Adams Papers

John Adams to Abigail Adams, 22 November 1798

John Adams to Abigail Adams

Van Tilsburys 3 miles from Princton
Thursday Evening
24 I believe [22] of Nov. 17981

My Dearest Friend

We Spent Sunday at Stanford at Webbs went to Meeting forenoon and afternon, and on Monday went to Dinner at East Chester. Tuesday in a Violent Snow storm went into New York, dined & Slept at Charles’s. Wednesday crossed the Ferry and went to Elizabeth Town. This day We came five and thirty miles to this Place. From New York our poor Horses have waded and dragged the Carriage through Snow banks and Mud, till I have dreaded their failure. They have Supported the fatigue however a mervaille and even Sloven as lean as a lath has brought along Frank in the Saddle very well. We have yet five and thirty miles to Phyladelphia. I hope to reach McElroys tomorrow and go into the City on Saturday. Mr Shaw has been very good and the Coachman and Footman or Horseman have done their duty with great Care and Fidelity.

I have heard nothing from you Since Mrs Smith left you, and I have Anxieties enough on your Account, as you may easily imagine.

I have no news from Brisler and know not the Condition of the House, but I shall alight at the Door on Saturday.

All Ideas of the Fever both at New York and Phyladelphia, are lost and nobody Speaks of it now.

We had Scarcely become warm at our Fireside, when Mr and Mrs Liston and Lord Henry Steuart came in travelling also to Phyladelphia.2 They used a Slay for the first time of their Lives to day. Very polite Inquiries after your health.

You cannot be thankful enough that you did not Attempt to come on.

Adieu, my Dear Friend— Make yourself as happy as you can: And take every possible care of your health.

Mr Shaw Sends his Duty. I am as / ever

J. A

RC (Adams Papers); internal address: “Mrs A.”; endorsed: “J A, Nov’br / 28th / 1798.”

1JA misdated this letter: 22 Nov. fell on a Thursday while the 24th was a Saturday.

2Sir Robert Liston and Henrietta Marchant Liston left Philadelphia in August to escape yellow fever. They spent three months touring New York and New England and left New York in late November on their return to Philadelphia. Accompanying them was Lord Henry Petty Stuart (1777–1809), who after completing his education served as Liston’s private secretary (The Travel Journal of Henrietta Marchant Liston: North America & Lower Canada, 1796–1800, ed. Louise V. North, Lanham, Md., 2014, p. 14, 15, 50, 51, 104; Bradford Perkins, “A Diplomat’s Wife in Philadelphia: Letters of Henrietta Liston, 1796–1800,” WMQ description begins William and Mary Quarterly. description ends , 11:619–621 [Oct. 1954]).

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