Abigail Adams feels like a neighbor! Her 18th Century influence still resonates loudly throughout the Boston of today.
She’s alive in the hundreds of letters she shared with John Adams.
Abigail Adams was an early proponent of a woman’s right to property and education. She opposed slavery.
Her many connections to Boston are all around us, if you know where to look.
Today, we’ll tell you about Abigail Adams’ strong beliefs and her Boston home.
Brattle Square Home
Some of Abigail’s letters to John were written from the heart of Boston. From 1768 to 1771 they lived where Boston City Hall stands today. According to information on the tour sites organized by the Boston Women’s Heritage Trail, the family lived in two locations in and near what was then Brattle Square.
A Voice Ahead of Her Time
Abigail Adams is an important figure in women’s history. She spoke out for women to have property rights and the right to education. She was self-educated but said, “If we mean to have heroes, statesmen and philosophers, we should have learned women.”
It’s fitting that Abigail stands gazing in the direction of the poet and slave, Phyllis Wheatley, on the Women's Memorial. Abigail opposed slavery saying, “I wish most sincerely there was not a slave in this province. It always appeared a most iniquitous scheme to me— to fight ourselves for what we are daily robbing and plundering from those who have as good a right to freedom as we have.”
One supporter of the Boston Women’s Memorial said, "Daughters in the Back Bay will no longer have to ask, 'Where are the women?' They can now visit them every day." Since the memorial was dedicated in 2003, Abigail Adams has become a more visible part of our historic community. Men and women from Boston and around the world have learned more about this woman, her words and her connections to Boston.
Yesterday, in PART ONE, we pointed out some of the obvious, and not so obvious, places you’ll find Abigail Adams.
Get to Know the Boston Women’s Memorial
Learn more about the fascinating lives of John & Abigail Adams...
Words: Penny & Ed Cherubino
Adapted from Penny’s “Abigail Adams’ Boston Connections” article in the Back Bay Sun
Photography: © 2009 Penny Cherubino