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American Experience; John and Abigail Adams


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American Experience
John and Abigail Adams
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Series Description

Premiered October 1988 As television's longest-running, most-watched history series, American Experience brings to life the incredible characters and epic stories that helped form this nation. Now in its eighteenth season, the series has produced over 180 programs and garnered every major broadcast award. Series release date: 10/1988

Program Description

Relying heavily on the extraordinary correspondence between the second president and his wife, this joint biography sheds light not only on the characters of two remarkable people, but also on the tumultuous times through which they lived. John and Abigail Adams played a critical role in many of the pivotal events of their era: he was a vociferous participant at the Continental Congress and a wartime emissary to France; she was an important eyewitness reporter during the Siege of Boston. In the post-war era, first as vice president, then as president, Adams was caught up in the increasing political divisiveness that characterized the 1790s when rifts in the country almost pulled the fledgling nation apart. Not only a window onto the revolutionary era, this program provides an intimate look inside a marriage of true companions.

This American Experience reminds us that the Founding Fathers -- and Mothers -- were not men and women of marble but rather real, flawed, multi-dimensional people, who had no idea how things would turn out.



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Broadcast program

Media Type


Chicago: “American Experience; John and Abigail Adams,” 10/20/2005, GBH Archives, accessed April 13, 2024,
MLA: “American Experience; John and Abigail Adams.” 10/20/2005. GBH Archives. Web. April 13, 2024. <>.
APA: American Experience; John and Abigail Adams. Boston, MA: GBH Archives. Retrieved from
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