A website from the Massachusetts Historical Society; founded 1791.

Browsing: Papers of John Adams, Volume 15

Docno: ADMS-06-15-02-0226

Author: Stockdale, John
Recipient: Adams, John
Date: 1784-01-20

From John Stockdale

[salute] Sir

(domestic News)
I have received by the packet some Medals inclosed in a Letter directed for You for which I paid 16/8 & shall not open it til I receive Your instructions1
I this day received a Basket sealed up & directed for You, as I suspected it was some sort of Game I resolved in the presence of Dr. John Jebb to commit an act of felony & break the Seals, with an intent for Dr. Jebb to seal it up again with his seal, should it prove to be any thing else,— but as it appear’d to be two fine Hares unaccompanyed with any Letter, I took the liberty to offer one to Dr Jebb in Your name which he very politely refused, desiring me at the same time to remember him to You in the Strongest terms, I am now left in the distrest situation of being oblig’d to eat (with the { 466 } assistance of my little family) both the Hares we shall do ourselves the pleasure after dinner of Drinking, Yours, Your Sons. & familys Good Health in a glass of fine old Madeira, which I had from a friend.—2
(Political News)
Mr. Wm. Pitt rises every day higher in the estimation of the People & no doubt will be minister many Years, this night four of Mr. Fox’s friends in the House of Commons got up & begd. for a Coalition of Parties, which in fact is nothing less than Mr. Fox’s coming on his Knees to Mr Pitt, but you may rely upon it that Mr Pitt will never Join Lord North.—3
A very full Court at the Queens Birth Day Yesterday the Portuguese Ambassador was over turn’d in St. James’s St. in his Carriage but not hurt, but a Gentlemans Servt. who was near had both his legs broke by the accident.—
I am Sir Your much obligd / & very Humble Servant
[signed] J. Stockdale
RC (Adams Papers); addressed: “His Excy. John Adams Esqr. / Minister Plenipotentiary from / the United States of America / to the United Provinces of the / Low Countries / Hague”; endorsed: “Mr Stockdale / Jan. 20. ansd 31. 1784.”
1. For the medals, see Jean George Holtzhey’s letter of 5 Dec. 1783, above.
2. For the hares, see John Cranch’s letter of 17 Jan. 1784, above, and JA’s reply to Cranch of 31 Jan., below.
3. Stockdale presumably refers to the Commons debate on 20 Jan. over “Rumours of a Union of Parties.” Parliament was in the midst of a constitutional crisis. William Pitt had taken office on 19 Dec. 1783 because of the India Bill’s defeat in the House of Lords despite having been approved by the House of Commons. The defeat, and thus Pitt’s replacement of the Fox-North coalition, was principally owing to the disclosure of George III’s opposition to the bill. But even after Pitt formed his ministry the faction in Parliament allied to Charles James Fox retained a majority. Thus the Pitt ministry was charged with being the creature of George III, the product of the unconstitutional use of his prerogatives. This resulted on 16 Jan. 1784 in the Commons resolving, by a margin of 205 to 184, “that the appointments of his Majesty’s present ministers were accompanied by circumstances new and extraordinary, and such as do not conciliate or engage the confidence of this House; the continuance of the present ministers in trusts of the highest importance and responsibility, is contrary to constitutional principles, and injurious to the interests of his Majesty and his people.” During the debate on 20 Jan., the substance of which was that there would be no coalition, Fox stated very clearly the fundamental issue that divided him and his party from Pitt: “One set of men think that the opinion of the House of Commons ought not to guide the sovereign in the choice of ministers who may have the confidence of the people; while the other set of men think that no ministry can or ought to stand, but on the confidence and support of the House of Commons. The one party stand upon prerogative, the other upon responsibility and the constitution” (Cannon, Fox-North Coalition, p. 145, 147; Parliamentary Hist., 24:360–392). See also JA’s 14 Dec. 1783 letter to the president of Congress, and note 4, above.

