I believe he will stay. I tell them they must bring a great deal of work to pass— Sea weed they Say makes but little show—and wood burns up—
Shaw is a very excellent hand he has hurt himself and for a fortnight has been unable to do much Stooping under the cart to do something to an Axeltree. the cart tipd up upon the small of his back, brought him to the Ground & set him to Spitting Blood—
“o be thou blest with all that Heaven can send”3 / is the New Years benidiction / of your ever affectionate
[signed] A Adams
RC (Adams Papers); endorsed: “Mrs A. Jan. 4 Ansd / 16. 1795.”
1. On 18 Dec. 1794 JA wrote a brief letter to AA noting his surprise at her failure to receive his regularly sent letters and informing her that he would attend a female commencement ceremony. He further mentioned a visit with an Englishman who carried a letter of introduction from Thomas Brand Hollis, dated 26 Aug. (both Adams Papers).
2. Samuel and Ruth Whitmarsh Copeland’s children were Ruth (b. 1785), Eliza (b. 1787), Thomas (b. 1789), Samuel (b. 1792), and Nancy (b. 1794) (Warren Turner Copeland, The Copeland Family: A Copeland Genealogy, Rutland, Vt., 1937, p. 139).
3. Alexander Pope, “To Mrs. M. B. on Her Birthday,” line 1.

Docno: ADMS-04-10-02-0216

Author: Adams, John
Recipient: Adams, Abigail
Date: 1795-01-05

John Adams to Abigail Adams

[salute] My Dearest Friend

By this Days Post I have your Letter of the 26. Ult. I believe that some incomprehensible sympathy or other, made me low Spirited all the time you were Sick, tho I neither knew nor suspected it. I rejoice to be inform’d of your Recovery.
If I were not afraid of every Change in your Situation, that might endanger your health, I would plan a Project for next Winter: but I must leave that for a Tête a Tête.
To a heart that loves Praise so well and receives so little of it your Letter is like Laudanum which Mr Henry The senator Says is the Divinity itself.1
The French Convention has passed a Number of Resolutions for the Regulation of Jacobinical Clubbs or Self Created societies, founded in eternal Reason, perpetual Policy, and perfect Justice, which every other Nation must adopt, or be overthrown.2 I wish Mr Osgood and every other Minister would preach a sermon once a Quarter expressly on that Text.
Affiliations Combinations, Correspondences, Corporate Acts of such societies must be prohibited. A Snake with one head at each End, crawling Opposite Ways must Split the snake in two unless { 336 } one head is so much stronger than the other as to draw drag3 it along, over thorns and stones till it looses it headship. so the King of Frances Constitution Acted.— A Man drawn between two Horses is a neat image of a Nation drawn between its Government, and self Created societies Acting as Corporations and combining together
Hay for the Horses I know you must purchase and I always expected it—buy the best and enough of it.
The Weather is here this Day as fine as you describe the day before Christmas when our Friends were so good as to visit you. bright clear mild—farmers ploughing every Where. Letters from Connecticut say the Cankerworm Millers & Sluggs are going up the Appletrees. Tar our Trees in the Garden and see if you catch any.
There is an unusual calm and dearth of News at present. Most important Events are expected to be imported by the first Vessells. I am myself much inclined to doubt whether the French will get to Amsterdam. There are Obstacles in their Way very serious, and which may be made invincible. Amsterdam may be defended by an Inundation. Even without an Inundation it is capable of a good defence—a strong Wall—a Wide deep Ditch—a numerous Artillery—and I am not willing to believe that the People are asleep or will be idle. I am, with / the tenderest of all sentiments / ever yours
[signed] John Adams
RC (Adams Papers); endorsed: “Janry 5th / 1795.”
1. John Henry (1750–1798), Princeton 1769, was a lawyer and Maryland politician, having served as a delegate to the Continental Congress and then as a state senator. He was elected to the U.S. Senate in 1788 (DAB).
2. On 3. Jan. 1795 the Philadelphia Gazette of the United States printed news from Paris, dated Oct. 1794, in which the French National Convention set out eight articles identifying self-governing societies as subversive and undemocratic. The decree outlawed popular societies, prohibited collective petitions, and required that both the leaders and the members of existing groups be identified to authorities. These actions followed in the wake of the Jacobin collapse in July and the subsequent rise to power by the Thermidorian regime (Bosher, French Rev., p. 202–203).
3. JA interlined “drag” immediately above but failed to cancel the word “draw.”

Docno: ADMS-04-10-02-0217

Author: Adams, Abigail
Recipient: Adams, John
Date: 1795-01-08

Abigail Adams to John Adams

[salute] my Dearest Friend

yours of 25 December reachd me with the Book for Louissa. through the Month of December the weather was uncommonly fine, but the New Year is very inclement. we have had a fair day or two only since it commenced, very little Snow & what Snow we had, { 337 } is all leaving us to day, by a plentifull Southerly rain our people have been engaged where the weather Would allow this week in the woods. I have had my wood cut by them this Winter in what is call’d Beals Lot. they go to the Top of the Hill cut it, & pitch it down. the weather has been moderate & if we had snow this could not be done as the Hill is high rocky & Steep, nor would any persons Do this, if hired to cut by the cord. I am soliticious to get sufficient for the winter and summer— I shall be only second in command by & by yet I think I am more solicitious to have the commands of my Principal executed in his absence, than when he is present.
If you see the Chronical you may read the address of our Massachusets Self created Society. it is much more respectfull and Modest than the Pennsilvania address—and is not badly pennd I presume Morten was the Draughtsman.1 it is however false, and artfull. I read it last Evening in my Neighbour Beals paper— they are all Galld that the President Denounced them, but let any person attend to the horrid Scenes produced in France by the unlawfull combinations of the worst & most profligate part of Society, and say if a Similar Spirit does not excite & actuate the Jacobins of America to insurgency and rebellion—
I have not heard from mrs smith since November. Charles wrote me, but did not mention his Sister2 What is the proper address to our son. how does the Secretary of state address his Letters.3 I have been writing to him, and addrest to JQA minister Ressident &c has a minister Ressident the title of Excellncy?
Remember me to mrs otis & cousin Betsy—
affectionatly Yours—
[signed] A Adams
RC (Adams Papers); addressed: “vice President of the / united states / Philadelphia”; endorsed: “Mrs A. Jan. 8 / ansd 16. 1795.” Filmed at 8 Jan. 1794.
1. On 5 Jan. the Boston Independent Chronicle published a statement by the Massachusetts Constitutional Society defending the right of popular societies to exist. Offering a thoughtful rebuttal to the president’s State of the Union address, which had denounced them, the society desired to “state at large the motives which induced us to assemble—the opinions we have uniformly held, and to reply to such objections as appear to us to be entitled to a serious refutation.” The address was signed by the society’s president, William Cooper, not Perez Morton, whom AA presumed to be the author.
For the address by the Democratic Society of Pennsylvania, which first appeared in Boston in the Federal Orrery, 1 Jan., see JA to CA, 20 Dec. 1794, and note 1, above.
2. AA2’s letter to AA has not been found; CA’s is at 11 Dec., above.
3. On 5 June 1795 Secretary of State Edmund Randolph referred to JQA’s appointment as “Minister Resident of the U.S. to the Hague.” Otherwise Randolph typically addressed JQA by name; see his letters to JQA of 29 July, 13 Aug., and 8 Nov. (all Adams Papers).

Docno: ADMS-04-10-02-0218

Author: Adams, John
Recipient: Adams, Abigail
Date: 1795-01-08

John Adams to Abigail Adams

[salute] My Dearest Friend

I dined yesterday with Mr Hammond the British Minister who told me that Mr Dunlap1 had just received a Dublin Paper of the 25th of October, which he had Seen and read, in which was a Paragraph to this Effect, “Mr Adams appointed Minister Resident from the United States of America to the states General had arrived in London and contradicted the Report of a Battle between General Wayne and Governor Simcoe.”2 I hasten to give you this account, though I have not yet seen the Paper, knowing your own Anxiety by my own. I congratulate you upon this corroboration of the Account of Captain Joy of the Arrival of The Alfred at the Downs.
The Chevalier de Freire and his Lady are very well. He desires me to send you his Compliments— She is a very pretty and agreable Woman. I am to dine with them in Dr Franklins House where they live, on the 14th.
The Weather continues here as pleasant as May.
Adieu
1. For Philadelphia printer John Dunlap, see JA, Papers, 3:212. In 1795 Dunlap published the American Daily Advertiser with his partner David C. Claypoole (DAB).
2. John Graves Simcoe (1752–1806) was the strongly anti-American lieutenant governor of Upper Canada. During the summer of 1794, as Maj. Gen. Anthony Wayne advanced American troops toward the U.S.—Canadian border, Simcoe urged British officials to declare war. A decision to avoid military action was made in July but took several months to arrive in Upper Canada and silence Simcoe (Dictionary of Canadian Biography, 15 vols. to date, Toronto, 1966–2005, 5:754–759; Alan Taylor, The Divided Ground: Indians, Settlers, and the Northern Borderland of the American Revolution, N.Y., 2006, p. 268–269, 287).

Docno: ADMS-04-10-02-0219

Author: Adams, Abigail
Recipient: Adams, John
Date: 1795-01-09

Abigail Adams to John Adams

[salute] my dearest Friend

By our Quincy post I received yours 28th and 30th of December. I am sorry to find you had taken a cold let Brisler make you a Bowl of wine whey when you go to bed, for one or two Nights, and you will find yourself released
Altho the weather has been so very fine and Spring like, our cattle never have been sharpend till this week. yet I cannot but keep in mind that it is mid winter, that Grain would not Grow if it was { 339 } planted. my Farmers are some weeks, confined to one object, and then there is little to be related. the providing fuel for a Family for the year whose summer consumption is so great, is no Small Buisness— and tho I have the use of two Teams—Ezara Shaw very seldom can go more than once a day with his, having a large Stock to attend to night & morning, and not having the greatest force within himself— Joy tho not so large a stock has the same care I consulted your Brother respecting the Lot from which I had best procure my wood, and he advised me to the mountain which You bought of captain Beal, the wood there being old, & requiring Several hands to pitch & role it down Hill, as neither Sled or cart could assend it.1 I have taken into consideration that the winter is the only proper time to get the wood, and that I ought to have so much as not to be obliged to seek for it in the Summer or fall when other Buisness require all the Hands—and that you will be at home much earlier in the spring when you will occupy your Hands and Teams in other Buisness— the Moment however that Snow comes, the woods will be left, to draw Stones the Ground has not through the winter been so frozen as to cart the Stones from the common which are heapd for the purpose or to sled the manure from Joys Barn.
I rejoice with mrs otis in her safety. my Love to her. I wish I could hear the Same good News from mrs Smith. []a Man of Galantry should never think a journey tedious which carries him to his Home”
Genll Knox may flatter him self that he will become rich if he retires, but He will find the old Proverb true, that he must ask his wifes leave “with her tastes & habits.”2 “Green feild, and purling Streams, and Larks and Nightingales”3 would be odious things. she cannot ri[se] till the Sun has reachd his mid day career. the Wife of a Farmer must look well to the ways of her Household, and neither eat the Bread of Idleness herself,4 or permit others too. I do not know any Lady less calculated for Retirement. contentment must always derive its scource from the Heart. Luxery, ambition and avarice know no bounds, and desire is a fathomless abyss— Mrs Morris reads Zimmermann upon Solitude, & builds a palace in a city.5 The President from the bottom of my Heart I commisirate. I consider him the Great sacrifice for the Good of the People, and I feel my Share of gratitude towards him, but his Reward as well as all others who have been placed upon the high Towers, and the Battlements, and have stood firm and unshaken at their posts, are to be received { 340 } in a state more congenial to their virtues, even with the Spirits of Just Men made perfect.
The conduct of the Democratic Society in Boston and their sentiments expressd in their address to the societies throughout the union, is exactly as far as circumstances will admit, like the Jacobines in France toward the convention see the French account publishd in the Centinal of Janry 7th “after the fall of Robertspierre— their meetings ceased for several days at last they come together and felicitate the convention upon the fortunate discovery of the conspiracy, and Fate of the Traitors and declare themselves Devoted to the Principals of the Revolution6
“Thus the Democratick society declare their attachment to the Government, their abhorrence to any acts of voilence against the law, which they say can scarcly be justified under any circumstances. the Society are opposed to every outrage of this nature, not only from Principal, but from policy, for it is impossible that any system of social improvement can be embraced, either as to the Government or its administration, amidst that tumult of passions, which such commotions have a direct tendency to produce” but the whole of the address is full of the Hypocritial cant, and the fangs of the Tiger appear, ready to seize upon the first lucky minuit and the only modesty they make a shew of, arrises from the, [“]suppression of the late Rebelion, and the State of Parties in France”7
I quit them for a Topick much more agreeable, that of assureing You of the Sincere / and affectionate Regard of / Your
[signed] A Adams
RC (Adams Papers); addressed by Louisa Catharine Smith: “The Vice President of the / United States / Philadelphia”; endorsed: “Mrs A. Jan. 9 / ansd 20 1795.” Some loss of text where the seal was removed.
1. Possibly a ten-acre woodlot that JA had purchased from Capt. Benjamin Beale Sr. in May 1772 (Adams Papers, Wills and Deeds).
2. “A man must ask his wife leave to thrive” (John Ray, A Compleat Collection of English Proverbs, 4th edn., London, 1768, p. 45).
3. Isaac Bickerstaff, The Tatler, 11 April 1710, reprinted in The Tatler by Isaac Bickerstaff, Esquire, 4 vols., London, 1794, 3:184.
4. Proverbs, 31:27.
5. Johann Georg Zimmermann, Solitude Considered with Respect to Its Influence upon the Mind and the Heart, transl. J. B. Mercier, Phila., 1793.
6. AA paraphrases from an article on the “State of French Politicks,” which appeared in the Boston Columbian Centinel, 7 Jan. 1795.
7. Here, AA loosely quotes from the address by the Massachusetts Constitutional Society, published in both the Boston Independent Chronicle and the Boston Gazette, 5 Jan., for which see AA to JA, 8 Jan., and note 1, above.

Docno: ADMS-04-10-02-0220

Author: Smith, William Stephens
Recipient: Adams, John
Date: 1795-01-09

William Stephens Smith to John Adams

[salute] Dear Sir

Mrs: Smith has shewn me the Letter you wrote on the 2d. inst. with the Copies of those you presented to The Count DeVergennes The extract from Brissots Journal I noticed, and really think there is a greater combination to deprive you of the tribute due to your services, than I ever noticed pointed against any Individual—1 I think it a duty you owe yourself and Country, to resist it, & this can be effectually done, by publishing a few of your Letters— those you have now sent, will fully do away the observation of Brissot— will you give me leave to publish such extracts as are in point, I think it will do good—but I will not attempt it without your permission, Mrs: S. & The Boy’s are well
I am Dr. Sir Your most Obedt: / Humble Sert.
[signed] W: S: Smith
RC (Adams Papers); internal address: “The Vice President / of The U. States—”
1. Extracts from Jacques Pierre Brissot de Warville’s memoir, for which see JA to AA2, 2 Jan., and note 3, above, were also reprinted in the New York American Minerva, 23 Dec. 1794, and New York Herald, 24 December.

Docno: ADMS-04-10-02-0221

Author: Adams, Abigail
Recipient: Adams, John Quincy
Date: 1795-01-10

Abigail Adams to John Quincy Adams

[salute] my Dear Son

I wrote to you by Captain Scott Some time in December.1 on the 14 of the Month Captain Joy arrived in Boston, after a passage of 63 days. by him we learnt the agreable News of the arrival of the Alfred, in a passage of 32 days. to know that the ship was arrived, was a relief to my mind. to have heard from my dear sons, would have been a cordial to my Heart, but the Genll Lincoln was comeing out, as the Alfred came too, in the Down’s. The passages from England have been uncommonly Lengthy, Westerly winds generally prevailing here through the Fall, and one of the mildest Winters I ever knew here.
By Captain Scott, I sent you the Presidents Speach at the opening of Congress. the Senate were unanimous in their approbation of all the Measures persued by the President, and joind him in censureing the self created Societies. the President felt with a keen Sensibil[ity] the Support of the Senate, and he replied with the most affectionate warmth, and an ardour fully expressive of the { 342 } Sense he had of it. Not so the House. day after day past in warm, and Legnthy debates. in Committe, they would not insert any pointed censure upon the self created Societies. it was offerd to the House as an Amendment, and fought with uncommon zeal by the parties. on the club side, was Madison Giles Baldwin, & several Subalterns, on the opposite side Ames & Murry, but Ames alone was equal to an Hoste. his speach was of great length taking up six colums of the News paper. Giles had been two hours employd in vindicating the Lawfulness of Clubs— in reply mr Ames observd that mr Giles had been occupied in refuting what nobody had asserted, and in proveing what Nobody denied. it is not the Right to meet, it is the abuse of the Right after they have met, that is charged upon them. I wish I could send you the whole debate, but I know the expence attending postage in a foreign Country too well to hazard the papers. Mr Ames speach must have carried conviction to every mind unpoisoned by faction— among other arguments; he urged that clubs could not be an equal or proper Representation of the people, because a few Hundreds persons only, and those unauthorised, are Members of clubs— if they should act for others, it would be an usurpation. to avoid this difficulty, said he shall the whole people be classed into Clubs? shall every six miles Square be formed into sovereigntys? thus we shall guard against the abuse of Trust, because we should delegate none, but every Man might go and do his buisness in his own person. we might then form ten or twenty thousand democracies as pure and simple as the most disorganizing Spirit could wish for, but what could keep this fair Horizon unclouded? What could prevent the Whirlwind, and fires of discord, internal, & foreign, from scattering and consuming these fritters, and rags, of the society? like the dry leaves in Autumn, without tranquility, without respectability without Safety, they would be like so many caves of Eolus, where the imprisoned storms were said to struggle for a vent.2 if we look at Greece so famed for Letters, but more for Misiry, we shall see their ferocious Liberty made their petty Commonwealths; Wolve’s dens— that Liberty which Poetry represents as a Goddess—History discribes as a Cannibal but neither the Eloquence of mr Ames, or the Arguments of mr Dexter and Murry united, could get the amendment inserted the words passd too pointed a censure upon some of their near and dear connextions. they united in passing a censure upon combinations of persons Enemical to Government. the address or rather the answer, labourd { 343 } so long, that it was both cold formal and dull, and the replie of the President, was as cold, as that to the Senate was Warm and affectionate.3
after this matter was over there Seemd to be a calm. the Jacobines shrunk away and buisness proceeded pretty harmoniously. “a meeting of the Democratic Society of Pennsilvania was Summond, and an address—to the Patriotic Societies throughout the united States was issued, Stating that certain influential and publick Characters, had ventured publicly to condemn all political societies,[] they add in the old Spirit of Satan. “When denunciations of this kind are presented to the World, supported by the influence, of Character and great Names—they too frequently obtain a currency which they are by no means entitled to either on the Score of Justice propriety or common sense.”4 the whole address is a most impudent attack upon the President and Senate, and the House of Representitives, full of falshood and Misrepresentation, Signd by that Ignorant Blundering thick sculled Blair McClenicon as President. this I expect will furnish Honestus with combustibles for the Chronical for two Months to come. the whole Crew are Netled at the publication of a poem in the orrery, calld the Jacobinade with critical remarks— I at first I thought I knew the Author. the plan is similar to one which was communicated to me, but if my memory serves me, this poem is by no means equal. there is severe satire, but it is sometimes too personal Faction is represented, as the Illusterous Patroness of the order of confusion, and having visited the various Jacobine societies establishd in Europe takes her flight for America, and is thus described by the Poet,

“Her balefull Eyes with Frantick wildness stare

A thousand snakes supply the place of Hair

of Darkest hue, tho mark’d with Sanguine dies

Loose to the Gale her robe funeral flies—

Her dread right Hand distaind with civil Gore

A Thundering Trump of Size Enormous bore

The blast she blew resounded wide and far

And rousd the Maddening populace to War.”

Faction is then represented as exhorting her sons to persevere in the Glorious cause

“Strain every Nerve our sinking cause to save

Then shall no God allarm, no laws enslave

{ 344 }

O’er these Dread foes, our flag shall fly unfurld

And we my Sons, victorious rule the World”

She then proceeds to applaud those who have most Effectually exerted themselves.

