Mill Boy Letters

August 24, 1831

LOWELL HISTORICAL SOCIETY
ALFRED GILMAN COLLECTION

WRITTEN BY SYLVANUS ADAMS1
TO ALFRED GILMAN

                                     Springfield, Chickopee Factory, 24th Aug. 1831
Respected Friend:

           I avail myself of the few leisure moments, which I now have, as ones truly auspicious for writing to you. I should have written before had it not been for pre-engagements to other friends, which I thought it my duty to ful-fil prior to my complying with your request. I hope, however that this coming as it does from a friend, and dictated by those kindly feelings which were cher-ished, in common, at our Lyceum, may not fail to meet with a grateful reception, and merit a reciprocal and prompt reply.

           It is natural for a person in whose mind there has been incited a desire for improment, after he has arrived at his place of destination which is to be his future pla-ce of abode, after making the common enquiries about the place, people, busin-ess to enquire for a library, news room, Lyceum, or whatever there may chan-ce to be for a persons improvement, and facilitate his progress to the goal of literature and knowledge. Such, then were my enquiries; but judge my sup-prise when I was told that none of those institutions which are the indispensible prer-equists to a person’s advancement in knowledge were to be found within the limits of Chickopee. There is a wide differance between the people here and Lowell so far as it relates to intellectual persuits. They do not many of them, seem to care whether they keep place with the improvements which are going on or not; they have sunk into a listless indifference to them, and it seems to be inmaterial to them whether they rise there from or not. There are some honorable exceptions among
us, for there are some literary men here; but they are “few and far be-tween.” There are, too, some eastern men here, with whom I wass acquainted whose minds are somewhat differently constructed from the “natives” as they are called. Under existing circumstances I truly need your sympathy which was so kindly expressed in a communication, which I presume was read before the Lyceum. after my departure.. I assure you it was gratefully received at the time, and it comes up before me now as a lasting memorial of that affectionate reg-ard which I hope we may ever cherish toward each other; - and I hope to be ever able to reciprocate all favors whether coming from you to other friends with whom I was intimate while in Lowell. I suppose you would like to know something

  1Sylvanus Adams b: 10 Jul 1810, Medway, MA d: 16 Nov 1869, MA; parents: 
     Hezekiah and Julia Adams; employed: Lowell and Chicopee, Agent – Dwight 
     Company – cotton mill;  married: Caroline Wasson b: MA.

of the place in which I live’ I will therefore pass to give you a brief disscrriton of it, and all else which may seem to be connected wit it.

           Springfied is a large town, 11 miles by 7 it is situated on the east bank of Ct. river over which there is a bridge 1234 feet long, 24 miles from Hartford, Ct. and 18 from Northampton. The village is handsomely built and regularly laid out the buildings are neat and some of them exquistly beautiful; the churches and
other public buildings are handsome and some of them truly magnificent. One of the principal armories in the U.States is located here, it is arranged on a large square, containing the lock-filers and stock-finishers shops and sever-al spacious buildings built of brick, for the repository of arms. It is situated on elevated ground 1/2 mile east of the village and commands a verry respecta-ble appearance. The walter shops where the barrels are forged and bored, are situated on Mill Creek, one mile south of the village.

            Chickopee, is situated 4 miles up the river, at the mouth of the Chickopee river, where it empties into the Ct. It is a small village containing one chu-rch, post office, hotel, etc. and supported chiefly by the farming interest

            Chickcopee Factory, the place in which I live is situated 5 miles N.E. of Springfield village and 3 miles east of Chickcopee on the south bank of the river Chickcopee; its a beautiful river; below the falls it meanders through a clus-ter of small hills and valllies which are embellished on either side with beautiful
groves of elm, maple and buttonwood which make it very pleasant and delecta-ble retreat for the lovers of beauty and nature. This is exclusively a manufacturing place. And contains there are employed about 50 hands; a manufactory of edge tools, an iron foundary and brick kiln in which our bricks are made.