Docno: ADMS-06-15-02-0227

Author: Adams, John
Recipient: Franklin, Benjamin
Date: 1784-01-24

To Benjamin Franklin

[salute] Sir

Desirous of doing all in my Power, to Save Mr Morriss Bills, I determined to go to Amsterdam, and accordingly, Sett off, the Beginning of this Month from London, in a Season too rigorous for Pleasure.— At Harwich we were obliged to wait Several Days for fair Weather, which when it arrived brought us little Comfort as it was very cold And the Wind exactly against Us. The Packetts were obliged to put to Sea and I embarked in one of them. We were more than Three Days in advancing Thirty three Leagues with, So unsteady a Course, and Such a tossing Vessell that We could not keep a fire, the Weather very cold and the Passengers all very Seasick. As We could not, on Account of the great Quantities of Ice upon the Coast, reach Helvoet, We were put on Shore on the Island of Goree, where We got a Boors Wagon1 to carry our Baggage and We walked about Six Miles to the Town of Goree. not finding Iceboats here We were obliged to go in open Boors Waggons across the Island to Middle Harness. Here We were detained Several Days in very bad Lodgings unable to find Boats to carry Us over the Arm of the Sea to Helvoet. at Length Iceboats appeared, and We embarked amidst a Waste of Ice which passed in and out evey day with the Tide, and by the Force of Oars, & Boathooks Sometimes rowing, in the Water, and sometimes dragging on the Ice, which would now & then break & let us down, in the Course of the Day We got over, and thought ourselves lucky, as the last Boat which passed got stuck in the Ice and was carried out with the tide and brought in again, So that they were out from 9 in the Morning to one O Clock the next night before they reached the opposite Shore. We could not reach Helvoet, but landed on the Dyke about two Miles from it, and took Boors Waggons again for the Brille, which We reached at Night. Next Morning We took Ice Boats again to cross another Water obstructed with Ice as before, and then a Third the Maese, which We found Sufficiently frozen to walk over on the Ice. another Boors Waggon carried Us to Delft, and from thence a Coach to the Hague. after the Rest of a day or two I went to Amsterdam.2 Our Bankers had applied to the Regency, and I offered to enter into any reasonable Contract, and to pledge the Faith of the United States for the Performance of it. but all in vain, The Gentlemen of the Regency, Seemed very desirous of doing something for Us, if they { 468 } could. But as usual, they are so afraid of making a Precedent, and that other Powers, as much distressed for money as We, would take Advantage and demand the Same favour, that they dare not, and our Bankers were advised to take back their Application, to avoid a certain decision against Us.— Yesterday I returnd to the Hague.
I Should look back with <Pleasure, upon the> less Chagrin, upon the disagreable Passage from London, if We had Succeeded, in obtaining the Object of it, but I find I am here only to be a Witness that American Credit in this Republick is dead, never to rise again, at least untill the United States Shall all agree upon Some Plan of Revenue, and make it certain that Interest and Principal will be paid. There has Scarcely an Obligation been Sold Since the News of the Mutiny of Soldiers in Philadelphia and the diversity of Sentiments among the States about the Plan of Impost.
I have no Information from Congress or Mr Morris, but am told by our Bankers there are Bills to the Amount of Thirteen hundred Thousand Guilders which must be sent back, a terrible disappointment to great Numbers of People! Some of the Bills become payable, the Beginning of March, and the Rest being much the greatest Part in May.
At Amsterdam I recd the Honour of yours of the 3 of this Month.
LbC (Adams Papers); internal address: “Dr Franklin.”; APM Reel 107.
1. Farm wagon.
2. JA left London on 2 Jan., landed on the island of Goeree on the 8th, reached The Hague on the 11th, and went to Amsterdam on the 14th. The account given here should be compared with that JA compiled in 1812 and published in the Boston Patriot, JA, D&A, 3:152–153, and JQA’s contemporary account in his letters to Peter Jay Munro of 13 and 16 Jan. 1784, NNMus. The Gazette d’Amsterdam of 16 Jan. included a report from The Hague dated two days earlier relating that JA had returned from Paris and London and appeared before the States General to announce that he was again in residence at The Hague. Benjamin Franklin likely first learned of JA’s arrival from C. W. F. Dumas’ letter of 15 Jan., which indicated that JA had reached The Hague and gone to Amsterdam (DLC:Franklin Papers).

