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Browsing: Adams Family Correspondence, Volume 10

Docno: ADMS-04-10-02-0234

Author: Adams, Abigail
Recipient: Adams, John
DateRange: 1795-01-29 - 1795-01-31

Abigail Adams to John Adams

[salute] my dearest Friend

I yesterday received your Several Letters inclosing those from Thomas—I do most sincerely rejoice in the safety and welfare, of our sons I hope I am not unmindfull of the repeated favours of Providence towards my Family, in Protecting and preserving them both by Sea & Land May the same gracious Providence continue to Gaurd them, and to make them usefull in the various Stations in which they may be called to act.
I had heard by a vessel which arrived at Marblehead, that there was a Letter from mr Dickinson, mentioning that the two mr Adam’s’s dinned with him on some day in october.2 the [cap]tain says he read in a Gazzet, the Treaty between great Britain, & America Signd sometime in Nov’br but by some accident he came away without the papers— if so important a matter is expected to come before Congress daily, I cannot urge you against your duty. I understand { 362 } that this Captain reports, that a vessel saild several days before him with dispatches from mr Jay—
you will see that the News Boy did not escape a comment from me. Honestus’s Father3 meeting mr Storer in the street, stopd him and askd him, if he had seen the Centinal of the Day, to which he replied Yes. well have you read that infamous Poetry, that Libel upon the Goveneur? Yes. well is not shamefull that our Printers should publish such rascally Scandelous stuff. Russel coppied it from the Hartford Paper. no Matter replies the old Man. he ought to be punished for Printing such a vile thing. pray mr Austin have not other Printers taken greater Latitude? upon which the old Gentleman walkd off— Such measure as they meet to others they cannot bear to have measured to them. Jarvis rules the House of Representitives. mr Dexters Friends have not exerted themselves as they ought. Varnum is said to be a shallow Man, a great prater. the Antis have exerted themselves for him, merely to revenge themselves for mr Ames Election
the third trial, there will be more exertion on both sides—4
we last night had a very pentifull southerly Rain which carried of all the Ice & what little Snow there was, but we have not had it upon a level, one inch deep. when ever our people could Sled stones, they have applied themselves to those in the common and have only got down the first wall. it employ joy and Shaw more than a week to Sled down the manure from joys place. he had 8 load of Summer manure. we shall be very dilligent, or rather as much So as I can prevail upon them to be. Elisha shaw want no Stimulous. he is all mrs Hobart described him.5 mr White her Father died this week very suddenly. he mounted his Horse & rode a few steps & fell of Dead.6
I have purchased three Tons of Hay. Captain Baxter from the Neck brought me a Tax Bill of a Hundred & 50 dollors for the last year.7 I told him I could not pay it till March. he was very desirious to have a part of it to prevent an execution being leveld by the State treasurer against him; so I told him I would pay him Your proportion of the State tax.
Remember me kindly to all inquiring Friend’s—and be assured of the Sincere affection of / Your
[signed] A Adams—
RC (Adams Papers); addressed by Louisa Catharine Smith: “The Vice President of the / United States. / Philadelphia.”; endorsed: “Mrs A. Jan. / Ansd Feb. 10. 1795.” Filmed at Jan. 1795. Some loss of text where the seal was removed.
{ 363 }
1. The dating of this letter is based on the death of Joseph White, for which see note 6, below.
2. For Thomas Dickason, see TBA to AA, 20 Oct. 1794, and note 3, above.
3. That is, the Boston merchant Benjamin Austin Sr. (1717–1806) (Thwing Catalogue, MHi).
4. AA refers to the layered process of local elections whereby each of the fourteen Massachusetts districts held elections until a majority result was determined. The third round of the congressional elections, which had begun the previous November, would be held on 23 March (Mass., Acts and Laws, 1794–1795, p. 60–65; Boston Federal Orrery, 23 March 1795).
5. Thankful White Adams, widow of JA’s brother Elihu, had married Col. Aaron Hobart in 1777 (NEHGR, 31:250 [April 1877]; Sprague, Braintree Families).
6. Lt. Joseph White (1706–1795), a local surveyor, tithingman, selectman, and warden, died on 28 Jan. (Sprague, Braintree Families).
7. Capt. Daniel Baxter (1758–1836) of Hough’s Neck, Quincy, son of Daniel and Prudence Baxter, was appointed tax collector in 1790 (same; Joseph Nickerson Baxter, Memorial of the Baxter Family, Boston, 1879, p. 25–26).

