Papers of John Adams, volume 9

From Arthur Lee

To C. W. F. Dumas

To Thomas Digges, 6 – 7 June 1780 JA Digges, Thomas To Thomas Digges, 6 – 7 June 1780 Adams, John Digges, Thomas
To Thomas Digges
6-7? June 1780 1

Yours of 26 ultimo is before me. That of 9th.2 have received. I have received the Box of Books &c—but nothing since. Pray drop all the Papers, I will get the Courant the Same way, that I have the General Advertiser and Morning post. I wish to have a Poem that is advertised, in which some American Characters are Said to be drawn3—good or bad—let it come. I want also that Volume of the Remembrancer,4 the Prior documents, which contains the History of the rise and progress of the present disputes with America. The Volume you sent me is not the right. Whenever any news arrives from Charlestown I will send it. A Vessell is arrived at Cadiz from Boston. She Says that the English have burned their barracks at Long Island and Kingsbridge, and 380evacuated Several of their out posts, and embarked almost all their Troops, Supposed for Charlestown. She adds that the Troops, Tories and Refugees, treat the People of New York much better than usual. I will send the report of the Constitution of Mass. as soon as I can get a compleat Copy, News of great Importance is expected every moment from various quarters. It is much admired, that the English dont see, that the unanimous Voice of Mankind is against them. Humankind think them embarked in an unjust Cause, against the rest of the World, as well as against America. All the World think they have a right to a share in American trade—and that it would be ruinous to all the rest of the World, if England should monopolise it. Why should Men contend us Providence and quarall with the destinies?

Pray what do the Wise ones think of the new Plan of Congress for their Paper money? is it not advantageous for the american public? is it not a dead doing blow to the Hopes of old England?

LbC (Adams Papers); directed to: “Mr Diggs.” Although the Letterbook refers to Thomas Digges by name, the recipient's copy was probably addressed to W. S. Church or one of Digges' other pseudonyms.


In the Letterbook this letter is undated, but follows one of 6 June and precedes another of the 7th. It may have been written as late as 9 June, for JA's endorsement on Digges' letter of 26 May, to which this is clearly a reply, indicates that he answered it on 9 June, but no letter of that date has been found (from Thomas Digges, 26 May, descriptive note, above).


Although Digges notes in his letter of 8 June (below) that he had written on 9 May, no letter of that date has been found.


This was probably The American Times: A Satire (London, 1780) in which most of the major figures of the revolution, including JA, were satirized. Later in 1780 the poem was reprinted by James Rivington at New York (T. R. Adams, American Controversy , 2:688– 690; Evans, No. 16697).


JA's reference to The Remembrancer indicates that the box that he had received was probably that sent by Digges on 25 April. For its contents, see Digges' letter of 28 April (above), and the list enclosed with his letter of 8 June (below).