Diary of John Adams, volume 3

Fryday 2 of July. AA Fryday 2 of July. Adams, Abigail
Fryday 2 of July.

A fine wind and a pleasent day. Our sea sickness has left us in a great measure. Went all of us upon Deck to enjoy the fresh air, had our rooms cleaned out, begin to feel a little more reconciled to our confinement. Hemd a hankerchief upon Deck. Yesterday mor'g the Capt. sent an embassy to the Ladies representing the distressed state of our poor cow, who by the late Storm had been disabled from standing for several days and tho several attempts had been made to raise her, they had proved unsuccessfull, but as she was particularly devoted to the Ladies, he thought himself under obligation to consult them whether she should be put out of her misiry; or die a lingering Death. Col. Norton was charged with the message and deliverd it in form— upon which Sentance of Death was pronounced upon her; and she was accordingly consigned to a watery grave; but not without mourning for we feel her loss most essentially.—This Day fortnight I left my habitation! Dear Cottage how often do I look back to your peacefull Walls, and Breath a Sigh to your memory. Where is my next abode? 162No matter where: so that it only be, in the arms of my dearest, best of Friends. I hardly dare trust my immagination or anticipate the day. Cruel sleep how have you tormented me?

Saturday 3 July. AA Saturday 3 July. Adams, Abigail
Saturday 3 July.

A fine morning. Rose by six o clock. Went upon deck. None of the Gentlemen up; our Second Mate, a grand son of the Revd. Dr. Chauncy of Boston. He was upon deck and handed me out. A likely young fellow whose countanance is a good Letter of recommendation. We were all prejudiced in his favour as soon as we saw him; he told me to day that he was taken a prisoner during the War, and carried to Plimouth jail in England where after being confined a Year he made his escape and got to Holland, where he saw Mr. Adams, who gave him money and a letter to Commodore Gillion but that he had sailed for America before he reached the Vessel. He said there were several other prisoners with him at that time who received Money from Mr. Adams. It always give me pleasure when I hear of the kindness of my best Friend to the poor and the needy. The Blessing of him that is ready to perish come upon him. By this said our Blessed saviour shall all Men know that ye are my diciples, if ye have Love to one an other; how many inducements does the Christian Religion offer to excite us to universal Benevolence and Good will towards each other, and yet how often do we suffer the vilest of passions to Dominer over us and extinguish from our Bosoms every generous principal.

This afternoon saw a sail. She bore down to speak with us. Said she was from Abberdeen bound to Novia Scotia, was full of Emigrants —men, women and children. Capt. Cullen in the brigg John, designd afterward for Philadelphia, wanted to put some Letters on Board of us. Our Capt. offerd to lay too, if she would higst out her Boat, but instead of that they attempted to come so near as to throw them on Board, and by that means were in danger of running on Board of us. The Capt. was allarmed, and gave them a hearty broad side: obliged to croud all our sails to keep clear; and tho I was first pleased with the sight of her, I was so much allarmed by our danger, that I wished her many leagues of. We put away as fast as possible without her Letters. —We suppose ourselves in Latitude 42.

Sunday July 4th 1784. AA Sunday July 4th 1784. Adams, Abigail
Sunday July 4th 1784.

This is the Anniversary of our Glorious Independance.

O thou! by whose Almighty Nod the Scale, of Empires rises, or alternate falls, 163 Send forth the Saveing virtues round our land In bright patrol; white peace, and social Love, The tender looking Charity, intent on Gentle Deeds, and sheding tears through Smiles, Undaunted Truth, and Dignity of mind Courage composed and keen; sound temperance Healthfull in Heart and look; Clear Chastity with blushes reddening as she moves along Disordered at the deep regard she draws; Rough Industery; Activity untir'd, With copious Life informed and all awake; While in the Radient front, superiour shines That first parental virtue, publick Zeal; Who throws o'er all an equal wide survey; And ever museing on the common Weal, Still Labours glorious with some great design;

Whilst the Nations of Europe are enveloped in Luxery and dissipation; and a universal venality prevails throughout Britain, may the new empire, Gracious Heaven, become the Guardian and protector of Religion and Liberty, of universal Benevolence and Phylanthropy. May those virtues which are banished from the land of our Nativity, find a safe Assylum with the inhabitants of this new world.

We have a fine wind and a clear sky. We go at 7 knots an hour; I hope two Sundays more, will bring us safe to land but we have all conquerd our Sea Sickness, and are able to do much better than for the first ten days. It is said of Cato, that one of the three things which he regreted at the close of Life; was that he had once gone by sea when he might have made his journey by land; alass poor Cato! I fancy thy Philosophy was not proof against this dispiritting disease.