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John Quincy Adams - Biography, Presidency and Facts

John Quincy Adams - Biography, Presidency and Facts


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John Quincy Adams began his diplomatic career as the U.S. minister to the Netherlands in 1794, and served as minister to Prussia during the presidential administration of his father, the formidable patriot John Adams. After serving in the Massachusetts State Senate and the U.S. Senate, the younger Adams rejoined diplomatic service under President James Madison, helping to negotiate the Treaty of Ghent (1814), which ended the War of 1812. As secretary of state under James Monroe, Adams played a key role in determining the president’s foreign policy, including the famous Monroe Doctrine. John Quincy Adams went on to win the presidency in a highly contentious election in 1824, and served only one term. Outspoken in his opposition to slavery and in support of freedom of speech, Adams was elected to the House of Representatives in 1830; he would serve until his death in 1848.

John Quincy Adams, Son of John Adams

Born on July 11, 1767, in Braintree (now Quincy), Massachusetts, John Quincy Adams was the second child and first son of John and Abigail Adams. As a young boy, John Quincy watched the famous Battle of Bunker Hill (June 1775) from a hilltop near the family farm with his mother. He accompanied his father on a diplomatic mission to France when he was 10, and would later study at European universities, eventually becoming fluent in seven languages. Adams returned to Massachusetts in 1785 and entered Harvard College, graduating two years later. He then studied law and was admitted to the bar in 1790, after which he set up a law practice in Boston.

As a young lawyer, Adams wrote articles defending the neutrality policy of George Washington’s presidential administration regarding the war between France and Britain in 1793. In 1794, Washington appointed him as a U.S. minister to the Netherlands. After the elder John Adams was elected president in 1796, he made his son minister to Prussia (Germany). Before leaving for Berlin, John Quincy Adams married Louisa Catherine Johnson, whom he met in London (she was the daughter of the American consul there). Tragically, the couple would suffer the loss of three children–a daughter in infancy and two sons in adulthood–and by some accounts it was a largely unhappy match.

John Quincy Adams Returns to the U.S.

After John Adams lost the presidency to Thomas Jefferson in 1800, he recalled John Quincy from Europe; the younger Adams returned to Boston in 1801 and reopened his law practice. The following year he was elected to the Massachusetts State Senate, and in 1803 the state legislature chose him to serve in the U.S. Senate. Though Adams, like his father, was known as a member of the Federalist Party, once in Washington he voted against the Federalist Party line on several issues, including Jefferson’s ill-fated Embargo Act of 1807, which greatly harmed the interests of New England merchants. He soon became estranged from the Federalists, and came to abhor party politics. Adams resigned his Senate seat in June 1808 and returned to Harvard, where he had been made a professor.

In 1809, President James Madison called Adams back into diplomatic service, appointing him ambassador to the Russian court of Czar Alexander I. While in St. Petersburg, Adams observed Napoleon’s invasion of Russia and later the withdrawal of the French army after that great conflict. Meanwhile, war had broken out between the United States and Britain, and in 1814 Madison called Adams to Belgium in order to negotiate the Treaty of Ghent, which ended the War of 1812. John Quincy Adams then began serving (like his father before him) as U.S. minister to Great Britain; his son, Charles Francis Adams, would go on to hold the same post during the American Civil War.

John Quincy Adams: From Diplomat to President

In 1817, President James Monroe named John Quincy Adams as his secretary of state, as part of his efforts to build a sectionally balanced cabinet. Adams achieved many diplomatic accomplishments in this post, including negotiating the joint occupation of Oregon with England and acquiring Florida from Spain. He also served as the chief architect of what became known as the Monroe Doctrine (1823), which aimed to prevent further European intervention or colonization in Latin America by asserting U.S. protection over the entire Western Hemisphere.

