10 Interesting Facts about Abigail Adams

One of these following facts about Abigail Adams should probably give you a lot information about her. Abigail Adams was the wife of John Adams, the first Vice President and second President, of the United States, and the mother of John Quincy Adams, the sixth President. Abigail Adams is now designated the first Second Lady and second First Lady of the United States, although these titles were not in use at the time. Furthermore, to get to know more about her, here are some other facts about Abigail Adams you might be interested in.

Facts about Abigail Adams 1: First Lady

Adams’s life is one of the most documented of the first ladies: she is remembered for the many letters she wrote to her husband while he stayed in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, during the Continental Congresses. John frequently sought the advice of Abigail on many matters, and their letters are filled with intellectual discussions on government and politics.

Facts about Abigail Adams 2: Early Life

Abigail Adams was born at the North Parish Congregational Church in Weymouth, Massachussetts, to The Reverend William Smith (1707-1783) and Elizabeth Smith. On her mother’s side she was descended from the Quincy family, a well-known political family in the Massachusetts colony.

Facts about Abigail Adams - Abigail Adams
Facts about Abigail Adams – Abigail Adams

Facts about Abigail Adams 3: Family

Smith married Elizabeth Quincy in 1742, and together they had four children, including three daughters: one born in 1743, Abigail born in 1744 and another born in 1745. Their only son, born in 1746, died of alcoholism in 1787. In 1764 Smith presided over the marriage of John Adams and his daughter. In July of 1775 his wife Elizabeth, with whom he had been married for 33 years, died of smallpox.

Facts about Abigail Adams 4: Marriage

As third cousins,Abigail and John had known each other since they were children. In 1762, John accompanied his friend Richard Cranch to the Smith household. Cranch was engaged to Adams’ older sister, Mary. John was quickly attracted to the petite, shy, 17-year-old brunette who was forever bent over some book. He was surprised to learn she knew so much about poetry, philosophy and politics, considered unusual for a woman at the time.

Facts about Abigail Adams - Letter from Thomas Jefferson to Abigail Adams
Facts about Abigail Adams – Letter from Thomas Jefferson to Abigail Adams

Facts about Abigail Adams 5: Europe

In 1784, she and her daughter Nabby joined her husband and her eldest son, John Quincy, at her husband’s diplomatic post in Paris. After 1785, she filled the role of wife of the first U.S. minister to the Court of St. James’s (Britain). They returned in 1788 to a house known as the “Old House” in Quincy, which she set about vigorously enlarging and remodeling

Facts about Abigail Adams 6: Women’s Right

Adams was an advocate of married women’s property rights and more opportunities for women, particularly in the field of education. Women, she believed, should not submit to laws not made in their interest, nor should they be content with the simple role of being companions to their husbands. They should educate themselves and thus be recognized for their intellectual capabilities, so they could guide and influence the lives of their children and husbands.

Facts about Abigail Adams - Portrait
Facts about Abigail Adams – Portrait

Facts about Abigail Adams 7: Slavery

Along with her husband, Adams believed that slavery was evil and a threat to the American democratic experiment. A letter written by her on March 31, 1776, explained that she doubted most of the Virginians had such “passion for Liberty” as they claimed they did, since they “deprive[d] their fellow Creatures” of freedom.

Facts about Abigail Adams 8: Religious Beliefs

Adams, as well as her husband, was an active member of First Parish Church in Quincy, which became Unitarian in doctrine by 1753. Like her husband, her theological views evolved over the course of her life. In a letter to her son near the end of her life, dated May 5, 1816, she wrote of her religious beliefs.

Facts about Abigail Adams - Statue
Facts about Abigail Adams – Statue

Facts about Abigail Adams 9: Death

Adams died on October 28, 1818, of typhoid fever. She is buried beside her husband in a crypt located in the United First Parish Church (also known as the Church of the Presidents) in Quincy, Massachusetts. She was 73 years old, exactly two weeks shy of her 74th birthday.

Facts about Abigail Adams 10: Legacy

Historian Joseph Ellis has found that the 1200 letters between John and Abigail “constituted a treasure trove of unexpected intimacy and candor, more revealing than any other correspondence between a prominent American husband and wife in American history”. Ellis (2011) says that Abigail, although self-educated, was a better and more colorful letter-writer than John, even though John was one of the best letter-writers of the age.

Facts about Abigail Adams - Later life
Facts about Abigail Adams – Later life

Hope you would find those Abigail Adams facts really interesting, useful and helpful for your additional reading.

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