But Adams did not just read books. He battled them. The casual presumption that there is some kind of rough correlation between the books in the library of any prominent historical figure and the person’s cast of mind would encounter catastrophe with Adams, because he tended to buy and read book with which he profoundly disagreed. Then, as he read, he recorded in the margins and at the bottom of the pages his usually hostile opinions of the arguments and authors.... [T]he Adams marginalia constitute evidence more revealing of his convictions about political theory than any of his official publications.
Oil on canvas; 30 x 24 in. One of the 78 scenes from American history by Ferris titled
The Pageant of a Nation. Virginia Historical S
Oil on canvas; Height: 28 ½” (72.3 cm); Width: 36 ¼” (92.7 cm). Winterthur Museum, Garden and Library; Winterthur, DE.
Black chalk, white-chalk heightening, and graphite on blue laid paper. 18 7/8 x 14 1/4 in.
Oil on canvas; 238.1 x 147 cm (93 3/4 x 57 7/8 in). Harvard University Portrait Collection, Cambridge, MA.
Oil on canvas; 34 ½ x 27 ¼ in. (90.2 x 71.3 cm). Boston Athenæum, Boston, MA.
Oil on canvas. Independence National Historical Park, Portrait Collection (Second Bank of the United States), Philadelphia, PA.
Oil on wood; 9.8 x 8.3 cm (3 7/8 x 3 1/4 in). Yale University Art Gallery, New Haven, CT.
Pastel on gray (now oxidized) laid paper. 9 1/2 x 7 7/16 in. • 24.1 x 18.9 cm. The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, NY.
Pastel on gray paper; 9 x 7 in. (22.9 x 17.8 cm). The Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, TX.