Solar Eclipse Tips From John Quincy Adams


Sage advice from an early American eclipse chaser.
John Quincy Adams loved astronomy, and he was a huge fan of solar eclipses – from predicting and observing them to writing weird sonnets in their honor. In preparation for the Great American Eclipse on August 21, 2017, here are a few do’s and don’ts from JQA.

The Senator Who Hated John Adams’s Stupid Face


William Maclay was a hater.
Only one diary survives from the United States’ first Congress, and it’s a gold mine of shade. Pennsylvania Senator William Maclay provided detailed firsthand accounts of the day-to-day struggles of the Senate’s first years in New York City, and multiple references to how much he hated Vice President John Adams and everything about him.

John Quincy Adams's Life in 9 Boats


It was rarely smooth sailing.
In honor of John Quincy Adams’s 250th birthday, here are nine pivotal boat-related incidents that capture the love, danger, embarrassment, and tragedy of his epic life.

John Quincy Adams's Prophetic Diary Entry


He's bringing eloquent back.
Following his father’s advice, John Quincy Adams started a diary at age 12 and kept it up for the rest of his life. The result is a treasure trove of historical insight and wit and a fascinating window into 70 years worth of Adams’s private thoughts.

To commemorate the notorious JQA's 250th anniversary this July, Library of America just put out a beautiful brand new two-volume selected edition of his diary, which I immediately ordered. It arrived last night and immediately sucked me in. I found myself tearing through the pages of his life from the age of 12 through 22, astounded at how precocious and utterly relatable he was.
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