Of All her Sons, none gaind so much applause

As lank Honestus with his lanthorn Jaws—

She laments the disasters he had sufferd in her service—

“Thy various woes it Grieves me to relate

The publick insult—and the private Hate

Once too, misguided by some adverse power

You aped Patrician airs in Evil hour

And Federal Russel in resentfull fit

Thy Back belabourd, and thy face bespit”

She at length concludes her address to Honestus

“Mayest thou my Son the noose of Justice break

Nor die suspended by the ropes you make”5

The next Character is that of J——s but I think not so highly coulourd. there is much conjecture respecting the Author, and in their Serch they have fixd it upon a Female. I presume they mean a sister of the Editor of the orrery but I am very certain it is no Female pen.6 they suppose her assisted by her Brother in the Critical remarks—
I heard last Evening from your Father he was well. the Secretary of the Treasury resigns. mr Woolcot is talkd of for his successor—
We are waiting anxiously for to learn the Fate of Holland, tho Thrown, as Milton expresses it on evil times “may light spring out of darkness[]—but where the day star is to arise, has not yet been given us to know.7
I hope it will not be long before I shall learn where to address to you. I think you must still be in England, but where ever you are, the affectionate Wishes for your Health, usefullness, and prosperity follow you, and / the Blessings of your affectionate / Mother
[signed] Abigail Adams
RC (Adams Papers); endorsed by TBA: “Mrs. Adams / 10 January 1795. / 24 April Recd. / 24 Do Answd.” The year “1795” in the endorsement was supplied by JQA.
{ 345 }
1. AA to JQA, 26 Nov. 1794, above.
2. Aeolus was a minor god who controlled the winds by trapping them in a cave on the island of Aeolia (Virgil, Aeneid, Book I, lines 50–54).
3. On 10 Dec. the Boston Columbian Centinel summarized the speech Fisher Ames gave before the House of Representatives on 26 November. For more on the debate over the House’s response to the president’s State of the Union address, see JA to AA, 1 Dec., and note 1, above.
4. AA quotes from the 20 Dec. address published in Philadelphia by the Democratic Society of Pennsylvania and reprinted in the Boston Federal Orrery on 1 Jan. 1795.
5. AA quotes from the first part of “Remarks on the Jacobiniad,” for which see AA to JA, 12 Dec. 1794, and note 2, above.
6. Thomas Paine (1773–1811), Harvard 1792, was the second son of Robert Treat Paine. He had established the Boston Federal Orrery in October and would later change his name to Robert Treat after the death of his older brother. The sister rumored to have been assisting Paine would have been Sally (b. 1772) (DAB; Sarah Cushing Paine, Paine Ancestry: The Family of Robert Treat Paine, Boston, 1912, p. 51).
7. John Milton, Paradise Lost, Book V, line 179.

Docno: ADMS-04-10-02-0222

Author: Adams, Abigail
Recipient: Adams, Thomas Boylston
Date: 1795-01-10

Abigail Adams to Thomas Boylston Adams

Should a vessel cross the Atlantick, and my dear Thomas not find a few lines from his Mother, I know he would feel sadly dissapointed, yet not a Solitary Scrip, has reachd her yet, to assure her, of his, or his Brothers Safety. The arrival of the vessel has been confirmd by a Letter, received in Boston, in replie to one which went in the Alfred, so that my anxiety respecting the Ship was alleviated
I am now impatient to hear from you the sight of your Brothers, or your Hand writing would make my Heart leap for Joy. I wrote to you by Captain Scott who saild in December—and who when he returns is to Marry Mrs Hancock!! Liberty and Equality are her Mottos
I received a Letter from your Brother last week.1 he is in much affliction for the loss of his Friend and Benefactor the Baron Stuben. you know how strongly he was attached to him, and how highly he esteemed him. he made the Baron a visit in october when he went to Albany and in a few days after his return, received the News of sudden Death by a parylitick stroke.
I learn from Mrs Smith that the former connextion between Charles and Sally is renewed, as I always supposed it would be. Heaven Bless them. I will never say anything to prevent it, only that he should see his way clear & be able to support a Family.2 Your cousin William Cranch would have lost his Heart at Philadelphia if it had not been engaged: he writes to his Nancy warm encomiums upon your Flame, Miss Wescot. he is perfectly in Raptures with her—3 you may return Nancys handkerchief—she is going to Marry { 346 } mr Porter. what do you think of the English Ladies? every thing is enchantment upon that ground beware however of their Snares— does Mrs Sydons act yet upon the stage? the Royal Girls, have you seen them? Mary I used to think the Beauty of the Family.4 I ramble with you in imagination it is indeed & very truth a delightfull Country. I always think of it with pleasure— should you see mr Johnson the American Consul, tell him I saw his son last week and that he was well & appeard to be pleased with his situation.5
for politicks I refer you to your Brother, and am my dear son affectionatly / Your Mother
[signed] A Adams—
The Girls all send their Love to you.
RC (DSI-MAH:Political History Coll., Adams-Clement Coll.); addressed by Louisa Catharine Smith: “Mr Thomas B Adams / London—”; endorsed: “Mrs: Adams / 10 January 1795 / 24 April Recd / Do 24 Answd:.”
1. Not found.
2. Romance between CA and SSA first sparked early in 1792. Although the Adams family had reservations about CA’s young age and his ability to support a family so early in his career, the relationship proceeded, and the couple married on 29 Aug. 1795. For Adams family reactions to the courtship, see vol. 9:xxx, 275, 276; JA to AA, 6 Jan. 1794; and JA to JQA, 2 Dec., both above.
3. This is possibly Elizabeth Wescott (1772–1798), who died during a yellow fever epidemic in Philadelphia in 1798 (Philadelphia Gazette of the United States, 12 Sept. 1798).
4. Princess Mary (1776–1857) was the fourth daughter and eleventh child of the fifteen children born to King George III and Queen Charlotte (DNB, entry on George III).
5. Thomas Baker Johnson (1779–1843), brother of LCA, was the only son of Joshua and Catherine Nuth Johnson. Having spent his young life in France and England, Thomas was sent to the United States in 1794 for further schooling. He settled in Boston under the care of Harrison Gray and Sally Foster Otis and undertook the study of Latin in preparation for his entrance into Harvard in 1795 (JA, D&A, 3:240; M/LCA/2, p. 48–49, APM Reel 265; M/LCA/6, 4 July 1803, APM Reel 269; Harrison Gray Otis to Joshua Johnson, 30 Nov. 1795, MHi:Harrison Gray Otis Papers; MH-Ar:Faculty Records, 6:290).

Docno: ADMS-04-10-02-0223

Author: Adams, John
Recipient: Adams, Abigail
Date: 1795-01-12

John Adams to Abigail Adams

[salute] My Dearest Friend

Last Week I received through Mr Izard a kind Invitation to dine with Mrs Powell, whom I had not before seen Since her Loss of Mr Powell. Yesterday I had the Pleasure of dining with her and her Brother & sister Francis with their Children and Mr & Mrs Harrison among the rest—Mr & Mrs Morris & Mr Izard—1
Mrs Powell sends many Compliments to you and regrets that she cannot enjoy your society here, which is so congenial to her own { 347 } Disposition & Taste. Admires your well informed Mind, and thinks you an honour to your Sex &c &c &c
Yesterday The Weather was cold— last night We had half an Inch of Snow and to Day the Weather is colder than it has been before.
Mr Jacob Reed is chosen into our senate in the Room of Mr Izard—and is federal2
Mr Marshal is chosen for Kentucky instead of Mr Edwards—and is Said to be the best Man in the State.3 The Senate will next Year in all Probability be Sounder than it has ever been Since the Constitution commenced.—
inclosed is an History of the French Clergy.4 a biggotted Superstitious Thing—but I suppose too true. The State of France may be collected from it, better than from any other Publication I have seen.
It seems to be the Policy of the Pope and the Clergy to excite the old popular Cry against Heresy & Schism. if they Succeed there will be sanguinary Scænes of another kind— God forgive a Wicked World and reform it
Adieu
RC (Adams Papers); endorsed: “Janry 12 1795.”
1. For Elizabeth Willing Powel, see vol. 9:168. Powel’s sister, Anne Willing Francis, was married to Philadelphia merchant Tench Francis. The couple had five surviving children, three of whom were likely in attendance. The two youngest remained unmarried: Charles (b. 1771) and Elizabeth Powel (b. 1777). The middle daughter, Sophia Francis Harrison, was the wife of Philadelphia businessman George Harrison, for whom see vol. 9:289 (John H. Campbell, History of the Friendly Sons of St. Patrick, Phila., 1892, p. 111–112; George A. Hanson, Old Kent: The Eastern Shore of Maryland, Baltimore, 1876, p. 297).
2. Jacob Read (1752–1816), a Charleston lawyer and politician who represented South Carolina in the Continental Congress from 1783 to 1785, was elected to the seat of retiring senator Ralph Izard and served until 1801 (Biog. Dir. Cong.).
3. Humphrey Marshall (1760–1841) was born in Fauquier County, Va., but resettled in Kentucky County in 1782. A lawyer who served in the Ky. house of representatives from 1793 to 1794, Marshall was elected to the U.S. Senate and served from 1795 to 1801 (same).
4. Originally published by Abbé Augustin Barruel as Histoire du clergé pendant la Révolution françoise, London, 1793, the first American edition was The History of the Clergy during the French Revolution, Burlington, N.J., 1794, Evans, No. 26621.

Docno: ADMS-04-10-02-0224

Author: Adams, Abigail
Recipient: Adams, John
Date: 1795-01-16

Abigail Adams to John Adams

[salute] my Dearest Friend

I yesterday received yours of Janry 1st 4th and 5th. I See by the papers the judicious Motion of Giles as it is an other Bone to pick; and brought forward with no other view or design, but to render himself { 348 } popular with the Sans Culotts1 I cannot help despiseing and abhoring a Man, who is governd by Such base and Sordid motives. Giles’ face was allways my aversion and his Heart I detest, for I believe it desperately wicked. I think however that every precaution should be taken to prevent Foreigners from gaining too great an assendency in our Country, or taking any share in our Government. a Long period of time they ought to be upon probation & after all the precautions we can devise they will be too numerous and powerfull for us if the troubles abroad continue, and increase. I hope Amsterdam will not be obliged to Surrender to the Arms of France, for altho I do not feel towards them, as I did whilst that worse than Borgia, Governd, yet I am far from thinking they have returnd sufficiently to their Reason to Govern themselves, or dictate anything good to others
Mr osgoods Sermon is going through a third Edition. there is adertiz’d an answer to it by de Novien’ a misirable performance tis said, and it is asscribed to Sullivan.2 it is neither sense or Grammer. I have heard two Characteristic marks of Sullivans performance’s, but I rather think him too cunning to wage war against So popular a performance, especially for a Man, who I am informd drinks daily the Health of the President & vice President at his table, and who has never dared openly to meet with, or give his Sanction to the Jacobines. there is much conjecture who the writer of the Jacobiniad is. he is certainly a Man of Letters, and a poet.
Master Cleverly is in great distress that the President being a Church Man, should appoint a Thanksgiving during Lent he shakes his Head, and says tis a very Arbitary thing. I Suppose he cannot help connecting plumb pudding Roast Turkey and minced Pye. he cannot give thanks upon Eggs and fish.3
It will always be thanksgiving day to me, come at what time you will. it would be doubly so could I hear from our Sons— when you return I believe you must Spend a day or two with mrs Smith. she seems to be hurt that you pass on so rapidly—and do not afford her a little more Time. she feels as if it was a want of affection in her Parents, or of a proper respect & duty towarrd them from her and that the world will thus construe it. I know your anxiety to get home, and I know all your Reasons, but at the Same time I know you would not hurt or wound a derserving and affectionate child.
I have received a Bill of Laiding from mr Brisler which I shall inclose to mr Smith who has been very sick, with an inflamitory Rehumatism
You will have received my Letter respecting flower, and some { 349 } other things which I wrote to mr Brisler about.4 he may get me a couple of hundred of Rye flower if you please. I give 8 shillings for Rye here, and I cannot get Hay, as yet at a less price than 5 & 9 pence pr hundred— Grain is so high— the Democrats have no need to exclaim against the Salleries. I am sure they are pretty effectually lower’d Grain is twice as high as it was when they were Granted; so are all the necessaries of Life, but there is no end of their mad and absurd plots.
I had it in mind whether the canker worm would not go up, but I supposed instinct would teach them that they could not find nourishment. the weather is now quite winter, cold tho the Ground is not coverd yet being Icy & a little Snow. one Team has been employd in Sleding the manure across the Meddow from Joys. I presume they will compleat it to day. the other in getting the Stones from the common and this at a time when they could go in the woods to good purpose, but I would not neglect the only opportunity we have had this Winter for this Buisness.
Present me most dutifully to the President and Mrs Washington. they are both too good to be percecuted, Yet blessed are they says a high Authority when Men Revile & Speak evil falsly, of them—
Louiss desires me to present her duty to you and many thanks for your kind Present; I am very anxious for her. her Health declines and she is pale as death yet makes no complaint, but weakness. I know you will Say it is want of excercise which has brought her to it. I should think So more, if each of her sisters had not past through a Similar Weakness and debility. hers has been increasd by returns of the Ague— I am my Dearest Friend most affectionatly / Yours
[signed] A Adams
RC (Adams Papers); endorsed: “Mrs A. Jan. 16 / Ansd 27. 1795.”
1. JA wrote to AA on 4 Jan. (Adams Papers) reporting that “the House have been debating about Titles these 3 or 4 days. Insurgents in all Ages have an invincible Antipathy to Titles.— They will not even be called Citizen or Gaffer & Gammer nor Mr nor Mrs.” He was referring to an amendment Virginia representative William Branch Giles proposed to the naturalization bill on 31 Dec. 1794, which had been brought before the House on 22 December. Giles’ amendment would require aliens to renounce all hereditary or other titles before being granted American citizenship. The proposal sparked strong debate in the House before passing, by a vote of 59 to 32, on 2 Jan. 1795. The naturalization bill subsequently passed in the House on 8 Jan. and in the Senate on 26 Jan.; it was signed by the president on 29 Jan. (Annals of Congress, 3d Cong., 2d sess., p. 816, 1004, 1030–1058, 1064–1066, 1497–1499).
Information on the debate over Giles’ amendment first appeared in the Boston press in mid-January; see Massachusetts Mercury, 13 Jan., although AA more likely read about the debate in the Columbian Centinel the following day.
2. James Sullivan’s staunch justification of the French Revolution was published under { 350 } the pseudonym Citoyen de Novion, The Altar of Baal Thrown Down; or, The French Nation Defended, against the Pulpit Slander of David Osgood, A.M. Pastor of the Church in Medford. A Sermon, Boston, 1795, Evans, No. 29588. Advertisements for the pamphlet first appeared in the Boston Columbian Centinel, 10 January.
3. George Washington’s choice of 19 Feb. as a national day of thanksgiving irked some church leaders, including schoolmaster Joseph Cleverly, the Episcopal lay reader of Quincy’s Christ Church. Cleverly disliked that a day of celebration fell during Lent, which began on 18 Feb. and was traditionally a period during which “the Church requires such a measure of Abstinence, as is more especially suited to extraordinary acts and exercises of Devotion” (Sibley’s Harvard Graduates, 9:285–286; The Book of Common Prayer, N.Y., 1795, Evans, No. 29362).
4. AA’s letter to John Briesler has not been found. In a second letter to JA dated 9 Jan., AA asked that her previous request for two barrels of flour be sent not by Briesler, as originally requested, but instead by Capt. Samuel Eames. She further reported that she had presented a barrel of flour to JA’s mother, who was in good health and had been visiting with AA and some local families (Adams Papers).

Docno: ADMS-04-10-02-0225

Author: Adams, John
Recipient: Adams, Abigail
Date: 1795-01-16

John Adams to Abigail Adams

[salute] My Dearest Friend

The Travelling I Suppose has retarded the Post of this Week, till to Day, when I received your two Letters of the 4th. and 8th.
I am happy to Day in the Company of our Charles, who arrived at my Invitation from New York as fat as a Squab or Duck. Mr Burr Says he is a Steady Man of Business. He is gone to the Drawing Room and Play.
A Debate in Senate disappointed me of the female Commencement.— Fenno has sent Mr Cranch his Paper from the 1st. of Jan.
Mr Bowdoins Morality is the same with that of the Livingston Family at New York, and of all other Men who have more Ambition than Principle. I have gone through a Life of almost three Score Years, and how few have I found whose Principles could hold against their Passions, whose honour could contend with their Interests, or even whose Pride could Struggle with their Vanity.!
May I never have to reproach myself with faults which I have seen so often with Grief shame & Indignation in others— I know not that ever in my Life I gave a Vote against my Judgment— May I never deprive myself of the Power of saying this to my Wife and to my God in my last hour! I wonder that many of my Votes have not sent me home but here I am after a series of trying Years.—
four and thirty Years, the most of my Thoughts and Anxieties have been for the Public. Twenty Years have been wholly devoted to public Employments— My forces of Mind and Body are nearly Spent— Few Years remain for me, if any, in public Life probably fewer still. If I could leave my Country in greater Security, I should retire with { 351 } Pleasure. But a great Cloud hangs over it yet. I mean a Cloud of Ignorance, Knavery & Folly.— Whether a torrent can be Stemm’d or not is yet uncertain. My Hopes however are stronger than my fears, and I am determined to be as happy as I can.
My head is not turn’d I hope, though my Paper is.1
Nabby is not yet abed— she is well however— Mrs Otis & her sister are well—and the little Girls too.
Dont say a Word of my coming home: but I hope to keep Thanksgiving with you. it is however uncertain— Perhaps Congress may rise perhaps not.
I must put Brisler & his Wife into our House next Winter, Louisa to board at Mr Cranches I will pay with Pleasure for her—and take you along with me— What say You to this Project?
The greatest difficulty will be to find Lodgings.
May every Blessing and you and yours
Adieu.
RC (Adams Papers); endorsed: “Janry 16. 1795.”
1. After completing the first page of this letter, JA inadvertently flipped over his paper when opening it to write on the inside. Consequently, the paragraphs beginning “May I never …” and “four and thirty Years …” appear upside down on page 3. JA then concluded the letter, beginning with this sentence, also upside down, but at the top of page 2.

Docno: ADMS-04-10-02-0226

Author: Adams, John
Recipient: Smith, William Stephens
Date: 1795-01-17

John Adams to William Stephens Smith

[salute] My Dear Sir:

I received yesterday your kind letter of the 9th of the month. The letters to Vergennes were sent to him, not presented. He acknowledged the receipt of them; and Congress acknowledged the receipt of the copies of them, and several others written before those two, upon the same subject, in a vote they passed about Sir John Temple. They say, that although Mr. Adams had thought fit to write a letter to Congress in favour of Sir John Temple, yet he had not confided to his care other despatches of infinitely more importance, which he transmitted to Congress by the same vessel, or words to that effect.1 These despatches were copies of all my correspondence with Vergennes on the subject of the imperial mediation, including the two letters which Mrs. Smith now has.
Delicacy towards Mr. Jay will restrain me from publishing in print, at present, any part of these letters. The reason why I did not go to Paris sooner in 1782, was, that the British court had not sent { 352 } any one with a commission acknowledging our independence. The peace being of more importance than my treaty of commerce with Holland, I should have gone to Paris and left that treaty unfinished: but as neither Mr. Grenville, Mr. Fitzherbert, nor Mr. Oswald, had yet received a commission to treat with the United States of America by name, and I was determined not to treat without it, as well as Mr. Jay, I had time to finish off my business at the Hague on the 8th of October, 1782, before I set off on my journey to Paris.2
You may show these letters in confidence to Mr. Webster, and to Mr. McCormic, if you think it worth the pains.
By this time, or very soon, I hope to have to congratulate you and Mrs. Smith on the birth of a daughter. My love to her and my young gentlemen.
I am, with great regard, dear sir, / Yours,
[signed] John Adams.
Enclosed is a Grub-street production, fit to amuse you for half an hour, when you can find no better employment.3
MS not found. Printed from AA2, Jour. and Corr., 2:136–138.
1. Congress acknowledged the receipt of JA’s diplomatic dispatch on 27 Feb. 1782 (JCC, 22:102). For the discussion surrounding John Temple, see JA, Papers, 10:418; 11:xiv, 452.
2. Britain effectively recognized the United States on 21 Sept. 1782 when, at the behest of the American peace commissioners, it issued a commission to Richard Oswald that authorized him to negotiate with the “Thirteen United States of America.” Formal peace negotiations began shortly thereafter with John Jay serving as the principal negotiator owing to the ill health of Benjamin Franklin and JA’s absence in the Netherlands. JA’s negotiations with the Dutch concluded with the signing of the Dutch-American Treaty of Amity and Commerce on 8 Oct., and he departed for Paris nine days later, arriving on 26 Oct. (JA, Papers, 13:xviii, xxii, 412–413, 483–485; 14:xvi).
3. Possibly William Cobbett, writing under the pseudonym Peter Porcupine, A Bone to Gnaw, for the Democrats; or, Observations on a Pamphlet, Entitled, “The Political Progress of Britain,” Part I, Phila., 1795, Evans, No. 28431. Offering a satirical condemnation of the Democrats, especially the recent pamphlet by James ThompsonThomson Callender, for whom see JA to AA, 26 Nov. 1794, and note 1, above, Cobbett wrote in his preface, “I throw it in amongst them, as amongst a kennel of hounds: let them snarl and growl over it, and gnaw it, and slaver it; the more they wear out their fangs this way, the less dangerous will be their bite hereafter.” See also JA to AA, 9 June 1795, and note 1, below.

