112 Facts About John Adams

1. John Adams was an American statesman, attorney, diplomat, writer, and Founding Father who served as the second president of the United States from 1797 to 1801.

FactSnippet No. 242,059 - en.wikipedia.org

2. John Adams was twice elected vice president, serving from 1789 to 1797 in a prestigious role with little power.

FactSnippet No. 242,060 - en.wikipedia.org

3. John Adams was a dedicated diarist and regularly corresponded with many important contemporaries, including his wife and adviser Abigail John Adams as well as his friend and rival Thomas Jefferson.

FactSnippet No. 242,061 - en.wikipedia.org

4. Lawyer and political activist prior to the Revolution, John Adams was devoted to the right to counsel and presumption of innocence.

FactSnippet No. 242,062 - en.wikipedia.org

5. John Adams was a Massachusetts delegate to the Continental Congress and became a leader of the revolution.

FactSnippet No. 242,063 - en.wikipedia.org

6. John Adams assisted Jefferson in drafting the Declaration of Independence in 1776.

FactSnippet No. 242,064 - en.wikipedia.org

7. John Adams was the primary author of the Massachusetts Constitution in 1780, which influenced the United States constitution, as did his essay Thoughts on Government.

FactSnippet No. 242,065 - en.wikipedia.org

8. John Adams was elected to two terms as vice president under President George Washington and was elected as the United States' second president in 1796.

FactSnippet No. 242,066 - en.wikipedia.org

9. John Adams was the only president elected under the banner of the Federalist Party.

FactSnippet No. 242,067 - en.wikipedia.org

10. John Adams signed the controversial Alien and Sedition Acts and built up the Army and Navy in the undeclared naval war with France.

FactSnippet No. 242,068 - en.wikipedia.org

11. John Adams was born on the family farm in Braintree, Massachusetts.

FactSnippet No. 242,069 - en.wikipedia.org

12. John Adams decided to become a lawyer to further those ends, writing his father that he found among lawyers "noble and gallant achievements" but, among the clergy, the "pretended sanctity of some absolute dunces".

FactSnippet No. 242,070 - en.wikipedia.org

13. In 1756, John Adams began reading law under James Putnam, a leading lawyer in Worcester.

FactSnippet No. 242,071 - en.wikipedia.org

14. John Adams developed an early habit of writing about events and impressions of men in his diary; this included James Otis Jr.

FactSnippet No. 242,072 - en.wikipedia.org

15. In 1763, John Adams explored various aspects of political theory in seven essays written for Boston newspapers.

FactSnippet No. 242,073 - en.wikipedia.org

16. John Adams offered them anonymously, under the pen name "Humphrey Ploughjogger", and in them ridiculed the selfish thirst for power he perceived among the Massachusetts colonial elite.

FactSnippet No. 242,074 - en.wikipedia.org

17. John Adams rose to prominence leading widespread opposition to the Stamp Act of 1765.

FactSnippet No. 242,075 - en.wikipedia.org

18. John Adams authored the "Braintree Instructions" in 1765, in the form of a letter sent to the representatives of Braintree in the Massachusetts legislature.

FactSnippet No. 242,076 - en.wikipedia.org

19. When no other attorneys would come to their defense, John Adams was impelled to do so despite the risk to his reputation – he believed no person should be denied the right to counsel and a fair trial.

FactSnippet No. 242,077 - en.wikipedia.org

20. In 1771, John Adams moved his family to Braintree but kept his office in Boston.

FactSnippet No. 242,078 - en.wikipedia.org

21. John Adams purchased a large brick house on Queen Street, not far from his office.

FactSnippet No. 242,079 - en.wikipedia.org

22. John Adams wrote in the Gazette that these measures would destroy judicial independence and place the colonial government in closer subjugation to the Crown.

