Historic Sites and Buildings
This frame structure was John Adams' residence and law office during the War for Independence and the birthplace of his son John Quincy. In 1744 "Deacon" John Adams had acquired the residence, the oldest part of which may date from 1663. In 1761 he bequeathed it to young John. At the time of the latter's marriage 3 years later, he moved into it from his neighboring birthplace so that he could better accommodate his library and set up a law office. In 1767 John Quincy was born in the house.
Shortly thereafter, John's growing law practice and role in public affairs made it convenient for him to live in Boston most of the time, but his wife and son remained in the Quincy home until after the War for Independence. By 1783, when the family was in Europe, tenants were occupying it. After coming back to the United States in 1788, John Adams took up residence at "Peacefield," or the "Old House," now Adams National Historic Site. In 1803 John Quincy purchased both birthplaces from his father, and from 1805 to 1807 lived in his own birthplace.
The John Quincy Adams birthplace is well preserved. Like the John Adams birthplace, it is of typical New England saltbox design, originally comprised of two upper and two lower rooms arranged around a huge central chimney, and has been extensively altered. John Adams added a lean-to of two rooms at the back for use as a new kitchen during the time he used the original kitchen as a law office-library.
In 1897 the Quincy Historical Society, aided by Adams heirs restored and opened the John Quincy Adams birthplace to the public. In 1940 the Adams family turned it over to the city of Quincy. In 1977, it was administered by the Quincy Historical Society.
Last Updated: 22-Jan-2004