In 1824, Adams entered a five-way race for the presidency with two other members of Monroe’s cabinet–Secretary of War John C. Calhoun and Secretary of the Treasury William H. Crawford–along with Henry Clay, then speaker of the House, and the military hero General Andrew Jackson. Adams carried the New England states, most of New York and a few districts elsewhere, but finished behind Jackson (who won Pennsylvania, the Carolinas and most of the West) in both the electoral and popular votes. No candidate received a majority of electoral votes, and the election was decided by the House of Representatives. Speaker Clay threw his support behind Adams, who won the presidency and later named Clay as secretary of state. Jackson’s supporters raged against this “corrupt bargain,” and Jackson himself resigned from the Senate; he would again seek the presidency (successfully) in 1828.

John Quincy Adams, Sixth President of the United States

As president, Adams faced steadfast hostility from the Jacksonians in Congress, which perhaps explained his relatively few substantive accomplishments while in the White House. He proposed a progressive national program, including federal funding of an interstate system of roads and canals and the creation of a national university. Critics, especially Jackson’s supporters, argued that such advancements exceeded federal authority according to the Constitution. The Erie Canal was completed while Adams was in office, linking the Great Lakes to East Coast and enabling a flow of products such as grain, whiskey and farm produce to Eastern markets. Adams also sought to provide Native Americans with territory in the West, but like many of his initiatives this failed to find support in Congress.

Up for reelection in 1828, Adams was hurt by accusations of corruption and criticism of his unpopular domestic program, among other issues; he lost badly to Jackson, who captured most of the southern and western votes. Adams became only the second president in U.S. history to fail to win a second term; the first had been his own father, in 1800. He retired to private life in Massachusetts only briefly, winning election to the House of Representatives in 1830. He served as a leading congressman for the rest of his life, earning the nickname “Old Man Eloquent” for his passionate support of freedom of speech and universal education, and especially for his strong arguments against slavery, the “peculiar institution” that would tear the nation apart only decades later. After suffering two strokes, Adams died on February 23, 1848 at the age of 80.


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PHOTO GALLERIES


John Quincy Adams: 6th President of the United States

Born on July 11, 1767, in Braintree, Massachusetts, John Quincy Adams had a fascinating childhood. He grew up during the American Revolution. He lived and traveled throughout Europe. He was tutored by his parents and was an excellent student. He went to schools in Paris and Amsterdam. Back in America, he entered Harvard as a Junior. He graduated second in his class in 1787. He then studied law and was a voracious reader his whole life.


John Quincy Adams - Biography, Presidency and Facts - HISTORY

The first President who was the son of a President, John Quincy Adams in many respects paralleled the career as well as the temperament and viewpoints of his illustrious father. Born in Braintree, Massachusetts, in 1767, he watched the Battle of Bunker Hill from the top of Penn's Hill above the family farm. As secretary to his father in Europe, he became an accomplished linguist and assiduous diarist.

After graduating from Harvard College, he became a lawyer. At age 26 he was appointed Minister to the Netherlands, then promoted to the Berlin Legation. In 1802 he was elected to the United States Senate. Six years later President Madison appointed him Minister to Russia.

Serving under President Monroe, Adams was one of America's great Secretaries of State, arranging with England for the joint occupation of the Oregon country, obtaining from Spain the cession of the Floridas, and formulating with the President the Monroe Doctrine.

In the political tradition of the early 19th century, Adams as Secretary of State was considered the political heir to the Presidency. But the old ways of choosing a President were giving way in 1824 before the clamor for a popular choice.

Within the one and only party--the Republican--sectionalism and factionalism were developing, and each section put up its own candidate for the Presidency. Adams, the candidate of the North, fell behind Gen. Andrew Jackson in both popular and electoral votes, but received more than William H. Crawford and Henry Clay. Since no candidate had a majority of electoral votes, the election was decided among the top three by the House of Representatives. Clay, who favored a program similar to that of Adams, threw his crucial support in the House to the New Englander.

