Adams Papers

To John Adams from James Lovell, 26 December 1781

From James Lovell

Philadelphia 26th: December 1781


I have not yet been made certain, that you comprehend that Cypher which I used in my Letters to you, and which will yet awhile be used.

You are to form Alphabets equal in number and of the same commencement and Range, as the Letters of the first sixth part of the family Name where you and I supped last with Mrs. Adams, and you are to look alternately into those constructed Alphabets opposite to my figures, for the Elements to spell with, some figures however I may have used as Baulks.1

James Lovell

RC (Adams Papers); addressed: “John Adams Esquire.” Sent as an enclosure in Robert R. Livingston to JA, 26 Dec., above.

1 For Lovell’s previous efforts to explain his cipher, see Lovell to JA, 21 June, and references in note 4 (vol. 11:381–383).

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