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party spirit than I hoped was in America to enter on any new frame of Government by which trust must be reposed and may be abused with such marks of festivity and joy.
I am much obliged to you for sending me the reasons of dissent in Pensilvania and the pamphlet circulated in the Massachusets the one is well drawn up and the other is written with spirit and
I assure you, Dear Madam, I pay a very anxious attention to the concerns of America and were not my inclinations drawn that way on determined principles my friendship for yourself and family would engage me to interest myself in the welfare of any country of which you were Citizens.
Mr. Adams I see by the papers has been long returned to his native Country he is a very warm Federalist and by what I have discerned of yours and Mr. Warren's politicall sentiments and opinions you will not agree quite so well on public matters as you did formerly.
I am exceedingly sorry that you have had so many occasions to mourn the hopless hand of Death in your own family the tenderness of youth in female constitution has much to dread from the rigor of your climate but it must be some very forcible and unlucky stroke of destiny which could carry of in the flower of his age Mr. Lincoln who appeared a very stout and healthy young man.1
As your friendship inclines you to interest yourself in the concerns of my family I have the pleasure to inform you that Mrs. Gregorie has got a Daughter and that the Mother and the Child are both well.
The Turks have made a stand against the German and Russian forces which has surprized all Europe. I believe they owe the present figure they make in arms to the restless ambition of the french court which has carved out work enough to employ it for some time at home, but I cannot leave this subject without paying a tribute of praise to the sensible and intrepid conduct of the French who have disputed rights with a Sovereign backed with above a hundred thousand military men.
1 Mary, daughter of James and Ruth (Cunningham) Otis married Benjamin Lincoln (1755-1788), son of General Benjamin Lincoln. The young man died January 18, 1788.
Mr. Graham joins me in affectionate regards to your self Mr. Warren and family and compliments to all friends who do us the honor to remember us From Dear Madam with an high esteem Your Sincere Friend And Servt
CATH: MACAULAY GRAHAM BINFIELD, near BRACKNAL, BERKS., Octbr. 29, '88.
I have taken a small Villa in Berkshire about thirty miles from London where I propose to reside chiefly being quite tired of the absurdities of the Capital.
BRAINTREE, March 2, 1789
Your friendly Letter of the third and twentieth of February, I did not receive till Saturday last. To your Friend, who has now been returned from N. York these five Weeks, I have delivered your inclosed Letter as desired. She will acknowledge the Receipt of it, and transmit you the Compliments of her fellow Travellers. our Correspondence has had a short Interruption, it is true, as all others in which I have had any concern have been. I have indeed enjoyed a delightful Rest, tho my Mind has been constantly employed with my private and domestic affairs, which by a negligence of fifteen Years were in such disorder, as would require several Years to rectify. The Period from the 17. June, 1788, to this 2d of March, 1789, has been the Sweetest Morsel of my Life, and I despair of ever tasting such another. This delightful Retreat, humble as it is, I shall quit with great regret. There never was and never will be found for me, an office in public Life, that will furnish the Entertainment and Refreshment of the Mountain the Meadow and the Stream.
According to private Accounts from the Southward there is a Majority of Votes for me to be Vice President. But the People of our united America find it much easier to institute Authority than to yield Obedience. They have Smarted Severely under a total oblivion of the two first Principles of Liberty and of Commerce,
that Laws are the fountain of Freedom and Punctuality the Source of Credit. Yet there is still room to fear, that there is not enough of the Spirit of Union to insure Obedience to the Laws nor enough of Shame and Scorn of Evasion, to secure that Revenue on which Punctuality will depend. The Resources of this Country are abundantly Superiour to every Exigency and if they are not applied, it must be owing to a Want of Knowledge or a Want of Integrity....
PLIMOUTH, March 9th, 1789
I acknowledge a Letter has been long due to General Knox, but as I only am the sufferer thereby no apology is necessary for the neglect. Yet I think I could make a very hansome one considering the great events which have since taken place, events too interesting to admit of silence and too Delicate for a Lady to touch upon.
