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FOURTH ANNUAL ADDRESS.
UNITED STATES, November 22, 1800.
Gentlemen of the Senate and Gentlemen of the House of Representatives:
Immediately after the adjournment of Congress at their last session in Philadelphia I gave directions, in compliance with the laws, for the removal of the public offices, records, and property. These directions have been executed, and the public officers have since resided and conducted the ordinary business of the Government in this place.
I congratulate the people of the United States on the assembling of Congress at the permanent seat of their Government, and I congratulate you, gentlemen, on the prospect of a residence not to be changed. Although there is cause to apprehend that accommodations are not now so complete as might be wished, yet there is great reason to believe that this inconvenience will cease with the present session.
It would be unbecoming the representatives of this nation to assemble for the first time in this solemn temple without looking up to the Supreme Ruler of the Universe and imploring His blessing.
May this territory be the residence of virtue and happiness ! In this city may that piety and virtue, that wisdom and magnanimity, that constancy and selfgovernment, which adorned the great character whose name it bears be forever held in veneration! Here and throughout our country may simple manners, pure morals, and true religion flourish forever!
It is with you, gentlemen, to consider whether the local powers over the District of Columbia vested by the Constitution in the Congress of the United States shall be immediately exercised. If in your opinion this important trust ought now to be executed, you can not fail while performing it to take into view the future probable situation of the territory for the happiness of which you are about to provide. You will consider it as the capital of a great nation advancing with unexampled rapidity in arts, in commerce, in wealth, and in population, and possessing within itself those energies and resources which, if not thrown away or lamentably misdirected, will secure to it a long course of prosperity and selfgovernment.
In compliance with a law of the last session of Congress, the officers and soldiers of the temporary army have been discharged. It affords real pleasure to recollect the honorable testimony they gave of the patriotic motives which brought them into the service of their country, by the readiness and regularity with which they returned to the station of private citizens.
It is in every point of view of such primary importance to carry the laws into prompt and faithful execution, and to render that part of the administration of justice which the Constitution and laws devolve on the Federal courts as convenient to the people as may consist with their present circumstances, that I can not omit once more to recommend to your serious consideration the judiciary system of the United States. No subject is more interesting than this to the public happiness, and to none can those improvements which may have been suggested by experience be more beneficially applied.
A treaty of amity and commerce with the King of Prussia has been concluded and ratified. The ratifications have been exchanged, and I have directed the treaty to be promulgated by proclamation.
The difficulties which suspended the execution of the sixth article of our treaty of amity, commerce, and navigation with Great Britain have not yet been removed. The negotiation on this subject is still depending. As it must be for the interest and honor of both nations to adjust this difference with good faith, I indulge confidently the expectation that the sincere endeavors of the Government of the United States to bring it to an amicable termination will not be disappointed.
The envoys extraordinary and ministers plenipotentiary from the United States to France were received by the First Consul with the respect due to their character, and three persons with equal powers were appointed to treat with them. Although at the date of the last official intelligence the negotiation had not terminated, yet it is to be hoped that our efforts to effect an accommodation will at length meet with a success proportioned to the sincerity with which they have been so often repeated.
While our best endeavors for the preservation of harmony with all nations will continue to be used, the experience of the world and our own experience admonish us of the insecurity of trusting too confidently to their success. We can not, without committing a dangerous imprudence, abandon those measures of selfprotection which are adapted to our situation and to which, notwithstanding our pacific policy, the violence and injustice of others may again compel us to resort While our vast extent of seacoast, the commercial and agricultural habits of our people, the great capital they will continue to trust on the ocean, suggest the system of defense which will be most beneficial to ourselves, our distance from Europe and our resources for maritime strength will enable us to employ it with effect. Seasonable and systematic arrangements, so far as our resources will justify, for a navy adapted to defensive war, and which may in case of necessity be quickly brought into use, seem to be as much recommended by a wise and true economy as by a just regard for our future tranquillity, for the safety of our shores, and for the protection of our property committed to the ocean.
The present Navy of the United States, called suddenly into existence by a great national exigency, has raised us in our own esteem, and by the protection afforded to our commerce has effected to the extent of our expectations the objects for which it was created.
In connection with a navy ought to be contemplated the fortification of some of our principal seaports and harbors. A variety of considerations, which will readily suggest themselves, urge an attention to this measure of precaution. To give security to our principal ports considerable sums have already been expended, but the works remain incomplete. It is for Congress to determine whether additional appropriations shall be made in order to render competent to the intended purposes the fortifications which have been commenced.
The manufacture of arms within the United States still invites the attention of the National Legislature. At a considerable expense to the public this manufacture has been brought to such a state of maturity as, with continued encouragement, will supersede the necessity of future importations from foreign countries.
Gentlemen of the House of Representatives:
I shall direct the estimates of the appropriations necessary for the ensuing year, together with an account of the public revenue and expenditure to a late period, to be laid before you. I observe with much satisfaction that the product of the revenue during the present year has been more considerable than during any former equal period. This result affords conclusive evidence of the great resources of this country and of the wisdom and efficiency of the measures which have been adopted by Congress for the protection of commerce and preservation of public credit.
Gentlemen of the Senate and Gentlemen of the House of Representatives:
As one of the grand community of nations, our attention is irresistibly drawn to the important scenes which surround us. If they have exhibited an uncommon portion of calamity, it is the province of humanity to deplore and of wisdom to avoid the causes which may have produced it. If, turning our eyes homeward, we find reason to rejoice at the prospect which presents itself; if we perceive the interior of our country prosperous, free, and happy; if all enjoy in safety, under the protection of laws emanating only from the general will, the fruits of their own labor, we ought to fortify and cling to those institutions which have been the source of such real felicity and resist with unabating perseverance the progress of those dangerous innovations which may diminish their influence.
To your patriotism, gentlemen, has been confided the honorable duty of guarding the public interests; and while the past is to your country a sure pledge that it will be faithfully discharged, permit me to assure you that your labors to promote the general happiness will receive from me the most zealous cooperation.
Adams4 address - History
Our story began in 1916 when G.D. Adams founded Lemoyne State Bank in Lemoyne, Nebraska. In 1934, the construction of Lake McConaughy and Kingsley Dam caused the town of Lemoyne to relocate. G.D. moved the bank to Brule. The foundation of Lemoyne State Bank remains under the waters of Lake McConaughy.
Between 1962 and 1972, Melvin Sr., and Mel (Melvin Jr.) opened four more banks in Imperial, Sutherland, Madrid, and Ogallala. In 1986, revised banking laws permitted the five banks to merge under one name, Adams Bank & Trust, and made its headquarters in Ogallala, Nebraska.
Today, Todd and Chad Adams (sons of Mel) serve as CEO and President, respectively. Under their leadership, Adams Bank & Trust has grown to over $1 billion in assets and 20 branches in Nebraska, Colorado, and Kansas.
Todd and Chad are joined at Adams Bank & Trust by their family members: Melanie (Adams) Washa, Call Center Specialist (Todd and Chad's sister) Mandy (Adams) Hoover, Chief Financial Officer (Todd's daughter) Jessop Adams, Executive Vice President - Commercial Banking (Chad's son) Benjamin Washa, Vice President - Mortgage Banking (Melanie's Son) and Jacob Hovendick, Branch Manager, Raymond James Financial Services (Laurie (Adams) Hovendick's son Todd and Chad's nephew).
Adams County, Ohio Travel and Visitors Bureau
Seasonal produce, local honey and fresh beef. Located on the Court House Square 110 Main Street in downtown West Union, OH. Starting May 8th running through September 25th.
Every Saturday from 9 AM to 1 PM.
