John Adams

He was born in 1735; He was just three years younger than George Washington, and served as his vice president for eight years. Easily took the office after Washington stepped-down, but was ousted four years later in the “Revolution of 1800” – a very Bush-Gore moment, and led to the 12th Amendment of the US Constitution.

He returned to Massachusetts to farm after leaving office depressed. Twelve years later he reconciled with his old friend Thomas Jefferson. The y then continued a 14-year, 154 letter correspondence. His son John Quincy Adams was elected sixth president 24 years after John left office. The father died six months after he took office. Dying at 90, he was the longest lived president for 175 years.


  • Born and raised in Massachusetts of two well heeled families
  • Attended and graduated Harvard College, age 16-20
  • Taught school, age 21-?
  • studied law with prominent lawyer James Putnam of Worchester
  • prominent opponent of the Stamp Act, age 30
  • admitted to the bar, age 32
  • elected to the legislature of Massachusetts, age 35
  • defended British soldiers on murder charges for the Boston Massacre, age 35
  • served on Massachusetts Superior Court
  • served at the Continental Congresses, age 39-40
  • authored Thoughts on Government, age 41
  • head of the Board of War and Ordinance, age 41
  • mostly authored Massachusetts’ Constitution, age 45
  • ambassador to the Netherlands, age 45-49
  • key negotiator of the Treaty of Paris, with Britain, age 48
  • ambassador to Great Britain, age 50-?
  • Vice President: “This is the most unimportant position human ever made.”, age 54-62

Thoughtfulness, deliberation and fairness seem to be his major traits.