William Stephens Smith to Abigail Adams Smith
Falmouth, August 22d, 1787.
I wrote you, my love, the first thing I did after my landing here on the 20th;1 I then proposed setting off from this, yesterday or this morning; but I am in check. I was yesterday at 4 o’clock, visited by an ague and fever, which shook and warmed me alternately pretty tolerably; this day I am free from it, and with the advice of a very good doctor who attends me, I hope soon to be allowed to put myself in motion towards one who possesses all my affections and merits all my love. The acquaintance which I formed in this place when I arrived from America,2 and the letters of introduction which I brought from Lisbon, insure me every civility and respect I can wish. I am visited and attended in a very particular manner, and want for nothing but to be enabled to bid them farewell, and hasten to you. It is a painful detention to be so near, and upon the same island, and not be able to advance. You must not write, my friend, for I am in hopes before this reaches you to be on my way to you. I shall pass through Exeter, Taunton, Bath, Marlborough, &c., as being the best road—having the best horses and accommodations—for a few days longer, and this painful separation I hope will be at an end.
W. S. S.
MS not found. Printed from AA2, Jour. and Corr. description begins Journal and Correspondence of Miss Adams, Daughter of John Adams,... Edited by Her Daughter [Caroline Amelia (Smith) de Windt], New York and London, 1841–; 3 vols. description ends , 1:200–201.
1. See AA2, Jour. and Corr. description begins Journal and Correspondence of Miss Adams, Daughter of John Adams,... Edited by Her Daughter [Caroline Amelia (Smith) de Windt], New York and London, 1841–; 3 vols. description ends , 1:199–200.
2. WSS had traveled through Falmouth on his way to London to take up his appointment as secretary to the U.S. legation in May 1785 (Roof, Smith and Lady description begins Katharine Metcalf Roof, Colonel William Smith and Lady: The Romance of Washington’s Aide and Young Abigail Adams, Boston, 1929. description ends , p. 90).