By William J. Cooper
Why has John Quincy Adams been mostly written out of yankee historical past whilst he's, in truth, our misplaced Founding Father?
Long relegated to the sidelines of historical past because the hyperintellectual son of John and Abigail Adams, John Quincy Adams (1767–1848), hasn't ever basked within the ancient highlight. Remembered, if in any respect, as an useless president in the course of an extremely rancorous time, Adams was once humiliated in workplace after the contested election of 1824, viciously assailed through populist competitors for being either slippery and effete, after which resoundingly defeated through the western conflict hero Andrew Jackson, whose 1828 election ushered in an period of exceptional expansion.
Aware of this acceptance but confident that Adams merits a reconsideration, award-winning historian William J. Cooper has reframed the 6th president’s lifestyles in a wholly unique approach, demonstrating that Adams will be thought of our lost Founding Father, his morality and political philosophy the ultimate hyperlink to the nice visionaries who created our kingdom. As Cooper demonstrates, not anyone else in his generation—not Clay, Webster, Calhoun, or Jackson—ever skilled Europe as younger Adams did, who at fourteen translated from French on the courtroom of Catherine the nice. in truth, Adams’s very publicity to the information of the eu Enlightenment that had so motivated the Founding Fathers, together with their embody of cause, have been not often shared by means of his contemporaries, rather those that couldn't countenance slaves as equivalent human beings.
Such variations, as Cooper narrates, turned relatively major after Adams’s failed presidency, whilst he, with his more and more reclusive spouse, Louisa Catherine Adams, lower back to Washington as a Massachusetts congressman in 1831. together with his implacable foe Andrew Jackson within the White condominium, Adams passionately took up the antislavery reason. regardless of raucous competition from southern and northern politicians, Adams refused to relent, his protests so vehement that Congress enacted the gag rule within the 1830s in particular to silence him. together with his impassioned public pronouncements and his heroic arguments within the Amistad trial, a defiant Adams was once not seen as a failed president yet a countrywide, albeit curmudgeonly, hero, who eventually collapsed at the flooring of the home chamber in 1848 and died within the capital 3 days later. satirically, Adams’s loss of life and the extreme obsequies produced an outpouring of nationwide, and bipartisan, grief by no means prior to obvious within the 19th century, as though the rustic had really misplaced its final Founding Father.
Now, in one other fractious age, the brave lifetime of John Quincy Adams all of sudden takes on renewed power and that means, as William J. Cooper’s momentous biography so eloquently affirms.
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