July 24

Have been in camp resting all day. Adjutant Lyman is fixing up the pay rolls. I can't find my valise; guess it's lost. We had inspection at 10 a. m.; cloudy; looks like rain.

July Twenty-Fourth

Ante-bellum Master: “Julius, you rascal, if this happens again we'll have to part.”

“La, Marse Phil, whar you gwine?”

 

 

54. John Adams

24 July, 1775.

It is now almost three months since I left you, in every part of which, my anxiety about you and the children, as well as our country, has been extreme. The business I have had upon my mind has been as great and important as can be entrusted to man, and the difficulty and intricacy of it prodigious. When fifty or sixty men have a Constitution to form for a great empire, at the same time that they have a country of fifteen hundred miles in extent to fortify, millions to arm and train, a naval power to begin, an extensive commerce to regulate, numerous tribes of Indians to negotiate with, a standing army of twenty-seven thousand men to raise, pay, victual, and officer, I really shall pity those fifty or sixty men. I must see you erelong. Rice has written me a very good letter. So has Thaxter, for which I thank them both. Love to the children.

J. A.

P. S.—I wish I had given you a complete history, from the beginning to the end of the journey, of the behavior of my compatriots. No mortal tale can equal it. I will tell you in future, but you shall keep it secret. The fidgets, the whims, the caprice, the vanity, the superstition, the inability of some of us is enough to [89]——

Yours.

Footnotes:

[89]This letter, with one of the same date to James Warren, was intercepted and published by the British. Of its effect on the position of the writer, some account has been given elsewhere. Works of John Adams, Vol. I. pp. 180, 181.