Upon becoming President, Adams appointed Clay as Secretary of State. Jackson and his angry followers charged that a "corrupt bargain" had taken place and immediately began their campaign to wrest the Presidency from Adams in 1828.

Well aware that he would face hostility in Congress, Adams nevertheless proclaimed in his first Annual Message a spectacular national program. He proposed that the Federal Government bring the sections together with a network of highways and canals, and that it develop and conserve the public domain, using funds from the sale of public lands. In 1828, he broke ground for the 185-mile C & 0 Canal.

Adams also urged the United States to take a lead in the development of the arts and sciences through the establishment of a national university, the financing of scientific expeditions, and the erection of an observatory. His critics declared such measures transcended constitutional limitations.

The campaign of 1828, in which his Jacksonian opponents charged him with corruption and public plunder, was an ordeal Adams did not easily bear. After his defeat he returned to Massachusetts, expecting to spend the remainder of his life enjoying his farm and his books.

Unexpectedly, in 1830, the Plymouth district elected him to the House of Representatives, and there for the remainder of his life he served as a powerful leader. Above all, he fought against circumscription of civil liberties.

In 1836 southern Congressmen passed a "gag rule" providing that the House automatically table petitions against slavery. Adams tirelessly fought the rule for eight years until finally he obtained its repeal.

In 1848, he collapsed on the floor of the House from a stroke and was carried to the Speaker's Room, where two days later he died. He was buried--as were his father, mother, and wife--at First Parish Church in Quincy. To the end, "Old Man Eloquent" had fought for what he considered right.

U.S. Presidents: United in Service
Take a look at presidential biographies made by kids and videos about service from the President's Council on Service and Civic Participation.

Born: July 11, 1767 in Braintree, Massachusetts

Died: February 23, 1848, after collapsing on the floor of the House two days earlier.


John Quincy Adams - Biography, Presidency and Facts - HISTORY

John Quincy Adams biography:
The first President who was the son of a President, John Quincy Adams in many respects paralleled the career as well as the temperament and viewpoints of his illustrious father. Born in Braintree, Massachusetts, in 1767, he watched the Battle of Bunker Hill from the top of Penn's Hill above the family farm. As secretary to his father in Europe, he became an accomplished linguist and assiduous diarist.

After graduating from Harvard College, he became a lawyer. At age 26 he was appointed Minister to the Netherlands, then promoted to the Berlin Legation. In 1802 he was elected to the United States Senate. Six years later President Madison appointed him Minister to Russia.

Serving under President Monroe, Adams was one of America's great Secretaries of State, arranging with England for the joint occupation of the Oregon country, obtaining from Spain the cession of the Floridas, and formulating with the President the Monroe Doctrine.

In the political tradition of the early 19th century, Adams as Secretary of State was considered the political heir to the Presidency. But the old ways of choosing a President were giving way in 1824 before the clamor for a popular choice.

Within the one and only party, the Republican, sectionalism and factionalism were developing, and each section put up its own candidate for the Presidency. Adams, the candidate of the North, fell behind Gen. Andrew Jackson in both popular and electoral votes, but received more than William H. Crawford and Henry Clay. Since no candidate had a majority of electoral votes, the election was decided among the top three by the House of Representatives. Clay, who favored a program similar to that of Adams, threw his crucial support in the House to the New Englander.

Upon becoming President, Adams appointed Clay as Secretary of State. Jackson and his angry followers charged that a "corrupt bargain" had taken place and immediately began their campaign to wrest the Presidency from Adams in 1828.

Well aware that he would face hostility in Congress, Adams nevertheless proclaimed in his first Annual Message a spectacular national program. He proposed that the Federal Government bring the sections together with a network of highways and canals, and that it develop and conserve the public domain, using funds from the sale of public lands. In 1828, he broke ground for the 185-mile C & 0 Canal.

Adams also urged the United States to take a lead in the development of the arts and sciences through the establishment of a national university, the financing of scientific expeditions, and the erection of an observatory. His critics declared such measures transcended constitutional limitations.

