Adams Papers

To John Adams from Cotton Tufts, 9 February 1801

Weymouth Feby. 9. 1801—

Dear Sr.

The wise & steady Administration of our national Government, for Twelve Years past, has not only render’d us respectable in the Eyes of Nations abroad, but has been productive of incalculable Advantages at Home—

If in any Instance foreign Nations have violated our Rights, they have had Conviction, that when Justice has requir’d it, We have had not only the Means, but Resolution to resent the Injury. ... The Neutrality which has been maintaind has been accompanied with the most unexampled commercial Enterprize and with unpararelled Success—It may with Truth be said of America at the close of the present Administration—America thou exhibitest a singular Phaenonemon in the World, in Twelve Years thou hast risen to a State of Grandeur & opulence, which in other Countries & Ages, has required a Century.——The Consideration of this must afford the most pleasing Reflections to the President in quitting the Helm of Government. From his acknowledg’d Merits & Services, it might have been presum’d, that He would still have been invited to lead and guide the People. But in a World governed by Passion rather than by Reason, Changes will arise and often grievous and afflictive to the true Lover of his Country—I have often thought that in the formation of Constitutions of Government, the Framers of them have never sufficiently contemplated the Force of human Passions, and their Effects upon Society.

What is before us, I know not; in common with my Countrymen I lament that we are reduced to such a Scituation as to have disagreable Apprehensions of approaching Evil. We are anxiously waiting for the Decision on the Treaty, the commercial part of the Community, notwithstanding their Uncertainty respecting it, are pushing on with great Zeal, Shipping Provision, Grain and the produce of other Countries to all Quarters of the Globe— Pork, Beef, Grain & Vessells have risen in their Price—.

I address’d the President in August last in Behalf of Turell Tufts Esq. Consul at Surrinam for an Appointment (if admissable) in Bourdeaux, Nants, Havor de Grace or L’Orient, should the Treaty be ratified. An Appointment as Consul to either of them, would be deem’d an Honor done to Him and his Friends—Our Winter hitherto has been very moderate, and unfavourable either for sledding or casting—We are dayly in Expectation of Mrs Adams Return to Quincy, although we have had no Account of Her having left Washington—I hope her Journey will be safe & prosperous——The Expectation of your returning early in the Spring prevents me from dilating on your domestic Concerns at present... In the mean Time,

With Sentiments of Respect Esteem & Freindship / I am—Yrs.

Cotton Tufts

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