Abigail Adams. A Biography by Phyllis Lee Levin

By Phyllis Lee Levin

Wife of 1 president and mom of one other, Abigail Adams used to be a rare girl dwelling at a rare time in American historical past. A tireless letter author and diarist, her penetrating and sometimes caustic impressions of lots of the significant people of her day—including Ben Franklin, George and Martha Washington, Thomas Jefferson, Alexander Hamilton, and King George III, between others—provide the best first-hand debts of the yank Revolution. This biography, researched and written over a fourteen-year interval, is an engaging portrait of an excellent girl on the middle of the founding of the yank republic.

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25 Abigail and John did manage two visits to the Cranch family in Salem in 1766. In mid-August, on their outing from Salem to Marblehead, John rode a single horse while the sisters went in a chaise. ”26 Abigail’s reaction to her first visit was almost to seem sadder than happier for having made it. She was broadly sentimental about Mary’s daughter Betsy: … what would I give to hear her prattle to her Cousin Nabby, to see them put their little arms around one an others necks, and hug each other, it would really be a very pleasing Sight, to me.

Instead, the family was driven out of bed in early morning to the insistent beat of fife and drums. They were indignant beyond consolation at the intrusion. Just the sight of the redcoats was a flag of danger—strong proof, John said, that Great Britain’s determination to subjugate the colonists was “too deep and inveterate” ever to be altered. 3 A second daughter, Susanna, was born in the White House on December 28, 1768, and baptized on New Year’s Day by Dr. Samuel Cooper at the Brattle Street Church.

And though he had close to forty cases listed in the city in the year of 1764, he returned home to Braintree, to his orchards, pastures, and swamps as a soldier escaped from enemy territory. By far, he preferred to spend his time pruning his apple trees, digging stones, mending and building fences, or, depending on the season, ploughing the uplands with six yoke of oxen, sowing onions, planting crab and English grasses. 2 No wonder that Abigail would be unable to spend Thanksgiving with her sister Mary’s family in Salem, what with court cases that came “so thick upon us,” and her deep involvement in farming.

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