The campaign of 1828, in which his Jacksonian opponents charged him with corruption and public plunder, was an ordeal Adams did not easily bear. After his defeat he returned to Massachusetts, expecting to spend the remainder of his life enjoying his farm and his books.

Unexpectedly, in 1830, the Plymouth district elected him to the House of Representatives, and there for the remainder of his life he served as a powerful leader. Above all, he fought against circumscription of civil liberties.

In 1836 southern Congressmen passed a "gag rule" providing that the House automatically table petitions against slavery. Adams tirelessly fought the rule for eight years until finally he obtained its repeal.

In 1848, he collapsed on the floor of the House from a stroke and was carried to the Speaker's Room, where two days later he died. He was buried, as were his father, mother, and wife, at First Parish Church in Quincy. To the end, "Old Man Eloquent" had fought for what he considered right.


President John Quincy Adams

The first President who was the son of a President, John Quincy Adams in many respects paralleled the career as well as the temperament and viewpoints of his illustrious father. Born in Braintree, Massachusetts, in 1767, he watched the Battle of Bunker Hill from the top of Penn's Hill above the family farm. As secretary to his father in Europe, he became an accomplished linguist and assiduous diarist.

After graduating from Harvard College, he became a lawyer. At age 26 he was appointed Minister to the Netherlands, then promoted to the Berlin Legation. In 1802 he was elected to the United States Senate. Six years later President Madison appointed him Minister to Russia.

Serving under President Monroe, Adams was one of America's great Secretaries of State, arranging with England for the joint occupation of the Oregon country, obtaining from Spain the cession of the Floridas, and formulating with the President the Monroe Doctrine.

In the political tradition of the early 19th century, Adams as Secretary of State was considered the political heir to the Presidency. But the old ways of choosing a President were giving way in 1824 before the clamor for a popular choice.

Within the one and only party, the Republican, sectionalism and factionalism were developing, and each section put up its own candidate for the Presidency. Adams, the candidate of the North, fell behind Gen. Andrew Jackson in both popular and electoral votes, but received more than William H. Crawford and Henry Clay. Since no candidate had a majority of electoral votes, the election was decided among the top three by the House of Representatives. Clay, who favored a program similar to that of Adams, threw his crucial support in the House to the New Englander.

Upon becoming President, Adams appointed Clay as Secretary of State. Jackson and his angry followers charged that a "corrupt bargain" had taken place and immediately began their campaign to wrest the Presidency from Adams in 1828.

Well aware that he would face hostility in Congress, Adams nevertheless proclaimed in his first Annual Message a spectacular national program. He proposed that the Federal Government bring the sections together with a network of highways and canals, and that it develop and conserve the public domain, using funds from the sale of public lands. In 1828, he broke ground for the 185-mile C & 0 Canal.

Adams also urged the United States to take a lead in the development of the arts and sciences through the establishment of a national university, the financing of scientific expeditions, and the erection of an observatory. His critics declared such measures transcended constitutional limitations.

The campaign of 1828, in which his Jacksonian opponents charged him with corruption and public plunder, was an ordeal Adams did not easily bear. After his defeat he returned to Massachusetts, expecting to spend the remainder of his life enjoying his farm and his books.

Unexpectedly, in 1830, the Plymouth district elected him to the House of Representatives, and there for the remainder of his life he served as a powerful leader. Above all, he fought against circumscription of civil liberties.

In 1836 southern Congressmen passed a "gag rule" providing that the House automatically table petitions against slavery. Adams tirelessly fought the rule for eight years until finally he obtained its repeal.

In 1848, he collapsed on the floor of the House from a stroke and was carried to the Speaker's Room, where two days later he died. He was buried, as were his father, mother, and wife, at First Parish Church in Quincy. To the end, "Old Man Eloquent" had fought for what he considered right.


