Adams Papers

From Abigail Smith Adams to Sarah Manning Vaughan, 1800


My dear Madam

I fear you will think your kind and obliging Letter of May 19th miscarried upon its passage, or that I have been very negligent in the acknowledgment of it. it made a very circuitous route. I had left Philadelphia before its arrival and it followd after the President to Washington so that it was a long time before I had the pleasure of learning from it, that mr Vaughan, yourself and Family were in the enjoyment of Health & happiness, which I most sincerely wish may be continued to you. tho retired from the Scenes of the Gay & the dissipated part of the world, of which you have seen enough, the early habits you acquired <of> for the more durable and valuable literary pleasures are those which will entertain you in Rural retirement, and under the [volm] of nature more pleasing to your taste, you will be enabled scientifically

[]To Mark, How Spring the tended plants

How blows the beautious Grove

How nature paints her coulours how the bee

Sits on the bloom extracting liquid sweets”

by this means my dear madam your worthy partner will render much Service to the Country he has chosen for his assylum, and under a mild an equitable Government may live in peace with all men, sitting quietly under vines of his own Cultivation, having nothing to disturb or make him affraid. this too might have been the Lot of the Gentleman alluded to in your Letter, if he had not steped out of <the> those Scientific persuits which had given him a name and a Fame both in the old and new world unfortunately for him. He chose a State composed of a Hetergenious Mass from all nations, possessing very little of the true Genuine American Character, and falsly judging of All America by the Specimin <[. . .]> obtaind there, he commences Another Government reformer and public censure. No Man can form a just Character of a country from so partial a knowledge of it, nor can he judge of America who has not known N. England. I regret that he has renderd himself obnoxious to the most judicious part of our Country. I wish him more prudence. the <little> present <design done> from miss Vaughan I have received, and present her my thanks. It is both a Specimin of taste and elegance of execution. if mr Vaughan or you should visit Boston, I request you to make me a visit at Quincy where I shall reside the present Winter

MHi: Adams Papers.

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