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Thomas Boylston Adams (1772 - 1832)

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Thomas Boylston Adams
Born in Penns Hill Farm, Braintree, Norfolk, Massachusettsmap
Ancestors ancestors
Husband of — married in Haverhill, Essex County, Massachusettsmap
Descendants descendants
Died in Quincy, Norfolk, Massachusetts, United Statesmap
Adams-13 created 14 Dec 2008 | Last modified | Last edit: 11 Sep 2017
16:17: Robin Lee proposed a merge of Adams-17472 and Adams-13 with a comment. [Thank Robin for this]
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Categories: Children of US Presidents | Siblings of US Presidents.



Thomas Boylston Adams (September 15, 1772 – March 13, 1832) was the third and youngest son of John and Abigail (Smith) Adams.

Adams lived with relatives in Haverhill, Massachusetts during his father’s diplomatic missions in Europe, after Abigail Adams joined him in 1784. He graduated from Harvard University in 1790 and studied law at his family’s behest, but brother John Quincy Adams did not believe he had the skills to practice law successfully.

Adams accompanied his brother John Quincy in the Netherlands and Prussia from 1794 to 1798, serving as his secretary. In 1805, he married Ann Harrod of Haverhill and the couple produced seven children in only eleven years. They settled in Quincy, which he represented in the Massachusetts legislature in 1805-06. Adams was elected a Fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences in 1810.[1] In 1811, he was appointed chief justice of the Circuit Court of Common Pleas for the Southern Circuit of Massachusetts. Like his brother Charles, Thomas had problems with alcoholism. He died in Quincy in 1832, deeply in debt.

While he would prove to be an affectionate son, husband, father, brother and uncle, he began to struggle with the same alcohol demons and melancholy that had destroyed his Uncle William and his brother Charles. It is also hinted that he had begun to gamble as well.

Some years later, when the elderly John and Abigail made their wills, Thomas Boylston Adams’ share of the inheritance was put into a trust. They did not believe their forty-five-year-old son could handle the responsibilities.


"Thomas Boylston Adams son of John Adams Esq & Abigail his wife born September 15th. 1772."[1]


"Thomas Boylston. int.], Esq., of Quincy, and Ann Harrod, May 16, 1805.*"[2]


"[1832] Mar. 12 Thomas B. Adams Esq. Aged 59 years [Thomas Adams Esq. son of Hon. John late Pres. of U. S. -CR1]"[3]


  1. Braintree, MA: Vital Records, 1643-1793. (Online database., New England Historic Genealogical Society, 2006.) Transcription. By Waldo C. Sprague from the original records held at the Randolph Town Hall, donated from the estate of Mr. Sprague to NEHGS in 1962, Vol. 2:26
  2. Vital Records of Haverhill, Massachusetts to the end of the year 1849, Topsfield Historical Society, pub. Topsfield 1911, Vol. 2, p. 10
  3. Vital Records of Quincy, Massachusetts to 1875. (Online database:, New England Historic Genealogical Society, 2005), (Unpublished transcription by Waldo C. Sprague from original records held at the Randolph Town Hall, donated from the estate of Mr. Sprague to NEHGS in 1962), p. 3340, online
  • Massachusetts Historical Society online at
  • Find A Grave Memorial# 40460791

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On 11 Sep 2017 at 20:17 GMT Robin Lee wrote:

Adams-17472 and Adams-13 appear to represent the same person because: identical birth and name

Thomas is 14 degrees from Kevin Bacon, 21 degrees from Robynne Lozier, 14 degrees from Pocahontas Rolfe and 17 degrees from Queen Elizabeth II Windsor on our single family tree. Login to find your connection.

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