Skip to main content
Go to accessibility notice


    Abigail Adams arranges the sale of a horse on behalf of her son

    Abigail Adams Autograph Letter Signed. Two pages including address leaf, 7.75" x 9.75", Quincy MA, July 15, 1817. Following her husband's term in office, Abigail and John returned to Quincy where he resumed farming and began writing his autobiography. Here, Mrs. Adams writes to "Ward Nicholas Boylston" in Roxbury, concerning the sale of a horse named Hobby, possibly on behalf of John Quincy who was serving as Ambassador to England at the time.

    In full: "Dear Sir, It was not until yesterday that your Letter to my son reach'd us. I am authorized to say to you, that you may make trial of Hobby, who has been worked rather hard and has not had grain, so that you see him in his worst state, but when he has had a few days rest, and a good master, you will find him a very powerful animal.

    If he should suit you, you may take him at the price we have been offer'd him, one hundred and sixty dollars. We did hold him at 80, but as we know, he will have a kind Master, we the more readily part with him. He has not any nicks, never starts, is perfectly sound and good tempered. I sometimes ride with him and drive myself, but when in spirits he is too powerful for me.

    We hope to see you and Mrs. Boylstone here before you depart for Prince Town - a visit from you never fails to give pleasure to, Your friend and relative, A. Adams."

    Letter is docketed on address leaf: "From Mrs. A. Adams, Lady of Honbl John Adams to Mr. Boylston, 15 July 1817."

    Ward Nicholas Boylston was a merchant, philanthropist, and benefactor of Harvard University. The Boylston family name is prominent in Massachusetts, with a Boston street and a city named in their honor. A distant relative, Ward Boylston's mother was a first cousin of John Adams' mother. Letter is moderately toned with occasional soiling at edges; professional repair to seal tear.

    Shipping, Taxes, Terms and Bidding
    Calculate Standard Domestic Shipping

    Sales Tax information  |  Terms and Conditions

    Bidding Guidelines and Bid Increments

    Glossary of Terms

    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    April, 2011
    8th-9th Friday-Saturday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 8
    Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
    Page Views: 2,325

    Buyer's Premium per Lot:
    19.5% of the successful bid (minimum $14) per lot.

    Sold for: Sign-in or Join (free & quick)

    Heritage membership

    Join Now - It's Free

    1. Past Auction Values (prices, photos, full descriptions, etc.)
    2. Bid online
    3. Free Collector newsletter
    4. Want List with instant e-mail notifications
    5. Reduced auction commissions when you resell your
    Consign now
    • Cash Advances
    • More Bidders
    • Trusted Experts
    • Over 200,000 Satisfied Consignors Since 1976
    Consign to the 2018 November 1 - 2 Space Exploration - Dallas.

    Learn about consigning with us

    You reach a customer base that is in many ways completely unknown to the major auction houses, and your marketing to this base is as professional as one could hope for. As I continue to wind down my holdings.
    Michael Z.,
    Hawthorne, NY
    View More Testimonials receives more traffic than any other auction house website. (Source:

    Video tutorial

    Getting the most out of search

    Recent auctions

    2018 June 10 Arms & Armor, Civil War & Militaria Signature Auction - Dallas
    2018 June 10 Arms & Armor, Civil War & Militaria Signature Auction - Dallas
    REALIZED $615,551