John Quincy Adams: a public life, a private life

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Harvard University Press, 2002 - Biography & Autobiography - 432 pages

John Quincy Adams was raised, educated, and groomed to be President, following in the footsteps of his father, John. At fourteen he was secretary to the Minister to Russia and, later, was himself Minister to the Netherlands and Prussia. He was U.S. Senator, Secretary of State, and then President for one ill-fated term. His private life showed a parallel descent. He was a poet, writer, critic, and Professor of Oratory at Harvard. He married a talented and engaging Southerner, but two of his three sons were disappointments. This polymath and troubled man, caught up in both a democratic age not to his understanding and the furies of passion, was an American lion in winter.

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JOHN QUINCY ADAMS: A Public Life, A Private Life

User Review  - Kirkus

A groundbreaking work on one of America's undeservedly neglected great figures that draws on John Quincy Adams's voluminous diaries. The son of President John Adams, ``JQA'' (as he often signed ... Read full review

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User Review  - auntmarge64 - LibraryThing

Adams, our 6th President, is more well-known for his lengthy post-presidential career as a Congressman, where he fought slavery, the addition of Texas to the Union, and the Mexican-American War. As a ... Read full review


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About the author (2002)

Paul C. Nagel was Director of the Virginia Historical Society until 1985, when he turned entirely to writing biography. His most recent books include Descent From Glory and The Adams Women. He is a contributing editor of American Heritage, a trustee of the Colonial Williamsburg Foundation, a fellow
of the Society of American Historians, and past president of the Southern Historical Association.

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