Adams Papers
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Cotton Tufts to Abigail Adams, 31 March 1798

Cotton Tufts to Abigail Adams

Weymouth March. 31. 1798

Dear Madm.

In my last I enclosed a rough Plan of the proposed Addition to the Wood House, that Plan will exhibit to You an Idea of the lower Room; since then I have found, that it will not be much more expensive, to take the Roof off from the Wood house & Library and erect a new one over them, than to proceed in the Way that was projected.1 I have accordingly orderd it to be framd in this Way; upon this plan You will have 4 upright Chambers and if You are disposed to have the Library in one of them or to throw two of the Chambers into one Room for that Purpose, it may be done and in either Case, You may have a Way to it from the outside if You should chuse it or if You mean to devote it entirely to a Farm House, it will render it much more convenient and give You sufficient Room.

I do not know what will become of S. Bass if You do not employ him, he is so attach’d to the Place, that he will not enjoy himself if he is not at Work for You—2 what must I do and what Wages must I give them if hired— Soule is on the Farm at 200 Dollars for 8 Months, He did not incline to engage for the Year—

Mr. Lane of Hingham will paint the setting Room Chamber &C Next Week—3 The Season past has been wet & Cold, scarce any drying Weather till within Two or three Days, We shall now push the Business of the Farm, Building and other matters, I have orderd a Boat to Boston to bring all the Necessaries for the Building not already provided, together with 100 Bushells of Oates which will be on the Spot next Week—

Yours of the 18th. Inst. I recd. with 200 Dr. enclosed— I have thought whether it would not be best to purchase fundd. Stock at Philadelphia as I have found for sometime past that it has been sold (6 pr. Ct. Stock) 8d & 10d £ cheaper than at Boston this might be done by Brisler who might get it transferd to the office of Nath. Appleton Esq, it might be purchased in my Name or Brislers—4

I have a strong Inclination to touch upon Politics but my trembling Hands tell me I must close— Mrs. Tufts is as well as her Fatigues & Anxiety of Mind will permit— Sukey I expect will Soon be verging to a close of her Distress, if this warm weather continues

Adieu / Yr. Affecte. Frend

C. T—5

RC (Adams Papers); internal address: “Mrs. Abigail Adams”; endorsed: “Dr Tufts.” Dft (Adams Papers).

1This letter has not been found. In her reply of 16 April, AA reported that the letter and plan had not arrived but that even without them she approved Tufts’ proposal for the construction on the outbuilding. She also suggested that entry to the library be accessible from the exterior so as not to disrupt the rest of the house and asked that Tufts provide an estimate of the total cost for the project, enclosing $100 toward the balance (Adams Papers).

2Tufts was probably referring to Joseph Bass, a longstanding Adams tenant who was by this time 75 years of age and about whom AA commented, “The old man is usefull” (vol. 8:334, 335; AA to Tufts, 16 April, Adams Papers).

3Likely Rufus Lane (1758–1801), a painter and glazier who lived on South Street in Hingham (History of Hingham description begins History of the Town of Hingham, Massachusetts, Hingham, 1893; 3 vols. in 4. description ends , 2:419).

4This letter has not been found, and it is unclear where the funds were ultimately invested. For Tufts’ earlier investments on AA’s behalf, see vol. 9:xiii–xiv, 197.

5Tufts also wrote to AA on 20 March inquiring about her plans to keep a dairy at their farm and what should be done with the cheese and butter (Adams Papers).

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