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Know all Men by these Presents, that We John Adams of Quincy in the County of Norfolk and Commonwealth of Massachusetts, Esquire, and Abigail Adams his Wife, In consideration of one Dollar to each of us paid by John Quincy Adams of Boston in the County of Suffolk & Commonwealth of Massachusetts aforesaid Esquire, the Receipt whereof We do hereby acknowledge and for diverse other good and...
The very respectful, affectionate, and obliging address, which has been presented to me by the President of the Senate and Speaker of the House of Representatives, by your order, has awakened all my sensibility, and demands my most grateful acknowledgments. As the various testimonials of the approbation and affection of my fellow-citizens of Massachusetts, which have been indulged to me from...
Had I really been disgusted and mortified at my Treatment by Congress which in fact I was not, but was Satisfied as Soon as it was explained to me, the mortification would have been more than compensated by the Commissions I received on the fourth of November, 1779 unquestionably the more confidential Commissions that Congress had ever issued. The Commission to General Washington as Commander...
I have never doubted, that America would be added to the vast Catalogue of Nations, who would not be Saved by Precepts nor Examples. Nothing but a ballanced Government can Save any nation from the Tyranny of the many the few or the one, and no Nation ever was long united in understanding or preserving a ballance. England has preserved it longer than any nation ever did before, and England but...
Inclosed you will find a phillipic of our angry, pevish, fretful Prophet Jonah. His anger is his talent. When he gives a loose to that passion which he always does in every thing he produces something smart, pert, and malignant, which pleases the malignaty of the vulgar. But Phillipics are not the highest style of politicks. I cannot think Demosthenes and Cicero in the highest grade of...
Your favour of March 30th I received last Evening. The Subject of it is of great importance I have been absent from my Country and my home for So great a part of the last two and thirty Years, that I have never had an opportunity to be intimately Acquainted with the Affairs of the University or the Characters of the Gentlemen who have the immediate or mediate Government of it. This I have seen...
I have recieved your favour of February 23rd and thank you for the friendly as well as the complimentary sentiments expressed in it It has been now and then my fortune in the course of a long life, though not frequently to receive a compliment. yours is a pleasant one; and as an instance of adversity seldom comes alone, so I have observed that an instance of prosperity is seldom quite...
It has been often said, and as often denied, that there are men in this country attached to democracy, simple democracy—to a government in every State, of a single assembly of Representatives, without a Senate and without a Governor; to a government of the nation in a Congress of Delegates in one House, without a Senate and without a President. The charge is supported by the declarations of...
I acknowledge with Sincere pleasure, the Receipt of a handsome and a friendly letter from you, of the 14th. of this month: and congratulate you on your marriage into a connection, abounding in oppulence, Influence and Talents. The news of this Event gave me more pleasure, than I should have received from hearing of your, election into any legislature, or appointment, to any office under any...
On the evening of the 18, a few minutes after my Arrival at this place commenced a violent Equinoxtial Gale of Wind, accompanied with a flood of rain, from the North East, which has continued with very Short intervals to this day and confined me to my house. This is So old fashioned a storm that I begin to hope that nature is returning to her old good nature and good humour and is substituting...
You make me very happy when you Say, that you agree with me upon the Subject of the Perfectibility of Man. Let every Man endeavor to amend and improve one and We Shall find ourselves in the right Road to all the Perfection We are capable of: but this rule Should by no means exclude our utmost exertions to amend and improve others, and in every Way and by all means in our Power to ameliorate...
It is a long time, since I had the pleasure to write to you: but this omission has arisen from engagements in public Business, which left me no time for any Attention to my private Affairs. It is now time for me to think of my own little concerns, and this Letter is to inform you, that I have engaged my worthy Son John Quincy Adams, late Minister Plenipotentiary from the United States to the...
Review Propositions for amending the Constitution of the United States, Submitted by Mr Hillhouse to the Senate, on the twelfth day of April 1808, with his explanatory Remarks. In Pages five and Six, Mr Hillhouse defines his Terms, Monarchy, Aristocracy, Democracy, Federalists and Republicans. To his Idea of Aristocracy alone, Shall We make any objection, at present: but before We State our...
