John Adams letter to Abigail Adams, 14 January 1777


Hartford, 14 January, 1777.

IT is now generally believed that General Washington has killed and taken at least two thousand of Mr. Howe's army since Christmas. Indeed the evidence of it is from the General's own letters. You know I ever thought Mr. Howe's march through the Jerseys a rash step. It has proved so. But how much more so would it have been thought, if the Americans could all have viewed it in that light, and exerted themselves, as they might and ought The whole flock would infallibly have been taken in the net

The little nest of hornets in Rhode Island ! Is it to remain unmolested this winter ? The honor of New England is concerned. If they are not ousted, I will never again glory in being a New England man. There are now New England Generals, officers and soldiers, and if something is not done, any man may, after that, call New England men poltroons, with all my heart.

John Adams

Letters of John Adams, Addressed to His Wife. Edited by His Grandson, Charles Francis Adams, Volume I, 1841