            There are 3 stores, for foreign and domestick goods, 2 shoe store, 2 taylors and 1 doctor, but no barber no lawyer. There 3 small religious societies, Baptist, Methodist and Presbyterian. The Methodist have quite a small meeting house, in which they hold their meetings; the Baptists have theirs in the paper mill
and the Presbyterians, which is the largest and the most popular, hold their meetings in a large and commodious school house. Their ministers are men of very ordiary talents and will not hardly reach mediocrity.

           Last Sunday evening, just as bright Pheobus was glideing his way down the broad and expansive horizon in the west, I strolled about a mile ou of the village and ascended an elevated piece of land, where I had a grand view of Mount Tom, situated in Easthampton on the west side of the Ct. river. From this place we have a full view of it from its base to the summit, and it makes a truly grand and picturesque appearance just as the sun is going down, when we behold it lightly enveloped in a thin mantle of azure, through which can just be discerned the trees on its sides and tops it reminds one of a huge land monster reposing his sluggish limbs beneath the wide spreading umbrella of heaven.
 

            Friend Gilman, I must now close my brief epistle, for gloomy midnight is approaching apace with all its train of solemn reflections and sleep “gentle sleep”, is drawing her mantle over my senses, and the zephers which find their way into my window to fan my light bid me retire to rest and I will obey and bring my letter to a close by requesting you to remember me to any of my friends, Bradbury and Blanchard and all others who may deign to enquire.

                                  Very respectfully Your friend,
                                  And obedient servant,
Alfred Gilman             Sylvanus Adams

 

P.S. I have herein enclosed 1 dollar (presuming you will do the business for me) as pay for the Mercury, for six months, and wish you to forward it to me. directed to Chickcopee Factory Springfield,
Mass
                                  S.A.

October 30, 1831

LOWELL HISTORICAL SOCIETY
ALFRED GILMAN COLLECTION

WRITTEN BY SYLVANUS ADAMS1
TO ALFRED GILMAN

                                   Springfield, Chickcopee Factory, Oct. 30, 1831

Respected Friend,

            Your letter of 7th Sept. was duly received, and its contents properly appreciated.  I should have written before in answer to it, could I have found sufficient matter within the precinct of my own pericranium to do it.  Though it afforded an ample field, on which the mind might dillate, and a fruitful source for the pen of the literati, yet, when, within the hands of a novice, is but a sorry instrument: however, such as I have I
give unto thee, and hope it may not fail to be of little interest to you.

            You say “it’s is quite probable your pen has become a little rusty”, but if were to judge from the epistle before me, I should say your pen, feelings and intellect, were in a  high state of pollishe.  But, how sadly the reverse is my condition; instead of having much to keep off the int-ectural rust.  I have to labour against the pestiferous influence of others which tends directly to accumulate it.  You must excuse me for again touching upon the society in this place, but if you knew its exact state you would not blame me.  Man is a social being, and he needs soci-ety to keep off that listless ennui which alternately creeps over him,
occasioned by a monotonius course of  work or study - something for a change - something to exilerate the drooping spirits, and a something for variety which “is the very spice of life.”  Such were my views when I enter-ed society.  I was invited to a party some three weeks since, on Sunday evening!  a party commonly denominated “kissing parties.” I was not aware of any thing more than a social chat, or perhaps a few rounds of the “button” or a few turns of the “plate” - but judgemy surprise when I found instead of those harmless plays, we were entertained by the most ludicrous buffoonery accompanyed by the most vociferous roars of laughter and “comic songs”, which would have disgusted a Harlequin himself.  I was accidentally caught in another party on Sunday evening where cards! were unceremoniously introduced: - and because I had the independence to remark, after the

  1Sylvanus Adams b: 10 Jul 1810, Medway, MA d: 16 Nov 1869, MA; parents: 
     Hezekiah and Julia Adams; employed: Lowell and Chicopee, Agent – Dwight 
     Company – cotton mill; married: Caroline Wasson b: MA.

 

party, that it was “perfectly rediculous” it was taken in high dudgeon, and I arrayed (in their coversion) before the dread tribunal of the party-going populace, for my daring audacity and impudence. My situation, however, is much more pleasant than when I last wrote.  I have obtained a good boarding place in a small family, where a scientific man boards, (the superintendant of the factorys and mechanical agent.)  But, were it not for facilities which the place and business affords for advancing my pecuniary interest.  I would make my exit.  amediately; but under existing circumstances, I think it will be a year before visit Lowell.  I have engaged for that length of time for 9 shillings per day, and some other avantages.