FactSnippet No. 242,080 - en.wikipedia.org

23. John Adams applauded the destruction of the tea, calling it the "grandest Event" in the history of the colonial protest movement, and writing in his diary that the dutied tea's destruction was an "absolutely and indispensably" necessary action.

FactSnippet No. 242,081 - en.wikipedia.org

24. John Adams sought the repeal of objectionable policies, but at this early stage he continued to see benefits in maintaining the ties with Britain.

FactSnippet No. 242,082 - en.wikipedia.org

25. John Adams renewed his push for the right to a jury trial.

FactSnippet No. 242,083 - en.wikipedia.org

26. John Adams complained of what he considered the pretentiousness of the other delegates, writing to Abigail, "I believe if it was moved and seconded that We should come to a Resolution that Three and two make five We should be entertained with Logick and Rhetorick, Law, History, Politicks and Mathematicks, concerning the Subject for two whole Days, and then We should pass the Resolution unanimously in the Affirmative.

FactSnippet No. 242,084 - en.wikipedia.org

27. John Adams moved cautiously at first, noting that the Congress was divided between Loyalists, those favoring independence, and those hesitant to take any position.

FactSnippet No. 242,085 - en.wikipedia.org

28. John Adams became convinced that Congress was moving in the proper direction – away from Great Britain.

FactSnippet No. 242,086 - en.wikipedia.org

29. Publicly, John Adams supported "reconciliation if practicable," but privately agreed with Benjamin Franklin's confidential observation that independence was inevitable.

FactSnippet No. 242,087 - en.wikipedia.org

30. John Adams praised Washington's "skill and experience" as well as his "excellent universal character.

FactSnippet No. 242,088 - en.wikipedia.org

31. John Adams kept busy on the floor of the Congress, helping push through a plan to outfit armed ships to launch raids on enemy vessels.

FactSnippet No. 242,089 - en.wikipedia.org

32. John Adams drafted the preamble to the Lee resolution of colleague Richard Henry Lee.

FactSnippet No. 242,090 - en.wikipedia.org

33. John Adams chose himself, Jefferson, Benjamin Franklin, Robert R Livingston and Roger Sherman.

FactSnippet No. 242,091 - en.wikipedia.org

34. John Adams was referred to as a "one man war department," working up to eighteen-hour days and mastering the details of raising, equipping and fielding an army under civilian control.

FactSnippet No. 242,092 - en.wikipedia.org

35. John Adams kept extensive correspondences with a wide range of Continental Army officers concerning supplies, munitions, and tactics.

FactSnippet No. 242,093 - en.wikipedia.org

36. John Adams emphasized to them the role of discipline in keeping an army orderly.

FactSnippet No. 242,094 - en.wikipedia.org

37. John Adams was worn out by the rigor of his duties and longed to return home.

FactSnippet No. 242,095 - en.wikipedia.org

38. John Adams advocated in Congress that independence was necessary to establish trade, and conversely, trade was essential for the attainment of independence; he specifically urged negotiation of a commercial treaty with France.

FactSnippet No. 242,096 - en.wikipedia.org

39. John Adams was then appointed, along with Franklin, Dickinson, Benjamin Harrison of Virginia and Robert Morris of Pennsylvania, "to prepare a plan of treaties to be proposed to foreign powers.

FactSnippet No. 242,097 - en.wikipedia.org

40. The ship was pursued by several British vessels, with John Adams taking up arms to help capture one.

FactSnippet No. 242,098 - en.wikipedia.org

41. John Adams was annoyed by the other two commissioners: Lee, whom he thought paranoid and cynical, and the popular and influential Franklin, whom he found lethargic and overly deferential and accommodating to the French.

FactSnippet No. 242,099 - en.wikipedia.org

42. John Adams assumed a less visible role but helped manage the delegation's finances and record-keeping.

FactSnippet No. 242,100 - en.wikipedia.org

43. In late 1779, John Adams was appointed as the sole minister charged with negotiations to establish a commercial treaty with Britain and end the war.

