Diary of Charles Francis Adams, volume 2

Wednesday. May 23d.

Friday May 25th.

Thursday May 24th. CFA


Thursday May 24th. CFA
Thursday May 24th.

Morning as usual. Occupied very much all day. I employed the afternoon in writing the final copy of the letter to Mr. Brooks, of which 132I took a Copy for myself.1 This is a matter which I am delighted to get over, but I shall wait the answer with some doubt. It is an exposition of my situation so far as I am able to judge of it. I did not send it today. In the evening Mr., Mrs. Frye, Miss Buchanan and the Miss Roberdeaus spent the evening here, which was very much as usual.


Writing to his future father-in-law, CFA tried to answer objections which he thought might be made to his engagement to Abigail. He admitted having proposed precipitously, but “Time, want of communication, no acquaintance with the friends she confided [in], and . . . the rumor of assiduous rivals were ideas . . . constantly . . . before my imagination. . . .” As to his ability to support a wife, CFA candidly reviewed his financial, prospects. JQA’s fortune was “tolerably handsome but of a nature not very serviceable to himself”; if defeated in the approaching presidential election, he would be obliged to bear the expense of setting up a new domestic establishment at Quincy. In that event, all his sons would have to make financial sacrifices; “for myself,” CFA declared, “I am sure that I would be the last person to wish to trouble him at a time when he would require any thing but annoying solicitation.” To quiet fears that he might follow the family tradition and quit the law for politics, CFA wrote that he disliked public life. So long as GWA continued in politics, CFA would be content with his profession. Should his brother fail, however, CFA might feel compelled to seek public office, so that the character of the Adams “name should not be said to deteriorate in the generation to which I belong” (CFA to P. C. Brooks, 24 May 1827, LbC, Adams Papers).