           You say, that “youth is the time to cultivate the finer feelings.”  So indeed it is and I am happy in thinking that your promptness in answering my letter has given me fresh assurance of your sincerity. I hope that hereafter there may be no lack of that friendly intercourse, which, it seems we both feel desireous of warming into life.

            I have recently received a letter from our friend Dole, which was a very good one.  He informs me that the “ Frankling Lyceum”, (the object of my daily thoughts and evening meditating) remains about “so-so”, but - I should think from what he says in regard to it, that it is in a truly flourishing state insomuch
that it has thrown to the wind its plebian garb and placed at its head one of the limbs of the law.  This betokens something auspicious in your existance and seems to warrent the fulfillment of our most sanguine expectations.  But do not let your prosperity here you into an effeminate state - know that the institution is
to be buoyed up and kept alive by your own vigilance and perseverance.  Esq. Knowles is indeed a valuable accesion to your number, but beware of many of those law - literary gentlemen, they are to be dreaded, for they will gnaw upon your vitals until they have wrought your destruction.

           I have heretofore, thought some of writing a communication for your “box”, and should have done it prior to this, had I not caught a glimpse of the intellectual front which the society now carries which made me recoil, and so I have abandoned it.

                                  Respectfully yours
                                  Sylvanus Adams
P.S.  Write soon and I will answer it.
No ifs in the way, no no.
            S.A.

            Alfred Gilman

January 1, 1832

LOWELL HISTORICAL SOCIETY
ALFRED GILMAN COLLECTION

WRITTEN BY SYLVANUS ADAMS1
TO ALFRED GILMAN

                                        Chickcopee Factory, 1st.  Jan. 1832

My Dear Gilman:

           I wish you a happy New Year, outright, which by the way is the only plausible excuse I can offer for delaying to answer yours’ (Nov. 8th) which I assure you was very gratefully received and read with avidity.

           You accuse me of “flattery”.  Now, I disclaim any such thing; for I only spoke the truth and the real sentiments of my heart. I am sorry to be under the necessity of retorting upon you for falling into the same strain of sycopancy of which you accuse me.

           My “originality”- fie upon you, why it’s the most injudiciousy bestowed panegyrick that ever mortal man received.  But, seriously.  If you have found anything meritorious in my letters your are certainly deserving of a great deal of praise for your sagacity in discovering it.  My [letters] have contained nothing but villinous vitoperations [against] the place and the people thereof; but rest assured that this letter shall be as free as this sheet of paper before I began my scribblings;- for I am determined that not another epethet shall find its way to the point of my pen about this curs’d - but hold - I can’t go on I
must change the subject.

           I am in raptures for we have got up a Reading Room in here, which is to be opened to-night for the first time; and I too am one of the managers, or rather one of the committee of selection and management.  Hem - so you see I am in office Now, this is downright egotism - I am just such fool to tell of
every thing that transpires concerning myself, so you must excuse and forget and forgive, and all this.  I been reading Moore’s Life of Lord Byron, and for all the world Weld is his (Byron) very prototype all except his disposition. 

  1Sylvanus Adams b: 10 Jul 1810, Medway, MA d: 16 Nov 1869, MA; parents: 
    Hezekiah and Julia Adams; employed: Lowell and Chicopee, Agent – Dwight 
    Company – cotton mill; married: Caroline Wasson b: MA.

I have waded through the first volume and have got the second which looks ponderous and pregnant with something, withal.  It is quite to volumionous, but I hope to live through it for it is very interesting.  I have his works entire at my refulsal and hope soon to get time to read them.

