Adams Papers

From William Smith Shaw to Abigail Smith Adams, 5 December 1798

Philadelphia Dec 5 1798

My dear Aunt

I received your letter of the 18 of Nov last Wednesday. The president received yours of the 22d yesterday & of the 25 this morning—They have made us quite happy to see in what excellent spirits you are and to hear of your better health.

I read Barlows letter to the president at Springfield. There can be no doubts of its authenticity. Mr Thatcher of Massachusetts said that Mr. [. . .] who brought from Paris last summer Talleyrands letter to the commissioners, told a Friend of of his that he saw the letter at Paris at Mr. Barlows house, that it was directed to the Vice president but Mrs. Barlow prayed her husband not to send it to him for if he did it would be published, and then she said, it would never do for them to return to America—it was afterwards thought best to send it to Baldwin her brother. What shall we say of a man who after publickly professing the christian religion inculcating its truth and preaching its doctrines could write such a letter as this? His soul must be a composition of as much baseness and corruption as even was the cauldron of Macbeth.

The official accounts of Admirals Nelsons victory gladdens every heart. I hope soon to hear of the destruction of Buonaparte & his army. I have invoked old Nilus from the ooze of his fertilizing streams, and beseeched him to overflow with the swiftest torrents, the land he has long enriched, & sweep the prince of robbers from the face of the earth.

I have sent you three of four papers every day since we have been in the city, all which I hope you have punctually received. You desired me to subscribe for Mr. Fennos paper for you, but I thought you would get them sooner and more punctually & without any expence to send them as I do. Please to say whether I have done right or not?

We have all that heart can desire to make one happy, but Aunt & cousins company but that is every thing. I am my dear aunt in very / great haste yours affectionately

W S. S:

MHi: Adams Papers.

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