Docno: ADMS-04-10-02-0235

Author: Adams, John
Recipient: Adams, Abigail
Date: 1795-01-29

John Adams to Abigail Adams

[salute] My Dearest Friend

The public Prints, announce the Death of my old esteemed Friend General Roberdeau, whose Virtues in heart Searching Times endeared him to Philadelphia and to his Country. His friendly Attention to me, when Congress held their Sessions at York Town, I can never forget, and excites a more lively Interest in his Loss than that of some others who have lately gone before him.1
Mr King is re-elected by the Legislature of New York by a majority of five in the House and two in the senate, in opposition to Mr Tillotson, whom you know, to have married a Sister of Chancellor Livingstone.2 This is a great Point gain’d.
Mr Jay, Chancellor Livingstone, Mr Burr, Mr Yates and Mr Hamilton, are mentioned as Successors to Gov. Clinton who has resigned— Mr Jay, if he should not return, will not run very fast. Mr Hamilton it is Said will not serve. Chancellor will stand no Chance as I hear, and it is doubted whether Burr or Yates will prevail.3
We are Still at Uncertainties whether Mr Jay or Despatches from him will arrive before the 4th of March, which makes me Still dubious whether it will be right for me to go away. I am most earnestly and ardently desirous of it but Will it do?
Mrs Washington is very happy at present in a Visit from her two Granddaughters, Nelly’s sisters as I suppose they are—4 one of them is a fine blooming, rosy Girl, who I dare Say has had more Liberty and Exercise than Nelly.
I dined Yesterday at Mr Morris’s whose Hospitality is always prescious. a Company of venerable Old Rakes of Us three score Years { 364 } of Age, or a little over or a little Under Sat smoaking segars, drinking burgundy & Maderira & talking Politicks till almost Eleven O Clock— This will do once in a great While: not often for me—
In senate We have no Feelings this session— All is cool— No Passions. No Animation in Debate. I never Sat in any public Assembly, so serenely. What Storm may be preparing I know not.— a great Calm at sea & an uncommonly fine day at Land is called a Weather breeder— But if Jays Despatches dont Arrive We shall have no Tempestuous Weather this session.
I wish you a pleasant Thanksgiving though I fear I shall not be with you according to my Wishes.
Instead of an additional Snow, and a return of cold as I hoped this morning We have now a warm and plentiful Rain, which is melting the Snow and Spoiling the Slaying. I hope you have more Snow, more Steady cold, good Sledding and a Solid Mill Pond.
The Post to day, brought me no Letter. I dont always very Sanguinely look for a Letter on Thursdays. I Should be inconsolable on a disappointment a Monday.5
RC (Adams Papers); endorsed: “Janry 29 1795.”
1. For Gen. Daniel Roberdeau, a former member of the Continental Congress and Philadelphia businessman, see vol. 2:350, 352–353. Notice of Roberdeau’s death, in Winchester, Va., on 5 Jan., first appeared in the Philadelphia newspapers on 28 Jan. (Aurora General Advertiser; American Daily Advertiser).
2. During New York’s congressional elections of 1794–1795, the Federalists retained both seats in the Senate with the narrow reelection of the incumbent Rufus King. His opponent was Dr. Thomas Tillotson (1750–1832), a Maryland native who had settled in New York after the Revolution. Tillotson served in the state assembly from 1788 to 1790 and then the state senate from 1791 to 1799. His wife was Margaret Livingston (1749–1823), the sister of Robert R. Livingston (Biog. Dir. Cong.; Thomas Streatfeild Clarkson, A Biographical History of Clermont, or Livingston Manor, Clermont, N.Y., 1869, p. 256; Young, Democratic Republicans, p. 425).
3. On 22 Jan. 1795 Gov. George Clinton announced his decision not to seek a seventh term as governor, citing ill health. Robert Yates (1738–1801), chief justice of the New York Supreme Court, was one of the many candidates to emerge during the 1795 gubernatorial race. A patriot and lawyer, Yates had served on the state court since 1777 and been appointed chief justice in 1790. His Antifederal leanings had tempered enough by 1789 for him to unsuccessfully stand as a Federalist candidate for governor. Six years later, Yates was again courted by some Federalist supporters before firmly aligning himself with the Republican cause. He won his party’s caucus to become the Republican candidate, but he lost the election to the Federalist John Jay (DAB;Young, Democratic Republicans, p. 430–434).
4. Martha Washington’s two eldest granddaughters were Elizabeth Parke Custis (1776–1832) and Martha Parke Custis (Washington, Papers, Presidential Series, 1:4–5).
5. JA emphasized this last paragraph by writing it in large script.
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.