           You say you think of leaving Lowell for the New York the metropolis of this republick; - and wish me to act as umpire.  It is a delicate place, but I’ll accept it and judge as “righteously” as my moral character will permit. The scheme you propose, I think to be a good one, but whether he (Billings) will accept it or not, there is the stick.  I was placed in similar circumstances when I left Lowell and I will tell you how I acted.  I made known my intentions of leaving or wishing to leave but was amediately rebutted with the answer that “you have agreed to stay year which is not out until April”. Well, what do you ask for my time?  I wish to pay you a stipulated sum, which, after some bantering was decided upon; but I thought rather hard to pay it as I had then just attained my majority.  But after all my advice will be but paltry and as “dust in the ballance”, so you must act according to your own views of right and wrong, - believing you will act scrupleously:  It seems to me that - I should go, but I am faulty with the rest of the world, so don’t take me for a criterion.

           You say that I am your only correspondant (by-the-by your not very highly favored) but I have many which will account in a digree, for neglecting you.  I am in arrears to several valuable correspondants - Mr. Dole for one to whom I wish you to give my unfeigned regards. He is a valuable friend and good companion, as you, myself, and many other living witnesses can testify. He is a schollar and poet too, but, the purity of his character out-shines them all.  I never saw a person with whom I have become acquainted
whose character wears so well as his.  He is a paragon.

           Now for the closing scene with my new pen, which you will readily discover I have sharpened.  How does that literary forum the “Franklin Lyceum”?  Who among you is the most eloquent, the most reasonable, unreasonable, learned and so forth?  Do tell.  I wish I were with you so that I mi-
ght go to that - “forum for fun and veridy, the debating society.”

           I wish you would order my Mercury to be soped when the six-months expires, which I believe is the first of March.  I does not arrive here regularly.  Sometimes it gets here Monday, sometimes Tuesday and sometimes not at all.  I do not like the management of it so well as I should wish - there is too much about “E.C. Purdy”, “Councillor John” etc.  Billings had better get it sterotyed, it will save expense and in that way  he may dispense with your services.

           Do you know Abner W. Buttrick?  He is or was Clerk for France Hobbs or the ajacent store, I believe. I wrote to him some 4 months ago, but have not as yet received an answer.  He was my friend, but if he has abandoned me so be it.  Do ask him if he has received my epistle for I feel anxious to know.

           Pray remit me an answer to this blotted paper for it gives me a deal of pleasure to read your letters.
                                 Yours ever.

       A. Gilman           Adams

P.S. This is rather a sorry New Years token, but it’s my best

April 22, 1832

LOWELL HISTORICAL SOCIETY
ALFRED GILMAN COLLECTION

WRITTEN BY SYLVANUS ADAMS1
TO ALFRED GILMAN

                                          Chicopee Factory April 22, 1832

My Dear Gilman: -

           I once more-after the lapse of little more than a month – resume my pen to answer yours of Feb.y 12th and make my humble acknowledgements for the same, and with as many additional remarks and cogitations as I can glean from my rusty and distorted intellect.  Your letters are greeted like Angels visits “which are few and far between”.  You will probably say that mine are few and far between, but I cannot
flatter myself, if I would that they are received with as much difference as those heavenly messengers, yet I hope they bear a proportional part in your estimation.  I have now been here a little rising eight months, and is looking over your letters I find I have received only three: we are surely falling in the rear with regard to our corrispondence; but let the past suffice we ( I say we, because I believe we have both been negletful of our duty as friends) must be more punctual in future.  But enough of this tedious apology - I will to your letter, which is not tedious but - really amusing as well as instructive - it is utele dulce or in other words utility with pleasure.

           The “loss” of “instructions” which you mention, I will try to repair by sending you something equivalent, but should your frotitude fail I will so far break my pledge so as to give you an occasional dose of my splein for to exilerate.  By the way, the state of our society is improving a little, but very slow and almost imperceptible.  You say you want to fall in love or get in some way or other you don’t much care how, and ask my advice, and wish to know the sensations before hand.  I wish I were able to gratify you in this respect, for I suppose you think it a delicate affair; but I am in good sooth, a novice in amorous
affairs, and dare not risk an opinion where there is so much involved.

  1Sylvanus Adams b: 10 Jul 1810, Medway, MA d: 16 Nov 1869, MA; parents: 
     Hezekiah and Julia Adams; employed: Lowell and Chicopee, Agent – Dwight 
     Company – cotton mill; married: Caroline Wasson b: MA.