You can like us on our Facebook page or send us a message there @ https://www.facebook.com/pg/acohfarmersmarket/about/
Lion's Club 4th of July Parade
The July 4th Lions Club Parade in West Union - 9 AM line up. Parade starts at 10 AM next to Olde Wayside Inn.
27 Listings for Historical Attractions
Adams County Genealogy Society
P.O. Box 231 - 507 N cherry Street
West Union, Ohio 45693
Adams County Historical Society
507 N. Cherry St.
West Union, OH 45693
Adams County Paleo-Indian District
One of the Largest Paleo Indian Sites in North America which has produced over 100 fluted points.It is believed that the first men came across a 'land bridge,' a large land area that connected Alaska and Siberia. They were hunters and gatherers and did no farming. They had no permanent campsites and were in the constant pursuit of game. Archaeologists have no definite proof but believe that these Pa leo-Indians entered the Ohio region as early as 11,500 B.C.The Paleo-Indians may have entered Adams County from the north and west. Several of their distinctive 'fluted' points have been found in the county. Since they are the only people to utilize the fluted point, these early hunters are known as the Fluted Point Complex.About 9,500 B.C. another group of Pa leo-Indians moved into the Brush Creek Valley and intermingled with the Fluted Point Complex. They are known as the Plano Complex. Their weapons differed from their predecessors'. The once popular fluted points gave way to the un fluted and stemmed varieties. All spear points and tools are considered rare since the Pa leo-Indians were of a nomadic nature having no permanent villages or kill sites.
Sandy Springs Vicinity ,
Bentonville Anti-Horse Thief Society Monument
The Anti-Horse Thief Society has been in existence since 1853. It was originally created to retrieve stolen horses and bring the thieves to justice. The monument was placed in Bentonville in 1961.
State Route 41
Buckeye Station was built by General Nathaniel Massie in 1797. The home was one of the oldest frame houses built in the State of Ohio. General Massie lived in this home until about 1802 when he sold it to his brother-in-law, Charles Willing Byrd, Secretary of the Northwest Territory. This old home was located on Possum Hollow Road. A monument can be seen on U. S. Route 52 just east of Manchester, Ohio.
East of Manchester off of U.S. 52
Cairn of Peace
This monument commemorated the World's Plowing Match held near Peebles in 1957. The monument is an exact replica of a 12th century European plow. Northern Ireland, Sweden, Germany, New Zealand, and many other countries came together peaceably for a common purpose. The grounds covered 2,000 acres and took in 17 farms. One-hundred and forty exhibitors set up displays for the five-day event.
The Adams County Fairgrounds, established at this site in October 1853, on seven acres of land donated by Judge George Collings, was converted to a Civil War training camp named in honor of General Thomas Hamer, a Mexican War hero, of Georgetown, Ohio. The old stone Courthouse was made into a hospital to serve the camp. The 70th Ohio Volunteer infantry, organized in October 1861, trained on the old fairgrounds until Christmas day 1861, when it marched from Camp Hamer to Ripley. The 70th participated in the battles of Shiloh, Tennessee Atlanta, George the siege at Vicksburg, Mississippi, and Sherman's March to the Sea.
The corner of West and South St
West Union , Ohio 45693
Covenanter Church Historical Marker
Marks the site of the original church building. It is about one-quarter mile south of the village on State Route 136 in the Village cemetery.
Dr. A. C. Lewis House
Dr. A. C. Lewis home was built between 1845 and 1848 in Winchester. Dr. Lewis was the first resident physician. He was a known abolitionist and used this house as a station on the underground railroad.
103 South Street
Governor Thomas Kirker, Homestead & Gravesite
The hewn stone section of the house is the original home of Ohio's second governor. It was erected in 1805. The stonemason was Thomas Metcalf, later a governor of Kentucky. It is located on State Route 136 and Township Road 21. The two-story addition, now the front of the home, was built in 1852 by George Kirker, son of the governor. George Kirker later served as a Captain in the Civil War. It is privately owned.
Harshaville Covered Bridge
The Harshaville Covered Bridge is the last covered bridge still used in Adams County. It was built before the Civil War, circa 1855, and was used by Confederate General John Morgan and his Raiders when they passed through the county during the Civil War. It is on Graces Run Road in Harshaville.
6450 Graces Run Road
West Union, Ohio 45693
John T. Wilson Homestead
92 Old State Route 32
Peebles, Ohio 45660
Kinfolk Landing - Ohio River & Historical Marker
Manchester's boating ramp to the Ohio River. The Ohio River is 981 miles long, starting at the confluence of the Allegheny & the Monongahela Rivers in Pittsburgh, PA, and ending in Cairo, IL, where it flows into the Mississippi River. The Ohio river offers approximately 164 species of fish to the avid angler. During the Summer and Fall months large Paddlewheelers travel the river. 'Manchester, Ohio - First Settlement-Virginia Military District'In 1784, the state of Virginia ceded all of its Northwest Territory to the federal government except for this tract to satisfy the land bounties owed to its Revolutionary War soldiers. The Virginia Military District extended from the Scioto River in the east to the Little Miami River in the west, and from the Ohio River on the south to the town of Kenton in the north. The District contained over 4 million acres of land. Nathaniel Massie founded Manchester, which is the fourth oldest settlement in Ohio, as a base for his surveying operations. Manchester, sometimes called Massie's Station, was founded in 1791, populated largely by settlers coming from Kentucky and Virginia.
'Manchester, Ohio - First Settlement-Virginia Military District'In 1784, the state of Virginia ceded all of its Northwest Territory to the federal government except for this tract to satisfy the land bounties owed to its Revolutionary War soldiers. The Virginia Military District extended from the Scioto River in the east to the Little Miami River in the west, and from the Ohio River on the south to the town of Kenton in the north. The District contained over 4 million acres of land. Nathaniel Massie founded Manchester, which is the fourth oldest settlement in Ohio, as a base for his surveying operations. Manchester, sometimes called Massie's Station, was founded in 1791, populated largely by settlers coming from Kentucky and Virginia.
6352 US 52
Manchester, Ohio 45144
Kirker Covered Bridge
Completed Circa 1890. This is the second to last-covered bridge to be used in the state highway system. It is no longer in use but can be seen from St. Rt. 136.
7430 HWY 136 - SW of West Union off of State Route 136
West Union , Ohio 45693
In earlier times there were three islands, but only two remain. Legend has it that often the Indians would disguise themselves as white men and ambush settlers who were traveling the Ohio River. They are now a National Wildlife Refuge under the supervision of the U. S. Fish and Wildlife Service.
- Ohio River
Manchester, Ohio 45144
Massie Station Historical Marker
The settlement where Nathaniel Massie and his followers erected several cabins within a fort complete with blockhouses for defense against the Indians by 1791.
US HWY 52 and Cemetery Ave
Manchester, Ohio 45144
- Near The Intersection of Mineral Springs Road and Peach Mountain Lane.
Mineral Springs, OH 45660
Moore's Memorial Chapel
The present structure is located on the original site of the first Methodist Church built in Ohio and the old Northwest Territory. The original church building was erected in August of 1800. Rev. Joseph Moore organized the church in 1795 or 1796. The pulpit was constructed from sixteen kinds of native wood.
2523 Township Highway T-162A - Located 1/4 mile up Wintersteen Run
Blue Creek, Ohio 45616
Olde Wayside Inn
Home cooked meals at the historic "Bradford Tavern" built in 1804. A registered Ohio historical landmark. The Olde Wayside Inn was originally built by General David Bradford in 1804 and was known as Bradford's Tavern. The inn is of log construction. General Andrew Jackson and Mexican General Santa Anna were entertained here. The Olde Wayside is still used today providing home cooked meals.