Docno: ADMS-06-15-02-0228

Author: Adams, John
Recipient: Ridley, Matthew
Date: 1784-01-25

To Matthew Ridley

[salute] Dear Sir

I recd, last Week, at Amsterdam, your Favour of Decr. 27. and Sympathize, most Sincerely with you, in your Affliction but I Still hope, Mrs Ridley will recover.
As an Article in our Confederation, Stipulates, that “no State Shall confer any Title of Nobility” and as the Genius of our { 469 } Governments is averse to all Such Distinctions, I am no Friend to the Errand of Major L’Enfant.1 I wonder, what the Roman, in Heaven, thinks, of the Use We are making of his Name and his Plough! I wonder, whence our Officers derived their Authority, to assume Such Honnours, and to institute Such decorations, without Leave of Congress or the States. if Congress had ordered a Medal to be Struck, and presented to every officer, no Objection would have been made: but the present mode, will, I fear give rise to very disagreable Debates and Dissentions. I have been informed that this whole Scheme, was first concerted, in France and transmitted, from thence, by the Marquis? Is this true or not? It is with Congress and the States to determine, whether it Shall be permitted. to me, it Seems an Inroad upon our Liberties. I dare Say the officers do not consider it, in that Light.2
To my mortification I must inform you, that I despair of doing any Thing to prevent the Bills from going back. I have made a painful Journey to Holland, in Packet Boats, Iceboats and Boors Waggons, in a very Severe Season to do all I could, but I find nothing can be done. I made a Journey last Summer in extream Heat, and another this Winter in extream Cold, both to no Purpose. The Heat cost me a Fever, and the Cold has hurt, my Health, but the greatest Chagrin of all is to find that I wear out, the feeble Remains of me, for nothing. I have but one comforable Reflection, which is, that when the States find their Credit compleatly and certainly undone, they will take effectual Measures to recover it, by establishing a Revenue for the Payment of Interest.
Remember me, respectfully and affectionately to Mrs Barclay, Mrs Ridley and the Children.
How is the Drs Complaint of the Stone, Gravel &c
LbC (Adams Papers); internal address: “Mathew Ridley Esq.”; APM Reel 107.
1. The relevant passage in Art. 6, paragraph 1, of the Articles of Confederation reads “nor shall the united states in congress assembled, or any of them, grant any title of nobility.”
2. This is the only extant letter by JA to anyone at Paris in which he criticizes the Society of the Cincinnati, but he was apparently equally unreserved in expressing his opinion of the society in conversations with acquaintances at Amsterdam. For the result of his comments, see the Marquis de Lafayette’s letter of 8 March in which he defended the society against JA’s criticism, Lafayette, Papers, 5:201–203.

Docno: ADMS-06-15-02-0229

Author: Adams, John
Recipient: Staphorst, Nicolaas & Jacob van (business)
Recipient: Willink, Wilhem & Jan (business)
Recipient: La Lande & Fynje, de (business)
Date: 1784-01-29

To Wilhem & Jan Willink, Nicolaas & Jacob van Staphorst, and De la Lande & Fynje

[salute] Gentlemen

when I left Amsterdam, I despaired of doing any Thing to prevent the Bills of Exchange from being Sent back.— It is possible however that Something may have Since happened, to give Us better hopes.— I should be obliged to you, if you would inform me, whether there is yet any Ground to expect any Aid from the venerable Regency of your City, or not. The Commerce of the City is much interested in it: and the City has a Right to do what it will with its own: and therefore no other Power can take Advantage of the Precedent, Since We are not demanding a Right, but requesting a Favour. Surely if the City Sees, that without hurting itself, it can confer a Favour on a Friend, and thereby greatly promote it’s own Commerce, it has a Right to do it, without fearing that other Powers differently circumstanced should claim a like Indulgence.
Since my Return to the Hague, I have reflected as maturely as I can, upon the Proposition of a new Loan, on a different Plan, Suggested in one of your Letters to me in London. It would be with great Reluctance, that I should consent to raise the Interest, but yet I would do it, rather than the Bills should go back.— I therefore request of you Gentlemen to consider of this matter, and consult with the Undertakers, and if you can be Sure of obtaining the Cash to Save the Bills, by a new Plan, I would agree to it. But yet, I could not, I think go beyond Six Per Cent including your Commissions, the two Per Cent to the Undertakers and in short including Interest and all Charges.1
It is neither your Fault nor mine, if We cannot Succeed, yet I should wish to do every Thing in our Power, and I request your Sentiments upon the Subject.— It would be imprudent to talk of a new Plan if We were not previously certain of Success in obtaining the Money.
I have the Honour to be, with Esteem / Gentlemen your most obedient and / most humble servant
LbC (Adams Papers); internal address: “Messrs W. & J. Willink / Nich: & Jacob Van Staphorst / & / De la Lande & Fynje”; APM Reel 107.
1. For the proposed new loan, see the consortium’s letter of 23 Dec. 1783, above. In fact, with the regency’s refusal to become involved, the consortium was apparently already hard at work laying the groundwork for a new loan, for which see their reply of 31 Jan. 1784, below.

