John Quincy Adams

John Quincy Adams
JQA Photo.tif (cropped).jpg
6th President of the United States
In office
March 4, 1825 – March 4, 1829
Vice PresidentJohn C. Calhoun
Preceded byJames Monroe
Succeeded byAndrew Jackson
Member of the
U.S. House of Representatives
from Massachusetts
In office
March 4, 1831 – February 23, 1848
Preceded byJoseph Richardson
Succeeded byHorace Mann
Constituency11th district (1831–33)
12th district (1833–43)
8th district (1843–48)
8th United States Secretary of State
In office
September 22, 1817 – March 4, 1825
PresidentJames Monroe
Preceded byJames Monroe
Succeeded byHenry Clay
United States Minister to the United Kingdom
In office
June 8, 1815 – May 14, 1817
PresidentJames Madison
James Monroe
Preceded byJonathan Russell (1812)
Succeeded byRichard Rush
United States Minister to Russia
In office
November 5, 1809 – April 28, 1814
PresidentJames Madison
Preceded byWilliam Short
Succeeded byJames A. Bayard
United States Senator
from Massachusetts
In office
March 4, 1803 – June 8, 1808
Preceded byJonathan Mason
Succeeded byJames Lloyd
United States Minister to Prussia
In office
December 5, 1797 – May 5, 1801
PresidentJohn Adams
Thomas Jefferson
Preceded byPosition established
Succeeded byHenry Wheaton (1835)
United States Minister to the Netherlands
In office
November 6, 1794 – June 20, 1797
PresidentGeorge Washington
John Adams
Preceded byWilliam Short
Succeeded byWilliam Vans Murray
Personal details
Born(1767-07-11)July 11, 1767
Braintree, Province of Massachusetts Bay, British America
(now Quincy, Massachusetts, U.S.)
DiedFebruary 23, 1848(1848-02-23) (aged 80)
Washington, D.C., U.S.
Resting placeUnited First Parish Church
Political partyFederalist (1792–1808)
Democratic-Republican (1808–1830)
National Republican (1830–1833)
Anti-Masonic (1833–1838)
Whig (1838–1848)
Louisa Johnson (m. 1797)
Children4, including George, John, and Charles
ParentsJohn Adams (1735–1826)
Abigail Smith
RelativesSee Adams political family and Quincy political family
EducationHarvard University (BA, MA)
SignatureCursive signature in ink

John Quincy Adams (i/ (About this sound listen);[a] July 11, 1767 – February 23, 1848) was an American statesman who served as the sixth President of the United States from 1825 to 1829 at the peak of a political career during which he served in various capacities as diplomat, United States Senator, United States Secretary of State, and U.S. Representative from Massachusetts. He was the eldest son of second president John Adams (served 1797–1801) and his wife, Abigail Adams. Initially a Federalist like his father, he successively joined the Jeffersonian Democratic-Republican, National Republican, Anti-Masonic, and Whig parties.

Adams's commitment to U.S. republican values shaped early American foreign policy. As a diplomat, Adams played an important role in negotiating key treaties, including the Treaty of Ghent, which ended the War of 1812 (1812–1815). As Secretary of State under fifth president James Monroe, he negotiated with Great Britain in 1818 over the United States' northern border with Canada, negotiated the Adams–Onís Treaty with Spain, which allowed for the annexation of Florida, and drafted the "Monroe Doctrine". Historians generally concur that he was one of the greatest diplomats and secretaries of state in American history.[2][3] Biographer Samuel Flagg Bemis argues that Adams was able to "gather together, formulate, and practice the fundamentals of American foreign-policy – self-determination, independence, noncolonization, nonintervention, nonentanglement in European politics, Freedom of the Seas, [and] freedom of commerce."[4]

Adams was elected president in a close and controversial four-way contest in 1824. As president, he sought to modernize the American economy and promote education. Adams enacted part of his agenda and paid off much of the national debt.[5] However, he was stymied time and again by a hostile Congress, and his lack of patronage networks helped politicians sabotage him. He lost his 1828 bid for re-election to Andrew Jackson. Recent historians have portrayed him as a moral leader during an era of modernization when new modes of communication spread messages of religious revival, social reform, and party politics, and when improved transportation moved goods, money, and people more rapidly.[6] He is generally ranked as an above-average president.

