A website from the Massachusetts Historical Society; founded 1791.

Diary of Charles Francis Adams, 1861

Saturday 27th

27 July 1861

Monday 29th

29 July 1861
28 July 1861
Sunday 28th.

The news from home was not bad, yet it made me restless all night. Thus it is on each arrival of letters my spirits invariably sink. My instincts rather than reasoning tell me that the country is on the verge of ruin. Yet the accounts rather favor a prompt termination of the war. Western Virginia seems to be cleared of rebellion, a large force dissipated and the cords are tightening around Richmond, which is now the seat of the rebellion. If that place can be conquered and the border states thus preserved198 perhaps the country may swing back again. If on the other hand there should be reverses, then must follow the only solution of the problems I can see, and that is emancipation. The mind can scarcely open to the conception of the results that may follow. Yet on the whole, that is the only safe basis for the States of the North. I hope it will come. I attended with my son Brooks at a small chapel built at the expense of Miss Coutts, a little below the Victoria railway station. The service was more simply conducted than in the larger Churches, but the sermon was very much of the usual kind. The congregation was fair but not full. From thence I went round to call upon Mr Billings in regard to an order for more arms which I have received from the Department at Washington. I urged him to go to Paris and confer with Mr Dayton and the contractors in that city. He consented to go tomorrow night, and I wrote to Mr Dayton to that effect. Went to walk in Kensington gardens with my Wife and daughter, and there met Mr Morse the consul with whom I had much conversation on the subject of these purchases of arms. Evening, Mrs and Miss Motley paid us a visit.. Some talk about the shocking death of Professor Longfellow’s Wife. This is the second case in Boston society of death of women by burning their dresses, within a short time. Some safeguard should be devised against this danger.

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=DCA61d209