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the goodly fabric we have been rearing at the expence of so much time, blood, and treasure? and shall we at last become the victims of our own abominable lust of gain? Forbid it heaven! forbid it all, and every state in the union! by enacting and enforcing, efficatious laws for checking the growth of these monstrous evils, and restoring matters in some degree to the pristine state they were in at the commencement of the War. Our cause is noble, it is the cause of Mankind! and the danger to it springs from ourselves. Shall we slumber and sleep then while we should be punishing those miscreants who have brought these troubles upon us, and who are aiming to continue us in them? While we should be striving to fill our Battalions, and devising ways and means to appreciate the currency, on the credit of which every thing depends? I hope not, let vigorous measures be adopted, not to limit the price of articles, for this I conceive is inconsistent with the very nature. of things, and impracticable in itself, but to punish speculators, forestallers, and extortioners, and above all, to sink the money by heavy Taxes. To promote public and private oeconomy, encourage manufactures etca. Measure of this sort gone heartily into by the several states, will strike at once at the root of all our misfortunes, and give the coup-de-grace to British hope of subjugating this great Continent, either by their Arms or their Arts. The first as I have before observed they acknowledge is unequal to the task, the latter I am sure will be so if we are not lost to every thing that is good and virtuous.
A little time now, must unfold in some degree, the Enemy's designs. Whether the state of affairs in Europe will permit them to augment their Army with more than recruits for the Regiments now in America, and therewith attempt an active and vigorous campain, or whether with their Canadian and Florida force they will aid and abet the Indians in ravaging on our Western Frontier, while their shipping with detachments harrass (and if they mean to prosecute the predatory War threatned by Administration through their Commissioners) burn and destroy our Seacoast, or whether contrary to expectation they are more disposed to negotiate than to either, is more than I can determine. The latter will depend very much on their apprehensions of Spain, and
their own foreign alliances. At present we seem to be in a Chaos but this cannot last long, as I presume the ultimate determination of the British Court will be developed at the meeting of Parliament after the hollidays.
Mrs. Washington joins me in a tender of cordial wishes and best respects to Mrs. Warren. she would have done herself the pleasure of writing but the present conveyance by Cap. Gilman to Boston was sudden. I am, with sincere esteem and regard Dr. Sir. Yr. Most Obedt. Ser.
SAMUEL ADAMS TO JAMES WARREN
MY DEAR SIR, — Mr. Hodgdon forwarded to me your Letter of April. I thank you for the Concern you express for my Health. It is a Blessing which I have less enjoyd the Winter past than in any equal Part of my Life. I hope by the Blessing of God to recover it when I may have the Pleasure of living in my own Country.
We have had on the Carpet Questions relating to our Ministers abroad - Whether they should be recalled. It was agreed that the Question be put severally with Respect to Each. A Majority of Voices were against the Recall of Doctor Franklin, though some Gentlemen spoke warmly against him.1 That, for the Recall of Dr. Lee, met with an equal Division, and so it was lost. I will only remark to you that after long Debates, in which as great Freedoms, I suppose, were used as could be consistently with Decency and Truth, his Abilities, his Integrity and warm Attachment to America remain unimpeachable. It is unfortunate when Attempts are made to remove a Servant of the Publick, whose Fidelity shines the brighter, the more his Conduct is sifted, but so it will happen when others wish to supplant him. I do not say this is the Case at present. I hope there is no Motive more unworthy; but I will not answer for all among the Thousands in America, who may conceive themselves fit for important Trusts, I Journals of the Continental Congress, XIII. 500. 2 Ib., xiv. 542.
and some of them may shortly offer themselves with a View of serving such Purposes as may not be agreable to others. I suspect from a Letter which I have heard publickly read that our Friend J. A[dams] is or will be as obnoxious to a Party as Dr. F[ranklin] and Dr. Lee, and for the same Reason. But I will tell you all when I see you. Pray inform Mr. Story that his Petition is referrd to the Treasury and that I expect it will have a favorable Issue. Be so good as to let Mrs. A. know that I am well, but have not Time to write to her now. Adieu my Friend. Yr. affectionate
May 11th, '79.