After leaving the presidency in 1829, Adams was elected U.S. Representative from Massachusetts, serving for the last seventeen years of his life with greater acclaim than he had achieved as president. Animated by his growing revulsion against slavery, Adams became a leading opponent of the Slave Power. Adams predicted the Union's dissolution over slavery, and felt that in such a crisis the president could abolish slavery by using his war powers.[7] Adams also became a critic of the annexation of Texas and of the Mexican–American War, which he saw as an aggressive war for territory.

Early life, education, and early career

Coat of Arms of John Quincy Adams

John Quincy Adams was born on July 11, 1767, to John Adams and his wife Abigail (née Smith) in a part of Braintree, Massachusetts that is now Quincy.[8] He was named for his mother's maternal grandfather, Colonel John Quincy, after whom Quincy, Massachusetts, is named.[9] Young Adams was educated by private tutors – his cousin James Thaxter and his father's law clerk, Nathan Rice.[10] He soon began to exhibit his literary skills in 1779, when he initiated a diary which he kept until just before he died in 1848.[11] The diary comprised an unprecedented fifty volumes, representing one of the most extensive and widely cited collections of first-hand information about the early republic.[5]

Much of Adams's youth was spent accompanying his father overseas. He accompanied his father on diplomatic missions to France from 1778 until 1779 and to the Netherlands from 1780 until 1782.[5] Adams acquired an education at institutions such as Leiden University. He matriculated in Leiden on January 10, 1781.[12][13] For nearly three years, beginning at the age of 14, he accompanied Francis Dana as a secretary on a mission to Saint Petersburg, Russia, to obtain recognition of the new United States. He spent time in Finland, Sweden, and Denmark and, in 1804, published a travel report on Silesia.[14] During these years overseas, Adams became fluent in French and Dutch and became familiar with German and other European languages.

Though Adams enjoyed Europe, he and his family decided he needed to return to the United States to complete his education and eventually launch a political career.[15] He entered Harvard College, graduated in 1787 with a Bachelor of Arts degree, and was elected by Phi Beta Kappa.[5] Adams, mainly with the influence of his father, had excelled in classical studies and reached fluency in Latin and Greek. Upon entering Harvard he had already translated Virgil, Horace, Plutarch, and Aristotle[16] and within six months memorized his Greek grammar and translated the New Testament.[17] After graduating from Harvard, he studied law with Theophilus Parsons in Newburyport, Massachusetts from 1787 to 1789.[18] He earned a Master of Arts from Harvard in 1790, was admitted to the Massachusetts bar in 1791, and began practicing law in Boston.[5]

Other Languages
azərbaycanca: Con Kuinsi Adams
Bân-lâm-gú: John Quincy Adams
беларуская: Джон Квінсі Адамс
беларуская (тарашкевіца)‎: Джон Куінсі Адамз
Bikol Central: John Quincy Adams
Bahasa Indonesia: John Quincy Adams
interlingua: John Quincy Adams
Kapampangan: John Quincy Adams
Kinyarwanda: John Quincy Adams
Kreyòl ayisyen: John Quincy Adams
Lëtzebuergesch: John Quincy Adams
македонски: Џон Квинси Адамс
Bahasa Melayu: John Quincy Adams
Mìng-dĕ̤ng-ngṳ̄: John Quincy Adams
Nederlands: John Quincy Adams
norsk nynorsk: John Quincy Adams
Piemontèis: John Quincy Adams
Plattdüütsch: John Quincy Adams
português: John Quincy Adams
Ripoarisch: John Quincy Adams
Simple English: John Quincy Adams
slovenčina: John Quincy Adams
slovenščina: John Quincy Adams
српски / srpski: Џон Квинси Адамс
srpskohrvatski / српскохрватски: John Quincy Adams
Türkmençe: Jon Kuinsy Adams
українська: Джон Квінсі Адамс
Tiếng Việt: John Quincy Adams
文言: 小亞當斯
Lingua Franca Nova: John Quincy Adams