John Adams to Abigail Adams
Plymouth May Saturday 17721
I take an opportunity by Mr. Kent, to let you know that I am at Plymouth, and pretty well. Shall not go for Barnstable untill Monday.
There are now signs of a gathering Storm, so I shall make my self easy here for the Sabbath. I wish myself at Braintree. This wandering, itinerating Life grows more and more disagreable to me. I want to see my Wife and Children every Day, I want to see my Grass and Blossoms and Corn, &c. every Day. I want to see my Workmen, nay I almost want to go and see the Bosse Calfs’s as often as Charles2 does. But above all except the Wife and Children I want to see my Books.
None of these Amusements are to be had. The Company we have is not agreable to me. In Coll. Warren and his Lady3 I find Friends, Mr. Angier4 is very good, but farther than these, I have very little Pleasure in Conversation. Dont expect me, before Saturday.—Perhaps Mrs. Hutchinson may call upon you, in her Return to Boston, the later End of next Week or beginning of the Week after.
Pray let the People take Care of the Caterpillars. Let them go over and over, all the Trees, till there is not the appearance of a nest, or Worm left.
RC (Adams Papers); addressed: “For Mrs. Adams Braintree Pr. favr. of Mr Kent.”
1. Probably written on 23 May. The Superior Court session at Plymouth had begun on the 19th; that at Barnstable was to begin on the 26th.
2. Charles, second son and fourth child of JA and AA, had been born on 29 May 1770. See Adams Genealogy.
3. James and Mercy (Otis) Warren of Plymouth, for many years the warm friends and intimate correspondents of the Adamses. See DAB description begins Allen Johnson and Dumas Malone, eds., Dictionary of American Biography, New York, 1928–1936; 20 vols. plus index and supplements. description ends under both Warrens; also the letter immediately below, and Warren-Adams Letters description begins Warren-Adams Letters: Being Chiefly a Correspondence among John Adams, Samuel Adams, and James Warren (Massachusetts Historical Society, Collections, vols. 72–73), Boston, 1917–1925; 2 vols. description ends , passim.
4. Oakes Angier (1745–1786), Harvard 1764, of West Bridgewater, one of the earliest regular practitioners of law in Plymouth co. According to Nahum Mitchell, History of the Early Settlement of Bridgewater, Boston, 1840, p. 106, Angier had “read law with the elder President Adams,” and AA speaks of him to JA as “Your former pupil” (3 June 1776, below). Angier was admitted attorney in Plymouth Superior Court, May 1771, and barrister at Boston, Aug. 1773 (Superior Court of Judicature, Minute Books 94, 98). JA mentions him several times in a friendly way in his Diary. In his relatively few years of practice Angier amassed a large fortune, and the circumstances of the death and the terms of the will of this lawyer “indefatigable in his Proffession, possessed of great Qualities, and great Faults,” are discussed at length in a letter from Elizabeth (Smith) Shaw to her sister AA, 1–3 Nov. 1786 (Adams Papers), printed later in the present work.