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Browsing: Papers of John Adams, Volume 6

Docno: ADMS-06-06-02-0244

Author: Adams, John
Recipient: Cushing, Thomas
Date: 1778-07-25

To Thomas Cushing

[salute] Dear sir

I had this Day the Pleasure of your Letter by Captain Barnes, of June 9.1 I did myself the Honour, when in Boston to call at your House, but was told you was ill and could not be seen, upon which I sent in my Name, as the Fashion is, intending to call at another opportunity, but was dissappointed.
I had a very disagreable Passage, to this Country, passing through many Dangers, from the Wrath of Neptune and Boreas, as well as from that of Bellona and her Britons;2 But had at last sufficient Cause for Gratitude to a Power superiour to them all, in a safe Arrival, in good Health, and in the Midst of good News.
I thank you sir for the Newspaper, you incased to me, containing the Resolutions of Congress, upon the British Bills, Resolutions, which have been highly esteemed and applauded in Europe, as has also their Address to the People, and their prompt and polite Ratification of the Treaty.
As to News sir, altho there has been no formal Manifesto published as yet, either by the Court of Versailles or London, yet the two Nations are at actual War, and the King of France has given orders to all his ships of War, to attack the English at sea, whenever they are found.
We are in hourly Expectation of important News from America. The Count D'Estang must have arrived long ago—and he must have been, probably thirty days before Admiral Biron. Was Lord Howes Force sufficient to make a stand, at New York, or else where against D'Estang, untill Birons Arrival? In short We expect Something very good or very ugly from America, but I am not so sanguine as you know I have been sometimes, which it will be.
I cant bear the Histories I read of the impudent Excursions from Philadelphia and Rhode Island, burning Vessells and Houses. Will America suffer such a Race of Tormentors so contemptible as they are at present in Comparaison of what they have been, to plague her much longer?
I am grieved to the Heart at the Diversity of Sentiment, con• { 316 } cerning our Constitution: but I have <one> a Consolation, in knowing that Disputes in our state are not usually carried to that Pitch of Heat, Rancour and Extravagance, that sometimes happens in other Places, and I therefore hope, that Harmony and Unanimity will in Time take Place.

[salute] Be so good as to make my Compliments acceptable to all our old Friends, and believe me to be with much Respect, sir your most obedient, humble servant

P.S. The Abby Reynel3 is writing an History of this Revolution, and is very desirous of obtaining authentic Documents. Can you help him to any?
1. Cushing congratulated JA on his arrival in France and the success of the Commissioners in negotiating the treaties with France (Adams Papers, not printed here).
2. Boreas, Greek god of the north wind; Bellona, Roman goddess of war.
3. Guillaume Thomas François, Abbé Raynal (1713–1796), philosophe and author of the widely read and reprinted Histoire philosophique et politique des établissements et du commerce des Européens dans les deux Indes, Amsterdam, 1770, had apparently begun the preparation of his Révolution de l'Amérique, 1781 (Hoefer, Nouv. biog. générale). JA sent a Dutch translation of that work, Stattsomwenteling van Amerika, Uit net Fransch, Amsterdam, 1781, to AA in a letter of 9 Oct. 1781 (Adams Family Correspondence, 4:224–225, and note 4).

Docno: ADMS-06-06-02-0245

Author: Adams, John
Recipient: Lee, Richard Henry
Date: 1778-07-25

This is a summary of a document and does not contain a transcription. If it is available elsewhere in this digital edition, a page number link will be provided below in the paragraph beginning "Printed."

To Richard Henry Lee

Passy, 25 July 1778. printed:JA, Diary and Autobiography, 4:171–172. In this letter, the last copied from Adams' Letterbooks into his Autobiography for the period of the first mission, he thanked Lee for his letter of 13 May (above), described his voyage to France, and commented on the European political situation which he saw as unfavorable to Great Britain. Adams also mentioned French enthusiasm for the American cause—he had “never seen a French Tory”—the problems caused by the lack of funds, and his difficulties with the French language. Finally, he assured Lee that Beaumarchais' accounts would be closely examined.

Docno: ADMS-06-06-02-0246

Author: MacCreery, William
Recipient: Adams, John
Date: 1778-07-25

From William MacCreery

[salute] Dear Sir

Your favor of 10th. Instant did not reach me 'till this moment. I thank you kindly for your good wishes, and for the whole contents of it.
{ 317 }
There are three Vessels arrived here this Week from America two from Baltimore and one from Boston. Each have brought Letters &c. for each of our Honorable Plenipotentiaries all which have been deliverd to the Agent1 here. My latest Letters from Baltimore are of the 7th. Ultimo and inform me that the Artillery, Baggage, Sick and Wounded of the Enemy had been Shipp'd at Philadelphia and the Ships departed. It was also reported and beleived that they were Shipping the Artillery and Baggage at New York. They were in hopes that the whole of the Enemy wou'd immediatly bid Adeiu to the Continent. Chesapeak Bay had been clear from the middle of May to the middle of June. Their Force no doubt was collected to one point, and has had'ere this a severe trial. The E[nglish] Commissioners had arrived at Rhode Island, perhaps it was in consequence of their arrival that the Troops were leaving N. York.
I hear today on Change that two E[nglish] Cutters are at the mouth of this River. The Saratoga will go out in a few Days, and I think will be able to give a good account of any one of them. She Mounts 12 four Pounders, and is the completest Vessel [for] her Size for fighting I have ever seen.
I lately had the pleasure of a Letter from Isaac Smith Esqr. at Boston, in consequence of my Letters to you while in America.2 You have no doubt recommended me to him, for which I pray you to accept my thanks. The purport of it is to be acquainted of the terms &c. of the Insurance Office at Bordeaux, on which head have Wrote him fully.
The Post being just ready to depart obliges me to curtail this Letter, as I had some things to mention to you, but must like Parson Chase postpone them to subsequent [opportunity?]. Mean time, beg leave to assure you that I am with all possible Respect Dear Sir Your very Obt Servt.
[signed] Will M.Creery3
RC (Adams Papers); addressed: “The Honorable John Adams at Passi near Paris”; stamped: “NANTES”; docketed in unknown hands: “McCreery. 1778”; “July 25th.” Tears in the MS have resulted in the partial loss of some words which are supplied in brackets.
1. That is, J. D. Schweighauser.
2. Probably a reference to MacCreery's letter of 10 Oct. 1777 and its addition dated the 25th (above).
3. MacCreery wrote again on 27 July (Adams Papers), enclosing some Baltimore newspapers of 6 June that he had received in the meantime and noting the imminent sailing of Capt. Whipple with a large number of merchant ships, two of which were MacCreery's.
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.