Papers of John Adams, volume 1

From Joseph Hawley, 30 June 1773 Hawley, Joseph JA


From Joseph Hawley, 30 June 1773 Hawley, Joseph Adams, John
From Joseph Hawley
Dear Sir Northampton June 30th. 1773

The letter inclosed herewith contains My Answer to the young Gentn. you was pleased recommend Me to as an Assistant in his Study of the Law and it is in the affirmative.1

I have heard Nothing of our Publick Affairs since I left Boston.2 I have only to intreat, That, as I know you Sir can do Much to influence them Nothing be done through Strife or vain glory—and that in all cases which will possibly admit of it, great Consideration and thorough discussion precede action i.e. in other Words that We look before We leap.

I am Sir with the Sincerest respect and greatest esteem Yr. Most Obedt. Humble Sert, Joseph Hawley

RC (Adams Papers); addressed: “Mr. Adams.” Docketed in an unidentified hand, incorporating the address: “Major Hawley to Mr. Adams August 30. 1773 consenting to take Levy Lincoln into his office.”


Hawley's enclosed letter to Levi Lincoln of Hingham (1749–1820) has not been found. Lincoln, Harvard 1772, spent a year as clerk in the office of Daniel Farnham of Newburyport before applying to Hawley. Later in his distinguished career, Lincoln became Attorney General of the United States ( DAB ; Waldo Lincoln, History of the Lincoln Family, Worcester, Mass., 1923, p. 157).


Hawley represented Northampton in the House in 1773–1774. Although the first session was prorogued on 29 June 1773, Hawley's last committee appointment was recorded on 18 June, and it is likely he did not attend much later than that date (Mass., House Jour. , 1773–1774, p. 66).