November 13

Snowed this morning; there's about three inches of snow on the ground tonight; left James Burnham's at 9 o'clock a. m. in a snowstorm; arrived at Barre just in season for William Old's funeral; have attended the funeral this afternoon at the Universalist Church of Lester Tilden. Captain Albert Dodge called this afternoon; has stopped snowing.

Friday, November 13th, Boulogne.—We have been all day in Park Lane Siding among the trains, in pouring wet and slush. I amused myself with a pot of white paint and a forceps and wool for a brush, painting the numbers on both ends of the coaches inside, all down the train; you can't see the chalk marks at night.

This unprecedented four days' rest and nights in bed is doing us all a power of good; we have books and mending and various occupations.

November 13, 1862

Yesterday and to-day I have been fixing to get away from here and join the regiment. Captain Wooden's mother from Pine Plains came in to-day and I am full of home news. I kept her answering questions as long as she staid. Dr. Andrus says I must not think of going yet, but if I get a chance I'll show him. Doctors don't know it all. I have had such good care and such nice warm quarters I am really myself again, only not quite as strong as I was once. My clothes don't fit very close yet, and if the looking-glass in the ward-room is correct I have had something that has made me look rather slim.

November Thirteenth

In the summer of 1864, in consequence of certain information communicated to me by the Surgeon-general of the Confederate States as to the deficiency of medicines, I offered to make purchases of medicines from the United States authorities, to be used exclusively for the relief of Federal prisoners. I offered to pay gold, cotton, or tobacco for them, and even two or three prices, if required. At the same time I gave assurances that the medicines would be used exclusively in the treatment of Federal prisoners; and moreover agreed, on behalf of the Confederate States, if it was insisted on, that such medicines might be brought into the Confederate lines by the United States surgeons, and dispensed by them.

R. R. Stevenson

 

Texas declares her independence of Mexico, 1835

 

 

November 13, 1863

Friday. We were up bright and early so Keese and his recruits could catch the first train out. After that we went into our tent to talk over matters. This just staying here with nothing to do but think brought to mind many things we had not thought of for a long time. I told Smith what Ike Brownell said just before he died. "That if he had the power to do so he would start North with every man who wanted to go, and as fast as he passed over four feet of ground he would sink it." Matt said that expressed his sentiments exactly.

At noon the A. G. Brown arrived from Newtown and reported being fired on between here and Franklin. From the way she was barricaded with cotton bales about the pilot house and from the bullet holes through it, they must have had an exciting time. Lieutenant Reynolds before he left had got hold of a pony, but as he could not take him with him, told me to sell or give him away. I found plenty of buyers but they had no money, so I let him munch government hay until to-day, when I saddled up and started for a trade. I found a sutler a little way out of town who offered to buy if I would take it in trade. I made a rap with him, getting twenty papers of tobacco, twenty-five cigars, a pound of butter, a box of shoe blacking and a brush, and a glass of beer. That was the best I could do and it took me a long time to do that. Matt thought I made a good trade, and I hope Reynolds will think so too. A couple of sergeants from Colonel Tarbell's headquarters came in at night and we had a euchre party.

253. John Adams

Boston, 13 November, 1779.

My dearest Friend,—I have just sent Mr. Thaxter, Johnny, and Stevens, with the things, on board. I shall go with Charles at four o'clock. It is now three. I have seen the captain and the navy board, etc. It is proposed to sail to-morrow; perhaps, however, it may not be till next day.[207] Mr. Dana [208] will come on board at nine to-morrow. Mr. Hancock has sent me a card to invite me to go on board with him in the castle barge. Don't make many words of this. Your aunt has given me a barrel of cranberries. I shall make a good use of them, I hope.

Let me entreat you to keep up your spirits and throw off cares as much as possible. Love to Abby and Tommy. We shall yet be happy, I hope, and pray, and I don't doubt it. I shall have vexations enough, as usual. You will have anxiety and tenderness enough, as usual. Pray strive not to have too much. I will write by every opportunity I can get.

Yours ever, ever yours,     John Adams.

Footnotes:

[207]Mr. Adams had reached home on the 2d of August, in the Sensible. He was now ordered abroad again under a new commission, in the same vessel, then on her return to France. He took two sons with him.

[208]Francis Dana accompanied Mr. Adams as Secretary of Legation.

