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Founding Father John Adams

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John Adams remains the most misconstrued and unappreciated "great man" in American History (Ellis). The second president of the United States of America, he truly was a great man. Adams served in France and Holland in diplomatic roles during the Revolution, and helped negotiate the Treaty of Peace. From 1785 to 1788 he was minister to the court of St. James, returning to be elected Vice President under George Washington both of Washington's two terms. For a man of his intellect, vanity and vigor, Adam's two terms as Vice President were frustrating experiences. He complained to his wife Abigail, "My country has in its wisdom contrived for me the most insignificant office that ever the invention of man contrived or his imagination conceived" (white house). Adams also had a role in the Revolutionary war. He defended John Hancock, the British soldiers from the Boston Massacre, and secretly wrote anti-stamp pamphlets under a pen name. This founding father helped America to become the great nation it is today, through his role in the Revolution and in his term of presidency.

John Adams is a national hero, but he was very much human. "Both adversaries and friends alike found Adams to be cantankerous, argumentative, and an internally frustrating young man. If you read his diaries, he is always in agony. He was somewhat of a manic depressant, and if alive today, would have required Prozac. His diary entries consisted of highs and lows and he once wrote, "I passed so and so on the street and they said Hello. I wonder what they meant by that?" He was always doing battle with his own demons, his own failures. He was unbelievably honest in his diary, he told what he was thinking and feeling (Founding Fathers).

Adams also had an interesting role in the Boston Massacre. He defended the soldiers. The Bostonians wanted justice and revenge against the British officers who killed five of their own men. Samuel Adams also wanted justice, but he was very rational and determined that if Boston was to be viewed as a decent place, then the soldiers must have a public trial. The team chose for the soldiers' defense was none other than John Adams and his colleague Josiah Quincy. Adams, however, was not eager to take the assignment, but Samuel Adams argued, on the basis of justice, these men must have the best defense, an argument that would always sway Adams. John Adams reluctantly took the case. Angry Bostonians threw bricks threw his windows, furious because they believed that an American was taking sides with the British soldiers. Adams stood firm, and in the end the soldiers were convicted, but on minor charges. None of them



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