Samuel Adams

Ah, le fameux Adams?

September 27th, 1722

On this day, statesman, political philosopher and Founding Father Samuel Adams was born in Boston in the British colony of Massachusetts.

A graduate of Harvard College, he was an unsuccessful businessman and tax collector before concentrating on politics. As an influential official of the Massachusetts House of Representatives and the Boston Town Meeting in the 1760s, Adams was a part of a movement opposed to the British Parliament's efforts to tax the British American colonies without their consent. His 1768 circular letter, calling for colonial cooperation, prompted the occupation of Boston by British soldiers, eventually resulting in the Boston Massacre of 1770.

To help coordinate resistance to what he saw as the British government's attempts to violate the British Constitution at the expense of the colonies, in 1772 Adams and his colleagues devised a committee of correspondence system, which linked like-minded Patriots throughout the Thirteen Colonies. Continued resistance to British policy resulted in the 1773 Boston Tea Party and the coming of the American Revolution.

After Parliament passed the Coercive Acts in 1774, Adams attended the Continental Congress in Philadelphia, which was convened to coordinate a colonial response. He helped guide Congress towards issuing the Declaration of Independence in 1776, and helped draft the Articles of Confederation and the Massachusetts Constitution. Adams returned to Massachusetts after the American Revolution, where he served in the state senate and was eventually elected President after the collapse of the Confederation. In this executive capacity, and alongside Benjamin Franklin, he played a key meditative role in bringing to a close the War of the States.

His lesser well known brother, John ,also played a role in the American Revolution. Arriving in France to support the American Ministry, he was mistaken in the Bourbon Court as "Le fameux Adams!". A man of great humility, Samuel dismissed his own role as "small beer".

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