Washington 14. December 1817.
My dear Charles.
A very few days after my arrival in this City, I received your Letter of 19. September, the contents of which I dare say you have before this time forgotten; unless you kept a copy of it, as you remember you used to do, of the Letters that you wrote to me from St. Petersburg, when I was at Ghent.
This Letter of yours of 19. September last, I have kept upon my file, ever since I received it; fully determined to answer it, as soon as I should have a moment of leisure for that purpose. For it deserved an answer for two reasons—first, because it was written so soon after we had left you, and thereby gave a proof of your affection and duty to your Parents; and secondly because it was written carefully; and in a very good hand—It has been a real affliction to me, that I could not sooner write an answer to it, and assure you how much I was gratified in receiving it.—I shall not blame you, for having so long omitted to write me again, as you have the reason to alledge, that I had not answered that; but hereafter I hope you will remember, that if I do not write to you very often, it is only because I have not a moment of spare time.
I have lately been much pleased again to learn by your last Letter to your Mother; the handsome compliment that you received from Mr Gould; and I hope that whenever he praises you, it will be a new inducement to you to deserve his good opinion by your faithful application to your studies.
Give my love to your brother John, and my kindest respects to Dr: and Mrs Welsh; and to your good friend Miss Harriet. I hope you will make yourself as agreeable to them by your respectful behaviour, as to Mr Gould by your assiduity to your studies.
From your Affectionate father.
John Quincy Adams.
MHi: Adams Papers.