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Browsing: Diary of John Quincy Adams, Volume 2

Docno: ADMS-03-02-02-0003-0002-0002

Author: Adams, John Quincy
Date: 1788-02-02


I dined with Walker at Mr. Thaxter's. My brother's both dined at Mr. White's. In the afternoon, we rode again in sleighs upon the river as far as we went yesterday. We had a number of songs, somewhat in the Collegiate stile; but in order to be exemplary return'd home quite early in the evening. Mr. Thaxter lives very agreeably, and has retracted his theory with respect to matrimony: and indeed I believe our sex are not less prone than the other to profess a System, which in fact, we wholly disbelieve.
Mrs. Shaw shew me a letter which she has been writing to Walker; and I am in hopes it may have a good effect upon him. If he has any sensibility, or any principles remaining he must be affected by it.
I had with Mr. Shaw some conversation upon the subject of { 356 } the disorders which happened at College, in the course of the last quarter: his fears for my brothers are greater than mine: I am perswaded that Charles did not deserve the suspicions which were raised against him: and I have great hopes that his future conduct, will convince the governors of the University, that he was innocent.1
1. On 29 Nov., after Thanksgiving dinner, a number of students engaged in a disturbance in the college dining hall in which they broke windows and furniture. All students who could not prove that they had left the hall were charged for the damages. Several students, including CA, who served as waiters in the dining hall were especially singled out for not giving evidence against their fellow students concerning the disorder and were dismissed from their jobs (MH-Ar: Faculty Records, 5:278–279).

Docno: ADMS-03-02-02-0003-0002-0003

Author: Adams, John Quincy
Date: 1788-02-03


I attended meeting twice this day. Mr. Shaw as usual had company in the evening. I conversed with Madam. Charles and Tom went out in the evening.

Docno: ADMS-03-02-02-0003-0002-0004

Author: Adams, John Quincy
Date: 1788-02-04


This morning between seven and eight o'clock my brothers set out to return to Braintree and from thence to Cambridge, as the vacation closes next Wednesday. In the forenoon I went down to see Leonard White, who was not at home. I met him however in the street with Mr. McHard, to whose house we went and sat an hour. I dined at Mr. Shaw's, and at about 4 was on my horse. I got home by dark: though the roads were much worse, than when we went to Haverhill. I found my old Lady, had some company, but they soon went away. I pass'd all the evening at home, quite in low spirits as indeed I have been for a week or ten days past. Not even dissipation has been able to support me. My nerves have got into a disagreeable trim, and I fear I shall be obliged to pay still less attention to books than I have of late. And if that be the case I am sure I must be very ignorant, when I leave the title of a student. It seems very unfortunate that there should be no medium that a man must be a fool or an invalid.

Docno: ADMS-03-02-02-0003-0002-0005

Author: Adams, John Quincy
Date: 1788-02-05


The weather this day has been extreme cold: I have not experienced the severity of the Season, so much since the winter I pass'd in Sweeden. I pass'd the evening with Townsend and { 357 } Amory at Dr. Smith's. The old man is very fond of telling long stories, and indeed it is quite necessary to attend to him. There are however two young ladies in the house, to whom we attend with much more pleasure. Miss Smith may be 20 years old; She is not handsome; but has a great degree of animation in her eye, and as the want of it appears conspicuous in every other feature the mixture of opposites has a singular effect upon her countenance. Her person is not elegant, nor is her taste in dress such as suits my mind: she has a satyrical turn, and is fond of being esteemed witty. So much I think I can judge from the short acquaintance I have with her. Perhaps at some future period I may be able to say more. Miss Putnam I will mention the next time I fall in company with her.
We play'd at whist about a couple of hours; after which we sung; or attempted to sing; for of all the company Amory, was the only one that could sing so as to give any kind of entertainment.
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, 2018.