222 W Main St
West Union, Ohio 45693
Serpent Mound is one of the few effigy mounds in Ohio. It is the largest and finest serpent effigy in the United States. The museum contains exhibits on the mound and the geology of the surrounding area, known as the Serpent Mound crypto explosion structure. It is located on State Route 73 six miles north of State Route 32. It is operated and maintained by the Ohio Historical Society. Serpent Mound is open year round, although hours vary with the seasons. Museum hours also vary. There are special hours for schools and other groups by appointment. Please call 937-587-2796 for more information. Serpent Mound is one of the few effigy mounds in Ohio. It is the largest and finest serpent effigy in the United States. The museum contains exhibits on the mound and the geology of the surrounding area, known as the Serpent Mound crypto explosion structure. It is located on State Route 73 six miles north of State Route 32. It is operated and maintained by the Ohio Historical Society. Serpent Mound is open year round, although hours vary with the seasons. Museum hours also vary. There are special hours for schools and other groups by appointment. See this page for more detailed information on park hours.
Features a short, 1/4-mile, trail that winds downhill to the Brush Creek valley. Considered a moderate hike, the trail is at its best during the early spring when Trilliums cover the hillsides.
Please call 937-587-2796 for more information.
Serpent Mound State Memorial - 3850 State Route 73 (5 miles NW of Locust Grove on State Route 73)
Peebles, Ohio 45660
The Page One-Room Schoolhouse Museum
In 2001, the Adams County Retired Teachers purchased Page School. Their goal was to renovate the school as a museum for the students and adults of Adams County. The school was opened in September of 2006 and in the spring of 2007, over 300 3rd grade students visited for lessons and games. The school is located north of West Union off SR 41 at the intersection of Page School Rd and Vaughn Ridge Road. For more information or to plan a visit call, Mary Fulton 937-587-2043 or Carol Motza 937-373-3724.
Page School Rd and Vaughn Ridge Rd. - Corner of Page School Road and Vaughn Ridge Road
West Union , Ohio 45693
The Treber Inn
Erected in 1798, a two-story log structure built by gunsmith John Treber, one of the oldest documented buildings standing in the state. For over four decades it served as a wayside inn and stagecoach stop on Zane's Trace, Ohio's first authorized road (SR 41). Listed on the National Registry of Historical Places, N of West Union on SR 41, privately owned and not opened to the public.
St Rt 41
West Union, Ohio 45693
West Union United Presbyterian Church
The West Union United Presbyterian Church was built of hewn stone in 1810. The stonemason was Thomas Metcalf who later became Governor of Kentucky. Governor Thomas Kirker was instrumental in getting the church built. This is the oldest church structure in Ohio still in use as a church.
104 S Second St
West Union, Ohio
This brick home was originally a tavern built by Peter Wickerham in 1801 on Zane's Trace. When Morgan's Raiders passed through the county in 1863, Confederate soldiers slept at this Inn. This is possibly the oldest existing brick structure in Adams County. It was used as the headquarters during the World's Plowing Match held 1957. It is located on State Route 41 between Peebles and Locust Grove. It is a private residence.
William Lafferty Memorial Funeral and Carriage Collection
The collection consists of antique hearses and other funeral service vehicles, both motorized and horse-drawn. The horse-drawn vehicles and memorabilia date from 1848. The collection is dedicated to James William Lafferty (1912- 1987), the 4th generation of the Lafferty family to serve West Union and surrounding areas of Adams County in the funeral business. Due to his preservation of family carriages and to his acquisition of additional funeral vehicles, this collection is available for your viewing and interest. The collection is open on Saturday from 10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. or by chance or appointment.
205 S Cherry St
West Union, Ohio
Wilson's Soldier's Monument
The Wilson's Soldier's Monument was erected in 1893 as a memorial to the men of Adams County who died in the Civil War. The monument stands in front of the Wilson's Children Home. Both the home and the monument were donated to the people of Adams County by the Hon. John T. Wilson of Tranquility. Wilson lost his only son in the Civil War. Adams County's own Drummer Boy of Shiloh, Col. John A. Cockerill, unveiled the monument June 10, 1893.
300 N Wilson Dr
West Union , Ohio 45693
Zane's Trace Monument
The Great Hall: History and Design
The Great Hall serves as a ceremonial space, an exhibition space, and a grand internal corridor linking Pemberton Square and Government Center to Ashburton Place and the Massachusetts State House on Beacon Hill. Albert Haberstroh, of the Boston firm of L. Haberstoh & Son, designed the mural decorations in the Great Hall.
Bands of classical coffers with rosettes demarcate the barrel vaulted ceiling of the Great Hall. The ceiling's central painted panel features the seal of the Commonwealth, which depicts a Native American holding an arrow pointed downward in a gesture of peace. A blue ribbon surrounding the figure contains the Latin phrase, "Ense petit placidam sub libertate quietam" ("By the sword we seek peace, but peace only under liberty").
Sculptor Domingo Mora
The Spanish sculptor, Domingo Mora (1840-1911), created sixteen life-sized allegorical figures for the Great Hall. Beginning with the figure closest to the North Elevator, these figures represent Law, Temperance, Prudence, Justice, Fortitude, Punishment, Guilt, Equity, Right, Innocence, Reward, Wisdom, Religion, Virtue, Reason, and Legislation.
Also in the Great Hall is a bronze statue of the noted Massachusetts attorney and statesman Rufus Choate (1799-1859). Choate was regarded as Boston's finest trial attorney of his time and served in the United States House of Representatives (1830-1834) and the United States Senate (1841-1845). He was also a great defender of the institution of an independent judiciary as envisioned by John Adams and spoke eloquently in its defense at the state constitutional convention of 1853.
Jane Addams Political Life
Having quickly found that the needs of the neighborhood could not be met unless city and state laws were reformed, Addams challenged both boss rule in the immigrant neighborhood of Hull-House and indifference to the needs of the poor in the state legislature. She was appointed to Chicago’s Board of Education in 1905 and helped found the Chicago school of Civics and Philanthropy before becoming the first female president of the National Conference of Charities and Corrections.
Addams and other Hull-House residents sponsored legislation to abolish child labor, establish juvenile courts, limit the hours of working women, recognize labor unions, make school attendance compulsory and ensure safe working conditions in factories. The Progressive party adopted many of these reforms as part of its platform in 1912. At the party’s national convention, Addams seconded the nomination of Theodore Roosevelt for president and campaigned actively on his behalf. She advocated for women’s suffrage because she believed that women’s votes would provide the margin necessary to pass social legislation she favored.
Addams publicized Hull-House and the causes she believed in by lecturing and writing. In her autobiography, 20 Years at Hull-House (1910), she argued that society should both respect the values and traditions of immigrants and help the newcomers adjust to American institutions. A new social ethic was needed, she said, to stem social conflict and address the problems of urban life and industrial capitalism. Although tolerant of other ideas and social philosophies, Addams believed in Christian morality and the virtue of learning by doing.
History Club – Old
In compliance with an usage coeval with the existence of our Federal Constitution, and sanctioned by the example of my predecessors in the career upon which I am about to enter, I appear, my fellow-citizens, in your presence and in that of Heaven to bind myself by the solemnities of religious obligation to the faithful performance of the duties allotted to me in the station to which I have been called.
