Abigail Adams

by Pauline from Laguna Beach

My hero is Abigail Adams. She inspires me because of her fierce dedication to women's rights, believing that women deserved "political, economic, and social rights, equal to those of men." In hundreds of letters, she told her husband(John Adams) to "remember the ladies". Abigail Adams was a legendary woman herself, setting her apart from other heroes.

On November 11, 1744, in Weymouth, Massachusetts, one of America's most celebrated women was born. Abigail was the second of four children born to Elizabeth Quincy Smith and the Reverend William Smith. Surprisingly, she had a good education, when many believed that women who could read and write simply and do household chores was considered adequately educated. It could be said that the young Abigail was a model child. Slim, slightly short, brunette, and wide-eyed, she was shy, polite, and obedient. Though some, like her mother, thought her stubborn and unmanageable as a child, her father and grandmother thought quite otherwise.

At fifteen, Abigail Smith first met her future husband, John Adams, 25, a law attorney. His first observations were not likeable. They were "not frank, not fond, not candid." He even disliked her father, whom he had called a "crafty, designing man." But two years after, his feelings for Abigail were altogether different. He discovered that she was attractive, witty, and gracious. On October 25, 1764, Abigail Smith and John Adans were married. They moved to Braintree(now Quincy), Massachusetts and Abigail gave birth to Abigail "Nabby" Adams during the Stamp Act period. Their second child was John Quincy, the future sixth president of the United States. Lastly, Charles(1770) and Thomas(1772) were born to them.

Although Abigail Adams lived during the time of the Stamp Act, Boston Tea Party, Boston Massacre, the signing of the Declaration of Independence, and the end of the Revolution, she did not risk her life for any reason. She spent more time writing about these affairs.

Abigail Adams died on October 25, 1818. Her husband, John Adams, lived for another eight years, long enough to see John Quincy inaugurated as the sixth president, therefore making Abigail Adams the first woman to be both the wife and mother of a president.

Page created on 2/19/2006 12:00:00 AM

Last edited 2/19/2006 12:00:00 AM

Related Links

Abigail Adams
Abigail Adams - From the biography of John Adams by DAVID McCULLOUGH