Docno: ADMS-06-15-02-0230

Author: Adams, John
Recipient: Heyman, Herman
Date: 1784-01-30

To Herman Heyman

[salute] Sir

I have received the Letter you did me the Honour to write me on the 17. of this Month.
I wish Sincerely well to your Plans of Connection with America, but as they are of a private Nature I have no more Authority to give you Advice or Assistance, than any private Citizen.
I cannot give you any Encouragement, that Congress or the State of Maryland, or any other of the United States, will give you any publick Aid.— The Country is all open to the Enterprizing who, if they can find their Interest in Emigration have full Scope to exert their Skill, Talents & Industry: But the publick will be cautious of interfering.
I would not, on the one hand, discourage your Attempt nor on the other inspire you will false hopes. Your Plan is vast, and the Expence must be very great, So that if you Should not meet with Success the Disappointment might be Serious.— Wood it is true is plenty, but Labour is very dear. There have been Several Attempts to introduce the Manufactory of Glass into America. One at Braintree near Boston, my native Place,1 and one or more, at Philadelphia. These Succeeded to a certain degree, but I believe never made any great Fortune.
If your Friend Mr John Fried. Amelong goes to Maryland I would recommend him to the Civilities of his Excellency the Governor of that State, and any of the Members of their Legislature, and any of the Members of Congress now Sitting at Anapolis. Any of these Personages would have the Goodness to give thier Advice to Mr Amelong, and he may take this Letter with him if you please, as an Introduction. But he must not from thence expect any publick Assistance.2
With great Esteem and Respect &c
LbC (Adams Papers); internal address: “Mr Herman Heyman / at Bremen.”; APM Reel 107.
1. JA was well aware of the glassworks that had operated in the Germantown section of Braintree because it had been operated by his own brother-in-law Richard Cranch and Cranch’s brother-in-law Joseph Palmer (AFC, 1:18).
2. There are no extant letters by JA recommending John Frederick Amelung to anyone in Maryland, so it is likely that he carried this letter as an introduction (from Herman Heyman, 17 Jan, and note 2, above).

Docno: ADMS-06-15-02-0231

Author: Reed, Joseph
Recipient: Adams, John
Date: 1784-01-30

From Joseph Reed

[salute] Sir

Considerations purely of a private Nature having brought me to this Kingdom I take the very first Moments to present your Excelly. my most respectful Regards & to regret that the Length of my Voyage has deprivd me of the Oppy. of doing it personally as I am inform’d you have left this City very lately.1 I also take this Occasion through our respectable Friend Mr. Laurens to forward a Packet which our Friend Gerry with whom I spent the last Day in America intrusted to my Care in so special a Manner that I feel myself particularly happy in forwarding so as to ensure its safe Arrival (very uncommon Accidents excepted).2 As I doubt not he has communicated more perfectly than I can pretend to do the Occurrences of America deserving your Notice, it would be superfluous to repeat what he has said so much better. But as even a Repetition of pleasing Circumstances is not wholly ungrateful to those who feel for the Publick as you do, I think I may venture to assure you that the American Union has been strengthened rather than weakned by the Events of the last Summer. The Removal from Philada. & the prohibitory Restrictions pass’d here have contributed to this, in an eminent Degree & substituted a new Bond of Union to that which the Peace & a Cessation of the Influence of common Danger had in some Measure dissolved. Its Operation in America has very much alarm’d those who though their Bodies are there have Hearts yet in Great Brittain. They have through our publick Papers treated Congress with some indecent Abuse, but it is rather the Ebulletion of disappointed local Party, than the sense of the People. The Operation of these Events is also perceptible on the State of our Funds & we had when I left America more favourable Prospects of their Establishment than at any Period for 12 Months past.— Genl. Washington pass’d thro Philadelphia about the 15 December on his Way to Annapolis where (to use his own Expression) he intended to leave his Coat & Cockade—3
Dr. Witherspoon also arrived in the same Ship but not on any publick political Business he prays me to present his particular Respects. And if we can supply any Information or in any Respect be useful to you, you will please to command us without Reserve pointing out the Channel of Connyance which your own Discernment & better Acquaintance with the Country will suggest.—
{ 473 }
With every Sentiment of Respect & Esteem which I may with the utmost Justice assure you America feels for your Person & Services permit me to add my own in a particular Manner & believe me / with very great Truth & Regard / Dr. Sir / Your Excelly. most Obedt & / very Hbble Servt.
[signed] Jos: Reed
RC (Adams Papers); addressed: “His Excelly Mr. Adams”; endorsed: “Mr Reed London Jan. 30 / ansd Feb. 11. 1784.”
1. Reed had come to England with John Witherspoon. Mentioned later in the letter, Witherspoon was a Presbyterian minister, president of the College of New Jersey, and signer of the Declaration of Independence. The two men had been commissioned by the college to seek funds in England to pay for the institution’s rehabilitation from the effects of the war, but their efforts ultimately proved futile (DAB; Varnum Lansing Collins, President Witherspoon: A Biography, 2 vols., Princeton, 1925, 2:138–143).
2. This was Elbridge Gerry’s letter of 23 Nov. 1783, above, which JA received on 10 Feb. 1784 (to Reed, 11 Feb., LbC, APM Reel 107). For JA’s 27 June reply to Gerry, see note 1 to the 23 Nov. 1783 letter.
3. George Washington passed through Philadelphia on his way to Annapolis to formally present his resignation to Congress, which he did on 23 December. For Washington’s address and Congress’ response, see JCC, 25:837–839.