In unfolding to my countrymen the principles by which I shall be governed in the fulfillment of those duties my first resort will be to that Constitution which I shall swear to the best of my ability to preserve, protect, and defend. That revered instrument enumerates the powers and prescribes the duties of the Executive Magistrate, and in its first words declares the purposes to which these and the whole action of the Government instituted by it should be invariably and sacredly devoted–to form a more perfect union, establish justice, insure domestic tranquillity, provide for the common defense, promote the general welfare, and secure the blessings of liberty to the people of this Union in their successive generations. Since the adoption of this social compact one of these generations has passed away. It is the work of our forefathers. Administered by some of the most eminent men who contributed to its formation, through a most eventful period in the annals of the world, and through all the vicissitudes of peace and war incidental to the condition of associated man, it has not disappointed the hopes and aspirations of those illustrious benefactors of their age and nation. It has promoted the lasting welfare of that country so dear to us all it has to an extent far beyond the ordinary lot of humanity secured the freedom and happiness of this people. We now receive it as a precious inheritance from those to whom we are indebted for its establishment, doubly bound by the examples which they have left us and by the blessings which we have enjoyed as the fruits of their labors to transmit the same unimpaired to the succeeding generation.
In the compass of thirty-six years since this great national covenant was instituted a body of laws enacted under its authority and in conformity with its provisions has unfolded its powers and carried into practical operation its effective energies. Subordinate departments have distributed the executive functions in their various relations to foreign affairs, to the revenue and expenditures, and to the military force of the Union by land and sea. A coordinate department of the judiciary has expounded the Constitution and the laws, settling in harmonious coincidence with the legislative will numerous weighty questions of construction which the imperfection of human language had rendered unavoidable. The year of jubilee since the first formation of our Union has just elapsed that of the declaration of our independence is at hand. The consummation of both was effected by this Constitution.
Since that period a population of four millions has multiplied to twelve. A territory bounded by the Mississippi has been extended from sea to sea. New States have been admitted to the Union in numbers nearly equal to those of the first Confederation. Treaties of peace, amity, and commerce have been concluded with the principal dominions of the earth. The people of other nations, inhabitants of regions acquired not by conquest, but by compact, have been united with us in the participation of our rights and duties, of our burdens and blessings. The forest has fallen by the ax of our woodsmen the soil has been made to teem by the tillage of our farmers our commerce has whitened every ocean. The dominion of man over physical nature has been extended by the invention of our artists. Liberty and law have marched hand in hand. All the purposes of human association have been accomplished as effectively as under any other government on the globe, and at a cost little exceeding in a whole generation the expenditure of other nations in a single year.
Such is the unexaggerated picture of our condition under a Constitution founded upon the republican principle of equal rights. To admit that this picture has its shades is but to say that it is still the condition of men upon earth. From evil–physical, moral, and political–it is not our claim to be exempt. We have suffered sometimes by the visitation of Heaven through disease often by the wrongs and injustice of other nations, even to the extremities of war and, lastly, by dissensions among ourselves–dissensions perhaps inseparable from the enjoyment of freedom, but which have more than once appeared to threaten the dissolution of the Union, and with it the overthrow of all the enjoyments of our present lot and all our earthly hopes of the future. The causes of these dissensions have been various, founded upon differences of speculation in the theory of republican government upon conflicting views of policy in our relations with foreign nations upon jealousies of partial and sectional interests, aggravated by prejudices and prepossessions which strangers to each other are ever apt to entertain.
It is a source of gratification and of encouragement to me to observe that the great result of this experiment upon the theory of human rights has at the close of that generation by which it was formed been crowned with success equal to the most sanguine expectations of its founders. Union, justice, tranquillity, the common defense, the general welfare, and the blessings of liberty–all have been promoted by the Government under which we have lived. Standing at this point of time, looking back to that generation which has gone by and forward to that which is advancing, we may at once indulge in grateful exultation and in cheering hope. From the experience of the past we derive instructive lessons for the future. Of the two great political parties which have divided the opinions and feelings of our country, the candid and the just will now admit that both have contributed splendid talents, spotless integrity, ardent patriotism, and disinterested sacrifices to the formation and administration of this Government, and that both have required a liberal indulgence for a portion of human infirmity and error. The revolutionary wars of Europe, commencing precisely at the moment when the Government of the United States first went into operation under this Constitution, excited a collision of sentiments and of sympathies which kindled all the passions and imbittered the conflict of parties till the nation was involved in war and the Union was shaken to its center. This time of trial embraced a period of five and twenty years, during which the policy of the Union in its relations with Europe constituted the principal basis of our political divisions and the most arduous part of the action of our Federal Government. With the catastrophe in which the wars of the French Revolution terminated, and our own subsequent peace with Great Britain, this baneful weed of party strife was uprooted. From that time no difference of principle, connected either with the theory of government or with our intercourse with foreign nations, has existed or been called forth in force sufficient to sustain a continued combination of parties or to give more than wholesome animation to public sentiment or legislative debate. Our political creed is, without a dissenting voice that can be heard, that the will of the people is the source and the happiness of the people the end of all legitimate government upon earth that the best security for the beneficence and the best guaranty against the abuse of power consists in the freedom, the purity, and the frequency of popular elections that the General Government of the Union and the separate governments of the States are all sovereignties of limited powers, fellow-servants of the same masters, uncontrolled within their respective spheres, uncontrollable by encroachments upon each other that the firmest security of peace is the preparation during peace of the defenses of war that a rigorous economy and accountability of public expenditures should guard against the aggravation and alleviate when possible the burden of taxation that the military should be kept in strict subordination to the civil power that the freedom of the press and of religious opinion should be inviolate that the policy of our country is peace and the ark of our salvation union are articles of faith upon which we are all now agreed. If there have been those who doubted whether a confederated representative democracy were a government competent to the wise and orderly management of the common concerns of a mighty nation, those doubts have been dispelled if there have been projects of partial confederacies to be erected upon the ruins of the Union, they have been scattered to the winds if there have been dangerous attachments to one foreign nation and antipathies against another, they have been extinguished. Ten years of peace, at home and abroad, have assuaged the animosities of political contention and blended into harmony the most discordant elements of public opinion. There still remains one effort of magnanimity, one sacrifice of prejudice and passion, to be made by the individuals throughout the nation who have heretofore followed the standards of political party. It is that of discarding every remnant of rancor against each other, of embracing as countrymen and friends, and of yielding to talents and virtue alone that confidence which in times of contention for principle was bestowed only upon those who bore the badge of party communion.
The collisions of party spirit which originate in speculative opinions or in different views of administrative policy are in their nature transitory. Those which are founded on geographical divisions, adverse interests of soil, climate, and modes of domestic life are more permanent, and therefore, perhaps, more dangerous. It is this which gives inestimable value to the character of our Government, at once federal and national. It holds out to us a perpetual admonition to preserve alike and with equal anxiety the rights of each individual State in its own government and the rights of the whole nation in that of the Union. Whatsoever is of domestic concernment, unconnected with the other members of the Union or with foreign lands, belongs exclusively to the administration of the State governments. Whatsoever directly involves the rights and interests of the federative fraternity or of foreign powers is of the resort of this General Government. The duties of both are obvious in the general principle, though sometimes perplexed with difficulties in the detail. To respect the rights of the State governments is the inviolable duty of that of the Union the government of every State will feel its own obligation to respect and preserve the rights of the whole. The prejudices everywhere too commonly entertained against distant strangers are worn away, and the jealousies of jarring interests are allayed by the composition and functions of the great national councils annually assembled from all quarters of the Union at this place. Here the distinguished men from every section of our country, while meeting to deliberate upon the great interests of those by whom they are deputed, learn to estimate the talents and do justice to the virtues of each other. The harmony of the nation is promoted and the whole Union is knit together by the sentiments of mutual respect, the habits of social intercourse, and the ties of personal friendship formed between the representatives of its several parts in the performance of their service at this metropolis.
