Adams Papers
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Abigail Adams to John Quincy Adams, 25 May 1796

Abigail Adams to John Quincy Adams

Boston May 25 1796

my Dear son

I came into Town Yesterday with your Father, and was surprizd to find mr Gore upon the point of Sailing for England. I had lookt for him at Quincy before he went, but being himself Hurried and having but just returnd from Philadelphia, he had not Time to come out. Mrs Gore accompanies him.1 mr Tudor is also Passenger in the same vessel with many others from this place.

It will be needless to say any thing to you upon politicks as mr Gore can give You every information on that head, both as they Regard our National affairs, & of this particular State. Boston appears desirous of making ample attonement for its past folly and Rashness. the Representation of this Town you will learn is quite federal. Codman otis and your old Friend Cooper are of the Number.2

I wrote you a Day or two since by a vessel which saild last week. since the Date of that I have to acknowledge the Receit of yours March 30th

accept My thanks for the papers, and Books. O what a Tragedy!

by the repeated hints in Your Letters I am persuaded to believe … I will Speak out if you will not. it is one of the Miss Johnstones who has become Your Flame.3 have I not guest right? yet not a Lisp from any one but your self have I heard. You have Years sufficient to judge for yourself, and whom you call yours Shall be mine also. only weigh well. consider maturely of the most important action of Your Life.

our Friends in Town are all well. Your Father will write You soon. many vessels are up for England. I shall write to Thomas by a vessel going to Hamburgh. mr Gore will no Doubt hint to You, an event contemplated. Should it take place, and an other event also, You will have less reason to expect promotion than you now have. your reasons for being Satisfied with your situation at the Hague, and giving that mission a preference to others more elevated, are such as bespeak the man of Modesty, possesst of a high sense of what is Due to others.

My Love to Thomas. poor fellow how my Heart acks for his Sufferings. I hope he did not lose the use of his Limbs. I have not had a line from him since early in December4

your Brother & Sister were well when last I heard from them.

our Boston Friends desire to be rememberd to you. Mary Carter is married to a mr Cutts of Portsmouth, and Mary storer to a mr Johnstone of N York—5

I received a Letter from your Aunt Peabody. she writes in good Spirits, has a kind affectionate Husband, begs to be rememberd to you and your Brother, and thanks You most sincerely for your kindness to William. he conducts with much prudence and will get through colledge with the kind assistance of his Friends, the Friends of his Mother. his Fathers relations have never concernd themselves about him. adieu Young Johnstone was well yesterday. I shall see him to Day yours affectionately

A A.

RC (Adams Papers); endorsed by TBA: “Mrs: A Adams / 25 May 1796. / 13 July Recd: / 25 Do Ansd.” Tr (Adams Papers).

1For Christopher Gore’s assignment to the claims commission created by the Jay Treaty, see Joshua Johnson to JQA, 30 Sept., and note 4, below. He and his wife, Rebecca Payne Gore, for whom see vol. 6:377, sailed for London on the Minerva, Capt. Turner, on 25 May (New York Minerva, 28 May).

2John Codman Jr., Harrison Gray Otis, and Samuel Cooper were all elected representatives to the Mass. General Court on 11 May (Massachusetts Mercury, 13 May).

3Two of LCA’s sisters, Ann (Nancy, 1773–1810) and Carolina Virginia Marylanda (1777–1862), were also of marriageable age (LCA, D&A, description begins Diary and Autobiographical Writings of Louisa Catherine Adams, ed. Judith S. Graham and others, Cambridge, 2013; 2 vols. description ends 2:773).

4Of 1 Dec. 1795, above.

5Mary Carter (1766–1840), daughter of the wealthy Newburyport merchant Nathaniel Carter Sr., married Edward Cutts (1763–1824), a Portsmouth, N.H., merchant, on 17 April 1796. Four days later, Mary (Polly) Storer married Seth Johnson (1767–1802), partner in a New York mercantile house (JQA, Diary description begins Diary of John Quincy Adams, ed. David Grayson Allen, Robert J. Taylor, and others, Cambridge, 1981– . description ends , 2:287–288; Cecil Hampden Cutts Howard, comp., Genealogy of the Cutts Family in America, Albany, N.Y., 1892, p. 79, 540; The Manifesto Church: Records of the Church in Brattle Square, Boston, 1902, p. 178; Alexander Hamilton, The Law Practice of Alexander Hamilton: Documents and Commentary, ed. Julius Goebel Jr. and others, 5 vols., N.Y., 1964–1981, 5:12).

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