FactSnippet No. 242,101 - en.wikipedia.org

44. Constant disagreement between Lee and Franklin eventually resulted in John Adams assuming the role of tie-breaker in almost all votes on commission business.

FactSnippet No. 242,102 - en.wikipedia.org

45. John Adams increased his usefulness by mastering the French language.

FactSnippet No. 242,103 - en.wikipedia.org

46. In contrast to Franklin, John Adams viewed the Franco-American alliance pessimistically.

FactSnippet No. 242,104 - en.wikipedia.org

47. The French, John Adams wrote, meant to keep their hands "above our chin to prevent us from drowning, but not to lift our heads out of water.

FactSnippet No. 242,105 - en.wikipedia.org

48. These were needed, John Adams wrote, to contain the British armies in the port cities and contend with the powerful British Navy.

FactSnippet No. 242,106 - en.wikipedia.org

49. France, John Adams believed, needed to commit itself more fully to the alliance.

FactSnippet No. 242,107 - en.wikipedia.org

50. One of the few other existing republics at the time, John Adams thought it might be sympathetic to the American cause.

FactSnippet No. 242,108 - en.wikipedia.org

51. The house that John Adams bought during this stay in the Netherlands became the first American embassy on foreign soil.

FactSnippet No. 242,109 - en.wikipedia.org

52. John Adams was surprised at how much the Americans could extract.

FactSnippet No. 242,110 - en.wikipedia.org

53. John Adams was appointed the first American ambassador to Great Britain in 1785.

FactSnippet No. 242,111 - en.wikipedia.org

54. John Adams received 34 electoral college votes in the election, second place behind Washington, who was a unanimous choice with 69 votes.

FactSnippet No. 242,112 - en.wikipedia.org

55. John Adams finished well ahead of all others except Washington, but was still offended by Washington receiving more than twice as many votes.

FactSnippet No. 242,113 - en.wikipedia.org

56. Early in his term, John Adams became deeply involved in a lengthy Senate controversy over the official titles for the president and executive officers of the new government.

FactSnippet No. 242,114 - en.wikipedia.org

57. John Adams favored the adoption of the style of Highness for the president.

FactSnippet No. 242,115 - en.wikipedia.org

58. John Adams said that the distinctions were necessary because the highest office of the United States must be marked with "dignity and splendor" to command respect.

FactSnippet No. 242,116 - en.wikipedia.org

59. John Adams was widely derided for his combative nature and stubbornness, especially as he actively debated and lectured the senators.

FactSnippet No. 242,117 - en.wikipedia.org

60. John Adams likened Adams to "a monkey just put into breeches.

FactSnippet No. 242,118 - en.wikipedia.org

61. John Adams supported Washington's policies against opposition from anti-Federalists and Republicans.

FactSnippet No. 242,119 - en.wikipedia.org

62. When he returned in 1795 with a peace treaty on terms unfavorable to the United States, John Adams urged Washington to sign it to prevent war.

FactSnippet No. 242,120 - en.wikipedia.org

63. John Adams predicted in a letter to Abigail that ratification would deeply divide the nation.

FactSnippet No. 242,121 - en.wikipedia.org

64. John Adams coerced South Carolina Federalist electors, pledged to vote for "favorite son" Pinckney, to scatter their second votes among candidates other than Adams.

FactSnippet No. 242,122 - en.wikipedia.org

65. John Adams wrote shortly after the election that Hamilton was a "proud Spirited, conceited, aspiring Mortal always pretending to Morality, with as debauched Morals as old Franklin who is more his Model than any one I know.

FactSnippet No. 242,123 - en.wikipedia.org

66. John Adams spent much of his term at his Massachusetts home Peacefield, preferring the quietness of domestic life to business at the capital.