But as we now seem to have verged to the entrance of a permanent and I hope peacefull Government, an object which has long been the wish of every good man and woman in America, though they may have varied in opinion relative to some particular points, I feel less timidity than for some months past, even if I should accidentally touch on the subject of politics. Yet in this letter I mean to avoid them and, only after enquiries relative to the Health of Mrs. Knox and Family, ask you to transmit the enclosed to my friend Mrs. Montgomery, if she should happen to have left the continent before this reaches N-York, sure [that] you will excuse the freedom I feel no hesitancy in making the request. . . .
I think I should like to look into the Federal City once in the course of my perigrinations, though not that I sigh for the splendour of Courts, or the indulgence of curiosity that might be fed with variety of observation on the dawn of infant empire and the Regalia of Monarchy, but I have still those antiquated feelings about me which seldom approaches the pallaces of kings. I love
MERCY WARREN TO HENRY KNOX
my old Friends, many of whom are collected at New York; I am fond of the society of the truly worthy, and at the head of the Respectable list I revere and esteem the illustrious Washington and lady. of them both I have too high an opinion to suspect they will ever forget their friends and correspondents at Plimouth who most sincerely wish he may pass through his Elevated situation (till nature summons him to the Grave) with the same Eclat that has accompanied his Name through a considerable part of the habitable Globe....
HENRY KNOX to Mercy WARREN
NEW YORK, 29 March, 1789
MADAM, I had the pleasure last evening to receive your favor of the 9th instant with its enclosure for Mrs. Montgomery.1 That Lady has not yet gone to Europe being at the Manor of Livingston. The letter shall be delivered to some of her family in this City.
I was very sorry when in Boston that my business was of such a nature as prevented my visiting you and the general at Plymouth. I hope on my next journey, I shall be more at liberty, to indulge my respect and attachment for you and him.
I would the objects at this place were of sufficient attraction, to induce you and the Genl. to an excursion. If the length of the Journey by land should deter, the opportunities by Water by the Way of Newport, are at once convenient, safe and pleasant.
The birth and principles of a government destined for so rising and extensive an empire form a momentous crisis. The trains for happiness or misery will be involved in its first measures. A knowledge of human nature, and the existing circumstances of the Country, with wisdom to apply them, will be eminently required. Whether the necessary qualifications for a proper administration, will be easily found, or have been brought forward by the late elections, must be determined by experience.
1 Janet, daughter of Robert R. Livingston and widow of Richard Montgomery.
But with your zeal for the happiness of your Country, and with your beleif for the glory it may attain, it would be highly pleasing for you to be an immediate spectator of the various agitations and projects at the off-set. Such an uncommon event in the annals of human nature would be a proper object for the exercise of the mind and pen of a Philosophic historian.
The roads have been so bad to the southward, that the number of members necessary to form the two houses, have not yet arrived. But about the first of april they will be completed, only two representatives, and one senator being deficient.
The government will not however be fully organized by the arrival of the President and vice President untill about the first of May.
With respects to Genl. Warren I am Madam your sincere and Most Obedient humble Servant
MERCY WARREN TO JOHN Adams
SIR, -You are too well acquainted with the history of the world and the distresses of mankind to expect to stand on the eminence of rank, fortune, and influence, without solicitations from various quarters.
Where you feel a friendship it will always be a sufficient stimulus for the exertion of every kind office without importunity, and when applyed to by strangers in distress your benevolence, I trust, will excite due attention.
This is all the apology I shall make for enclosing a letter from a lady whose history you may have been acquainted with until the period when Col. Walker, like many other good men who suffered in the public cause, was neglected by that public and obliged to retire to an obscure corner, there silently to endure penury and slight: which from a state of affluence and independence is trying enough to the feelings of the human heart, without