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Browsing: Adams Family Correspondence, Volume 4


Docno: ADMS-04-04-02-0099

Author: Adams, Abigail
Recipient: Adams, John
Date: 1781-05-28

Abigail Adams to John Adams

[salute] My Dearest Friend

I could not have conceived that a Letter written upon merely political subjects could have communicated so much pleasure to my Bosom as yours of the 28th of December to the president, of Congress, has given to mine.
This Letter was taken by the Enemy, carried into New York, and published by them, and republished [by]1 Edes.2 For what reason the Enemy published it I cannot tell, as it contains nothing which can possibly [injure]3 us or the writer. It has proved a cordial to my anxious Heart for by it I find you were then living, and in Amsterdam, two facts that I have not received under your own hand for 8 months. This Letter is 3 months later than any which has reachd me.
Dr. Dexter by whom I have before written, has since, been polite enough to visit me, that he might, as he expresses it, have the pleasure to tell you, that he had seen me, and take from me any verbal message, that I would not chuse to write, but my pen must be the faithfull confident of my Heart. I could not say to a stranger, that which I could not write, nor dare I even trust to my pen the fullness of my Heart. You must measure it, by the contents of your own when softned by recollection.
Dr. Dexter appears to be a sensible well bred Gentleman, and will give you much information respecting our state affairs which may not be so prudent to commit to paper. I have written to the House of de Neufvilla for a few articles by an other opportunity and have now inclosed a duplicate.
I intreat you my dearest Friend to forward Letters to the various ports in France as you have some acquaintance with many of them. I should then be able to hear oftner.
Our Friends from P[lymout]h have made me a visit upon their remove to Neponset Hill which they have purchased of Mr. Broom. You will congratulate me I know upon my acquisition in the Neighbourhood, it is a very agreable circumstance. By them I learnt that the late vessels from France had brought them Letters from their Son up to the 10 of March, in which he mentions being with my dear Friend, my Sons, and Mr. T[haxte]r. They have received five Letters, by different vessels yet not a line has yet blest my hand. May I soon be made happy, and the Number compensate for the delay.
{ 142 }
I hope you do not think it necessary to continue in Holland through the summer. I am very anxious for your Health—so flat a country will never agree with you. Pray do not be negligent with regard to an article which so nearly concerns the happiness of Your Ever affectionate
[signed] Portia
RC (Adams Papers); addressed: “To Honble. john Adams Esqr Amsterdam”; docketed by CFA: “Portia May 28. 1781.” Enclosed “duplicate” order on the firm of de Neufville is missing, but a text of it is printed as an enclosure in AA to JA, 25 May, above.
1. Editorially supplied for a word missing in MS.
2. The original of JA to Pres. Samuel Huntington, 28 Dec. 1780, was captured at sea and published in the New York Mercury extraordinary of 19 April 1781, from which it was reprinted in Edes & Sons' Boston Gazette, 28 May, p. 2, col. 3–p. 3, col. 1. A duplicate is in PCC, No. 84, II; printed in Wharton, ed., Dipl. Corr. Amer. Rev., 4:213.
3. Editorially supplied for a word missing in MS.
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/