I am much pleased with the temper and spirit of your Letter of February 28th: The subjects of your future Examination, are judiciously chosen and I hope you will acquit yourself to your own satisfaction as well as that of your Instructor’s. I know of no Characteristic of a weak head a dull discernment and superficial reflection more remarkable than the opinion you mention of many young Men who...
This morning I had the pleasure of receiving your favour of the 5th. of this month, with its important enclosures. I cannot accuse my Countrymen with ingratitude. They feel their obligations with ardent sensibility, whenever and wherever they see them. They sometimes from a variety of causes overlook them where they ought to be seen, and sometimes are made to believe they see them where they...
Your favour of the fifteenth is received. In a cornfield, which I had manured with seaweed and Marsh mud, in a compost with other materials, I found, last fall, two plants of an uncommon Appearance which I Suspected to be the Kali: because—they resembled the descriptions of it which I had read in the Dictionary of natural History and in the Œconomical Dictionary, both of which quote Monsieur...
I have always believed that the Afra Avis, was the Guinea Hen, but have lately heard it was the Turkey. You say “Alass poor Europe” – I say “ alass poor human nature.” I am as weary, as my friend the Abby Raynall, with contemplating the Stupidity of one part of Man kind and the Villany of the other: but I cannot say with him, if they are never to be wiser and better may they be annihilated....
De la Marre, tells us, that in the North of Holland they make use of Fucus to support their Dikes. In other places, they employ these plants to fertilize their lands. on Several of the french Coasts of the ocean, they call "Cluys" those of these plants which the Sea casts upon the Shore; and Vraicq, those which they go and pull off from the rocks, in the months of January and February, an...
In order to give you all the Authentic Documents necessary to explain the Remarks I have made upon your History, I have omitted to give you Copies of one or two Commissions which I intended to have transcribed in their Places. One of them is in these Words. The United States of America in Congress assembled To all to whom these Presents Shall come Send Greeting. Whereas these United States,...
Mr: Samuel Adams was called a Maltster because he kept a Malt-house; but he was a Gentleman of liberal Education; a Legislator and a Magistrate. He was the father of the late Governor Adams and the Son of John Adams, a Merchant in Boston, who was brother of my Grandfather. Mrs: Elizabeth Adams, Widow of the late Governor Adams still lives in Boston. The Governor left but one child, a daughter,...
I received yours of the 4th with double pleasure occasioned, by the Encouragement you give me to hope that I shall See you Soon at this chosen spot. There are indeed in this Country, all the Characters and humours that you describe, and there will be such for many years to come, which will keep alive the extravagant Spirit of democracy longer than it would live of itself. Exaggerations of...
I have received the letter you did me the honor to write me on the 16 Oct together with your “considerations on the substance of the sun.” This pamphlet I shall transmit to Dr Lathrop of Boston, the librarian of the society, to be laid before them at their next assembly. In the mean time, I thank you for the pleasure you have given me of reading it. I will venture to say it contains much...
You were a Letter in my debt, when you wrote yours of March 17th but you did not know it. I wrote you Some months ago, and asked the favour of you to inform me, what is the Christian Name the Place of Residence, and the present Titles of our Friend Mr De Gyselaer, formerly Pensionary of Dort. I had particular reasons for this Inquiry which you would not disapprove, though I am not at present...
I have, after so long a time, been favored with a loan of four Volumes of Captain Joseph Ingraham’s Journals of his voyage to the North West Coast of America, round Cape Horn, in the Brigantine Hope of Seventy Tons burthen. He sailed from Boston on the 16th. of September 1790. In these he often Speaks of a voyage he made the year or two before, in the Columbia, and refers to his Journal of it....
I have received your favour of the fifteenth of this Month and read it with pleasure; and my Son, who happened to be with me, on a visit, from Boston where he resides read the part of it addressed to him, with apparent Satisfaction. on his return from Washington he presented me, in your name with that fine American Staff which I call “My Guest,” for which I give you a thousand Thanks. It not...
