Reflection on Marie Hecht’s bio of John Quincy Adams

Quick! Name one thing you know about John Quincy Adams, 6th President of the United States and son of the 2nd President of the United States…

Hum, I couldn’t either until I read Marie Hecht’s bio of him.

I learned that he was very important in the early diplomatic work of our nation and spent his teenage and early adult years primarily in Europe and Russia. I learned that as Secretary of State under James Monroe he was constantly trying to develop a list of standard procedures for US ministers (ambassadors) to help them improve their work and better represent the US.

Then, he did something that I do not recall no other President doing after being President… serving in the US House of Representatives until his death in 1844.

Adams, from my view, was a bridge between the revolutionary era and the mid-century era that was overshadowed by the issue of slavery. (Adams would become a vocal opponent of slavery.)

I am glad that I read this book and that I now have an appreciation for our 6th President.

Btw, friend and fellow blogger Julia Rocchi, has a great duo of posts on JQA’s father over at her blog. You can click on this link for the first of the two.

(Postscript: I read this book as part of an ongoing reading project that I revived in earnest last year after President Obama was elected: to read a bio/autobio of every US President. JQA is, I believe number 23 or 24.)


2 thoughts on “Reflection on Marie Hecht’s bio of John Quincy Adams

  1. John Adams has been called “The Father of the American Revolution.” His political involvement is widely acknowledged and valued. But it was Adam’s Christian faith that guided his political views. His essay, The Rights of the Colonists was widely circulated in 1772. In it he wrote, “The right to freedom being the gift of the Almighty…The rights of the colonists as Christians…may be best understood by reading and carefully studying the institution of The Great Law Giver and Head of the Christian Church, which are to be found clearly written and promulgated in the New Testament.”

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