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Diary of Charles Francis Adams, 1864

Wednesday 11th

11 May 1864

Friday 13th

13 May 1864
12 May 1864
Thursday 12th

The topics that spring up now are so numerous that I find myself more busy than ever on this day of the week writing Despatches. The situation of Europe is becoming daily more difficult. Were they less so in America, I should relish nothing better than to dwell upon them; but as it is the work they would make in addition is too much. Independently of the Danish complications, the situation of parties in this country is becoming more interesting. Mr Gladstone12 has just made a speech in the Commons, which foreshadows a new era in party politics. He has enunciated a proposition in the right of suffrage, sound in itself, which is finally recognized will materially alter the Constitution of England. It is the key note of a new party which may struggle long but will ultimately carry the day. The immediate affect will be to accelerate the downfall of this ministry, which, as it is, hangs on the life of Palmerston. A tory government must succeed, the attendant of which will be the revival of the popular party. It was quite late before I got through. My mind much depressed today by the receipt of a letter of my daughter Louisa to her Mother last night, which gives a sad account of a third severe illness within six months. I much fear that she is not understood by her physicians or else she has an organic disease beyond their skill. If she continues at Newport I see no prospect of a change for the better. If on the other hand, she attempt to proceed on her voyage, her strength may prove unequal to the trial. At this distance the suspense and the idea of her loneliness are extremely trying. We dined quietly at home. In the evening we all went to the South Kensington Museum, where Lord Granville gave an entertainment to the Prince and Princess of Wales. As the evening was clear and milde the effect was much more pleasant than I have ever experienced before. We got there punctually at half past nine but the royal guests did not arrive for an hour. We wandered about looking at the improvements and as usual recognizing the company. On the whole the spectacle was pretty, but it was rather long. At last they came up into the reception room where were the usual bows and smiles, and talks about nothing. I noticed that most of the German diplomats were absent. The relations with the Princess are not pleasant. We got away at about midnight, with great ease and comfort.

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=DCA64d133