I have somewhere read, that we cannot walk into love, nor run into it, nor jump into it nor “tumble” into it but must absolutely fall into it and rue the direful consequences.  I mentioned your request to a female friend of mine and she advised me to incourage you to persevere, from which I infer’ed that the “sensations” were very pleasing on their part at least.  Experience is the best school.  Gibon says mankind
will not take knowledge of the experience of others but must see and hear feel for themselves; - so I leave you to her tuition requesting you when you have learnes to communicate your knowledge to your friend who will apply himself to wisdom accordingly.

           Wednesday evening - talking of love, and woman reminds of a little amorous affair in which I have been engaged since my residence here - which I cannot refrain from communicating to you, tho I do it confidently; for such silly concerns I concieve to be beneath my dignity, and should not like to proclaim
them upon the “house tops”.  The affair to which I allude has terminated very happily.  Not that it has resulted in marriage or any thing approaching there to, - no; - and many thanks to my propitious stars for their kindly guidance in this respect.  If they are always so solitious for my wellfare I shall be truly blest.  Soon after my arrival here I was introduced unto a family which was said to have been respectable and to all appearance was such; but subsequent acquaintance has led me to believe, they are of rather a doubtful character.

           In this family there were two girls, one of eighteen the other sixteen, and both pretty, so far as external appearance is concerned.  They possessed some very accomplishments, but their learning was very poor.  They could dance gracefully and sing equisitly, that comprise the whole of their accomplishments and to their form and features I don’t think it worth while to give you a sentimental discription; - but suffice it to say, their ancles (ha ha ha) are turned most exquisitly beautiful, their hands small and delicate, their forwards, high and commanding, eyes bright and expressive one with raven locks and the other with flax in colour tho’ like silk in texture (If my discription don’t vie with high romance I don’t know what will).  Now, was not all this captivating?  I was almost led to believe what the Poet has said … that -

             “In vain, proud man – in vain he tries,
             To ‘scape from beauty’s conquering eyes:
             He boldy talks – looks very brave,
             But swiftly falls – a woman’s slave!”

             Not exactly a slave however.  But to the subject.

           I was received most cordially – flattered and carressed Consumately - complimented and extoled till it become sickening, and I believe if I had endured it much longer I should have become as concited and [     ]fool as they themselve are.  Matters went on swimmingly for a while and I began to think of offering my my
addresses to one of them when a lucky incident  pot’d in and exploded the whole.  I tho’t my self groosly insulted and slighted on one occasion, which caused an open rupture and I to resent the flagrant strage, resolved to withdraw from their society - wrote them a saucy note to that effect and after a great deal of gossip and petty scandal - which abounds in the village - the affair is hushed and silenced, this happened  some 6 months ago.  We meet each other almost every day, yet we pass we pass with as much social pride as tho’ we were the real disciples of the old Philosopher himself.

           My paper is done and so is this anomolons production it’s all nonsence, but you led me to it.

           Very respectfully yours etc.  S. Adams

May 7, 1832

LOWELL HISTORICAL SOCIETY
ALFRED GILMAN COLLECTION

WRITTEN BY SYLVANUS ADAMS1
TO ALFRED GILMAN

                                  Chicopee Factory, Monday evening, May 7th 1832

My Satirical Friend-

            Oh you sarcastic dog! I will have you gibleted for a satirist. - So much for telling love stories. Are not the feelings of a jilted lover acute enough without jeer, taunt and ridecule to make them more sever? -
Tho by the way, I believe I was not exactly jilted - I could not wait for that. I have congratulated myself a hundred times since the affair transpired for my happy escape. I am resolved that “experience” shall not be an unproffitable school to me.

            I suppose I must avoid even making mention of the reception of your letter, for fear it will be construed into “flattery”. Though I could take precedence of many of the men, whom the world call great, yet I disdain flattery and the one who administers it as much as you do; and if I inadvertantly fall into it I humbly beg to be excused - tho’ I was not aware as I once before remarked - of flattering, when expressing an honest opinion. That, however, shall for this once be keep back.

