Abigail Adams: Letter to Thomas Boylston Adams

(ca. 1796)

As a thoroughly domestic person throughout her life, Abigail Adams wrote no formal documents of any kind, but her private correspondence with every member of her family and with several prominent contemporaries, including Thomas Jefferson, was voluminous. Her sharp wit and discerning political and social observations, her paraphrases and quotations from her extensive reading in history and literature, and her deeply felt beliefs as a wife, a mother, and a woman appear in hundreds of passages throughout these letters. At their center is her correspondence with John Adams, beginning during their courtship in the early 1760s, when she was in her teens, and extending through more than a thousand exchanged letters before John's retirement in 1801.

Although the contents of Adams's letters to John, her children, other relatives, and friends, were wide ranging—from farm management and Braintree gossip to international news—she always regarded her entire correspondence as strictly...

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Abigail Adams (Library of Congress)

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