Papers of John Adams, volume 8

To Joseph Gardoqui & Sons

To Michel Lagoanere

312 To Joseph Gardoqui & Sons, 24 January 1780 JA Gardoqui, Joseph, & Sons (business)


To Joseph Gardoqui & Sons, 24 January 1780 Adams, John Gardoqui, Joseph, & Sons (business)
To Joseph Gardoqui & Sons
Gentlemen Bayonne Jany. 24. 1780

I have but just Time to inform you by the Return of our Guide, that We all arrived in safety and in rather better Health than When We took our Leave of you, at this Place, last night. After 8 or 9 Leagues of bad Way, We found the Roads excellent, and the Accommodations at the Taverns all the Way, very comfortable. I assure you We discovered two or three fine Chimneys,1 besides that which you mentioned to Us, which contributed not a little to our Health and Comfort.

We were all much pleased with the Appearance of the Country through Biscay and Guipuscoa, the Houses Seeming commodious, and properly distributed about upon the Farms, instead of appearing in little Villages of Mud Walls mouldering into Ruins. We could not help reflecting that Liberty produces similar Effects, upon the Happiness of human Kind wherever you find it.2

Mr. Dana, Mr. Thaxter and Mr. Allen, with all the Children join with me in presenting to your House, our most sincere Thanks for the Thousand Civilities and the essential assistance We received at Bilboa. I have the Hono

Our Guide and his People, behaved extreamly well, and did everything in their Power for our Accommodation. I have the Honour to be with much Respect and Esteem, Gentn. your most obligd & obedient sert

LbC (Adams Papers).


On the journey to Bilbao, JA had complained that houses and inns lacked chimneys, and that the smoke escaped only through small holes in the roof. See JA, Diary and Autobiography , 2:415–429 passim; 4:214–231 passim; Adams Family Correspondence , 3:259.


JA commented more extensively on the political liberties allowed the semi-autonomous Basque provinces, and on the impact of those liberties upon the local economy, in his Diary and Autobiography (2:432; 4:229–235 passim ).