            I shall not tell you, as I intented of the infinite satisfaction your epistle gave me; - nor mention how well pleased I was with the notice of your contempories whom you have so happily discribed. No; not a word of it shall you hear or see - it shall all be pondered in my heart, but there is one thing you cannot deprive me, viz. the pleasures of reflection - of silently enjoying it in secret and cogitating upon it, for me own instruction.

            Really, my dear G. I have begun a sorry letter to you and do not know how to carry it through in good shape. I am seriously afflicted with the “blues” that I can do nothing, as I ought. I am fearful at times
of becoming a surly misanthrope - a complete man hater, ay, and woman too. It is somewhat singular that at this season of the year, when nature is dressing herself up, as it were in her holiday garments - spreading her velvet carpeting over the earth filling the air we inhale with her choicest fragrance and perfume - that man, man her highly favour’d child, should be cast down with dispondancy. But so it is the spring saeson seems to be the worst time for spirits (not ardent spirits) I feel as dispirited and dumpish as the veriest idiot or lovesick swain. (Sometimes I think the terms symonymous).

  1Sylvanus Adams b: 10 Jul 1810, Medway, MA d: 16 Nov 1869, MA; parents: 
     Hezekiah and Julia Adams; employed: Lowell and Chicopee, Agent – Dwight 
     Company – cotton mill; married: Caroline Wasson b: MA.

            But melancholy is - is - what? No matter - let it pass - I was leading my mind into labyrinth of melancholy, but it will not answer, I must extricede it before it is to late. Such thoughts will occasionally steal into our minds unawares, but we never ought to foster them, but rather endeavor to dispel and shake them off. Solemn reflection, however, such as are calculated to make us wiser and better, may and ought to be indulged, tho’ not to too great an extent.

            Many thanks, my good fellow, for your ‘chapter’, of characters or “caractures” - just as you please, who comprise the literate’ of the “Franklin Lyceum”. What a mammoth concern you have got there. Who would have believed a year ago that such inexorable “speachifiers” could have been produced by that boyish society, the Lyceum. But so it is - “a little one hath become a thousand” and, perhaps may “put ten thousands to flight”. Why I should not dare to say ‘boo’ among ye, much more to say “Mr. President”. How dwarfish I should appear there - look and act as much like a “Novice” in literature as I am in love affairs. It would indeed, be a great pleasure to me, to visit you and see the vast improvement you have made: and I think (God willing) I shall be gratified in the course of five months, for I contemplate visiting Lowell the last of Sept. or first of Oct. it may be - (can I eradicate the attachments I have for this place) - that I shall conclude to return and take up my residence there. Shouldn’t I be a conspicious residend? Surely so.

            Wednesday noon, I intened to have sent this by the mail and did not finish it last night, but an opportunity is presented by which I can send it privately, so I avail myself of it, and shall bring this brief letter to a close by hoping it will find you in the enjoyment of “Season’s whole pleasure” and basking in the sunny smiles of an Houres, or the object of your affections - which is happiness enough, I imagine, tho’ I assure you I know nothing by “experience”

                                  Your cynical friend,
                                  Sylvanus Adams

          P.S. Have you fall in love yet?
          Where is your “Journal of Medical
          Literature”? Is it to be a present or
          posthumerous work?

                                 S.A.

June 12, 1832

LOWELL HISTORICAL SOCIETY
ALFRED GILMAN COLLECTION

WRITTEN BY SYLVANUS ADAMS1
TO ALFRED GILMAN

          Springfield, Chicopee Factory, Tuesday evening June 12th 1832

Worthy Friend,

           I had sharpened my pen & prepared my other utensils, last evening for writing to you but, just as I was about putting my pen to paper, two friends called & invited me to take a watter excursion with some ladies! And I with a good deal of reluctance accepted, & of course yielded the claims of my best friend to those of the fair! I intend, however that the last nights’adventures shall subserve me for this nights
sucubrations, and if the perusal of the relation gives you half the pleasure that I received in the participation you may think yourself amply remunerated for your trouble, But, before I proceed, it will be necessary for me to premise a little by way of explanation so that you need not be in the dark concerning the change either in me or the society of the village. Our society has improved & think very materially, or else I have lost the sense of seeing & hearing correctly. It is not the worst nor the best, but about mediocrity. Buffoon-parties, on Sunday evenings, are abandoned-cards, become stale and useless-and, in sooth, the village seems to wear an intire different aspect from what it did ten months ago-but there is still a chance for impovement. I must be brief in my preliminary remarks-so to my theme.

