Papers of John Adams, volume 15

To Robert R. Livingston

From John Wheelock

To Edward Augustus Holyoke, 10 June 1783 Adams, John Holyoke, Edward Augustus
To Edward Augustus Holyoke
Sir, Paris June 10th. 1783.

Upon an Intimation from my Friend Dr. Tufts of Weymouth, that the Medical Society, of which you are President, desired to extend its Connections in Europe, I ventured to apply to the Chiefs of the Royale Société de Médecine at Paris, and met with a more complaisant Reception than I expected.


Enclosed are Copies of Letters which have passed upon the Occasion, and of the Diploma, which is the Result of them.1 The Originals I shall bring with me, or send by a careful Hand.

I hope the Medical Society will pardon my Presumption in going so far without their Authority— But the Proposition once hinted at was recieved with so much Earnestness, that I could not recede.

With great Respect, I have the honor to be, / Sir, / your most obedient & / most humble Servant.

John Adams.2

RC in John Thaxter’s hand (MBCo:Bowditch Book); addressed: “Edward Augustus Holyoke Esqr. / President of the Medical Society established in Boston. / residing at / Salem. / Massachusetts.—”; internal address: “Edward Augustus Holyoke Esqr. / President of the Medical Society / Massachusetts.—”; endorsed: “From his Excellency / Jno Adams Esqr. to. the Presid.LbC (Adams Papers); APM Reel 110.


For the enclosed letters that JA exchanged with Etienne Louis Geoffroy, Joseph Marie François de Lassone, and Félix Vicq d’Azyr between 20 Dec. 1782 and 8 March 1783, see vol. 14:142–143, 144, 232–234, 303, 518, 521. The final letter from Lassone is of 3 June, above. JA recorded all of them, including this letter to Holyoke, on p. 9–14 of Lb/JA/22, APM Reel 110. The original letters from the French correspondents are all in MBCo:Bowditch Book, containing the early records of the Massachusetts Medical Society. JA also enclosed the diploma that made the relationship between the two societies official and probably a copy of the Royal Society’s Journal de médecine militaire, both of which he received with Félix Vicq d’Azyr’s letter of 3 Feb. (vol. 14:232–234). The former is among the records of the medical society; the latter, while received, has not been found. For the medical society’s response to JA’s efforts on its behalf, see Holyoke’s letter of 6 Nov., below.


In JA’s hand.