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The Adams Chronicles is a thirteen-episode miniseries by PBS that aired in 1976 to commemorate the American Bicentennial.

Contents

1 Synopsis 2 Episode list 3 Cast 4 Soundtrack 5 Awards received 6 Pronunciation note 7 DVD release 8 External links

Synopsis[edit] The series chronicles the story of the Adams political family
Adams political family
over a 150-year span, including John Adams
John Adams
(signer of the Declaration, accomplished diplomat, and the 2nd President), his wife Abigail Adams, his son John Quincy Adams
John Quincy Adams
(acclaimed Secretary of State, the 6th President, and prominent abolitionist Congressman), grandson Charles Francis Adams, congressman and ambassador to Great Britain during the Civil War, and much-heralded members of the fourth generation Henry Brooks Adams, the historian and author of the novel Democracy, and Charles Francis Adams II, the industrialist. The most prominent role in the series is John Adams, played by George Grizzard. His views dominate the series even after his death, on July 4, 1826, the 50th anniversary of the passage of the United States Declaration of Independence. As a result of his achievements during the revolution, and afterwards as vice president and president, subsequent Adams generations have a hard time dealing with this legacy of public service and accomplishment and frequently wonder if they are measuring up to their distinguished ancestry. In the end, the members of the fourth generation feel that the time in which the Adams family can play a prominent role in the affairs of the nation has passed. Episode list[edit] Chapter I: John Adams, Lawyer

John Adams, as a young man, makes the decision to become a lawyer, which gets off to a rocky start. He meets Abigail Smith, a parson's daughter, who he courts and marries. Meanwhile, his law practice grows and he becomes a respected Boston attorney, while also becoming more involved in politics as English policy becomes increasingly repressive.

Chapter II: John Adams, Revolutionary Chapter III: John Adams, Diplomat

John Adams
John Adams
and his temperament find little diplomatic success in France, where Franklin is widely appreciated. However Adams negotiates a large loan in the Netherlands. John Quincy Adams
John Quincy Adams
is dispatched to Russia as a diplomat's secretary due to his great facility for languages. Adams concludes the Treaty of Paris.

Chapter IV: John Adams, Minister to Great Britain Chapter V: John Adams, Vice President

With Gen. Washington as President, Adams becomes Vice-President and head of the Senate. When Jefferson's Republicans and Hamilton's Federalists have strongly conflicting views over the French Revolutionary war, Adams finds himself in the middle. Adams is elected second President of the United States.

Chapter VI: John Adams, President

Increasingly exasperating relations with France lead to the XYZ Affair, then the Quasi-War.

Chapter VII: John Quincy
John Quincy
Adams, Diplomat

In Ghent, Adams and his delegation struggle to negotiate an end to the War of 1812.

Chapter VIII: John Quincy
John Quincy
Adams, Secretary of State

During the Seminole War, the executions of Arbuthnot and Ambrister in Spanish Florida
Spanish Florida
create a diplomatic incident. The United States
United States
and Britain consider whether to make a joint statement on the wars in South America, but this evolves into the Monroe Doctrine. In the presidential election, Henry Clay
Henry Clay
is the kingmaker. Adams becomes sixth President.

Chapter IX: John Quincy
John Quincy
Adams, President Chapter X: John Quincy
John Quincy
Adams, Congressman Chapter XI: Charles Francis Adams, Minister to Great Britain Chapter XII: Henry Adams, Historian Chapter XIII: Charles Francis Adams II, Industrialist Cast[edit]

