John and Abigail Adams: Love in the Founding Era

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Duration 01:04:21

Baruch College

Carol Berkin is Presidential Professor of History at Baruch College and a member of the history faculty of the Graduate Center of CUNY. She has worked as a consultant on several PBS and History Channel documentaries, including, The Scottsboro Boys, which was nominated for an Academy Award. She has also appeared as a commentator on screen in the PBS series “New York,” by Ric Burns, the Middlemarch series “Benjamin Franklin” and “Alexander Hamilton” on PBS, and the History Channel series “The Founding Fathers.” She serves on the Board of The Gilder Lehrman Institute of American History and the Board of the National Council for History Education.


Everything You Need to Know About John and Abigail Adams Relationship

John Adams and Abigail Smith Adams are truly America’s legendary couple, as inseparably linked as Romeo and Juliet.

They were not, of course, the only happily married couple among the founding generation. They were not the only ones who sacrificed time together in the service of their country. They were not the only revolutionaries who saw the war in the narrowest of terms as a war for independence not an opportunity to reshape society and its gender or racial patterns. They were not the only Federalists who viewed themselves not as members of a political party but as guardians of the Constitution but viewed their opposition as a faction dangerous to the survival of the Republic. What then explains the attention that generations of historians and the public have paid to Abigail and John Adams; what draws us to them, what makes us see them as emblematic of an era we honor? It is, of course, the existence of a correspondence that spans the founding era and provides us with an intimate portrait of life in the age of our revolution that otherwise would be lost to us.

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