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  • Historical Eras > Revolution and New Nation (1751-1815) (x)

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Abigail Adams Reminds John Adams to "Remember the ladies"

In this famous letter, Abigail Adams shares wartime news and opinions with her husband. Already planning for the war's successful conclusion, she admonishes him to consider the rights of women when developing laws for a newly independent nation.

John Adams Argues for Limited Suffrage

Writing to his friend, James Sullivan, who was a member of the Massachusetts General Court, Adams sets forth his arguments against giving women, children, and property-less men the right to vote.

Alexander Hamilton Endorses Arming Slaves for the Revolutionary Cause

In 1778, General George Washington was approached with an interesting proposal from Lt. Col. John Laurens of South Carolina. The war in the southern colonies was going badly, in part because of a shortage of troops. Laurens's solution was to raise a [...]

A South Carolina Planter Endorses Plans for a Black Regiment

South Carolina planter and merchant, Henry Laurens was one of the richest men in colonial America. He amassed a fortune through buying and selling African slaves. Before the American Revolution, over 40% of Africans who survived transport to the [...]

John Adams Answers Abigail's Plea to "Remember the Ladies"

In this letter, John Adams offers his wife Abigail information and opinions about the ongoing war, commentary on class divisions in the southern colonies, and a flirtatious dismissal of her earlier plea that the new nation provide suffrage for women.

A Planter Proposes A Slave Regiment in the Continental Army

In this letter, John Laurens asks his father, South Carolina slaveowner Henry Laurens, to give him several slaves in lieu of his inheritance, so that he can arm them to fight in the Continental army.

A Boston Woman Describes Life on the Revolutionary Homefront

Wartime conditions thrust new responsibilities upon American women. With many husbands absent, women assumed heightened responsibilities for managing family finances and operating family farms and shops. The correspondence between Lucy Knox and her [...]

Meriwether Lewis Describes Crossing the Rocky Mountains

These selections from Meriwether Lewis' journal describe the crossing of the Rocky Mountains, a particularly hazardous stretch of the Lewis and Clark Expedition. In 1804 President Thomas Jefferson commissioned Lewis and William Clark to explore the [...]

William Clark Describes Crossing the Rocky Mountains

These selections from William Clark's journal describe the crossing of the Rocky Mountains, a particularly hazardous stretch of the Lewis and Clark Expedition. In 1804 President Thomas Jefferson commissioned Meriwether Lewis and Clark to explore [...]

Patrick Gass Describes Crossing the Rocky Mountains

These selections from Patrick Gass' journal describe the crossing of the Rocky Mountains, a particularly hazardous stretch of the Lewis and Clark Expedition. In 1804 President Thomas Jefferson commissioned Meriwether Lewis and William Clark to [...]