Facts, information and articles about John Adams, the second U.S. President

John Adams Facts

Born

10/30/1735

Died

7/4/1826

Years Of Service

1797-1801

Spouse

Abigail Adams

John Adams Articles

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Brooklyn Museum - Portrait of John Adams - Samuel Finley Breese Morse - overall
Brooklyn Museum - Portrait of John Adams - Samuel Finley Breese Morse - overall
John Adams summary: John Adams and John Quincy Adams are often confused as being the same person, when in actuality it is father and son. John Adams was the 2nd president of the United States. He was born in Massachusetts in 1735, and he later attended Harvard College. He studied law after his graduation, and in 1758, he became a member of the Massachusetts bar. Among his legal triumphs was his defense of the eight British soldiers that were part of the Boston Massacre. Adams later became a member of the Continental Congress, where he was a member of the committee responsible for writing the Declaration of Independence. He later served as a diplomat, along with Benjamin Franklin, to France and he became an American minister to Britain.

From 1789 to 1797, he served as vice president to George Washington before going on to become the second President of the US. He was a member of the Federalist Party, and he defeated Thomas Jefferson in the election of 1796 for president. Losing by only three electoral votes, Jefferson became his vice president. In terms of his accomplishments as president, Adams is best known for maintaining peace between the United States and France. John Adams lived the last few months of his presidency in the White House, which was not completely finished while he was in office. John Adams lost his bid for re-election to Thomas Jefferson in 1800. His son, John Quincy Adams, won the presidential election in 1824; Adams died two years later.


 