John Quincy Adams

Summary of President John Quincy Adams for Kids: "The Abolitionist"
Summary: John Quincy Adams (1767-1848), nicknamed the "Abolitionist" , was the 6th American President and served in office from 1825-1829. The Presidency of John Quincy Adams spanned the period in United States history that encompasses the events of the Evolution Era. President John Quincy Adams represented the Democratic-Republican political party which influenced the domestic and foreign policies of his presidency.

The major accomplishments and the famous, main events that occurred during the time that John Quincy Adams was president included the completion of Erie Canal (1826), the Tariff of 1828 and construction began on the Baltimore and Ohio Railroad (1828). John Quincy Adams was a firm abolitionist and led the fight against the Gag Rule to force Congress to receive antislavery petitions. John Quincy Adams died following a stroke on February 23, 1848, aged 80. The next president was Andrew Jackson.

Life of John Quincy Adams for kids - John Quincy Adams Fact File
The summary and fact file of John Quincy Adams provides bitesize facts about his life.

The Nickname of John Quincy Adams: "The Abolitionist"
The nickname of President John Quincy Adams provides an insight into how the man was viewed by the American public during his presidency. The meaning of the nickname the "Abolitionist" refers to his campaign against slavery and his determination and persistence in bringing up the slavery issue against the 'Gag Rule' of Congress. After his presidency he continued his fight against slavery during the Amistad Slave Ship Incident when he acted as defending counsel of the 35 surviving slaves successfully arguing that the men should be freed enabling them to return to their homeland in Sierra Leone in Africa.

Character and Personality Type of John Quincy Adams
The character traits of President John Quincy Adams can be described as reserved, austere, persistent and determined. It has been speculated that the Myers-Briggs personality type for John Quincy Adams is an INTP (introversion, intuition, thinking, perceiving). A modest, quiet, stoic character with a preference to work informally with others as equals. John Quincy Adams Personality type: Quiet, analytical, impatient and thoughtful.

Accomplishments of John Quincy Adams and the Famous Events during his Presidency
The accomplishments of John Quincy Adams and the most famous events during his presidency are provided in
an interesting, short summary format detailed below.

John Quincy Adams for kids - General Survey Act of 1824
Summary of the General Survey Act of 1824: The General Survey Act of 1824 authorized the president to have surveys made of important transportation routes such as roads and canals. The Corps of Engineers were given the role of conducting surveys and charting transportation improvements that were vital to the nation's commercial growth and military protection.

John Quincy Adams for kids - 1828 Tariff of Abominations
Summary of the 1828 Tariff of Abominations: The 1828 Tariff of Abominations favored the commercial interests of the North at the expense of the South resulting in the rise of taxes on southern raw materials, like cotton and tobacco, and ultimately led to the Nullification Crisis of 1832 during the presidency of Andrew Jackson.

John Quincy Adams for kids - South Carolina Exposition
Summary of the South Carolina Exposition: The South Carolina Exposition was a document was written by John C. Calhoun, vice president under John Quincy Adams, in opposition to the Tariff of Abominations and reinforcing the principle of Nullification.

John Quincy Adams for kids - The Horse Car
Summary of the Horse Car: The Horse Car, horse-drawn stage coaches, wagons or carts, was the early form of public transport in the cities. John G. Stephenson built the first horse cars and his vehicles were used on the streets of New York in 1832. The Horse Car was a great success and soon spread to other large cities such as Philadelphia, Boston and New Orleans.

John Quincy Adams for kids - The Gag Rule
Summary of the Gag Rule: The Gag Rule was applied in Congress from 1836 to 1844, banning petitions calling for the Abolition of Slavery. After his presidency John Quincy Adams continued his involvement in politics as a member of the House of Representatives where he fought for the abolition of slavery and the end of the 'Gag Rule' during his involvement with the Abolitionist Movement.

