A website from the Massachusetts Historical Society; founded 1791.
Portrait of John Adams and actor Paul Giamatti Portrait of Abigail Adams and actor Laura Linney

Episode 6: Unnecessary War

John Adams, the first president to occupy the White House, arrived in Washington City two weeks before Abigail on 1 November 1800 only to find the newly constructed "President's House" still unfinished. In his letter to Abigail written the following day, he expresses his wish for the new building. Following his bitter defeat for re-election, Adams relinquished the presidency to his political rival, Thomas Jefferson, four short months later.

Letter excerpt from John Adams to Abigail Adams, 2 November 1800

Letter excerpt from John Adams TO Abigail Adams, 2 November 1800
Before I end my Letter I pray Heaven to bestow the best of Blessings on this House and all that shall hereafter inhabit it. May none but honest and wise Men ever rule under this roof.
John Adams (signature)