Diary of John Quincy Adams, volume 1



7th. JQA


7th. Adams, John Quincy

We breakfasted early and were on our way by 8 o'clock. We stopp'd at Captain Brookes's1 house in Mystic, four miles from Cambridge, and about a quarter of a mile. We then rode 10 miles further; after which we stopp'd an hour to rest our horse. So far we found the roads very good: but the next 6 miles, to Mr. French,2 (the minister at Andover)'s house are very sandy and heavy. We dined there: Mr. French was not at home. At 3 o'clock, we left Andover and at about 5 ½ got to the river which runs by Haverhill. The roads were not good, being sometimes sandy, and sometimes very hilly. We cross'd the river in a flat bottom'd boat, and at 6 o'clock arrived at Mr. Shaw's;3 where I found my brother Tom, who when I left him was not 7 years old, and is now 13. Mr. Thaxter too who sailed in the first french Packet immediately after the Peace is here, and spent the evening at my uncle's. He is practising the Law and has a good run of business.


Capt. Caleb Brooks Jr. (1745–1812), brother of Gen. John Brooks and a distant cousin of JQA's through his father's (Boylston) family (Henry Bond, Family Memorials. Genealogies of the Families and Descendants of the Early Settlers of Watertown, Massachusetts . . ., 2 vols. in 1, Boston, 1855, p. 703–704, 723–724; Richard B. Coolidge, “The Brooks Estates in Medford from 1660 to 1927,” Medford Hist. Register, 30:5–7 [March 1927]).


Jonathan French, minister at South Church from 1772 (Sibley-Shipton, Harvard Graduates , 17:514–520).


John Shaw (1748–1794), brother-in-law of AA, minister at Haverhill from 1777. JQA was to live in his house until the following March. Shaw had been the preceptor of CA and TBA since 1783. JQA had been advised to study with Shaw until the following spring, though Shaw at this date had apparently not yet decided to take him as a student because of the great responsibility in trying “to qualify a young Gentle man to enter the University as Junior Sophister” (AA to JA, 28 April 1783; Elizabeth Smith Shaw to AA, 7 Sept. 1785, both Adams Papers).