Docno: ADMS-04-10-02-0227

Author: Adams, John
Recipient: Adams, Abigail
Date: 1795-01-19

John Adams to Abigail Adams

[salute] My dearest Friend

On Saturday I Saw our sons Letter to the Secretary of State. Mr Randolph expressed his intire Satisfaction in it. Said “it was a justification of the Propriety of his appointment, a Presage of his future { 353 } Usefulness: and well digested, well arranged and well connected.” a handsome Compliment.1
In this Letter he says Mr Jay had shewn him the whole Negotiation with Britain— He Speaks very modestly and respectfully. I may not repeat any Thing: but I learn from this Letter that there is not only a Possibility but some Probability that Mr Jay or at least The Result of his Negotiations may be here by the fourth of March. If so I ought to be here too, which will derange my Plan of Spending thanksgiving with you. This will afflect me: but What shall I do?
Charles and I are very happy for the Present but he returns on Thursday. He sends his Love & Duty
Adieu
1. In his letter to Edmund Randolph of 22 Oct. 1794, JQA informed the secretary of state of his safe arrival in England and intended departure for The Hague on 29 October. He also provided a thorough review of the political situation in the Netherlands, from the increasing occupation by the French Army to the response of both the Dutch stadholder and the Patriots. JQA further reported that the strength of the French Army might soon force peace with all the nations at war, except Great Britain, and he closed his letter by remarking that the U.S. treaty with Britain was near its conclusion with acceptable, although not entirely satisfactory, terms (Lb/JQA/3, APM Reel 127).

Docno: ADMS-04-10-02-0228

Author: Adams, John
Recipient: Smith, Abigail Adams
Date: 1795-01-19

John Adams to Abigail Adams Smith

[salute] My Dear Daughter:

I have a letter from your brother Thomas, dated London, 19th October; and the Secretary of State has one from John of the 22d. They had a good passage, and were in good health. They intended to go to Holland on the 29th.
Enclosed is a copy of a letter from me to Mr. Jay, dated at the Hague, August the 13th, 1782, which probably put him first upon insisting on a new commission from Great Britain, before he would treat, expressly authorizing Mr. Oswald to treat with the Ministers of the United States of America. Put this copy with those that I sent you before.1 Col. Smith, if he thinks fit, may show this in confidence to Mr. Webster, Mr. McCormic, and Judge Hobart, if he will.2
Charles and I smoke our segars and look over old letter books, in great comfort together. He talks of leaving me next Thursday.
I wish you good health and a daughter, and the blessing of Heaven on the mother and all her children.
[signed] John Adams
MS not found. Printed from AA2, Jour. and Corr., 2:138.
{ 354 }
1. In this letter, JA reiterated his opinion that negotiations for peace should not commence until American independence was recognized. That it was a shared belief is evident by John Jay’s 1 Sept. 1782 response, in which he informed JA that he formally stipulated such recognition to the British commissioners (JA, Papers, 13:236, 238–239, 412–413).
2. John Sloss Hobart (1738–1805), Yale 1757, was born in Fairfield, Conn., but settled in Huntington, N.Y. After serving in the provincial congress from 1775 to 1777, he was elected to the state supreme court in May 1777, where he served until his election to the U.S. Senate in Jan. 1798. After only four months in the Senate, JA appointed Hobart a federal judge for New York, a position he held until his death (DAB).

Docno: ADMS-04-10-02-0229

Author: Adams, John
Recipient: Adams, Abigail
Date: 1795-01-20

John Adams to Abigail Adams

[salute] My Dearest Friend

I recd your favour of the 9th. Yesterday.1 The Weather is now extream Cold. The River is frozen and a snow covers the Ground. If the Season is as sharp and at the Same time so fine with you, it will present a good Opportunity to cross the Mill Pond.
It was judicious Advice and a prudent determination to cutt your Wood this Winter from the Mountain: and I hope you will pursue your Plan of preparing a sufficient Store for the Year.
I am “gallant” enough to think the time tedious, till I can begin my Journey home, and I shall think it all the Way tedious till I get home: But I am afraid I have flattered myself prematurely with the pleasing hope of Seeing you by the 19th of February. There is so general and so great Expectation of important Matter for the senate from Mr Jay, before the 4th of March, that, I have some doubts whether I ought not to Stay, though my own Opinion is not Sanguine that We shall have any Dispatches so soon.
What is to be the Fortune of General Knox, I know not. I am anxious about him and his Family. He has been raised to an Elevation, for which neither Nature, nor Education ever intended him. Fortune alone has been his Patron— His Family has been worse calculated for his situation than himself— He has been a laborious and I doubt not a faithful servant of the Public, and it would be melancholly to see him unfortunate in his old Age. I wish his Lands may prove a source of Abundance to him and his Family.
Hamilton will do better. He is younger and has more Œconomy. It is Said he refuses all public Employment and goes resolutely to the Bar at New York. He refuses to Stand Candidate for Governor.
Mr Morris has resigned. Mr Izard has resigned: and I dont know { 355 } but all the best Men will resign.2 The Government will fall for Want of Men to hold it up.
Charles drank Tea with Col Hamilton last Evening and dines with him to Day. He returns to N. York on Thursday. He sends his Duty. Our Mrs Smith is well but not abed as yet.
Cold as it is, my heart is as warm as ever towards her whom I commit A Dieu
RC (Adams Papers); endorsed: “Janry 20 1795.”
1. One of AA’s two letters of 9 Jan. is above; for the second, see AA to JA, 16 Jan., and note 4, above.
2. Robert Morris of Pennsylvania retired from the U.S. Senate after serving since 1789 (Biog. Dir. Cong.).

Docno: ADMS-04-10-02-0230

Author: Adams, Abigail
Recipient: Adams, John
Date: 1795-01-21

Abigail Adams to John Adams

[salute] My Dearest Friend

We have had very Severe weather through the whole of this week, but very little snow. yet the Ground being hard froze, our people have been sledging Stones. to day the wind has come round to the Southard, & Thaws. we cannot do half the buisness I want to have done. from here they go out early & spend no Idle time. the other Team does not work so hard, but looking after so Many cattle takes up much time.
you will see by the papers The Govenours Speach.1 He has paid more attention to publick affairs than in any former Speach. mr osgood has really awakened him, and roused him to a sense of his Duty. his Speach however is a pretty cold one, & shews that he was constraind to say something, or look very unfeaderal
The Connecticut News Boy is really cruel to the old Gentleman.2 I hope it will not be a Death wound, as a similar insinuation from Burk killd Good Dr Price.3 he has given a sprig of Lawrel to embelish, (I am too much of a Democrat) to say Crown a Friend of mine. I think Congress had better have passd to the order of the Day than have Squabled so long to have made so much ill Blood, merely to give the Jacobines a Triumph— it was knowing the motives of the Mover, that raisd the indignation of the opposers— it was a Trap to catch those who scornd the Bate. it was done to allarm the credulous—and wound the feelings of those who possessd too much independance of Spirit to flinch at the trial having carried their point. I am sorry there was so much opposition to the Yeas & Nays—
{ 356 }
you will see by the papers that our sons had a fine passage.4 I am told that some private Letter informs that they left London on the 30 of october, for the Hague. I have written twice by way of London— tis strange that we get no Letters. are there none from mr Jay? I hope it will not be long before I shall hear from them. Perilious are the Times into which they have fallen— I hope it may prove for their good and the benifit of their Country that they are called into Service in so critical a period. many are my reflections upon it in the wakefull Watches of the Night. to an over ruling Providence I commend them. adieu Ever Yours &c
[signed] A A
RC (Adams Papers); endorsed: “Mrs A. Jan. 21 / ansd Feb 2. 1795.”
1. Gov. Samuel Adams addressed the Massachusetts legislature on 16 January. In his speech, the governor advocated for an engaged citizenry as the best means for effective government. He wrote, “No people can be more free under a Constitution established by their own voluntary compact, and exercised by Men appointed by their own frequent suffrages.” The address gave voice to Adams’ republican ideology but also supported the president’s recent decisions regarding neutrality with Europe and his suppression of the violence in western Pennsylvania and with Native Americans (Dft, Adams Papers).
The address was published in the Boston Columbian Centinel, 17 Jan., but did not appear in the Philadelphia papers until 26. Jan., when it was reprinted in the Philadelphia Gazette.
2. On 5 Jan. the Connecticut Courant published the newsboy’s address “to all Christian people,” one section of which poked fun at the Massachusetts governor: “And now, O Muse! throw Candour’s veil, / O’er aged Sam. in dotage frail; / And let past services atone, / For recent deeds of folly done; / When late aboard the Gallic ship, / Well fraught with democratic flip, / He praying fell on servile knees, / That France alone might rule the seas; / While Sense and Reason took a nap, / And snor’d in Jacobinic cap. / His other acts, both grave and jolly, / Behold! are in the book of Folly; / Yet should he with his fathers sleep, / We’ll strive with all our might—to weep.” Extracts of the address appeared in the Boston Columbian Centinel, 14, 17 January. See also AA to TBA, 23 April, and note 5, below.
3. Richard Price, the British dissenting minister and close friend of the Adamses, died in April 1791 only a few months after Edmund Burke published an attack on Price’s philosophical support of the French Revolution. JA believed the two events were connected (vol. 9:216), as apparently did AA. For further description of the differences between Price and Burke, see vol. 9:205.
4. On 21 Jan. the Boston Columbian Centinel reported that the Alfred had arrived in London on 13 Oct. 1794 and that “Mr. Adams, the American Minister Resident at the Hague, went passenger in this vessel. He immediately set out for the Hague.”

Docno: ADMS-04-10-02-0231

Author: Adams, John
Recipient: Adams, Abigail
Date: 1795-01-23

John Adams to Abigail Adams

[salute] My Dearest Friend

I thank you for presenting a Barrell of Flour to my Mother, and wish you to do every Thing for her Comfort, that lies in your Power. My Duty to her.— Ames is not here nor is any other Vessell bound to Boston. We shall send more Flour as soon as there is Opportunity. I am glad to hear that at length after 5 or 6 Years meditation you have { 357 } made your Visit to Mrs Miller and Mrs Vezey. I am afraid you did not at last carry Madam Apthorp to those Places, as you ought to have done.1 We have had Severe cold for a few Days: but it has Since moderated and carried off the snow. Winter never Seems to be in earnest, when it comes so late.
Charles return’d yesterday to New York. and left me, more solitary, than he found me. I know not what Resolution to take about coming home. I fear, it will be expected of me that I stay till 4 March, waiting for Mr Jays Dispatches and his Treaty—not that I believe they will arrive so soon. Not that I can have any Voice in the Question for two thirds decidedly of the senate must agree— Not that one Member, will be in the least influenced by any Opinion of mine— Not that I can give any Information in the Affair to the most ignorant. But it will be expected, that I stay. Tout est dit—i.e. Although every Body else do as they please & go & come when they will, I alone must be chained to the oars. I shall keep a triste Thanksgiving in Philadelphia. The Second Week in March is moreover the Worst moment in the Year to travel. I shall be carted again or rather drawn in a Coach by oxen as I was [slosped?] ferry to New Haven, part of the Way, which is more ridiculous. But I have been horse carted from Leostoff in England fifteen miles and Boorswaggoned fifty miles, from Goree, Overflaekee and Helvoet to the Brille; and have been mule carried and walked on foot over the Mountains in Spain—and after that nothing can come amiss.2 The more a Man submits to be a slave the more he may.
I wish I had an exact Account of all the Voyages I have made between Harwich & Helvoet—and between Calais & Dover—The Voyage from New York to Providence last summer and from New Haven to New York last fall— Did ever any Man make so many uncomfortable Journeys and Voyages? They have been enough to kill any other Man for what I know certainly most other Men— But a kind loving grateful Country, is a sweet and ample Reward for all these Sufferings & services. You know how dearly she loves me, how kindly she treats me and how generously she rewards me.
Adieu
RC (Adams Papers); endorsed: “Janry 23. 1795.”
1. Elizabeth Hamock Miller (1734–1800), daughter of Capt. John Hamock and Sarah Hodgson of Boston, was the wife of Maj. Ebenezer Miller, for whom see JA, D&A, 1:64. Her sister-in-law was Mary Miller Veasey (1734–1806), daughter of the first Episcopal minister at Braintree’s Christ Church, Rev. Ebenezer Miller, and Martha Mottram. She was also the widow of Braintree mariner Ebenezer Veasey, who had died in 1762 { 358 } (Sprague, Braintree Families). “Madam Apthorp” was likely Grizzell Apthorp, for whom see vol. 7:111.
2. For JA’s overland trek between Ferrol, Spain, and Bayonne, France, from Dec. 1779 to Jan. 1780, see JA, D&A, 2:409–433. For his Jan. 1784 journey from Goeree Island to Brielle, in the Netherlands, see same, 3:152–153. For his mention of traveling by cart from Lowestoft to London in Aug. 1784, see same, 3:170.

Docno: ADMS-04-10-02-0232

Author: Shaw, Elizabeth Smith
Recipient: Adams, Abigail
Date: 1795-01-24

Elizabeth Smith Shaw to Abigail Adams

[salute] My Dear Sister—

I have had a very bad cold, attended with some other complaints which have enfeebled me, & made me look quite sick, for a fortnight I dare not go out of door, but I am now much better— The body, & the Mind are so nearly connected that the one cannot suffer without the other. To the indisposition of the former, would I attribute a certain depression of Spirits which has troubled me for some time. I feel as if my Heart was too, too big for its little Tenement— It is not because I suffer for the want of any-thing, for few women had ever more reason to be grateful than I. To a kind Providence do I feel myself indebted for the many Friends which have assisted me, & for the daily Favours I receive— It is cause of much thankfulness that when my Family is so changed, I have such agreeable Boarders, who are Companions that take a filial, or fraternal care of me— It serves greatly to sweeten the bitter Cup, which my heavenly Father has assigned me— The care of providing for them, occupies my mind, & keeps it from brooding over its own Sorrows in the Day—but in the night, in the Silence of night the Sleep I court, like a Phantom flies from me—& (I trust) “lights on lids unsullied with a Tear”—1I cannot sleep my sister, or but very little— may all gracious heaven preserve my mind, & in every visiscitude which I may be called to pass through, may my temper be equal, & sedate— I go to sleep repeating that beautiful Apostrophe wherein Pope describes a good woman—

“O! blessed with temper, whose unclouded ray,

Can make tomorrow chearful as to day.”2

& wish most earnestly, that I may be possessed of that serene & placid disposition which is a continual source of pleasure, & of happiness—
I often question myself in the language of the Psalmist “Why art thou cast down, O my Soul? why art thou disquieted Within me?— { 359 } dost thou not hope in God? & is it not as an anchor to thy Soul?”3 sure & stedfast—why should thou fear Evil, if enlisted under the banners of him, who has stiled himself the widows God—
The Doctor has advised me to go out, & ride every Opportunity. I know I always lost my sleep whenever I have been any long time confined— I hope the cold weather, & air will brace my Nerves— To any body less affectionate than a Sister, I should not dare to say so much of myself,— You who love, & know me, can enter into all my feelings even to those of a Mother, & are sensible with what weight my Children lie upon my heart— Their Education & their welfare is my greatest Concern— I am happy that my Daughter meets with your approbation you cannot think what a comfort it has been to think that you love her— I have trembled for her— It was absolutely necessary she should go from this house—yes, & from one Mother to another—that would kindly check her temerity, & who would carefully pluck from her youthful mind those <poisonous> weeds, which if left would soon root out those seeds of Virtue, which I hope are implanted there—4
Mr Kent came last monday & brought Miss Margeret Austin, & left her here, & took Cousin Betsy Smith home with him—5 I tried to perswade miss Austin to tarry here a week, or more, but she had been a year from home, & we could not prevail with her— she went in the Stage on thursday— She is an amiable Girl, & is much admired by the Gentlemen— She deserves to be the favorite of every body— Mr Abbot continues with us, growing every day in the Esteem of the People— I hope they will soon come to a determination concerning him— Some persons say he is courting—the common cant you know, to be said of young Gentlemen—but if his Heart is not engaged, there is one dear Girl who has a Soul that I think in perfect unison with his—6 their tempers are so sweetly harmonized to the pure precepts of the Gospel that they could not but be happy in promoting each others best interest— they have kindred minds— their Souls were formed in the same happy mould—may “Cupid yoke the Doves”—7 Perhaps, I am enthusiastick in my Friendships— but I never saw anything in either of them but what I should delight in, if they were my own Children, & should say, go on—pursue the path of virtue grow in Grace, & the God who is Love, make you perfect—
I hope whenever you hear from your Children you will inform me of it— I have not time at present to write to Sister Cranch, or to { 360 } Betsy Quincy— Please to give my Love to them, & / accept of the sincere affection of your / ever obliged Sister
[signed] Elizabeth Shaw—
1. Edward Young, Night Thoughts,The Complaint; or, Night Thoughts, Night I, line 5.
2. Alexander Pope, Moral Essays, Epistle 2, lines 257–258.
3. Shaw conflates two separate Bible verses. The first three sentences echo Psalms, 42:11; the final line derives from Hebrews, 6:19.
4. Betsy Quincy Shaw stayed with the Adamses nearly a year and returned again for another extended stay in the spring of 1796 (Elizabeth Smith Shaw Peabody to AA, 9 Jan. 1796, 28 Feb., 19 May, all Adams Papers).
5. This is possibly Ebenezer Kent (1759–1812) of Charlestown, who was the son of Mary Austin and Ebenezer Kent. Both he and Margaret Austin (b. 1770), the daughter of Charlestown pewtersmith Nathaniel Austin and Margaret Rand, were distant cousins of AA’s (L. Vernon Briggs, Genealogies of the Different Families Bearing the Name of Kent in the United States Together with Their Possible English Ancestry A.D. 1295–1898, Boston, 1898, p. 52–53, 72–76; Jim and Liz Austin Carlin, Some Descendants of Richard Austin of Charlestown, Massachusetts, 1638, Baltimore, 1998, p. 41–42).
6. The Unitarian minister Abiel Abbot (1770–1828), Harvard 1792, began preaching at Haverhill in Nov. 1794 after the death of Rev. John Shaw. In Feb. 1795 the congregation invited him to stay, and he was ordained on 3 June. Abbot would marry Eunice Wales of Dorchester in 1796 and remained at Haverhill until 1803 (Sprague, Annals Amer. Pulpit, 8:309–310).
7. Isaac Watts, “Few Happy Matches,” line 54.