President John Quincy Adams Video for Kids
The article on the accomplishments of John Quincy Adams provides an overview and summary of some of the most important events during his presidency. The following John Quincy Adams video will give you additional important history, facts and dates about the foreign and domestic political events of the administration of John Quincy Adams.

Accomplishments of President John Quincy Adams

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1824 &ndash 25 Presidential Election

In 1824 the political scene was in disarray. James Monroe had been successfully labeled a bipartisan who managed to cross party lines with his cabinet and his politics. During his presidency the Federalist party faded into oblivion and he ran unchallenged for his second term. The result was the collapse of the Democratic-Republican caucus system and the Presidency became more of a regional fight. Five contenders fought for the office of President of the United States of America: John Quincy Adams, Andrew Jackson, Henry Clay, John C. Calhoun and William H. Crawford. With exception to Henry Clay, all of these men served in James Monroe&rsquos cabinet and all had served brilliantly.

During the election, Calhoun dropped out of the race leaving four contenders. Soon after, Crawford fell ill and had to also leave the race leaving three contenders. John Quincy had strong support in New England. No doubt his father&rsquos legacy aided him, but he was viewed as a brilliant legal mind as well as a brilliant diplomat. His life of public service to his country had given him the reputation of a true patriot. Come election day it was the popular Andrew Jackson who won the popular vote, but not enough of a majority in the electoral college to claim a victory. The election then fell to the House of Representatives and Henry Clay, the odd man out who did not care for Andrew Jackson, cast the deciding vote in favor of John Quincy Adams.

Clay&rsquos vote for Adams was based off of a personal dislike for Andrew Jackson and similar views on domestic policies with John Quincy Adams. After the election, John Quincy appointed Henry Clay as his Secretary of State. It was not as political as the Jacksonian Democrats made it out to be. John Quincy Adams was a brilliant diplomat, but a poor politician. Evidence from his life suggests that he did not have the political acumen to pull that type of move off as he was notorious for making enemies in his own party. Even-so this outrage from the Jacksonian Democrats fueled a victory for them in the 1828 elections.


American Experience

John Adams expected great things from his eldest son, John Quincy. "You came into life with advantages which will disgrace you if your success is mediocre. . And if you do not rise to the head of your country, it will be owing to your own laziness and slovenliness." He would rise, of course he'd been preparing for the job since childhood.

Courtesy: National Portrait Gallery, Smithisonian

A Childhood Abroad
John Quincy was born on July 11, 1767. In 1778 the 10-year-old accompanied his father on his first diplomatic mission to France. He spent most of the next eight years living with his father in Paris, Amsterdam, and London. At 14, fully conversant in French, John Quincy served as secretary and translator to St. Petersburg emissary Francis Dana. In 1783 John Quincy returned to Paris as his father's secretary during the treaty negotiations that ended the Revolutionary War.

From Law to Diplomacy
Back in America, John Quincy followed his father's path to Harvard and then into law. But he had little interest in a legal career, and in 1790 he gladly accepted President George Washington's appointment as minister to the Netherlands. His next post, as minister to Prussia, would come in 1797 from his father, by then president. This same year, John Quincy, at 30, married Anglo-American Louisa Catherine Johnson. Their marriage was by no means the partnership that his parents' was, but he found her "amiable" enough. They had four children: George Washington John 2d Charles Francis and Louisa Catherine, who died at about one year of age. His sons' childhood, like that of his siblings, was marked by long separations from their ambitious father.

Courtesy: Adams National Historical Park

Changing Sides
In 1803, back in Massachusetts after his father had lost re-election, John Quincy was elected to the state legislature. Appointed to the U.S. Senate (senators were not elected by popular vote until 1913), he enraged the Massachusetts Federalist Party by being the only member of the party to support President Thomas Jefferson's Louisiana Purchase. Like his father, he had chosen policy over party. Unlike his father, when the state legislature didn't return him to the Senate, John Quincy defected to the Republican side.