Adams family

George Grizzard
George Grizzard
as John Adams
John Adams
(Chapters I–VI, VIII–IX) Kathryn Walker as Abigail Adams
Abigail Adams
(Chapters I–IV) Leora Dana
Leora Dana
as Abigail Adams
Abigail Adams
(ages 44–74) (Chapters V–VI, VIII) Addison Powell as The Reverend Smith (father of Abigail Adams) (Chapter I) Nancy Marchand
Nancy Marchand
as Mrs. Smith (mother of Abigail Adams) (Chapters I–II) J. C. Powell as Charles Adams (boy) (Chapters II–III) Philip Anglim as Charles Adams (Chapter V) Tom V. V. Tammi as Thomas Adams (Chapters V–VI) Marcel Trenchard as John Quincy Adams
John Quincy Adams
(boy) (Chapter II) Steve Austin as John Quincy Adams
John Quincy Adams
(youth) (Chapter II) Steven Grover as John Quincy Adams
John Quincy Adams
(youth) (Chapter III) Mark Winkworth as John Quincy Adams
John Quincy Adams
(Chapters IV–V) David Birney
David Birney
as John Quincy Adams
John Quincy Adams
(Chapter VII only) William Daniels
William Daniels
as John Quincy Adams
John Quincy Adams
(Chapters VIII–X) Pamela Payton-Wright as Louisa Catherine Adams (Chapter VII) Katherine Houghton as Abigail Adams
Abigail Adams
II (Chapters IV, VI) Richard Cox as Col. William Stephens Smith
William Stephens Smith
(husband of Abigail Adams II) (Chapter IV) Maureen Anderman
Maureen Anderman
as Mary Catherine Hellen (wife of John Adams) (Chapters VIII–X) Steven Krey as Charles Francis Adams (boy) (Chapter VII) Thomas A. Stewart as Charles Francis Adams (Chapters VIII–X) John Beal as Charles Francis Adams (Chapters XI–XIII) Nancy Coleman
Nancy Coleman
as Abigail Brown Brooks Adams
Brooks Adams
(wife of Charles Francis Adams) (Chapters XI–XIII) Peter Brandon as Henry Adams
Henry Adams
(Chapters XII–XIII) Charles Siebert
Charles Siebert
as Charles Francis Adams II
Charles Francis Adams II
(Chapters XII–XIII) Nicholas Pryor as John Quincy Adams
John Quincy Adams
II (Chapters XII–XIII) Patricia Elliott as Minnie Adams (Chapters XII–XIII)

U.S. politicians

W. B. Brydon as Samuel Adams
Samuel Adams
(cousin of John Adams) (Chapters I–II) Curt Dawson as John Hancock
John Hancock
(Chapters I–II) William Shust as Patrick Henry
Patrick Henry
(Chapter II) John Wylie as John Dickinson (Chapter II) Robert Symonds as Benjamin Franklin
Benjamin Franklin
(Chapters II–III) Albert Stratton as Thomas Jefferson
Thomas Jefferson
(Chapters II, IV–VI) James Congdon as James Lovell (Chapter III) James Tripp as Francis Dana
Francis Dana
(Chapter III) David Hooks as George Washington
George Washington
(Chapter V) Jeremiah Sullivan as Alexander Hamilton
Alexander Hamilton
(Chapters V–VI) Michael Egan as General Knox
General Knox
(Chapter V) Karl Light as Senator Izard (Chapter V) Ken Kercheval
Ken Kercheval
as James Madison
James Madison
(Chapters V, VII) Henry Butler as James Monroe
James Monroe
(Chapters V, VII–VIII) Frederic Warringer as Samuel Otis (Chapter V) Tom Aldredge as James McHenry
James McHenry
(Chapters V–VI) Reid Shelton
Reid Shelton
as Timothy Pickering
Timothy Pickering
(Chapter VI) David O'Brien as Oliver Wolcott (Chapter VI) Josef Sommer as Charles Lee (Chapter VI) John Braden as John Marshall
John Marshall
(Chapter VI) John McQuade as General Pinckney (Chapter VI) Tom McDermott as Eldridge Gerry (Chapter VI) Robert Prosky as Benjamin Stoddert
Benjamin Stoddert
(Chapter VI) Stephen Strimpell as Ames (Chapter VI) George Hearn as Henry Clay
Henry Clay
(Chapters VII–X) Michael Wager as Albert Gallatin
Albert Gallatin
(Chapter VII) Robert Moberly as Senator Bayard (Chapter VII) Wesley Addy
Wesley Addy
as General Andrew Jackson
Andrew Jackson
(Chapters VIII–IX) Robert Phalen as John C. Calhoun
John C. Calhoun
(Chapter VIII–IX) Roger Alan Brown as Pinckney (Chapter X) Stephen D. Newman as Abraham Lincoln
Abraham Lincoln
(Chapter XI) Alexander Clark as William Seward (Chapter XI)