Docno: ADMS-04-10-02-0233

Author: Adams, John
Recipient: Adams, Abigail
Date: 1795-01-27

John Adams to Abigail Adams

[salute] My Dearest Friend

Yesterday I had your favour of 16. Mr Osgoods sermon has been printed here. I have heard Mr Gardiner, hinted at as the Writer of the Jacobiniad— some think Mr Paine himself writes it.
I am sorry for Mr Cleverlys Mortification and think the Cause of it might have been avoided.
I am Still afraid I shall not be able to get away, so soon as I once hoped.— I will Spend as much time as I can with Nabby. She is a good Child. I wish I could hear of her Safety. She was well the last time I heard but not abed.
You have eer this recd two Letters from Thommy. John wrote to his Master and Thomas to his Parents.1
There is no Vessell here bound to Boston. Brisler will provide the Things you write for to be sent by the first Opportunity.
The Farm goes on very much to my Satisfaction. knowing your Attachment to Wood, I consider it a Sacrifice to let the Teams cart manure & stones.— You will have Sledding enough now, for the snow is deep & the Weather cold.
{ 361 }
I am anxious for Louisa— She must exercise. We have no News of late, from abroad. Mr Dexters Election is very pleasing here to all the good People. It would have been disgraceful to the People to have left him out.
The President & his Lady are remarkably well.— But Nelly Custis is as weakly as Louisa and for the same Reason want of Exercise.
The Governors Speech is pretty well— He is the better for a little Correction. It is the most constitutional and unexceptionable speech he ever made as Governor. A little of the old Leaven leaks out in an Insinuation against somebody. The Old Mans Virtue is at length lost in Ambition— And if Ambition and Avarice have seized him, who is Secure? When Ambition and Avarice, are predominant Passions and Virtue is lost Republican Governments are in danger. Honour & Profit instead of Virtue must soon become the Principle of the Government:
With the tenderest Affection I am as ever your
[signed] John Adams2
RC (Adams Papers); endorsed: “Janry 27th / 1795.”
1. For JQA’s letter to Edmund Randolph, see JA to AA, 19 Jan., and note 1, above.
2. JA had written a brief letter to AA the previous day in which he commented on the vagaries of the weather and the relatively calm political climate in Philadelphia, albeit with continuing delays in certain election results (Adams Papers).

Docno: ADMS-04-10-02-0234

Author: Adams, Abigail
Recipient: Adams, John
DateRange: 1795-01-29 - 1795-01-31

Abigail Adams to John Adams

[salute] my dearest Friend

I yesterday received your Several Letters inclosing those from Thomas—I do most sincerely rejoice in the safety and welfare, of our sons I hope I am not unmindfull of the repeated favours of Providence towards my Family, in Protecting and preserving them both by Sea & Land May the same gracious Providence continue to Gaurd them, and to make them usefull in the various Stations in which they may be called to act.
I had heard by a vessel which arrived at Marblehead, that there was a Letter from mr Dickinson, mentioning that the two mr Adam’s’s dinned with him on some day in october.2 the [cap]tain says he read in a Gazzet, the Treaty between great Britain, & America Signd sometime in Nov’br but by some accident he came away without the papers— if so important a matter is expected to come before Congress daily, I cannot urge you against your duty. I understand { 362 } that this Captain reports, that a vessel saild several days before him with dispatches from mr Jay—
you will see that the News Boy did not escape a comment from me. Honestus’s Father3 meeting mr Storer in the street, stopd him and askd him, if he had seen the Centinal of the Day, to which he replied Yes. well have you read that infamous Poetry, that Libel upon the Goveneur? Yes. well is not shamefull that our Printers should publish such rascally Scandelous stuff. Russel coppied it from the Hartford Paper. no Matter replies the old Man. he ought to be punished for Printing such a vile thing. pray mr Austin have not other Printers taken greater Latitude? upon which the old Gentleman walkd off— Such measure as they meet to others they cannot bear to have measured to them. Jarvis rules the House of Representitives. mr Dexters Friends have not exerted themselves as they ought. Varnum is said to be a shallow Man, a great prater. the Antis have exerted themselves for him, merely to revenge themselves for mr Ames Election
the third trial, there will be more exertion on both sides—4
we last night had a very pentifull southerly Rain which carried of all the Ice & what little Snow there was, but we have not had it upon a level, one inch deep. when ever our people could Sled stones, they have applied themselves to those in the common and have only got down the first wall. it employ joy and Shaw more than a week to Sled down the manure from joys place. he had 8 load of Summer manure. we shall be very dilligent, or rather as much So as I can prevail upon them to be. Elisha shaw want no Stimulous. he is all mrs Hobart described him.5 mr White her Father died this week very suddenly. he mounted his Horse & rode a few steps & fell of Dead.6
I have purchased three Tons of Hay. Captain Baxter from the Neck brought me a Tax Bill of a Hundred & 50 dollors for the last year.7 I told him I could not pay it till March. he was very desirious to have a part of it to prevent an execution being leveld by the State treasurer against him; so I told him I would pay him Your proportion of the State tax.
Remember me kindly to all inquiring Friend’s—and be assured of the Sincere affection of / Your
[signed] A Adams—
RC (Adams Papers); addressed by Louisa Catharine Smith: “The Vice President of the / United States. / Philadelphia.”; endorsed: “Mrs A. Jan. / Ansd Feb. 10. 1795.” Filmed at Jan. 1795. Some loss of text where the seal was removed.
{ 363 }
1. The dating of this letter is based on the death of Joseph White, for which see note 6, below.
2. For Thomas Dickason, see TBA to AA, 20 Oct. 1794, and note 3, above.
3. That is, the Boston merchant Benjamin Austin Sr. (1717–1806) (Thwing Catalogue, MHi).
4. AA refers to the layered process of local elections whereby each of the fourteen Massachusetts districts held elections until a majority result was determined. The third round of the congressional elections, which had begun the previous November, would be held on 23 March (Mass., Acts and Laws, 1794–1795, p. 60–65; Boston Federal Orrery, 23 March 1795).
5. Thankful White Adams, widow of JA’s brother Elihu, had married Col. Aaron Hobart in 1777 (NEHGR, 31:250 [April 1877]; Sprague, Braintree Families).
6. Lt. Joseph White (1706–1795), a local surveyor, tithingman, selectman, and warden, died on 28 Jan. (Sprague, Braintree Families).
7. Capt. Daniel Baxter (1758–1836) of Hough’s Neck, Quincy, son of Daniel and Prudence Baxter, was appointed tax collector in 1790 (same; Joseph Nickerson Baxter, Memorial of the Baxter Family, Boston, 1879, p. 25–26).

Docno: ADMS-04-10-02-0235

Author: Adams, John
Recipient: Adams, Abigail
Date: 1795-01-29

John Adams to Abigail Adams

[salute] My Dearest Friend

The public Prints, announce the Death of my old esteemed Friend General Roberdeau, whose Virtues in heart Searching Times endeared him to Philadelphia and to his Country. His friendly Attention to me, when Congress held their Sessions at York Town, I can never forget, and excites a more lively Interest in his Loss than that of some others who have lately gone before him.1
Mr King is re-elected by the Legislature of New York by a majority of five in the House and two in the senate, in opposition to Mr Tillotson, whom you know, to have married a Sister of Chancellor Livingstone.2 This is a great Point gain’d.
Mr Jay, Chancellor Livingstone, Mr Burr, Mr Yates and Mr Hamilton, are mentioned as Successors to Gov. Clinton who has resigned— Mr Jay, if he should not return, will not run very fast. Mr Hamilton it is Said will not serve. Chancellor will stand no Chance as I hear, and it is doubted whether Burr or Yates will prevail.3
We are Still at Uncertainties whether Mr Jay or Despatches from him will arrive before the 4th of March, which makes me Still dubious whether it will be right for me to go away. I am most earnestly and ardently desirous of it but Will it do?
Mrs Washington is very happy at present in a Visit from her two Granddaughters, Nelly’s sisters as I suppose they are—4 one of them is a fine blooming, rosy Girl, who I dare Say has had more Liberty and Exercise than Nelly.
I dined Yesterday at Mr Morris’s whose Hospitality is always prescious. a Company of venerable Old Rakes of Us three score Years { 364 } of Age, or a little over or a little Under Sat smoaking segars, drinking burgundy & Maderira & talking Politicks till almost Eleven O Clock— This will do once in a great While: not often for me—
In senate We have no Feelings this session— All is cool— No Passions. No Animation in Debate. I never Sat in any public Assembly, so serenely. What Storm may be preparing I know not.— a great Calm at sea & an uncommonly fine day at Land is called a Weather breeder— But if Jays Despatches dont Arrive We shall have no Tempestuous Weather this session.
I wish you a pleasant Thanksgiving though I fear I shall not be with you according to my Wishes.
Adieu
Instead of an additional Snow, and a return of cold as I hoped this morning We have now a warm and plentiful Rain, which is melting the Snow and Spoiling the Slaying. I hope you have more Snow, more Steady cold, good Sledding and a Solid Mill Pond.
The Post to day, brought me no Letter. I dont always very Sanguinely look for a Letter on Thursdays. I Should be inconsolable on a disappointment a Monday.5
RC (Adams Papers); endorsed: “Janry 29 1795.”
1. For Gen. Daniel Roberdeau, a former member of the Continental Congress and Philadelphia businessman, see vol. 2:350, 352–353. Notice of Roberdeau’s death, in Winchester, Va., on 5 Jan., first appeared in the Philadelphia newspapers on 28 Jan. (Aurora General Advertiser; American Daily Advertiser).
2. During New York’s congressional elections of 1794–1795, the Federalists retained both seats in the Senate with the narrow reelection of the incumbent Rufus King. His opponent was Dr. Thomas Tillotson (1750–1832), a Maryland native who had settled in New York after the Revolution. Tillotson served in the state assembly from 1788 to 1790 and then the state senate from 1791 to 1799. His wife was Margaret Livingston (1749–1823), the sister of Robert R. Livingston (Biog. Dir. Cong.; Thomas Streatfeild Clarkson, A Biographical History of Clermont, or Livingston Manor, Clermont, N.Y., 1869, p. 256; Young, Democratic Republicans, p. 425).
3. On 22 Jan. 1795 Gov. George Clinton announced his decision not to seek a seventh term as governor, citing ill health. Robert Yates (1738–1801), chief justice of the New York Supreme Court, was one of the many candidates to emerge during the 1795 gubernatorial race. A patriot and lawyer, Yates had served on the state court since 1777 and been appointed chief justice in 1790. His Antifederal leanings had tempered enough by 1789 for him to unsuccessfully stand as a Federalist candidate for governor. Six years later, Yates was again courted by some Federalist supporters before firmly aligning himself with the Republican cause. He won his party’s caucus to become the Republican candidate, but he lost the election to the Federalist John Jay (DAB;Young, Democratic Republicans, p. 430–434).
4. Martha Washington’s two eldest granddaughters were Elizabeth Parke Custis (1776–1832) and Martha Parke Custis (Washington, Papers, Presidential Series, 1:4–5).
5. JA emphasized this last paragraph by writing it in large script.

Docno: ADMS-04-10-02-0236

Author: Adams, John
Recipient: Adams, Charles
Date: 1795-01-31

John Adams to Charles Adams

[salute] Dear Charles

If C. as you Say in yours of the 29th.1 must provide for his Family, I Suppose it will be easy for him to do it: because being not only a Republican but a Democrat by Profession, no doubt he is possessed of the most essential Ingredient in that Character, which is a Love of Poverty and equality. Two Acres of Land is more than an Equality, and as much as Cincinnatus owned, who was an Aristocrat. One Acre then I should Suppose would Satisfy this great and eminent Profesor of deep Democraticallity.
The Election of Mr King is great Joy, to all the rational Part of the Public here, for he has great Information, Steady Conduct, and powerful Elocution. As it is a great Misfortune to the U. S. that New York by the Intrigues of your <Monsicur> Citizen Egalité, has been made a southern State, it would be a prosperous Event if your Prediction should be accomplished, and your fellow Citizens should be again restored to a sense of their real Interest and Duty. And for the reasons you assign the Change seems probable enough.
We are waiting with Impatience for the Mail from New York of this day to bring the Information by the ship Columbia. some flying Letters yesterday announced a Treaty Signed by Mr Jay.2
The happy Event in Col smiths family gives me much Joy— I hope the Increase of his family will teach him Moderation and Frugality.— If he has it in his Power to make a comfortable Provision for his Family he will be unpardonable to waste his means upon hounds and Horses. I dont wish him Cns.love of Poverty, but I wish him some of his Frugality. The Lands he is daily eating, would make handsome Portions for his sons and Daughters Thirty or forty Years hence.
You do not mention the Receit of Rowans Tryal which I sent you. I hope you will have all the Tryals I have sent you bound up in Volumes. In your Profession they will be valuable.3
I am afraid the Report of a Treaty will detain me here till the fifth of March, which will expose me to an uncomforable Journey in bad roads.— But it is wicked to complain. Let me be content. Your Brothers Arrival and your sisters Happiness are Blessings in my family for which I ought to be very thankful. I am my Dear Charles, with Thanks also for your comfortable Prospects, Affectionately yours
[signed] John Adams
{ 366 }
RC (MHi:Seymour Coll.); internal address: “C. Adams.”
1. Not found.
2. On 30 Jan. the Philadelphia Gazette of the United States announced the arrival of private letters from London that confirmed the signing of the treaty. The following day, the same newspaper further identified the vessel that carried the letters as the Columbia, which arrived in New York from Bristol.
3. Archibald Hamilton Rowan (1751–1834), an Irish patriot, was born and educated in England but settled in Ireland in 1784. A member of the revolutionary republican organization the Society of United Irishmen, Rowan was arrested and charged with seditious libel in 1792. He was found guilty at his Jan. 1794 trial and imprisoned for two years. A record of his trial was published in Dublin in March and reprinted in New York later that year (DNB; Report of the Trial of Archibald Hamilton Rowan, Esq. on an Information, Filed, Ex Officio, by the Attorney General, to the Distribution of a Libel, N.Y., 1794, Evans, No. 27643).
CA did have Rowan’s trial report bound with the reports of the trials of Joseph Gerrald, Thomas Muir, and Robert Watt and David Downie, which JA had sent him previously; see JA to CA, 13, 20 Dec. 1794, both above. Until now in private hands, this bound collection of trials has recently been added to the John Adams Library at MB.

Docno: ADMS-04-10-02-0237

Author: Adams, John
Recipient: Adams, Abigail
Date: 1795-02-01

John Adams to Abigail Adams

[salute] My dearest Friend

You have sometime since, I presume, received my Letters inclosing those of our son Thomas of the 19th. of October: You have also I hope and doubt not been informed by Col smith or Charles of the good Fortune of our Daughter, who on the twenty Eighth of January went to bed in good health as could be expected with an healthy Daughter. I congratulate you on all these prosperous Events, and wish I could be with you at the time I have more than once intimated: We have Reason to be thankful for many Blessings in our Family as well as in our Country.
But a Treaty concluded by Mr Jay is announced to the Public, in the News Papers: and this Report, whether true or not, will excite such Expectation, that I suppose I must Stay here till the End of the Chapter. My Presence or Absence is indeed immaterial because I can in no Case have a Vote, two thirds of the Senate being required to ratify a Treaty: nevertheless both my Friends and my Ennemies, would remark my Absence the former with regret the latter with Malignity. Indeed I have Some scruples in my own Mind, whether I ought not to be present— It may be in my Power to explain some things, and to give some hints which perhaps might not occur to others, as the subject has been so long under my immediate Consideration.
The most mortifying Thing will be, the little Probability that the Treaty will arrive before the 4th. of March. If it were certain it would { 367 } come, I should Stay without hesitation: but as it is in my Mind most improbable that it will, I shall remain here with some Uneasiness.
Col. Ward of Newtown is here, and lodges in this Hotel.1 This Gentleman I believe is one of the most stedfast friends I have in the World. Indeed few have known me so long or been so attentive to my Conduct: but how different is his Behaviour from that of some others who have known me as long and as fully as he has.— A faithful Friend upon disinterested public Principles, is a Jewell: but political friendships which shift with popular Winds, are not worth a straw.
Mrs Otis & Miss Betsy are very well— I saw them last Evening— They send their regards.—
Oh my Hobby Horse—and my little Horse! I want you both for my Health And Oh my2 I want you much more, for the delight of my heart and the cheering of my spirits—
Louisa must walk or die— it does not signify she must be compelled to write and walk too—
I am my dearest Friend, most / tenderly yours
[signed] John Adams
RC (Adams Papers); endorsed: “Febry 1 1795.”
1. Col. Joseph Ward, for whom see JA, Papers, 3:238. Ward, who had established a successful land office and then brokerage business in Boston following the Revolution, was likely in Philadelphia seeking payment on the new emission bills of credit issued by Congress after the revaluation of continental currency in 1780. Petitions Ward made in 1795, 1796, and 1798 were rejected (M. F. Sweetser, King’s Handbook of Newton, Massachusetts, Boston, 1889, p. 126; Hamilton, Papers, 22:401; JCC, 16:263–266).
2. JA left nearly a full line of blank space at this point.

Docno: ADMS-04-10-02-0238

Author: Adams, John
Recipient: Adams, Abigail
Date: 1795-02-02

John Adams to Abigail Adams

[salute] My dearest Friend

This Morning I received your favour of the 21st. of January. I am Sure your People do a great deal of Work, So dont be concern’d— I am very well Satisfied with your Agricultural Diary.
The venerable Governor made the best Speech he ever made—but the old Leaven ferments a little in it.—
I wonder you had not recd two Letters from Thomas which I inclosed to you. I now inclose you one from Mr Jay, which shews that our sons were arrived in Holland and had passed through their Ceremonies at the Hague and gone to Amsterdam, to look as I Suppose after the imprudent Van staphorst, and American Money in his Hands.1
{ 368 }
The inclosed Postscript to Dunlap will shew you, that the Expectation of a Treaty, hourly to arrive, will not allow me to leave my Chair till the fourth of March—2 I shall be charged with deserting the President, forsaking the secretary of State, betraying my friend Jay, abandoning my Post and Sacrificing my Country to a weak Attachment to a Woman and a weaker fondness for my farm, if I quit at this moment. so be thou thankful alone, that thou hast a good Husband here, that thy Children are safe and in Honour in Europe, and that thy Daughter has given thee a fine Granddaughter; besides innumerable Blessings to thy Country. I will be thankful and joyous here all alone.—
We momently expect the Treaty: but it may not arrive this month.— When it does I expect to see wry faces as well as smiling ones.— Perhaps much Debate may take Place— Let Us know what it is first however before We oppose, or criticise or applaud or approve.
Your son John says it is better than War—that is all I know about it.—
tenderly Adieu
Keep all the Letters relating to our Sons.
RC (Adams Papers); endorsed: “Febry 2. 1795.”
1. John Jay, in a letter of 24 Nov. 1794 (Adams Papers), informed JA that he had received two letters from JQA, of 14 and 21 Nov. (Windsor Castle, Royal Archives:Autographs from Correspondence of Chief Justice Jay, 1776–1794; NNC:John Jay Papers).
JA’s critical opinion of Nicolaas van Staphorst likely stemmed from the banker’s recent flight from Amsterdam to Hamburg. A member of the Dutch republican movement, Van Staphorst in Oct. 1794 publicly petitioned for revolution should either the English, retreating from Belgium, be welcomed in the city or action be taken against the encroaching French forces. He escaped prosecution by temporarily fleeing to Hamburg, thereby leaving the banking firm in the hands of remaining partner Nicolaas Hubbard. Van Staphorst would shortly return, however, to assume a prominent place in the government established after the French invasion (Winter, Amer. Finance and Dutch Investment, 1:526–527; Schama, Patriots and Liberators, p. 176–177, 179, 190). For TBA’s account of these events, see M/TBA/2, 16 Nov., APM Reel 282. Reports of Van Staphorst’s petition first appeared in the Philadelphia American Daily Advertiser, 7 Jan. 1795.
In his letter to JQA of 11 Feb., below, JA expressed concern about the impact of Van Staphorst’s actions on American credit. In his answering letter of 4 May, JQA assured JA that “the political sufferings of Messrs: Van Staphorst had no more effect to the detriment of our credit than their present power has in its favour. It did not indeed affect their personal credit or property. Mr: Nicholas Van Staphorst, who on my arrival here had privately withdrawn from the pursuit of the then Government, is now a member of the States-General, and employed in some of the most important executive Committees. He is one of the most respectable men, engaged in the public affairs at present” (Adams Papers).
2. On 2 Feb. the Philadelphia American Daily Advertiser published a two-page supplement summarizing the London newspapers through 3 Dec. 1794, which had arrived { 369 } aboard the brig Columbia. Two of the extracts confirmed the successful conclusion to Jay’s treaty negotiations with the British, with one further noting that the messenger Jay had dispatched to deliver the news to America had sailed prior to the Columbia.