Docno: ADMS-06-15-02-0232

Author: Adams, John
Recipient: Cranch, John
Date: 1784-01-31

To John Cranch

[salute] Sir

Your Favour of the Seventeenth of this Month, was delivered to me, last night.— I left London on the third of this Month1 So that your kind Present of Game, afforded a Regall, to Mr Stockdale in Piccadilly, but I am not less obliged to you for it, than if I had been so fortunate as to receive it myself.— I beg you sir to accept my Sincere Thanks for it.
As the Nephew of my most valuable Brother Cranch I should have been happy to have met you in England. if the Time would have permitted, I should have wished to have made an Excursion to that Part of England where the Relations of my Friend Mr Palmer and those of my Brother reside.2 and if you sir, or any of your Friends should travail in Holland, I should be very glad to see them at the Hague.
I Should esteem it, as a favour if you would Send me a Copy of the Letter you allude to from Casco Bay.3 You may Address your Letter to me, at the Hague, by the Post.
I am, with great Regard for yourself and / your Connections, Sir your most obedient / and obliged humble servant
LbC (Adams Papers); internal address: “Mr John Cranch / an Attorney at Axminster / in Devonshire.”; APM Reel 107.
{ 474 }
1. According to JQA’s 13 Jan. letter to Peter Jay Munro (NNMus), he and his father left London at seven o’clock on the morning of 2 January.
2. JA, AA, and AA2 would visit the Cranch and Palmer relatives, including John and Joseph Cranch and John Palmer, in 1787. See JA, D&A, 3:203–210; AFC, 8:175–176.
3. For this letter from Thomas Hopkins, which Cranch enclosed with his reply of 11 Feb. (Adams Papers), see Cranch’s letter of 17 Jan., note 3, above.

Docno: ADMS-06-15-02-0233

Author: Adams, John
Recipient: Stockdale, John
Date: 1784-01-31

To John Stockdale

[salute] Sir

Your Favour of the 20th. was Sent me last night, and put me into a Fit of good Humour which continues to this moment.
The Letter containing the Medals, I beg you to open and deliver one set to Mr West and another to Mr Whiteford, in my Name.—1 You will please to make a Minute of the Postage you pay for me, which I will remit you.
The Hares were well disposed of, and I hope gave Pleasure to the little Family.— You could not have offerd one of them more properly than to Dr Jebb, for whom I have the highest Esteem, as one of the best Citizens of the little Commonwealth of the just upon Earth.
If I did not know that the Burthen of the State lies So heavily upon your shoulders I would invite you, to take a Trip to the Hague. <and drink a Glass of finer old Madeira than that you had from your Friend> I would not advise you to come in this Season to travel in Iceboats and Boors Waggons as I did.
It gives me Pleasure to hear that Mr Pitt rises in the Esteem of the People, because he has a fair Character and promisses great Things: nevertheless a Friend to Old England would wish for a Coalition, But Mr Fox is of So peremptery a Cast, and not always in the right, that I fancy it will be difficult, to form any Coalition in which he is not the Essence.
it will ever give me Pleasure to hear of your Welfare and to receive a Spice of the Politicks of the day, / with much Esteem, Sir your very humble / srt.
LbC (Adams Papers); internal address: “Mr. John Stockdale Piccadilly.”; APM Reel 107.
1. The medals were to go to Benjamin West, the artist, and Caleb Whitefoord, secretary to Richard Oswald during the 1782 Anglo-American peace negotiations.

