16 March 1842
adams-john10 Neal Millikan Smithsonian Institution
80 Washington, Wednesday 16. March 1842

16. IV. Wednesday.

Mr Dickens came into the house yesterday and took leave of me, then intending to go immediately to Baltimore: but afterwards changed his purpose, and went with Mrs Dickens last Evening in the Steamer to Norfolk— Mrs Dickens had on Sunday requested of me an autograph, which I had promised. I wrote it last evening, and directed it to Baltimore—but it was delivered here before their departure. William Johnson dined with us and went in the Evening with Mr and Mrs Angier, Mrs John Adams, and Elizabeth C. Adams to the drawing-room; unusually crowded in consequence of the presence of Dickens, and of Washington Irving, recently appointed Mr Plenipotentiary to Spain— William Johnson left the city, this morning with the early cars, for Baltimore on his return home to Utica— Met this morning the select Committee on the Smithsonian bequest— Present Adams, Underwood, Habersham, B. Randall, Truman Smith, and Charles J. Ingersoll— Absent Houston, Bowne, and Hunter— The Bill reported by the Committee in February 1840. was considered and the first three sections debated, and materially amended; adjourned to Saturday next at 10. A.M— In the house Fillmore moves to postpone the further consideration of the general appropriation Bill, to take up the loan Bill— Question made of the power of the house to change the order of business in the Committee— The house went into Committee— Briggs in the chair.— Fillmore moves to postpone the appropriation Bill; and take up the Loan Bill— Briggs decides the motion is not in order. Fillmore appeals from the Chairman’s decision, which is reversed by Tellers, 92 to 76— Loan Bill taken up— Wise moves to extend the term from 12 to 15 years, and starts a long debate— Opposed on all sides—only 34 votes in its favour, one of which was mine— Amendment offered authorising the sale of the stocks under par—another copious debate; most inflammatory— Wise makes a venomous charge upon the chairman of the Committee of Ways and Means— Caruthers, Pendleton M’Keon, Underwood, Committee rise and the house adjourn—1/2 past 3. The report of the Committee of Elections in favour of Joshua A. Lowell, was taken up, and the Resolution that he is entitled to his Seat, adopted after an acquiescing speech, by Benjamin Randall, and the aid of the Previous question.