Docno: ADMS-04-10-02-0239

Author: Adams, John
Recipient: Adams, Charles
Date: 1795-02-02

John Adams to Charles Adams

[salute] Dear Charles

A Letter from Mr Jay of the 24. of November informs me, that he had recd two Letters from your Brother in Holland, one of the 14th. and another of the 20th. the first at the Hague the last at Amsterdam, which inform’d him that your Brother had been presented to their High Mightinesses, and recd and acknowledged by them, and that he had Afterwards had an Audience of the statholder. so that he had gone through his Ceremonies at the Hague and proceeded to Amsterdam upon Business. Inform your Brother and Sister smith of this: and I congratulate you all upon it. It is a Satisfaction to know that they had escaped all Danges of Seas and of Ennemies or Friends in their Passage, and that the Hague and Amsterdam were neither under Water, nor Obstructed in their Communication with each other.
We are in anxious Expectation of the Treaty with England. I cannot now think of leaving this Place till the Treaty is dispatched or Congress rises.
Mr Wolcott is nominated to Day in Place of Col Hamilton. Mr Jay I think will be at home in Season to be what you please to make him in New York.
Letters from your Brother are much to be desired for his Account of the state of Things will be well weighed, and very entertaining. I waited on the President to Day to communicate my little Letter, to him, to whom Mr Jay had written the Week before Dispatches which have not yet arrived at the Office.1
I am afraid I shall not find time to write you my remarks on The Lecture. It is an elegant Thing and the Course will be well worth your Attention.2 I am Dr sir / yours affectionately
[signed] John Adams
RC (MHi:Seymour Coll.); internal address: “Charles Adams Esqr.”
1. On 19 Nov. 1794 John Jay informed the president that negotiations had concluded and the treaty was signed earlier the same day (NNC:John Jay Papers). The diplomatic dispatches containing the treaty were finally received in Philadelphia on 7 March 1795 (Annals of Congress, 4th Cong., special sess., p. 855).
2. For James Kent’s Introductory Lecture, see JA’s first letter to CA, 14 Feb., and note 1, below.

Docno: ADMS-04-10-02-0240

Author: Adams, Abigail
Recipient: Adams, John
Date: 1795-02-07

Abigail Adams to John Adams

[salute] My dearest Friend

on thursday I received a Letter from Col Smith informing me of the Birth of a Grandaughter.1 this You may be sure was much more agreable to me than to have heard of an other Boy. Mrs Smith is finely too, he writes me. this is an additional Blessing, to hear of the safety of our Dear Children abroad, and to receive the news of our Daughters being well abed—and with a Daughter, has given Such a spring to my Spirits, that if your return was a Month later I would meet you at New York—
The climate is reversed— You have all the Snow & winter with you. our people have not been able to go once this winter with a sled into the woods, and but for Some Ice they could not have sleded a single stone. the Harbour has been open the whole season the Rivers froze for about ten days— we have frequent and abundent Southerly Rains— I hope you will not have so dissagreable a Time Home as you apprehend, tho March has frequently bad Roads—
We have as usual a Derth of News— no arrival from abroad, and as to Domestick occurrences I go so little from Home, that I know very little of them.
our Friends here are Well as usual. till within this fortnight it has been remarkably Healthey in Town. our Neighbour mr Blacks Family are very sick a Cousin of mr Blacks is very Bad with the fever and Ague which he took in N york state a Year ago— Jimmy & the other Man are sick with a Lung fever. I believe mr Blacks Cannel and the Situation of his House, are not Healthy.2 Your Mother has past through this Winter very comfortably. She has not misst a single week through the Winter, spending a day with me— I expect her to day as I have sent the Chaise for her—
Sinc I began this Letter a vessel has arrived this Day the News from England I have not yet learnt only that Amsterdam was not taken the 13 December I have a Letter from Mrs Copley Dated 15 Novbr
Many vessels saild for N York and Bosten about the same time. I think we may look for News of importance daily. France must dread a General peace. What will such a Nation do with Such Armies and no Government? it sees to be the Age of Political Wonders—
I hope a few weeks more will return You in Health and safety to Your ever / affectionate
[signed] Abigail Adams
{ 371 }
RC (Adams Papers); addressed by Louisa Catharine Smith: “The Vice President of the / United States / Philadelphia”; endorsed: “Mrs. A. Feb. 7. 1795.”
1. Not found.
2. Moses Black resided at the Quincy homestead. Black’s Creek, an outlet of Furnace Brook, flows on the property (Sprague, Braintree Families).

Docno: ADMS-04-10-02-0241

Author: Adams, John
Recipient: Adams, Charles
Date: 1795-02-07

John Adams to Charles Adams

[salute] Dear Charles

I was So happy in the News of the agreable Circumstances of your Sister and her Infant, and of the Safe Arrival of your Brothers at the Hague and Amsterdam, that the melancholly Account in your Letter of the 5th came upon me by Surprize and afflicted me very much.1 The detestable Cause of your sisters Misfortune the Infidelity or Negligence of the Apothecary, is alarming to every Body. The Violence of the Operation of the hateful Dose, in her weak Condition leaves room for the most allarming Apprehensions. I pray God, that her situation may not be so dangerous, as my fears incline me to forebode. I beg you to write me every day, and let me know the worst. Give my tenderest Love to her and her Family.
I am not without Anxiety on account of your health. You appeared to me, when you were here, to be too plethorick. There are innumerable Disorders which originate in Fulness, especially in a sendentary and a studious Life. You must rouse yourself from your Lethargy and take your Wallk every Day. When you cannot wallk abroad, wallk in your Room: open your Windows and air your Room as often as you can. Make it a rule not to sit long in the Same Place. Rise up now and then, open your Windows & wallk about your room a few Times, then sit down again to your Books or your Pen.
One of the most essential Things for a Lawyer is to study his Constitution and take Care of his Health.— Exercise is indispensible— No Regimen without it, will do. No Abstinence no Medicine, No Diet will Supply its Place. Move or die, is the Language of our Maker in the Constitution of our Bodies. Your Constitution is a very good one, and it will be unpardonable in you not to preserve it.
In my Youth I read a good deal of Physick and among other Books Dr Cheyne whose system is now exploded among Physicians—2 I nevertheless think his Writings well worth reading and that a great deal of Useful Knowledge may be obtained from them. sir John Pringles Diseases of the Army I also read with no small Advantage.—3 Cullens first Lines4—or Buchan— In short I think that every { 372 } Man of Letters ought early in Life to give some Attention to the Theory of Physick for the Benefit of his own health and that of his Friends. But without immediate Ennergy, Exertion and Activity, Charles your health will decline and your Mind will become weak, heavy and clumzy like your Body. I am tenderly / Your Father
[signed] John Adams
RC (MHi:Seymour Coll.); internal address: “Charles Adams Esq.”
1. Not found.
2. Dr. George Cheyne, The English Malady; or, A Treatise of Nervous Diseases of All Kinds, London, 1733.
3. Sir John Pringle, Observations on the Diseases of the Army, in Camp and Garrison, London, 1752.
4. William Cullen, First Lines of the Practice of Physic, 4 vols., Edinburgh, 1776–1784. A three-volume edition, published in Worcester, Mass., in 1790, Evans, No. 22435, is included among JA’s books at MB (Catalogue of JA’s Library).

Docno: ADMS-04-10-02-0242

Author: Adams, John
Recipient: Adams, Abigail
Date: 1795-02-09

John Adams to Abigail Adams

[salute] My dearest Friend

The Judges are now here— Judge Cushing is under the Hands of Dr Tate who is Said to have wrought many Cures of Cancers and particularly one for the President. The Judge appears to be under serious apprehensions for something in his Lip which he thinks is a Cancer but his hopes from Tates Prescriptions seem to be lively.1
Mrs Washington is happy in the Company of her three Grand daughters, the Eldest Patty and youngest Nelly whom you know are unmarried—the middle one is lately married to Mr Peters of George Town the son of a rich Gentleman of that Place. They are all three fine Women.
I have been Since Fryday very unhappy on Account of Nabby: she sent to an Apothecary for some Magnesia, and took it: but the negligent Wretch had sent her, something which operated as a violent Emetic, which in her weak State must be very disagreable. Although she was better when my Letter from Charles of the 5th. was dated,2 I am impatient for the Post to Arrive and bring me a further Account of her Condition.
Mr Jays Treaty is not arrived, and I must wait till it does.— A Battle royal I expect at its Ratification, and snarling enough afterwards.
I Admire the French Wit & Ingenuity of a Toast this Morning in Baches Paper

“Pichegru, Jourdan and Jay.”3

{ 373 }
It Snows plentifully at present.— I hope in your Letter which I expect to find at the senate Chamber to day you have acknowledged the Receipt of two Letters from Thomas in London. The Boys have been fortunate hitherto and I pray that they may be so through Life, and be made Useful Men. Their Country will want Men of Education acquainted with foreign Languages Manners Laws and Usages.
My Duty to my Mother and Love to all
Adieu
1. William Cushing, who lived until 1810, was likely under the care of Dr. James Tate (d. 1813), who had been a surgeon during the Revolutionary War. He had treated the president for a growth on his cheek the previous year (Washington, Papers, Retirement Series, 1:282).
2. Not found.
3. On 6 Feb. 1795 the anniversary of the 1778 Franco-American alliance was celebrated in Philadelphia with a military parade by the city’s second regiment and a dinner at Meyer’s Hotel, which featured a series of republican toasts, including “To Pichegru, Jourdan and Jay. Health and fraternity for their unwearied exertions in negociating a peace for this country” (Philadelphia Aurora General Advertiser, 9 Feb.).
Jean Baptiste Jourdan (1762–1833) had served in the American Revolution and was sucessfully leading troops in France’s war against Britain and her European allies. In mid-1794 he became commander in chief of the Armies of the North, Ardennes, and the Moselle and pushed the Austrians from Belgium. In 1795 his focus shifted to the Rhine Valley (Cambridge Modern Hist., 8:435–437; Hoefer, Nouv. biog. générale).

Docno: ADMS-04-10-02-0243

Author: Adams, Abigail
Recipient: Adams, John Quincy
Date: 1795-02-10

Abigail Adams to John Quincy Adams

[salute] my Dear son

It was with great pleasure that I received by Captain Perkings from Rotterdam your Letter of the 15th of December, which reachd me on the 7th of this Month, and is the first line from your Hand.1 A fortnight Since Your Father Sent me two Letters received from Thomas, one to him, and one to me, written in London the Day after His arrival. at the Same Time the Secretary of State received Letters from you, which your Father read. the Secretary exprest his intire satisfaction, and was pleasd to say, it was a well dijested well arranged, well connected Letter, that it was a proof of the Wisdom of the Appointment, and a pleasing presage of your future usefullness— as vanity is not a predominant principal with you, I thought this communication might give you pleasure, as it does me, and be some compensation for the many mortification you will be like to meet with in the course of your diplomatic carreer
I have written twice to you by way of London, once by Captain { 374 } Scott, and once by the Gallen.2 Several vessels, saild after you left us, for Amsterdam, but the uncertainty where to find you prevented my writing by them. it wanted 2 days of three Months when I heard of the arrival of the Alfrid in the Downs— vessels from England have had very long passages— The Treaty between Great Britain and America is hourly expected, but had not reachd Congress the 2d of this Month. it is well that the Senate only have the discussion of it. if it was to go to the House for Ratification, and was a Treaty from the Kingdom of Heaven, proclaming Peace on Earth and Good Will to Men, there would not be wanting Characters to defame and abuse it. as I feel satisfied from the well known, and establishd Character of mr Jay, that he would not put his Signature to any other, than a just and Equitable Treaty, mutually benificial to both Countries I presume at least two thirds of the Senate will be unanimous in a speedy ratification of it.
The new Elections for the Senate, are Said to be wise and good. mr King is ReElected for N york. he has lost his Father in Law, who has left him an estate of Sixty thousand pounds. Govenour Clinton declines an other Election as Govenour having secured an immense Landed Property, and betterd his circumstances by French politicks, and his connection with Genet he chuses to avoid an investigation. col Hamilton is put up as a canditate Burr is pitted against him, but when weigh’d in the balance, the latter must kick the Beam.3
The decline of the Jacobins in France has in some measure surpressd the venom of the Jacobins here but tis neither extracted or exhausted. it lies rankling in their Hearts, watching some favourable occasion, to burst forth its Deadly poison. yet every Blessing is ours which an all gracious Providence Showers down, even upon the ungratefull and unthankfull.
I cannot but hope that you may be mistaken respecting the continuence of war. I would fain flatter myself, that the Spirit of conquest, so gratefull to the Pride and ambition of Man, whether he wears a Diadem or a Red Cap, may at length yeald to the mild Beams of Mercy and phylanthropy, that the Dogs of war may be chained, and the Havock and Desolation which has scourged the Nations, and overwhelmd them with Blood and carnage, may no longer exhibit such scenes as lead a reflecting mind, not to doubt of the Being and perfections of a Deity, but to inquire wherefore it is that such judgments are Sent, and whether like Storms and Tempest they are commisoned to fullfill his word?
{ 375 }

“if plagues and Earthquakes break not Heavens design

Why then a Borgia or a Cataline”4

Our Friends here are all well and I am happy to inform you that on the 28 Janry Your Sister got well to Bed of a Daughter to the no Small gratification of the whole Family. both Mother and child were well when I last heard from them.
I miss you very much this winter. Your Fathers absence will not be of so long continuence as it was last Year. I expect his return by the 2d week in March—
This Letter goes by way of Hamburg Captain Marriot in the Brig Betsy is going a voyage there in the employ of messiurs W & J Cunningham5 I shall always write you when I know of an opportunity. I was much mortified when I learnt that mr J Freeman had s[aild] for England without my knowing it. Your aged Grandmo[the]r desires to be rememberd to you. she enjoys a tolerable state of Health— all your Friends present their Regards to you
I shall write to Thomas before the vessel sails if possible. if not let him know I acknowledg the recept of two Letters from him— adieu my dear son and always believe me most tenderly and affectionatly / Your Mother
[signed] Abigail Adams
RC (Adams Papers); endorsed by TBA: “Mrs A Adams / 10 Feby 1795 / 3 May Recd: / 16 Answd.” Some loss of text where the seal was removed.
1. JQA to AA, 13 Dec. 1794, above, was carried by Capt. Joseph Perkins of the ship Charles, which arrived in Newburyport from Rotterdam on 3 Feb. 1795 (M/TBA/2, 14 Dec. 1794, APM Reel 282; Newburyport Impartial Herald, 6 Feb. 1795).
2. The Galen, Capt. John Mackay, was scheduled to sail from Boston to London in late Dec. 1794 but apparently was delayed, enabling AA to send JQA her letter of 10 Jan. 1795, above (Boston Columbian Centinel, 27 Dec. 1794, 29 April 1795).
3. To be grossly outweighed (OED).
4. Alexander Pope, An Essay on Man, Epistle I, lines 155–156.
5. William Cunningham Jr., for whom see CFA, Diary, 1:146, and his brother James (1769–1822) were part of a Boston mercantile family and cousins to JA (Henry Winchester Cunningham, “Andrew Cunningham of Boston, and Some of His Descendants,” NEHGR, 55:416–420 [Oct. 1901]). In early 1795, the brothers advertised their brig Betsey, their uncle Philip Marett as captain, bound for Hamburg and accepting freight (Boston Columbian Centinel, 14 Jan. 1795; Ship Registers and Enrollments of Boston and Charleston, Boston, 1942, p. 15–16; Thwing Catalogue, MHi).

Docno: ADMS-04-10-02-0244

Author: Adams, John
Recipient: Adams, Abigail
Date: 1795-02-10

John Adams to Abigail Adams

[salute] My dearest Friend

I was not disappointed Yesterday, for the Post brought me your Letter of January. [] and I was relieved from an heavy Burthen of { 376 } anxiety On Account of Nabby by a Letter from Charles assuring me that she was much better and thought to be out of Danger.1 Your Gratitude for the kind Protection of Providence to your Family is as natural as it is pious. Few Families have oftener been at hazard, and fewer still have been so uniformly blessed with Protection, safety and Success. To look back and recollect the Adventures of myself and my Wife and Daughter and sons, I see a kind of Romance, which, a little Embellished with Fiction or Exageration or only poetical ornament, would equal any Thing in the Days of Chivalry or Knight Errantry.
Your Farmers Register is very Satisfactory. It is a great deal of Work to take Care of such stocks of Cattle and a great Quantity of other service cannot be expected of Joy & shaw, who have no Boys. I hope, Our shaw makes James and Prince assist him. I am sure they ought.
The inclosed Slip will shew you that Poor Jay has a fiery ordeal to go through—2 His Treaty dont arrive and I will not wait for it beyond the fourth of March— When I negotiated Treaties I sent Copies by five ships—or rather five Originals for I had so many executed.
I am very much afraid of this Treaty, but this is in Confidence.
with never ceasing Affection / Adieu
RC (Adams Papers); endorsed: “Febry 10 1795.”
1. AA to JA, [post 28] Jan., above.
2. Enclosure not found but possibly from the Philadelphia Aurora General Advertiser, which between 6 and 10 Feb. published several comments regarding the treaty, most of which condemned it. On 6 Feb. one writer stated, “the treaty does not deserve a day of thanksgiving; for it appears that America has lost more than she has gained by it.” On 9 Feb. another contributor claimed that a treaty with Great Britain was “impracticable,” and the following day John Jay’s diplomatic mission was called “unconstitutional.”

Docno: ADMS-04-10-02-0245

Author: Adams, Abigail
Recipient: Adams, Thomas Boylston
Date: 1795-02-11

Abigail Adams to Thomas Boylston Adams

[salute] my Dear Son Thomas

When you address me again, let it be by the endearing Epithet of Mother, instead of the formal one Madam; I Should have thought your partiality for your Friends the Quakers would have prevented your substituting any other Epithet. and now having in a few words setled a point respecting titles, a subject which has occupied a great Legislature for many days, and occasiond much warmth and Heat, the Mad—sonian party, insisting that previous to Naturalization, all foreigners should renounce their titles, the other Party contending, that it was the priviledges annexed to Titles which renderd them of { 377 } concequence, that by the American Constitution no Man could hold a title, that Naturalization excluded him from titles as an American and that it was childish for that House to cavil at the Name of Baron Duke or Lord or Bishop which could have no effect here, and that obliging a Man to renounce them, might affect his interest in other Countries where estates were frequently annexd to titles. upon this the Yeas and Nays were call’d for. this occasiond much warmth, as it was then considerd as an Art to fix a stigma upon those who considerd the Subject too trifling in itself to occupy the House, but knowing the aversion in the Americans to the Bug Bear, it was supposed to be done to create a new allarm, and raise a cry of Aristocracy against all who opposed the motion. the vote was however insisted upon and taken and, Northern & Southern pitted against each other 58 Ayes 32 Nays—1
I have my Dear Son to acknowledg the Receipt of a two Letters from you, one written immidiately after your arrival in London, and the other from the Hague the 12 December one which your Brother mentions haveing written from London I have not received. I have a letter from mrs Copley 15 Novbr infoming me that She had procured and sent the silk for Mrs Welch. I thank you for your attention to this and my other commission, but there was one of more importance to me, of which I fear both Your Brother and you were unmindfull, and I have no fancy for a stiff Dutchman. I mean the Minatures for Braclets which I wish to have taken an Executed in England. the expence of them I should request the Willinks to reimburse. the Setting of them in gold with the Hair in cypher I would have executed by an old acquaintance of mine in cheepside Savory by Name, a Quaker a very honest and honorable silver smith and Jeweler from whom I used to procure all articles which I had occasion for in that way.2
I feel your embarrassment in a foreign Country the Language of which You cannot speak. I know by experience how unpleasent it is, but that is a difficulty which will daily diminish. I rejoice that you are with your Brother. I am sure either of you alone must have been triste. England you know is the Country of my greatest partiality. Holland appeard to me Such a place of still Life, Amsterdam & Roterdam excepted, that I thought I could not be reconciled to become an inhabitant of it, and I perfectly assented to Sir William Temples Character of it, that it was a Country where the Earth is better than the Air, and profit more in request than honour, where there is more sense than Wit, and more Wealth than pleasure, more good Nature { 378 } than good humour, where a Man would chuse rather to travel than to Live, where he would find more things to observe than to desire, & more persons to esteem than to Love.3 altho tis near a century since this Character was drawn, you will soon perceive that it, need not Sit for a New Likeness you will find many things in the Country well worthy your attention Some of those which I particularly remember, and which I would recommend to your notice. the statue of Erasmus, upon the great Bridge in the Grand market place at Rotterdam is one of them, and indeed Rotterdam itself is a curiosity. the Spaciousness of the streets and the Elegance of the Houses surpass those at Amsterdam. the Sight of Houses Masts of Ships—and the tops of Trees promiscuously huddeld together is at once Novel and Romantic. if you had any opportunity whilst in England to visit any of the celebrated Gardens and pleasure grounds, were it only those within a few miles of the city, Such as osterley place Sion House, or Tilney House, they would give you a through disgust to the stile of gardening in Holland where

