Sunday, July 25, 2010

History in our own backyard

On Sunday, we took a long-overdue visit to the Adams National Historical Park in Quincy, MA. It’s just a few miles south of Boston and is the birthplace of two American presidents, John Adams (who was our nation’s first vice president, under George Washington, and later elected as our young country’s second president), and his son, John Quincy Adams, who was our sixth president.

The two-hour tour included a trolley ride to the saltbox homes where each of the men were born, as well as a tour of “Peacefield”, the mansion that John and Abigail Adams purchased following their extended stay in Europe where John served as an ambassador to Great Britain and the Netherlands. The home, which was purchased by the Adams’ in 1788, was home to four generations of the family until it was sold in 1927. Also on the tour was The Stone Library, a brick structure built next to the main house that was designed to keep the family’s vast library safe from fire.

It was fun to tour these historic properties and to walk in the shoes of two great American leaders. No photography is allowed inside the properties, but hopefully these snapshots will give you a sense of what we saw today.

The homestead of our second president John Adams. This is where John and his wife Abigail started their family and where John started his law practice.

The second home on the property, birthplace of John Quincy Adams.

John and Abigail Adams moved into "The Old House" in 1788 following their return from Europe. The house has quadrupled in size since it was purchased by the soon-to-be second president of the United States.

The Stone Library houses more than 14,000 books that belonged to the Adams' family.

The grounds of "The Old House" in Quincy, MA.

A rare, autographed photo of the Addams family.


  1. looks like a great day....and the signed photo, ;)

  2. Hi Mike - I'm in Boston this Friday and there for 1 week - I sent an e-mail to Bos Guy so hopefully we can all catch up for a quick drink! Cheers!

    Post a comment on my blog if your keen!

  3. Uncle Fester served as Secretary of the Interior in Madison's administration.

  4. Yes, until that tragic scandal with Undersecretary Lurch

  5. What a wealth! I had no idea this was available to us, and right in my own backyard. Isn't that always the way?! I will be paying a visit to take an historic walk through our City's great history here, at the Adams' home very soon. And thank you for enlightening me.

    I recenlty caught up on 'Jonh Adams' the mini-series on HBO OnDemand. Great stuff!

    Ah yes, the Addams were known for being very progressive in their day.;-)

  6. P.S. Thank you for your suggestions about places to take Daph when he comes. It's because of your posts' I've already told him we're going to Castle Island and The Adams house (which I had no idea even existed until your blog). We're both looking forward to it!



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