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Browsing: Adams Family Correspondence, Volume 2


Docno: ADMS-04-02-02-0168

Author: Smith, Isaac Sr.
Recipient: Adams, John
Date: 1777-04-25

Isaac Smith Sr. to John Adams

[salute] [Mr. Adam]s

The bearer is Thomas Russell Esq., who is going to The Congress in order to make Application in behalf of the Town of Charlestown for some temperal releif for the many sufferers amongst which are many widows, more so than in general, and iff any thing could be done for them, under there present dificulties, consistant with the general good I should be glad and hope some method might be found Out for that purpose.
We have two Ships in the bay, and will rain Triumpant As there seems no probabillity of Opozeing them.1—By the Ticonderoga post Yesterday itt seems there were but about Two thousand people and the lake Open for the enemy to come Over. I Am A little affraid they will come Over too soon for us.—We have wrote the Marine board how far we have proceeded in the business Appointed us, but we find itt to be a confused business, some part of itt, att least. However hope to get itt Accomplishd as spedily as we can.
There is a ship built att Piscataque, belonging to Mercer & Co. of { 223 } Phila. which has taken Out of a fleet Three Vessells and was in persute of more, which ship's keyl was not laid, when [ . . . ]2 round here.—We have had some very bad carryings on here lately which cant be justifyed by any person that has any regard to the present cause or either to humanity or justice. One of which of the persons referred to is [Mr.?] Perkins that had a son who had run him in debt and borrowed money unbeknown to his father and behaved badly, run of to NY. some time Ago, and on no Other crime Alledged Against the father who knew nothing of his going. To be seized when seting down to breakfast and ludgd.3 into a Cart with his wife and Children hanging round him, not knowing but he was a going to the Gallows, must be shocking to any One that has the sparks of humanity in them. Nothing more inhumane could have been in Spain or Portugal, to be banesht without even the shadow of an Accuation.4 I dont know but you think I am pleading the cause of the Torey party, but I abhor a real One and such management has a tendancy to make more of that kind of people. Were any person as the case here, have given bonds With good security for there good behavior, and have never offended, the goverment they are under (for there Own honor) Ought to protect them, or else goverment had as good be att an end.
The Counsel sent a Messuage to the house and people were in hopes some good would have come of itt, but beleive itt will all come to nothing.—Yr. &c.
1. These were British frigates. See James Warren to JA, 27 April, for more details (Warren-Adams Letters, 1:318–319||; also printed in Papers of John Adams||).
2. MS torn by seal; two or three words missing.
3. Thus in MS, for “lugged”?
4. Thus in MS. This must have been James Perkins; see AA to JA, 20 April, above.

Docno: ADMS-04-02-02-0169

Author: Adams, John
Recipient: Adams, Abigail
Date: 1777-04-26

John Adams to Abigail Adams

I have been lately more remiss, than usual in Writing to you. There has been a great Dearth of News. Nothing from England, nothing from France, Spain, or any other Part of Europe, nothing from the West Indies. Nothing from Howe, and his Banditti, nothing from General Washington.
There are various Conjectures that Lord How is dead, sick, or gone to England, as the Proclamations run in the Name of Will. Howe only, and nobody from New York can tell any Thing of his Lordship.
{ 224 }
I am wearied out, with Expectations that the Massachusetts Troops would have arrived, e'er now, at Head Quarters.—Do our People intend to leave the Continent in the Lurch? Do they mean to submit? or what Fatality attends them? With the noblest Prize in View, that ever Mortals contended for, and with the fairest Prospect of obtaining it upon easy Terms, The People of the Massachusetts Bay, are dead.
Does our State intend to send only half, or a third of their Quota? Do they wish to see another, crippled, disastrous and disgracefull Campaign for Want of an Army?—I am more sick and more ashamed of my own Countrymen, than ever I was before. The Spleen, the Vapours, the Dismals, the Horrors, seem to have seized our whole State.
More Wrath than Terror, has seized me. I am very mad. The gloomy Cowardice of the Times, is intollerable in N. England.
Indeed I feel not a little out of Humour, from Indisposition of Body. You know, I cannot pass a Spring, or fall, without an ill Turn—and I have had one these four or five Weeks—a Cold, as usual. Warm Weather, and a little Exercise, with a little Medicine, I suppose will cure me as usual. I am not confined, but moap about and drudge as usual, like a Gally Slave. I am a Fool if ever there was one to be such a Slave. I wont be much longer. I will be more free, in some World or other.
Is it not intollerable, that the opening Spring, which I should enjoy with my Wife and Children upon my little Farm, should pass away, and laugh at me, for labouring, Day after Day, and Month after Month, in a Conclave, Where neither Taste, nor Fancy, nor Reason, nor Passion, nor Appetite can be gratified?
Posterity! You will never know, how much it cost the present Generation, to preserve your Freedom! I hope you will make a good Use of it. If you do not, I shall repent in Heaven, that I ever took half the Pains to preserve it.
Cite web page as: Founding Families: Digital Editions of the Papers of the Winthrops and the Adamses, ed.C. James Taylor. Boston: Massachusetts Historical Society, 2014.
http://www.masshist.org/apde2/