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Letter from Abigail Adams to John Adams, 2 March 1796

My Dearest Friend

Our Little Town of Quincy is become so rich that they can vote a Thousand dollors to Build a School House, yet can not pay a Tax to their Minister which has been due for more than two years. Your proportion of the Tax for the present Year including your part of the Iou for the School house is 18 dollors 30 Cents. The Braintree Tax I have not yet seen. Both the collector and the School Committe want the Tax. I promised Baxter that he should have 50 dollors of it provided he would make an exertion to get the rest for Mr. Wibird as he said he was determined to do by March meeting. Our Neighbour Joseph Baxter is the collector. Captain Beals has really made a fine story out to the Town and prevaild upon them to vote and Tax for this Thousand Dollors to Build the School House. I should have supposed 500 might have answerd as well. It is to be set upon the Green by the meeting house, built 2 storey high the School House to be divided, part for Girls and part for Boys. Over the whole a large Room for the Town to do buisness in, or to be let as an Assembly Room. Quincy is to Rival Hingham. We shall have an accademy, and being so much nearer Boston Gentlemen and Ladies will prefer sending their children here. It will bring into Town a mint of money, and raise the value of estates in Town six pr cent, and all this I have done for the Town. At this very economical time of Building I fancy the cash will come harder than the vote. The Timber is cut and Pratt has engaged to Build it. Mr. Wibird has not been out but

once this winter, and then was not able to get in or out of the Carriage but with help. How can you says Yorick; Captain Shandy live comfortless and alone, without a Bosom to lean Your head upon - or trust your cares to? Next to that, is being seperated half a Year at a Time. No Man even if he is sixty Years of Age ought to have more than three Months at a Time from his Family, and our Country is a very hard hearted tyrannical niggardly Country. It has committed more Robberies upon me, and obliged me to more sacrifices than any other woman in the Country and this I will mantain against any one who will venture to come forward and dispute it with me. As there never can be a compensation for me, I must sit down with this consolation that it might have been worse.

We have a young Gentleman preaching for us by the Name of Fisk. Upon the whole I like him better than any other we have had, In the first place he has an excellent countanance. In the 2d he is very social and much of a Gentleman, and in the 3d he is a very good preacher. I do not however expect that we shall ever be so fortunate as to get all these qualifications united in a minister for Quincy.

The Season is mild, the snow is leaving us. I must think of attacking the canker worm if any such I find. Grain is rising fast. I am thankfull I am so well supplied with flower. I have not been able to purchase Rye under 9 Shillings pr Bushel. Corn has got to Seven I hear. If our places are out I hope we shall not have occasion to Buy. I must soon have another hand. Mr. Bass s Services are not worth much. The old

Man has the Jaundice, and is weak and feeble. Copland has been so steady through the winter that I must keep him I presume provided he does not rise too high in his price. He knows so well every part of the Farm and the buisness, that with new hands I should be at a loss in your absence.

We have had for three days last week a fog as thick as Philadelphia, so it put me in mind of the old story. Growls &c. I hope to shake it of, for I am better of my cold, and the Bark I have had recourse to.

The last of Your Fathers sisters dyed a fortnight since. I learnt it only from the Chronical for the Family never sent us any word, not even to your Mother who was here on saturday and desires to be rememberd to you with parental affection. I bought the Good Lady a winter Gown when I was in Town, with which she was much pleasd. It did me good to see how much, and I have it in Charge over and over again to thank you for the flower sent. I think her Health better for the discharge she has had from her Arm.

I am with the sincerest Regard ever Your
A Adams

[Endorsement -- see page image]

Cite web page as: Letter from Abigail Adams to John Adams, 2 March 1796 [electronic edition]. Adams Family Papers: An Electronic Archive. Massachusetts Historical Society. http://www.masshist.org/digitaladams/
Original manuscript: Adams, Abigail. Letter from Abigail Adams to John Adams, 2 March 1796. 4 pages. Original manuscript from the Adams Family Papers, Massachusetts Historical Society.
Source of transcription: Adams Papers Editorial Project. Unverified transcriptions.
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