FactSnippet No. 242,124 - en.wikipedia.org

67. John Adams ignored the political patronage and office-seekers which other officeholders utilized.

FactSnippet No. 242,125 - en.wikipedia.org

68. John Adams maintained the economic programs of Hamilton, who regularly consulted with key cabinet members, especially the powerful Treasury Secretary, Oliver Wolcott Jr.

FactSnippet No. 242,126 - en.wikipedia.org

69. John Adams was in other respects quite independent of his cabinet, often making decisions despite opposition from it.

FactSnippet No. 242,127 - en.wikipedia.org

70. When John Adams entered office, he decided to continue Washington's policy of staying out of the war.

FactSnippet No. 242,128 - en.wikipedia.org

71. John Adams announced that he would send a peace commission to France but simultaneously called for a military buildup to counter any potential French threat.

FactSnippet No. 242,129 - en.wikipedia.org

72. John Adams was depicted as an eagle holding an olive branch in one talon and the "emblems of defense" in the other.

FactSnippet No. 242,130 - en.wikipedia.org

73. John Adams sent a message to Congress asking for a renewal of the nation's defenses.

FactSnippet No. 242,131 - en.wikipedia.org

74. John Adams reached the height of his popularity as many in the country called for full-scale war against the French.

FactSnippet No. 242,132 - en.wikipedia.org

75. John Adams resisted Secretary of State Timothy Pickering's attempts to deport aliens, although many left on their own, largely in response to the hostile environment.

FactSnippet No. 242,133 - en.wikipedia.org

76. Still, the acts John Adams signed into law energized and unified the Republican Party while doing little to unite the Federalists.

FactSnippet No. 242,134 - en.wikipedia.org

77. John Adams pursued a strategy whereby America harassed French ships in an effort sufficient to stem the French assaults on American interests.

FactSnippet No. 242,135 - en.wikipedia.org

78. John Adams was pressured by Federalists to appoint Hamilton, who had served as Washington's aide-de-camp during the Revolution, to command the army.

FactSnippet No. 242,136 - en.wikipedia.org

79. Distrustful of Hamilton and fearing a plot to subvert his administration, John Adams chose Washington without consulting him.

FactSnippet No. 242,137 - en.wikipedia.org

80. John Adams sent Secretary of War James McHenry to Mount Vernon to convince Washington to accept the post.

FactSnippet No. 242,138 - en.wikipedia.org

81. John Adams relented and agreed to submit to the Senate the names of Hamilton, Pinckney, and Knox, in that order, although final decisions of rank would be reserved to John Adams.

FactSnippet No. 242,139 - en.wikipedia.org

82. John Adams knew of the backlash that he would receive from Federalists should he continue his course, and he capitulated, despite bitter resentment.

FactSnippet No. 242,140 - en.wikipedia.org

83. John Adams exerted effective control over the War Department, taking over supplies for the army.

FactSnippet No. 242,141 - en.wikipedia.org

84. John Adams made his first official visit to the nation's new seat of government in early June 1800.

FactSnippet No. 242,142 - en.wikipedia.org

85. Jefferson was portrayed as an apostle of liberty and man of the people, while John Adams was labelled a monarchist.

FactSnippet No. 242,143 - en.wikipedia.org

86. John Adams vilified the President's "disgusting egotism" and "ungovernable temper.

FactSnippet No. 242,144 - en.wikipedia.org

87. Anxious to rejoin Abigail, who had already left for Massachusetts, John Adams departed the White House in the predawn hours of March 4, 1801, and did not attend Jefferson's inauguration.

FactSnippet No. 242,145 - en.wikipedia.org

88. John Adams appointed two US Supreme Court associate justices during his term in office: Bushrod Washington, the nephew of American founding father and President George Washington, and Alfred Moore.

FactSnippet No. 242,146 - en.wikipedia.org

89. Regardless, John Adams believed that the choice should be someone "in the full vigor of middle age" who could counter what might be a long line of successive Republican presidents.

FactSnippet No. 242,147 - en.wikipedia.org

90. John Adams filled the vacancies created in this statute by appointing a series of judges, whom his opponents called the "Midnight Judges," just days before his term expired.