Passing from this general review of the purposes and injunctions of the Federal Constitution and their results as indicating the first traces of the path of duty in the discharge of my public trust, I turn to the Administration of my immediate predecessor as the second. It has passed away in a period of profound peace, how much to the satisfaction of our country and to the honor of our country’s name is known to you all. The great features of its policy, in general concurrence with the will of the Legislature, have been to cherish peace while preparing for defensive war to yield exact justice to other nations and maintain the rights of our own to cherish the principles of freedom and of equal rights wherever they were proclaimed to discharge with all possible promptitude the national debt to reduce within the narrowest limits of efficiency the military force to improve the organization and discipline of the Army to provide and sustain a school of military science to extend equal protection to all the great interests of the nation to promote the civilization of the Indian tribes, and to proceed in the great system of internal improvements within the limits of the constitutional power of the Union. Under the pledge of these promises, made by that eminent citizen at the time of his first induction to this office, in his career of eight years the internal taxes have been repealed sixty millions of the public debt have been discharged provision has been made for the comfort and relief of the aged and indigent among the surviving warriors of the Revolution the regular armed force has been reduced and its constitution revised and perfected the accountability for the expenditure of public moneys has been made more effective the Floridas have been peaceably acquired, and our boundary has been extended to the Pacific Ocean the independence of the southern nations of this hemisphere has been recognized, and recommended by example and by counsel to the potentates of Europe progress has been made in the defense of the country by fortifications and the increase of the Navy, toward the effectual suppression of the African traffic in slaves in alluring the aboriginal hunters of our land to the cultivation of the soil and of the mind, in exploring the interior regions of the Union, and in preparing by scientific researches and surveys for the further application of our national resources to the internal improvement of our country.
In this brief outline of the promise and performance of my immediate predecessor the line of duty for his successor is clearly delineated. To pursue to their consummation those purposes of improvement in our common condition instituted or recommended by him will embrace the whole sphere of my obligations. To the topic of internal improvement, emphatically urged by him at his inauguration, I recur with peculiar satisfaction. It is that from which I am convinced that the unborn millions of our posterity who are in future ages to people this continent will derive their most fervent gratitude to the founders of the Union that in which the beneficent action of its Government will be most deeply felt and acknowledged. The magnificence and splendor of their public works are among the imperishable glories of the ancient republics. The roads and aqueducts of Rome have been the admiration of all after ages, and have survived thousands of years after all her conquests have been swallowed up in despotism or become the spoil of barbarians. Some diversity of opinion has prevailed with regard to the powers of Congress for legislation upon objects of this nature. The most respectful deference is due to doubts originating in pure patriotism and sustained by venerated authority. But nearly twenty years have passed since the construction of the first national road was commenced. The authority for its construction was then unquestioned. To how many thousands of our countrymen has it proved a benefit? To what single individual has it ever proved an injury? Repeated, liberal, and candid discussions in the Legislature have conciliated the sentiments and approximated the opinions of enlightened minds upon the question of constitutional power. I can not but hope that by the same process of friendly, patient, and persevering deliberation all constitutional objections will ultimately be removed. The extent and limitation of the powers of the General Government in relation to this transcendently important interest will be settled and acknowledged to the common satisfaction of all, and every speculative scruple will be solved by a practical public blessing.
Fellow-citizens, you are acquainted with the peculiar circumstances of the recent election, which have resulted in affording me the opportunity of addressing you at this time. You have heard the exposition of the principles which will direct me in the fulfillment of the high and solemn trust imposed upon me in this station. Less possessed of your confidence in advance than any of my predecessors, I am deeply conscious of the prospect that I shall stand more and oftener in need of your indulgence. Intentions upright and pure, a heart devoted to the welfare of our country, and the unceasing application of all the faculties allotted to me to her service are all the pledges that I can give for the faithful performance of the arduous duties I am to undertake. To the guidance of the legislative councils, to the assistance of the executive and subordinate departments, to the friendly cooperation of the respective State governments, to the candid and liberal support of the people so far as it may be deserved by honest industry and zeal, I shall look for whatever success may attend my public service and knowing that “except the Lord keep the city the watchman waketh but in vain,” with fervent supplications for His favor, to His overruling providence I commit with humble but fearless confidence my own fate and the future destinies of my country.
By Sean-Lynn Jones and Michael Weishan ’86
“Mt. Auburn Street, 1907,” image courtesy of the personal collection of S. Pardo Sanchez.
Most of the buildings of Adams House were originally private “Gold Coast” dormitories built around the turn of the 20th century to provide luxurious accommodation for rich Harvard undergraduates. They and Apthorp House are older than the rest of Harvard’s Houses and are among the most interesting and architecturally significant structures at the College.
Apthorp House , now the Masters’ Residence, is the oldest part of Adams House. The house was built in 1760 for the Reverend East Apthorp of Christ Church, the first Anglican congregation in Cambridge. The Reverend Apthorp had recently completed his studies at Oxford University, where he apparently acquired taste somewhat more extravagant than early colonists expected to find in an ostensibly religious missionary. Apthorp House was one of the largest and most magnificent houses in Cambridge, surrounded by grounds that originally extended toward the Charles River. John Adams wrote that “a great house, at that time thought to be a splendid palace, was built by Mr. Apthorp at Cambridge.” The opulence of the house aroused suspicions among Cambridge’s Congregationalists that the Reverend Apthorp aspired to become a bishop. The resulting controversy, in which Apthorp House was dubbed “the Bishop’s Palace,” forced him to flee to Britain in 1764. John Borland bought the house and added a third story, but he too was forced to leave Apthorp House when his Tory sentiments became unpopular at the start of the American Revolution in 1775.
General Israel Putnam of the Continental Army subsequently stayed in Apthorp House and planned the Battle of Bunker Hill there. Later in the Revolution, the British General John "Gentleman Johnny" Burgoyne was held prisoner in Apthorp after his surrender at the Battle of Saratoga in 1777. Like many subsequent tenants in Cambridge, he complained bitterly about the lack of furnishings and the exorbitant rent he was forced to pay. Legend has it that Burgoyne’s ghost still haunts the house. After the revolution and throughout the nineteenth century, Apthorp passed quietly through a succession of owners until it was incorporated into Harvard’s Gold Coast of private dormitories in the early 1900s. Apthorp House was acquired in 1901 by the Coolidge brothers, who were also responsible for Randolph Hall , and the venerable building became an undergraduate residence. This was apparently a raucous era, complete with indoor rifle and pistol practice, football in the hallways, water fights, and a pet monkey. After almost 30 years of student use, Apthorp had to be completely renovated before it could become the residence of the Adams House Masters (now known as the Faculty Deans) in 1931.
The Gold Coast Era and its Buildings
Randolph Hall ( Entryways D through I) , Westmorly Court ( Entryways A & B) , and Claverly Hall ( Entryways J through M ) were all built as Gold Coast dormitories. The Gold Coast dorms were constructed in the late 19th and early 20th centuries to provide rich Harvard men an alternative to the antiquated Yard dormitories, which then lacked running water, steam heat, electric light, and indoor bathrooms. These new buildings were privately owned, but rented rooms only to Harvard undergraduates. They contained minimal dining facilities because residents generally took meals in dining or final clubs. When the Gold Coast dormitories flourished around the turn of the 20th century, Mount Auburn Street became the center of much undergraduate life, which was linked closely to Boston society dinners, balls, athletic events, and clubs. Claverly, Randolph, and Westmorly are the only Gold Coast buildings that are part of the current House system. Many of the other private halls of residence have been torn down. Those that survive have become apartment buildings, such as as 1137 Massachusetts Avenue, 65 Mount Auburn Street, and the Beaux-Arts building over the Harvard Book Store.
"Claverly Hall, 1904," image courtesy of the personal collection of S. Pardo Sanchez.
Claverly Hall , completed in 1893, was the first truly luxurious Gold Coast dormitory, featuring private baths, steam heat, and a now-closed swimming pool on the ground floor. It was financed by Charles Wetmore, a recent Harvard graduate who decided to capitalize on the private dormitory movement. By 1902, Wetmore had formed the Claverly Trust, which owned Claverly and Westmorly, as well as Apley Court, and Craigie Hall, two other Gold Coast dormitories.
