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Browsing: Papers of John Adams, Volume 8

Docno: ADMS-06-08-02-0100

Author: Adams, John
Recipient: Roberdeau, Daniel
Date: 1779-09-10

To Daniel Roberdeau

[salute] My dear Friend

I have not the less Affection for you, not the less pleasing Remembrance of the social Hours at York Town, for not having written since my Departure. Whatever may be thought of it, I have been very busy, and about such Objects and in such scaenes, as left me no Heart to write, except upon necessary Business. If you have ever suspected that I have not thought of you often enough, you have no greater Complaint against me than my Wife and Children, and as I have been so happy as to make this matter up with them, I dont despair of succeeding with you. How does Mrs. Clymer and Miss Betsy, your son and Daughters.1 These I suppose are grown beyond my Knowledge. I am sure my own Children are in a manner. I shall see them all I hope some time or other. But whether I do or not I wish them all the Prosperity, that you can reasonably desire for them. My affectionate Respects to them all.
But above all I wish you Joy of your happy Marriage, since I left you and desire you would present my best Respects to Mrs. Roberdeau.2
These pleasing Family scaenes make me forget, the turbulent political ones in which, We have both been tossed. I think however that the worst is past, and this is a Consolation for all.
As you Speak French, so well, you will of Course have much Conversation with the Chevalier de La Luzerne and Mr. Marbois. I should be obliged to you, if you will present my Compliments to them. If I am not much deceived you will find them worthy of their Places, and of particular Respect. They will neither propagate Irreligion nor Immorality, nor Corruption, nor Servility nor bad Policy—unless they should be changed.
{ 140 }

[salute] I am with great Esteem and Respect, sir your Frd & most obedient sert

1. On the Roberdeau family, see Adams Family Correspondence, 2:352–353.
2. Roberdeau, whose first wife died in the winter of 1777, had married Jane Milligan on 2 Dec. 1778 (DAB).

Docno: ADMS-06-08-02-0101

Author: Adams, John
Recipient: Rush, Benjamin
Date: 1779-09-10

To Benjamin Rush

[salute] My dear Friend

I am indebted to you, for more Letters than I can repay at present. But declaring myself a Bankrupt, You must except of a few shillings in the Pound. Indeed I suspect the Debt is greater than I know of. I saw in the Courier de L'Europe, Part of a Letter from you to Dr. Dubourg,1 which was intercepted, in which you refer him to me for a long Letter you wrote me upon our military affairs &c. But this Letter nor any other from you never reached me in France.2
I was sensibly afflicted at this Loss, for there are no Letters, I prize more than yours, because none are to me more instructive, and in Europe I was terribly tormented for Want of Information from this Country.
How goes on your Government? When I arrived I found the Massachusetts, in Sober Earnest, endeavouring at last to frame a Constitution. The People have done themselves Honour in chosing a great Number of the most respectable Men, into the Convention, and there has been hitherto great Harmony among them. My native Town of Braintree did me the Honour to choose me, into this society of Worthies, upon my first Arrival, and although I foresee I shall have a laborious Piece of Business of it; yet I am much pleased with the Opportunity of having a share in this great Work. Yet it is impossible for Us to acquire any Honour, as so many fine Examples have been so recently set Us; altho We shall deserve some degree of Disgrace if We fall much short of them. It will not be easy to please this People: But I hope We shall succeed—if We do not, I dont know what will be the Consequence.
We must send to Europe, or to the other states for what I know for a set of Legislators. My best Respects to your agreable Family, and all our Friends in Philadelphia, and believe me your Frid & sert.
1. For Jacques Barbeu Dubourg, who was well known to Franklin and had been a correspondent of Rush, see Benjamin Rush, Letters, 1:77, note 1. Rush's { 141 } letter to Dubourg was dated 10 Nov. 1778 and appeared in the Courier de l'Europe of 23 March 1779. The letter to JA that Rush mentioned to Dubourg was almost certainly that of 27 Oct. 1778 (above), which dealt largely with military affairs.
2. “Nor any other from you” and “in France” are interlined.
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.