Papers of John Adams, volume 16

From the Marquis de Lafayette

To Elbridge Gerry

251 William Bingham to John Adams, 26–27 June 1784 Bingham, William Adams, John
From William Bingham
Dr sir— Amsterdam June 26th 1784

When I had last the pleasure of Seeing you, I was not altogether determined what Route I Should take— I rather inclined to the Idea of returning by the Hague—1

From a Desire of introducing more Variety & Novelty in my Excursion thro this Country, I have now resolved on passing thro’ Utrecht, for which place I Shall take my Departure in a few Days—

If you Should have no further occasion for the Resolves of Congress which I left with you, I Shall thank you to forward them to me directed to the Care of Mess W & J Willink—2

I have received Letters of a late Date from Philadelphia— On a Notification to Congress, (on the part of Dr Franklin) of Mr Jay’s Intention to embark for America, they proceeded to the Nomination of a Person to fill his Place, when Mr Jefferson was appointed, who was on the point of Departure for Europe—

Mr Jay is appointed Minister of foreign Affairs;—in the propriety of this Choice, I have no doubt you will Sincerely concur with me.

I return you many Thanks for your polite Attentions during our Residence at the Hague

Mrs B desires her best Compliments to you, to which please to accept of those of / Dr sir / Your obed hble servt

Wm Bingham June 27th 1784—

I have this Moment received the Journals of Congress untill 5 May, by which I find that the report of the Committee on the reduction of the Civil List, mentioned the discontinuance of the Agent at the Hague, as well as a considerable reduction in all the Departments, Superintendant of finance, foreign Ministers &c &c— As the Journals do not come down to So low a Date as to make known whether this Arrangement was adopted by Congress I think it would be prudent not to impart the disagreable Intelligence to Mr Dumas—3

RC (Adams Papers).


JA wrote to JQA on 21 June that “Mr. Bingham and his Lady have been here and Spent a few Days with me. I introduced them to the Princess of Orange and the young Princess conversed with her, very agreably in English. Last Evening came an Invitation to them to sup at Court this night, but they went off on Saturday [19 June] for Amsterdam” ( AFC , 5:351).


On 26 June JA wrote to Wilhem & Jan 252 Willink, requesting the firm to send Bingham the Journals of Congress that Bingham had left with him (LbC, APM Reel 107).


On 5 May resolutions were offered to reduce the number of governmental offices as well as salaries. It was proposed to discontinue the “Agent at the Hague” and to reduce the salaries of “the Superintendant of finance” and “the three foreign ministers.” None of the resolutions was adopted ( JCC , 26:342–348).