Adams Papers

From John Adams to Joseph Palmer, 20 February 1777

To Joseph Palmer

Baltimore Feb. 20. 1777

Dr sir

Yesterday, I had the Pleasure of yours of Jany. 28.1 I am rejoiced to hear of the Measures taken by our state to raise their Battalions and to tax an hundred Thousand Pounds. Congress have been upon the subject of regulating the Prices of Labour and Provisions. I shall inclose you, what they have done.2

Are not these mere temporary Expedients and palliative Remedies. We must aim at a radical Cure.

The success of our Cause appears to me to depend entirely, (under God,) on our Supporting the Credit of our Currency. This must be done at all Events but cannot be done long by regulating Prices. We must cease emitting. We must borrow. And We must import if possible a Fund of Gold and Silver to redeem the Bills as they become payable. Pray write me your Thoughts upon this subject. I wish I had Time to enlarge.

RC (NN:Myers Coll.); addressed: “The Hon. Joseph Palmer Esqr Braintree, Massa. Bay.”

1Adams Papers; not printed above.

2Enclosure not found. On 15 Feb., in response to a report from the committee appointed to consider the action of the four New England states on regulation of prices and wages, the congress urged similar conventions for the states of New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Delaware, Maryland, and Virginia and for the states of North Carolina, South Carolina, and Georgia. It proposed that the first group meet on 17 March at York, Penna., the second at Charleston on 5 May (JCC description begins Worthington C. Ford and others, eds., Journals of the Continental Congress, 1774–1789, Washington, 1904–1937; 34 vols. description ends , 7:124–125).

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