874. Stephen Higginson to Nathan Dane
Boston, 22 May 1788 (excerpt)1

… the Constitution I am convinced will be adopted; & the more I see & know of this people the more I am satisfied that it will alone save us from absolute ruin. the belief of its obtaining has very [much] assisted to check the licentious Spirits in this State. from this & other Causes our people have become cool & steady, the sober reason of thinking men now guides them. hence our Elections have this year been wiser than we have known for several years. we shall have a better house, I expect than we have known since the revolution. Insurgency is almost extirpated from the Breasts even of the Inhabitants of Worcester County.—Lincoln failed of a choice at large by a very small number, about 200. he had a majority of votes, I am told, but they were not returned in Season. he failed by the base conduct of the friends of Adams, or some of them; they published the most impudent Lie I [have] ever known; & by it several Towns who would have been nearly unanimous for Lincoln were induced to vote for Adams. I mean, that the friends of those two persons had met in this Town, & agreed to push wholly for the latter, as being the most popular & likely to succeed in opposition to Warren. But Lincoln will be chosen by the two houses, I think. federal measures will this year be popular; & some servile Tools to the former Insurgents will have to tack about, if they mean to pursue their plan of rising to conspicuous Stations by force of popularity. …

1. RC, Dane Papers, Beverly Historical Society. Printed: “Letters of Stephen Higginson, 1783–1804,” Annual Report of the American Historical Association for the Year 1896 (2 vols., Washington, 1897), I, 760–62.