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Browsing: Papers of John Adams, Volume 3

Docno: ADMS-06-03-02-0087

Author: Adams, John
Recipient: Tudor, William
Date: 1775-10-01

To William Tudor

[salute] Dr Sir

I have at last the Pleasure to mention to you what I Suppose Mr. H.1 has informed you of, before, vizt that the Pay of the Judge Advocate is raised to fifty dollars per Month for himself and his Clerk, and this is to be allowed from the day he entered upon the service.
There was an Expression in your Representation to the General which alarmed me much, and put me to some Pain lest it should excite a Disgust.2 It was this “The Congress as I have been informed were wholly unacquainted with the Duties of a Judge Advocate, especially in the continental Army.” If this had been true, yet it was indecent to tell them of it, because they ought to be presumed to know { 176 } all the Duties of this officer, but most especially in their own Army. The Construction that I put upon it, was that the Congress had never been made Acquainted with the orders of the General to the Judge to attend every general Court Martial, which made the Duty in the American Army, essentially greater than in any other. By this Interpretation, satisfaction seemed to be given and by the favourable Representation of the General, together with the friendly Notice of General Gates and some Members who had been at the Camp, this Matter was at last well understood, and Justice was done.
I am, very Sorry to learn, that you have been sick, but rejoice to hear you are better. I have this Morning received from my dear Mrs. Adams, two letters which have put all my Philosophy to the Proof.3 Never Since I had a Family was it in such Distress, altho it has often seen melancholly Scenes. I tremble for fear my Wifes Health should receive an irreparable Injury from the Anxieties, and Fatigues, which I know she will expose herself to, for the relief of her Family in their present Sick Condition. I fear too the Contagion of such an Hospital of an House. Whether to return I know not. We expect every Hour, momentous Intelligence from England, and from Schuyler and from Washington. And altho, my Presence here is not of any great Consequence, yet some of my Constituents may possibly think it of more than it is, and be uneasy, if I should be absent. At least, if I am here, and any thing goes differently from my Wishes, I shall have the Satisfaction to reflect that I have done all I could, however little it might be. Yet if I Stay here, I shall not be happy, till I know more from Braintree. Perhaps I may receive another Letter in a day or two. My Respects to your Father and Mother, and all Friends. Pray write me if you are well enough. I am, sir, your Friend,
[signed] John Adams
RC (MHi:Tudor Papers); addressed: “To William Tudor Esqr. Judge Advocate in the American Army Cambridge favd by Major Bayard”; docketed: “Octr. 1st. 1775.”
1. Benjamin Harrison.
2. Tudor's memorial of 23 Aug. was enclosure No. 1 in Washington's letter to the President of the Continental Congress, and can be found in PCC, No. 152, I, f. 99–101. JA's quotation is not exact, but the meaning is unchanged.
3. Those of 8–10 and [17] Sept. describing the family's illness and the deaths of several others (Adams Family Correspondence, 1:276–280).

Docno: ADMS-06-03-02-0088

Author: Adams, John
Recipient: Warren, James
Date: 1775-10-01

To James Warren

[salute] Dear sir

This Morning I received your kind Favours of the 11th. and 19th. Ultimo—with the Enclosures. Drapers Paper is a great Curiosity and you will oblige me by Sending it as often as posible.1
{ 177 }
The Foreign News you mention, is all a Delusion my Friend. You may depend upon it, every Measure is preparing by the Ministry to destroy Us if they can, and that a Sottish Nation is Supporting them.
Heaven helps those who help themselves, and I am happy to find a Disposition so <happily> rapidly growing in America to exert itself.
The Letters, by your Packett from my Family, have given me Serious Concern indeed. I am much at a Loss what Course to take. I have thoughts of returning home. I fear, my dear Mrs. Adams's Health will sink under the Burthen of Care that is upon her. I might well enough be Spared from this Place, where my Presence is of no Consequence, and my Family might derive some Advantage from my being there, and I might have an opportunity of attending a Conference between a Committee of this Congress and the Council of Mass. Where perhaps I might be of more service than I can here. However I am not determined. My Friend, your secretary2 is very much averse to my going. I dont know what to do.
The Committee who are going to the Camp, are Dr. Franklin Mr. Lynch and Coll. Harrison, who I hope will be received with Friendship and Politeness—by all our Friends.
I assure you, sir, there is a serious Spirit here—Such a Spirit as I have not known before.
The Committee by whom this Letter will go, are determined Americans. I fear that two of them, I mean Mr. L. and H. may have received Some unfavourable Impressions from Misrepresentations, concerning our Province, but these will be easily removed, by what they will see, and hear I hope. I wish that every Civility may be Shewn them, which their Fortunes, Characters and Stations demand.
Our news from England, is, Troops from England Scotland, Ireland, and Hanover3—Poor old Britania! I am, your Friend,
[signed] John Adams
RC (MHi:Warren-Adams Coll.); addressed: “Coll Warren”; docketed: “Mr: J: Adams. Lettr. Octr. 1. 1775.”
1. None of the enclosures except the letters from AA has been found. Draper's paper would be a copy of the Massachusetts Gazette.
2. Samuel Adams.
3. Great Britain had decided to send some 20,000 troops to America by the spring of 1776 and to do so it was trying to hire mercenaries (Merrill Jensen, The Founding of a Nation, N.Y., 1968, p. 646).
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.