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Browsing: Diary of John Quincy Adams, Volume 1


Docno: ADMS-03-01-02-0007-0010-0018

Author: Adams, John Quincy
Date: 1785-08-18

18th.

In the morning I went to pay a visit to Mr. Platt,1 and found my old friend Brush there. He introduced me to Mr. Broome, for { 307 } whom I had Letters from his son in law Mr. Jarvis. He immediately went up with me to our lodgings and I introduced Mr. de Chaumont to him. He insisted upon our going, both of us and staying at his house while we remain here. I was in great hopes of seeing Mrs. Jarvis,2 but she was at Huntington, and is not expected home under a month. Miss Betsey Broome is here, but is not at all sociable. In this she does not resemble her father, who is a sincere, open-hearted good man. He lives in a most agreeable Situation: his house is upon an eminence just opposite the harbour, so that the tides come up, within ten rods of it. Mr. Platt lives near him in the same position. Broome, Platt, and Brush have been partners in trade, but have now dissolv'd their connection. We dined at Mr. Broome's. After dinner we were going to see a cave, a few miles out of town, famous for having been the shelter of two of the regicides,3 in the time of Charles the 2d. but a violent thunder shower arose, and prevented us. It did not last more than half an hour; but for that time the wind blew like an hurricane, the rain shower'd down, and there were several of as heavy peals of thunder as I ever remember to have heard: we saw the lightning fall, into the water, about 20 rods from us. After it was over we went and drank tea with Mrs. Platt. Mr. Chaumont lodg'd at Mr. Broomes, and I at Mr. Platt's house.
1. Jeremiah Platt, a New York merchant, was the business partner and brother-in-law of Samuel Broome, mentioned below, who had moved to New Haven in 1775 (Frederic Gregory Mather, The Refugees of 1776 from Long Island to Connecticut, Albany, 1913, p. 664, 680; Donald Lines Jacobus, Families of Ancient New Haven, 8 vols, in 3, Baltimore, 1974, 2:344–345).
2. Amelia Broome Jarvis, daughter of Samuel Broome and wife of James Jarvis of New York (Jacobus, Families of Ancient New Haven, 2:344–345).
3. William Goffe and his father-in-law, Edward Whalley, had been military leaders in the English Civil War and had signed the death warrant of Charles I. With the return of the monarchy a decade later, both men refused to surrender and were exempted from pardon. They fled England for Boston, and in 1661 went to New Haven, where they camped out in a cave that summer. The pair settled in Hadley, Mass., three years later (Isabel MacBeath Calder, The New Haven Colony, New Haven, 1934, p. 221–226).

Docno: ADMS-03-01-02-0007-0010-0019

Author: Adams, John Quincy
Date: 1785-08-19

19th.

This morning I went with Mr. Brush, and delivered the Letters I had for this place. Mr. Chancey1 for whom Coll. Humphreys gave me a Letter went with me, to Dr. Stiles2 the President of the College; who is a curious character. Mr. Jefferson once told, me, he thought him an uncommon instance of the { 308 } deepest learning without a spark of genius. He was very polite to me, and shew me, the Library, and the apparatus of the College: he has a few natural curiosities; but nothing very extraordinary. We dined at Mr. Platt's, and afterwards went to see Coll. Wadsworth, who arrived in town this day; and leaves it to-morrow morning for Hartford. Mr. Chaumont and myself afterwards went to the Ball. There has been for these last two months a dancing master here and has given a ball once a fort'night. He had not a very large number of scholars, and there were more ladies than gentlemen. The master of the school does not appear to be a good dancer himself; and do not think his pupils in general have made any great progress for the time they have been learning: there were a few very genteel young Ladies; a great many appear to have been favoured by nature, but not by the graces. At about 11. o'clock, Mr. Chaumont and myself retired, as we intend to leave this place early in the morning.
1. Undoubtedly Charles Chauncy, New Haven lawyer, town officer, and representative in the legislature, who later served on the superior court (The Literary Diary of Ezra Stiles, D.D., LL.D. President of Yale College, ed. Franklin Bowditch Dexter, 3 vols., N.Y., 1901, 2:407; 3:107, 111, 351, 354).
2. Ezra Stiles, president of Yale, 1778–1795 (Edmund S. Morgan, The Gentle Puritan: A Life of Ezra Stiles, 1727–1795, New Haven, 1962). JQA presented to Stiles letters of introduction from JA and David Humphreys at this time (LbC, Adams Papers; Literary Diary of Ezra Stiles . . ., ed. Dexter, 3:177).
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/