March 2, 1776
Abigail Adams writes John Adams about reading Common Sense.
charmed with the sentiments of ‘Common Sense,’
and wonder how an honest heart, one who wishes the
welfare of his country and the happiness of
posterity, can hesitate one moment at adopting them. I want to know how those sentiments are
received in [the Continental] Congress? I dare say
there would be no difficulty in procuring a vote and
instructions from all the assemblies in
March 4-5, 1776
Washington takes advantage of spring weather and trumps the British siege of
when his men haul more than twelve artillery pieces onto Dorchester
Heights in the middle of the night.
Henry Knox had recently brought this artillery from
New York’s Fort
To cover their movements, patriots noisily fire from another
location to distract the British military occupying
Boston. When the British see these cannon on
Dorchester Heights, they realize they can no longer
safely bring supplies in and out of Boston Harbor.
Will the redcoats fight? Or will they leave Boston?
No one yet knows.
March 7, 1776
Abigail Adams isn’t sure that all is yet well in
Boston, even though
Washington’s men intimidated the British by posting
artillery on Dorchester
Heights. Not understanding or seeing
the outcome just yet, she writes to John Adams.
“This day our militia are all returning, without
effecting anything more than taking possession of
Dorchester Hill. I hope it is wise and just, but
from all the muster and stir, I hoped and expected
more important and decisive scenes; I would not have
suffered all I have for two such hills. Ever since
the taking of that we have had a perfect calm, nor
can I learn yet what effect it has had in town Boston.”
March 10, 1776
“I feel still
more for my bleeding country men who are hazarding
their lives and their limbs. -- A most terrible and
incessant cannonade from half after 8 till 6 this
morning.” Abigail Adams writes to her husband, John Adams.
March 17, 1776
military evacuates Boston
after an eleven-month siege.
“The town, although it
has suffered greatly, is not in so bad a state as I
expected to find it,” General Washington
March 19, 1776
Some people mistakenly think that John Adams is the author Common Sense.
In a letter, he analyzes Common Sense at his
wife Abigail’s request.
“You ask, what is thought of
Common Sense [in the
Continental Congress]. Sensible men think there are
some whims, some sophisms, some artful addresses to
superstitious notions, some keen attempts upon the
passions in this pamphlet. But all agree there is a
great deal of good sense, delivered in a clear,
simple, concise and nervous [courageous] style. His
[whoever the author is] sentiments of the abilities
America, and of the difficulty of a reconciliation with Great Britain
are generally approved.”
March 31, 1776
Abigail Adams writes to
John Adams to remember the ladies.
“I long to hear
that you have declared an independency -- and by the
way in the new code of laws which I suppose it will
be necessary for you to make. I desire you would
remember the ladies, and be more generous and
favorable to them than your ancestors. . . If
particular care and attention is not paid to the
ladies we are determined to foment a rebellion, and
will not hold ourselves bound by any laws in which
we have no voice or representation.”
With the British out of
Boston, Abigail begins to feel more
optimistic about spring.
very differently at the approach of spring to what I
did a month ago. We knew not then whether we could
plant or sow with safety. . . but now we feel as if
we might sit under our own vine. . . I think the sun
looks brighter, the birds sing more melodiously. We
feel a temporary peace.”