Randolph Hall was built in 1897 at the initiative of Archibald Cary Coolidge, a professor of History who later became director of the Harvard College Library and founding editor of Foreign Affairs magazine. Coolidge hoped that building a private dormitory would offer a sound investment, allow his brother to practice his skills as an architect, provide himself with lodgings, and enable Harvard students to enjoy a style of residence based on the Oxford and Cambridge colleges. Randolph in many ways was a forerunner of the current Harvard House system. It had its own breakfast room, courtyard, and, after 1907, athletic facilities (including a swimming pool and tennis courts) in what is now the Adams House Art Space. Coolidge functioned much like a Faculty Dean. The building was notable for its Flemish gable, oriels, curved stairstaircases, and telephone system—a rare amenity even by Gold Coast standards. D-Entryway’s floor plans, doors, and trim differ from the rest of Randolph because it was added in 1901 and further rebuilt after being gutted by a fire on March 16, 1911. The construction of Randolph gave rise to a dispute between Wetmore and Coolidge. The former asked the latter to leave a ten-foot setback on Linden Street so that Claverly rooms would still get sunlight.
“Commencement, 2014,” image courtesy of S. Pardo Sanchez
Westmorly Court was one of the first buildings designed by the New York firm of Warren and Wetmore, in which Charles Wetmore was a principal architect. The firm later was responsible for Grand Central Terminal (1913) and the Biltmore Hotel (1914) in New York. Construction of Westmorly proceeded in two phases: Westmorly South, now B-Entryway, was completed in 1898, while Westmorly North—A-Entryway—did not open until 1902. Even in the heyday of the Gold Coast, Westmorly was notorious for its ornate swimming pool and some of the most expensive rooms at Harvard. It also featured a solarium on the roof of B-Entryway that has since been removed. Westmorly, Claverly, Randolph, and the other Gold Coast dormitories initially prospered, but in
“Westmorly Court,” image courtesy of the Adams House Archives.
The Birth of Adams House
“Adams House, 1932,” image courtesy of the Adams House Archives.
The House Era
James Phinney Baxter '14 , the first Master of Adams House, chose to name the new House after John Adams and the Adams family . The family has produced two presidents, several ambassadors, leading industrialists, a famous historian, and one of the great women of the Colonial and Federal periods . Portraits of various Adamses hang on the Dining Hall walls. The house coat-of-arms is derived from the seal ring of John Quincy Adams . Master Baxter made the background gold to symbolize the Gold Coast and the five sprigs of oak leaves stand for the five buildings of Adams House. The House motto, “Alteri S[a]eculo,” is from Caecilius Statius, as quoted in Cicero’s Tusculan Disputations: “he who plants trees labors for the benefit of future generations.” House residents are called “Gold Coasters.” Adams was the last of the initial group of undergraduate Houses to be completed. It evidently did not enjoy immediate popularity. Undergraduates of the 1930s seemed to prefer the modernity of other Houses to the history and tradition of Adams. In 1932, the
“James Phinney Baxter,” image courtesy of the Adams House Archives.
By 1948, the House was more popular, and the Crimson extolled the virtues of Adams: “You can sleep till Memorial Hall chimes ring and make your 9 o’clock class. You can eat the best food in the College as immense inter-house eating lines attest. You can swim in the only House pool. And you can test your attitude toward parietal rules against the challenge of a dozen unguarded gates. In short, almost everything prospective House residents want, Adams claims to have.” There was one drawback, however: “When it comes to athletics, Adams takes a back seat, having experienced a conspicuous lack of success in the past few years.” The following year, the Crimson voiced its approval of the residents of Adams: “Socially, Adams men are above par. They wear their share of dirty white shoes and striped ties, and drink brandy or sherry freely. The house’s dignified yet comfortable atmosphere is well-suited to impress a date.” Upon Little’s untimely death in 1954, English Professor Reuben Arthur Brower assumed the chair at Apthorp. It was during this period that Adams’ popularity began to soar, for reasons alluded to above. Parietal rules were still in force, but unlike its gated River House sisters, Adams doors were largely unpoliced. Adams House grew in popularity during the early 1950s and developed some enduring and endearing traits.
“Adams House Formal,” image courtesy of the Adams House Archives.
The 1960s and 1970s saw many changes in Adams and other Houses. By the late 1960s, the requirement that men wear jackets and ties in the Dining Hall seemed anachronistic and the University gave up trying to enforce it. The later sixties brought radical changes to Adams as it did to the other Houses: due mostly to its proximity in the Yard, Adams became a center for student activism. On several occasions Adams residents, tiring of the constant disturbances, had to forcibly escort outside protestors
“Now Prohibited,” image courtesy of the Adams House Archives.
Another major societal shift was the empowerment of gay and lesbian students in the House, a process that began in the late1970s. Master Robert Kiely recounts its gradual institutionalization:
One lunchtime a small group of students joined me. When others at the table left, they began a bit shyly to explain that they were gay and hoped to form a student organization that would be recognized by the College and could hold meetings in Adams House. When they asked me to be one of their faculty advisers, I was deeply touched by their trust. (We have to try to remember that in the Harvard of that time, homosexuality was not part of the public conversation. When mentioned [by administrators], it was either on the sly or with embarrassment. I recall a dean telling me that he had heard there were gay students at Adams and wondered if I wanted him to ‘do something about it.’ I told him that I never asked students about their sexual orientation and, in any case, I did not want anything to be ‘done about it.’) Over the next year or two, these students and their friends visited all the House Masters and set up tables in all of the Houses inviting anyone who wanted to sit with them. It took courage. That spring I made a point to invite the newly formed organization to come with dates to the Waltz Evening which they did, women with women, men with men. French Wall ’83 and his date cut in on my wife and me. When I found myself waltzing with a tall handsome junior, I asked, ‘Who should lead?’ I’ll never forget his answer: ‘You’re the Master!’
The much-lamented Adams House Raft Race also dates from this period. Originating in the early 1970s, the Raft Race, held each May, attracted entries from every House and some dorms from MIT and BU. The so-called rafts — floating objects of varying size and shape — started at the Anderson Bridge and ended, if they and their occupants were still afloat, at the Weeks Bridge. All rafts had to be hand-propelled. MIT and Dunster House tended to design the most elaborate and seaworthy craft, according to Master Kiely, while Adamsians created the best T-shirts. (In the late 1970s the Bow and Arrow Press,
“Adams House Raft Race,” image courtesy of the Adams House Archives.
Throughout the 1970s and 1980s, the arts flourished in Adams House. In the late 1970s, Peter Sellars staged his famous production of Antony and Cleopatra, in which Egypt and Rome were represented by barges floating in what is now the Pool Theater. The House drew crowds for Sellars’ innovative weekly plays. In the 1990s Adams House underwent several changes. The random assignment of freshmen to Houses made Adams House more of a microcosm of Harvard College and less of a concentrated haven for the artistic and idiosyncratic. The iconic swimming pool, which had become legendary for illicit late-night parties, was closed and converted into a theater due to a leak.
The Palfrey Era“Housing Day, 2014,” image courtesy of Jen Yao.
Though the House has changed over the years, the love that students, Tutors, and faculty have for Adams remains steadfast. Adams prides itself on being a tight-knit community, and welcomes new Adamsians to join the House and leave their marks here.
10. Wells-Halliday Mansion
The Dutch Colonial-style Wells-Halliday Mansion was built in 1901 for Eliza W. Halliday, the widow of Captain William Parker Halliday, a “Civil War millionaire.” Ms. Halliday seemed to keep residence in the 12-room estate until about 1920.
