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Browsing: Diary of John Quincy Adams, Volume 2


Docno: ADMS-03-02-02-0002-0002-0020

Author: Adams, John Quincy
Date: 1787-02-20

20th.

Was part of the afternoon at Bridge's chamber. Had tea at Little's. Charles and Cranch, pass'd the evening at Mr. Hilliard's. I was with Mr. Andrews at White's chamber.
William Amherst Barron1 of Petersham was 18. the 10th. of January. By the death of his father, which happened since he entered the university, he has been involved in some difficulties, and has been able to spend but a small portion of his Time here. Notwithstanding these disadvantages he is said to be a good scholar, and his disposition is amiable. Since I came, he has been present only one quarter, so that my personal acquaintance with him is not intimate. He intends studying Law.
{ 164 }
1. Barron returned to Harvard from 1793 to 1800 as mathematics tutor; thereafter, he entered the U.S. Army, where he was acting professor of mathematics at West Point, 1802–1807, and then served in the department of the quartermaster general until 1821 (Sidney Willard, Memories of Youth and Manhood, 2 vols., Cambridge, 1855, 1:275–276; George W. Cullum, Biographical Register of the Officers and Graduates of the U.S. Military Academy, at West Point, N.Y., From Its Establishment, March 16, 1802, to the Army Re-Organization of 1866–67, 2 vols., N.Y., 1868, 1:78).

Docno: ADMS-03-02-02-0002-0002-0021

Author: Adams, John Quincy
Date: 1787-02-21

21st.

Mr. Williams gave us a public lecture this afternoon, containing, an account of the different constellations in the Heavens. We had at Little's chamber a meeting of the ΦBK. Mr. Andrews read a dissertation, containing a panegyric, upon the Ladies. A Letter from the branch of the Society at New-Haven was read,1 containing some queries respecting the granting a charter to Dartmouth, and an account of their transactions, upon a certain affair. After the letter was read a committee of 3,2 was appointed to answer it. The meeting was then adjourned to Monday March 5th. I pass'd a couple of hours with Freeman.
1. Not found, but dated 2 Jan. and referred to in Harvard's reply of 8 March.
2. Henry Ware, JQA, and James Bridge.

Docno: ADMS-03-02-02-0002-0002-0022

Author: Adams, John Quincy
Date: 1787-02-22

22d.

Very cold weather. We drank tea at Williams's. Bridge, and I went and pass'd the evening at Judge Dana's; he himself is attending the court at Boston. We found Mr. Read and Mr. Burr there, and endeavoured as much as possible to behave like gentlemen. After we returned to college, I got engaged in conversation with Bridge, so deeply, at his chamber, that it was near 1 in the morning, before I left him.

Docno: ADMS-03-02-02-0002-0002-0023

Author: Adams, John Quincy
Date: 1787-02-23

23d.

About one half the Class are here at present: they have been coming in, quite slowly; and they will be chiefly here, I suppose, before the end of the Quarter. Yesterday afternoon, I met with Mr. Ware, and Bridge, upon the subject of the letter to New Haven; we thought it would be best for each of us to write, and to select from the three. Accordingly I wrote this evening.1 I made tea this evening, and at the same time quitted the club, for a number of substantial reasons.
{ 165 }
1. JQA's draft letter has not been found. The letter sent to New Haven was dated 8 March and is printed in the Catalogue of the Harvard Chapter of Phi Beta Kappa..., Cambridge, 1912, p. 111–113. The RC at Yale indicates that it went out in Ware's hand and over his signature, as senior officer of the Harvard chapter. Yet, as JQA reports in the next entry, it was he, not Ware, who decided which of three letters was sent to Yale; thus he undoubtedly shaped the reply.
The committee's letter presented the case for granting the charter to Dartmouth. Because the William and Mary chapter was so distant and “by this unavoidable delay a number of worthy characters now at Dartmouth College would be deprived of the benefit resulting from the institution,'' the Harvard chapter deemed it advisable to draw up a charter, provided such a move received Yale's approbation. Yale agreed, and the charter was signed on 21 June at Cambridge. Two months later it received Yale's ratification (Catalogue of the Harvard Chapter, p. 114–115).
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/