Docno: ADMS-06-15-02-0234

Author: Staphorst, Nicolaas & Jacob van (business)
Author: Willink, Wilhem & Jan (business)
Author: La Lande & Fynje, de (business)
Recipient: Adams, John
Date: 1784-01-31

From Wilhem & Jan Willink, Nicolaas & Jacob van Staphorst, and De la Lande & Fynje

[salute] Sir

We are favoured with the honour of your Excellency’s letter of 29 of this month, whch. should have compiared Yesterday With us.
Mr. Wm Willink did himself the honour to wait on your Excellency the night before your departure, to inform you of the unsuccessfullness of all our repeated endeavours, and notwithstanding the favourable dispositions of our Regency, Considerations of so much importance with them opposed their good intentions, that they Could not be prevailed upon disposing favourable on our request.
We have however since not been quiet, but daily occupied we are in conference with the undertakers, by offering them an extraordinary premium on the remainder of the 2 Millions, and as they’ll meet Monday morning with us to make some demands, we Should wish to receive in answer to this your Excellencies order, if we Should conclude with them, in case we could Succeed with a sacrifice of 4 to 5 Per C: on that amount, for all the extraordinary gratifications and allowances, whch. we Suppose preferable in this Juncture above a tentamen of negotiating a new Loan against Six Per C: intrest, whch. however your Excellency Seems to consider, (So as we Surely have always done) preferable to the return of the bills, if however receiving your Excellency’s authorisation to the mentioned proposals. we could not succeed, it is very well you consent to our consulting with the undertakers. abt. a new Loan, with whom we Should by no means do any thing but on Security of getting the money.1
but we want to observe to your Excellency, that the intrest of 6 Per C: is in favour of the money Lenders, and can by no means bear the charges on the Loan, So the charges must not only be payed besides the intrest, but we are in real apprehension, that instead of having been 4 1/2 Per C. in all, would amount by the Juncture of the time to 6 Per C: all together, to whch. it Should be necessary to submit, and therefore we Should be of opinion to allow rather the extraord: premium of 4 to 5 Per C. on the remainder obligations in our hands; but we Submit with respect our Judgment to your Excellencies more enlightened understanding.2
{ 476 }
moreover we press the undertakers Seriously because we got information that the bank of philada. Stops payment, on acct. of false banknotes brought in circulation, whch. circumstance how prudent occasioned confusion there, and if it becomes publick, before we are able to conclude the matter, we are really fearfull, all our endeavours shall entierly miscarry, Some consider that for this fatal event, we must conclude the Sooner the better if possible, and not Stand on a triffle of a Percent more or less, whch. we Submit all to your Excelly’s. consideration, and beg the favour of your advice, if any thing of this Circumstance is known to you, as we should yet doubt of the veracity of this advice dated 9 dec:3
We have the honour to remain with great esteem / Sir / Your most Humb & Most / Obedient servants
[signed] Wilhem & Jan Willink
[signed] Nichs. & Jacob van Staphorst
[signed] de la Lande & fynje
RC (Adams Papers); internal address: “To his Excellency / John Adams Esqr / Hague”; endorsed: “Messrs Willinks & Co / 31. Jany. recd & ansd / 1. Feb. 1784.”
1. In his reply of 1 Feb., JA authorized the consortium to proceed with its negotiations for a new loan (LbC, APM Reel 107).
2. The terms offered should be compared with those in the proposed loan described in the 4 Feb. letters from the consortium (Adams Papers) and Wilhem & Jan Willink (JA, Works, 8:175) and in the contract for the second Dutch-American loan of 9 March (Adams Papers). In the course of their negotiations, the consortium managed to diminish the ultimate cost of the loan by lowering the stated interest rate from 6 percent to 4 percent but allowing the purchasers of the notes a larger “gratification” or “gratuity” than might otherwise have been the case.
3. This is a reference to the Bank of North America established by Robert Morris at Philadelphia in 1781. There were numerous instances of counterfeiting during this period, but there is no indication that the bank stopped payment on its bank notes as a consequence (Morris, Papers, 1:66–68; 7:28; 8:300–303; 9:308).
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.