           The Chicopee River is what I term, beautiful-it is about the size of the Concord, but its watters are much more pellucid and pure. It falls forecipitately over a bed of rocks, at its junction with the canal, which is near by, in the center of the village and then foams along , like an ambitions courser over rocks & stones, till it finds its way into the Connecticut. A small dam is raised just above the falls, for turning the watter-
above that, the surface, is glassy, smoothe, and deep, the bank

  1Sylvanus Adams b: 10 Jul 1810, Medway, MA d: 16 Nov 1869, MA; 
     parents: Hezekiah and Julia Adams; employed: Lowell and Chicopee, 
    Agent – Dwight Company – cotton mill; married: Caroline Wasson b: MA.

 

on the left rises abrupt and steep-the other, is of alluvian soil with here & there, lawns and groves. Now, can you form an idea of the delight of a sail on such an evening as last, ah, and with such a company?- if not, I will attempt something like a discription. Not a breath of air was there wandering to disturb the smoothness of the watter- the moon sent down her rays of ineffable light and glaassed herself in one expansive mirror, on the waveless watter. No uneasy leaf nerved itself to disturb the stillness of the scene, but all was hushed in the solemn silence of midnight, as it were, save the gentle chirping of the cricket and the plaintive notes of the nightingale-and now add to that, my love-lorn Gilman, the seet (sweet) and silvery tones of beautiful female voices, and will you not say the scene is estatical-rapturous even to the sublime? After we had ascended hip-o-will poured forth her shrill notes, blended with the rich accompanyment of female voices-which were echoed back from the ajacent cliffs-which formed a melody more sweet more
harmonious and withal more enchanting than did the Lyre of Olimphus, or its discription by Fletcher. After we had returned to the falls, from where we started, whom should we see but a lover seated upon the bank, pouring into the “half-averted ear” of his mistress, his devoted, unalterable, his never-dying attachment. And whom do you think the fair one was?- why, it was none other than my-you know what-the one that-that-yes that jilted me. This is what I call romance in real life.

            You have, probably, discovered, ere this, that I am the “reverse of a cynick”, now, and have abandoned my misanthopacal views: perhaps you may claim the credit of converting me, by your spirited rallyinus-I’m willing and will not deny it. I wish to convince you that I am not a “miss-and trope”, now- to use one of corporal Buntting phrase-but a “man of the world”- but not, like that illustrous personage, been a member of the “Forty-second” Friday evening. Heigho!- this has been an adventuous week. last night, another boat ride(after 9 o’clock) with a known sort of a companion-full of poetry and book-knowledge.
our canoe was birch-bark, which glided along the watter like a “thing of life”. We amused ourselve, in the outset, by a mental colloquy- a literary exercise-discanting upon the merits of Byron, Goethe, Scott and others-at  length we turned for amusement to physical execsise by trying our nautical skill in rowing, in tact and turn and a multiplicity of evolutions, until the dexterity of one of our turns, skiped the light canoe from beneath us and turned us, in jolly companionship, into the watter. I had apprehensions for my own safety nor that of my companion, whom I tho’t could swim, and allmy solictude was upon getting the boat ashore-but I was mistaken-he could not swim-I turned rond to look for him & to my astonishment, beheld him in the middle of the stream gasping, in the last throe, for breath-I sprang to his assistance, drew him ashore & saved him. You may judge with what sensations we returned to our lodgings.

       When I commenced this letter, I intended to have given you some moral reflections but upon reflection, I tho’t I had not the ability to “illustrate” my ideas so fully as I should wish, & so abandoned it. You have given me a happy “illustration” truly- whose character is the most fully illustrated Miss D’s or the Boys, ha.

(P.S. will you give the enclosed paper to Weld?) Yours Adams