British dignitaries, politicians, others

John Tillinger as King George III (Chapters I–IV) James Noble as Jonathan Sewall (Chapter I) Patrick Horgan
Patrick Horgan
as Lord Howe (Chapter III) Ed Zang as English Tailor (Chapter IV) Don McHenry as Sir Clement Cotterell Dormer (Chapter IV) Jack Gwillim
Jack Gwillim
as Lord Carmarthen (Chapter IV) Robert Gerringer as Burrill
Burrill
(Chapter IV) Thomas Barbour
Thomas Barbour
as Bishop of St. Asaph (Chapter IV) William Roerick as Lord Gambier (Chapter VII) George Pentecost as Henry Goulburn
Henry Goulburn
(Chapter VII) Emery Battis as Lord John Russell (Chapter XI)

Foreign dignitaries, politicians, others

M'el Dowd
M'el Dowd
as Madame Brillon (Chapter III) Guy Sorel as Comte de Vergennes
Comte de Vergennes
(Chapter III) Taina Elg
Taina Elg
as Comtesse de Vergennes (Chapter III) C. K. Alexander as The Dutch Banker (Chapter III) Cavada Humphrey as Princess of Orange (Chapter III) Lance Davis as Louis XVI (Chapter III) Louis Turenne as M. Hauteval (Chapter VI) Christopher Lloyd
Christopher Lloyd
as Tsar Alexandre I [sic] (Chapter VII) Paul Sparer as Chancellor Rumyantsev (Chapter VII) Michael Kane as General Caulaincourt (Chapter VII) Valerie French as Countess Rostov (Chapter VII) Osvaldo Riofrancos as Don Luis de Onis
Luis de Onis
(Chapter VIII) Jean-Pierre Stewart as Alexis de Tocqueville
Alexis de Tocqueville
(Chapter X) Norman Bush as Cinque (Chapter X)

Other Americans

John Houseman
John Houseman
as Justice Gridley (Chapter I) Reno Roop as Josiah Quincy (cousin of John Adams) (Chapter II) Alfred Hinckley as Capt. Hay (Chapter IV) Robin Pearson Rose as Polly Jefferson (Chapter V) Donald C. Moore as Sparhawk (Chapter IV) Edwin Owens as Russell Jarvis
Russell Jarvis
(Chapter IX) Jerome Dempsey as Lewis Tappan
Lewis Tappan
(Chapter X) Tom Hulce
Tom Hulce
as Student (Chapter X) Bernie McInerney as Roger Sherman Baldwin
Roger Sherman Baldwin
(Chapter X) Ronald Dawson as Chief Justice Taney
Chief Justice Taney
(Chapter X) John Ramsey as Henry James
Henry James
(Chapter XII) Paul Hecht as Jay Gould
Jay Gould
(Chapter XIII) James Broderick
James Broderick
as W. H. Holcomb (Chapter XIII) Barton Heyman as Capt. Beckford (Chapter VII) John Horn as Lt. Mountgarret (Chapter VII) Susan Bjurman

Soundtrack[edit]

"The Liberty Song" (Chapter II) "Believe Me, if All Those Endearing Young Charms" (Chapter VIII)