“Grove Nods to Grove, each alley has a Brother

And half the platform, justs reflects the other”4

and yet you will find much expence. their walks are all a soft sand instead of the hard gravel of England. an object which struck me with the true sublime, was my ride from the Hague to scheveling. the strait Road and fine Trees are pleasing, but at the end, the Broad ocean opens Suddenly upon you when you have no suspicion of it, and creates a most pleasing sensation. in The Prines of oranges Cabinet at the Hague I thought there was the neatest, tho not the largest collection of curiosities Which I had met with, and according to the custom of the Country preserved in the nicest manner. in the little room call’d the Study are a fine collection of paintings by Dutch and Flemish Masters
There was one by Potter which You may have heard me mention. it is a Rural Scene, cattle drinking and their shade reflected in the Water, the flies upon the Cows seem alive, and a Toad Sitting upon the Grass is equally excellent.5
Leyden utrech, Harlem, all have monuments of Art worthy a strangers notice & the painted Glass in windows in a Church at Gorcum are a great curiosity. all these and many others which I visited I can traverse again with you, and it renews the pleasure to recite it to one who is going to enjoy the same gratifications6
{ 379 }
If the French get possession of Holland I hope they will not continue to war with the fine Arts as they have done
as you will see your Brothers Letter you will learn Domestic occurrences from that. present my respects to old mr Dumas to the Willinks Families—and to all others who recollect Your / ever affectionate Mother
[signed] Abigail Adams
RC (Adams Papers); endorsed: “Mrs A Adams / 11 February 1795 / 3 May Recd / 17 Do & 7th: June Answd:.”
1. For the Giles amendment, see AA to JA, 16 Jan., and note 1, above.
2. Joseph Savory, a goldsmith and jeweler in London’s Cheapside district (Henry Kent, Kent’s Directory, London, 1785).
3. AA quotes the description of Holland made by British diplomat Sir William Temple to close the fourth chapter of Observations upon the United Provinces of the Netherlands, London, 1673. A copy of Temple’s Works, 2 vols., London, 1731, is in JA’s library at MB (Catalogue of JA’s Library).
4. Alexander Pope, Moral Essays, Epistle IV, lines 117–118.
5. AA conflates two paintings by the Dutch painter Paulus Potter (1625–1654). “The Bull,” painted in 1647, depicts in rich detail a young bull with flies buzzing around its back and surrounded by a farmer, a cow, three sheep, and a small frog. The second painting, “Cows Reflected in the Water,” dates to 1648 and depicts a herd of cattle at the edge of a pond. Both paintings were part of the collection assembled by William V, Prince of Orange and Stadholder of the Netherlands, for whom see JA, Papers, 12:xiii. The prince built a gallery on the Buitenhof in The Hague and opened his collection to the public in 1774 (Ben Broos, The Mauritshuis: Royal Cabinet of Paintings Mauritshuis and Gallery Prince William V, transl. Phil Goddard, London, 1994, p. 18, 20, 120, 122; Amy Walsh, Edwin Buijsen, and Ben Broos, Paulus Potter: Painting, Drawings, and Etchings, The Hague, 1994, p. 74, 95).
6. For AA’s descriptions of her travels through the Netherlands in 1786, see vol. 7:315–317, 318–320, 324–325, 333–336. The church was Sint Janskerk in Gouda, for which see vol. 7:335, 339.

Docno: ADMS-04-10-02-0246

Author: Adams, John
Recipient: Adams, Charles
Date: 1795-02-11

John Adams to Charles Adams

[salute] Dear Charles

Your Letter of the 7th relieved my Mind, from a great Anxiety and Depression on Account of my dear Daughter.1 My Apprehensions foreboded very melancholly Things from the Strange Accident, of which you apprised me— A strict Enquiry ought to be made into the Conduct of that Apothecary.
The State of New York never behaved well— it has always been a fluctuating, injudicious selfish and unaccommodating Member of the Union— Always intriguing against the Eastern states with all their Ennemies whom they could either find or make among the southern and middle states. It is no great Wonder to me that they are to send Us Six Democrats as you Say.2
The Senate will be more fœderal next year than it has ever been, { 380 } and will not be warped into Measures essentially wrong by your six democrats.
You have represented the Absurdity, of Mr Jays Criticks and Censurers, with a good deal of Wit and Spirit. The Language you have put into their Mouths is as manly decent and delicate as any they have Used, a long time, in Conversation or in Print.
Keep me informed from Day to Day of your sisters Health and her family.
I know not whether I can get away from Philadelphia before the 4 or 5. or 6th. of March as Mr Jays Treaty will be hourly expected and Although the Constitution allows me no Vote in any possible Case of the Ratification of a Treaty I suppose it will be expected by my Friends that I should say and see how they vote.
In Senate We have had the calmest Session I ever knew— The Waves are smoothed and the roughness even of light Airs polished as if Franklin had Sprinkled his Oil from the Head of his Bamboo Cane over the Pool.3
When will your Electioneering Campaign begin? Mr Burr is as lively as a Sparrow— His Eyes glister and his Cheek glows, perhaps both with Ambition and Love. He hops about from spray to Spray and chirps and chatters like a Canary Bird. Will Mr Jay be Governor or Mr Burr?
I am, dear Charles your Affectionate / Father
[signed] John Adams
RC (MHi:Seymour Coll.); internal address: “Charles Adams.”
1. Not found.
2. During New York’s Dec. 1794 election, the Democratic-Republicans claimed six of the state’s ten congressional seats. The incumbents Theodorus Bailey, Jonathan Havens, and Philip Van Cortlandt were returned. John Hathorn reclaimed the seat he had lost in 1792, and Edward Livingston and John Williams were newly elected (Young, Democratic Republicans, p. 419–422).
3. One of Benjamin Franklin’s many scientific experiments involved testing the calming effect of oil on water. Having first tried the theory on a pond in Clapham, England, in the 1760s or early 1770s, Franklin thereafter “contrived to take with me, whenever I went into the Country, a little Oil in the upper hollow joint of my bamboo Cane, with which I might repeat the Experiment as Opportunity should offer; and I found it constantly to succeed” (Franklin, Papers, 20:463–474).

Docno: ADMS-04-10-02-0247

Author: Adams, John
Recipient: Adams, John Quincy
Date: 1795-02-11

John Adams to John Quincy Adams

[salute] My dear Son

Mr Wilcocks a Son of Mr Wilcocks a respectable Lawyer of this City is bound to Hamborough and from thence intends to go to Holland where I hope you will Shew him as much Civility as you can. He will be able to tell you all the news we have.1
{ 381 }
Congress has had the most Serene Session I ever knew. We are waiting for Mr Jays Treaty and hope it will Settle all disputes with England and quiet many Animosities in America. The Senate for the next two Years will be the most decidedly for Peace & order of any which has ever Served under the Constitution.
I am under Some concern for American Credit in Amsterdam, on Account of the political Situation of the House of the Van Staphorsts. You will embrace every Opportunity to write, through Mr Jay and Mr Pinkney or some other Person in England as well as by other direct or indirect Conveyances: for the Benefit of your Services to the Publick, and the Interests of your own Reputation will depend upon the frequency and Punctuality of your Correspondence with the Secretary of State. Your first Letter, the only one as yet received gave good Satisfaction. I have not yet recd any from you and only one from your Brother.
Your Mother Brothers and Sister with her Children including a Daughter are all well. Charles is in good Business and is, as Mr Burr Says a Steady Man of Business.
Col Humphreys and Mr Cutting arrived here this Week: but upon what Enterprizes or Adventures I know not.2
Our Insurrections and Jacobin Clubbs are all en bas, at present.
I Shall be at Quincy by the Middle of March and remain there probably till the middle of November.
Write me some Account of my old Friends and present my cordial regards to them.
Jarvis rules the House in Boston but cannot get into Congress, as yet.
I am my dear son, with as much / Esteem as Sincere and tender Affection / your Father
[signed] John Adams
RC (Adams Papers); internal address: “J.Q. Adams Esqr”; endorsed by TBA: “The Vice President of the U. S.— / 11 Feby 1795 Philada: / 29 April Recd / 4 May Answd.”
1. Likely Benjamin Chew Wilcocks (1776–1845), who was later important to developing the U.S.–China trade. He was the second son of Alexander Wilcocks (1741–1801), College of Philadelphia 1761, a respected lawyer and the recorder of Philadelphia (Charles P. Keith, The Provincial Councillors of Pennsylvania, Phila., 1883, p. 331–332; Jean Gordon Lee, Philadelphians and the China Trade 1784–1844, Phila., 1984, p. 44).
2. Diplomat David Humphreys had been charged in March 1793 with negotiating the release of American hostages in Algiers. By Nov. 1794, the Dey of Algiers appeared open to negotiations, but Humphreys felt obligated to travel to the United States to discuss settlement terms directly with the state department. He arrived in Philadelphia on 10 Feb. 1795 (Hamilton, Papers, 18:14–15; Sibley’s Harvard Graduates, 17:538–540; Philadelphia Gazette, 12 Feb.).
Humphreys’ companion on the journey was Nathaniel Cutting, who had received the dual appointments of consul to the Port of { 382 } Le Havre de Grâce and secretary to Humphreys during the Algerian mission, in Feb. and March 1793, respectively (Washington, Papers, Presidential Series, 12:189, 190, 456; Jefferson, Papers, 25:470–471).

Docno: ADMS-04-10-02-0248

Author: Adams, John
Recipient: Adams, Thomas Boylston
Date: 1795-02-11

John Adams to Thomas Boylston Adams

[salute] My dear Thomas

Your Letter of the 19 of October from London gave me great Joy and all your other Friends of whom you have many much Pleasure— And I was again highly delighted to hear from Mr Jay that he had Letters from your Brother at Amsterdam the 20th of Novr.
Mr Wilcocks who is kind enough to take Charge of this Letter is probably an Acquaintance of yours: You must take him with you in your Daily Walks for your health, and shew him as many Places Persons and Curiosities as you can.
Europe must be a new World to You. Entertainment, Information and Instruction may be obtained wherever you go. The civil Law and the Law of Nature and Nations are to be obtained in Holland as in some sort their natural Country. The Politicks of Europe are seen from thence as well as from any Place whatever. Arts science Litterature are to be met with in every street almost.
But the English Language and English as well as American Law must, I fear lie dormant for some time.
Inclosed are some Newspapers for your Brother and you which will shew you the News Debates &c1 But We shall have nothing very interesting here till Mr Jays Treaty Arrives. Our People are very quiescent at present and our Self created societies a little humbled. Our Six Per Cent stocks have risen to Par and will not probably again fall—2
I feel the Want of your society: but your Travels will be a great Advantage to you and that consideration composes me.— You have lost the opportunity of seeing two sisters of Miss Nelly Custis older than her; Patty who is unmarried and Betsy who is married to Mr Peters of George Town. Fine Girls I assure you. Your young Acquaintance here are all well excepting Mr Clymer, whose Death you must have heard of.—
Our Family and Friends are all well. I want you or your Brother to Purchase Cujacius for me— Keep it for your own study sometime and then send it to me, or bring it when you come. Buy the best Edition.3 Gail and Hoppius and Vinnius you may get at a moderate { 383 } Price sometimes and often little Compendiums of Justinian for a trifle.4
I long to have a detail of your Travels, especially in Holland. You will soon get the Language, and Spreek with the Mynheers in their own Hollandsh—
The French too will be indispensable. When you travel in that Country you will run about in the Trecht Schuits. Dont let any vain notions of Dignity lead you to despize this method of travelling, it is the most agreable least expensive, most instructive, and most wholesome mode of conveyance in that Country.
Go to an English or French Church every Sunday and become acquainted with the Clergymen.
I am my dear son with a tender / solicitude for your Welfare your affectionate / Father
[signed] John Adams
RC (Adams Papers); internal address: “T. B. Adams Esqr”; endorsed: “The Vice President of the United States / 11 Feby 1795 / 29 April Recd:.”
1. Enclosures not found.
2. For much of February, the value of 6 percent bonds remained at par value. A weekly snapshot of stock prices through July, when the treaty was made public, reveals little fluctuation with values dropping no lower than 19.2 and even rising above par on 20 June (Philadelphia Gazette of the United States, 3 Feb. – 31 July).
3. Jacques Cujas was a sixteenth-century legal scholar who published several works on jurisprudence. In 1658, his collected writings were edited by Charles Annibal Fabrot and published in Paris as Jacobi Cujacii, … Opera omnia, in decem tomos distributa. This ten-volume edition is part of JA’s library at MB (Catalogue of JA’s Library).
4. Offering comment on Justinian’s Institutes were Andreas von Gail, Practicarum observationum, tam ad processum judiciarium, praesertim imperialis camerae, Cologne, 1578; Joachim Hoppe, Commentatio succincta ad Institutiones Justinianeas, Danzig, 1693; and Arnoldus Vinnius, Commentarius … institutionum imperialium, Leyden, 1642.
Among JQA’s books at MQA are three editions of Justinian’s Institutes, two of which were published in Leyden, undated and 1761, and one in Paris, 1770; and Vinnius, published in Amsterdam, 1665. At one time JQA’s library also included a copy of Hoppe, published in Frankfurt, 1728. The copies of Vinnius and Hoppe were inscribed by him on 4 Dec. 1794 (Catalog of the Books Housed in the Stone Library Adams National Historic Site, Quincy, Mass., 1994; Catalogue of JQA’s Books).

Docno: ADMS-04-10-02-0249

Author: Adams, Abigail
Recipient: Ceracchi, Giuseppe
Date: 1795-02-12

Abigail Adams to Giuseppe Ceracchi

Accept Sir my acknowledgment to you for the very valuable present of the Medallion, and the polite Letter which accompanied it. The workmanship is too exquisite, and reflects too much honor upon the Artist, to be lodged in a Private House. Works of this kind are a Novelty in America, and were I to accept it, it would be considerd as an object of vanity.
{ 384 }
The American are not accustomed to any other monuments or impressions of those whom they most esteem and value,1 but what is stampd upon their Hearts, nor will they even permit a perfect impression there, untill the recollection of importent Services renderd them, can no longer excite Envy.
Will you Sir do me the favour to present the Medallion to the Massachussets Accademy of Arts. it may be addresst to their vice President, who is President of Harverd Colledg.2 I will take charge of the conveyance of it.
any further information you may wish for, you may obtain from mr Adams—
present my compliments to mrs Cerachi and the Sweet Boy whom I Saw3
I am sir with Sentiments of esteem / your much obliged Humble Servant
[signed] Abigail Adams
Dft (Adams Papers); docketed: “Copy. Ceracchi”; “AA 1795”; and “Mrs Adams to / Mr Cerachi.” Dft (Adams Papers).
1. AA initially used “venerate” but wrote “value” over it. She also used “venerate” in the second, earlier Dft of the letter.
2. Joseph Willard was one of the founding members of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences in 1780, serving as corresponding secretary and then vice president (DAB).
For a discussion of Ceracchi’s gift and AA and JA’s decision to donate the medallion, see JA to AA, 2 Dec. 1794, and note 3, above.
3. Ceracchi’s family included his wife, Therese Schlishan Ceracchi, and at least four children, the eldest of whom were sons Giovanni and Romualdo (Alberto M. Ghisalberti and others, eds., Dizionario biografico degli Italiani, 73 vols. to date, Rome, 1960– ).

Docno: ADMS-04-10-02-0250

Author: Adams, John Quincy
Recipient: Adams, Abigail
Date: 1795-02-12

John Quincy Adams to Abigail Adams

4.

[salute] My Dear Madam.

The arrival of the french Army in this Country, as the friends and allies of the Batavian People, and the Revolution, which has abolished the Stadholdership, the nobility, the former States of the Provinces, and the Regencies of the Cities, will undoubtedly be a subject of considerable attention in our Country; perhaps it may give occasion to many groundless rumours and reports, and possibly you may feel more than usually desirous to hear from your children, though there was no occasion for anxiety on their account.
You may therefore rest assured, that every thing here is in perfect tranquility; that personal liberty, individual property, and private opinions have not ceased for a moment to be respected. That with { 385 } seventy thousand french Republicans in the Province, the Streets of the Cities are as quiet as those of Boston. That among the People even the partizans of the former Government are not injured, molested or insulted, but only disarmed, and in short that all the external appearance of an alteration is a three coloured instead of a yellow ribband.
But we seem to be entirely secluded from the rest of the world. All the foreign communications are interrupted; even that with France is not yet restored.1 Intelligence from America therefore has become more uncommon, and more inaccessible than ever.— In the course of five months since we sailed from Boston, one short Letter from the Secretary of State constitutes, the whole receipt of our Correspondence from our Country.2 We hope you will not miss the opportunity of any vessel from Boston to Amsterdam or Rotterdam; and indeed as the communication with England from hence, may continue to be interrupted, We wish our friends also to write us by the way of Hamburg or Bremen; enclosing their Letters in the former case, to John Parish, & in the latter to Arnold Delius, Consuls of the United States in those two Ports.3
The Winter has been very unusually severe, but appears now to be breaking up. With respect to ourselves, the best information we have to give you is that we are in good Health and Spirits; we can hardly imagine a greater pleasure than we should receive in hearing the same from you.
Tilly is well too, and has got to be very serviceable. His Honesty makes him extremely valuable to us, for that quality has not become more common among the Servants to be had in Europe, than it was seven years ago.
The Messrs: Willink will send you the Articles, for which you sent as soon as possible; but there has hitherto been no opportunity to Boston, and we can scarcely foresee when there will be.
Please to remember us in duty and affection to our venerable Grandmother, and to our other relations and friends at Quincy and Boston.
From your affectionate Son
[signed] John Q. Adams.4
RC (Adams Papers); internal address: “Mrs: Adams. Quincy.”; endorsed: “J Q Adams 1795 / Febry 12.” LbC (Adams Papers); APM Reel 128.
1. The letter to this point was published in the Boston Columbian Centinel, 2 May.
2. Edmund Randolph to JQA, 8 Nov. 1794 (Adams Papers), in which Randolph informed JQA about recent domestic events, including the yellow fever outbreak in Philadelphia and Baltimore and the insurrection in western Pennsylvania. Randolph further { 386 } inquired about the status of U.S. diplomatic funds and if JQA would look into the resale value of the Hôtel des États-Unis, for which see JA, D&A, 3:ix–x, 4–5. JQA received and replied to Randolph’s letter on 22 Dec. 1794 (Lb/JQA/3, APM Reel 127).
3. John Parish was named consul at Hamburg in 1793. Bremen merchant Arnold Delius was appointed consul to that city in May 1794 (JA, Papers, 14:288, 289, 429; Washington, Diaries, 6:298).
4. JQA also wrote a letter to JA of the same date, in which he provided a detailed description of the Dutch surrender to French control (Adams Papers).

