• Charles Francis Adams, Son Of John Quincy Adams, Prevented British From Recognizing Confederacy

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    CHARLES FRANCIS ADAMS (1807-1886) was the son of President John Quincy Adams and grandson of President John Adams about whom he wrote a major biography. Charles Adams was an historical editor, writer, politician and diplomat. He served two terms in the Massachusetts State Senate before running unsuccessfully as the vice-presidential candidate for the Free Soil Party in 1848 on a ticket with former president Martin Van Buren.  During the Civil War, Adams served as the United States Minister to the United Kingdom under Abraham Lincoln. He played a major role in keeping the British government neutral and not recognizing the Confederacy.  Adams became an overseer of Harvard University.


    Offering a one-page, 5 x 7 ¾, ALS, February 25, 1871, Boston, to Mrs. G.T. Winthrop. “My Dear Madam, I have to acknowledge my obligation to you for a copy of the curious little tract printed in England called the “fight at Dame Europa’s School.” It is amusing mainly as an experiment of popular feeling in England, the evidence of which is to be found in the enormous circulation of copies.


    “In contrast with the sarcasms in neutrality which it lavishes, I [will] send you an address lately made by myself at New York containing my opposite sentiments, which I pray you to accept with the…respect of Yours very truly, C.F. Adams.


    Mrs. G.T. Winthrop”


    The Fight at Dame Europa’s School was a satire casting European countries at a time of the Franco-Prussian War as school children and portraying their battles as schoolyard skirmishes. The text is written from a sympathetic French perspective, intended to warn British residents of the threat of a German invasion.


    Vertical fold. Paper mark clip.  Adhesion residue to the back page from having been placed in an album, not affecting the letter page. Image of Adams is from the internet.


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