Adams Papers

Charles Adams to John Adams, 8 January 1794

Charles Adams to John Adams

New York Jany 8th 1794

My Dear Father

Your letter inclosing the Pamphlet, came very safe to hand.1 I thank you, for your kindness. The Mails between this City and Philadelphia are very safe and secure. I have never heard of any accident happening to anything sent by this conveyance. Many of the communications published in this pamphlet have already appeared in our papers You know Sir that it is an idea cherished by many that a Republic should have no secrets. This doctrine carried to its full extent will no doubt lead us into some disagreable scrapes but I also think that we must pay the price of experience for all the wisdom we are likely to obtain. You letter I transcribed and gave in to the Printers of the Minerva I have taken such precautions that no person can know from whence it came. I gave it in the evening before last, it has not yet appeared. Whether there is anything in it which does not suit their palates I cannot say but I am sure there are truths which ought to be told and which ought to be regarded by Americans. Please to give my Love to Thomas and beleive me your affectionate son

Charles Adams

We are told that Genl Knox will resign. where is the man who can, and will supply his place?

RC (Adams Papers).

1On 5 Jan. JA wrote to CA enclosing a copy of the pamphlet The Correspondence between Citizen Genet, Minister of the French Republic to the United States of North America, and the Officers of the Federal Government, Phila., 1794, Evans, description begins Charles Evans and others, American Bibliography: A Chronological Dictionary of All Books, Pamphlets and Periodical Publications Printed in the United States of America [1639–1800], Chicago and Worcester, 1903–1959; 14 vols. description ends No. 47056. JA also expressed his reservations about such a publication: “I am at a loss to conjecture what will be the immediate Effects as well as remote Consequences, of committing to the Press, in this manner all our Negotiations with foreign Powers. It is so very opposite to every Practice that I was acquainted with or ever read or heard of in the Course of ten years Employment in diplomatic Services, that I shuddered at the first Idea of it” (MHi:Seymour Coll.). JA may have previously sent the same pamphlet to AA; see JA to AA, 6 Jan., and note 3, above.

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