Docno: ADMS-04-10-02-0251

Author: Adams, Abigail
Recipient: Adams, John
Date: 1795-02-13

Abigail Adams to John Adams

[salute] My Dearest Friend

It is peculiarly unfortunate that the Treaty has not yet reachd Ameria. on the 19 November it was sign’d, and the vessel which brings the King of Englands speach left London 5 Jan’ry in that he announces the conclusion of a Treaty with America, and that the States General of the united Provinces were carrying on negotiation with France for Peace.1 I believe he will find however dissagreeable that his Ministers must enter into negotiations with the ruling powers—or have the whole Force of France leveld against his kindom
I inclose our Sons Letters to you [I wo]uld have done it before, but I thought as JQA mentiond publick [dis]patches by this vessel from Rotterdam, that it was likly he had written to you, and then I wishd to keep them to answer them by a vessel going to Hamburg which I have done. just as you are about to rise a flood of Buisness will pour in upon you. Col Humphries’s arrival portends some matters of concequence
I should have been exceeding happy to have had you here at the time mentiond, but think your reason just, and judicious for remaining at a Time of such expectation as you will not be here, I shall go to Town, and accept one or other of the pressing invitations I have received from thence to keep thanksgiving there. You cannot but remark that each of our Thoughts run in the same channel. in many instances we have been expressing the same sentiments at the same time as may be calld the Tellegraph of the Mind— if it were not for the altercation which the Jacobin clubs occasion, we should have an unruffeld scene throughout the united states. all our Country growing Rich, except the publick Drudges, and the Ministers of the Gospel.
I have so little interesting to communicate to you in my Letters, that your anxiety to receive them, can arise from no other Scource than a desire to know weekly that I am not Sick. even the canker worm and Caterpillar do not yet furnish a Subject. I believe our { 387 } { 388 } present Tennants mean to remain an other Year I have directed them to cut & cart to each House two cords of pine wood which they have nearly compleated. that with the Brush they may get will supply them for the Dairy Buisness
Dr Tufts meets with difficulty in procuring the fenceing stuff, as the Swamps have not been sufficiently frozen to get it out. there is a vessel now going to Philadelp[hia] the Abbe captain Davis, by which mr Brisler may ship such things as I wrote for2
I yesterday received yours—29 Janry Febry 1 & 2 together with mr Jays Letter. the contents are agreable
The Weather here is mild the Ground Bare. Febry has been a cloudy Month ever since it came in. my Love to mrs otis cousin Betsy &c—and my Respects to Mrs Washington
Your ever affectionate
[signed] A Adams
RC (Adams Papers); addressed by Louisa Catharine Smith: “The Vice President of the / United States / <Philadelphia> / Quincy / near / Boston”; endorsed: “Mrs. A. Feb. 13. 1795.” Some loss of text where the seal was removed. This is the first of two letters originally addressed to JA in Philadelphia but redirected to Quincy, presumably after JA left Philadelphia on 19 February.
1. AA’s information derives from the Boston Federal Orrery, which on 9 Feb. printed news from London to 5 January. The newspaper reprinted George III’s speech to Parliament on 30 Dec. 1794, in which the king reported that negotiations between the Dutch and French had begun but would not alter England’s intended course. He further announced the successful conclusion of treaty negotiations with the United States, albeit without specifying details of the treaty itself.
2. The sloop Abby, Capt. Obediah Doane, arrived in Philadelphia on 9 March after a voyage of twenty days (Boston Columbian Centinel, 7 Feb.; Philadelphia Gazette, 9 March).

Docno: ADMS-04-10-02-0252

Author: Adams, Charles
Recipient: Adams, John
Date: 1795-02-13

Charles Adams to John Adams

[salute] My Dear Sir

I received your favor of the eleventh yesterday. Mrs Smith has quite recovered from her illness and is doing very well
Our electioneering campaign was opened in due form last monday that is to say that The Freeholders of this City were called together to hear who were the men whom Ricd Harrison Robt Troup and Josiah Ogden Hoffman would chuse to have made Govr and Lt Govr of the State.1 The next evening there was another meeting where The Livingstons proposed their officers. The result is that on one side Mr Jay and Mr Van Rensalaer are started and on the other Messrs Yates and Floyd;2 nothing now remains to be done but for { 389 } each party to endeavour to out lie out villify and out detract the other To crop laurels e’en from the brows of friends to adorn the heads of their respective candidates Mr Yates though Chief Justice of this State is a man of no respectability of character He will sit tipling from morning to night in the dirtiest bar room of a tavern playing backgammon or checkers with the lowest of its inhabitants yet he is a great favorite with many people and will have more votes perhaps than Clinton had at the last election. Mr Floyd I need say nothing of you know him much better than I do. But where is Mr Bur[r?] I am inclined to believe he has some deep […] scheme to outwit them all or that he does not intend to stand his election. The Livingstons hate Burr and he hates them so that there will be no cordiallity between those Champions.
We shall send you as Representative from Washington and Saratoga District one Genl Williams who a few years since was turned out of our State Senate for perjury and peculation but who has been since constantly returned as a Senator and is now elected by a very large majority.3 what a glorious specimen of the virtue of the State of New York!!!
The contemplation upon such elections affords nothing but melancholy reflections. I do not suppose the people will grow more virtuous or have less knaves to deceive them hereafter than they have at present.
With real affection I am your son
[signed] Chas Adams
RC (Adams Papers); addressed: “The Vice President of the United States / Philadelphia”; endorsed: “C. Adams. Feb. 13. / 1795.” Some loss of text where the seal was removed.
1. Richard Harison, Josiah Ogden Hoffman, and Robert Troup were likely members of the Federalist caucus that chose John Jay and Stephen Van Rensselaer as candidates in the New York gubernatorial election of 1795 (Young, Democratic Republicans, p. 433–434).
For Robert Troup, see vol. 9:276. Richard Harison (1747–1829), King’s College 1764, was a lawyer appointed U.S. district attorney in New York in 1789. Josiah Ogden Hoffman (1766–1837), also a lawyer, served in the state legislature from 1791 to 1795 before becoming the state attorney general in Nov. 1795 (Colonial Collegians; DAB; Doc. Hist. Supreme Court, 5:557, 8:193, 194).
2. Stephen Van Rensselaer (1764–1839), Harvard 1782, was one of New York’s landed elite. A staunch Federalist, he had served in the state assembly in 1789 and 1790 and then the state senate from 1791 to 1795. His opponent, William Floyd (1734–1821), had a long record of political service. A signer of the Declaration of Independence and member of the Continental Congress from 1774 to 1776 and again from 1779 until 1783, Floyd had also been a member of the New York senate in 1777, 1778, and from 1784 to 1788. He served in the U.S. House of Representatives between 1789 and 1791. Floyd lost his bid for lieutenant governor in 1795. Van Rensselaer would hold the office until 1801 (Biog. Dir. Cong.; DAB).
3. The English-born John Williams settled { 390 } in New York in 1773 and fought with the Americans during the Revolutionary War, rising to the rank of brigadier general. Elected to New York’s first state senate in 1777, he was expelled for embezzling from the militia. He was nonetheless reelected in 1784 and continued to serve in the state senate until 1795 (Young, Democratic Republicans, p. 50, 422).

Docno: ADMS-04-10-02-0253

Author: Adams, John
Recipient: Smith, Abigail Adams
Date: 1795-02-13

John Adams to Abigail Adams Smith

[salute] My Dear Daughter:

I heartily congratulate you on your fortunate escape from a dangerous accident. I was so very solicitous for your safety for two or three days, that I had a great mind to go to New-York, to see you: but the next post brought me from your brother the delightful news of your recovery.1
I have great reason to be thankful to a kind Providence, for the preservation of my children, and for many blessings on my family. The arrival of your brothers at the Hague, and Amsterdam, in these dangerous times, is a great comfort to me, and I hope they will avail themselves of the great advantages they have to become valuable men.
Enclosed is another letter to Mr. Jay of the 10th of August, 1782, which I desire you to file with the others.2 They will all together sufficiently decide the question, whether Mr. Jay joined Mr. A. or, Mr. A. Mr. Jay, in the project of refusing to treat till we were acknowledged to be Ministers of a Sovereign Power.
A question of some little importance to personal and family feelings, though of very little to the public. If Mr. Jay, did not receive the first suggestion from me, which I have no doubt was the case, he certainly only conceived by his own reflections the same opinion, and resolution which I had urged and insisted on to the Count de Vergennes above a year before.
My love to Mr. Smith, and my little boys, and little girl, whom I long to see—what is her name?
I am, my dear daughter, / With a tender affection, / Yours,
[signed] John Adams.
MS not found. Printed from AA2, Jour. and Corr., 2:139–140; internal address: “To Mrs. Smith.”
1. CA’s letter to JA of 7 Feb. has not been found.
2. In this letter, JA declined John Jay’s request, made to JA in a 2 Aug. 1782 letter, that JA come to Paris from the Netherlands. JA’s decision stemmed in part from his desire to complete treaty negotiations with the Dutch before entering into peace negotiations with the British; however, he also believed the United States should be expressly recognized { 391 } by the British government before negotiations proceeded (JA, Papers, 13:214–216, 227–228).
This was the final letter JA forwarded to AA2 addressing his role in the peace negotiations. For the others, see JA to AA2, 2, 19 Jan. 1795; WSS to JA, 9 Jan.; and JA to WSS, 17 Jan., all above.

Docno: ADMS-04-10-02-0254

Author: Adams, John
Recipient: Adams, Charles
Date: 1795-02-14

John Adams to Charles Adams

[salute] Dear Charles

As you Seem to wish to know my sentiments of Mr Kents Lecture I will give you a few Hints to assist your own Reflections and Inquiries but as they may be liable to misconstruction and Misrepresentation, they must be in Confidence between you and me.1
I am much pleased with the Lecture, and esteem the Talents and Character of the Professor: indeed I wish you to consider whatever I may write upon the subject as Queries proposed for your Research, rather than as opinions of mine, much less as Lessons didactically inculcated by a Father upon a Son.
I can Scarcely Say with Mr Kent, in the first & second Page that “the Attention of Mankind is Strongly engaged in Speculations on the Principles of Public Policy.” I see a general Dissolution of Society, a general Absence of Principle, a general Scamble of Factions for Power, but the Sincere Inquirers after Truth, the impartial Investigators of Principles are yet to appear. And after they shall appear, Miracles must be wrought, for what I see, before Mankind will respect and Adopt their Discoveries.
“The human Mind, says Mr Kent, which had been so long degraded by the Fetters of Feudal and Papal Tyranny, has begun to free herself from Bondage” When We speak of the human Mind We mean commonly in Europe: and there it is true Feudal and Papal Tyranny have declined. I shall say nothing of Popery at present, having chiefly in view the civil part of our subject. Feudal Tyranny has declined, but it may still be a question whether the human mind has proportionably freed itself from Bondage. Instead of Feudal Tyranny the Tyranny of national Debts, Taxes and Funds & stocks were Substituted: and it has been Sometimes a serious Question which was worst? Are the Standing Armies of Europe, which have created the Debts & Taxes, freer Men, than the Retainers and Tenants of the Feudal Barons? I trow not. Are not the People now universally tributary to the Holders of Stock, the Public Creditors,? obliged to labour as much to pay them, as they did formerly to pay their Landlords? It must be confessed that the funding systems have { 392 } been more friendly to Arts sciences, Agriculture Commerce Manufactures & Industry, than the Feudal System: they have also promoted more Corruption and Luxury and the Destruction of all Principle. They may have converted an ardour for honour and military Glory into universal Avarice. one Passion is exchanged for another one Tyranny is substituted for another: but it is not yet quite clear, that the “human Mind has even begun to free herself from Bondage.” or if it has begun it has made little Progress.
The Funding Systems and standing Armies have grown to Such an height of Tyranny and oppression, that Mankind can bear them no longer and they are shaking their shoulders to throw them off— and in the Struggle are increasing the Evil, by doubling both Debts Taxes & armies. Are they nearer freeing themselves from Bondage?
They have now Substituted a new Species of Bondage, without destroying the old one.— In france they have destroyed Monarchy & Nobility but they have substituted a Tyranny of Clubbs and Majorities, which for the time has been the worst Tyranny that ever existed among Men. They have committed more Cruelties in one night than the whole House of Bourbon ever committed from the Accession of H. 4. to the Death. of L. 16th.— Instead of being “strongly engaged in Speculations on the Principles,” instead of freeing themselves from Bondage, Mankind seem to have broken to Pieces the Feudal Bondage and demolished funding systems, only to bow their Necks to mere Popularity & Tyranny as terrible as either, it is the Tyranny of Hurricanes & Tornadoes, or the raging Waves of the Sea. All fredom of Thought, Speech Writing and Printing Shrinks and trembles before it, as if it were made up of Prætorian Bands or Turkish Janisaries.2
There may be a few Instances of Men who have examined the Theory of Government, with a liberal Spirit: but I really know not who they are— But certainly they have not been Attended to. Those who have taught for Doctrines the Commandments of Faction and the imperious Dogmas of Popularity are the only ones who have attracted the Public attention.
You may preserve my Letters, if you think them deserving any Notice and fity Years hence, compare them with the times.
I am my dear sir your / Affectionate Father
[signed] John Adams
RC (MHi:Seymour Coll.); internal address: “Charles Adams Esqr.”
1. In this letter and the next, JA quotes from and discusses James Kent, An Introductory Lecture to a Course of Law Lectures, Delivered November 17, 1794, N.Y., 1794, p. 3–5, Evans, No. 27183.
2. The Praetorian Guard was an elite army { 393 } founded in the second century B.C. to defend Roman generals, but it became the imperial guard under the emperor Augustus in 27 B.C. The guard was disbanded by the emperor Constantine in 312 A.D. Similarly, janissaries were the special forces that guarded the sultans of the Ottoman Empire from the fourteenth to the nineteenth century (Oxford Classical Dicy.; OED).

Docno: ADMS-04-10-02-0255

Author: Adams, John
Recipient: Adams, Charles
Date: 1795-02-14

John Adams to Charles Adams

[salute] Dear Charles

Our amiable Professor, in the 5th Page, informs us that “The free Commonwealth of the United States, which in all its ties, relations and dependencies, is animated with the pure Spirit of popular Representation, offers the highest Rewards to a Successfull cultivation of the Law, and the Utmost Encouragement to Genius.”—
I Scarcely have the Courage, my dear son, to write even to you, my candid, free and independent Thoughts upon this Passage. Would to God it were true in any reasonable Construction of the Words.!
Is it animated with the pure Spirit of Popular Representation? And what is the pure Spirit of popular Representation? I know of no other Answer which can be given to this last question than this vizt a Spirit in Elections, of Candour, Truth, Justice, and public Affection: in Contradistinction and opposition to all Partiality, falshood, party Spirit Intrigue or other Species of Corruption.
Is the Commonwealth of the U. S. animated with Such a pure Spirit? Recollect the first Election of P. and V. P.— There were no Bribes received or offered. But were there not Intrigues of an unwarrantable Nature, wholly inconsistent with the pure Spirit We have described! Recollect the Second Election of the same officers. Collect together the Newspapers, in all the States and see what a monstrous Mass of Lies you will have before you. Recollect the pure Spirit of Clintonian Cabal—of Virginia Artifice—of Kentucky Delusion—and then Say whether all this is pure Spirit. Examine and see whether you find, this pure Spirit, in the Elections of Senators of U. S.— I shall not descend into minute Details: But in general, my son enquire whether the Elections of senators are not too often determined by Party Spirit and even by Factious motives in the Legislatures of the states and whether there is not danger that Such an Evil will increase?
But I have a more serious Question still to ask, whether the pure Spirit of popular Representation, when Elections are so frequent of the Executives as well as of the Senate is consistent with Liberty? { 394 } The purest Spirit of popular Representation will forever elect Representatives of the Majority in Number— Education Property Honour will not be proportionally represented. Consequently Education Property and Honour will not be Secure.
Moreover if the pure Spirit of Popularity is to give the Ton to every Thing why are the P. & V.P. chosen by Electors instead of the People? Why are senators chosen by another Description of Electors and not by the People? The Answer is obvious the pure Spirit of Popularity is not always and in all Things to be trusted.
We are told, further that “The free Commonwealth of the U. S. offers the highest Rewards to a successful Cultivation of the Law and the Utmost Encouragement to Genius.”—
Whether this is true or not, and in what degree it is true, or otherwise deserves your serious Consideration. The purest Spirit of Popularity that We have in this Country is adulterated if not poisoned with ancient monkish Prejudices against the Profession and Professors of Law, which it is difficult to overcome. It deserves your Consideration whether the highest Rewards are given to the cultivation of the Law, or not. Whether they are not given too often to a Successful Cultivation of popular Prejudices? to an assiduous fomentation of contracted notions—to a party Spirit? and to vulgar sophistry. to an abuse of Words? read Mr Locks Chapter on the Abuse of Words and see if the Frauds and Knaveries there described do not too often decide the Spirit of popular Representation, and bestow the highest rewards.—1
I am afraid “the Encouragements to Genius” will as little bear Examination.— Genius with Integrity appears to be very little Encouraged— and Genius without Integrity, had better not be encouraged at all. Genius is too much encouraged to affect Popularity; to flatter the People; to excite Prejudices; to inflame Passions; to unite with Parties; to associate with Clubbs: but not enough to study and pursue the public Good, in the plain path of Virtue Honour and Knowledge.
Tell me Charles is this Croaking.? At all Events you must keep it to yourself and not expose yourself or your / Affectionate Father
[signed] John Adams2
RC (MHi:Seymour Coll.); internal address: “Charles Adams Esqr.”
1. John Locke, “Of the Abuse of Words,” An Essay Concerning Human Understanding, London, 1690, Book III, ch. 10.
2. JA also wrote to CA on 13 and 15 Feb. (both MHi:Seymour Coll.). In the earlier letter, JA { 395 } commented on New York’s gubernatorial election. The letter of 15 Feb. continued his commentary on James Kent’s lecture.

Docno: ADMS-04-10-02-0256

Author: Adams, John
Recipient: Adams, Abigail
Date: 1795-02-15

John Adams to Abigail Adams

[salute] My Dearest Friend

This is the coldest day We have felt this Winter, and if it were not for the hope I have of a Letter from you Tomorrow, I should freeze for what I know, to night. This Month has been all unpleasant Weather but none severe. You have had a North East storm I perceive which raised the Tides And I hope brought in a fresh and abundant supply of Seaweed.—
It is the dullest time We have seen this Winter No Arrivals no News from abroad, nor from any Part of our own Country. The Treaty appears not and when it will, no Man can tell. Are We to wait here till May for it? I wont. There is not the Smallest reason for my waiting. I can, in no possible Case have any Voice in its Ratification as two thirds of the Senators must agree. Nor will any opinion or Reasoning of mine have the smallest Weight with any one of the Senators. If I were disposed to wait how long must I wait.?
I am tired of reading and writing: My Eyes complain: I want Exercise: I must have my Horse: and I must be at home.
Charles writes me that Nabby has got the better of her unfortunate Accident and is out of all Danger— I rejoice and am thankful.—
We know not what to do with our Trunks & Flour & Porter &c &c There is no Vessell here for Boston. We must Store them and leave them with Some faithfull hand to be sent to Boston by the first Vessell.
You Say I must stay a few Days at New York— But I shall be uneasy and impatient— No Business, No Books, no Amusement, No Society much Suited to my Taste. Good Cheer is not enough for me. Balls Assemblies Hunting, are neither Business Pleasure nor Diversion for me—
What do you say shall I resign my Office when I am threescore, or will you come with me in a stage Waggon and lodge at a Tavern in fourth street?1
I must contrive something new against next Winter. The old Routine grows too insipid!
I shall never be weary of my old / Wife however—so declares your / Affectionate Husband
[signed] John Adams
{ 396 }
RC (Adams Papers); internal address: “Mrs A.”; endorsed: “Febry 15 1795”; notation: “Class Second / No 2308 / George M Minot.”
1. That is, at Francis’ Hotel, for which see Samuel A. Otis to JA, 16 Oct. 1794, and note 2, above.

Docno: ADMS-04-10-02-0257

Author: Adams, Charles
Recipient: Adams, Abigail
Date: 1795-02-17

Charles Adams to Abigail Adams

[salute] My dear Mother

I did not receive your last letter until after it had been written some considerable time2 The request that I should write to my Aunt Shaw I have most willingly complied with. I send the letter to you open that you may peruse it, and if necessary make any alterations you shall think proper.3
There is always such a spirit of kindness in your letters to me that I could wish for them more frequently there is something more endearing in a mothers love than in a fathers. There was one passage with which I was exceedingly affected and which I did not fail to show to the Lady concerned I beleive we are both convinced of the propriety of the sentiments contained in it With the greatest truth I can say that from my first acquaintance with her my affections have not varied nor do I conceive why they should for I have always found her uniform. I could say much more but I know that Lovers lectures are seldom interesting to a third person.
As you are a polititian an abridgment of our State transactions will no doubt be acceptable. This State has been and still is the dupe of The Southern States. Continually wrong headed She will not perceive that the interests of New England and her own are intimately connected. We have elected six antifederalists for the lower house in Congress for the next two years. Mr King is however again chosen for the Senate to the great Joy of The friends of order. Clinton and Van Cortlandt have resigned or rather declined serving again and it is very doubtful whether Mr Jay or Mr Yates will succeed as Governor4 I cannot say much respecting the honest conduct of either party. Chicane and stratagem are opposed to the same weapons. lie to lie abuse to abuse. Such is the picture of our elections. Yet the people pretend to be Republicans though their conduct is diametrically opposite to the pure principles of Republicanism whose basis is purity in elections. But words govern men and rarely principles.
I congratulate you on the happiness of my Sister She is very well.
I have been these two days past engaged in writing to my brothers { 397 } in Holland. As by the Spirit of the King of Great Britain it appears that that power has made a separate peace with France They will probably remain undisturbed in their situations May heaven protect them is the fervent prayer of your affectionate son
[signed] Charles Adams
RC (Adams Papers); addressed: “Mrs A Adams. / Quincy / near / Boston.” Filmed at [Feb. 1795].
1. The dating of this letter is based on JQA to CA, 17 May, below, in which JQA acknowledged the receipt of CA’s letter, dated 16 February.
2. Not found.
3. Not found.
4. Pierre Van Cortlandt (1721–1814) had served in both the New York militia and the New York provincial congress during the Revolution and became New York’s lieutenant governor in 1777. Like George Clinton, Van Cortlandt cited ill health as his reason for not seeking reelection in 1795 (DAB).