Your Letter of the tenth, like all others from your pen, notwithstanding all your apologies, was a cordial to my Spirit. I must confess to you, that the data, upon which you reason from the Prophecies concerning the future amelioration of the condition of mankind, are too obscure and uncertain, to authorize us to build any System upon them for the conduct of Nations—It is well to understand as...
It has been often Said, and as often as denied, that there are Men in this Country attached to Democracy. Simple Democracy: to a Government in every State, of a Single Assembly of Representatives, without a Senate and without a Governor; to a Government of the Nation in a Congress of Delegates in one House without a Senate and without a President. The Charge is Supported by the Declarations of...
(To be added to those on Sea Weeds) If the gentleman from the Isle of Fromme mentioned in your Letter of the Eighth give you a Portugese Man of War, I beg you to keep it and not present it to me as you generously propose. I have no use for it and no incentive to preserve it. I only want to know whether it has a distinguishable animal in it. If you part with it at all I hope you will give it to...
I have received from Mr Pichon, your favour of the 10th. of January, and, while I feel my obligations to you for your kind Remembrance of me, I very heartily rejoice with you, in your return to your native Country. The new Superintendant of the commercial relations between France and the United States, will, I presume be very well received here, and the better by most men for the part he acted...
I know not whether I shall make you smile or weep, excite your ridicule or pity or contempt when I reveal to you the mistery of my long delay to answer your last Letters. But before I unriddle that unusual negligence, I must say a few words concerning our Friend Whartons Attachment to Prophecies and his habit of applying them to passing events. I have no objection to the Study, but I am aware...
I owe you a thousand thanks, to speak in the good old English form of civility, for the Speech and the documents. You are greatly to be pitied, I mean all of you, of all parties, for I see you must labour very hard and with much anxiety, without the smallest hope, that I can discern of preserving yourselves and us the people from very dull times. If you continue the Embargo the times will be...
321784 [i.e. 1804]. Aug. (Adams Papers)
The last Week in August We ploughed a ditch and brought the Earth into the Yard and 32 loads of Mud from the Cove.
In my last I attempted to prove that Government and Society are inseperable from each other. In the case that was stated the Government of the Mother over her Infant was proved to be coeval with the first Act of Society or Sociability between them. Without the Government of the Mother there could have been no Connection or Intercourse between them; and the Child must have perished in the first...
I have received the letter you did me the honor to write me on the 20 Oct and have communicated its melancholly contents to the mother and other relations of the deceased Mr. William Smith. They all sympathize with you in your affliction.—I know nothing of Mr Smiths affairs and I cannot learn that any of his relations are better acquainted with them. They desire that their respects may be...
This day I recd your favour of the 15 of last month you and I are in the same predicament. You are buried and forgotten as you Say in the Western Wilderness, and I am buried and forgotten at Mount Wollaston: But I believe you are happier than you were when bustling in Holland, and I am very Sure I have been happier for these four years passed than I ever was in any four of forty years before...
Handsome Bradford, of thy City, allarmed me, the other day at our Athenaeum in Boston, by telling me, that Dr Rushes Business had amazingly encreased and was encreasing. Knowing thine Ardor in thy Profession, I was apprehensive that thy Zeal for the Health of the Sick would Soon eat thee Up, and consequently that thine Ether would escape from this Colluvies of Humanity to the Regions of...
I rejoice to find by your Letter of the 26. and by my Sons Conversation, that his commencement of a residence at Cambridge has been agreable to you and to him. He could not in his present Circumstances have been So hapily situated as he is. Two such Men as Dr Waterhouse and J. Q. Adams will find in the society of each other, and in the sciences and Litterature an inexhaustible fund of...
Yesterday I received from the Post Office your obliging Letter of the Sixth of this month. It is not necessary for me to recurr to my Letter Books, and examine the few Letters I wrote to General Washington, before I assure you, that I Shalt take no offence at your inserting in your History, parts or the whole of them. They were written under great Agitation of Mind, at a time when a cruel...