Secretary of State
Under President James Madison, John Quincy rejoined the diplomatic corps as the first U.S. minister to Russia. He was one of the negotiators of the treaty ending the War of 1812, a pact that restored all U.S. territory to its prewar borders. As President James Monroe's two-term Secretary of State, John Quincy Adams is regarded by many as the best in the nation's history. He helped create the Monroe Doctrine, which shaped America's isolation policy from Europe through the early 20th century. He established the present-day U.S.-Canadian border from Minnesota to the Rockies transferred Spanish Florida to the United States halted Spanish and Russian claims to Oregon and created a policy for the recognition of new Latin American nations.

Courtesy: Library of Congress

President
His own presidency would not be as distinguished. In the four-way election of 1824, stodgy New Englander John Quincy lost the popular vote to war hero and "man of the people" Andrew Jackson, but was chosen as president when the decision went to the House of Representatives. Jackson accused Adams of winning through a corrupt bargain and vowed to beat him in 1828, which he did. In his one term as president, Adams advocated large, federally funded projects meant to improve society: road construction, river widening, educational institutions, and a national observatory. Many of these projects, however, were never realized. Like his father, he cultivated few allies in Congress.


First Term

March 5, 1825: John Quincy Adams repeats the mistake of his father John Adams and appoints political opponents to fill Federal posts. This would destroy his ability to build a strong foundation.

December 6, 1825: Adams gives an ambitious program that includes construction of roads and canals, founding of a national university, western expansion, national astronomical observatory, the standardization of weights and measures, and a variety of new laws to promote agriculture, manufacturing, commerce, arts, literature, and science. Each of his ideas came under attack from his opposition due to supporters of Andrew Jackson.

December 26, 1825: The Americans are invited to the Panama Congress which Adams accepts, but Congress rejects citing that it is getting involved in foreign affairs.

January 10, 1827: A bill to increase Tariff&rsquos on Wool is rejected by the Congress.

July 30 -August 30, 1827: The Harrisburg Convention meets and suggests higher tariffs on wool, hemp, flax, iron, steel, and other goods.

May 19, 1828: John Quincy Adams is sabotaged by Andrew Jackson supporters. He had made a foolish decision by allowing Jackson supporters into his cabinet and could never get any traction. The Tariff of Abominations passes which many support but it deprives Adams of a campaign issue.

December 3, 1828: Andrew Jackson easily defeats John Quincy Adams in the Presidential election.


John Quincy Adams


interesting facts

John Quincy Adams is the only son of a president (John Adams, 2nd President of the US) that served as President himself.


biography

John Quincy Adams was born in Braintree (now Quincy), Massachusetts. He was the second child and eldest son of John Adams, who became second president of the United States in 1797. The young John Q. Adams became a diplomat for the United States in 1793 when war between France and Britain broke out. Washington appointed Adams to be diplomat for the Netherlands because he was quite qualified for the job - he spoke both Dutch and French fluently. From his post in the Netherlands, Adams reported events that occured during the French Revolution. While serving in the Netherlands, Adams married Louisa Catherine Johnson, daughter of the U.S. consul in London, England. The couple had three sons.

In 1800, the same year his father was beaten, by Thomas Jefferson for the Presidency, John Q. Adams returned to the United States to practice law. In 1802 the Federalist Party leaders in Massachusetts, impressed by Adams's record as a diplomat and by the fact that he was the son of John Adams, helped him win election to the state senate. Shortly afterward, in 1803, the Federalists in the state legislature elected him U.S. senator from Massachusetts. As a Federalist Senator, Adams was highly inconsistent. When Thomas Jefferson relayed the voting of the purchase of the Lousiana Territory, Adams was the only Federalist that voted in favor of such an action. He knew that the power of his home section (New England) would be greatly diminished. However, with unselfish motives, he also knew that the purchase would greatly enhance the United State's economical, political and social power as a whole.