Docno: ADMS-04-10-02-0258

Author: Adams, Charles
Recipient: Adams, John
Date: 1795-02-17

Charles Adams to John Adams

[salute] My dear father

Delighted and instructed as I have been by your two letters containing the strictures upon Mr Kent’s Lectures I was sorry at the injunction to keep them perfectly to myself, more so perhaps because I consider myself under some obligations to communicate to the members of our Society whatever may fall under my observation which can tend to the instruction of man kind and to the advancement of the Science of Government. As I conceived myself restricted I have made no communication. Yet how lamentable is it that in this Country with all its boastings The rising generation those of them more especially who have imbibed at an early period good principles and independent sentiments should be debarred from receiving instruction from meritorious characters who have gone before them, that ingenuous minds should be deprived of a freedom of communication that when mutual candour is predominant the young should not dare to be instructed by those of more experience. I could not say too much of the amiability of Mr Kent. I should find but few to compare with him of his age in point of abilities Yet you must acknowledge that in an introductory lecture of that kind expressions may be used not exactly investigated. Words create disputes more contention has originated from a misunderstanding of terms than any thing else. However such is my opinion of our Professor that I beleive he would have no hesitation at making those corrections which might be suggested.
It has of late become to fashionable to call this The age of Reason { 398 } that even men who upon reflection do not perceive the wondrous wisdom of the times yet fall into the cant phraseology of the day.1
I see nothing in the conduct of our elections to warrant the assertion that they are pure There may be in some parts of The United States more purity than in others but we are certainly verging towards corruption as fast or faster than any Nation ever did. Already in this State we look in vain for that purity about which we hear so much declamation. On the other hand we see Chicane and corruption made use of in every election from the lowest to the highest offices. When we talk then of purity we speak of a thing no longer prevailing.
Mr Wilcox was so obliging as to take letters and some newspapers for my brothers he will sail today
Holland it appears was about making a separate Peace with France it is quite time that a stop should be put to the effusion of human blood. Yet I fear that rivers will yet flow in France before She will establish a good Government. What is to become [of] England is it possible She can pay the inter[est] of her enormous debt? and if She should fail [at] that will it not overset every thing?
When will the treaty with England be public I am very anxious to see it.
With affection I am your son
[signed] Charles Adams
RC (Adams Papers); addressed: “The Vice President of the United States / <Philadelphia> Quincy / Boston”; docketed by JA: “C. A to J. A. / 1795.” Some loss of text where the seal was removed.
1. In An Essay on the Nature and Immutability of Truth, Edinburgh, 1770, Scottish writer James Beattie first used the phrase “age of reason” to describe the Enlightenment (OED).

Docno: ADMS-04-10-02-0259

Author: Adams, Abigail
Recipient: Adams, John
Date: 1795-02-21

Abigail Adams to John Adams

[salute] my dearest Friend

I did not get my thursday Letters till fryday Eve when as you may well suppose I was greatly allarmd at the account You gave me of our dear daughter. I had written twice too her since her confinement, but had not received a line tho, I requested miss Peggy to write me whilst mrs Smith was unable.1 I Suppose the fear of allarming was the reason, and as it is ten days Since the date of yours and the Saturday post of this day brings me no letters I would fain hope that mrs Smith is on the recovery. I shall write however by the Monday post requesting an immediate answer—
{ 399 }
Dr Tufts calld upon me yesterday informing me that He came to Town in concequence of a Letter of mr Brights to him giving him the offer of his Farm—that he had been to converse with him upon the subject, that his Lowest Price was Seven Hundred and fifty pounds, to be paid down immediatly as he had in view making a purchase of an other Farm at a greater distance from Town.2 half the stock is included which is one yoke oxen one horse 4 cows 2 of them Brights. the oxen & horse are at the halfs— the whole amount of the Land is 100 Acers, 10 of salt Marsh 4 at the Farms good, Six at the neck poor—10 Acres wood Land chiefly cut of—8 acres pasture, 23 Mowing & Tillage 49 fresh Meddow & pasture. the price & Terms prevented the dr from giving him any answer, untill he received orders from you I have detaild facts— our Tennants upon the two places I hear from others, not from themselves think their Terms must be increased on account of the great price of the necessaries, particularly Grain and meat.—
I feel anxious that the Treaty Should arrive before the rising of Congress, but I begin to despair. the fire will in some measure be spent I hope. if it was a Treaty from Heaven pronouncing Peace on Earth & good will to Man—there would not be wanting a sufficient Number of Deamons to Nash their teeth, & rend it to peices if they can. Mr Jays mission was an unpleasent one and I fear he will be a sufferer for a while for the good he has done, and the Service he has renderd.
Parson Thacher in his Sermon on thanksgiving Day compared the French Revolution to a Volcano, which had not only overturnd the Government of that Kingdom Ravaging & destroying every thing near to its crater but by the voilence of its Eruption shaking all the Kingdoms arround, and the Lava of which came near to Scorching even the united States of America. he deliverd a very bold animated discourse for him.3 Many people from Town went to hear mr osgood. his text was in Psalms—“He hath not dealt so with any Nation”4 I am informd he took every part of the proclamation and commented upon it, and was not more mild with the Jacobins than before to them he asscribed and charged the late debt contracted in defence of the Laws— the Clergy in General exerted themselves as I am informd, with a truce sense of Liberty and in support of the Government there have been some exceptions taken I find that the President did not mention Gospel Priviledges, and call upon all denominations of Christians. one clergyman at a distance wrote to mr osgood to inquire if he really thought the President was a Christian? { 400 } The strict Churchmen here were hurt at thanksgiving being appointed upon their strict fasts. this they would not have regarded, if he had been a Dissenter but as a Churchman they could not reconcile it. I am sure the President did not mean to hurt the weak Bretheren of any denomination.
all Friends here desire to be rememberd to you.—
I know not whether I shall write again to you as it may not reach you.5 If I do I will direct it to N York to the care of col smith. I am my dearest Friend / most affectionatly Yours—
[signed] Abigail Adams—
P S I am going to take Tea with Mrs Hancock this afternoon by her particular invitation. on monday I return to Quincy—
RC (Adams Papers); endorsed: “Mrs A. Feb. 21. 1795.”
1. That is, Margaret Smith, sister of WSS, for whom see vol. 7:441.
2. Likely John Bright, a Boston upholsterer, whose wife, Mary, was the daughter of JA’s former neighbor Moses Adams (JA, D&A, 2:88; Sprague, Braintree Families; Thwing Catalogue, MHi).
3. Rev. Peter Thacher of Boston’s Brattle Square Church, for whom see vol. 5:481.
4. Psalms, 147:20. David Osgood’s sermon was published as A Discourse, Delivered February 19, 1795: The Day Set Apart by the President for a General Thanksgiving through the United States, Boston, 1795, Evans, No. 29246.
5. AA wrote this final letter to JA after his early departure from Philadelphia on 19 February. Their correspondence would not resume until 8 June, after JA returned to the capital to preside over a special session of the Senate called to debate the Jay Treaty (Annals of Congress, 3d Cong., 2d sess., p. 825, 828; 4th Cong., special sess., p. 853, 855).

Docno: ADMS-04-10-02-0260

Author: Adams, John
Recipient: Adams, John Quincy
Date: 1795-03-26

John Adams to John Quincy Adams

[salute] My dear Son

I have but lately received your kind Letter from Amsterdam of the 17th of November and another from the Hague much longer and of an earlier date.1 The last I have Sent to Mr Randolph to be laid before the President, as it contains ample and important Information. These are the only Letters I have as yet recd from you. Your Mother has received others. Your Letters both public and private, I have reason to think have given Satisfaction.
The Treaty arrived Since the Dissolution of Congress and Senate are Summoned to meet at Philadelphia on 8. of June, which will occasion me a Supernumerary fatiguing Journey.2 The last Session of Congress was so peaceable that I presume the Treaty will be ratified, tho I know not what it is.
The News I can give you are worth very little. The Rage of Speculation in Lands in the southern and Eastern States is as violent as { 401 } ever. The Prices of Things are very high. The Banks have Stopped discounting for some Months, in Boston which may check the disorder in some degree. Our Governors will be the Same this Year as last.
The State of Europe is Such, that Peace must be made, this Year or the next. What Terms the French will exact of England I cannot conceive. Surrender, and Restoration of all Conquests; Demolition of Portsmouth to revenge Dunkirk;3 Limitation of the Number of Line of Battle ships & Frigates for the future, have been suggested by Some French Republicans here. But these are too humiliating for Englishmen as yet.
Our Friends are all well. Mr Cranch and Miss Lucy are both to be married next Week.4
My Farm gallops like a gay hobby Horse— My Eyes are worse this Spring than ever; So bad that I can Scarcely see what I write to you.
Any new Publications of real Merit, I shall thank you to send me.
Will not the flight of Mr Van Staphorst, injure our Money Interests somewhat? American Bankers, any more than American Consuls or Ministers or Agents of any sort, should not be Party Men, in Holland.
The American General you mention, is intitled to Attention and Respect from you as far as Justice claims: but I have particular Reasons for hinting, that, by what I have heard of his Conduct in America during & after the late War, although he is a Stranger to me, your Confidence Should be reserved with discretion.5
Collect yourself, my Dear son: Be always upon your Guard.— If your Father was not always so, he has dearly earned by Experience, the Right of advising you. No Character in human Life requires more Discretion, Caution, and Reserve, than that of a Public Minister in a foreign Country.
Make my Compliments acceptable, if you can, wherever I was known. You Say nothing of Mr Luzac Dr Maclane &c &c.6
May God bless and prosper you and your manly Companion My dear Thomas from whom We have recd Letters as charming as your own, and that is Compliment enough.
I am my Dear son, with a tender Affection your / Father
[signed] John Adams
RC (Adams Papers); internal address: “J. Q. Adams Esqr / Minister at The Hague.”; endorsed by TBA: “The Vice President / 26 March 1795 / 23 June Recd / 2 July Answd.” Tr (Adams Papers).
{ 402 }
1. For JQA’s letters to JA of 9 and 17 Nov. 1794, see JQA to AA, 11 Nov., and note 8, above.
2. A special session of the Senate was held between 8 and 26 June 1795 (Biog. Dir. Cong.). JA and AA departed Quincy on 26 May and stopped in New York where AA remained with AA2, while JA continued to Philadelphia, arriving on 6 June.
3. In the 1763 Treaty of Paris ending the Seven Years’ War, the French were forced to remove their fortifications, which the British considered a threat, from Dunkerque. The French considered the overall terms of the treaty a “disgraceful peace” as it marked the end of much of their empire and the acceptance of British naval superiority (Cambridge Modern Hist., 6:345–347).
4. On 4 April 1795 Lucy Cranch married John Greenleaf (1763–1848), the son of Mary Brown and former Suffolk Co. sheriff William Greenleaf. Although blind since youth, Greenleaf was a proficient musician. The couple had seven children and lived in the Cranch homestead at Quincy (Greenleaf, Greenleaf Family, p. 91, 217, 223–224; Frederick A. Whitney, “A Church of the First Congregational (Unitarian) Society in Quincy, Mass., Built in 1732,” NEHGR, 18:125–126 [April 1864]).
William Cranch married John’s youngest sister, Anna Greenleaf (1772–1843), on 6 April. The couple settled in Washington, D.C., and had thirteen children (Greenleaf, Greenleaf Family, p. 222–223).
5. In his 17 Nov. 1794 letter to JA (Adams Papers), JQA wrote of the arrest of Gen. John Skey Eustace, for whom see vol. 7:333, by the Dutch government. JQA expressed his hesitancy at involving himself in the situation as Eustace had served in the French Army, but he concluded, “He is however as a Citizen of the United States, entitled to every proper exertion on my part, for securing to him the privileges of our neutrality, as far as he has not personally forfeited his right to them.”
JA’s opinion of John Skey Eustace likely stemmed from his eccentric behavior during and after the American Revolution; his unsuccessful petition to Congress for back pay, which was made after he resigned his army commission; and his subsequent military service in the French Revolution (Washington, Papers, Presidential Series, 3:67–68; JCC, 17:462).
6. While living at The Hague in 1782, JA attended the services of Rev. Archibald MacLaine, who was the pastor of the English Church (JA, Papers, 12:248).

Docno: ADMS-04-10-02-0261

Author: Shaw, Elizabeth Smith
Recipient: Adams, Abigail
Recipient: Cranch, Mary Smith
Date: 1795-04-04

Elizabeth Smith Shaw to
Abigail Adams and Mary Smith Cranch

[salute] My dear Sisters—

I believe in one of my Letters I told you I had troubles of various kinds— I need to be possessed of more wisdom than the Serpent, joined to the innocence of the Dove, more meekness than Moses, more patience than Job—& to abound richly in the fruits of the Spirit— In one word our people have been very Jealous of me, they were conscious they had not used Mr Shaw well, & thought it imposible for me, to be possessed of so great a share of Phylanthropy as not to inform Mr Abbot how much they are in the arrears, & so prejudice his mind as to make him unwilling to stay— In the true spirit of Chivalry they made windmills, for there own foolish passions to contend with, & vexed themselves with their own vain imaginations, & suspicions— Some were for removing Mr Abbot, & thought it very imprudent, & impolitick to place him with me— Nat B—— was so passionate as to tear up the paper which was { 403 } subscribed in order to get me some wood—& to carry the mony back—1 But thanks to a kind providence we had some cool heads, & good hearts among us, who took care to stiffle the flame in its beginings, & told them they knew me too well, to believe a word prejudicial to me— But notwithstanding this, I found the report produced some baneful effects, & was the cause of my not having it brought in season, & by that means lost the Opportunity of its being cut & brought by those who did not subscribe mony— However I believe I had about 5 Cords, I have been obliged to keep three fires, I have not wantd a stick, though it has been some care for me, but that is a triffle— Through the great kindness of my Friends, I have been enabled to pay for every article I have had— a sense of their favours & my own unworthyness quite overwhelms me, & I think sometimes I shed as many tears, as if they did not shew so much affection— strange creatures we are— I often long for your counsel, & direction— I say, what would my dear precious Sisters advise to—& if anything rational is suggested to my mind, I embrace it as their opinion— This little foolish matter among the People troubled very much— Some said I should not live here after the 12th of March— but they acknowledged to me it was the language of passion, & were very sorry afterwards— Indeed I did not know what method was proper to take— I was too proud to go after any person to tell them it was false— But Mr A. did me a great kindness without knowing it, to this moment— They enquired of him respecting me, & he frankly told them I said everything I ought to induce him to stay— I hope the method I took to convince them of their mistake, will meet with your approbation, which was by writing to the Committee— I send a Copy of it, & when you have read it please to return it—2 Some of the Committee waited upon me, immediately, & desired I would give myself no further uneasiness, for the report was quelled at once, & would do me no injury—in there minds they should have said— But when I consider it was owing to the great love, they have for Mr Abbot, I suppose I ought to forgive them— excessive Love often creates jealousies—especially where there is a consciousness of demerit on one side—
They are now quite restless, & uneasy because Mr Abbot does not catch at the bait, in a moment—they wonder what he can deliberate for— Whenever he can feel, as if he could chearfully accept he will not keep them in suspense one moment— It is as dissagreeable for him, as for the people— Mr Denny of Newbury is to preach here tomorrow, & I suppose Mr Merill will be here the next Sabbath, & { 404 } read his answer—if not in the affirmative— they are a reined parish, for the present, at lest—3 Not long since I received a letter from Mr Cranch, he says he shall be with us in April— He comes on the wings of Love, & will I suppose speed time away, that may bring him to the arms of his lovely Nancy—
May all gracious heaven shower down its richest blessings, & make my Nephews, & Neices as happy as they are deserving— They will all come, & make me a visit— I have room enough— I should be glad when he comes, to know by the Post when he will be here—
Excuse everything, I must go, & wait upon the good young minister, Mr Denae who was ordained at Newbury, over Mr Murrys Society, & has exchanged with Mr AA—4
Betsy Quincy has received her Gown I hope, do for her, I pray you, what you think is proper, for her body, but especially for her Soul— My Love to my dear Brother Cranch, & Brother Adams, & to all who enquire after / Your Sister
[signed] Elizabeth Shaw
1. Possibly Nathan BlodgettBlodget, son of Judge Samuel BlodgettBlodget of Haverhill (vol. 6:405).
2. Enclosure not found.
3. Rev. Daniel Dana (1771–1859), Dartmouth 1788, became the pastor of Newburyport’s First Presbyterian Church on 19 Nov. 1794. Gyles Merrill (1739–1801), Harvard 1759, was the pastor at the First Congregational Church of Plaistow, N.H. (Joshua Coffin, A Sketch of the History of Newbury, Newburyport, and West Newbury, from 1635–1845, Boston, 1845, p. 372; Weis, Colonial Clergy of N.E.).
The parish perhaps became “reined” after their fears proved unfounded that Elizabeth Smith Shaw might retaliate for the poor treatment of Rev. John Shaw by attemtpting to dissuade Rev. Abiel Abbot from accepting the congregation’s offer.
4. The Irish-born Rev. John Murray (1742–1793), University of Edinburgh 1761, had preceded Reverend Dana as pastor of the First Presbyterian Church at Newburyport (Weis, Colonial Clergy of N.E.). For Abiel Abbot, see Elizabeth Smith Shaw to AA, 24 Jan. 1795, and note 6, above.

Docno: ADMS-04-10-02-0262

Author: Adams, Thomas Boylston
Recipient: Cranch, William
Date: 1795-04-08

Thomas Boylston Adams to William Cranch

[salute] Dear William

A favorable occasion presents itself of dropping you a few lines by a vessel for Georgtown. It is the first direct opportunity that has offered since I have been in this Country. Indeed since the Conquest of it, by the french, external intercourse has been till very lately, altogether interrupted. You may easily conjecture that our residence here has not abounded with scenes of pleasure or amusement. A state of war is always unfavorable to both. The variety of incident however has been great, and the period of the last six months has been peculiarly eventfull in this corner of the Globe. In the north, { 405 } under the immediate influence of the Constellation, not improperly termed the Great She Bear of the Russians—we have witnessed the dismemberment of an heretofore powerful Empire; a completion of the partition of its territory, and the irrevocable subjection of its inhabitants. Even the poor title of nominal independence is deprived it.1 In this quarter we have seen the Conquest of a Country not less distinguished heretofore among the powers of Europe, but its Conquerors were men. Savage & brutal barbarity, has therefore neither marked their approach, nor characterized their residence among the people subdued. A conduct at once generous & just seems to be the peculiar attribute of a french army. Instead of promoting the intestine divisions of this people, they have uniformly restrained both public and private acts of hostility between the different partizans— They have ameliorated the condition of the subdued faction, and protected obnoxious individuals not only from violence, but even from insult. In short the french army have litterally given peace to this Country in its Conquest, and their presence is still necessary to maintain the tranquility. The two great factions which divide this people unite but in one sentiment, that of plotting the absolute ruin of each other; even the doctrine of Liberty, Equality & Fraternity, has brought them no nearer to a coincidence of design, than the opposite one that prevailed before.
Times of public adversity, should not be chosen to form an opinion of the character of a people; such has been the period of my residence here. Credulity, which is a child of weakness & terror, is one of the characteristic foibles I have remarked, as particularly operative upon the mind in this Country.
Reports & stories, are circulated to cheer the despondence of a def