Abigail Adams- Book Review

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“Abigail Adams: A Revolutionary American Woman” Book Review

The third edition of Charles W. Akers’ book, “Abigail Adams: A Revolutionary American Woman” was published in 2006 by Pearson Longman Inc. and is one of the many books included in the Library of American Biography Series, edited by Mark C. Carnes. This 256 page biography includes a table of contents, an editor’s and author’s preface, study and discussion questions, acknowledgements and an index. This chronological biography of Abigail Adams (1744-1818), the wife of President John Adams (1735-1826) and a strong advocator for women’s rights, gives insight on the life of whom Akers’ believes to be one of the most influential woman of the 18th century.

Born in Weymouth, Massachusetts on November 11, 1744, A. Adams was one out of four kids (2-3). Being a daughter of a Congregational minister, A. Adams grew up as a devout Christian, eagerly embracing her faith. Her father’s position also allowed her the luxury of being literate, though her education was not up to par with that of a man’s. Richard Cranch, A. Adam’s future brother-in-law, greatly influenced her through his passion for scholarship; she began expressing herself intellectually and emotionally through literature (8-10).

Fortunate to find a husband that accepted her unladylike educational accomplishments, A. Adams married John Adams, who at the time was just an ambitious lawyer, on October 25, 1764 (17). Only four out of her five children survived to adulthood. She had one girl, Abigail “Nabby” Smith, and three boys, John Quincy Adams—who later becomes the sixth president of the US—Charles Adams, and Thomas Boylston. J. Adams became a leading political figure and the most distinguished lawyer of Massachusetts in 1772, and was rarely seen at home. A. Adams was forced to stay at home to raise their four surviving children and to maintain their farm in place of her husband. She started her own small enterprise by selling European goods that...
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