Abigail and John Adams
A half-century love affair during the Revolutionary War
by David Johnson
Although she lived at a time when many women were not educated, Abigail Adams learned to read, developing an appreciation of current events. Her intellect attracted her to a young lawyer, John Adams, and they were married in 1764. It was an intellectual and romantic relationship that would last for more than 50 years.
The Revolutionary War and other events often forced Adams to be away from home for long periods of time, so they wrote each other long affectionate letters.
When she did join her husband, on diplomatic missions to Paris and London, and later in Washington, DC, Abigail was a valued partner, entertaining with style and observing people with interest.
In 1801 the Adamses left the White House and retired to their farm in Quincy, Massachusetts, where they remained in contented companionship, for the next 17 years.