Diary of Charles Francis Adams, volume 1

Thursday. August 19th. VIII.

Saturday. August 21st. VIII.

Friday. August 20th. VIII:30. CFA


Friday. August 20th. VIII:30. CFA
Friday. August 20th. VIII:30.

Missed Prayers this Morning, arose, and found myself much refreshed. After taking breakfast I went at Chapman’s invitation to Freshpond as he was going to give a treat to the students who were in town, for his part. Almost a dozen went up, most of them are immediate acquaintances, and we amused ourselves in the morning in rolling at ninepins. This did not take with as much effect however as usual and some to rowing and some to sailing in the boats upon the pond. This is one of the prettiest places any where round. The bend of the lake, for I might call it one without impropriety, makes the place on which the house stands a sort of headland or peninsula and the thick shade of the trees on it which grow close gives it at a distance a very pretty effect. We took the largest boat among the whole, stocked it with provisions for a voyage, and went off.

Our sail was an extremely pleasant one, we had a song and enjoyed ourselves considerably, but as I saw we were likely to have a boistrous return, I pressed Rundlet to get home as quick as possible, some of our number not being in a state to behave perfectly properly. I am fond of social amusements but I cannot endure turbulence. It disgusts me immediately. On the whole however we had an agreable day of it and returned at three o’clock pretty well fatigued. We obtained a dinner or rather a desert at home and sat there sacrificing Otis’s last wine, Fay being still present, the most amazing of the party. He has not arrived at a seriousness of his being so far in College that it is requisite that he should act like a man.

As we were determined to finish every thing which had the appearance of public property, we went to Lothrop’s where we spent the afternoon. I was so tired and fatigued with these scenes however that I wished myself often away. After tea however, I continued, paid a visit to Lunt the Senior and then went to Cunningham’s where we 296continued drinking wine. I was too tired to stay however. The arrival of General Lafayette1 has excited the nation and it will probably be a cause of much festivity here. We argued the possibility of bringing our company out upon the occasion but have not much hope. I went home and very soon retired to rest after a fatiguing day. X.


General Lafayette (1757–1834), the ever-popular Revolutionary War hero, visited the United States from 14 August 1824 to 9 September 1825 as the guest of the nation. Enthusiastically welcomed by Americans, he traveled through the eastern seaboard states and up the Mississippi River. In late August 1824 he came to Boston, attended commencement at Harvard, and visited JA at Quincy. See J. Bennett Nolan, Lafayette in America Day by Day, Baltimore, 1934, p. 243 ff.; Josiah Quincy, Figures of the Past, Boston, 1926, p. 86–132.