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John Adams to Mathew Carey

18 Sept. 1813

Sir Quincy Sep 18th 1813

Your favour of the 6th. has given me much pleasure; had I lived with Dr: Johnson I would have given him a guinea a piece his usual price for two sermons; one upon “Let your light shine before men” the other upon Let not your left hand know what your right hand performs.” They are perfectly reconcila\e/ble though it may be some what difficult in practice to comply with both precepts in sincerity.

There have been some examples of generous donations in this country Harvard founded a College at Cambridge, Coddington a school at mount Wollaston, Dummer an Academy at Byfield, Phanuel a famous Hall in Boston, Stoughton a College at Cambridge, Phillips an academy at Exeter, Phillips an accademy at Andover, Bowdoins a university in Maine, Bartlet a large additional donation to the Andover Institution &c, I write currente calamo the few instances near me, what others there may be in other States I have not enquired.

Several causes have probably damped this ardor 1 Lotteries, 2 Corporations 3 an apprehension of the accusation of an aspiring ambition to celebrate family names and establish families &c.

Many libraries have been begun Private subcriptions and donations have been more numerous and abundant. I wish you could have informed me that Mr. Jones had paid you rather than promised to pay you the money is in his hands if he does not pay you I pray you to let me know it I know not why he did not pay instead of promising.

I have received no communications concerning our naval history; but those I have sent to you. There is a damper. I know the cause. send out your second edition as soon as possible and promise a third. there must be no fooling on this march. If the President and Congress do not exert every nerve in naval operations on the Lakes and on the Ocean; the vengeance of Heaven and Earth will soon be visible and palpable on this country. Is this country inhabited by rational creatures or by Idiots? to this question I very seriously subscribe / the name of

John Adams

LbC (MHi: Adams Papers).
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