In 1809, Adams returned to foreign lands, as a Russian diplomat when President James Madison promoted him. During the War of 1812, Adams served to relieve tensions between Russia and France. At the end of the war, in 1813, Adams served to allay Russian desires with the "truce", as he called The Treaty of Ghent.

In 1817, Adams returned once again to the United States as Secretary of State under James Monroe. Adams took up the post at a turning point in American history. The country had begun a period of expansion and development, and for the first time since its founding, the United States was not involved in European struggles, because Europe itself was at peace. There were, however, difficult problems facing the new secretary of state. One that immediately confronted him was a conflict with Spain over its colony of Florida. Spain had confined its troops in Florida mainly to garrisons at Saint Marks, Pensacola, and Saint Augustine. The remainder of the territory was inhabited by the hostile Seminole people, runaway slaves, and outlaws. Spain was required by treaty to prevent these people from raiding across the U.S. border, but failed to do so. When U.S. troops entered Florida in late 1817 and burned a Seminole village, killing some of the residents, the Seminole retaliated by ambushing a U.S. hospital ship and killing 42 people. This act led to the First Seminole War (1817-1819). General Andrew Jackson was sent to subdue the Seminole. Jackson not only drove the Seminole back into Florida, but marched into Spanish territory and occupied Saint Marks and Pensacola. He captured, courtmartialed, and executed two British subjects who had encouraged the Seminole. As a result of Jackson's forceful action, Spain and Great Britain filed strong protests with the U.S. government. Adams was the sole member of Monroe's Cabinet to support Jackson. Insisting that Jackson had not exceeded his orders, Adams argued that the blame should be placed on Spain for its weak administration of Florida. He persuaded Monroe to accept his view and then instructed Spain either to govern Florida more effectively or cede it to the United States. Already troubled by revolts in its South American colonies, Spain, after long negotiations, agreed to the demands of Adams, and Florida was ceded to the United States. In the negotiations, Adams secured another important concession from Spain. The western boundary of the Louisiana Purchase had never been agreed on. Acting completely on his own, Adams persuaded Spain to agree that Louisiana ran all the way to the Pacific Ocean. The boundary began at the mouth of the Sabine River, ran northwest to the 42nd parallel (the northern boundary of California), and then extended directly west to the ocean. There still existed British and Russian claims to the Oregon country that could cut off this western ocean access but the Spanish agreement removed the major obstacle to America's sea-to-sea expansion.

Adams ran for president in the election of 1824. Also running was Andrew Jackson of Tennessee, William H. Crawford of Georgia, and Henry Clay of Kentucky. The result of the noisy campaign were interesting but confusing. Jacson, the war hero in the War of 1812, clearly had the strongest appeal, especially in the west. He polled as many popular votes as the next two rivals combined. However, Jackson failed to poll enough, or in fact the majority of the electoral votes.


Personal Life and Children

On October 25, 1764, five days before his 29th birthday, Adams married Abigail Smith, his third cousin. They had six children, Abigail (1765), John Quincy (1767), Susanna (1768), Charles (1770), Thomas Boylston (1772) and Elizabeth (1777).

Adams found himself regularly away from his family, a sacrifice that both he and Abigail saw as important to the cause, though Abigail was often unhappy.

After his presidency, Adams lived quietly with Abigail on their family farm in Quincy, where he continued to write and to correspond with his friend Jefferson. Both Adams and Jefferson died on July 4, 1826, the 50th anniversary of American independence. Adams&aposs last words were, "Thomas Jefferson survives."

John Quincy Adams, Adams&aposs son, would eventually become the sixth president of the United States, though he was a member of the opposition party, the Democratic-Republicans.



Comments:

  1. Kippar

    Fantastic :)

  2. Marleigh

    Bookmarked it.

  3. Darr

    You write well. Did you study somewhere or did it just come with experience?

  4. Gregos

    The debate about this issue seems to be very popular in the context of the financial crisis.



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