Diary of Charles Francis Adams, volume 2

Wednesday. 18th.

Friday. 20th.

Thursday. 19th. CFA


Thursday. 19th. CFA
Thursday. 19th.

Morning pleasant. I was oppressed with a fit of dullness and low spirits. How much my temper and disposition changes by circumstances. Returned to town alone. At the Office. Found a letter from my Mother1 which was extremely dull and pained me considerably. Another from my father in a pleasant and confiding tone. He invariably intimates however his disposition to suppose me a political man, a course which only strong circumstances could induce me to pursue.2 Read Kent. Afternoon, Executive Record. Went to hear the Sheriff of the County deliver a Lecture in the Court room upon the difference in the duties of an English and an American Sheriff.3 An amusing if not useful production. The bar generally were present. It was a voluntary on his part and caused peals of laughter. In the evening, took a walk in the Mall. The weather was warm and evening very beautiful.




JQA exhorted his son “to give a portion of your attention to these Dinner Speeches, for which ... all men in public life will henceforward be frequently taxed, and for which it will be necessary that you should be prepared” (JQA to CFA, 13 June 1828, Adams Papers).


The sheriff was Charles Pinkney Sumner (1776–1839), father of Charles Sumner. His lecture, read to the Suffolk county bar, was published in the American Jurist for July 1829.