Adams Nat'l Hist Park
— Quincy, Mass —
"Improve your understanding for acquiring useful knowledge and virtue, such as will render you an ornament to society, an Honour to your Country, and a Blessing to Your parents."
Abigail Adams in a letter to her 10-year-old son, John Quincy Adams, in Europe.
Abigail Adams was a determined and intelligent woman and one of history's most renowned and prolific letter writers. She holds the distinction of being the wife of the second U.S. President, John Adams, and the mother of the sixth President, John Quincy Adams. For nearly a decade during and after the American Revolution, as her husband struggled at home and abroad to establish a new nation, Abigail remained the "patriot on the home front," a keen observer and astute chronicler of the events that led to American independence. Her now-famous correspondence provided her husband with a window on the tumultuous events in Boston and Braintree and left an indelible "pen and parchment" record for future generations.
In a compelling appeal for women's rights, Abigail urged her husband to "Remember the Ladies" as John and his fellow delegates at the Constitutional Congress sought to devise a new code of laws for the young nation. In her children, she sought to instill a commitment to education, family, and public service. During the American Revolution, as patriots of all ages answered the call of their fledgling country, Abigail inspired her 11-year-old son with the words "these are the times in which a genius would wish to live."
This bronze statue, dedicated by the Quincy Partnership on June 14, 1997, was created by sculptor Lloyd Littie of Newton, Massachusetts. It depicts Abigail Adams urging young John Quincy Adams to go out into the world and prove himself. The statue stands on the grounds of the Hancock Meetinghouse, predecessor to the adjacent United First Parish Church.