John Quincy Adams (1767–1848) was the sixth president of the United States. He was born on July 11, 1767, in Quincy, Massachusetts – which was called Braintree at the time.
John was introduced to politics at a young age. When he was ten, his father John Adams took him to France. He studied at European universities and was fluent in seven languages. In 1785, he entered Harvard College, graduating two years later. He then studied law and practiced his trade in Boston.
In 1794, President George Washington appointed John as a U.S. minister to the Netherlands. When John Adams was elected president in 1796, John Quincy Adams became minister to Prussia (now called Germany). When his father lost the presidency to Thomas Jefferson in 1800, young John returned to Boston. In 1802, he was elected to Massachusetts State Senate, and the next year to the U.S. Senate.
President James Monroe named John his secretary of state in 1817. He helped arrange the joint occupation of Oregon with England.
In 1824, he entered a five-way race for the White House. Opposing John Quincy Adams were Secretary of War John C. Calhoun, Secretary of the Treasury William H. Crawford, Speaker of the House Henry Clay, and General Andrew Jackson. For the first time, no candidate got a majority of electoral votes, so the House of Representatives made the choice.
Although John Quincy Adams ran for a second presidential term, he didn’t win the election. He returned home and then in 1830 won an election to the House of Representatives, where he served for the rest of his life. After suffering two strokes, John passed away at the age of 80 on February 23, 1848.