I have recd yours of Aug. 1802. I agree with you that “the deadly infection has not Spread thro every Limb.” But what Shall We Say when Such a Writer as Mr Callender, can write down the Administration of Washington, write up an administration of Jefferson and then write it down again. The Editors of Newspapers, have no Check, and yet have Power to make and Unmake Characters, at their Will; to...
I receive very kindly your obliging letter of the 15th. of this month. Ever since my return from Europe, where I had resided ten years and could not be fully informed of the state of affairs in my own Country, I have been constantly anxious and alarmed at the intemperance of party spirit and the unbounded license of our presses. In the same view I could not but lament some things, which have...
I received on Saturday your favor of the 25—had before received the copy of your oration, which you mention in it and since that have received the other that you sent first—for all these favors I thank you. The brochure which contains much valuable matter I have read with a lively interest and high pleasure—I wish I had patience and leisure however to make a few friendly remarks—But as I have...
I duly received your favor of April 9 & am much gratified with that affectionate attachment, which you express for me. The mode you have adopted to mark your regard is very flattering. All that I can say to you upon this occasion is, God bless the brave boy to whom you have given the name of MHi : Adams Family Papers, Letterbooks.
“Pride of Talents and much Ambition were undoubtedly combined in the Character of the President, who immediately Succeeded General Washington” and these are represented as the most prominent features of his Character. Vol. 3. p. 393. Permit me Madam to ask the favour of you, to point out the Act or Word, which appeared to you to evince this Pride of Talents. I know not that I ever felt any...
I want to write an Essay.—Whom Shall I choose for a Model?—Plutarch, old Montaigne, Lord Bacon, Addison, Johnson, or Franklin? The last, if he had devoted his Life to the Study might have equalled Montaine in Essays or La Fontaine in Fables: for he was fitter more fitted for either or both than to conduct a Nation like Prony or Colbert. I am however too round about, to imitate the close,...
The Mail of yesterday brought, me, the Documents and in the Evening I received from Boston your favour of the 14th. By the Journals of the Senate I see, that you have Work enough, to excuse you from private Correspondences. By all that I read in the Documents, Journals, and Newspapers, it seems to me that the reigning Principle is to crouch to france & Spain and be very terrible to Britain....
I am under a great obligation to you for the two volumes of the your American Annals, and am ashamed that I have not acknowledged long ago the Receipt of the first of them They are a work of great Labour, care and Industry, and the Execution of the plan appears to me to be as ingenious as it is judicious The Style is Elegant as well as clear and concise. With great satisfaction I observe that...
I duly recd your favour of the 21. Sept.—I Sent you two pretty large Packetts the first of Six sheets of Paper, another of five or Six more, and have written two or three Short Letters, besides. You have acknowledged the receipt of the first Packet, but the Second large one you have not mentioned. It related to the Kali and the Medusa &c. &c. I only wish to know that you have it. I return with...
I have not yet acknowledged the Receipt of yours of 25. feb. I think you right in not noticing Paine, and in present Circumstances in not disputing with Callender. I remarked the Port folio N 2, and was much pleased. I Suspected the hand.—I have heard, that an Intrigue against Washington did exist in the latter End of 1777 and beginning of 1778, but know nothing of it.—I obtained leave of...
Colonel Humphreys and Col Tudor did me the honor of a Visit on Saturday and We had much Conversation about you, which made me feel as if I was Sitting at my Fire Side among my Children whom I had not found together for many Years. I was highly rejoiced to hear of your health, and the honor Esteem and respect which the Men of Connecticutt, which the Men of Connecticutt, have at length the Sense...
You have puzzled and confounded me, by your Letter of the 3 of Aug.—After allarming me with Some Suggestions or Suspicions of Infidelity in the Post office you Say “I Suppose the Crime is perpetrated in Massachusetts. Look at the inclosed Sealing. it is from you?” I thought this gave me a Right and made it my duty to open it, and Lo! a lovely Letter from your amiable Daughter to your worthy...