Adams Papers

From Cotton Tufts to Abigail Smith Adams, 30 June 1798

Weymouth June 30th. 1798

I wrote to you about the 20th. Inst. which probably you have receiv’d by this Time—I rejoice to hear that Mr. Marshall has arrived and hope for the Arrival of the other Envoys soon—Their long & patient stay at Paris under a State of Humiliation, was considerd by many as too degrading, it may however have answered some good Purposes and eased the Minds of some who perhaps would have thought, had they broke off the Negociation much sooner, that sufficient Pains had not been taken to effect an Accommodatn. and with respect to many others, their Sympathy has been excited towards the Envoys and their Resentment towards our Enemies; upon the whole a greater Unanimity of Sentiment has upon this Occasion prevaild among People, than if they had left France before they were able to give Conviction to the whole World of our unremitting Endeavours to procure Peace & Reconciliation, our Readiness to redress Wrongs and our Determination to Support our Rights and on the other Hand of the base and sordid arts, flimsy Pretensions & perfidious Designs of Tallerand & his Employers—. Our Envoys have assuredly done themselves Honour in their Memorials & replies to the French Government—Those have been forcible and manly but well guarded—

Since my last to You my worthy Friend & Classmate Mr. Nathn. Appleton has left this World—In him and the two worthy Clergyman who departed not long since, Our Country, Our literary and religious Societies have lost Three valuable Standards & Friends. Well may we say Help Lord for the Godly Men cease and the faithful fail from among the Children of Men—

When will Congress rise, when will you return to Quincy? I am afraid the President will not get away very soon—the numerous appointments of Officers to Armies &Vessells constitute a new Burden and must create much Expence of Time as well as much Anxiety—by what is going on in our Seaport Towns we may infer that there will be no want of Ships of War—if Government is disposed to employ them—but to officer them well is a Work of Difficulty—it is unfortunate that the Commander of the Constitution Frigate is very unpopular among the Sailors—The Appointment was made before the President came into Office, otherwise Pains would have been taken to have prevented it—I speak only on Fame— I wish for your Return not only on your own Account, but also on Mine—the large Family I have to provide for at Quincy makes me wish for particular Instructions & Directions, unused to provide other than for my own Family—I startle at the dayly Demands—[I] hardly know how to proceed—I know the Consumption of Meat &Drink must be great, where the Number of Workmen are many—But How were they supplied with Rum, Sugar, Molasses, Tea, Coffee &c <and> in what Quantities?—I do not know of any Waste, but I find that a Barrell of Rum will scarcely carry them through the Summer—and the Calls for Tea Sugar &c are frequent—Mr. Porter and his Wife frequently tell me that they are ashamed to call upon me, but cannot help it—they appear both of them to be prudent and to make the best of every Thing. I am sometimes tempted to buy a Barrell of Sugar & other Articles in Proportion—I have not had experience enough to determine what would be the best Oeconomy in this Case

French has repeatedly pressed me to build a new Corn House, as new one is much wanted—but this will not be built without orders for that Purpose—In one of your Letters I found that the President has not entirely relinquished his Plan of building a new Barn &c—it appears to me that it is absolutely necessary—and if determind upon the Stuff ought to be provided this Summer or fall—You ought at all Times to have as much as 4 or 5th. Boards lodgd <[. . .]> near your House for Exigencies—a convenient Woodhouse & necessary you will set up, and then your Domestic Buildings will be in good order—I wish you to hint to the President that if he does not return to Quincy soon & occupy his Possessions He must not be surprizd, if I should enter <and> take Possession & improve

Mine & Mrs. Tuft’s best Regards to the President and beg you to accept the same

I am Affectionately / Yr H St

Cotton Tufts

July 1. Very hot Thermometer at 3 o Clock Pm. 92—

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