From 1993 until 2006, it was run as a hospice for men with AIDS. A 1993 Los Angeles Times article from when the hospice opened described the house's “warm wood paneling, colorfully stenciled floors and Arts and Crafts tiled fireplaces.” The dwelling's gambrel roof is still visible over the wall of hedges along Adams Boulevard.
Nathan Jones purchased the township of East Hoosac at auction in 1762 from the state for £3,200. In 1778, the town was officially incorporated as Adams, named in honor of Samuel Adams, a revolutionary leader and signer of the Declaration of Independence. Much of the land had been subdivided into 100-acre (0.40 km 2 ) and 200-acre (0.81 km 2 ) lots. These were mostly farms with frontage on the Hoosic River, which over time would provide water power for woolen, cotton, lumber, and plastic mills.
First settled in 1745, North Adams was originally part of Adams until the town split in 1878. Although there has never been a town of South Adams, the name was used prior to 1878 to specify the southern part of the town that had long had two primary centers, and survives in the name of the South Adams Savings Bank, which was incorporated in 1869.
Early settlers in the 1760s included a group of Quakers, many of whom migrated together from Smithfield, Rhode Island. The Quaker civil rights leader, abolitionist, and suffragist Susan B. Anthony was born in 1820 in Adams, and her family lived there until she was six. They moved west into New York, and later moved again to western New York. Anthony's childhood home has been preserved and is operated today as a museum.
The town's population declined from 1810 to 1820 as farmers moved west for better soil. The War of 1812 had the unintended result of stimulating development of the textile industry in the United States because British textiles were no longer available. In 1814, the Adams South Village Cotton Manufacture Company opened. With the construction of a number of mills on the Hoosic River, the demand for labor increased greatly, and Adams' population more than doubled to 4,000 between 1820 and 1835. Growth in both halves of Adams also was stimulated by the opening of the Hoosac Tunnel in 1875. In the late 1800s, during the expansion of the cotton mills, four large brick buildings were constructed on Park Street: the P. J. Barrett Block, Jones Block, Armory Block, and the Mausert Block, opposite the Town Hall. They were used for retail stores and offices.
President William McKinley made two visits to the town, the second in 1897 to lay the cornerstone of the Adams Free Library. He was a friend of the Plunkett brothers (founders in 1889 of the Berkshire Cotton Manufacturing Company), and of the textile industry generally. In 1903, the town honored the assassinated president by erecting a larger-than-life statue beside the library.
Berkshire Cotton later became a major part of Berkshire Hathaway it continued to manufacture high-quality textiles through the mid-20th century. Its large factory in Adams was closed in 1958. Many textile jobs had moved South, as the industry relocated to states with lower wages and weak unions.
The mill town's only major remaining mill, Specialty Minerals, mines and processes limestone for calcium carbonate. This is used in antacids and food supplements, as well as paper whiteners and other industrial purposes.
Since the late 20th century, the town has encouraged historic and destination tourism, part of a broader trend in the Berkshires. It has promoted its natural environment and outdoor activities, and its proximity to the galleries, museums and colleges of North Adams. [ citation needed ]
According to the United States Census Bureau, the town has a total area of 23.0 square miles (59.5 km 2 ), of which 22.9 square miles (59.3 km 2 ) is land and 0.077 square miles (0.2 km 2 ), or 0.33%, is water.  The town lies along the valley surrounding the Hoosic River and its tributary brooks. Set between the Taconic Range to the west and the Hoosac Range of the Berkshires to the east, Adams includes the summit of Mount Greylock, elevation 3,491 feet (1,064 m) above sea level. The mountain, located within the state reservation of the same name, is the highest point in Massachusetts, a waypoint on the Appalachian Trail, and in the 19th-century inspired writers including Herman Melville. The town also includes a corner of Savoy Mountain State Park.
Adams is bordered to the north by North Adams, to the east by Florida and Savoy, to the south by Savoy and Cheshire, and to the west by New Ashford and Williamstown.
Massachusetts Route 8 is the primary north–south road through town, and was originally signed as New England Interstate Route 8, which extended southward to Bridgeport, Connecticut. The town is the northern terminus of Route 116, which extends southeast to Springfield.
Until 1953 the New York Central Railroad had operated passenger trains from North Adams, south through Adams towards Pittsfield and Chatham, New York over Boston & Albany rail lines. The station house, Adams station still stands.   Amtrak train service on the Lake Shore Limited is available 15 miles to the south at Pittsfield's Scelsi ITC.
Freight rail once ran through the town, but is now mostly converted to the paved Ashuwillticook Rail Trail. The town lies along the northern route of the Berkshire Regional Transit Authority. Regional bus service can be found in North Adams, as can regional air service at Harriman-and-West Airport. The nearest airport with international flights is Albany International Airport in New York.
|* = population estimate. |
Source: United States census records and Population Estimates Program data.          
As of the census  of 2000, there were 8,809 people, 3,992 households, and 2,431 families residing in the town. Adams is the third most populated town in Berkshire County, and ranks 184th out of the 351 cities and towns in Massachusetts. The population density was 384.1 people per square mile (148.3/km 2 ), ranking it third in the county and 197th in the Commonwealth. There were 4,362 housing units at an average density of 190.2 per square mile (73.4/km 2 ), albeit packed into a fairly small portion of lower-lying land. The racial makeup of the town was 98.02% White, 0.36% Black or African American, 0.08% Native American, 0.24% Asian, 0.05% Pacific Islander, 0.27% from other races, and 0.98% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 0.82% of the population.
There were 3,992 households, out of which 26.9% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 45.0% were married couples living together, 11.9% had a female householder with no husband present, and 39.1% were non-families. 34.8% of all households were made up of individuals, and 17.7% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.20 and the average family size was 2.81.
In the town, the population was spread out, with 22.4% under the age of 18, 6.6% from 18 to 24, 26.9% from 25 to 44, 23.6% from 45 to 64, and 20.4% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 41 years. For every 100 females, there were 89.2 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 85.0 males.
The median income for a household in the town was $32,161, and the median income for a family was $40,559. Males had a median income of $34,110 versus $23,556 for females. The per capita income for the town was $18,572. About 7.0% of families and 10.3% of the population were below the poverty line, including 12.7% of those under age 18 and 12.9% of those age 65 or over.
The zeal and ardor of the people during the Revolutionary war, supplying the place of government, commanded a degree of order sufficient at least for the temporary preservation of society. The Confederation which was early felt to be necessary was prepared from the models of the Batavian and Helvetic confederacies, the only examples which remain with any detail and precision in history, and certainly the only ones which the people at large had ever considered. But reflecting on the striking difference in so many particulars between this country and those where a courier may go from the seat of government to the frontier in a single day, it was then certainly foreseen by some who assisted in Congress at the formation of it that it could not be durable.
Negligence of its regulations, inattention to its recommendations, if not disobedience to its authority, not only in individuals but in States, soon appeared with their melancholy consequences-- universal languor, jealousies and rivalries of States, decline of navigation and commerce, discouragement of necessary manufactures, universal fall in the value of lands and their produce, contempt of public and private faith, loss of consideration and credit with foreign nations, and at length in discontents, animosities, combinations, partial conventions, and insurrection, threatening some great national calamity.
In this dangerous crisis the people of America were not abandoned by their usual good sense, presence of mind, resolution, or integrity. Measures were pursued to concert a plan to form a more perfect union, establish justice, insure domestic tranquillity, provide for the common defense, promote the general welfare, and secure the blessings of liberty. The public disquisitions, discussions, and deliberations issued in the present happy Constitution of Government.
