Abigail Adams: A Life

Woody Holton, Author . Free Press $30 (483p) ISBN 978-1-4165-4680-1

While Abigail Adams has always been viewed as one of the most illustrious of America's founding mothers, University of Richmond historian Holton (Unruly Americans and the Origins of the Constitution ), drawing on the rich collection of Adams's letters and other manuscripts, paints a strong-minded woman whose boldness developed in the context of the revolutionary era in which she lived. Holton offers a captivating portrait of a reformer both inside and outside the home. Best known for exhorting her husband, John Adams, to “remember the ladies” in devising America's new political system, she also, Holton has discovered, wrote a will leaving most of her property to her granddaughters, in defiance of the law that made her husband the master of all she owned. Furthermore, she was a businesswoman and invested her own earnings in ways John did not always approve of. Tracing Adams's life from her childhood as the daughter of a poor parson to her long and sometimes uncertain courtship with John, her joys and sorrows as a mother and her life as the wife of a president, Holton's superb biography shows us a three-dimensional Adams as a forward-thinking woman with a mind of her own. (Nov. 3)

Reviewed on: 09/14/2009
Release date: 11/01/2009
Genre: Nonfiction
Open Ebook - 512 pages - 978-1-4516-0736-9
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