FactSnippet No. 242,148 - en.wikipedia.org

91. John Adams published a three-year marathon of letters in the Boston Patriot newspaper, refuting line-by-line Hamilton's 1800 pamphlet.

FactSnippet No. 242,149 - en.wikipedia.org

92. In early 1801, John Adams sent Thomas Jefferson a brief note after returning to Quincy wishing him a happy and prosperous presidency.

FactSnippet No. 242,150 - en.wikipedia.org

93. John Adams accepted this, and the correspondence turned to other matters, particularly philosophy and their daily habits.

FactSnippet No. 242,151 - en.wikipedia.org

94. John Adams remarked, "No man who ever held the office of President would congratulate a friend on obtaining it.

FactSnippet No. 242,152 - en.wikipedia.org

95. On July 4, 1826, the 50th anniversary of the adoption of the Declaration of Independence, John Adams died at Peacefield at approximately 6:20 pm.

FactSnippet No. 242,153 - en.wikipedia.org

96. At 90, John Adams was the longest-lived US president until Ronald Reagan surpassed him in 2001.

FactSnippet No. 242,154 - en.wikipedia.org

97. John Adams advised that the form of government should be chosen to attain the desired ends – the happiness and virtue of the greatest number of people.

FactSnippet No. 242,155 - en.wikipedia.org

98. John Adams wrote that, "There is no good government but what is republican.

FactSnippet No. 242,156 - en.wikipedia.org

99. John Adams served on a committee of three, including Samuel Adams and James Bowdoin, to draft the constitution.

FactSnippet No. 242,157 - en.wikipedia.org

100. John Adams was a strong believer in good education as one of the pillars of the Enlightenment.

FactSnippet No. 242,158 - en.wikipedia.org

101. John Adams believed that people "in a State of Ignorance" were more easily enslaved while those "enlightened with knowledge" would be better able to protect their liberties.

FactSnippet No. 242,159 - en.wikipedia.org

102. John Adams contended that social classes exist in every political society, and that a good government must accept that reality.

FactSnippet No. 242,160 - en.wikipedia.org

103. John Adams was thought to have overlooked this evolution and revealed his continued attachment to the older version of politics.

FactSnippet No. 242,161 - en.wikipedia.org

104. On separation of powers, John Adams wrote that, "Power must be opposed to power, and interest to interest.

FactSnippet No. 242,162 - en.wikipedia.org

105. John Adams spoke out in 1777 against a bill to emancipate slaves in Massachusetts, saying that the issue was presently too divisive, and so the legislation should "sleep for a time.

FactSnippet No. 242,163 - en.wikipedia.org

106. Slavery was abolished in Massachusetts about 1780, when it was forbidden by implication in the Declaration of Rights that John Adams wrote into the Massachusetts Constitution.

FactSnippet No. 242,164 - en.wikipedia.org

107. John Adams was raised in the Congregational church but it was factionalized.

FactSnippet No. 242,165 - en.wikipedia.org

108. Everett concludes that "John Adams strove for a religion based on a common sense sort of reasonableness" and maintained that religion must change and evolve toward perfection.

FactSnippet No. 242,166 - en.wikipedia.org

109. John Adams was sustained in his attempted usurpations by all the New England states and by a powerful public sentiment in each of the Middle States.

FactSnippet No. 242,167 - en.wikipedia.org

110. Gilbert Chinard, in his 1933 biography of John Adams, described the man as "staunch, honest, stubborn and somewhat narrow.

FactSnippet No. 242,168 - en.wikipedia.org

111. Ferling, in his 1992 biography, writes that "John Adams was his own worst enemy.

FactSnippet No. 242,169 - en.wikipedia.org

112. John Adams is commemorated as the namesake of various counties, buildings, and other items.

FactSnippet No. 242,170 - en.wikipedia.org