Employed in the service of my country abroad during the whole course of these transactions, I first saw the Constitution of the United States in a foreign country. Irritated by no literary altercation, animated by no public debate, heated by no party animosity, I read it with great satisfaction, as the result of good heads prompted by good hearts, as an experiment better adapted to the genius, character, situation, and relations of this nation and country than any which had ever been proposed or suggested. In its general principles and great outlines it was conformable to such a system of government as I had ever most esteemed, and in some States, my own native State in particular, had contributed to establish. Claiming a right of suffrage, in common with my fellow-citizens, in the adoption or rejection of a constitution which was to rule me and my posterity, as well as them and theirs, I did not hesitate to express my approbation of it on all occasions, in public and in private. It was not then, nor has been since, any objection to it in my mind that the Executive and Senate were not more permanent. Nor have I ever entertained a thought of promoting any alteration in it but such as the people themselves, in the course of their experience, should see and feel to be necessary or expedient, and by their representatives in Congress and the State legislatures, according to the Constitution itself, adopt and ordain.
Returning to the bosom of my country after a painful separation from it for ten years, I had the honor to be elected to a station under the new order of things, and I have repeatedly laid myself under the most serious obligations to support the Constitution. The operation of it has equaled the most sanguine expectations of its friends, and from an habitual attention to it, satisfaction in its administration, and delight in its effects upon the peace, order, prosperity, and happiness of the nation I have acquired an habitual attachment to it and veneration for it.
What other form of government, indeed, can so well deserve our esteem and love?
There may be little solidity in an ancient idea that congregations of men into cities and nations are the most pleasing objects in the sight of superior intelligences, but this is very certain, that to a benevolent human mind there can be no spectacle presented by any nation more pleasing, more noble, majestic, or august, than an assembly like that which has so often been seen in this and the other Chamber of Congress, of a Government in which the Executive authority, as well as that of all the branches of the Legislature, are exercised by citizens selected at regular periods by their neighbors to make and execute laws for the general good. Can anything essential, anything more than mere ornament and decoration, be added to this by robes and diamonds? Can authority be more amiable and respectable when it descends from accidents or institutions established in remote antiquity than when it springs fresh from the hearts and judgments of an honest and enlightened people? For it is the people only that are represented. It is their power and majesty that is reflected, and only for their good, in every legitimate government, under whatever form it may appear. The existence of such a government as ours for any length of time is a full proof of a general dissemination of knowledge and virtue throughout the whole body of the people. And what object or consideration more pleasing than this can be presented to the human mind? If national pride is ever justifiable or excusable it is when it springs, not from power or riches, grandeur or glory, but from conviction of national innocence, information, and benevolence.
In the midst of these pleasing ideas we should be unfaithful to ourselves if we should ever lose sight of the danger to our liberties if anything partial or extraneous should infect the purity of our free, fair, virtuous, and independent elections. If an election is to be determined by a majority of a single vote, and that can be procured by a party through artifice or corruption, the Government may be the choice of a party for its own ends, not of the nation for the national good. If that solitary suffrage can be obtained by foreign nations by flattery or menaces, by fraud or violence, by terror, intrigue, or venality, the Government may not be the choice of the American people, but of foreign nations. It may be foreign nations who govern us, and not we, the people, who govern ourselves and candid men will acknowledge that in such cases choice would have little advantage to boast of over lot or chance.
Such is the amiable and interesting system of government (and such are some of the abuses to which it may be exposed) which the people of America have exhibited to the admiration and anxiety of the wise and virtuous of all nations for eight years under the administration of a citizen who, by a long course of great actions, regulated by prudence, justice, temperance, and fortitude, conducting a people inspired with the same virtues and animated with the same ardent patriotism and love of liberty to independence and peace, to increasing wealth and unexampled prosperity, has merited the gratitude of his fellow-citizens, commanded the highest praises of foreign nations, and secured immortal glory with posterity.
In that retirement which is his voluntary choice may he long live to enjoy the delicious recollection of his services, the gratitude of mankind, the happy fruits of them to himself and the world, which are daily increasing, and that splendid prospect of the future fortunes of this country which is opening from year to year. His name may be still a rampart, and the knowledge that he lives a bulwark, against all open or secret enemies of his country's peace. This example has been recommended to the imitation of his successors by both Houses of Congress and by the voice of the legislatures and the people throughout the nation.
On this subject it might become me better to be silent or to speak with diffidence but as something may be expected, the occasion, I hope, will be admitted as an apology if I venture to say that if a preference, upon principle, of a free republican government, formed upon long and serious reflection, after a diligent and impartial inquiry after truth if an attachment to the Constitution of the United States, and a conscientious determination to support it until it shall be altered by the judgments and wishes of the people, expressed in the mode prescribed in it if a respectful attention to the constitutions of the individual States and a constant caution and delicacy toward the State governments if an equal and impartial regard to the rights, interest, honor, and happiness of all the States in the Union, without preference or regard to a northern or southern, an eastern or western, position, their various political opinions on unessential points or their personal attachments if a love of virtuous men of all parties and denominations if a love of science and letters and a wish to patronize every rational effort to encourage schools, colleges, universities, academies, and every institution for propagating knowledge, virtue, and religion among all classes of the people, not only for their benign influence on the happiness of life in all its stages and classes, and of society in all its forms, but as the only means of preserving our Constitution from its natural enemies, the spirit of sophistry, the spirit of party, the spirit of intrigue, the profligacy of corruption, and the pestilence of foreign influence, which is the angel of destruction to elective governments if a love of equal laws, of justice, and humanity in the interior administration if an inclination to improve agriculture, commerce, and manufacturers for necessity, convenience, and defense if a spirit of equity and humanity toward the aboriginal nations of America, and a disposition to meliorate their condition by inclining them to be more friendly to us, and our citizens to be more friendly to them if an inflexible determination to maintain peace and inviolable faith with all nations, and that system of neutrality and impartiality among the belligerent powers of Europe which has been adopted by this Government and so solemnly sanctioned by both Houses of Congress and applauded by the legislatures of the States and the public opinion, until it shall be otherwise ordained by Congress if a personal esteem for the French nation, formed in a residence of seven years chiefly among them, and a sincere desire to preserve the friendship which has been so much for the honor and interest of both nations if, while the conscious honor and integrity of the people of America and the internal sentiment of their own power and energies must be preserved, an earnest endeavor to investigate every just cause and remove every colorable pretense of complaint if an intention to pursue by amicable negotiation a reparation for the injuries that have been committed on the commerce of our fellow-citizens by whatever nation, and if success can not be obtained, to lay the facts before the Legislature, that they may consider what further measures the honor and interest of the Government and its constituents demand if a resolution to do justice as far as may depend upon me, at all times and to all nations, and maintain peace, friendship, and benevolence with all the world if an unshaken confidence in the honor, spirit, and resources of the American people, on which I have so often hazarded my all and never been deceived if elevated ideas of the high destinies of this country and of my own duties toward it, founded on a knowledge of the moral principles and intellectual improvements of the people deeply engraven on my mind in early life, and not obscured but exalted by experience and age and, with humble reverence, I feel it to be my duty to add, if a veneration for the religion of a people who profess and call themselves Christians, and a fixed resolution to consider a decent respect for Christianity among the best recommendations for the public service, can enable me in any degree to comply with your wishes, it shall be my strenuous endeavor that this sagacious injunction of the two Houses shall not be without effect.
With this great example before me, with the sense and spirit, the faith and honor, the duty and interest, of the same American people pledged to support the Constitution of the United States, I entertain no doubt of its continuance in all its energy, and my mind is prepared without hesitation to lay myself under the most solemn obligations to support it to the utmost of my power.
And may that Being who is supreme over all, the Patron of Order, the Fountain of Justice, and the Protector in all ages of the world of virtuous liberty, continue His blessing upon this nation and its Government and give it all possible success and duration consistent with the ends of His providence.