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September 01 , 2007

President Adams: The Lives and Legacies of John & John Quincy Adams


*Includes pictures of John, John Quincy, and important people, places, and events in their lives.*Includes several letters and diary entries from both men and Abigail Adams. *Includes a Bibliography for further reading.*Includes a Table of Contents.John Adams has become one of the more popular presidents in history relatively recently, but it was not always so. For most of his life he was seen as a bit of an outsider, different from his fellow first presidents in his temperament, birth, life and politics. Adams and his son were the only presidents out of the first seven who were born north of the Mason Dixon line, and he was not an easy man to understand or work with. Not only did he have few friends, but he also often fell into long term quarrels with those he had. Politically, Adams shared Washingtons preference for Britain as well as his preference of non-interference. However, while he was certainly the more significant man in his work and his governing, he could never seem to move out of Washingtons shadow. Even worse, his presidency was seen as threatening to the very essence of American liberty with the Alien and Sedition Acts, and his loss to Jefferson in 1800 was a repudiation of the Federalists that left Jeffersonians in power until John Quincy Adams was elected in 1824. His presidency is still viewed relatively unfavorably.Adams remained a celebrated figure in Boston for all the work he did in Massachusetts before and after the Revolution, but his national reputation has experienced quite a renaissance over the past decade, beginning with David Mcculloughs best selling biography in 2001, followed in 2008 by the popular HBO series based on it. Then, in 2010, Dearest Friend, a record of the correspondence between Adams and his wife Abigail solidified his position as one of the most darling Founding Fathers of the 21st Century.Few men in American history have a record anywhere near comparable to John Adams, but one of them happened to be Adamss own son, John Quincy Adams. And yet, few Americans are familiar with him aside from the fact that he was his fathers son and the 6th president of the United States. John Quincy Adams set a lot of firsts for his country. In addition to being the first son of a president to become president himself, John Quincy Adams also managed to be a U.S. Senator, a U.S. House Representative, a Secretary of State, and an ambassador to several countries. Though he is known primarily for his presidential races against Andrew Jackson, there is a general consensus among historians that he is one of Americas greatest and most skilled diplomats, responsible for successes such as the Treaty of Ghent (which ended the War of 1812), the annexation of Florida from Spain, and the Monroe Doctrine. Along with his substantive record, Adams was one of the foremost ideological thinkers of the 19th century, particularly in his adamant opposition to slavery. Adams brought the issue to the forefront in government whenever he could, and he predicted the Civil War that would come less than 15 years after his death: The conflict between the principle of liberty and the fact of slavery is coming gradually to an issue. Slavery has now the power, and falls into convulsions at the approach of freedom. That the fall of slavery is predetermined in the counsels of Omnipotence I cannot doubt...But the conflict will be terrible, and the progress of improvement perhaps retrograde before its final progress to consummation.President Adams chronicles the lives and careers of both presidents. Along with pictures of important people, places, and events in her life, you will learn about John and John Quincy like you never have before.
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