JAMES WARREN TO MERCY WARREN
BOSTON, June 6th, 1779
MY DEAR MERCY, — I have read one Excellent Sermon this day and heard two others. What next can I do better than write to a Saint. What if she has Trembling Nerves and a palpitating Heart. She has good Sense she has Exalted Virtue and refined Piety. She is amiable even in that Weakness which is the Consequence of the Exquisite delicacy and softness of her Sex. She would be so to me if she had more of that rough fortitude which the Times and the Circumstances pictured in her Letter of the 2d Instant read yesterday may seem to you to require. All Nature is a Mystery. Why then should I Attempt to Explore the reasons and to say how it is that a Mind, possessed of a Masculine Genius well stocked with Learning, fortified by Phylosophy and Religion, should be so easily Impressed by the adverse Circumstances or Inconveniences of this World; but this will happen whether we can account for it or Not. a brilliant and Busy Imagination often if not always Accompanys great qualities. It Commands Admiration but is often Mischievous and when yours is not directed to the bright side of things, I often wish it as Sluggish as my own, but I long to Banter and Laugh you out of your whimsical Gloom. What! want Fortitude because I have Faith, curious indeed; be un
hinged because self Interest Wickedness and Wicked Men Abound. When was it Otherwise it is Glorious to defeat them "and after all the Struggle" what? Why secure to ourselves and Entail to Posterity Independence, Peace and Happiness. This is a Subject for an Heroic Poem-rouse therefore Your Muse. Tune it with Nervous harmony to Celebrate the Success of this great Struggle and the Characters of those whose Integrity and Virtue have defeated the Policy and Force of our Enemies and above all that Providence by whose direction I verily believe without a doubt we shall be saved. "I cant go to Congress, I wont go." Who would not with the Assurance of such good Company. I never thought of it before, you gave such great Encouragement. Sure it would be a Charming ride to shake of the Chagrin and it might be made on Grand Principles. If it be now more difficult and dangerous than ever it will be more glorious in proportion. If you fie on the Sentiment as roman Enthusiasm I call on you to Contest it. If it be Just you must practise upon it. What signify Sentiments without Exciting virtuous practise. But they did not choose me, so there is an End of all my Enthusiasm and your fears. Genl. Ward is Chose. however I will claim a little Merit with you if it be at the Expense of the prophecies of my sweet Prophetess. I prevented my own and promoted his Choice. Her little trembling Nerves was among the Influential reasons. The Others I will tell you at Another Time, only be assured for the present despair of the Cause was not Among them. I think there will soon be Another Choice - perhaps two. will you go if I will.1
We have an Account that the Enemy are gone up North River. Some say they have destroyed Peeks Hill. They will Catch a Tartar and a dire flogging soon. Why should I not prophecy as well as other Folks? My next may tell you of a Grand Fleet of our Allies in these Seas, of successful operations in Europe or the West Indies, etc., etc, to make your Heart beat with Joy instead of anxiety. Two ships are now coming in; perhaps they may bring the News I wish for. if not we shall have it. I Expect to get three ships away this week, to have some Share in raising an Army and laying a Tax to support it, and then to fly on the wings of
I The choice fell upon George Partridge and Artemas Ward.
Love to the Arms of a Beloved Wife whose I am with the Greatest Affection
No Rain yet Oh, Dismal. I dread a drought more than the Arms of Britain or the policy of Villains.
I wrote you yesterday by Coll. Freeman. Perhaps I shall write you again Tomorrow. You cant help it if you would, nor can I if an oppy presents and I can get a Minutes Time. Take care of your Health that I may have the pleasure of seeing you well. I am glad to hear Mrs. Lothrop Continues to grow better. My Love to her and the Boys.
Monday Morning. How do you do this fine Cool Morning? I hope very well. I am persuaded the Faintness and Languor and Complained of was oweing to the first comeing of warm weather. Perhaps that has an Influence on the Mind and Spirits. I am Nothing is a very humble Sentiment. Did ever such an Idea pass over the Imagination of a Poet before. If it returns I advise you to set down and write a Satyr on Villains, there are enough of them. If not take in the Fools then I am sure you will have enough. I am sure the remedy will succeed and you will feel a Laudable Pride. The Ship in last Night is a prize of the Boston a French Ship from So Carolina to France taken by a York Privateer and retaken by the Boston.
BOSTON, N. ENGLAND, June 13, 1779
DEAR SIR, The Providence Frigate and a Packet have been long held in readiness to proceed to France. the first is now ordered to another service and we have yet no orders for the last. this is to go by a small private Vessel accidentally met with. I dare say you experience in common with us the Inconveniences of the little Intercourse between Europe and America, and wish with the same Anxiety to hear from here that we often do from Europe. We seldom hear what is acting on your Great Stage, and
JAMES WARREN TO JOHN Adams