November 13

November 13, 1868.--I am reading part of two books by Charles Secrétan [Footnote: Charles Secrétan, a Lausanne professor, the friend of Vinet, born 1819. He published "Leçons sur la Philosophie de Leibnitz," "Philosophie de la Liberté," "La Raison et le Christianisme," etc.] "Recherches sur la Méthode," 1857; "Précis élémentaire de Philosophie," 1868. The philosophy of Secrétan is the philosophy of Christianity, considered as the one true religion. Subordination of nature to intelligence, of intelligence to will, and of will to dogmatic faith--such is its general framework. Unfortunately there are no signs of critical, or comparative, or historical study in it, and as an apologetic--in which satire is curiously mingled with glorification of the religion of love--it leaves upon one an impression of parti pris. A philosophy of religion, apart from the comparative science of religions, and apart also from a disinterested and general philosophy of history, must always be more or less arbitrary and factitious. It is only pseudo-scientific, this reduction of human life to three spheres--industry, law, and religion. The author seems to me to possess a vigorous and profound mind, rather than a free mind. Not only is he dogmatic, but he dogmatizes in favor of a given religion, to which his whole allegiance is pledged. Besides, Christianity being an X which each church defines in its own way, the author takes the same liberty, and defines the X in his way; so that he is at once too free and not free enough; too free in respect to historical Christianity, not free enough in respect to Christianity as a particular church. He does not satisfy the believing Anglican, Lutheran, Reformed Churchman, or Catholic; and he does not satisfy the freethinker. This Schellingian type of speculation, which consists in logically deducing a particular religion--that is to say, in making philosophy the servant of Christian theology--is a legacy from the Middle Ages.

After belief comes judgment; but a believer is not a judge. A fish lives in the ocean, but it cannot see all around it; it cannot take a view of the whole; therefore it cannot judge what the ocean is. In order to understand Christianity we must put it in its historical place, in its proper framework; we must regard it as a part of the religious development of humanity, and so judge it, not from a Christian point of view, but from a human point of view, sine ira nec studio.

280. Abigail Adams

13 November, 1782.

My dearest Friend,—I have lived to see the close of the third year of our separation. This is a melancholy anniversary to me, and many tender scenes arise in my mind upon the recollection. I feel unable to sustain even the idea that it will be half that period ere we meet again. Life is too short to have the dearest of its enjoyments curtailed; the social feelings grow callous by disuse, and lose that pliancy of affection which sweetens the cup of life as we drink it. The rational pleasures of friendship and society, and the still more refined sensations of which delicate minds only are susceptible, like the tender blossoms, when the rude northern blasts assail them, shrink within and collect themselves together, deprived of the all-cheering and beamy influence of the sun. The blossom falls and the fruit withers and decays; but here the similitude fails, for, though lost for the present, the season returns, the tree vegetates anew, and the blossom again puts forth.

But, alas! with me, those days which are past are gone forever, and time is hastening on that period when I must fall to rise no more until mortality shall put on immortality, and we shall meet again, pure and disembodied spirits. Could we live to the age of the antediluvians, we might better support this separation; but, when threescore years and ten circumscribe the life of man, how painful is the idea that, of that short space, only a few years of social happiness are our allotted portion.

Perhaps I make you unhappy. No. You will enter with a soothing tenderness into my feelings. I see in your eyes the emotions of your heart, and hear the sigh that is wafted across the Atlantic to the bosom of Portia. But the philosopher and the statesman stifles these emotions, and regains a firmness which arrests my pen in my hand.

25 November.

I last evening received a line from Boston to hasten my letter down or I should again lose an opportunity of conveyance. I was most unfortunate by the Firebrand's  sailing and leaving all my letters behind. A storm prevented my sending on the day appointed, and she sailed by sunrise the next morning. Though my letters were in town by nine o'clock, they missed. I know, if she arrive, how disappointed you will feel.

I received from France by the Alexander  yours, bearing no date, but, by the contents, written about the same time with those I received by Mr. Guild. Shall I return the compliment, and tell you in a poetical style,—

"Should at my feet the world's great master fall,Himself, his world, his throne, I'd scorn them all"?

No. Give me the man I love; you are neither of an age or temper to be allured by the splendor of a Court or the smiles of princesses. I never suffered an uneasy sensation on that account. I know I have a right to your whole heart, because my own never knew another lord; and such is my confidence in you, that if you were not withheld by the strongest of all obligations, those of a moral nature, your honor would not suffer you to abuse my confidence.

But whither am I rambling? We have not anything in the political way worth noticing. The fleet of our allies still remains with us.

Who is there left that will sacrifice as others have done; Portia, I think, stands alone, alas, in more senses than one. This vessel will convey to you the packets designed for the Firebrand. I hope, unimportant as they are, they will not be lost.

Shall I close here, without a word of my voyage? I believe it is best to wait a reply, before I say anything further. Our friends desire me to remember them to you. Your daughter, your image, your superscription, desires to be affectionately remembered to you. Oh, how many of the sweet domestic joys do you lose by this separation from your family. I have the satisfaction of seeing my children thus far in life behaving with credit and honor. God grant the pleasing prospect may never meet with an alloy, and return to me the dear partner of my early years, rewarded for his past sacrifices by the consciousness of having been extensively useful, not having lived to himself alone; and may the approving voice of his country crown his later days in peaceful retirement, in the affectionate bosom of

Portia.