October 7, 1822 – John Quincy Adams on His Importance to the Presidency of James Monroe

On this day in history, John Quincy Adams, then serving as Secretary of State to President James Monroe, wrote his wife rejecting her entreaties to come to Philadelphia and plead his case to be elected President of the U.S. As far as John Quincy Adams was concerned, it should be evident he was behind all the important policies of the Monroe Administration:

Of the Public History of Mr Monroe’s Administration, all that will be worth telling to Posterity hitherto has been transacted through the Department of State—The Treaties with Great-Britain, with Spain, with France and with Russia, and the whole course of policy with regard to South America have been all under the immediate management of that Department—They are all Events affecting not only the present interests but the future Condition of this People—The acquisition of Florida, and the extension of the territories of the Union to the Pacific Ocean, have been accomplished, through that Department; and the formal admission of our right to border upon the South-Sea, both by Spain and Great-Britain has been first obtained, I might confidently say by me—That it has been obtained through the Department of State, in Mr Monroe’s Administration, is beyond the reach of contradiction or of Events . . . “

True indeed, although as Louisa Adams understood, a little pandering by John Quincy Adams wouldn’t hurt. But he would have none of it.

You can read the entire letter here.

John Quincy Adams

John Quincy Adams


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