Articles Featuring John Adams From History Net Magazines

The Patriot Who Refused to Sign the Declaration of IndependenceJohn Dickinson was America’s most renowned patriot until he refused to sign the Declaration of Independence.
Upside-Down BailoutWall Street bailed out the feds when J.P. Morgan saved the U.S. Treasury from collapse in 1895.
Debunking Boston Tea Party MythsThe Boston Tea Party wasn’t about higher taxes. It was America’s first response to too big to fail.
George Washington Pays Homage to YahwehSimon Schama describes President George Washington’s 1790 visit to Newport, RI, to promote support for the Bill of Rights. His visit provoked an exchange with a member of the Touro Synagogue about the young country’s commitment to religious freedom.
Uneasy About Alcohol – America and the Booze QuestionThe Pilgrims drank. So did the Founding Fathers. Prohibition couldn’t curb Americans’ thirst for booze, and years of teetotaling tirades fell on deaf ears. So why did alcohol become the focus of one of this nation’s greatest moral crusades?
John Adams Miniseries on HBO (Review)Preview of HBO's John Adams miniseries based on the book by David McCullough.
The Adams FamilyLong before the Kennedys, another patrician Massachusetts clan, John and Abigail Adams and their descendants, scaled the heights of triumph and plumbed the depths of tragedy in full public view.
George Washington: Defeated at the Battle of Long IslandAfter the American commander in chief suffered a humiliating defeat at the Battle of Long Island, he turned to a crack regiment from Massachusetts to save the army.
Benjamin Franklin: America’s InventorBorn 300 years ago, Benjamin Franklin remains perhaps the most inquisitive, creative and prodigious inventor, innovator and thinker ever born on American soil. But which of Franklin's many 'inventions' was actually his most important? A scientist offers a somewhat surprising answer.
George Washington: His Final DaysGeorge Washington had fought and won a war, served two terms as the new nation's first president, and kept that nation on an even keel. After all that, could he be satisfied with retirement on his country estate?
American History: Passage of the Alien and Sedition ActsWhen Congress passed the Alien and Sedition Acts in 1798, it opened a heated debate about the limits of freedom in a free society.
American History: The First Real Two-Party U.S. Presidential Election in 1796When George Washington announced that he would retire from office, he set the stage for the nation's first two-party presidential campaign.
Book Review: THE FIRST AMERICAN: THE LIFE AND TIMES OF BENJAMIN FRANKLIN (by H.W. Brands) : AHITHE FIRST AMERICAN: THE LIFE AND TIMES OF BENJAMIN FRANKLIN, by H.W. Brands, Doubleday, 742 pages, $35.00.Benjamin Franklin’s life spanned an era of radical change, beginning at a time when witch trials were routine in the Colonies, and ending in an age when electricity had become the new supernatural force and an independent young nation […]
Book Review: SETTING THE WORLD ABLAZE: WASHINGTON, ADAMS, AND JEFFERSON AND THE AMERICAN REVOLUTION (by John Ferling) : AHISETTING THE WORLD ABLAZE: WASHINGTON, ADAMS, AND JEFFERSON AND THE AMERICAN REVOLUTION, by John Ferling, Oxford University Press, 372 pages, $27.50.I remember reading, long ago, about an incident involving George Washington and some rather indiscrete advances he made to another man’s wife. It’s not the kind of image that immediately jumps to mind when mention […]
Book Review: EYEWITNESS TO AMERICA: 500 YEARS OF AMERICA IN THE WORDS OF THOSE WHO SAW IT HAPPEN (edited by David Colbert) : AHEYEWITNESS TO AMERICA: 500 YEARS OF AMERICA IN THE WORDS OFTHOSE WHO SAW IT HAPPEN, edited by David Colbert, Pantheon, $30.Gleaning passages from diaries, private letters, and memoirs, Colbert has assembled the words of 300 exceptional men and women who witnessed some of the most decisive and memorable moments in the history of the United […]
Book Review: THE GREAT REPUBLIC: A HISTORY OF AMERICA (by Sir Winston Churchill, edited by Winston S. Churchill) : AHTHE GREAT REPUBLIC: A HISTORY OF AMERICA, by Sir Winston Churchill, edited by Winston S. Churchill, Random House, 460 pages, $25.95.IF ever an Englishman was equipped to explain America, it was Sir Winston Churchill. He had the wisdom of a great statesman, the genius of a great writer, and the passion of a son seeking […]
Book Review: ALEXANDER HAMILTON, AMERICAN (by Richard Brookhiser) : AHALEXANDER HAMILTON, AMERICAN, by Richard Brookhiser, Free Press, 240 pages, $25.Alexander Hamilton was 32 years old when he took over the new nation’s books as first secretary of the United States Treasury. They were in bad shape, but he balanced them and audaciously charted a system of law and finance, thus almost single-handedly lifting America […]
Letters to American History: April ’00 LettersTHE REAL THOMAS PAINE? In his article on Thomas Paine ("Revolution with Pen & Ink," February 2000), William Kashatus is to be lauded for shedding some light on the enormous role Thomas Paine played in the American Revolution–a role shamefully ignored in this country. The author is quite correct in depicting a man dedicated to […]
The Final Days: December ’99 American History FeatureThe Final Days George Washington had fought and won a war, served two terms as the new nation’s first president, and kept that nation on an even keel. After all that, could he be satisfied with retirement on his country estate? by John Ferling Festive crowds had greeted George Washington on many occasions when he […]
Order vs. Liberty: October ’98 American History FeatureWhen Congress passed the Alien and Sedition Acts in 1798, it opened a heated debate about the limits of freedom in a free society. By Larry Gragg On July 4, 1798, the citizens of the capital city of Philadelphia turned out in large numbers to celebrate the nation’s independence day. While militia companies marched through […]
1796: The First Real Election – Cover Page: December ’96 American History Feature1796: The First Real Election BY JOHN FERLING WHEN GEORGE WASHINGTON ANNOUNCED THAT HE WOULD RETIRE FROM OFFICE, HE SET THE STAGEFOR THE NATION’S FIRST TWO-PARTY PRESIDENTIALCAMPAIGN. On the day in April 1789 that he took the oath of office at Federal Hall in New York City as the first president of the United States, […]