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By Jim Whiting

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Sample text

Her strength and wisdom left a lasting mark on the fledgling United States of America.

She had to sell them to make ends meet. Most of all, she missed his physical presence. At Christmastime in 1780, she wrote, “Separated by a cruel destiny, I feel the pangs of absence sometimes too sensibly for my own repose. . ”1 Meanwhile, American military forces had suffered a number of losses to the British during the year. The defeat of the Revolutionary cause seemed inevitable. Almost miraculously, the situation turned around dramatically the following year. Benjamin Franklin’s diplomatic efforts bore fruit and the French became much more involved in the American cause.

She read a great deal about current affairs. She wrote many letters. She even had a brief exchange of letters with Jefferson. The two of them had written frequently to each other before their political differences drove them apart. Jefferson’s daughter Polly died in 1804. Abigail remembered how close she had felt to Polly seventeen years earlier. Remembering the deaths of her own young daughters, she wrote a letter of sympathy to Jefferson. To her surprise, Jefferson’s response included an explanation of their political differences.

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Abigail Adams by Jim Whiting


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