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Diary of Charles Francis Adams, 1861

Tuesday 12th

12 March 1861

Tuesday 14th

14 March 1861
13 March 1861
Wednesday 13th

A delightfully soft, spring morning. At two o’clock I had a visit from Mr George B Holmes, who is anxious to be made Surveyor General of New Mexico and who came to supplicate me to go with him and see the President about it. I objected that my time was drawing to a close, and I should scarcely be able to write in the antichamber my turn for admission. He pressed it so hard however that I concluded to go. He had a carriage at the door which took us directly. But it turned out as I expected. There was a large collection of persons, senators, members, delegations &ca all scattered about without order or regulation. Formerly, when I have been here, the system of introduction allowed each person to see his way, but now it was symbolical of the absence of all method that prevails within. To remain was idle, so I excused myself from Mr Holmes and New Mexico, and walked home, calling on my way to see Mrs Frye, and Mrs John and Elizabeth Adams. The first could not see me. I found that Mr Gorch had called on me in my absence. He came again to urge me to stay. He said that the Senators had prevailed on him to stay, on the ground that the absence of the delegation was sacrificing the rights of the State. He had seen three heads of department, Messr Seward, Chase and Blair, and they had all said that the presence was such as to render it doubtful whether all the nominations would not be precipitated t once into the hands of those who were the most pressing.95 I said in reply that I could have remained yesterday, but now with all my family on my hands, every thing packed, and the house given up, I could not retreat. I added moreover that the newspapers had announced me as one of the prominent candidates for the English mission. If I were to stay for the purpose indicated it could not fail to become an apparent attempt to force that result. I could lend myself to no such spectacle. But that I believe that this difficult would not last many days. It would be decided against us, and then if my presence were wanted to work out other result, I would stand read to return at a moment’s warning. He seemed to see the force of this and assented to it, but he asked me if I would take the responsibility of advising him to send by telegraph to call back to the other members. I replied affirmatively. He had letter reduce to writing so far as he could remember it the substance and the words of the heads of department, and upon those rely for a justification . I could sustain my share of the responsibility. He then left, and we soon afterwards took our departure. Our trip to Philadelphia was without incident, and at the Continental Hotel we met Mr Kuhn and my daughter, and had a comfortable supper.

Cite web page as:

Charles Francis Adams, Sr., [date of entry], diary, in Charles Francis Adams, Sr.: The Civil War Diaries (Unverified Transcriptions). Boston: Massachusetts Historical Society, 2015. http://www.masshist.org/publications/cfa-civil-war/view?id=DCA61d072