Awards received[edit] The Adams Chronicles won a number of Emmy Awards for television excellence. These included: Outstanding Achievement in Costume Design for a Drama
Drama
or Comedy Series – 1977 The Adams Chronicles – PBS – Alvin Colt, Costume Designer Outstanding Achievement in Lighting Direction – 1977 The Adams Chronicles – PBS – William C. Knight, Lighting Director; George Riesenberger, Lighting Director Outstanding Achievement in Tape Sound Mixing – 1977 The Adams Chronicles – PBS – Emil Neroda, Sound Mixer Outstanding Art Direction or Scenic Design for a Drama
Drama
Series – 1977 The Adams Chronicles – PBS – Ed Wittstein, Production Designer Outstanding Directing in a Drama
Drama
Series – 1977 The Adams Chronicles – PBS – Fred Coe, Director Outstanding Limited Series – 1977 The Adams Chronicles – PBS – James Cellan-Jones, Producer; Fred Coe, Producer; Robert Costello, Coordinating Producer; Virginia Kassel, Series Producer; Jac Venza, Executive Producer Outstanding Writing in a Drama
Drama
Series – 1977 The Adams Chronicles – PBS – Tad Mosel, Writer The Adams Chronicles – PBS – Roger O. Hirson, Writer Outstanding Achievement in Art Direction or Scenic Design – 1976 The Adams Chronicles – PBS – Ed Wittstein, Art Director Outstanding Achievement in Costume Design for a Drama
Drama
Series – 1976 The Adams Chronicles – PBS – Alvin Colt, Costume Designer Outstanding Achievement in Graphic Design and Title – 1976 The Adams Chronicles – PBS – Girish Bhargava, Graphic Design; Bill Mandel, Graphic Design Outstanding Achievement in Lighting Direction – 1976 The Adams Chronicles – PBS – Billy Knight, Lighting Director; Dick Weiss, Lighting Director Outstanding Achievement in Technical Direction – 1976 The Adams Chronicles – PBS – Leonard Chumbley, Technical Director; Walter Edel, Cameraman; John Feher, Cameraman; Steve Zink, Cameraman Outstanding Achievement in Video Tape Editing for a Series – 1976 The Adams Chronicles – PBS – Girish Bhargava, Editor; Manford Schorn, Editor Outstanding Lead Actor in a Limited Series – 1976 The Adams Chronicles – PBS – George Grizzard Outstanding Lead Actress for a Single Performance – 1976 The Adams Chronicles – PBS – Kathryn Walker The Adams Chronicles – PBS – Pamela Payton-Wright Outstanding Limited Series – 1976 The Adams Chronicles – PBS – Paul Bogart, Producer; Fred Coe, Producer; Robert Costello, Producer; James Cellan Jones, Producer; Virginia Kassel, Series Producer; Jac Venza, Executive Producer Outstanding Writing in a Drama
Drama
Series – 1976 The Adams Chronicles – PBS – Sherman Yellen, Writer Pronunciation note[edit] The series uses the historically correct pronunciation /ˈkwɪnzi/ for Quincy, rather than the more common /ˈkwɪnsi/. (See relevant discussion here.) DVD release[edit] The Adams Chronicles series was released on DVD by Acorn Media on May 13, 2008. External links[edit]

The Adams Chronicles on IMDb

v t e

John Adams

2nd President of the United States, 1797–1801 1st Vice President of the United States, 1789–1797 U.S. Ambassador to the United Kingdom, 1785–1788 U.S. Ambassador to the Netherlands, 1782–1788 Delegate, Second Continental Congress, 1775–1778 Delegate, First Continental Congress, 1774

Founding of the United States

Braintree Instructions (1765) Boston Massacre defense Continental Association Novanglus; A History of the Dispute with America, From Its Origin in 1754 to the Present Time (1775) Thoughts on Government
Thoughts on Government
(1776) Declaration of Independence

May 15 preamble Committee of Five

Model Treaty

Treaty of Amity and Commerce Treaty of Alliance

Board of War Chairman of the Marine Committee, 1775-1779

Continental Navy

Staten Island Peace Conference

Conference House

Constitution of Massachusetts (1780) Treaty of Paris, 1783

Presidency

Inauguration Quasi War with France

XYZ Affair Commerce Protection Act United States
United States
Marine Corps Convention of 1800

Alien and Sedition Acts

Naturalization Act of 1798

Navy Department Library Treaty of Tellico Treaty of Tripoli Midnight Judges Act

Marbury v. Madison

State of the Union Address (1797 1798 1799 1800) Cabinet Federal judiciary appointments

Other writings

Massachusetts Historical Society holdings

Adams Papers Editorial Project

Life and homes

Early life and education Adams National Historical Park

John Adams
John Adams
Birthplace Family home and John Quincy Adams
John Quincy Adams
birthplace Peacefield Presidential Library

Massachusetts Hall, Harvard University Presidents House, Philadelphia Co-founder and second president, American Academy of Arts and Sciences United First Parish Church and gravesite

Elections

United States
United States
presidential election 1788–1789 1792 1796 1800

Legacy

Adams House at Harvard University John Adams
John Adams
Building U.S. Postage stamps Adams Memorial

