Abigail Smith Adams was born in a small town in Massachusetts. As a girl, Abigail did not receive a formal education. Her mother did teach her to read and write. She read books in her father's library and learned new ideas. She was frustrated over not getting a better education. This frustration led her to argue for women's rights later on in life.
Abigail married John Adams in 1763. They had six children, two of whom died young, as was common in those days.
In 1768 the family moved to Boston. During this time relations between the American colonies and Great Britain were growing tense. John began to take a major role in the revolution and was chosen to attend the Continental Congress in Philadelphia.
Abigail had to take care of the family while John was at the Congress. She made all the decisions, managed the finances, took care of the farm, and educated the children.
When war broke out in nearby Lexington and Concord, Abigail hid American soldiers in her house. They also trained in her yard, and she melted utensils to make ammunition for the soldiers.
During the war Abigail wrote many letters to her husband. These letters are a major source of our information about the home front during the Revolutionary War.
When John Adams was elected president in 1796, Abigail became the First Lady. She was against slavery and believed in the equal rights of all people. She also believed that everyone had the right to a good education, including women. Abigail always gave President Adams the woman's point of view on issues.
Source: Abigail Adams
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