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presidents-trail

Historic Landmarks on the Presidents Trail 

An urban walking trail through Quincy’s rich history
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1. Hancock Adams Common

Situated in the heart of Quincy’s downtown, this three-acre park and plaza boasts two ornamental fountains and monumental bronze statues honoring two of the City’s most famous inhabitants, John Adams and John Hancock.

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2. Church of the Presidents

Built in 1828, this church is the fourth edifice to house the town’s earliest congregation and is the resting place of two United States Presidents and First Ladies. The building was endowed by John Adams, who specified it be a “Temple of stone” built of Quincy granite.
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3. Brackett's Tavern Liberty Tree

Sunday. May 4th. 1766 “I saw for the first Time, a likely young Button Wood Tree, lately planted, on the Triangle made by the Three Roads, by the House of Mr. James Brackett. The Tree is well set and well guarded and has on it, an Inscription ‘The Tree of Liberty,’ and ‘cursed is he, who cutts this Tree.’” John Adams, Diary.

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4. Abigail Adams Cairn

Here Abigail Adams and seven-year-old John Quincy Adams watched the burning of Charlestown during the Battle of Bunker Hill, June 17, 1775. Abigail wrote: “the decisive Day is come on which the fate of America depends…the constant roar of the cannon is so distressing we cannot Eat, Drink or Sleep.”

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5. Presidents John Adams and John Quincy Adams Birthplaces

John Adams was born in 1735 in the house at the rear of the lot. John Quincy Adams was born in 1767 in the house at today’s street corner. Here, Abigail Adams managed house and farm for several years during the Revolution. Here, John Adams drafted the Massachusetts State Constitution, which served as a model for the United States Constitution.

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6. Hancock Cemetery

The community’s first cemetery, dating from 1640. It is the resting place of many of Quincy’s notable early residents. It was also the first resting place of John Adams, Abigail Adams, and John Quincy Adams.
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7. Quincy Town Hall (Old Town Hall)

Built in 1844 when Quincy granite was at the height of its popularity as a monumental architectural material. Solomon Willard, architect of the Bunker Hill Monument, designed the building and supervised its construction.
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8. John Hancock Birth Site and Adams Academy

In 1737 John Hancock was born in a house on this site. The house was later the home of the Josiah Quincy family. In 1822 John Adams, in endowing a school to prepared boys for college, specified it be built on this site to honor Hancock, “to whose great exertions and unlimited sacrifices this nation is so deeply indebted.”
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9. Peace Field

John and Abigail Adams acquired this house upon their return from England in 1788. It became home to four generations of the Adams family, including John and John Quincy Adams during their presidencies. Later generations referred to it fondly as “The Old House.”
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10. Quincy Homestead

This house, but in 1686 and enlarged over the next two centuries, was home to five generations of the Quincy family. Dorothy Quincy Hancock, wife of John Hancock and the First Lady of Massachusetts, grew up in the house.
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Follow the interactive walking tour on Clio.