Popular culture

Profiles in Courage
Profiles in Courage
(1964 series) American Primitive (1969 play) 1776 (1969 musical 1972 film) The Adams Chronicles (1976 miniseries) Liberty! (1997 documentary series) Liberty's Kids
Liberty's Kids
(2002 animated series) John Adams
John Adams
(2001 book 2008 miniseries) Sons of Liberty (2015 miniseries)

Related

"Adams and Liberty" campaign song Adams' personal library American Enlightenment Congress Hall Federalist Party

Federalist Era First Party System republicanism

American Philosophical Society Gazette of the United States The American Museum American Revolution

patriots

Family

Abigail Adams

wife Quincy family

Abigail Adams
Abigail Adams
Smith (daughter) John Quincy
John Quincy
Adams

son presidency

Charles Adams (son) Thomas Boylston Adams (son) George W. Adams (grandson) Charles Adams Sr. (grandson) John Adams
John Adams
II (grandson) John Q. Adams (great-grandson) Henry Adams
Henry Adams
(great-grandson) Brooks Adams
Brooks Adams
(great-grandson) John Adams
John Adams
Sr. (father) Susanna Boylston (mother) Elihu Adams (brother) Samuel Adams
Samuel Adams
(second cousin) Louisa Adams

daughter-in-law First Lady

← George Washington Thomas Jefferson
Thomas Jefferson

Category

v t e

John Quincy
John Quincy
Adams

United States
United States
House of Representatives, 1831–1848 6th President of the United States, 1825–1829 8th U.S. Secretary of State, 1817–1825 U.S. Ambassador to the United Kingdom, 1814–1817 1st U.S. Minister to Russia, 1809–1814 Massachusetts State Senate, 1803–1808 U.S. Minister to Prussia, 1797–1801 U.S. Ambassador to the Netherlands, 1794–1797

Presidency

Inauguration American System Internal improvements Tariff of 1828 First Treaty of Prairie du Chien Treaty of Fond du Lac Treaty of Limits United States
United States
Naval Observatory Abdulrahman Ibrahim Ibn Sori State of the Union Address, 1825 1827 1828 Federal judiciary appointments

Other events

Monroe Doctrine, author Treaty of Ghent Adams–Onís Treaty Treaty of 1818 Smithsonian Institution United States
United States
v. The Amistad

Mendi Bible

President, American Academy of Arts and Sciences President, Columbian Institute for the Promotion of Arts and Sciences

Writings

Lifelong diary Massachusetts Historical Society holdings

Adams Papers Editorial Project

Life and homes

Early life Abigail Adams
Abigail Adams
Cairn John Quincy Adams
John Quincy Adams
and abolitionism Adams National Historical Park

Birthplace and family home Peacefield Presidential Library

United First Parish Church and gravesite

Elections

United States
United States
presidential election, 1824

Corrupt Bargain

United States
United States
presidential election, 1828

Legacy

Adams Memorial Adams House at Harvard University U.S. Postage stamps Monroe Doctrine
Monroe Doctrine
Centennial half dollar

Popular culture

Profiles in Courage
Profiles in Courage
(1957 book 1965 television series) The Adams Chronicles (1976 miniseries) Mutiny on the Amistad
Mutiny on the Amistad
(1987 book) Amistad (1997 film) John Adams
John Adams
(2001 book 2008 miniseries)

Adams family Quincy family

Louisa Adams
Louisa Adams
(wife) George W. Adams (son) Charles Adams Sr. (son) John Adams
John Adams
II (son) Henry Adams
Henry Adams
(grandson) Brooks Adams
Brooks Adams
(grandson) John Quincy Adams
John Quincy Adams
II (grandson) John Adams

father presidency

Abigail Adams

mother First Lady Quincy family

Abigail Adams
Abigail Adams
Smith (sister) Charles Adams (brother) Thomas Boylston Adams (brother) John Adams
John Adams
Sr. (paternal grandfather) Susanna Boylston (paternal grandmother) Elihu Adams (paternal uncle) John Quincy
John Quincy
(great-grandfather)

Related

National Republican Party Republicanism Quincy Patriot

← James Monroe Andrew Jackson
Andrew Jackson

.